This sketch depicts a vessel sailing past the Blythe Sands mudflats in the Thames estuary. Turner’s inscription ‘NW’ either suggests that this is a view to the north-west from Blythe Sands towards Canvey Island, or that the view is of Blythe Sands from the north-west. Two basket-shaped structures on poles to the right of the boat mark the end of groynes. There are further sketches of the mouth of the Thames on folio 2 verso (D26098), which were probably made on a steamboat journey from London to Margate.
There is a small brown stain at the top left of the page.
Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, revised ed., New Haven and London 1984, p.65 no.87.