The British Camp is a large Iron Age fort that crowns the Herefordshire Beacon, a summit in the Malvern Hills three miles south of Great Malvern. It is distinctive for its circle of walls and ditches in steeply rising tiers, which present a similar aspect from both south and north. This drawing was probably made on, or close to, the road from Eastnor to Hollybush, to the south. Turner may well have taken this route back from Wales in 1793, the likely date of the sheet. A larger pencil drawing of this subject, inscribed ‘Malvern Hills’, is in the British Museum, London (1953–4–11–35).
There is a slight continuation of the lower part of the composition on D40239 (Turner Bequest XIII H b), the other half of this part of the sheet. Owing to the complexities of accessioning, the present drawing (D00153) has been incorrectly inscribed ‘D.40239’, and vice versa. This sheet of studies and notes was once folded into four quarters (now, after cleaning, only in two halves, with traces of the second fold visible). The overall sheet is 260 x 191 mm, with each half of the recto and verso thus measuring 130 x 191 mm. Each of these four ‘halves’ has been accessioned separately, in the present case with two distinct ‘D’ numbers: