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  • sarahhp2

J.M.W.TURNER 1775 - 1851

Turner aged 32, already a successful artist with a place in Harley Street, to which he

had attached his commercial art gallery, designed and built in 1813 his country retreat Sandycombe Lodge on a large plot of land near the River Thames, Twickenham. This

was done with the help of his friend, the renowned architect Sir John Soane. It was also where his father William went to live after his retirement as a barber and wigmaker in Covent Garden.

Turner lived there from 1814 - 1826, when he sold the property.

The property is now fully restored back to his original design, having been added to

in the Victorian era and painted white. It is open to the public and well worth a visit

for those interested in Turner, displaying on the walls Turner's oil sketches of

The Thames. The house has a drawing room, where he probably

painted, one decent size bedroom, a dining room and basement kitchen. there is also

one other small bedroom.

Turner had a lifelong artistic relationship with the River Thames, seen in his oil

sketches and his later large works.

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  • sarahhp2

17 The Circus, Bath, Somerset, once housed the famous artist Thomas Gainsborough.

Thomas, his wife Margaret and two children lived in Bath from 1759 - 1774, when

they then left for London. At first they were in a town house in Abbey Road,

which has since been demolished and they then moved to the new fashionable

area of the Circus, called King's Circus at that time.

The houses in the Circus were designed and built by John Wood the elder and

finished by his son John Wood the younger, after his fathers death. John Wood

the elder had been convinced that Bath was the centre of the Druid activity in

England and having studied Stonehenge, designed the circus in the same diameter.

It is thought that the Circus is joined to the Royal Crescent by a ley-line and that

their design represents the sun and the moon.

Thomas Gainsborough was relatively unknown when he arrived in Bath, and

to help promote his work, displayed it at the Pump Rooms, showing how

beautiful he could make his sitters. Bath was now in its fashionable heyday

with the lure of the spa, the elite staying there to take the waters. Very soon after

his arrival he gained many commissions and when he moved to the Circus, he

incorporated his studio at number 17. Because of his success in Bath he

eventually moved to London having gained a reputation as a highly respected


If you go to Bath, visit the Victoria Art Gallery and the Holbein Museum to see

examples of his work. The Assembly Rooms have a portrait that he did of

William Wade, Master of Ceremonies, which Gainsborough gave to the

Assembly Rooms.

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  • sarahhp2

Are you curious about your property's history?

House Heritage was born out of a passion for history and property. Each house

I research uncovers a unique story - Who built it? Its architectural design? The

previous occupants? These are questions we often ask about our home, which

has its own special feeling, with the energies from previous owners lingering

in the fabric of the property.

Research can also add value and saleability, with House Heritage producing

a beautifully bound book on every aspect of the property.

To tempt you more into having your home researched, I will be writing

a blog each week on the history of a famous building in the UK, covering

one aspect of its previous occupant.


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