St Mary's Church, Cusop, Herefordshire, England
July 23, 1858
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The present watercolour shows a view across Blackheath looking south towards Eliot Vale, with Eliot House at the far right and the tower of St Margaret’s, Lee visible. The carriage in the distance above the quarry is on Hare and Billet Road, which runs across part of the Heath. St Margaret’s Church was built between 1839-41 in the gothic revivalist style by John Brown of Norwich, to replace the ruined medieval church, part of whose tower still stands in the graveyard. It would not however, have been possible to have seen the tower as fully from the position Lindsay has adopted, suggesting that this work was produced in the studio, based on on-the-spot studies, or perhaps Lindsay merged a couple of different viewpoints in order to create a more pleasing image.
Blackheath was long exploited for its rich seams of gravel and chalk and numerous gravel and chalk pits and even underground mines were dotted over the heath. The present watercolour illustrates the scale of some of these quarries, the horse and cart at the bottom is dominated by its surroundings. Many of the old quarries were only filled in following World War II, when sites were needed to dispose of the bomb rubble.