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Chepstow Castle, painted in 1794 by JMW Turner
Chepstow Castle, painted in 1794 by JMW Turner

Thanks to funding secured from the Arts Council England / V&A Purchase Grant Fund and National Lottery support, Museums Association Beecroft Bequest, The Usk Valley Trust and MonLife museums’ acquisitions fund, a ‘local treasure’ – a painting by JMW Turner – will be coming home to Chepstow soon. Turner’s watercolour of Chepstow Castle is one of only two works by the artist known to capture the iconic view of the castle by the River Wye.

MonLife Heritage have acquired the beautiful landscape which will be on display in the summer at Chepstow Museum and it is hoped that as many local people as possible will visit to view the painting and be inspired by it.

Joseph Mallord William Turner (1775-1851) is acknowledged as arguably the greatest of the British ‘Romantic’ artists, and is often referred to as “the painter of light” due to his ability to evocatively capture vibrant landscapes and seascapes on paper and on canvas.

The Chepstow Castle watercolour was painted in 1794 when Turner was just 19 years old and it is thought to have been created as a result of the artist’s first tour of South Wales. Once on display at Chepstow Museum, the painting will help tell the story of not only 18th century Monmouthshire, but of Turner’s love of the county.

Cllr. Sara Burch, Cabinet Member for Inclusive & Active Communities, said: “It’s fantastic news that the painting will be coming back to Chepstow where Turner painted it at the age of 19. It will become the jewel of Monmouthshire’s collection of paintings and drawings inspired by the Wye Valley. I hope today’s young artists will see it and be inspired. We had thought purchase of a significant artwork like this was out of reach, until generous funders stepped in to save the painting for the nation and for Monmouthshire.”

Turner’s painting will be display in Chepstow in the summer, in the meantime to find out about Monmouthshire museums and their current exhibitions visit


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