Largest private collection of Suffolk painter’s work goes under the hammer

Thomas Churchyard's watercolour painting, The Path from Gun Hill to Beach at Southwold, will be sold

Thomas Churchyard's watercolour painting, The Path from Gun Hill to Beach at Southwold, will be sold at the auction. - Credit: Archant

The largest private collection of paintings and drawings by Suffolk artist Thomas Churchyard will be going under the hammer.

Thomas Chruchyard paintings

Thomas Chruchyard paintings - Credit: Archant

The collection had been amassed by artist and author Sally Kibble, from Southwold, who was fascinated by the 19th century painter famed for his landscape paintings.

Mrs Kibble died from cancer in 2009 aged just 54, and after the death of her husband David last year, the 60 paintings have been given by Mrs Kibble’s family to be auctioned at Durrants Auction Rooms in Beccles, next Friday, June 12.

“The collection is lovely, it really is a nice and varied collection,” said Rebecca Mayhew, Durrants valuer. “For anyone wanting to start collecting pictures it is a great sale as the prices range from £80 to £500.

“There is a mixture of water colours, oils and larger and smaller paintings.”

The collection of pictures by Churchyard - who was born in Melton, near Woodbridge, in 1798 - feature well-known landmarks and locations, including Dunwich, Lowestoft and Southwold.

Mrs Kibble also created a fictionalised group portrait called The Artist’s Daughter, narrated by Churchyard’s daughter Ellen, which was published in 2009 and is illustrated with 200 of Churchyard’s pictures - many of which are to be auctioned.

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The author proofed the book between chemotherapy sessions when she was first diagnosed with cancer in 1992.

The auction starts at 10am.

And auctioneer Mrs Mayhew is celebrating after she passed the £30,000 mark in her fundraising challenge.

The 36-year-old started fundraising for cancer charities after she was diagnosed with breast cancer nearly three years ago and has raised money for Walk the Walk, a grant-giving breast cancer charity, and Cancer Research UK.

Mrs Mayhew said: “I’m absolutely over the moon. I’m not sure my feet have touched the ground.”

Proceeds from an online auction - which will include purchases made by valuers Mark Whistler and Philip Stone at the Beccles Antique Street Market - will raise money to go towards Mrs Mayhew’s total.

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