Williamson Art Gallery and Museum
The Williamson Art Gallery and Museum is situated in Claughton, Merseyside and houses the town's collection of art. Opened on 1 December 1928, the single-storey building is Neo-Georgian in style. Financial support for its establishment was provided by John Williamson, a Director of the Cunard Steamship Co. Ltd. and his son Patrick Williamson. Its collection includes Victorian oil paintings including works by Albert Moore and Philip Steer, English watercolours, Liverpool Porcelain, Della Robbia Pottery, it has a large collection of ship models, focusing on Cammell Laird shipbuilders, the Mersey Ferries, the vessels that used the River Mersey. Listed buildings in Claughton, Merseyside Williamson Art Gallery and Museum - official site
Netherlands Institute for Art History
The Netherlands Institute for Art History or RKD is located in The Hague and is home to the largest art history center in the world. The center specializes in documentation and books on Western art from the late Middle Ages until modern times. All of this is open to the public, much of it has been digitized and is available on their website; the main goal of the bureau is to collect and make art research available, most notably in the field of Dutch Masters. Via the available databases, the visitor can gain insight into archival evidence on the lives of many artists of past centuries; the library owns 450,000 titles, of which ca. 150,000 are auction catalogs. There are ca. 3,000 magazines, of which 600 are running subscriptions. Though most of the text is in Dutch, the standard record format includes a link to library entries and images of known works, which include English as well as Dutch titles; the RKD manages the Dutch version of the Art and Architecture Thesaurus, a thesaurus of terms for management of information on art and architecture.
The original version is an initiative of the Getty Research Institute in California. The collection was started through bequests by Frits Lugt, art historian and owner of a massive collection of drawings and prints, Cornelis Hofstede de Groot, a collector, art historian and museum curator, their bequest formed the basis for both the art collection and the library, now housed in the Koninklijke Bibliotheek. Though not all of the library's holdings have been digitised, much of its metadata is accessible online; the website itself is available in both an English user interface. In the artist database RKDartists, each artist is assigned a record number. To reference an artist page directly, use the code listed at the bottom of the record of the form: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/artists/ followed by the artist's record number. For example, the artist record number for Salvador Dalí is 19752, so his RKD artist page can be referenced. In the images database RKDimages, each artwork is assigned a record number.
To reference an artwork page directly, use the code listed at the bottom of the record of the form: https://rkd.nl/en/explore/images/ followed by the artwork's record number. For example, the artwork record number for The Night Watch is 3063, so its RKD artwork page can be referenced; the Art and Architecture Thesaurus assigns a record for each term, but these can not be referenced online by record number. Rather, they are used in the databases and the databases can be searched for terms. For example, the painting called "The Night Watch" is a militia painting, all records fitting this keyword can be seen by selecting this from the image screen; the thesaurus is a set of general terms, but the RKD contains a database for an alternate form of describing artworks, that today is filled with biblical references. This is the iconclass database. To see all images that depict Miriam's dance, the associated iconclass code 71E1232 can be used as a special search term. Official website Direct link to the databases The Dutch version of the Art and Architecture Thesaurus
Astley Hall, Chorley
Astley Hall is a country house in Chorley, England. The hall is known as Astley Hall Museum and Art Gallery; the extensive landscaped grounds are now Chorley's Astley Park. The site was acquired in the 15th century by the Charnock family from the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem; the Charnocks built the original timber-framed house, around a small courtyard, about 1575-1600. In 1665, Margaret Charnock married Richard Brooke of Mere in Cheshire, they built the present grand but asymmetrical front range of brick with a pair of vast mullion and transomed bay windows; this front has a doorway with distinctly rustic Ionic columns, remarkable at such a late date. The interior is notable for the staggering mid-17th century plasterwork in the ceilings of the Great Hall and drawing room, which have heavy wreaths and disporting cherubs; the ceilings are barbaric in their excesses, the figures are poorly modelled, although the undercutting is breathtaking. Not all the moulding is of stucco: there are elements of lead and leather too.
The staircase is of the same period with a coarse but vigorously carved acanthus scroll balustrade and square newels with vases of flowers on top. The lower parts of the hall are panelled with inset paintings of a curious selection of modern worthies, including Protestants such as Elizabeth I and William the Silent; the entire width of the house on the top floor is occupied by a long gallery which contains the finest shovelboard table in existence, 23.5 feet long. The house contains a bird's-eye view by an unknown artist showing the house c. 1710, which depicts small tower-gazebos at the angles of its forecourt. In due course, the Brookes failed in the male line and the house descended to Robert Townley Parker of Cuerden, who added the south wing in 1825 and stuccoed the exterior to the design of Lewis Wyatt, who worked for Parker at Cuerden Hall; the dining room in the early 19th-century wing has inlaid 16th-century panelling brought in from elsewhere. In 1864, the will of alkali manufacturer John Hutchinson of Widnes named one of his executors as "Thomas Part of Astley Hall in Chorley", although Thomas Part may well not have been the owner at the time.
In 1922 the house and its contents were given to Chorley Corporation by Reginald Tatton, as a memorial to the local men killed in World War I. It has since been maintained as a museum; the house contains Flemish tapestries and wooden panelling. It is rumoured that Oliver Cromwell stayed at the Hall during the Battle of Preston in the 17th century and left his boots behind. However, recent research shows that these may not be his own boots, although this does not rule out him visiting the Hall. A wide range of temporary exhibitions are displayed in the art gallery throughout the season and events are organised throughout the year; the plain classical brick stable block with pedimented centre is of c. 1800. The grounds with a small lake were landscaped by John Webb and feature a picturesque meandering stream running through a wooded ravine; the Park, Coach House and Walled Garden have been renovated with help from the Heritage Lottery Fund and Chorley Council. An extensive project has seen the restoration of the 17th century ha-ha, de-silting of the lake, felling of trees, moving pets corner and extensive renovation of the coach house and walled garden.
The Coach House now houses a new art gallery and conference room on the first floor, with a cafe and education space on the ground floor. Robert Charnock; the Hall is managed by Chorley Council. It is used as a museum but can be rented for functions and is open to the public at weekends. There is no charge for public entrance. Opened in 2013, The Chorley Remembers Experience is a 500-square feet exhibition and display space, divided into three "zones" – remembrance and activity, which focusses on Chorley's involvement and military history over the years; the experience is run by the Trustees of the Chorley Pals Memorial. The permanent exhibition, located within the coach house at Astley Hall was built and installed by Heckford. Additional funding for the project was awarded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. Listed buildings in Chorley Sir H. Colvin, A biographical dictionary of British architects, 1600-1840, p. 1043 Country Life, 1922, vol. 51, p. 284. 52, pp. 14, 50, 127. 56, pp. 339, 491. 118, p. 1214 N. Cooper, Houses of the Gentry, 1480-1680, 1999, p. 321 J. Harris, The artist and the country house, 1985, pp. 97, 143 Timothy Mowl & Brian Earnshaw Architecture without kings, 1995, p. 174 J.
M. Robinson, The country houses of the north-west, 1991, pp. 154–155 Astley Hall Museum and Art Gallery - official site Manchester Region History Review, Volume 12 1998, Astley Hall Museum and Art Gallery, Nigel Wright Astley
Southport is a large seaside town in Merseyside, England. At the 2001 census, it had a population of 90,336, making it the eleventh most populous settlement in North West England. Southport is fringed to the north by the Ribble estuary; the town is 16.7 miles north of Liverpool and 14.8 miles southwest of Preston. Part of Lancashire, the town was founded in 1792 when William Sutton, an innkeeper from Churchtown, built a bathing house at what is now the south end of Lord Street. At that time, the area, known as South Hawes, was sparsely populated and dominated by sand dunes. At the turn of the 19th century, the area became popular with tourists due to the easy access from the nearby Leeds and Liverpool Canal; the rapid growth of Southport coincided with the Industrial Revolution and the Victorian era. Town attractions include Southport Pier with its Southport Pier Tramway, the second longest seaside pleasure pier in the British Isles, Lord Street is an elegant tree-lined shopping street. Extensive sand dunes stretch for several miles from Woodvale to the south of the town.
The Ainsdale sand dunes have been designated as a Ramsar site. Local fauna include the Sand lizard; the town contains examples of Victorian architecture and town planning, on Lord Street and elsewhere. A particular feature of the town is the extensive tree planting; this was one of the conditions required by the Hesketh family when they made land available for development in the 19th century. Hesketh Park at the northern end of the town is named after them, having been built on land donated by Rev. Charles Hesketh. Southport today is still one of the most popular seaside resorts in the UK, it hosts various events, including an annual air show on and over the beach, the largest independent flower show in the UK and the British Musical Fireworks Championship. The town is at the centre of England's Golf Coast and has hosted the Open Championship at the Royal Birkdale Golf Club. There have been settlements in the area now comprising Southport since the Domesday Book, some parts of the town have names of Viking origin.
The earliest recorded human activity in the region was during the Middle Stone Age, when mesolithic hunter gatherers were attracted by the abundant red deer and elk population, as well as the availability of fish and woodland. Roman coins have been found at Halsall Moss and Crossens, although the Romans never settled southwest Lancashire; the first real evidence of an early settlement here is in the Domesday Book, in which the area is called Otergimele. The name is derived from Oddrgrimir meaning the son of Grimm and is linked to the Old Norse word melr meaning sandbank; the Domesday Book states that there were 50 huts in Otergimele, housing a population of 200. The population was scattered thinly across the region and it was at the northeast end of Otergimele, where blown sand gave way to alluvial deposits from the River Ribble estuary, that a small concentration of people occurred; the alluvium provided the river itself stocks of fish. It was here, it seems, that a primitive church was built, which gave the emerging village its name of Churchtown, the parish being North Meols.
A church called. With a booming fishing industry, the area grew and hamlets became part of the parish of North Meols. From south to north, these villages were South Hawes, Little London, Higher Blowick, Lower Blowick, Rowe-Lane, Marshside and Banks; as well as Churchtown, there were vicarages in Banks. Parts of the parish were completely surrounded by water until 1692 when Thomas Fleetwood of Bank Hall cut a channel to drain Martin Mere to the sea. From this point on, attempts at large-scale drainage of Martin Mere and other marshland continued until the 19th century, since when the water has been pumped away; this created a booming farming industry. In the late 18th century, it was becoming fashionable for the well-to-do to relinquish inland spa towns and visit the seaside to bathe in the salt sea waters. At that time, doctors recommended bathing in the sea to help cure pains. In 1792, William Sutton, the landlord of the Black Bull Inn in Churchtown and known to locals as "The Old Duke", realised the importance of the newly created canal systems across the UK and set up a bathing house in the uninhabited dunes at South Hawes by the seaside just four miles away from the newly constructed Leeds and Liverpool Canal and two miles southwest of Churchtown.
When a widow from Wigan built a cottage nearby in 1797 for seasonal lodgers, Sutton built a new inn on the site of the bathing house which he called the South Port Hotel, moving to live there the following season. The locals thought him mad and referred to the building as the Duke's Folly, but Sutton arranged transport links from the canal that ran through Scarisbrick, four miles from the hotel, trade was remarkably good; the hotel survived until 1854, when it was demolished to make way for traffic at the end of Lord Street, but its presence and the impact of its founder are marked by a plaque in the vicinity, by the name of one street at the intersection, namely Duke Street, by a hotel on Duke Street which bears the legacy name of Dukes Folly Hotel. Southport grew in the 19th century as it gained a reputation for being a more refined seaside resort than its neighbour-up-the-coast Blackpool. In fact Southport had a head start compared to all the other places on the Lancashire coast because it had easy