We hadn’t even finished our letters of objection when we were given the opportunity to put on a Friends of Manning’s Pit Exhibition at the Museum. This is really exciting and will allow us to highlight the importance of Manning’s Pit from a cultural and historical perspective.
The large and magnificent oil painting (River Taw and the Railway) that you can see on the wall when you enter the Museum is by Frederick Richard Lee, who lived in Bellaire, about three hundred yards from Manning’s Pit. He was a landscape artist, and it seems virtually certain that he must have sketched in the Manning’s Pit fields, especially as he liked painting water. It appears – according to Wikipedia anyway – that there are still a large number of his paintings that are undocumented, in private collections – who knows – maybe in Pilton attics still?
The landscape has changed since the time when he was painting, trees have grown, or fallen, or been cut down, and of course Manning’s Pit may not have gained its name when he was first painting, but it is still fun to look at those of his paintings that we do know about, in the hope of spotting resemblances.
Here is a link to some more of of his works: https://artuk.org/discover/artists/lee-frederick-richard-17981879
We think Cover Side could have been painted down in the Pit….