Original drypoint etching of the Tower Bridge, London. Print etched by Arthur Cherry.

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Etched by Arthur L. Cherry

Early C20th

An original drypoint etching by Arthur L. Cherry, looking along the River Thames to Tower Bridge, near the Tower of London. The bridge was built in the C19th to provide the much needed foot and transport access to the busy port side of the East End of London. In 1884 the winning design for a bridge was submitted by John Barry and Horace Jones the City architect, but its construction took a further eight years until completion in 1896. The two 213 foot tall towers were built from steel piers encased in Portland stone and Cornish granite, but Jones’ facade was replaced with a Gothic finish by George Stevenson, to blend with the nearby Tower of London’s stonework. 

When it was built, Tower Bridge was the largest bascule bridge ever completed, spanning 200 feet between the towers, with steam powered hydraulics to raise the arms and provide access by the tall masted sailing ships to the Pool of London. The high-level walkways, the supposed haunts of pickpockets and prostitutes, were closed in 1920, although other reasons may have been that there were too many suicides, or the workers preferred to await the bridge closing rather than carry heavy loads up the steps.

In front of the bridge, Cherry has illustrated recreational and working boats, including Thames sailing barges and Thames skiffs (a traditional style of rowing boat). This print has an additional remarque of a Thames barge, at the bottom right hand side net to the artist’s signature. Tower Bridge is mentioned in Rudyard Kipling’s poem The River’s Tale, written in 1911 for Fletcher’s A History of England, where he counts twenty (or twenty-two) bridges from Tower to Kew. Read more about the Cherry Brothers of St Albans.

This is an original collectable vintage print and is in a good clean condition with pencil signature and remarque. It is available mounted in an ivory conservation quality mount and framed with a black and gold wood frame with acrylic glazing – £40.00

Approximate dimensions are:

Mount window: 100 x 150 mm

Frame overall size: 240 x 270 mm

Additional information

Weight 0.5 kg