Memories of Chester
Limited Edition Print 950 copies
Image Size 482mm x 381mm
Published in 1992
Print £ 69.00
Open Edition Print
Image Size 9" x 6"
Double Mounted Print £ 35.00
The most frequent question Stuart gets asked is "which town are you doing next?" The next question is: "how do you decide what to include?" Well with Chester he was spoilt for choice. In previous towns he would include most of the notable buildings and landmarks but here, within and outside the Roman walls there was an abundance of riches. Many substantial and historic buildings had to be discarded, but having walked the walls and criss-crossed the centre, slowly those things that Stuart wanted in his composition started to register in his mind. The elements he chose seem to have given the flavour of this unique city, and Stuart can only apologise to those who think this, that or the other, should have been included.
The Romans constructed their fortress here at the lowest bridging point of the River Dee in AD80, and stayed for 300 years. Their street layout linking the north, south, east and west gates remains within the walls which themselves were extended in the 10th Century using the warm local sandstone. The Benedictine Abbey founded in 1092 later became the Cathedral and is basically a medieval building. 'The rows' appear in the picture, these are galleried shopping arcades above the ground floor shops and stretch for a considerable distance along the main streets. Notice too in the left of the picture England's oldest racecourse.
A copy of this print ended up in the Prince of Wales' collection at St James Palace. That particular delivery trip was a different day out for Stuart.