"These scenes made me a painter," John Constable observed. Our patron, the distinguished author, Ronald Blythe, could tell you where Constable sat to sketch Stoke by Nayland church for one of his "six footers" and that one of his favourite viewing spots was on Gun Hill, Dedham.
The Stour valley also has a strong connection with the painter Thomas Gainsborough and our Society is in the process of campaigning for the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty which protects the Dedham Vale to be extended westwards to protect Gainsborough country.
The Vale also has strong associations with 20th century painters, through Paul Nash and his brother John who painted in the area for half a century and left a record of the agricultural changes they had seen. Sir Alfred Munnings made his name elsewhere, but in his mature period and when he was President of the Royal Academy he lived in Dedham and his home, Castle House, is now a gallery of his work.