The seaside and the coast

Painting showing a view to the sea with several groups of people sitting and lying down

Falmouth Harbour c.1812-1814, watercolour with some bodycolour, Lady Lever Art Gallery

In the 1820s and 1830s visitors flocked to the seaside towns on the south coast, attracted by the social life and entertainment, the architecture and by the claim that the seawater and air had health-giving properties.

Turner's own relationship with the seaside began in 1786 when he spent the large part of a year attending school in Margate, a place he frequently revisited in later life. As well as Margate, he painted views of other coastal towns and resorts such as Falmouth, Dover and Portsmouth.