Monday, 30 August 2010

a painting in sutton-on-sea

I have recently been commissioned to paint a scene in Sutton-On-Sea. The client’s mother used to own a house in the town though she is now too elderly to visit so he thought a painting which would recall many a happy holiday would make a nice present for her.

I had never heard of Sutton-On-Sea though after searching in Google I discovered that it is in Lincolnshire. I could not find much more information aside from adverts for pubs and chip shops. The largest contribution about the town was in Wikipedia which said:

'It is host to a post office, a few public houses, a Spar store, a hotel, and a paddling pool on the front. The A52 to Skegness runs through the town.'

So in so far as the ever growing internet is concerned the core function of this community is to provide a road from somewhere unspecified to Skegness. I couldn’t wait to get there!

I left London at around 6am and planned to be on site by around 9.30 and thankfully the journey was uneventful. My client had carefully marked some key points which he felt would be interesting subjects to paint. He had chosen about a dozen or so and most were down the High Street which in itself was only a few hundred yards long. The buildings were a mixture of Victorian and 1970’s architecture. And just as Wikipedia had promised there was a Spar too.
The choice was simple. Nicks Knacks junk shop. A building rammed with a genuinely brilliant clutter of ‘stuff' that seems to spill into the street. The chap who runs the place (Nick?) is a fine fella and supplied me with cups of coffee all day and a chair too. Nick's Nacks appear to be a more that just a shop. It is a meeting point and general focus for the many of the locals. I quickly sketched them as they passed or paused outside to pass the time of day. Often with a bag of chips in hand.

It would be very easy to miss Sutton-on-Sea if you are on your way to Skegness from somewhere unspecified, though if you do go, then pop into Nick's Knacks and lose yourself for an hour or two.

I hope you like the painting.


  1. I do like the painting - very much. And I've even been to Sutton, though not for many years. As a kid I spent many happy holidays in Mablethorpe, just a mile or two along the coast. Great memories, thanks for bringing then to mind.

  2. As a Sutton on Sea resident I find that it is a good painting.....but not very descriptive of Sutton on Sea at all, I grew up here and have fond memories of the town, it is NOT just a road to somewhere, yes admittedly there isnt alot of of shops but the attraction is not just in the shopping, its a nice place to bring children, for a day at the beach, with the paddling pool right next to the beach, a childrens park and multi use sports court, we also have a nice size field with a activity park. You say most people had a bag of chips, not suprising as you were painting a shop that is right next to a chip shop (the best one in town). The Bacchus hotel is a nice meeting place, with a pub garden that often hosts events for the community. Just because you had never heard of it doesn't mean that it is insignificant as a place, so please remember that some people actually live here and to me it is Home :) I still think its a very good quality painting though

  3. Liam O'Farrell Wrote:

    Since i published this article a number of people have contacted my about Sutton-on-Sea and all its delights. Among these was a very helpful web address delivering everything you need should you wish to visit.

    Do drop by