Watercolours of Boreham in Essex

Artist James Merriott takes us on a tour around the village of Boreham, which lies a few miles northeast of Chelmsford

Entering Boreham to refresh myself with the beauty of the village, I drove past Boreham Airfield, a former Royal Air Force station, which provided me with plenty of food for thought.

At the time of completing this feature, late in 2023, I also put together a small booklet of 24 pages, recording in words and watercolours my father’s dedicated commitments during the Second World War.

He was a lorry driver of heavy goods vehicles conveying huge quantities of cement to build airfield runways throughout East Anglia.

So much of what I wanted to record I left too late to find out from him, but I do know the construction of these airfields is one of the greatest engineering feats in history.

I’d like to think, like other airfields, part of Boreham’s runways was delivered by my father as cement 80 years ago.

As I toured the village, I took photographs of six subjects, three in sunshine and three against the light. All were painted and reproduced here, and with the wonderful memories of my dear Dad, my day was made varied and very memorable. Thanks Dad.

St Andrew’s Church

To my mind one of the most beautiful churches in the county, with its wide tower centre of the building.

The Six Bells

Very near the airfield, perhaps frequented by World War Two Airmen.

The Red Doors – Ebeneza Cottage

With sunlight behind the building, colourful red doors within black frames contribute maximum tone value.

Dapple Light

Opposite Ebeneza Cottage in Church Road, sunlight through the trees creates dappled light throughout the painting.

Cottages in Main Road

Superb variation with timber framed windows under tiles and plaster walls under thatch.

The Queen’s Head Inn

Another joy to paint, beautifully proportioned and a colourful composition.


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Competition closes 6pm on February 19, 2024

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You can contact James at Cottage Corner Art, 9 Byron Road, Hutton, Brentwood, CM13 2RU. Call 01277 210 728 or email jamesmerriott_art@btinternet.com to make an appointment.