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  • Place of origin:

    Long Sutton (possibly, painted)

  • Date:

    ca.1880 (painted)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Tiller family marionette company (painter)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    painted canvas

  • Credit Line:

    Given by the British Puppet and Model Theatre Guild

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Physical description

Painted backcloth on a wooden batten representing a harbour scene of a row of houses with red and blue roofs, and a tavern The New Inn with a blue roof, by a harbour with lobster pots on the sand, the sea and cliffs behind. The cloth consists of two canvases attached back to back, with images on both sides. The other side [S.204:1-2007] represents a Bavarian-style turreted castle in a wood. The two canvases are not joined at the bottom and the back canvas is slightly shorter than the front. Green bias binding protects both left and right edges and joins the canvases together. The batten is round and held in a sleeve created from the back canvas. Two eye screws have been attached through the sleeve into the batten approx 22mm from both edges.

Place of Origin

Long Sutton (possibly, painted)


ca.1880 (painted)


Tiller family marionette company (painter)

Materials and Techniques

painted canvas


Height: 121.5 cm cloth, Width: 167.1 cm canvas, Width: 182.5 cm top pole

Descriptive line

Backcloth representing a harbour scene with cliffs behind. The scene on the reverse was used by the Chelsea Puppet Theatre group for their burlesque mediaeval-style melodrama The Secret Well, c.1960. Painted canvas, probably c.1870 and originally made for a marionette theatre production by the Tiller family company.

Production Note

Although this cloth was used by The Chelsea Puppet Theatre group for their burlesque mediaeval melodrama The Secret Well, it is probably of 19th century origin and may have come from a marionette company such as thast operated by the Tiller family.


Canvas; Distemper

Subjects depicted

Harbour; The Sea; Cliffs; Taverns


Entertainment & Leisure; Puppetry


Theatre and Performance Collection

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