Chorley's precious artworks go online

Chorley Citizen: Councillor Beverley Murray (second right) and Chorley Council’s museum staff at Astley Hall with The Mystical Marriage of Saint Catherine painting. Councillor Beverley Murray (second right) and Chorley Council’s museum staff at Astley Hall with The Mystical Marriage of Saint Catherine painting.

Chorley’s collection of oil paintings from the Astley Hall museum and art gallery is now available online for people to view.

The significant collection of 94 paintings, some of which are too delicate or large to go on display in Astley Hall, have been added to the Your Paintings website www.bbc.co.uk/yourpaintings.

Chorley Council has worked with the Public Catalogue Foundation (PCF) to prepare, photograph and document Astley Hall’s collection of oil paintings as part of the Your Paintings project, which aims to create a complete online catalogue of every oil painting in the national collection.

In partnership with the BBC, the PCF has so far catalogued 145,000 paintings and this will be the first time in years that people will be able to view the entire Astley Hall collection.

Astley Hall’s collection includes a portrait of Captain Charnock who was a previous owner of the Hall and was known as Captain One Eye after losing an eye in the Battle of Lathom during the English Civil War.

Another noteworthy portrait is one by the well-known artist John Everett Millais who was co-opted into the Royal Academy of Arts when he was just 11.

This portrait features William Carr Standish, a member of the famous Standish family and an ex-resident of Duxbury Hall.

There are also many paintings of members of the different families that used to live in Astley Hall including the Brooke family and the Townley-Parker family.

Coun Beverley Murray who has responsibility for Astley Hall at Chorley Council, said: “We are delighted and proud that people from all over the world can now view Astley Hall’s entire collection of oil paintings.

“This will give greater access to Chorley’s history.”

To view some of the paintings in person, Astley Hall and the Coach House gallery are open every Saturday and Sunday from noon until 4.30pm.

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