New acquisition: 18th century portrait of a Bradford on Avon clothier


Filling a gap in Bradford on Avon’s collection relating to the woollen industry that made the town as it is today, the Museum has recently acquired this early eighteenth century oil painting of John Bailward (1677-1742). Bailward was a local man, from a Wingfield family, who was involved with the great clothier families at the time when west Wiltshire was the centre of fine cloth-making. The Bailwards were connected with Bradford, especially with Frankleigh House, until the late 1870s.

The painting was bought at auction with the assistance of a grant from a fund administered by the Victoria & Albert Museum in London. The painter is not known, but is likely to have been a follower of Jean-Baptiste Van Loo (1684-1745), who painted royalty and notables in England from 1737 to 1742.

Read more about John Bailward and his family.

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