John Constable born in East Bergholt (Higham’s next-door village) in 1776 was a British landscape painter in what became called the pragmatic tradition. Being born in Suffolk, he’s known for his landscape paintings of the Dedham Vale which enclosing his house, and so also became famous as”Constable Country”. His paintings include’Dedham Vale’ 1802,”Wivenhoe Park’ 1816 and’The Hay Wain’ 1821 as well as his paintings are one of the most precious and popular in British Art. He had an extreme affection for the place with said”I must paint my own areas finest, painting is but another phrase for sense”.
He died leaving a permanent imprint. Being designated an Area of Outstanding all-natural Beauty (AONB) from the Countryside Commission in 1969 was a vital milestone in recognising the tranquillity and natural beauty of this Vale, although even this official status doesn’t shield it from the constant onslaught of modernisation and growth widespread in other region of the nation. The Dedham Vale Society was founded in 1938 and continues to be battling for the security of the landscape, built heritage and wildlife.
While the great majority of East Anglia’s historical grasslands are emptied and invisibly over the centuries to make method for arable farming, thankfully the Vale has prevented this threat and retained its own rolling farmland, ancient woodland, meadows, villages and river to grow into one of England’s most cherished rustic landscapes.
Having a population of fewer than 10,000, the Valley is pleased while holding the desire for growth to keep its farming attributes. Constable would recognise his landscape now with the majority of his views still undamaged — the possessions in Higham of Idyllic Suffolk being a nice illustration painted in’Higham Village at 1804.
Constable Country Retreats
There are many cottages that were painted as part of John Constables work, which makes these cottages really special and hold a strong place in history, being referred to quite often as Constable Country Suffolk Holiday Cottages or even just Constable Country Retreats, with some of these being available for rental, allowing you to truly stay in a part of history!