Southwold Railway Trust Archive of Wenhaston

History Note #28: Harry Becker

History Note #28: Harry Becker
Some local history regarding this well-known painter

A well-known painter once lived in Wenhaston. He was Harry Becker. He was born in 1865, son of a doctor. He studied at the Royal Academy Schools in Antwerp and Paris and in 1906 won the Bronze Medal at the Milan International Exhibition. He had a studio in London, but in 1912 returned to Suffolk and lived in Wenhaston. Firstly in 1912 at Old Hall Farm, then in 1915 at Sunnyside and finally in 1921 at the Vicarage. In 1926 he moved to Hinton Lodge, Darsham, where he died in 1926.

While in Wenhaston he painted many pictures of local men going about their business in the fields, cutting hedges, mowing, gathering crops etc. There are inhabitants of our village that have on their walls paintings of their ancestors.

His daughter, Janet, was a well known local historian. She wrote a 12 page history of St Peter’s, Wenhaston in 1923. But her best production was her History of Blythburgh in 1935. She is remembered in that village by a plaque on the wall of the north aisle in Blythburgh church stating ‘In loving memory of Margaret Janet Becker who loved this church 1903 - 1953’. If one wishes to read her research notes they are kept at the Suffolk Record Office at Lowestoft.