An ash wooded hill

is how the town of Ashurst in the New Forest, Hampshire got its name.  A timber trade grew up around it and was first mentioned in 1317 in some court documents.   From Tudor times, timber was burnt for saltpetre, the raw material for gunpowder and tanning leather.  The railway arrived in 1847 and changed everything leading to expansion and growth of the small settlement of Ashurst. This is a photo taken about one hundred years ago of the approach to the station in Ashurst.

As well as the railway station Ashurst now boasts a campsite, shops, 3 pubs, 5 restaurants, a vet, an upholsterer, a Post Office, a newsagent, 2 hairdressers and a car dealer.  

It is also within the picturesque New Forest and close to Southampton.  Below is a typical scene in the New Forest.

I found my next watercolour in a local charity shop.  It is simply entitled ‘Near Ashurst’ and had been painted by David Shorter.  I can’t find out much about David except that he was a guest speaker at the Totton Art Society back in 2010.  Here is a rather blurry photo of him. 

And here is the watercolour: 

It’s very small, 10cm x 6cm, but rather a pretty little painting.