Benjamin Brecknell Turner
'The Willowsway, Elfords, Hawkhurst'
Albumen print from paper negative
Museum no. PH.58-1982
© Victoria and Albert Museum, London
This view shows a lane of pollarded willows. Pollarding is a way of cutting back trees to promote growth of new, slim branches used for firewood, brooms or weaving into baskets. Willow is also used for making artist's charcoal. Turner's son recalled how, even in his father's skilled hands, making one exposure 'never took less than three quarters of an hour'. Turner made two other known negatives of this scene so he probably spent about two and a quarter hours here. The image places the viewer on the path, framed with willows either side, as a traveller approaching the gate.