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Astley Cheetham Collection
Brief History

The Astley Cheetham Art Collection is a remarkable small art collection.

John Frederick Cheetham (1835-1916) was part of a successful and wealthy family who built their fortune on cotton, owning Bankwood Mills in Stalybridge. The family, interested in politics and cultural activities, developed an art collection which included Italian Renaissance altar pieces, portraits from the 16th century and a good number of contemporary 19th century paintings and drawings, by artists such as David Cox and Burne-Jones.

Together with his wife, Beatrice Astley, John Cheetham, funded the building of Stalybridge Public Library and above it the space which is now Astley Cheetham Art Gallery. The art collection was bequeathed to the town of Stalybridge, after the death of Cheetham's sister in 1932.

Totally nearly 400 art works, paintings and drawings, the collection has grown from the original bequest with gifts from the National Art Collections Fund and the Contemporary Arts Society, throughout the twentieth century.

The collection is a public collection, owned and managed by Tameside Council.

Photograph of John Frederick Cheetham     Photograph of Beatrice Cheetham