May Bettany

Benfleet in Colour

Only a small number have been located so far, but if you have any relating to Benfleet  and are prepared to let us take a digital image, please get in touch.

“Benfleet Creek” painted by May in 1950 with it’s threatening storm clouds is unlike her other  work, make certain you see her black and white pictures of Benfleet.

Cottage by the Creek?
Courtesy of Ken Turner
The Old manor house
Rear of old barn. High Road ( Hall Farm barn) 1950
Back of old building, Crown Hill, South Benfleet 1949

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  • I have very fond memories of May Bettany. I first met her as a Sea Wolf Cub at the age of 9 when I went to her plant-filled chocolate-box bungalow in St Mary’s Drive to earn my ‘Artist’s Badge’. She was very encouraging and I quickly joined her Thursday evening art classes where she taught me how to improve my drawing techniques and to paint in oils and watercolours.
    Whenever I catch a whiff of geraniums I am instantly transported back to those wonderful days.
    I am now in my late 60s and a retired teacher of Art and Graphic Design, I still paint in watercolour and occasionally exhibit. I will always be grateful to her for her kind patience and encouragement.

    By David Jiggens (07/01/2019)
  • As much as I like the watercolours on this page, May Bettany’s pen and ink drawings are exemplary, reminiscent of Frank Patterson, another great penman of her era. I am an artist now in Australia, but spent my early childhood in Benfleet, went to Benfleet Primary School, remember celebrating World War 2 victory party in Hope Road. I love the Benfleet site, it brings back so many memories. My grandad, Joe Barnes, used to pull a barrow down the High Street, collecting horse droppings for manure. My grandparents first lived in Rose Lodge at the top end of the High Street where it met the Tarpots Road. My Uncle Vic had the fishing tackle shop further down the High Street, I could ramble on. I wonder if anyone remembers me!

    By Don Thompson (24/11/2013)
  • My Mother was very friendly with May Bettany who would visit our house because my Father was interested in painting and she gave my Mother a painting of Magnolias, which I believe my Mother took to Spain when she moved there after the death of my Father. I shall now have a look amongst the items I brought back from Spain to see if I still have it.

    By Colinmac (05/03/2013)

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