Sven and the Stour

One of Sven Berlin’s favourite places to walk and to paint in his later years was along the River Stour near Cowgrove, Wimborne. The swans on the Stour were a favourite subject. Here, at Eye Bridge, his friend and correspondent, John Paddy Browne, photographed the artist and later wrote a comprehensive profile for Dorset, The County Magazine (No. 59, 1977).

John Paddy Browne also wrote a poem At Sturminster Marshall, a location a little further along the Stour recalling a peaceful rural moment as the cows arrived to drink. It can be found in his book Not Thinking Straight and begins…


“Each day at five o’clock

The cows come down.


A weir cuts the river

Where they drink

Out on a line, knee-deep on a man…”