Grimshaw spent a great deal of time in Scarborough during the 1870s, and depicted the town and the surrounding landscape in oil and watercolour. The present painting illustrates Yew Court, Scalby, named after its distinctive row of yew trees. It was in the garden at Yew Court that Grimshaw painted The Rector’s Garden: Queen of the Lilies (1877, Harris Museum and Art Gallery, Preston). Thomas Jarvis, for whom this painting was executed was a successful brewer in Scarborough and a keen supporter of Grimshaw's work. At the time the painting was made Grimshaw was living in a house known as Castle-by-the-Sea in Scarborough, which was rented from him. It is Jarvis who is generally credited with turning Grimshaw's work in a new direction and encouraging the artist to paint more moonlit scenes. A similar composition but with two figures and dated 1875 is at Scarborough Art Gallery.
For the other view of Yew Court painted by Grimshaw for Thomas Jarvis see lot 84.