Thomas Miles Richardson (Junior) was born in Newcastle in 1813, the son of eminent landscape painter Thomas Miles Richardson (Senior). He was taught by his father and began his career based in his native Newcastle, first exhibiting at the age of fourteen and sending works to London for exhibition from 1832.
He was elected an associate member of the 'Old Water Colour Society' in 1843 and moved to London to further his career in 1846. He was elected a full member of the OWCS in 1851 and thereafter exhibited at both their summer and winter exhibitions every year until his death. He travelled widely in both Britain and Europe, painting extensively in Northern England and Scotland, as well as the French, Italian and Swiss alps. He was highly successful during his lifetime, commanding high prices for his works and arguably outstripping his Father's popularity as a landscape painter. He died in 1890, after several years of failing health, and after his death the contents of his studio were auctioned by Christie's in June of that year.
A large collection of his works is held by the Laing Art Gallery in Newcastle. Examples are also held by The V & A and Tate Britain in London and by The Art Gallery of New South Wales.
Greta Bridge is a hamlet in the North Pennines near to Barnard Castle, named after the stone bridge which forms the central subject of this painting. Built in 1773 and spanning the river Greta just south of its confluence with the Tees, it replaced an earlier bridge with supposedly Roman foundations. The bridge carried the main mail route from London to Carlisle and the hamlet once supported three coaching inns. One famous guest was Charles Dickens, who stayed for several nights in 1839 whilst researching 'Nicholas Nickleby' and mentioned the village in his novel. Greta Bridge was originally within the Historic County of the North Riding of Yorkshire, however in 1974 it was transferred to the control of County Durham.
The painting is monogrammed lower left. It is framed and glazed in what I assume to be the original gilt mount and frame. The mount is inscribed in black "Greta Bridge, Yorkshire".