Ethel Atcherley, was born in Eccles, Lancashire on 30 January 1864. She was fourth child and second daughter of Roger and Mary Ann Atcherley. From an early age she was brilliantly creative, focusing on her passion for music and painting. As a teenager, in 1880, Ethel Atcherley was awarded Second Class Honours in her Local Examinations in Elementary Musical Knowledge. However, she decided to further her education in art studies and enrolled at Manchester School of Art.
She was there from at least 1885 as records show she won the school’s Sketching Club Prize Distribution on 13 January 1886. Although now known for her landscape work, Ethel Atcherley studied modelling alongside painting and in 1891 Manchester Art Gallery’s First Exhibition of Arts and Crafts displayed her sculpture Reduced Copy of ‘The Slave’ by Michelangelo. For the following few years of the early 1890s, Ethel Atcherley continued her training at Lambeth School of Art, and then in Paris. She specialised in watercolours and oils and most often depicted rustic scenes taking influence from the geography surrounding her. On her return to England in 1895, her work became increasingly recognized and the local press took interest. That same year, Ethel Atcherley’s paintings, including Anglesea Village, began to be exhibited at The Royal Academy of Arts. Meanwhile she was elected an Associate of Manchester Academy of Fine Arts in 1896 and in 1900 Ethel Atcherley was advanced to Member. Whilst The Royal Academy of Arts progressively exhibited her paintings, other major galleries including The Royal Society of British Artists and the Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool showed her work too. Ethel Atcherley died age 41 in 1905. Most of her work remains in family ownership.