Art & Culture

LS Lowry painting will remain in Salford after fetching £7.8m at auction

Great news for Greater Manchester.

Daisy Jackson Daisy Jackson - 20th October 2022

An LS Lowry painting depicting people attending a football match has sold at auction for £7.8m.

The beloved 1953 artwork has been saved by the Salford theatre and gallery that shares the artist’s name.

The Lowry successfully bid to buy and keep Going to the Match, where it will remain on public display with The Lowry Collection.

It’s been part of The Lowry’s display since 2000, when it arrived as a loan by owners the Professional Footballers Association.

Once the PFA decided to sell the painting, there was no guarantee that the new owners would ensure it would be free to access for the public.

Salford Quays and The Lowry. Credit: Unsplash

The painting shows crowds of people milling towards a football ground and has been praised for capturing a ‘quintessentially Northern experience’.

The purchase was made possible by the support of The Law Family Charitable Foundation.


Julia Fawcett OBE, CEO of The Lowry, said: “We firmly believe that this iconic artwork must remain on public view, so it can continue to be seen by the broadest possible audiences, for free.

“This evening, thanks to an incredibly generous gift from The Law Family Charitable Foundation, we are delighted to have purchased the painting for the city’s collection of LS Lowry works.

“We look forward to bringing it home to Salford, where it can continue to delight and attract visitors to the Andrew and Zoë Law galleries at The Lowry.


“A great deal of work has been needed to make this intervention possible – I’d like to thank Andrew and Zoë Law, our Chair Sir Rod Aldridge, Salford’s City Mayor Paul Dennett and our Trustees for all of their support.”

Andrew Law said: “Zoë and I are delighted to have facilitated The Lowry’s purchase of Going to the Match. This LS Lowry painting belongs in Salford on public view, close to his birthplace, where he was educated and where he lived.

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“Place matters. LS Lowry’s depiction of people attending a football match is just one of his many incredible genres of work, but it is undoubtedly his most iconic.”

Paul Dennett, Salford’s City Mayor, said: “LS Lowry, Salford’s greatest and most iconic artist, made his name depicting working-class life – as such we emphatically believed Going to the Match should remain on public view free to access where everyone can see it.


“I am delighted our campaign to save this critical and important painting has successfully resulted in The Lowry securing it tonight, for the city of Salford in perpetuity for generations to come, for residents and visitors to our great City.”

Featured image: Supplied