An oil painting by renowned Bushey artist, Lucy Kemp-Welch, sold for £20,625 at an auction on Wednesday, more than double the £10,000 it had been expected to fetch.

The 20in by 24in picture, called Moment’s Rest, was exhibited in Paris in 1933 and at the Royal Academy, in London, in 1934.

On the back of the frame is a paper label which features - possibly in Lucy Kemp-Welch’s own handwriting - the artist’s name and Bushey address.

The painting was bought by a mystery bidder at Bonhams in London.

Lucy Kemp-Welch, a Bournemouth-born solicitor’s daughter, moved to Bushey in 1889 - at the age of 20 - to become a student there at the Herkomer School of Art.

She liked the village so much that she stayed the rest of her life.

She lived at Kingsley, 20 High Street, for more than half a century and in the early 1900s she was living there with her companion and fellow artist, Glasgow-born Elizabeth Hart.

Lucy Kemp-Welch died in hospital at Watford on November 27, 1958, at the age of 89.

During her lifetime she became one of the most accomplished painters of horses. In 1915 publishers JM Dent chose her to illustrate an edition of Black Beauty.

In her book, Kemp-Welch: The Spirit Of The Horse, author Laura Wortley wrote: "During the Boer War and the First World War Lucy became fascinated by cavalry horses, which she painted both on the battlefield and at exercise, earning her the friendship of Robert Baden-Powell (later Lord Baden- Powell, founder of the Boy Scouts), who provided her with Black Prince, the model for Black Beauty."

One day in Bushey a horse fell dead between the shafts of a cart and she made a careful sketch of the corpse for future reference.

When Sanger’s Circus came to Watford she was entranced and for several seasons she followed the circus recording life behind the scenes and in the ring.

The current world auction record for a painting by Lucy Kemp-Welch is £56,500, the sum paid at Christie’s in London on March 27, 1997, for her 1937 oil painting, The Lumber Team.