This work shows a rural scene with a dirt road bordering a creek, trees, cattle and fence rails against a backdrop of a rocky outcrop.
The 'Victorian Gazetteer' for 1864 describes Sunbury's scenery, particularly near the creek, as very romantic and picturesque, greatly admired by tourists and much appreciated for picnics and pleasure excursions. After construction of the train line between Melbourne and Bendigo in 1859–62, Sunbury became a favourite excursion for Melbourne's growing population.
Its landscape also became accessible for Gritten, who suffered from poor health throughout his life and chose to paint urban views or the semi-rural fringes of colonial towns. At Sunbury, Gritten found a landscape whose qualities were entirely suited to his picturesque style.
The Sunbury area was settled very soon after the first colonists reached Melbourne. Brothers William and Samuel Jackson occupied small farm holdings in the area from July 1836, and named the place Sunbury after the English town in the Thames valley.