A to D




I would like to start by saying what a fantastic site you have put together, I noticed that there was a comment from Henry Morgan, I bought Henry's book for my mother, it filled in a lot of blanks regarding her family. My mother lived with her Grandparents Mrs Sarah Jane & Eli Hill and her parents at 4 bk 46 Aberdeen Street. Sarah Jane lost two sons during the 1st World War namely William and Frederick. The world is a small place as I was researching the family history I came by Henry's book by accident and it tells us that his father Harry was in fact Frederick's best friend. I could go into more details if you need it.
With kind regards
Sarah Maher


This is the caravan that my dad built in Aberdeen Street the old gent standing by the caravan was my dads father, he lived in Heath Street. the other picture is my dad, Norman Cyril Wilson standing by the caravan just after he had finished building it the last picture was taken in the Qeens Head pub in Aberdeen Street, from left to right
Doris Haddon my aunt , Lilly Hicken, another aunt, my mom Edna Wilson
and my Nan Lizy Cotteril, who died at the age of 102 , they were all from Aberdeen St.
Malcolm Wilson 


My friend down Cornwall sent me this picture, of his brother & sister taken in is garden, he was  one of the lucky ones we only had a back yard. the house was just up the road from me, looking at the picture the gap between the houses was a lock up yard, and that is where my dad built a caravan from scatch. I remember the chasis being delivered, and he got me up there helping to paint it, I used to stand there for hours and hours holding side frames and panels, it seem to take years but when he managed to finish the roof, and we could work inside things got a lot better, my dad was a good carpenter in his spare time so he made all the fixtures, fittings beds ect. When he eventually fished it, it was painted cream & green, I remember a lot of the people close by watching as it was towed away down to Evesham by the river where we would spend week ends and holidays fishing. I will try and get a picture of the caravan from my sister.
Malcolm Wilson

 Ray and sister Maureen in their garden at No 27 Aberdeen Street


I managed to find this old picture, I think we were about seven or eight at the time, there were cowboys around the green even in them days.
The picture shows from left to right Kenny Williams one of my best mates who now lives in Loe Cornwall, Johnny Haddon my cousin, Robert Chislin another old mate and myself Malcolm Wilson, the picture was taken out side number 32 Aberdeen Street, I  will try and find more pictures.
Malcolm Wilson

I lived in Aberdeen Street for about 17 years, my name is Malcolm Wilson, I lived at number 151 which was down the bottom end towards Winson Green, we were the last house on the left .my uncle and aunt lived next door there name was Lilly & Butch Hickin, another uncle lived up the back yard their name was May and George Brawn, further up the road by the gardens, last gully before the bomb building was another uncle and aunt there name was Doris and George Haddon and last of all was my Nan and Grandad Lizey and Harry Cotteral they lived at 1 back of 35 the entry was facing Jones shop, I will never forget my time down the Green, some of the best memories were down there, I live in Staffordshire now I have been there since 1965 I am happily married with two sons and a daughter, we also have 7 grand children.
If anyone knows the whereabouts of Edward Green better known as Teddy it would be great if you could post it on the site, he also lived down the same yard as my Nan & Grandad.
 Malcolm Wilson


I have looked at your website, great, thanks for all of your work. I have also bought your book, Winson Green to Brookfields, prompted by an article in the Sunday Times about Black Patch Park & Charlie Chaplain. Again, excellent book, thanks.
On your website Aberdeen Street is featured. The first photo is of terraced houses with a Ford Cortina estate car & a Hillman Hunter estate car parked outside. On the arched entry gateway is a sign.......... CAR-NEEDS & ACCESSORIES, which was sign written by me as a young student. I was brought up in James Turner Street, Winson Green & was lucky enough to attend Moseley Secondary School of Art & then attend Birmingham College of Arts & Crafts. I was taught signwriting at school & used to earn pocket money by hand painting signs for small firms or shops. Idoubt if the skill still exists as everything seems now to be printed onto self adhesive labels. I can't remember the man's name who ran that business, but he manufactured open top car hoods & sidescreens etc. in his small workshop through these gates.
I hope that this will be of some interest to you,
Best wishes    Ralph Carpenter

81 years ago, I was born to a Brummy couple - Harry and Lizzie Morgan in Aberdeen Street. They were part of large families also in that area, Harry with five brothers (Jack-Frank-Walter-Joseph-and Frederick and three sisters Elizabeth - Polly - Amelia).Lizzie (Elizabeth) was a Rogers with two sisters - Louisa - and Ellen (Nell). and brothers William - James - Harry - John - and Jack.Lizzie and Harry had two children - Arthur and Elizabeth (Betty) (Arthur was me, and my dear sister was Betty)
When dad came out of the army (1918 war) they rented a house in Aberdeen street, but when Betty was born
they needed more space. He then moved in with his father to "Little" Peel Street and at that time the rest of both families were in either Aberdeen St. or "Big" Peel Street. I was born in "Little" Peel St. in Dec. 1929. Dad was a Metal Spinner, with "Swan Brand" (Bulpits). Having had enough of that, he followed his spare time occupation of Barman at the Queens Head, in Aberdeen Street, (Mr and Mrs Billingsly) and we left the Green to take over a pub named the "Woodbine Stores" in Washington Street ( near 5 ways). This was only for 6 months, as this quaint little place was to be sold by the brewery, Mitchell's and Butlers. What happened to it I never knew, but with that experience, it remains in my memory forever! It was the strangest, most extraordinary, endearing little pub I have ever had the delight of living in. The war was now on and many things happened.
By this time we had notice that alterations to the next pub had been fully completed and at the instructed time
we packed up once more, to leave and occupy The Wellington Inn, Small Heath. Harry was now a Manager. On the corner of Muntz St. and Dawson St. we spent the whole time of the war. me now back at a school and Betty just old enough for a job at the "Court Steam Laundry". She started as filing clerk and worked through to Insurance and tax department. There were many things going on and I hope to include them in the next book that I am now working on.. I have in fact published one that was built up from notes in books left by my father. This is about his duties and activities in France. I named it "Our Harry's War" and it sells through a number of sources,(though it is a very restricted market as publishers cannot make enough profit on WW1 to justify the expenditure).Henry Morgan


I have just discovered your wonderful site, what a gem! It not only brought back memories but I have discovered a photo of the Bird in Hand Pub in Aberdeen St which I believe my great grandfather, (Ernest) Arthur Mason, was the Landlord of way back in the early 1900's. I hadn't been able to find any info on this pub before so this was special. I have made contact with two people via email and eagerley await their replies which hopefully will contain some further information for my family tree research. I have read a message from Beryl Raine (nee Wilcox) and would love to contact her but there was no email address - any idea how I can get hold of her?
The family names I am researching are Mason and Hill. My grandparents lived at 93 Aberdeen Street and I well remember back in the early 1950's spending many happy days there, especially the baths in front of the fire because they didn't have a bathroom! I was quite horrified when they had one put in their back bedroom as this meant no more baths in front of the fire. I believe it was the first bathroom in the street and many of the neighbours came round to admire it! My late mother, Edna Rachel Hill, lived in Aberdeen Street for many years.
If there is anyone out there who has any information I would love to hear from you.
Shirley Lloyd, Perth, Western Australia.


My name is George Layton I lived at 7/31 Aberdeen Street (next to the bomb site) from 1941 till 1960 in the yard lived  the Turners they lived at number 2/31, Brian Turner was my best man, I would love to hear from him and anyone who lived there around that time. I have many fond memories of my time there and look forward to hearing from anyone who came from our yard or anyone who knew me.
 Love the web site thanks for it.   Kind Regards George Layton

 7/31ABERDEEN St. 05/07/1972 just before demolition

Photos of my fathers family in Aberdeen Street, Winson Green. The photographs were taken upto WW2.
Regards  Keith Acton (son of Alfred Acton: Aberdeen Street)

Photograph taken of my grandfather Herman W. Read and my mother, Marion (Twycross) Read outside his house 129 Aberdeen Street during the celebrations of King George V's Silver Jubilee in 1935. In the background is a Mitchell' s and Butler's pub called the "Bird in Hand", the painted sign is not very clear on this photograph, but I can assure any reader that may be interested in "Back Street Pubs" that it is readable on the original when enlarged.
I would be more than interested if any reader knows the history of this establishment. Malcolm Read Email:

Malcolm lived at 1/102 Aberdeen Street and went to Barford Road School

Photograph of Aberdeen Street looking towards Peel Street on the left, with the Childrens Welfare surgery on the corner from Malcolm Read. 

At the "Tower Ballroom" Edgbaston reservoir 1955-60
From left to right: John ( Froggy) Freer, John Howes, John Morton, Malcolm Read (myself), David Longstaff and John Robinson.

Back row kneeling: first one see below, Tony Parkes (face part hidden) the lad standing is not identified see below.

What is known, the first lad kneeling was a painter and decorator, who lived on the opposite side of the road to the "Malt Shovel" pub in Tudor Street, I think his christian name was Allan. The lad standing worked with David Longstaff in the Jewelery Quarter.
Photograph supplied by Malcolm Read. Email:


Photos of my mom and dad, Fred and Doris Hitchen my nan and my aunt and us kids.







MAUREEN in the middle age 14, dressed up to go to the Lacano with PAT my brother JOHNS girlfriend and PADDY taken in Aberdeen Street 1967

My aunt

Mr Dyer he lived at136 Aberdeen Street

Mom and dad, Fred and Doris Hitchen, used to live at 132 Aberdeen Street when I was growing up in the sixties. My nan Alice Temby  also lived in Aberdeen Street at no.127 

My aunt Jean Brookes she lived at no 1 Lansdown Street photographed on her wedding day to Steve Gracie in the sixties.  If anyone does remember us and wants to get in touch please do 

Email youngjackie55@



We moved to Aberdeen St when I was about fourteen and lived at No26 a couple of doors away from Johnny Dunkley, I had a mate called Billy Wylman from round the corner in Peel St, we all used to knock about in the Route 66 Cafe across the road from the Smiths Arms, great days sadly missed.
Chris price  Email:

I was Maureen Hitchen before I got married, does anyone remember me from Aberdeen St, we used to live two doors away from Jones shop. I went to Barford Rd School, City Rd, Summerfield, Handsworth New Rd, I left the street in 1969.
I remember Trevor Davis he lived in the Acorn Pub, Steven Benson.bottom of Aberdeen St, Susan Grincell, Pat Poole, lots more. it was the best years of my life living in Aberdeen Street
Thank You .Maureen Perks  Email:

I lived at 132,Aberdeen St  for 11 years my Nan lived a couple of doors away at 127 Aberdeen St. my mother's name was Doris Hitchen and father's name was Fred Hitchen. Dad had a bad lip. always in the pubs, my aunt lived at No 1 Landsdown St. I had then 2 brothers John and Freddie. myself Maureen Hitchen and Jackie. I knew all the streets as I used to hang around them in the sixties I used to go to the same school as Gary Smith. At this moment I can not find any photo's, I can remember Jones shop one door away from us. by the big opening. we used to have lots of bon-fire's.Them were the days.
Maureen Perks  Email:

My Sister has Put Her Story In About Aberdeen Street,132.
Well As She Said Our Aunt Lived At 1 Lansdowne Street, And Our Nan Alice Tenby Lived At 127 Aberdeen Street,our father was a coal man, he liked to drink his name was fred hitchen, (freddie to his friends) Our Mom Doris Worked At Bulpits. Our Dad Suffered From Polio He Had A Limp. Our Father Kept Getting Into Trouble Off Our Mom Cause Of The State He Came Home In There Were Arguement.We All Ducked.
Dad Had A New Lad Work With Him One Day He Would Turn Up In Pure White T Shirts, (To Deliver Coal) He Became Very Famous His Name Was Pat Roach.
Because Of My Moms Temper He Nicked Named Her The Blonde Bombshell. We Didn't Have A Lot of Anything But I Always remember thing with fondest memories And always Will

Aberdeen Street. I have already made a comment in Bryant Street with regards to my mom, dad and sister. But my grandmother lived in 24 Aberdeen Street with two of her daughters. Her name was Florence Green Her daughters were Ena and Barbara. She also had 3 sons and 2 other daughters Florrie and Lily (my mom). Her sons names wee Geoff, Eric and Frank. Where they lived the gardens were in the front of the houses,and included a bomb shelter where Ena kept her gardening tools. I was nearly born in this shelter after and air raid. The toilets were down the back. and were shared with another family and you had to take the key with you it was a long trek in the winter. I now live in Australia and believe that these houses no longer exist. I remember a bomb site to the right of the houses as you faced them and this was our playground. My uncle Geoff, aunt Ruth, cousins Brian and Collin also lived in the same block.
Frances Sheen Nee Mason  Email:

My family lived in Aberdeen Street for over fifty years.
My Grandparents used to keep the old Queens Head Pub which was opposite Stringers fruit and vegetable shop. The old pub was demolished in 1936 and the new Queens Head was built in 1937.
What wonderful times we had as children we could play out in the street and the only danger was the horse and cart and neighbors who shouted at us to play down our own end.
We would go on charanbanc trips and have song sheets to sing all the way to the seaside and sleep on the way back. I remember Mr.Jenns who kept the grocery shop and Mrs.Hill who lived next to my mother and father, and Mr&Mrs.Shorthouse who also kept a Grocery & sweetshop and their daughters Betty and June.
Very happy days.  from Beryl Raine (Wilcox)

 So glad we found this site. Both my parents are from Winson Green dad (Raymond williams)was born in Aberdeen St, and mom (JuneWood) was born in Bellefield Rd. If anyone remembers them please get in touch.
 Mom would love to hear from anyone with new's of Dorothy Palmer who's married name is Kane..


I spotted a letter on your site from Ian Thorpe in Ausraliia regarding a Bill Thomas who owned a pet shop on Lodge Road. I used to work for Bill Thomas and his son who was also known as Bill even though his name was Robert. I used to be a truck driver for them for about 15 years at the firm which was called Thomas and Guest and was in Abberley Street, Winson Green.At the time I also lived in Abberley Street but am originally from Talbot Street.The reason I'm writing is because the letter from Ian Thorpe dates from 2002 and I cannot get a reply from him on his e-mail number. I suppose over the years he may have changed it so I was hoping you could put this on your site in the hope that he might see it. I also wrote to you a couple of weeks ago regarding Wal Bannister who used to live at my old address in Talbot Street and you put a note on your site for me but as yet have still had no reply. Still, I can but hope.
Thanking you again, Bob Shale Email:


ABBEY STREET 15/12/2013
My name is Ronald Sutton I am now 58yrs old and have two sisters Linda who is now 65yrs old and Edith who is 67yrs.
I was born at 7/59 Abbey Street Hockley later we moved up the hill to number 24 Abbey Street by Strawbridge’s the Blacksmiths, my Father worked for Foundry Flux on Park Road Hockley.
Yours Faithfully
Ronald Sutton

Two photos thanks to Ron Sutton Mrs Edith Sutton and Mrs Powell knitting in 7/59 Abbey Street Hockley also known as Brighton Place  the other picture was taken around 1961 in the yard             ( Brighton Place )

 ABBEY STREET 13/10/09
I was born at Dudley Road hospital in 1953 and lived in Abbey Street untill
1970. my dad had the blacksmiths forge and with his father used to shoe the
horses for Scribans Bakery also any barge horses that used to be walked down from the canal basin in
Lodge Road. I went to school at All Saints and Handswoth New Road. Found your web site       fantastic.
Ken Strawbridge

What a fantastic site, I am Ann Nottle formerly Monaf. It is my class in the picture of the All Saints Christmas play. We lived in Abbey Street from around 1953 and were probably the first mixed race family in the area. Maureen Kemp and I who is also in the picture went on to George Dixon grammar school and then to live in Cornwall together and are still in touch. I am contacting my brother to see if he has any old pictures of the area.
Kind regards, Ann Nottle nee Monaf

If anyone lived in Abbey St, Hockley l would love to hear from you.This is in respect of my family history project.  From the mid 1850s till circa 1880 my g/grandparents raised a family of ten children in No 36 Abbey St, by coincidence in the mid 60s l worked for G/G/Lloyd in Park Rd as a driver,  they owned a house in Abbey St about a third up on the left from Park Rd which l often went into.This was long before l began genealogy so l had no idea of its prominence, l can't recall the internal layout and l just wish l had been into photography then. Basically l would like to imagine the conditions a family of twelve would have living in a smallish terraced house Even better if anyone has photographs of these houses or Street pre-redevelopement l would love to see them.

Pete Ellis              Email:

ABBEY STREET 05/02/03 and 10/02/04                                                                                          I was born at 4/35 Western Grove, Abbey Street  in 1947,
My brothers and sisters all attended
All Saints School, Handsworth New Road (Girls), and Icknield Street Schools.
We were one of the lucky families we had our own loo (outside), but it was ours!
DOES ANYONE remember the Outdoor run by Marge Lackey ???
WHAT ABOUT the Pawn Shop and the Cobblers?
REMEMBER knock door run?, skipping?, British bulldog?
and playing cricket in the `Horse Road`?
We used to play for hours in the street, safely.  OH what times we had!
Jacqueline Perry (CARNELL)   Email:

This photo was taken in the early 60`s, its my Mom Dot Carnell, sitting in the front garden of 4/35 Abbey Street.
We lived up a grove in ABBEY STREET, there were 5 houses, we all had 3rooms down and 3 rooms up, and our own seperate toilets! But a lot of the houses were back to back,with just one room and a scullery and 2 rooms up stairs and had to share toilets with other families.I had a friend whose family lived at the back of the cobblers shop and they had four children!                              Jackie(carnell)Perry  Email:

ABBEY STREET     19/07/02
Just a few names to stir memories Steven Earl, Paul Sale, Paul Tierney, Keith Higgins (his Dad had the greengrocers in Crabtree Rd)
An old lady I loved who had a dog called Jack, I used to call her Granny Brookes, I was told she would have a drink at the pub ( or offlicence I'm not sure) every day like clockwork until she died when she was well over 100 years old.
My grandfather Bill Thomas had the pet shop on Lodge Road, Near the prison. I was born in Dudley Road Hospital in 1948. I also lived in Abbey Street just off Lodge Road, Not far from Scribbans Bakery. Now I live in South Australia a seaside town called Christies Beach. I was elated when I stumbled on your web site.
P.S. I used to go to a youth club called the Stonehouse Gang that met in Camden St school.
 from Ian Thorpe Email:
(Does anybody else remember this club meeting there?)


ALLENS ROAD  (Avon Place) 06/05/08
Avon Place was a cul-de-sac, situated off Allens Road, only had four houses, occupied during the war by the Jakemans, Sheppard, and Haywoods. On the corner was Vickers Grocery shop (later Parkers). At the far end, near the railway was the local A.R.P 'Command Post', which was taboo to us kids!! inside was a bench, shelf or table, a telephone, buckets of sand and stirrup pumps, to be used with the buckets of water which hung on brackets between the bay windows in Allens Rd. A row of houses, LIME GROVE, which I think belonged to Great Western Railway, ran alongside the embankment and the families that lived there were mainly employed by the railway....Davies, Potter, Williams, Bache, Bates etc. These houses had a reasonable front garden, where most grew vegetables, and also a backyard that overlooked the main Birmingham to Wolverhampton line.(now the metro). An excellent place to view the trains and as kids each year we would get our new 'reference book' from the Scout shop in Dale End with all GWR train names and numbers in...King , Manor, Duke Classes Tankers and even 'Dudley Dashers', we would carefully underline each train 'spotted'. These were our treasured possessions. Opposite Lime Grove was a narrow passage that led into the 'Big Yard' and from there up the steps onto Benson Rd. Yes, Avon Place was an ideal place to play cricket, football, learn to cycle and at the end of the war to hold our parties and Street Bonfires.
Derek Weston

Photos taken in 1948 in Avon Place , Brian Jeffries and Derek Weston, in the background, Nos.22 & 24 Allens Rd. where Pat and Maureen Hodgson and their grandfather Alfred Bird lived.

This photo is of the Birmingham City Transport Cricket Team 1929
(Hockley Bus Depot ..Whitmore St.)
Bill HAYWOOD of Avon Place, Allens Rd. is in the front row. Rt.
Derek Weston

ALLENS ROAD 25/12/07
My Grandfather Albert Ernest Bird lived in Allens Road most of his life and my Auntie lived next door for most of her life. I remember as a child travelling on the train from Snow Hill to Soho & Winson Green train station, 3 stops, with my Mom and Dad to visit them. In more resent years I had a partner whose parents lived in the same area so we used to visit various 'Clubs' at Christmas etc.
I would love to know more about him and where he lived.
Therese Hobson  EMAIL:

ALLENS ROAD 17/05/07
I was born in Allens Rd. in 1937, I remember the war years, in particular Big Nellie Riley, who manned the Soho & Winson Green Railway Stn. on her own. She was the one everyone called upon to do the 'mans jobs', like moving furniture or replacing blown out windows etc. My aunt (Haywoods) lived in Avon Place, next to the railway line. They had a 'Morrison' shelter in the front room, and my mother and I would run down the back entry (Lime Grove) when the 'siren' went. I remember 'Garfitts' the little corner newsagents, Yeomans the butchers, Clarks or Jeffries the greengrocers, where we queued for our first banana. In 1945, we had a party at the methodist hall, Benson Road. See Photo. In the photo, are most of the 'kids' from the Benson Rd area....The Corbets, Lees, Tompkins, Winkles,Cooper, Cox, Gaffney, Jeffries, Adams, Spillers, Whittle, Ball, Steeles, Perfect, Law, and many I can't recall the names of. My Gran (Williams) also lived in Benson Rd. opposite Harding St. I remember Greasleys the sweet shop and a shop we referred to as 'up the steps'. When I got married my Best Man was Joe Clark, lived at the old cafe, next to railway bridge. During the war, my mother worked at Setten & Durwards, making cartridge cases, later at Cheneys in Factory Rd.
I am now retired, after serving in the Fire Service for 30 yrs. covering the Handsworth, Aston, and other Birmingham areas.
 Best Wishes to all old Winson Greeners.
Derek Weston, E-mail :

ALLENS ROAD ...The 'old' end, 06/06/07
Now completely disappeared, had 'Fords' the bakers on the corner with Bacchus Rd.(before they moved to Benson Rd. near Park Rd.). As I lived opposite the bakery, as a child I would wake up to the smell of newly baked bread, and when purchasing a loaf, we always selected the 'burnt' one and would have picked off most of the crust before getting it home!.
Halfway down the road (opposite Avon Place) was Thorntons the 'outdoor' and from 6 oclock onwards, people would be seen entering and emerging with large jugs covered with a 'teatowel', and a bottle of stout for the 'missus'! to settle in for the night before the siren went..........Avon Place (a small cul-de-sac) had the A.R.P. wardens hut at the far end, but was where you could play cricket and football and still keep a look-out for the local bobby! It was a safe place because one could 'escape' either up Lime Grove or through the gully into the 'Big Yard' and out into Benson Road. The waste paper box or the 'pig bin' were convenient goal posts or wickets.
ALLENS ROAD (the 'new' end) was a cul-de-sac with the houses at the end known as 'The Triangle' and if you were careful you could sneak down the 'entry' to the back of the houses. It was an ideal place to 'catch train numbers' as GWR and LMS both converged at this point.
At the end of the war, a large bonfire was 'lit' in 'Old Allens' in the middle of the road to celebrate, it was so fierce that all the paintwork was burned or blistered on the doors and windows of adjacent houses, but no-one seemed to care. Many names spring to mind from that era...Desmond Woolridge, Norman Bickley,Brian & Barry Jeffries, Joan Pitt, Sheila Corcoran, Pat Hodson, Silvia Beddall and many more - a time when both sexes seemed to intergrate at play more than they do now. Many memories from the area during the 40s and 50s. Sadly the old roads gone now, they call it progress.
 Derek Weston, E-mail :


AVERY ROAD  ( this road is just inside Smethwick ) 10/02/07
I used to live in Avery Road I used to play with my brother in Black Patch Park.
My mother used to work at Avery's as a cleaner.
I went to Foundry Lane Infant and Junior schools and later Handworth Girls School.

AVERY ROAD10/03/03
I left Handsworth New Road school 1949 we lived in Avery Rd. I delivered papers all round the Green 7 days a week night & morning for 7/6d  from a little shop opposite the prison.
A lot of good times & some not so good.                                                                                          Alan Aston Email:

AVERY ROAD and the Merry Hill area.  22/09/03                                                                            My mom (Lydia Coley from Rowley Regis born in 1921) lived in Murdock Road with my Aunt, sister and where I grew up as a child in the 1960's up to 1978 when Murdock Road was eventually knocked down.
Mom remembers this photo, the pub was the Soho Tavern and Hawkers were the original owners of the Cafe next door when mom was a little girl in the 20's. Next to the cafe was a house and next to that was St. Johns Mission, followed by six more houses. Avery's the scale making company was opposite the Soho Tavern. On the opposite side of Avery Road was the row of shops between Avery Road and Murdock Road. There was a Grocery shop, Tobacconist next door, then a dress shop, next to that was the greengrocers,followed by a shop that sold books and cards, then a cooked meat shop, next to that was a butchers  on the corner of Murdock Road and Foundry Lane.
At the top of Murdock Road there was a farm (it was like a farm, he had pigs, chickens and all sorts) that farm ran along from Murdock Road to Avery Road. Mr Brooks was the tenant of the farm and he was the only one in Murdock Road who had a car 1930's. All the houses in Murdock and Avery Road were tenanted some by the gypsies (Smiths, Claytons - Murdock Road Avery Road - Loveridges, Shepherds, Pettifers who were the gypsy families) The land lord was Mr Taylor who owned the whole of Murdock Road, except the farm. The rent at the time for mom's house was about 4/6d. One side of Avery Road was owned by Avery's themselves, mainly they were for their workers and the later they were just let out.
Mom could go on and on, but would it be of interest to you? The sort of things she remembers are what school was like, War time work, Murdock Road being bombed the end of Murdock Road etc   Andrew Leigh

**************************************************************************************************ANNE ROAD 04/05/2015 (just over the border in Smethwick)
We found this photo whilst clearing out the house of my dad's cousin, Edna Harris.
We believe it shows the Clifford Williams factory in Ann Road during WW2, but we're not sure of the occasion.
My dad's aunt Florence Harris (nee Teague) worked at Clifford Williams before and after the war, but wasn't there when this photograph was taken.
I'd be very interested to hear if anyone recognises a relative or knows what the occasion was.
Best Wishes
Dave Mann


BACCHUS ROAD 04/05/2015
I thought I would send this photo of the City Laundry Bacchus Road, it was taken in 1976 when I worked there I'm at the front (glasses and rust coloured boots) and my future and still hubby at the back (the one with the straggly beard.It was taken at the retirement of our manageress Mrs Lees, my name was Susan Lawton and I married Mick Curry we, moved to Telford after we married. I remember a few faces like Jeanie Bates and Bridie Hands.
It would be nice if anyone recognises themselves or anyone on the photo and gets in touch.  Susan Curry

BACCHUS ROAD18/10/2014
I lived in Bacchus Road from 1950 to 1957. My parents ran the shop on the corner of Allens Road, no 135. It was called H. Jones after my father. I went to Benson Road school and remember Miss Legge, Miss Dumelow and Mr Evans. There was Mrs Moore's drapers shop on the opposite corner of Allens Road. My name was Hazel Jones and my Friends were Carol Williams, Francis Comery, Rita Day to name a few. In the school holidays we would pack sandwiches and lemonade and walk to Black Patch Park. Or on Sundays mum and dad would walk us to Handsworth park. I went back to look at the area a few years ago. The old shop is now a house and the whole place looks so shabby.
Hazel Penn

BACCHUS ROAD 15/09/2013 and 01/10/2013

The original "Cottage Baths" in Bacchus Road

I lived on Bacchus Rd. from 1964-1982 with my parents and two sisters
 We lived in the caretakers lodge which came with my dads job as engineer.
 He worked in the boiler house & repaired machines in the laundry. Mom worked in the clinic.
They remained there until dad retired & the laundry & Clinic closed down & was then demolished
The Old Cottage baths were separate to our buildings.
Our buildings ran from the corner of Benson Road to just past the bottom of Markby Road. Then shops, then Cottage baths.
We know that our house (caretakers lodge) was built in 1876. We moved in in July 1965, at which time the Cottage baths were still open. Mom thinks they closed around 1967 and stood empty for quite a while before being demolished.
My dad Stephen Campbell worked in the boiler house and repaired & maintained the machines in the laundry. It was run by the Public Health dept. when we moved in but then changed to Social Services. The laundry manager was called Dora Lees.
My mom Dorothy(Dot) Campbell worked in the clinic.The boss was Dennis Spencer. Patients were referred by their GP for treatment for head lice and scabies.
In 1993 mom was moved to Montague Street when Bacchus road clinic closed down. The building remained standing.
When dad retired in 1997 the laundry was still up and running.
Mom said the council came in regularly and took pictures of everyone at work, but they never saw the photos.
I have a few photos of family with buildings in the background, let me know if you want to see them.
I hope this is of some interest to you,

Kind Regards
Susan Barnacle nee Campbell

BACCHUS ROAD 22/06/2013                                                                                                      I've recently returned from a memorial pilgrimage tour to Normandy to commemorate the 69th anniversary of the D-Day landings. When I was attending the Airborne Service of Remembrance at Ranville Airbourne Cemetary i visited the grave of John Shrimpton. His battalion [ 8th] were attacking a German strongpoint at Annebault, Normandy on the day he died. I recalled a conversation I had with my father, John Holloway, over 40 years ago when he told me that he went to school with John Shrimpton. They were both in the same class with my father's twin brother James at Handsworth New Road. I believe the Shrimpton family lived in Bacchus Road, our family lived around the corner in Lodge Road. I also remember a lady called Edith Shrimpton living locally when I was a child there in the 1950's.

I wondered whether anyone else had any other information or know of any more
Winson Green's war heroes.

 James Holloway

BACCHUS ROAD 29/04/2012
I am trying to find any information about the coucil run laundry on Bacchus Road almost opposite Willis Rd, I was bought up in Willis Rd and then Markby Rd,my mom and dad ran the off licence in Markby Rd from the late 1960s to 1978.
I worked at the laundry in the mid to late 70s met my hubby there, we used to do laundry for the council run nurseries and some homes the manageress was a Mrs Lees and then a Mrs Caney the other part of the building was used to treat people with infectious diseases such as scabies, I would like to find out more as to why it closed and what happened to it and some of the folks that worked there.
Hoping you can help.
Susan Curry

BACCHUS ROAD 26/03/2011

This picture was taken in Bacchus Road. Joan Moylan is seen leading the anniversary parade from St Chrysostom's Church about 1947.

Our  thanks to Joan Moylan for the Picture

BACCUS ROAD & Allen's Road 30/03/2011
 In the background you can see the spire of Benson Road School, the occasion 1937 coronation fancy-dress parade can anyone help with names?                                         photo by JOAN MOYLAN she's the little girl second from the left front row.


Both photographs were taken at the VJ party located near the railway bridge in Bacchus Road (Niniva Road end) in1945  
Many thank to Margaret Moylan for supplying the photos.


Does anyone remember the Children’s Nursery on Bacchus Road I went there in the late 50’s and if I remember correctly the head was Ms/Mrs Brown who had a little black sausage dog (dachund). We used to have to queue up in the morning for a spoonful of castor oil…… least I think it was castor oil before we had our bottle of milk. We were made of sturdy stuff in those days!!!

Ann Gallagher



I was very interested in Colins recollections of Bacchus Road, especially the 'penny pick' shop on the corner of Leanard Street, 'The Grapes' public house, known locally as 'The Jolly Bacchus'. But there were more shops further down towards Nineveh Rd., a newsagents, a woman that sold everything connected with sewing and knitting, a greengrocers and ironmongers etc. Opposite,on the corner of Park Rd. was a building that was privately occupied but looked like it could have been an old public house, can anyone remember it?? Also , why was the road called 'Bacchus', I can't find any reference to a vineyard or winemaking!!! but maybe with its close vicinity to Hockley Brook, this may have happened in the past.! Finally, who were, Benson, Allen, Talbot, Harding, Willis, Preston, Musgrave etc....where they prominent men from the 19th. century, or perhaps reputable employees of Matthew Bolton.?? Somebody may know. Derek Weston



Bacchus Road should be recognized in History, for the contribution it played in the formation of Winson Green Community offering all shopping facilites & Services to residents north of the" Flat "Starting with Ronnie Swain & Wife running the only Motor garage petrol station Pre 1940 with pump handles, recalling from self experince,ocasionally doing odd jobs to earn pocket money,sweeping up and help using the pump handle. Next door the Co-oP the future of Stores to come, families from a wide area of the district became members, children would earn their pocket money, fetching the family weekly grocery. Having to take the Rations Card have it stamped brings back the futilely of the era.                                                                                                            Next door was Old Mother Jones Cafe, were you could spend your pocket money,purchasing a Bottle pop and a slice of home Bread Pudding. If you had any money left, the temptation was to enter Daddy Eagles Newsagents & Tobacco shop, and purchase a packet of cigs and say "for my dad". Ada Windbush bread & cakes shop followed then Richardson Butchers, were my brother worked partime Johnny the Rosie Browns Fish & Chip Shop,1d of chips & some batters, always gave two scupps and when wrapping them up knocked some off. Drapers Ladies & childrens clothes next the childrens favourite a shop full of pop & sweets. Mr Priest Electrical shop where local residents had the Radio repairs and replacement parts and accumulator recharged. Post Office & Telephone box. Across the opposite side of road Shufflebottoms Fruit & veg shop, next Billy Brannian Barbers shop follow by the Public Washing Baths many a story attached to that building.                                                                                                                                        The Following premises was two fold the local known boxer Carl Barton owned the local Coal Merchants which deliverd to houses via a wheel barrow delivery,this service was carried out with the help of team of local lads that earned their pocket money for a 1d per delivery. Another Pop & Sweet shop, plus a row of shops of Grocery, Butchers, Bread & Cake shop, Chemist and Fish & Chips shop.                                                                                                                                                 Then a large section of Buildings owned by the Birmingham City council,used as City Laundry for items from schools and offices. Mrs.Lees Ladies Hairdresser. Birch Family Greengrocers. Shoe repairs shop. Newsagents. Chemist shop. Fords home Breads and quaility Confectionary. Penny Pick Sweet shop, you choose your Favourite for 1d. The Local so called Tin Chapel, later converted to the British Legion Club "The Grapes Public house was  last building and the only pub  in the road.                 Regards Colin Mills                                                                         Additional memories 31/05/08 I have about the shops Colin Mills recalls are the butchers was called Richards. A few years ago I used to see Grayson Richards in the wholesale meat market in Birmingham. The drapers was called Pardoes and the sweet shop next door was Beaumonts. The greengrocers opposite was run by the Binnells for part of the 1950's. The sweet shop just past the public baths and opposite the end of Preston Road was run by sisters named Hartill. Going towards Benson Road was Luke Smith the chemist and Albert Yeomans the butcher, his brother Frank had a butchers shop in Benson Road. There was also a lady who ran library from a shop.                        JAMES HOLLOWAY


Reading a heart rendering story of a youth in Markby Road losing his life. This made a sad recall of my mate 11year old Reg Essex, he and I  were out roller skating in Bacchus Road and as young lads do, showing off how clever we could perform on them, when Reg race down the road and hit the pavement, and hit his head on the adjoining wall and collapsing. I returned to his house and fetched his mother, the local shop keeper phoned for a ambulance, and he was taken to Dudley Road Hospital were he never recovered and passed away, and at that age did not understand the end of life. His mother always acknowledge our friendship and at later date adoptive two brother aged 12years old and asked myself to befriend them. This I did for Mrs Essex in my memory of my mate Reg. I introduced them both in the 14th Boys Brigade at The Institute Lodge Road where they both stayed from their youthful years into manhood, both becoming officers of the Brigade. Out of adversity,sometimes brings happiness. Colin Mills 


Your site brought tears to my eyes. I live in Surrey and have all my life, but my mother sometimes was not able to look after us (in hospital) so we lived with my grandmother at 49 Bacchus Road. We also went to the local school for a while in the early sixties. Did they make fun of us! we had Surrey accents so we were easy targets. However, they are my fondest memories. As I had only just started  school, I can't place the geography. Bacchus Road was a terrace and I remember the last house in the row was right next to the railway line and we used to peer through the fence.             My sister and I were sent to a shop with a big mug and some money and came back with Faggots and peas, but I can't remember the shop, it may have been near Allen Road. I remember going to the public baths, because my grandmother only had a pantry, it was a cupboard with a big square sink. I remember a sweet shop across the road on a corner. My grandmother was MrsFenton, and my auntie and uncle lived a few doors up the Shrimptons.                                                                   There was a pub I think called the Railway and my nan would take us she would drink a pale ale and we would be with a soft drink and a packet of crisps watching the trains.                                             I don't know how accurate my memories are but I love the site.                                                   Best regards, Valerie


The year 1939.a group of six boys were walking along Bacchus Road eating chips,nearby the local Post Office,had a telephone Kiosk and post box infront of it. when one of these lads looked into the phone box and said to us other lads,their is a parcel on the shelf.So being inquisitive someone decided to find out the contents inside,when picking the parcel up he said,that it was ticking away,so the thoughts were a the decision was to take to the Police station at Dudley Rd/summerfield park. so we all walked up to Winson Green Rd to the Police Station, all six lads went inside thinking we may recive a reward. The desk sargent took the parcel and unwrapped the so called bomb,and to our amazment,it was an alarm clock ticking away. The police officer was about to give us all a thick ear, for wasting his time, when we all turned around an ran. On the way home we found out who the joker was we all gave him a kick up the rear end and ran home laughing.                                                                                                                                                I hope that the lads involved read this on the website.                                                              Regards Colin Mills


I Have just found your fantastic site which brought back many memories. My father was born at the greengrocers in Bacchus Road in 1916 and when her parents died he was adopted by his aunt and uncle Lily and Harry Blocksidge who had the newsagents and fishing tackle shop in Icknield Street. After they died in the early 1950s we lived there for a while with Uncle Percy Dawes. He wasn't a real uncle but came to live there during the war and stayed thereafter! I remember playing with the girl next door Christine Hands who I believe now lives in Great Barr. The shop was demolished in the 1960s and Dad moved his business to the Soho Road until 1977 when he retired due to ill health. Judy nee Blocksidge

I lived at 132 Bacchus Rd. for 19 years. 1948 to 1967 then emigrated to Canada, and still here.
Daughter Linda went to Benson Road School from 1955 to 61, then King Edwards Grammar School for Girls ,son Stephen went to Benson Rd.also but came to Canada with us when he was 10.
Names I remember, Mr and Mrs Fred Lewis in corner store Bacchus Rd and Leonard St. Mrs. Moore, corner of Bacchus and Allens Rd. Gord Latham on Bacchus, Charlie Millington on Bacchus.
I am now 77 years old so my memory is a little dimmer, would anyone who knows me or my family please drop me a line. Len Holland

BARFORD ROAD is just over the borders in Rotton Park. 26/03/03
I grew up in Barford Rd at 8/55 ( Bertha Buildings) from 1955 for 29 yrs loved it, I used to go to all the picture houses. My aunt (prices) used to have tobbaco shop on the Parade by the Lyric picture house
I was trying to find some information  when I came across this site. Sandra Cooke nee (George)

BEETON ROAD 28/12/06
I would also like to say that I enjoy looking at this site and find some of the comments very interesting and enlightening on how people used to live. I grew up in the Winson Green (Beeton Rd) area during the 60's and 70's and can remember how the area used to be. It is sad to see that back then society was a lot safer than it is today, which I thing is a shame as we have not really progressed. I have lived in Grand Rapids, MI (USA) for the last 4.5 years and can say that although the British media portrays the US as a violent society nothing could be farther from the truth. With the exception of a few bad rough areas of the bigger cities street crime and car crime is virtually non existent, which reminds me of my own childhood in Winson Green. Hopefully something will happen to improve the changes that have happened in England. Martin Thomas

BEETON ROAD  30/11/09

The first is a picture of myself and my Mother (Pauline Thomas) outside number 38 Beeton Road . I would have been around 18 months old at the time as it was taken in 1965. What I find interesting is the lack of cars on the street, yet as a child growing up in this area we had more cars than the surrounding streets. The second is of myself standing outside number 38's front door in 1966 (Martin 2). This was the home of Harry and Iris Smith. To the right is number 37 where the Weldings lived. They were two old spinsters that had lived in the house since they were built around 1906. They were full of knowledge of the area and remember when Beeton Road before the houses were built. It was used by the Soho Foundry as a slag heap. i can testify that we used to find some very large klinckers in the back garden when digging.                                                                    Martin Thomas  Grand Rapids, MI, USA


BENSON ROAD  22/06/2014

Photo for inclusion in your valuable site. Mrs EMILY Louisa Williams..& Mrs Cissie WESTON (with son Derek), outside No.21 Benson Road. Coronation King George V1 1937.
Best Regards Derek Weston


Marriage of Grace Williams (21 Benson Rd.) and Albert Brown ( Hockley )
 at Nineveh Wesleyan and Methodist Church, Benson Rd. c.1939.
Derek Weston

BENSON ROAD 30/10/07
What a brilliantly nostalgic site.
I used to live at 18 Benson Rd (up the steps next door to Maisies shop ) from 1952 to 1963. Mom and dad were Fred and Clarice Lowe, sister Susan. Grandad Albert Pike used to hire the hand carts from the "big yard " on the corner of Nineveh Rd. Pals I remember were Roger Denelly, Fred Deeley, Bert Peden, John Nurrish, Michael Clayton, Jeffrey Ince ( who was tragically killed in Aden ) and a lot of lads I played soccer and cricket with most nights down the rec. Remember one occasion when we were caught by the parkie playing soccer on the bowling green, everyone ran off but I left my jacket behind and of course he recognised it and took it to my house where it was waiting for me when I got home....ouch, that hurt!! Does anyone remember the Coopers who lived by the Wonder Vaults. Barbara and I have remained good friends all these years, she lives in Bournemouth now. I myself hve been married 37yrs and live in Coleshill. I have some great pics of the old days.               John Lowe Email:


Fred and Clarice Lowe, moved from Beaton Rd to Nineveh Rd and finally to 18 Benson Rd ( 1952-1974 ).


My aunt Joyce ( Pike)  and Fred Wakeman on their wedding day. They lived on the corner of Nineveh Rd

My aunt Joyce ( Pike)  and Fred Wakeman on their wedding day. They lived on the corner of Nineveh Rd

Probably members of the British Legion fishing club. My dad Fred Lowe is on the left at the back and I think the man on the right at the back is George Westwood of Talbot St.  Anybody recognise the others?    

Probably members of the British Legion fishing club. My dad Fred Lowe is on the left at the back and I think the man on the right at the back is George Westwood of Talbot St. Anybody recognise the others?


Possibly the Legion bowls team taken at the rear of the Grapes in Bacchus Rd Fred Lowe is second from the left and my grandad Albert Pike is second from the right. Extreme left is Joe Hale and the man in the middle with the trilby is Arthur Hale ( no relation ) who used to take the Boys Brigade. The man on the far right is George ?

Possibly the Legion bowls team taken at the rear of the Grapes in Bacchus Rd Fred Lowe is second from the left
and my grandad Albert Pike is second from the right. Extreme left is Joe Hale and the man in the middle with the trilby is Arthur Hale ( no relation ) who used to take the Boys Brigade. The man on the far right is George ?

The Cooper family ...41 ? Benson Rd. 

My sister Sue Lowe and a friend, is it Joy Whittle?

Sue Low and Jane Rodgers at the top of the garden 18 Benson Rd.

A weekend in Backpool 1955? some names I can recall are Barbara Cooper, Emily Cooper,        Harry Bartlam, Athur Lowe. Anyone know the others?


BENSON ROAD 25/08/07   

WILLIAMS' family of (19?)Benson Road. circa 1922.                                            

Back Row: Len, Harry, Albert and Howard                                                                                                   Middle Row: Jack, Cissie and Mabel.                                                                                                                    Front Row: Grace, Emily,  Doll (Doris), Arthur and Edna.

BENSON ROAD 05/10/06
My mom Janet (still with us) grew up during the 1940s and 50s in Benson Rd. Her mother was Violet and her dad Eric Whittle- both long gone now I'm afraid but my mom has an older sister called Maureen and younger one called Joy who readers may remember. They all lived at the house right next to the Wondervaults pub (the end nearer the railway line) - in fact when I used to stay over I remember the sound of the voices and piano music coming through the walls at night. Unfortunately I can't remember the house number (44, 45 or 46?) as I was very young (4yrs old) when they moved out (to a posh council house in Harborne in 1965). On the recently-posted photographs of the railway station at Benson Rd on your site, if you look at the one at the top right taken at rail level I think you can see the upper stories of the houses and then the white front of the Wondervaults pub in the distant background, behind the railway lines and buildings.
That block of houses in the triangle formed by Benson Rd, between the railway line and the pub were demolished and made way for a scrap yard and the Wondervaults (I think) temporarily became a DIY store. On a recent trip back (2005) I notice that the land (including the Wondervaults itself) is now occupied by a care home.
This photograph of 45 Benson Rd next to The Wonder Vaults pub
was taken by my dad John Rowe in 1966/7 just before its demolition.

We always had to approach the house through its back door by going up the entry (Grandad Whittle wouldn't allow us to use the front door!). The houses had deep cellars and a huge coal-fired range in the back kitchen. The front room was kept "for best". Some of my nan Violet's relatives (I think they were called Spillers) lived further up Benson Rd in much older houses the other side of the pub that seemed more like cottages and you had to approach them by going up through an alley. I think my great grandma lived further up on the opposite side of Benson Rd (or the next street down) for a while - they definitely were called Spiller.
In the early 1960's I frequently visited my nan and grandad Whittle - from our flat in Lozells Rd we walked up past the Villa Cross and over the Soho Rd to descend down St Michael's Hill. I'll always remember the feeling of excitement of going to see Nan and Grandad - of course the highlight was the railway - a grand-stand view was to be had from the wall of the triangular communal back yard. I was held up by some friendly soul to peer forever at the shunters chugging about but also the expresses hurtling through. As mentioned I was only 4 when they moved out but I have such vivid and particularly fond memories of that time and the area. My nan (Violet Whittle) worked at a factory called Toogoods  which wasn't far (in toddler walking terms) from Benson Rd and she took me there now and again - as far as I remember it was actually built on wooden "stilts" on the railway embankment right next to the line into Birmingham. You had to get to it by climbing a set of stairs from street level. However, I'm sure a reader will correct me if my then toddler brain has confused matters. I also frequented the "Black Patch" with my nan.
Finally I would be genuinely interested to hear if anyone remembers the Whittles or even me - a frequent visitor.
Keep up the excellent work.                                                                                                              Mike Rowe
PS I now live in the North East (Hartlepool) but I was born in Dudley Rd (City) Hospital and immediately became a resident of Lozells Rd until we moved onwards and upwards to Great Barr in the late 1960s.

Hi again I am looking for any one who knows the Bull family from 22 Lees St also my mate Macca who lived in Benson Road and a girl we called "TEAPOT" also from Benson Rd.                                      Best wishes Dave Bull Isle of Wight.

BENSON ROAD  Soho and Winson Green station Benson Road.

Photo thanks to McJoseph 26/09/06 The caption reads: "A photograph of the Great Western Railway station at Soho & Winson Green. A train approaches on the line from Birmingham to Handsworth & Smethwick".

Ex GWR 2-6-0 No 7321 on a passenger at Soho and Winson Green in 1957                                Photo Copyright "D K.JONES collection" with thanks..


Ex GWR 4-6-0 No 7900 "St Peters Hall" passing Soho and Winson Green signal box in 1956 Photo Copyright "D K.JONES collection" with thanks.

The photos are  of Soho & Winson Green Station of the G.W.R. The station buildings and signals are of pure G.W.R. type. The bridge in the distance carries Benson Road over the railway with the station entrance also there. Does anyone remember Nellie & Gladys who worked in the booking office there in the 1950's? I lived in Lodge Road from 1945 until 1961.
James Holloway   

BENSON ROAD   15/01/03

My mom lived at 42 Benson Road with my great gran, my grans name was Mrs Gilbert.  Then mom had me in 1955 and moved over the road to 1/37 Benson Road. My mothers name is Annie Gregory nee (Gilbert) my dads name was Harry Gregory.  I was born in   Dudley Road Hospital and I went to Benson Road School in 1960. I can remember playing all kinds of games in the street it was safe in those days, you used to be able to stay out of a night and play without being afraid as all the moms used to sit on their doorsteps watching you as you played. I remember having a very long piece of thick elastic where their would be a girl at each end and you would have to twist around and jump trying not to fall over.                                                                                                                             My dad used to drive the Lodge Road 96 bus, I can  remember mom taking me to go and meet him, we used to get on the bus and mom would get her money out, the conducter would say "put that back" then we would make our way home getting fish and chips on the way.  We used to live next door to the "Wonder Vault" pub and used the pub quite often living next door to it. I  remember standing outside the pub on bonfire night shouting (penny for the guy) with my friends Mandy and the twins Maxine andJulia I think their last name was Sadler.                                                            My dads aunt and uncle through adoption used to own Jacksons the greengrocers and mom used to work at the Black Eagle pub on Factory Road I would so dearly like to get in contact with any of the above people as now  my father is no longer with us it would be nice to see if anyone would remembers us.                                                                                                                                                    Anita Cunniffe  nee Gregory Email:


This  PHOTOGRAPH was taken in Benson Road
sometime in the 1960s
Does anyone recognise the little girl?

I was 5 when I arrived at Benson Road to live and was 13 when I left, I attended Benson Road and Handsworth New Road Schools between 1952 and 1961 before moving to the other side of town (Posh new council house for me Mom)
We lived in one of the back-to-back houses. Our address was 1 back of 38 Benson Road, on a letter the address would have been interpreted as: 1/38 Benson Road. To the best of my knowledge there were 7 b-to-b houses in our part of Benson Road. Two either side of, and adjoining the Wonder Vaults with a central entry to reach the back and three forming part of a terrace block across the road opposite the Vaults. One having a central entry and ours the entry to the side on the adjoining wall to a small shop owned by a lady named Doris. The Wonder Vaults is remembered only as a large White pub on the flat bit of Benson Road between Bacchus Road and the railway bridge. The facade and interior is loosely remember but the Outdoor, frequented very regular for a little packet of cheese and biscuits, is remembered well. I also played with the children of the pub.
I remember the Soap Hole well this is where you spotted your LMS locos(Vittoria Street Smethwick) however I was a GWR man so it was a little yard opposite Soho and Winson Green railway station (in Benson Road) that I frequented called "Allens Yard". Does anybody remember that ruddy great dog that used to put the fear of god in us when we went passed the back gate. O Happy days.
Soho and Winson Green Railway Station was tended by a lady called Bessy. By Ged Rutter 25/04/02

To the left of the school past Allens Road was an odd triangular shaped court yard with a passageway leading to Allen's Road. This courtyard had open railings on one side the other side of the railings was the Great Western Railway (GWR).
It was a great treat and a spectacle to see the great King Class locos come thundering past billowing stream everywhere.By Stuart Waldron 25/04/02

Head mistress in the early 1950's was Miss Dumealow.
 (Miss Dumealow was the senior teacher when I was there1945-50 and Miss Legge was the Head.(Ted Rudge)
Toilets were outside the main building, a lean to affair against the boundary wall to the left of the school.There were no playing fields so any sports activity entailed a long walk to a park somewhere near Rookery Road (approx 1.5miles each way).                                                                            Stuart Waldron 25/04/02

BENSON ROAD School.  Miss Dumealow  as far as I know, was never head mistress during the early 1950s , she used to take topclass in the juniors, I know that for a fact as I was in her class during my last year. Miss Legge was head mistress when I started and still head mistress when I left in 1955.                                                                                                                                            Keith Bird 11/05/02

BENSON ROAD School had an annex in Musgrave Road (church hall next to the church)                 Ged Rutter 25/04/02

A couple of years ago your site enabled me to start my search for my family history. Since then I have gathered some information together although some of it is a little bitty but it may help others in their search.
My grandfather and mother were William and Florence Minnie Edge who were living on Bellefield Avenue in 1911, Aged 29. He was classed as an Optician whilst Florence was a Frame repairer.
Their Oldest son 5 years was William Frederick Edge Known as Bill. I believe he worked as a Warder at the Prison but was sacked for picking fights with the inmates. Rumour has it he was a bare fist fighter. Later he married Hettie who was the manageress of Yates Wine lodge on Colmore row.
They had a daughter 3 years Phillis M Edge later to be Perks. The next son was my Dad who was called Arthur Harold but was christened Harold Arthur he was 18 months Later there was Austin Edge and Horace Edge. Florence Minnie was a Penn who also lived on Bellefield Avenue. She was 29 1911. Her Father was Frederick Penn who was a Baker and 49 in 1891 but was not recorded in the 1901 census.  Mother was Sarah, 31 and sisters Edith 8, Elsie 4 in 1891
In 1901 they were all living at 186 Lodge Road working in the jewellery industry.
Back to the Edges. Way back my great Grandfather was also a William and at the time of the 1881 census he was married to Pheobe Edge nee Shutts (born Kiddiminster born 1846/7). At the time they had daughters Alice L. 9years- Laura 6 years and leonard who has gone from the census by 1891. An Ernest is recorded as as 14 years in 1891.
I Hope this helps someone on their historic journey
So glad we found this site. Both my parents are from Winson Green dad (Raymond Williams) was born in Aberdeen Street and mom ( June Wood) was born in Bellefield Rd. If anyone remembers them please get in touch. Mom would love to hear from anyone with new's of Dorothy Palmer who's married name is Kane..

MANDY GOT LOST (03/07/03)
Even though I was born and bred in Solihull, I spent most of my childhood in  Winson Green. My parents where both born and raised there, Dad Raymond Williams lived in Aberdeen Street, and Mom, June Wood lived in Bellefield Road. We would often visit my grandparents and great grandparents they lived in Bellefield Ave. 1964 we were moving house, my parents dropped me off at my nanny Williams so they could shop for furniture, I told my nan I wanted the toilet, and as it was outside I decided instead of the back yard, I would try to find my mom and dad, I walked on to Dudley Road into Winson Green Road where two boys found me. They took me a little way but got fed up with me so passed me onto a lady in Black Patch Park. Instead of taking me to the police station she took me home to feed me and then took me to Thornhill Road police station. My parents had by this time returned to my nan's and raised the alarm that I was missing. 6 hrs later I was reunited with them. The way they left me to how I returned was a little diffrent. I had wet myself, my hair was matted and I HAD DONE NOTHING BUT CRY. When I was asked for my address I kept saying Solihull. I think the Police thought I had walked a very long way or I was mad. I often think about how lucky I was, can you imagin in this day and age a 3 year old child going missing and being found just hungry and tired....

My name is Dennis Evans and I was born at 8 Norman Street, Winson Green, in 1929 and lived in that house until 1952 when I married.
I would really love to know if anyone could give me any information about Betty Evans (no relation) from Wellington Street, she had a sister, Minnie, and a brother, Arthur.
Also does anyone know the present whereabouts of my cousin - Joyce Valerie Parry (nee Smith) who was born and lived in Blackford Street, Winson Green from 1934 until about 1952.
I have been able to find the rest of our cousins, but not Joyce, so it would be lovely to find her.
Dennis Evans

BRYANT STREET 222/06/2014
Wanted to say I have just found your Winson Green/ Brookfields site and am looking forward to going down memory lane and also posting some photos. My Aunt and Uncle lived in Bryant St and although I lived in Smethwick with my parents, No 14 was my "second home" throughout my childhood from 1946 until they moved to Quinton in early 70's. Most of my family were born and brought up in Handsworth so lots of memories of there too. I now live in Sutton Coldfield
Kind regards Margaret Challoner (nee Hibberts)

I have been looking at the website and it brought back memories. My family lived in Bryant Street from 1932 until approx. 1969. I left there in 1951. My family were the Higgins family at 11 Bryant Street. I had five sisters and two brothers.
I would very much like to leave a message on the website to see if anyone remembers us.
F.J. Higgins (Frank)

 I noticed an entry about someone living in 44 Bryant Street, I was born in that house on the 18/02/1962 and I lived there until I was about 9 years old, I used to go to Foundry Road school. I have very happy memories of this house my mom and dad where the best they made me and my two sister's Susan and Jackie very happy. I remember that house like I left if yesterday. I remember the cafe at the top of the road he was a black man and he used to have a boxer dog that used to sit on the step. Does anyone remember the toy shop on the opposite corner, and the chemist further along by the entry it was a old chemist like something from the Victorian age with its high counter there are lots of shop I can remember the butchers over the road nearer to the pub the man in there had ginger hair and a lump on his forehead and sawdust on the floor. Also the haberdashery further along with the bell under the floor that used to go off when you walked in. My mom used to buy our ribbo
Sandra Coates   Email:

BRYANT STREET   18/03/04

I used to live in 44 Bryant St  I believe that some of the houses in Bryant Street were originally built for the prison warders who for some reason didn't want them and they were handed over to the council. John Stamp lived with his parents in  No2 and the Peter Higgins lived just down the road on the opposite side to us. The gardens at the back of our houses came about because of a storm, apparently the fences were blown down and permission given for anyone that wanted to cultivate a garden, that is why there was a path between the back yards and the gardens except ours  44 because we were the end of the block. The railway run at the bottom of the garden with a high wall and a long drop down. A neighbour a few doors away (I can't remember her name) had a husband who was killed on the railway line, he was a signal box operator and was walking home when hit by a train

One set of grandparents lived in Little Peel Street and my Grandmoher and 2 aunts lived in Aberdeen Street. They were the Masons and the Greens. All my family were known down the Green as we called it. Frances Sheen ( Nee Mason) Email:


My name is Alan Sorrell and I was born at number 64 in October 1935 I remember my days there with affection it seemed to me there was always something happening (or was that my imagination). I lived there until I married Janet Blackwell in 1956 when we moved to Marroway Street and then to Tamworth. 

BRYANT STREET ran from Winson Green Rd to Clinton St that joined Magdala St and that went to Winson Green Road forming a large square, this was bisected by Blackford St .  We kids worked out (rightly or wrongly) that the distance round this small square was 250yards and if we ran round this 8 times we did a mile.  Does anyone remember a very bad accident that happened on Winson Green Road at the junction with Aberdeen St  when old Mrs Cook was hit by a Jeep driven by an American soldier (who was later charged with manslaughter) and killed this would have been sometime during 1942 or 1943 during the blackout. I can still remember the funeral when we all had to pay our last respects. At the corner of Bryant St. and Winson Green Rd. was Bradley's Coffee House at the bottom of the street was Bryant Bedsteads and that ran the full length of ClintonStreet. There where 2 policemen (Mr. Allen & Mr. Bullock) who lived in the street and a couple of prison warders. I remember on occasions going outside the prison when an execution was to take place to see the death notice pinned on the gates, I remember a large car (a Rolls I think) arriving and as the Bell began tolling a lady dressed in a fur coat would get out, drop to her knees and pray I think her name was Mrs Van ?????? something, my dad said she went to every execution in the country to pray.

Alan Sorrell  E:mail

BRYANT STREET 26/10/04                                                                                                                I have been looking for information about a Charles Bryant who owned Bryant Bedsteads about a possible family history link and was delighted to find it mentioned on your very informative website. Any information about the family would be appreciated.                                                          Monica Couchman


CAPE HILL is Smethwick but is included as a lot of Winson Green people worked there. 11/12/08

Sending you this photo of my mom JanetteJames nee Jones and work mates from Scribbans cake factory in Smethwick taken in 1961/ 62. Mom is the first lady kneeling on the left as you look at the photo she started work in 1960 and left in 1968. The other photo shows  two lady's they are twins Jean and Christeen who are also in the first photo. My mom thinks the site is great and would like you to put them to the collection.                                                                                                        Mark James


CAPE STREET 06/03/08                  1950s OUTING

Photo of a local outing on a coach about 40 men women and children of all ages and it looks like the mid 1950's. I don't know more than it was a local outing and my dad Jeff Mossop (who used to live Cape Street) is in the first row bottom left in a dark suit and I think his best frined (George? hall) is directly behind him.                                                                                                                         Jacqueline Jensen formerly Pillar                                                                 This photo may have been taken at Trentham Gardens see Eva Road for a similar photo. Ted

CAPE STREET 07/09/07           Photos thanks to Betty Dale nee Brotherton 

My Parents getting engaged accompanied by the aspidistra at 32 Cape Street.They were Married at St Johns Church  Ladywood in 1922

My Granddad & family, My Mom 2nd left. Photo taken in Carlisle Street about 1907. Their Mother died in1906 and Granddad brought them all up on his own. They moved to 32 Cape Street and my parents took over the tenancy  when they married in 1922.

Photo taken at 32 Cape Street, Rex the dog with the gang.

Betty and June the shelter was built on the bomb crater. The bomb fell immediately behind our house 32 Cape Street if it had hit a few yards on I would not be writing this. 

Thomas Buildings, my first little house is among the the ones you can see behind us. What a place to have our photo taken eh?

Victory parade in Cape Street

1950 BETTY-----with Betty's niece JOY and Betty's brother Raymond

CAPE STREET 15/08/05
Stumbled on your site by chance,I lived in Cape St - 1947/1965.Could you make any use of old photographs of the place, mostly family shots? Keep up the work,it was a pleasure to scroll through the pages.
Stevan Ryall - once of 1 Arley Villas ,Cape Street,Birmingham 18 - a very long time ago.


Photographs of the Coronation Day fancy dress parade Cape Street and the party in the Co-op hut Dudley Rd, I can recognise a few faces but have no names, I was just 6 at the time. I've got more if you want them but they all very simular.
Strange to look back at the birth of the Elizabethan Age which held such hope after the years of war, rebuilding and rationing.6 Photos with thanks to




I am posting this message to see if anyone knows of a Harold Middleton of 54 Carlisle Street Winson Green who worked as a foreman employed at the British Bedstead Co. Clissold Street.Harold played a part in the rescue of my Grandmother from the canal near Spring Hill. I am hoping this will jog someones memory about this incident and help piece the details together.        Linda Mathieson 


Thanks to Bunny Evans for the Carlise Street photos

I went into the 'Streets' section looking for Carlisle Street (where I was born and lived for 24 years) and was disappointed to see no entries at all, so here is the first one.
Carlisle Street ran from Norman Street finishing at the wall of Dudley Road Hospital. Just before this it was crossed by Lansdowne Street, forming little Carlisle Street at the top end.
My Mom, Dad and 4 kids lived at No. 6 (the poor end), 6 of us living in a 2 bedroom, one living room, back-to-back house with the loo up the backyard which you had to walk through the street, and up the entry to access. These toilets were located in a block of 8, which all the families in the 8 back to back houses and the houses up the yard (sheer luxury-they had small gardens) all had to share. We had no kitchen, just a Belfast sink (cold water only) at the top of the cellar steps where we had to wash. Friday night was bath night, in a tin bath in front of the fire. Later on, we went to the public washing baths in Bacchus Road, and then Heath Street.
My Mom and Dad were called Lily and Fred Bishop, and my two sisters' names are Lily and Brenda, my brother's name was Fred or Freddie and my name is Dorothy or Dot.
My grandparents lived at No. 9 and they were called Lily and Bill Pickering. My grandfather was a good piano player and kids in the late 1940's, early 1950's would often stand outside his house just to listen to him play. We had great Christmas parties when we would roll back the rugs, push the furniture out of the way and sing songs round the piano and, later on, play records and jive to the early rock and roll music.
In the 1930's my grandmother was well known in the road for being called on to 'lay out the dead'.
During the 2nd World War, the house that we lived in had the cellar reinforced so it could be used as an air raid shelter. I have very early memories of sitting on my mother's knee on a chair down the cellar during air raids, with other families from the street. During one raid, some houses at the bottom end of Norman Street, (close to the hospital wall and behind houses in Carlisle Street) were hit, breaking windows in many of the houses close by. My mother said, after that raid, my brother, who was only young at the time, suffered from nervous asthma for a number of years.                There was a pub on the corner"The Cottage of Content " with a shop next to it run by a lady called something like Clara or Clarice Rose. Over the road was another small shop (which was actually in Norman Street) called Beamans run by a wonderful old lady, Mrs. Beaman, whose only child, apparently, was killed at 11 a.m. on Armistice Day right at the end of the 1st World War. There were two other shops in the street, one run by the Houghtons family and the other by (last owner that I know of ) Mrs Fieldhouse. At the side of this shop was a passageway which led to a garage.

"THE COTTAGE OF CONTENT"looking down Norman Street towards Winson Green Road
We had great fun, playing in the street (very little traffic in those days), on the bomb site at the bottom of Norman Street, playing tracking in the alley ways that ran behind the shops on Winson Green Road or, at weekends and school holidays, in Summerfield Park. Like many other contributors to your site, I remember the boy being struck by lightning whilst sheltering with his bike in the park.
We had unbelievable freedom to roam!
In Carlisle Street, about half way up, on the left hand side as you face the hospital wall, were some, for then, modern semi-detached houses, which we called the new houses. My father, who was a bricklayer, helped to build those houses and, the last time I went round the 'old area' , although it has changed out of all recognition, they were still there.
I went to City Road Infants School, then Dudley Road Junior School, back to City Road Secondary Modern School and finally, Aston Commercial School.
My first job was in the jewellery quarter and I remember walking down Winson Green Road, past the warders' houses and the prison to catch the bus in Lodge Road.
For a time, in the early 60's, I worked at Bryants, furniture makers, in Bryant Street, off Winson Green Road. By that time the company had been taken over by Slumberland Bedding but one of the Bryant family's sons (Graham) was still involved in the company.
I remember lots of people who lived in the road, to name but a few, the Kirkoffs, two Morris families (one of whose mother's maiden name was Edna Rook and she was very good to my grandfather when he was widowed), the Rudges, the Harpers, the Parkers, the Allens, the Lissimores, the Barlows, the Peaces.
Very few of us had any money but we were mostly happy, people were honest and neighbourly and, although I wouldn't want to live in the conditions we did then, I have lots of wonderful memories.
Dot Lane nee Bishop

I am looking for the relatives of my late mother Florence Lillian Gill who married my father William Green in 1941, she died in 1949 when I was two. I believe she had one brother called Alf who lived in Chiswell Street and a sister called Betty who lived on Unett Street, there is one further sister who's name we don't have. I believe my mother worked at GKN Nettlefolds.
I would be really grateful if anyone knows the whereabouts of the descendents of any of the above. Many thanks for your help,
Les Green


I was born in Winson Green - Chiswell Road (parents - Stanley & Hilda Greaves) but lived 20 years in Coplow Street - Ladywood. When I got married I lived at 46 Tudor Street Winson Green and I married Valerie Benson ( parents - George & Emma Benson) who lived in Tudor Street next to the Malt Shovel Pub and take it from me it was 'The Best' Pub in Winson Green. My wife and I still say the early 60's was a great time. The Malt Shovel had the best football team run by Lenny Ward. We did the tote Sunday night at the Peel Pub and Horace Timbrull and Eric Hatfield both played for the Malt Shovel Pub. We use to go to The Tower Ball Room with Pat Roach.                                 All the best to Old Mates.
Dennis George Greaves
Left Winson Green May 1974 for  WESTERN AUSTRALIA

I was born in Chiswell Road in 1932, but moved to Selly Oak about 1935. I was there a few months ago but find I do not remember a thing.  John Adderley   Email:

My family lived on the corner of Cuthbert Road and Winson Green Road, my parents moving there from Heath Street in 1922 and bringing up 8 children, the first born in 1923 and the last in 1940. My Father was the last to move out when the houses were demolished.All children attended Dudley Road School as Infants and then on to George Dixon's Grammar (3) Barford Road (3)City Road Girls (2). The family is now scattered to New Zealand, Wirral, Devon, Essex, Leicestershire, and three still in Birmingham. When we meet we remember Winson Green, a Site such as yours is a boon.
Does anyone have a photograph of St Cuthbert's Church
 John Brown


I was born in No. 24 Cuthbert Rd. in 1943, to Norris Samuel Francis OWEN & Irene May Jeffery. My grandparents being James Henry Owen & Frances Elizabeth (nee Alcock).
Does anyone know where "7 Rosina Place", Cuthbert Rd was, as my father (01/06/1913 - 24/12/1975); late uncle, Reginald Harold Oughton (08/02/1911 - 01/12/1926) & late aunt, Elsie Louisa Oughton Owen (04/03/1901 - 1986 in Canada), were all born there.
Aunt Elsie married an Ernest Haycox, (Parish Church Bishop Latimer, B'ham in 1922) & had a daughter Joan, (17/01/1923 - present day, in Canada, with her extended family of 30+).
There were also family (Alcock's) living in Bellfield Rd.
A number of my family also have links with ABERDEEN ST., namely :-
No. 101: - my GG'dad James Alcock died there (25/8/1898);
No. 103: - 1881 census, my G'father James Henry Owen lived there;
No. 112: - in 1900 when James married, he had moved to this address &
No. 139: - Bernard George Owen lived there then he married Minnie Howell on 22/3/1913 @ St. Cuthbert's Church. Minnie Howell (who married Bernard George Owen), was from 91 Winson Green Rd. Sometime pre 1947, mom, dad & myself had moved to 74 Lozells St. Lozells, (mom's home, pre marriage). I now live in Burntwood, Staffordshire.
One story I can recall that dad told us, was when he moved the "Greenhouse" from Cuthbert Rd. to Lozells St. "BY HAND, on a cart" without any of the glass being broken.The greenhouse still stood in 1975 when dad died.
I would welcome any info any reader may have on the OWEN, ALCOCK or HOWELL families.                                                                                                                                                       Brian Owen


I have many fond memories of Winson Green. My wife Carol was born in Barford Road and attended Barford Road school. As for myself I lived in Cuthbert Road an can remember going shopping on the flat and going to the "Grove Cinema" one week and the "ABC Edgbaston" the next or if we felt like a change we would go to "The Lyric" (Ladywood).Going back to the shops do you remember the bacon shop that used to be just passed the park on the opposite side of Dudley Road. Patrick Garland


CLAREMONT ROAD  25/11/04  (just over the border but near enough)



Many thanks for the stories on the  area. I lived in Devonshire Ave for many years from the early war years. Where we lived the old houses are still in the Avenue today but in the hay day they was listed as the posh houses as they all had bathrooms and a downstairs loo. The houses were built by Walsh & Walsh the glass works in Lodge Rd for the glass workers they employed they was supposed to be tied houses but as no contract was signed when the factory closed the tennants could not be evicted, my family lived at number 15, and moved into the property in 1933 we had many happy years there, when the war broke out and we was supplied with the steel anderson bomb shelters all the neighbours pitched in and helped one another to dig the holes, BUT on the site years before stood some old cottages with cellers that had not been fully filled in and one of the diggers fell into the hole as he was digging, but as luck was with him he was not hurt, I think his name was Bill Dudfield. Also if any reader remembers the large house that stood next to the railway bridge in Musgrave Rd it was called Gib Heath House When Toogoods Tube moved onto the site they used it as works offices.
Can anyone remember the huge static water tank built in the Rec it was concrete and was the shape of a inverted pyramid, the reason for this was to service the four factories in Musgrave Rd also the railway trucks that was parked every weekend along the railway embankment along the gulley. The factory names, Rylands Timber Yard corner Park Rd, Robinsons File Works, later Toogoods Tube Manipulators corner Devonshire Ave, and Samuel Groves opposite, then Lingards Clothes Factory, The nearests large water supplies was the Canal in Nineva Rd, and the canal next to the BOC in Lodge Rd. Someone asked what was the name of the park keeper at the Rec, his surname was Jarvis, a very nice man. And the small building near the gulley was The Sons Of Rest, All the elderly men would go there and play Darts, Cards, and Dominos, Also one reader asked the name of the Lady who used to demonstrate against hanging outside the prison gates, her full name was Violet van der Elste.
Thank you Ted hope this information is of some use to your site and brings back some happy memories.
A  Potter

My name is Glenn Burford and used to live at 19 Devonshire Avenue from 1960 to 1967, and on reading about the train crash which took the life of my cousin Wayne Dandy decided to contact you to see if you have any contacts who went to Benson Road School from 1965 . I am now 47 and live in north wales. My father is Alan Burford and my mother is Pauline Burford nee Farnell of Lees Street.

DEVONSHIRE AVENUE                                                                                                        , contained the best houses in the area (in my childhood thoughts) with gardens at the front on the railway side, a short distance in length that lead down a short steep hill to Musgrave Road.
by Ted Rudge

I used to live in Devonshire Avenue and my Nan (Lottie Farnell) lived round the corner 8/113 or something like that -  my mom will be thrilled when she sees some of the photos. I attended Benson Road school until we moved to North Wales in 1966 when I was 8. I remember going up the gulley to school and playing in the rec. Thanks once again for a great site.Adrian Burford     Email:


A fantastic site which I found quite by accident.
I was born in Burnley in 1956 and my father died in 1961 so I didn’t really know him or anything about him, my mum didn’t talk about him.
It was only recently that I found out that he was originally born in Birmingham. He was born in Sept 1921 and was christened Kenneth Albert Guest, his home address at that time was 70 Devonshire street, All saints. His father was called John Edwin Guest whom I realise I was named after. His mother’s name was Louise Guest nee Pearce.
I have no details about his early life other than during WW2 his call up was deferred due to him being an apprentice, he eventually was called up and served with one of the Armoured Regiments in North Africa.
Thanks for the site and seeing the actual house was Great.
John Guest

I was born in Devonshire street in 1958, my Mum and Dad were Les and Irene Smith. A number of my Mum’s family lived around us, her maiden name was Joinson. My uncle Cyril Joinson, wife Margaret also lived there I think for many years after we left in 1963. There kids names were Martin, Lee, Paul and Mark. The grocery shop over the Road was owned by the Howlings family. My nan, her sister Pat, her daughter Brenda lived a few doors away, I think we lived in number 32 (but thats probably not right). My Auntie Nell lived across the Road from my Nan.
I remember the Fieldhouse family (don’t know why) but after we moved we used to visit every saturday taking the No. 11 from Selly oak as we had moved to Weoley Castle.
I am sure no one will remember me but i had 3 brothers Roy, Peter and Steven who were 16,13 and 10 respectively in 1963. Steve went to Benson Road and Roy and Peter went to Lordswood Tech, but I think they had both been at Benson Road. The only thing I can remember is Sunday afternoons when all the men came back from ‘The Devon’, had a Sunday roast and then we had a mass football match in the street, about 30 a-side. Oh and having our TV meter robbed one day, and apparently everyone knew who had done it.
Chris Smith

Thanks for your wonderful web site. Here are some more memories from Devonshire Street.
I lived at 113 Devonshire Street from 1954 when I was born, until 1961 when I moved to Northfield. However, my Nan, Annie Dodwell continued to live there until she moved in about 1963.
I went to Benson Road School and so did my brother Carl who was born in 1956. My mum was Joyce Erica Dodwell and she was adopted in 1932 by Annie and Thomas Dodwell. I think he was in the building trade and died about 1950. I am looking for any information about them or the adoption as my mum died before finding anything out about her birth parents. Also, she did not tell my dad she was adopted until a couple of years before she died, so he has no information either.
My father is Patrick John Sweetman and he married my mum in October 1952. He was then in the army doing National Service but left when my brother was born because mum didn't like him being away in Austria.
I remember Mrs Whitmore's shop a few houses along from ours, the outdoor across the road on the corner and going to have my photograph taken at the factory at the end of the street. The man who took them was the caretaker I think. He lived in a house on site and used to colour in the photos by hand after taking them.
We often played down the Rec and in those days it had a park keeper's building that had seating running around the outside. If anybody fell over we would run for the Parkie, climbing onto the seating to look in the window if no one answered the door.
I can't remember my teacher at Benson Road other than her nickname, Miss Rolling Pin, which I think was similar to her own name. I do remember we all ended up with Sellotape over our mouths one lesson because we were too noisy. It started with one child and then others were
deliberately talking so that they could get a piece too! How times change. Teachers would be had up for assault in this day and age.
The other place I remember was The Institute, on Lodge Road, I think. I can remember going there to do arty crafty things and also taking part in the anniversary parade round the streets.
I was christened at St. Chrysostoms church and my godfather was a man called Horace. His wife, whose name I can't remember was my godmother. I think they lived opposite us in the street.
I think there was a toy factory in the same street as the church because I remember walking home one day from school past the church and a man came running across the road with a big box under his arm. It contained a doll that had a slight crack by the ear so would have been thrown out as a reject and he asked my mum if I would like it free of charge. The doll was typical of dolls of that time, with glued on hair and a body that cracked if dropped. It would have been much too expensive to buy in the shops and I treasured it for years.
If anyone remembers anything about Annie and Thomas Dodwell or Patrick and Joyce Sweetman( nee Dodwell) I would love to hear from you  I can be contacted at.

I have just been looking at your old Winson Green site and thought how wonderful it is, a great place to view old Winson Green.
Our family (the Brookes) lived at 62-64 Devonshire Street, from 1968-1975, then we moved to New Spring Street in Ladywood  (Brookfields).
It was fascinating to read the stories and look at old photo's from days gone by.
I also attended Benson Road School and have lots of happy memories of my time there.
Also, waiting for my dad to get me a bottle of pop when he visited the Devonshire Arms pub at the top of the road.
Thanks for putting together such a great web site for people to view and good luck for the future memories that will be left there.
Kind regards    Chris Brookes

DEVONSHIRE STREET 13/10/12                                            


I have just been reading your Winson Green site and looking at Streets, and came across a couple of people Doris Alexander and James Reed who wrote on the Devonshire Street page, and there were a couple of quotes in them for the Timmins family. This was my mother's family and certainly the glass blower was my Uncle Edwin. In fact my cousin in Canada still has some of his glass blowing vases and they are beautiful. The Timmins lived at 1/185 and Edwin then moved to 187. I did try email James Reed but it bounced back, I presume he might not even be alive now, as Edwin was born 1901 - he was one of 11 children. Is it possible you could put a note on for me on the Devonshire Street, that if anyone else has recollections of the family they could email me as you never know there might be a younger generation of these families who might recall something. I would be really grateful.       Carol Williams .

Isaac and Emma Timmins who lived in Devonshire Street.
He was a boatman. My mother told me he used to bring the horse sometimes up the yard for the kids to see

DEVONSHIRE STREET (reply to the above request) 28/10/2012
On a visit to your web site I saw the, Like to contact The Timmins family from Devonshire Street. My father is Edwin (Ted) Timmins from Devonshire street, The eldest of three brothers Ted, Harold and Dennis the sons of the late Edwin and Doris Timmins my grand parents. They all lived in Devonshire street in a back to back house. My grandfather worked at Walsh &Walsh the glass factory, then at BOC in Lodge Road.
My father is alive and well at the ripe old age of 85, and he still sees his old mate Bert Field also in his eighties who is from the the same area. My mother and father lived for many years in Kitchener street. And I've many happy memories of black patch park. My Mother's(Joyce) maiden name was Few she born and bred in Kitchener street
Please feel free to contact me.
Michael Timmins  (Micky)


A photo of my dad and step mom, I am the girl standing between them.The 3 children are (left to right) ROBERT, MAGGIE AND OUR BILLY. The photo was taken outside the Brew House in

My family lived at 2/91 Devonshire Street, I was born at this address in 1955 I had a sister Belinda my dads name was Leonard Cummings he worked at the Leyland Longbridge, my moms name was Violet Jessica Irene Cummings maiden name Street, some of the people I know there was a family called memory's another family called Trainer who lived behind us in the in the next entry, also Andy Mold and David Hammond who I had contact with for many years but have now lost touch, it would be nice to be in touch again.
Leonard Wilfred Cummings

I was born on 13 Sep 1959 Martin K Sankey at 189 Devonshire Street.
My Mother is Florence M Venables (Mary Venables she didn't use her first name much).
My father is George W K Sankey.
My Dads Family Born 11th June 1931 George W K Sankey, parents Wilfred George Sankey married to Florence May Sankey (Bradnock). They lived at 1 back of 7 Norton Street, with brothers Ray and Les (Les married Margaret Venables my moms sister).

My Mothers Family her father (my Grandfather) was Fred Venables, married to Florrie Emily Venables (Robinson). they had 6 children, Francise / Fred / Rone / Florence (Mary) / Margaret (Married Les Sankey) and Vera (worked at the R.E.A.L.). They lived at 189 Devonshire Street.

When my mother Florence (Mary) Venables parents past away, my mother  looked after her brothers and sisters, then married my father on 31 March 1956 at ST Chrysostoms Church,
They lived at 189 Devonshire Street, for 6 more years Then came me Martin Kenneth Sankey 1959, then my sister Tina Sankey 1960, Soon after they moved to Lichfield Staffordshire,1962. I have seen some old photos so I will try and get them to send to this site,
Martin K Sankey

I have just come across your remarkable web site.
I was born 27 September 1938 to George and Emily Hoare at 4 back 21 Devonshire Street; my father was a Jewellers Porter. I would very much welcome any information on this area of the street and its residents .Your site extracts from Kellys Directories indicate that 40 years or so earlier there were shops at 13, 22,23, and 24 so the chances are they were still shops up to the 1940’s?
Brian Hoare

I'm Doing my family tree and believe that a Robinson family lived at 173 Devonshire street and possibly 169 Devonshire Street from mid 1800's to early 1900s.The family is John Robinson and his wife was Amelia Robinson with several kids.
Does anyone have any information about them at all?
I would be very grateful if they have.
Regards Gary Robinson.

14/03/2012 Dave recognized his uncle on this photo. Just discovered your site and it's bought back lots of memories and I was surprised when I saw the photo on Devonshire Street of a group of men in front of a coach because standing behind the man with a white open neck shirt who's holding a coat is my Uncle Tim (John) Barlow who along with my Aunt Mabel lived for many years at 50 Devonshire Street. I would like to hear from anyone who remembers the Hartles family off 46 Musgrave Rd we lived there from the 40's to the early 80's.I also noticed someone talking about the little shop run by a lady who had some fingers missing,that was my cousin Floss Dartnell.
Thanks again for a great site.


Tommy Harpers Betting Shop 1960s   Devonshire Street

Same  Address  1901 ????
We believe the photo shows Richard and Isabella Barratt, with their son Richard. Richard's parents, Charles and Maria, kept a grocer's shop at 140 Devonshire St (Later this would have been Jacksons on the corner of Devonshire Street and Kent Street North) The shop in the picture we think is at 131 Devonshire Street. Richard's occupation in the 1901 Census is given as (Sergeant) Greengrocer, and we believe the photo to date from 1901. We don't really know what the (sergeant) means, but we do know that Isabella and Richard junior were born in Gibraltar, which may suggest that Richard senior was in the Army. Richard and his family emigrated back to Gibraltar in the early 1900s: some of his children, however, came back to Britain. Obviously if anyone has any further information on this please let us know!
Chris Ramsbottom E-mail
Ann Lawson            Email

Kellys directory 1897

Kellys directory 1897

Kellys directory1903

Kellys directory1903

Kellys  directory 1903

Kellys  directory 1903

Extracts from the 1897 and 1903 Kellys Directory for Devonshire Street shows 131 was a shop with Wm J S Dyer as the occupier in 1897 and The Barratt's were at 131 and 140 in the 1903 version
Sent to us by John Houghton; Aston Brook Through Aston Manor.

Does anyone remember All Saints primary school, Ithink was just off Lodge Road? We lived at 199 Devonshire Street until 1972. The houses were being demolished for new ones at the time
Christine Atkinson  Email:

Thanks Ted, can any one remember the Cotons at Devonshire St, my G/parents lived at 138 and 142 in the 1920s up to 1947 names would be William George and Fanny Jane Coton, Frank Henry, Lionel Victor Coton Edna May and John Thomas.
Below is for Edna or John.
I just love your site it's great for people like me living in australia to see and hear about where my family came from I have found someone on your site that was asking if anyone could remember the cotons that lived in Devonshire St... well the names are the same as the family i am reseaching and i think they maybe my great grandfather and G.mother. I have tried to email they person that posted this but have not heard from him i would really like to get in contact with him his email is I was wondering if anyone could help me get in contact with him maybe you could post something on your site that someone may remember my family as i live in australia and finding any infomation is hard.
Any help would be great. Natalie Coton

   "MURDER" 06/03/06
In Devonshire Street,a muffin man was murdered and my grandmother Mrs Clara Hill of no.9, was a witness at the forthcoming trial.
Unfortunately, I cannot give  a date (I would guess 1920s 0r 1930s). It would have appeared in the local paper(s) at the time.
I don't whether my grandmother ever did attend court. Does anyone out there have any information.
Ray Norton    Email:

 I used to live in Devonshire Street untill we had a fire & was moved to Hingeston Street & then back to Devonshire Street. I was the one who used to play a lot of loud music. So does anybody remember the Brooks, Hopcroft, Memory, Ikins and the Hurdmans. If so please post messages and we can share our memories. Dave Brown  Email:

Looking at old photos of Devonshire street was fantastic. I lived there as a small child for a couple of years not sure of the number around 1960 to 1962. My moms name is Ruby Benton her mom lived next door with son Bill and daughter Naomi and my dad was called Thommy.I have a sister called Sharon and Delia, we then exchanged the house with my dads brother and wife called Billy and Barbra Nicholl to live in Sparkhill does any one remember the family.                                                        Ruth Devaney nee Nicholl    

The gully and the Rec minus the railings 2002

The gully and the Rec minus the railings 2002

I use to play on the RECreation ground in Musgrave Road  when I was a young girl, we used to come from school (Benson Road) down the gully and onto the swings in  the Rec, we had great fun.
 I then moved away, and some years later got married and guess what I couldn't believe it the council gave us our first home in Radnor Street  next one down from Devonshire Street (where I was born). I then had my sons and move to Handsworth New Road and both my sons played football on the Black Patch park. We  have vivid memories of the happy times at the park and Rec, we would hate anyone or anything to alter it.
Kath Dowell (nee Greensall)


Avertisment for the BARNET  WORKS (thanks to John Houghton) when we  knew the factory   it was called ROWLANDS ELECTRICAL ASSESORIES Ltd  (THE  R.E.A.L.) ****************************************  

Avertisment for the BARNET  WORKS (thanks to John Houghton) when we  knew the factory   it was called

I worked in the toolroom at R.E.A.L after it moved there from Hockley Hill. Director: Charlie Sothers, Works Manager: John Sothers, Toolroom Foreman: Frank Wilkes.
Great times.  
Raymond Derbyshire


Group of workers from Rowlands Electrical Assesories Ltd ( THE R.E.A.L.) Devonshire Sreeet 1958.

THE R.E.A.L. on left with Anscombes grocery shop on the corner of Lees Street and Tommy Harpers Bookies shop with two ladies talking on the other corner.  

Ladies from the R.E.A.L left to right 
Back Row:  Laura Leighton (nee Walker).  ?,  ?, Vera Casey.
Middle Row:   Annie Barnes, Ida Hands, Pem Dunkey
Bottom Row:  Vera Venables, Nell Garland, Laura Blakemore, Beattie Wallis.

More R.E.A.L  LADIES going to work.L to R ?, ?, ?,Laura Leighton (nee Walker),
a local beauty queen (no overall),    ? Crossing Devonshire Street at the junction of
Devonshire Avenue Tommy Harpers bookies shop behind them with Mr Hall standing outside waiting to take the bets sometime during the 1950's.

Some More R.E.A.L  LADIES going to work. Ida Hands  left and Laura Leighton crossing Devonshire Street near the house where she lived (next door to a Mrs Tooth)
If anyone has any memories of the Walkers or Leightons who lived in Devonshire St, I would be?grateful?to hear from you.
Amanda Jenkins

View looking down Devonshire Avenue towards Musgrave Road  with Tommy Harpers shop on left

Samuel Groves Ltd corner of Devonshire Avenue and.Musgrave Road  

My Mum who's eighty three was thrilled to see the photographs of the REAL (Rowlands Electrical Accessories Limited) factory in Devonshire Street. She worked there in the packing/assembly shop until it closed down. I also worked in the office at the REAL. It was my first job when I left HNR in 1958 and I stayed until I had my daughter in 1968.
Such happy days! Hope a lot more people contribute to this site. Pam Willis (nee Byfield)

My father was Albert Alfred Norton born at 113 Devonshire Street and married my mother Priscilla Hill of No 9 in 1915 at St Chrysostoms Church when they were 21 and 22 respectively.
My Eldest sister Gwen was born at the end of 1919, my brother Albert in April 1922, another sister Sylvia born January 1928(d.1994) and sister Joyce born May 1930.
I was born in Binstead Road, Kingstanding on 14 Sept. 1933. In later years my sister Joy (Now Mrs Cox) lived in Musgrave Road in the late1950s with husband Denis & son Kevin born 1955. I now live in Shenstone,Staffs.  Ray Norton  Email:

DEVONSHIRE STREET  from Norton Street was Davies a drapers shop run by two ladies, lots of brown paper parcels and ladies things.  Next-door lived Mr and Mrs Greensall, later on in life they turned out to be my wife Maureen's grandparents, their garden over looked the railway line. A small shop that sold everything including a 1d bottle of Vantos pop, they even had a one armed bandit.  Another house a few doors down lived a man and his wife called piggy (I do not know why), he sold fresh mint and rhubarb from his garden.  Another two small shops and a coal yard were passed.  Then the (R.E.A.L.) Rowlands Electrical Accessories Ltd. a large building employing lots of local people. Facing the R.E.A.L. was a builders yard Bancroft's, then at the corner of Lees Street, Anscombes grocery shop. Two more small shops could be found in LEES STREET and a Pet shop (Morris's) on the corner of Lodge Road facing the Congregational Church.  Locally this church was known as the Institute, they held services, Sunday school, various youth organizations and once a year the Anniversary parade around the streets. Back at the other end of Lees Street was an outdoor corner of Devonshire Street.  Houses ran the rest of the way up Devonshire Street, some had terraces running between them, until arriving at the Lodge Road end where there was a Vegetable shop and the start of a small row of other shops, including a Butcher, Newsagent and a Fish and Chip Shop. Crossing over  Devonshire Street at this point we find the Devonshire Arms pub with Musgrave Road to its left. continuing down Devonshire Street various other small shops could be found. Living in one of the terraces on this side of Devonshire Street was the local “Tally Man” Enoch Wassell he was able to provide anything.  Mr Wassell was a very well respected man who did a lot of good, always had a kind word to say to us youngsters when he was collecting his money.  Another person we saw a lot of was the local illegal “Bookie” Tommy Harper his shop with blanked out windows, was on the corner of Devonshire Street and Devonshire Avenue.  Many a time when taking a bet for a relative or neighbour I got locked in when the police were expected.  Tommy also had a 52 seater Charabanc (coach) providing trips from local pubs to the Ted Rudge.  

"DEVONSHIRE ARMS"  (the Devon)  24/03/03
 Lodge Road between Musgrave Road and Devonshire Street
Thing's I remember about the Devon.  When I was a kid I used to go to the outdoor for crips and nuts, I used to save bottle tops I got them from here, behind the bar was old Elsie, and my dad Tom, as well as the boss. Photograph from Mac JosephWhen I  could get away with it I went in to drink 1966, old Elsie was still there she know I was not the right age.The pub at this time had not been altered to how it is now it was run by the Bach's Sandar and Richard, my friends and I used to go in to the small bar on a saturday night, Roy Darby,
John Williams, Barry Williams, Wally Williams, Shirly Darby, Anne Williams, all used to to sing old song's to the piano played by old Katie or the accordion all of us in our teen's sang war time song's.  In the week we used go into the big bar to play dart's, card's and dominoes, when we played dart's the board was in a corner with the fire on the right were you had to stand to mark the board so you tried not to lose to offten.
From Rod Scott

I have been researching my family history on my mother's side. He was a 'Hands' and going back a few generations to the 1870 census)there was a Thomas Hands who was a Flint Glass Blower and also a retail brewer who lived at 'The Devonshire Arms' 173 Lodge Rd. I am amazed to see the pub still there - it surely can't be the same building can it? Does anyone know the street address? Does anyone know anything about glass blowing going on in this area in the 1870?  Colin Fox

1st Reply   22 /12/ 04   From  ANDREW MAXAM,   Regarding your enquiry re the Devonshire Arms on the Winson Green website.  I have some information on this pub, having bought the archives of Mitchells and Butlers for the Time Please! book I wrote on Birmingham's Pubs. I didn't feature this pub as I didn't have a photo of it, but you are right, it's not the same building from the 1870s. When the old beerhouse closed, there was a temporary premises whilst the current building was being built - this was in 1932. According to my records, it was at 178 Lodge Road. Hope this is of some help to you.                                       Andrew Maxam   TIME PLEASE!    A LOOK BACK AT BIRMINGHAM'S PUBS 


A  photo taken in the Devonshire Arms at Christmas 1973. I'm second from the right, and Father Christmas is my granddad Harry DeeleyWonder if anyone recognises the other children.Maybe someone recognises him/herself...    Craig Deeley


I was born 171 Devonshire Street, 1943. My dad was Bill Harwood, my step mom was Ettie also Albert, Billy and Maggie.We lived opposite the Alec Pub and Jackson theGreengrocers. There was a coal yard a door away. I remember sates fish shop in Devonshire street (she had a daughter) I use to cut up her chips and after I got free chips and fish which she use to put  in newspaper. In the winter my hands use to be cold throught cutting up the chips.                                                              Maureen Harwood                                                                                 The  Fish and Chip shop used to be run by Mrs Sara Jeavons 1950/60 when did "sates" take it over?Photograph Maureen and Albert Harwood taken in 1948

MAUREEN'S  BROTHER ALBERT WRITES Does anybody remember the fire diplay In Godwins shop window I lived next door to them. Someone lit the fire work in the window, the coal yard and Mrs Berry owned the shop next to the REAL and also Windfields the toolmakers at the back of Mrs Berry shop and Les Marshall Ray Harrison worked for him .dose anybody remember george and Peter prichard email me if any body remember me.

 Albert.Harwood. Email:



Born 1941 Devonshire Street,  left for better life. Peter Pritchard  Email:

We lived at 195 Devonshire St, from 1934 to 1955?. I left in 1950 to marry a Miss Doreen Broadbent of 128 South Rd. I was taught by Miss Dumelow who lived in Lodge Rd opposite the BOC Offices. My freind Stanley Boss lived next door, only he passed the 11plus, nuff said. I remember Slinker Priest at H N R School and Mr Simms for Music and Maths. PS.  I am now 77 yrs old but have many memories both happy and sad of Little Devon the Posh End.
I Remember Davies's shop on the corner of Norton / Devonshire Street and Bill Maggs and his family at 197 their son Chris was the well known Pro Boxing Ref,
We lived at 195 from 1934 till my mother was moved to a flat in Rubery just outside the Mental Hospital gates, as she was quick to point out. My dad was killed in an air raid the 12th/13th Dec 1940, I was 15.
Mum went to work at Rowlands Electrical Accessories Limited (REAL Works) she was a forewoman there for years, till well after the war, she loved the job and the comradeship that she found there.
I left home in1950 I married a Miss Doreen Broadbent of 128 South Rd and had thirty very happy years together. She died in 1980.
Sam Tyler and Win along with their three boys Clifford, Kenneth (my mate) and Colin the youngest.The shop at 191 was  owned by Mr and Mrs Matthewman they had a daughter Eileen. The Venables were at 189  (Vera)  is the only one I can recall. Mr Timmins of the big cheeks lived next down, he was of course, a skilled glass blower.The glass works were by the canal in Lodge Rd  few doors further along lived Miss Dumelow, who has been mentioned often on your site. All who had the pleasure of being taught by her were very fortunate, she introduced us to light classical music, I knew the Mikado like an old friend when I left. Do any of your older readers remember the "letters" in the daily paper, from a small puppy? Wonderful days. Next door to Miss Dumelow, lived my friend Stanley Boss he was the only one to pass the 11plus that year, "Nuff Said".
The fish shop in "Little Devon" was first kept by the Isaacs, they had three boys who all went to University and I think all became Doctors. Then Jesse and Sarah Jeavons {Jevons}? came next, Sarah was very deaf and had to stand patiently while Jess bellowed insults into her ear, then she would give him her share, I well recall the day she emptied the batter can over his head, we kids were rolling about the floor, literally. I have fetched many a jug of beer from the outdoor opposite, much to the horror of my mum, I think she thought I would become addicted (I never did though).
I had other mates near Handscombs shop Arthur Wilson, Ronnie Smith who had a horrible young sister later she turned into a most beautiful young lady who wouldn't give me time of day (oh well).
It's wonderfull sharing ones memories about people and places we knew like "The Pheonix Scouts troop" at Foundry Lane school. Handsworth New Rd School, The woodwork block in the playground was so called because the ground floor was used to teach woodwork the upper floor was the science room Slinker Priests abode HNRS was one of the first Secondary Modern Schools in the country and was well in advance of most schools around at that time. We obtained and fitted a complete internal telephone system in 1937-8 every classroom was connected through an exchange in the science lab.
Mr Goode was Headmaster he was Mayor of Smethwick at one time, Clifford Tyler wrote copperplate and was made clerk writing all letters from the Heads office. Cliff was a motor mechanic at Mists Garage what a waste of a wonderful gift.
I left school in 1939 aged 14 and worked as an electricians mate till I was called up at eighteen, I served in the Royal Navy {FAA} as an aircraft electrician, after discharge I took a job in an industrial X-ray dept, in the course of time and numerous exams later I became Chief Radiologist, not bad for for an eleven plus failure. Well I am hoping I have stirred a few memories,looking forward to more of the same from old friends and neighbours.
 Best Wishes..James Reed


I went to live in Devonshire St when I was 8, at the time my parents chose there because the school was at the top of the road (Norton Street School). However we soon found out that it was derelict and later demolished, so I went to Benson Road school instead. Our house was right opposite Kent St North with the Alex public house on the corner, we used to see a man come from the glass works in Lodge Rd. with a jug to take ale back to the glass blowers who always had a thirst. Mr Timmins who lived a few houses up the road use to amuse us kids by blowing out his cheeks.
Most Saturday nights ended with an argument or a fight at turning out time, the men fighting and the wives trying to pull them away. I don't think anyone ever got hurt, it was just a finale to the evening to them, they were all good friends next day.
Opposite our house on the other corner of Kent St.North was a greengrocer owned by Mr & Mrs Jackson, she looked after the shop while Mr Jackson did the round with a horse and cart. Further up Devonshire Street was a fish and chip shop, everyone piled in the shop shouting their orders while the owner and his wife kept up a constant argument. It was as good as a pantomine so we did not mind waiting.
When war broke out Bradfords bakery in Norton St had just had a load of sand delivered so we all went with buckets to fill up sandbags to put over the cellar grating. Monday morning they had not got a grain of sand left. When the bombing started a railway carriage carrying a gun used to go up and down the line which ran at the back of our garden. One night a bomb was dropped it missed the gun but twisted all the rails and although we had a very tall greenhouse at the bottom of the garden it did not even crack a pane of glass.
School holidays we used to take a bottle of water with lemonade powder and jam sanwiches, most of the children joined in, we even had to take the little ones. We would go to Watson Pool which was down past Handsworth cemetery, it was a good few miles to walk from our house. Someone always fell in so we used to light a fire and hang the wet clothes over the branch of a tree. Bonfire night was a big event some of the houses were build round a big yard so the Timmins family made a bigfire with sparklers and fireworks we had a wonderful time.
I remember the last Lodge Road (Number 32) tram being driven along the route all illuminated, we stood on the corner of Norton St to watch, the heat from it was terrific.
Shopping was done at the Flat in Lodge Road, or sometimes we used to go to the Coop in Bacchus Rd. Whichever one we went to we had to carry it home.
I remember the rec in Musgrave Road, sometimes  in school holidays different people used to come and organise games to keep us out of mischief.
We left Winson Green when I was about 16, but I still remember how we were all good friends, and the grown ups always helped each other.
Sad to think that those days are gone, although we have more today I don't think we shall ever look back again with nostalgia.(how true)
by Doris Alexander


Born 1941 Devonshire Street,  left for better life. Peter Pritchard  Email:


Me in our back yard 6 bk 76 Devonshire Street, around 1972   
and My dad Fred Deeley (bottom left) in the Birmingham Boys Football Team, mid 60s.

Craig Deeley  03/02/03     Email:

We lived on Devonshire Street until 1973. (I was born 1969 in George St West above a chip shop). I've just seen my uncle Pat Deeley on one of the photos taken in the Alex Pub, a long with Trevor Field, an old family friend. Can't wait to tell my parents about this site. I will also try and find some old pictures, I know we have some at home.
I seem to remember a shop in Devonshire Street, or maybe the next street up owned by a woman called Floss. She had a few fingers missing on one of her hands, which my mom used to pretend to me were cut off in the bacon slicer! Floss used to sometimes let me go behind the counter to help out. Also I vaguely remember a butchers called Martins, and a shop called Gabriel's or Kelly's a couple of streets up. I remember having to go up steps to get there. I was only 3 at the time
Craig Deeley  03/02/03     Email:

Here are some of things I remember of Devonshire Street, were I was born in 1950, the photograph or you show of the Devonshire Arms and the Greengrocer's , on  the other side is how I remember it. the aura the greengrocer's I knew the owner I  as Bert the shirt,also just along Lodge Road was a fish-and-chip shop known as Coopers, also the  Draper shop run by Mrs Connell's, and Mrs Sterley,s the sweetshop.

 In the yard were I lived  there was five houses,  12 is where the Mr and Mr's Tantin lived, 14 is where the Elliot's lived,  16 is where I lived, 18 is where the Baliey's lived, 20 is where the Hollier's lived.
 The Tantin had  a lot of children but I only remember two they were  Michael and Linda,
The Elliot's  also had  two children they were  David and Dawn, the baliey's  had two children Val and Pauleen, the Hollier's had two children Sandra and Peter he was one of my best friend's.
  On the other side of the road lived  Mr and Mrs Filedhouse and there  children , Ivy,Billy, Sander, Irene, Christina, Beryl,June and Roy. I used to play with all the younger children in the street,  sometimes we used to go to a place called Whatson Pool which was really the old Handsworth colliery, the colliery had big slag heaps which were still hot we used to  run up-down them it was  great fun  also on the land around the pool there were some old air-raid shelters where we used to play at all sorts of games, in the pool itself a there were as various types of fish and a big cat fish known as the Daddy of them all.

      I also remembering and a grocer shop being on the  left hand side and further down a sweetshop on the right handside,  just below on the  left handside there was a hairdressers and another grocer shop further down on the left-hand side another grocer's  shop and on the corner of Lees Street the outdoor. At the bottom of the road was the Real, across the road on the other coner  of Lee Street was a another grocer's shop, just above the Real was the coal yard  across from here was The Alex's  across Kent Street North on the coner a greengrocer's and a the fish-and-chip shop.
    At the bottom of  Devonsire Street  if you turned left you went into Devonshire Avenue where the posh houses were, also Samuel Grove and Toogoods the tube makers. from Rod Scott


 I lived at no 70 Devonshire Street from 1961 to 1969. I went to
 Benson Road and William Murdock schools. I thought you might like this photograph, it was taken in the backyard of 70 Devonshire Street about 1966, the man sitting by the window is Lewis ( Fred ) Bassett, he worked at the salvage department in Rotten Park Street at the time, the lady with her back to us was called  Mrs Dent.  The tin bath (on the wall) .....  you took your life in your hands when you filled it up from the old Ascot water heater, not to get overcome by the gas fumes, four large saucepans of water got put on top of the stove to help out. We left in 1969 for Chelmsley Wood.
Roy Bassett 28/11/02.

This photograph of no 70 Devonshire Street was taken about 1966, we lived here from 1961 - 1969, I think that some repair work was being done to the electricity sub station. At no 72 lived Ginnie and Joe Clapham and their sons Peter and Michael, and later the Browns. At no 74 lived Mr Mason, followed by a lady called Mrs Henry and her young family. At no 76 lived Mr and Mrs McCann and their sons Peter and Joseph, I think that they also had a daughter, I remember being good friends with Joseph. At no 78, the first house in the next block down lived Mrs Lowe.
Roy Bassett     Email     23/02/03

This photograph was taken about 1967 in the yard at the side of 70 Devonshire Street. The guy is Dennis Bassett, and the bike is a 1965 Arial Sports Arrow. The fenced off area was an electricity sub station, this was put there in the early 60's after an air raid shelter that stood there had been demolished.
Roy Bassett 02/01/03Email  

This is a photo of my mother Mr's B Costin taken by me Rod Scott in 1965, in the yard where we lived. Mom lived at 16 Devonshire Street 1932 -1976, then 71b Norton Street till 1986. by  Rod Scott  23/02/03

ROD SCOTT in Devonshire Street 1965

DON STREET18/05/07

DON STREET18/05/07
Remembering the days of the Bookies,I recall the first one,he was the local milkman,name Mr Clackett from Peel St,he drove a pony & trap cart,delivering milk from a churn on one side a pint or quart,and placed your Bets in the other.In later years became licenced and opened betting shop in Foundry Road/James Turner Street corner.
The bookies in those days had lookouts,watching for the police,and I remember the day that they raid the bookies in our Don Street, I heard the lookout Wally Bright shout to the old lady the cops are coming. The police arrived in a open top car,and one of them was carrying a bucket,they called Mrs Peck open the doors,but she would not let them in, they smashed the door open to enter, with the old lady screaming leave me alone.
Later I found out the reason for the bucket, it was cement to seal up a letter box in the entry were people used to drop their bets in. The Bookmaker was named Ernie Hunter from Devonshire Streer.
Looking back it reminded me of the {The KeystoneCops} at the Saturday Morning Flicks
Once again happy times Best wishes to all on your Website
Colin Mills

DON STREET                                                                                                                                                I was born in Don Street  we lived right opposite a scrap yard, and on the corner was a pub called "The Don".The local sweet shop was just on Lodge Road called Goodacres any one remember it?  I also remember All Saints Hospital and recall the patients would at times jump over the wall to escape.                                                                                                                                           The Recreation Ground (Rec) in Musgrave Road and the gully that lead to Talbot Street were places we played for many an hour.
I would love to here from anyone who knew me Janet Diane Hunt (nee Cantell)  david@diehunt.fsnet

DON STREET 15/09/03

Does any one remember any McNallys that lived at 39 Don Street in the 50s they are relations and that was the last known adress we had, they are uncles of my mother who needs to make contact any info would be great  Siobhan Email:

The DON public house corner Don Street and Lodge Road and group of the Don's customers
man on extreme right of the group is Mr Alf Cratmail, he used to live with my mother, me and my sister Sheila at 16 Devonshire Street, he was known in the area as a tail biter, people used to bring their dog's to have the tail's nipped. (The Don photo from Mc Joseph)
Story and group photo from Roderick Scott   Email  04/03/03


My name is Hazel Nunn (nee Clarke) I went to All Saints School and then onto Handworth New Road we lived at 22 Don Street. My mother (Ethel Cantell) opened a cafe in Bacchus Road 1957 - 1958. I have a brother Kenneth Cantell & sister Diane Cantell. I was friends with Ronald Smith "smudge" & Raymond Smith whose parents owned the pub on the corner of Don Street [THE DON].  Also, June Savory, Vera Tapp, Jean Whitehouse and Patricia Bailey. Would love to hear from any of them please Email:                                                                     The pub opposite the asylum was called the "Don" it was on the corner of Don Street and Lodge Road near Chris Featherstones the butcher --by Danny Clawley

DON STREET    19/01/04
I'd be very interested in anyone with any recollections of Harriet Heath who lived in Don Street.
I'm researching her husband John Joseph Heath who died in the Battle of the Somme in 1916, while serving with the Birmingham Pals.
She went on to remarry, becoming Harriet WHITEHOUSE.  Her son, my grandad Charlie Heath wrote this letter to my Mom before he died which triggered my interest. He had just read Kathleen Dayus' famous book 'All My Days':
Grandads letter
"I was born in 1911, and my father was killed in that war, in the Battle of the Somme in 1916. My mother was left with 5 children: Auntie Kay, Uncle George, Uncle Bill, Uncle Tommy, and of course myself (age 5). (She re-married later as you know) So you can imagine the hard times being with us the same as Kathleen Dayus the author depicts - they certainly were! We as a family never went Hop-picking - thank God! But we knew of it and many families in our area were quite familiar with the proceedings related to it. I do remember, bread and lard, and bread and dripping and fish and chips for 3d. We used to get a penny on a Monday and 2d on a Saturday from our Mother's pension, and run anyone's errands for a few coppers. With the 2d on a Saturday we used to go to the afternoon matinee at Winson Green Picture Palace and we used to think it wonderful and terrifically exciting as kids, but if we spent any of the 2d we'd had it, couldn't go in. I remember crying on one occasion, because I'd bought a pennyworth of shrimps, and one of my DAD'S army mates gave me 2d to go in."
Simon Fielding  


I used to live in Hockley on Dover Street but I believe from what my Aunt says that it is all gone now, I know that St. Chrysastums Church ( I don't know if that is spelt correctly)( St. Chrysostom) has gone and I remember Bates and Goodes right on the corner could it still be there? and the little sweetshop run by Miss Webb a funny little old dear and then there was Miles fish and chip shop (Park Road). I must tell you that since having found this web site I have remembered so much.
My Husband and I and our daughter have been back to England 3 times my Husband thinks its absolutely great and wants to know so much about everything. While looking at your pictures of the Winson Green area I was showing him the main entrance to the prison he couldn't imagine living that close to a prison I was very familiar with it because my Dad used to work for the Great Wester Railway very close to All Saint's Church and he used to make deliveries to the prison and sometimes I would travel with him on these journeys. Well I mustn't ramble on, I don't know if you knew Dorothy Marshall and remember Miss Hogarth a teacher from Handsworth New Road School.
by Rita and Ken Moor

DUDLEY ROAD                                                                                                                                   Methodist Church more memories 09/09/09
I have been looking through the Winson Green site once more, and saw an entry for Dudley Road which talks about the Methodist Church between Chiswell Road and Heath Green Road . I remember another use for the hall at the rear of the Church.
I attended City Road Secondary Modern School in 1952 and because the school was over-crowded, they used the Methodist Church hall as an annex to accommodate at least one of the first year classes. It was a 2 storey building and the top floor was used as a classroom (Miss Navavarion was the teacher - sorry if I have mis-spelled the name) and, because there was no play area, the bottom room was used at break time. We were warned to be careful because the floor downstairs was not as sound as it could have been (no health and safety in those days). However, 11 year olds being 11 year olds, we took no notice. One day, I was happily skipping away while two of my friends were turning the rope, when all of a sudden I disappeared through the floor up to my waist (luckily there was no cellar and I landed on a dirt floor). Of course I got told off for disobeying but luckily I wasn't hurt. I can't remember if the floor was repaired but we continued to use the hall as a classroom for the rest of the school year but I have no idea if the school continued to use it as an annex after that.
Dorothy Lane

DUDLEY ROAD  (Summerfield Community Centre) 01/03/09
At the beginning of the 1980'sI worked, for about a year, as a community worker in Summerfield Community Centre located in the old school at the top of Winson Green Road, on the corner of Dudley Road (opposite the park).  It was my responsibility to do the room bookings, among other things. One evening, I'd booked the local Labour and the local Conservative parties into the same meeting room! I was told about it the next day, apparently everyone had been introducing themselves to each other and welcoming the 'new' members! I wish I'd been a fly on the wall.....
Does anybody have any memories of working at /using the centre? A lot went on there at the time, lots of groups, a small library, a toy library, a parent and baby group. A group of men met to play cards, a young people's drop in was held at the back of the building and it was a well used building all the time. I had great fun in the time I worked there, but it was a temporary contract and I had to move on. I lived in Summerfield Crescent at the time and enjoyed the leisurely stroll through the park, there and back.
Anne Woodford


Photo thanks to Mc Joseph

Photo thanks to Mc Joseph

Cutting from a Comic called "The Gem" published in 1932 Thanks to Mac Joseph

DUDLEY ROAD 14/03/08
I was looking at the advert. for J.Harrison, the magic supplier on Dudley Road, which had been posted by a site contributor. The late Mike Corbett, of Perrott Street, used to buy tricks there in the late 50's. Conjuring was his teenage hobby. Later in life, from 1985 until 2007 when he died, he put that hobby to great use as the full time, brilliant magician Corvelle the Conjurer.
Has anyone else any memories of the magic supply shop? Anne Woodford

DUDLEY ROAD 21/03/08 Methodist Church
One place I have not seen mentioned on your site is the Methodist Church on Dudley Road, it was about half way between Chiswell Road and Heath Green Road and was a very nice building to look at, I remember it had steps leading from the road to the doors and all the little kids could not resist running up those steps. At the side of the church was a passageway leading to the hall at the rear of the church. That was the meeting place for the Wolf Cubs and Boy Scouts also the Brownies and Girl Guilds. I was a member of the Wolf Cubs and I had earned myself a stripe on my sleeve. I was quite proud of my stripe because it meant I had a bit of authority. Then at one meeting I decided I wanted some sweets and just disappeared to the sweet shop, when I got back the Cub leader was livid and cut off my stripe. For a few weeks I did not bother going to the cubs then one day I met the Cub leader and she asked why I had stopped going. You took my stripe away I replied. If I give it back you will you come back she said. I thought for a moment or two then said if you give me two stripes I will. Thats how I got instant promotion in rank. I remember their was a lady minister there and if any of cubs misbehaved the cub leader would send us to see the minister. We did not get told off as such but we had to say our prayers for forgivness. About once a month we were expected to attend the church service. Yes I had some happy times in the cubs we used to go to the Scouts camp at Yorks Wood. Every year the the Scouts and Cubs had a big rally in Handsworth Park. Sadly the church was demolished in the late fifties or early sixties and a car showroom replaced it.
Regards John Gillon

DUDLEY ROAD 09/03/08 The Co-op Hall
The Co-op hall was on Dudley Road just past City Road heading towards Smethwick. On the corner of City Road was Lloyds Bank then there was a group of Co-op shops including a grocery, a butchers,, a greengrocers and I believe a bakery shop. I also remember they had a dry cleaners and I think many years ago a shoe shop. In those days the co-op was much bigger than they are today, I can remember there was three or four Co-op grocery shops on Spring Hill and Dudley Road. After I left school I did work for the Co-op for a short while. Well the Co-op hall was at the side of the shops and to get to it you went up a alley at the side. I have a few memories of it.
The first memory of the hall was when I was about seven or eight years of age. One day a school friend called for me on the way to school, when we got to the Dudley Road we could see clouds of smoke coming from the rear of the hall and I wondered what it was. My friend said he set fire to the grass in the field. Even though I was only young I realised he had done wrong and I told him I wanted nothing to do with it. But within a few days I had to find out what was in the field that was hidden by those great advertising hoarding next to the Co-op hall, so I sneaked up the alley to find out, there was an overgrown piece of land but the most interesting thing for a eight year old to discover was a concrete air raid shelter. After that it was our den and we spent many happy hour in it. But I think every tramp for miles around must have been there it stunk.
A few years later we use to go around the back of the hall for a crafty smoke I suppose I would be about twelve years old. One Saturday evening I was there with a friend and there was a West Indian wedding reception going on in the hall. The next thing we know we was invited in and given food and soft drinks which we enjoyed.
Then at about sixteen I joined a youth club that was held in the hall once a week. Some of the lads would go missing with their girls friends for a while and I think it could have been to the air raid shelter but I am not sure if it was still there.


DUDLEY ROAD 27/11/07
"Photograph courtesy of Mrs. P. Kent"

The Birmingham Arms
38 Dudley Road corner of Heath Street South
1868 publican Jas Haynes no listing for Dudley Road prior to this date in Directories.
1878 to 1903 publican Newsome Thwaite
1904 to 1915 publican Arthur Floyd
1921 publican Walter Clulee
Thank to John Houghton houghton,  
for this information.

DUDLEY ROAD 10/11/07

A  tram 189 on route 29 junction Dudley Road and  Winson Street date1950's ???                       Many Thanks to  Alan Elliott for the Photo

The photograph of the tram on Dudley Road sent to you by Alan Elliott I found most interesting. You or Alan asked when in the fifties was the photo taken, well the Birmingham City Transport withdrew the trams on the Dudley Road services in September 1939 so it must have been before then. The 29 service ran from Edmund St. to Bearwood via Dudley Rd. When the trams were withdrawn in 1939 the bus service that replaced them became the B82.
I'm sure someone can put a more exact date on the photo if we try hard enough.
Keep up the good work,

DUDLEY ROAD 26/06/07



DUDLEY ROAD 08/03/07
Just discovered your site and already been in touch with old school friends & neighbors I was born in 1940 opposite the Grove Picture House on Dudley Road. I  would love to hear from anyone who remembers the Hardmans keep the good work up ted. Ray Hardman  Email:


Thanks to Mc Joseph 05/08/06

Thanks to Mc Joseph 05/08/06

DUDLEY ROAD 13/04/03
I lived in Winson Green for the first fourteen years of my life, we lived in a back yard on Dudley Road between the Windmill public house and Hooper street. I attended Stewart Street & Barford Road Schools  till 1960.  Thanks  Arthur Killeen

 I am interested to find out any information about the old Barker and Allen Foundry on Dudley Road/Spring Hill   Richard Simonds

Just spotted your note Richard on the Winson Green website. This factory was nearly opposite Dudley Road Hospital, was it not? I seem to remember that, when I was in the A.T.C. during W.W.2 1943, we used the canteen at this factory for band practise. I think that the bandmaster probably worked there during the day. I was born near there in 1930 and went to Dudley Road school and Barford Road.
It's an interesting site isn't it?
Mike Green

DUDLEY ROAD 06/06/05
We lived in the old M/B cottage's, Dudley Rd, the address was 5/512 it was next to Helens Cafe, then started M/B, in fact we were the last house in Brum, right on the border with Smethwick, the brook ran under our house and each time it overflowed our coal cellar would flood not far from the top step,we could'nt get to the gas meter to put the pennies in or get to the coal. And we had plenty of mice but I loved it there. my happiest days.
Helens cafe was owned by Mrs Helen Lancaster who was the sister of Alex Douglas, he owned a coffee bar just above the Engine Pub and also ran the hot dog, burger and fleur de lyes stand. I worked for both of them while living down "our end" of Dudley Rd including Moilliett St, with relatives in Winson St, Heath St, Dugdale St and Abberley St the now forgotten end of the almost forgotten Winson Green.
regards Pearl Cutler [nee Lawrence]



My best mate growing up in Dugdale Street was Godfrey Rudge, and we are still in contact to this day. These four photographs were all taken in the Dugdale Street.
I would love to talk to anyone who is interested in this area.
Regards Alan Miles

DUGDALE STREET number 14. 27/02/2012 and 16/03/2012

My family lived at No 14 Dugdale Street from the early 1930`s till 1958 I have enclose some photographs.

This photo is of Maureen (my twin sister), Robert (elder brother), Tibby our cat and me Michael taken about 1950.

The second photo is Christine Nester, John Hobbs, Shirley Hobbs, Pauline Perk, Maureen, Me and John Lester (my Mate).

The Cromwell Hall Anniversary Parade marching along Dugdale Street in the early 1950`s, (Cromwell Hall was in Heath Green Road).

Me and my twin sister taken around the same time as the issue of the last Ration Book
Do you remember the Ration book this one dated 1953-1954 was the last one to be issued.

This photograph was taken early 2012 where number 14 Dugdale Street once stood.  


Down the Dudley Road was Jesson`s the confectionery shop where we used to take our ration books every Saturday morning for our ration of sweets. Up the Dudley Road (turn left from Dugdale Street) we used to get the family grocery from Harrod`s Grocery Store. I used to go into Harrod`s regularly to ask Mr Harrod if he had any broken biscuits, empty wooden boxes and any OXO tins to keep my little bits of junk, Ha Ha. The wooden boxes, I took down our cellar to chop up for fire wood, that was one of my chores
Kind Regards  Michael Pinkney


I wonder you or any of the visitors to your 'Winson Green web-site have any information about 'Feathers Electical Shop' which was once at no.453 Dudley Road (between the junction with Dugdale Street and the junction with Halburton Street).
Until about 1954, I lived with my parents and my grandmother Violet 'Queenie' Bartlett at number 11 Dugdale Street. Our garden ran along the back of the shops on Dudley Road, the last one being Feather's shop. I used to play with the little girl who lived there (Hazel). We lost touch after we moved and I now wonder what became of the Family and the business. I believe the shop is still there, but no.11 Dugdale Street is not. I think it was the only terraced house still inhabited on that side at the time, tho' I do remember the 'court' style houses on the other side of the street.
I have attached a photograph of our garden showing the ends of the Dudley Road shop gardens on the left, and the side-wall of the Grove Cinema and the houses in Halburton Street at the end. It was taken in the very late 1940's or very early 1950's.                                                                     ROGER SUTTON

I was brought up in 1/16 Dugdale St. left in 1968 aged 16 great to see this site brings back mostly happy memories took my kids to the back to backs in Brum they could not believe where I came from.
Anthony Delaney

My grandparents TOM and ROSE HABBERLEY lived in DUGDALE STREET in 1930, as did my greatgrandparents TOM AND LILY HABBERLEY. Tom and Lily lived in Dugdale Street until their deaths in 1952 and 1962 respectively. Any information, stories or, hopefully, photographs, would be greatly appreciated.
Many thanks Barbara Nicholls

My name is Chris Price and from the age of about 10 to 19 I lived in Winson green, I first lived at No 14 Dugdale St with my mom Edie and my dad Ken and my four sisters Marilyn, Denise, Yvonne (Bonny ) and Karen.
I was born at the maternity hospital on Lordswood Rd in Harbourne on the 16th of Feb 1949 at the time my Mom and Dad lived with my Moms folks in Guest St Hockley, then we moved to 99 Victoria Rd Aston with my Dads folks.
My Mom and Dads first house of thier own was 3 back of 9 Frank St Balsall Heath, we moved from there to Dugdale St in 1959 , I was Fifteen at the time.and  went to Summerfield Junior School
( does anyone remember Mr Dowling or Mr Moss from the annex ?)
names I can remember from Dugdale St are Marion and Brenda Mason from next door who's mom was a German lady, Trevor Billingham, John and Derek Causer, Lilly Gardener,Janet Taylor and Willy Carson who sadly got killed on his bike while out with another mate of ours Anthony. ..
We moved to Aberdeen St in 1964 when I was about fourteen and lived at No26 a couple of doors away from Johnny Dunkley, I had a mate called Billy Wylman from round the corner in Peel St, we all used to knock about in the Route 66 Cafe across the road from the Smiths Arms, great days sadly missed.
Chris price

EVA ROAD 09/10/09
I visit your website frequently hoping to find a friend from my long distant past. I am now 81 years old having lived a very full life which started for me in Eva Road, Winson Green. At least, my memories start from there. I was actually born at Walsall Wood in Staffordshire. Recently I had a surprise letter from a schoolmate who is now living in Guernsey and we now exchange letters. I felt that many of my contempories from the pre-war years in the district are now spread far and wide over the world. It woud be a wonderful thing if by some stroke of magic we could all meet up again.
Keep up the good work Ted, you started something wonderful.
John Bird

EVA ROAD 19/06/09
In my advancing years I find myself reminiscing about my childhood and later years as a resident of Eva Road. As an octogenarian my memories are mainly pre-war as I enlisted in the RAF when I became old enough in 1945 and only returned to Winson Green briefly before eventually settling down in Cambridgeshire.
I particularly remember the family who lived next door to mine at No. 60 Eva Road. Their name was Jones and I have vivid memories of Betty and Johnny,who were nearest my age. Are they still with us ?              If you are out there get in touch.

EVA ROAD 10/08/08
Just checked out your web site. It was a lovely walk down memory lane for me. I was born at 83 Eva Road in 1948 in my aunt Peg's front room. Are there are photo's of Eva Road? My aunt's family were called Sherry. Sadly there are few remaining now scattered far and wide but my memories of my life there will stay with me forever.                                                                                              Thank you for a great site!! Best wishes. Margaret Close

EVA ROAD 13/04/08
What a excellent site I came across by accident. I'm now 46 and lived at 16 Eva Road from 1973 till about 1978, I loved the area, there was always something to do. Play football down Blackpatch Park, go to 39th Boys Brigade opposite the Prison. I attended Handsworth New Road School. I now live in Mansfield, so if anyone knows me, please e-mail me, I'd love to hear from you all. Rob Hornby

EVA ROAD trip to Trentham Gardens

Found this picture last week it's an Eva Road trip to Trentham Gardens I think its "1950ish" does any one recognise it ??Dave Chapman  02/09/02  are you on it? Young man bottom right in a white jumper is Garry Smith author of three books about Winson Green. 

EVA ROAD  23/07/07
If Doug Cutler of 23 Eva Road is still with us ,or anyone who knows him, could you please contact me.
John Bird    

EVA ROAD 09/05/07

A photo copy sent to me a couple of years ago, a sight which will bring back memories of Sunday mornings down the Green. The 39th B.B band parading along what I think is Eva Road, at the back of Foundry Road school.  Maybe someone can confirm or correct my guess.                             Margaret  Evans, E-mail

EVA ROAD 17/12/06

This photograph was taken in 1931 and people in the picture are myself and my mother. The picture was take in what I call "little Eva Road" the short stretch of road betweenPerrott Street and James Turner Street.Roy Freeman 

EVA ROAD 18/11/06
My name is Doug Cutler and I lived at 23 Eva Road I am now 81 years old. Jackie Greasley was a school pal of mine and after reading Jack's sister's message on the web I have often wondered what became of him. I know he joined the navy and married a New Zealand girl and that was the last I heard of him. The site is great - it is lovely to see the old places.
Doug Cutler  Email:

EVA ROAD  11/05/05
I lived in Eva Road with my 3 brothers Roger,  Derek and  Kevin we attended the local shcools.
Does anyone remember us???? Smashing memories
Eddie Ingram   Email:

EVA ROAD 25/11/04
I am trying to find information on my late father in law Fred MASON, who when he married in Norfolk in 1944, gave his home address as Eva Road, Winson Green.He was serving in the Oxford & Bucks Light Infantry at the time His father was stated to be Frederick Mason, wheelwright deceased. I'm almost sure his mother was called Mary as my husband can vaguely remember meeting her once as a child.
My daughter, a "Mason" would love to know more about her grandfathers roots.
Pat Mason

update 18/10/08                        CAN YOU HELP WITH THIS ENQUIRY???
Many moons ago I contacted you about my late Father in Law Fred MASON whose address on his marriage certificate in 1944 in Norfolk was given as Eva Road. You kindly put my plea for information on your website but despite several folks contacting me about the Mason family they were all false trails alas! I have been plodding away to find this elusive man and his roots! I have now discovered his real name was probably Fred DAVIS/DAVIES and was born illegitimately to an Esther in Birmingham, Ladywood in 1921. He had an older sister called Mary who married Stanley J CHALMERS in Birmingham in 1938. They had children Judith ( no not the one from the TV!) Patricia and possible an Alan . Does any one remember this family?                                          Patricia Mason ( or should that be Davis?! )

EVA ROAD  18/03/04
 I was born in 1933 & lived at 28 Eva Road until 1948 then moved to Handsworth New Road until I got married in 1956.
My father Stan Cleveland was born in Winson Green in 1906 and lived all his life of 95 years in Winson Green. He owned the wireless electrical shop called WMS from 1934 until 1948 and it was open all through the war to charge the wet batteries for the wireless sets. Our neighbours at 24 Eva Road were the Wakelams, Frank Wakelam Senior was born 1900 and lived all his life except for spells in the army in Eva Road.
He finished up as a prison officer, at Winson Green. I was living in Eva Road all through the war and remember the firebombs falling and watched the Tizer pop factory go up in a fireball. I also at the age of 8 helped to put out incendary bombs that fell in our back yard. My father Stan was also the local builder and had a yard at the bottom of Foundry Road opposite the Railway Inn. He also had a builders hardware shop on the corner of Peel Street for many year.                                    Derek Cleveland

We lived at 73 Eva Road Winson Green  it was my gran's houes before we had it her next door neihbours where Mr & Mrs Gurley I saw a message somewhere on your site that someone wanted any info' on this couple they lived at 75 Eva Road I knew them well as a child as gran & Mrs Gurley used to talk over the fence a lot but they left 75 Eva Road in the fifties & I don't know where they moved to.
My gran & grandad where named Thomas Wood & Emmeline Wood nee Monks & they had lived in this house since before the 1914/18 first world war because I have a photo of the family in the garden & grandad is in first world war uniform & gran is in a long dress .I also have a photo of the vicar Rev Johnson at a christening at All Saints Church somewhere as well.                                     Sheila Savery

This is the photograph of my gran & grandad Thomas Wood & Emmeline Wood (nee Monk)
and children granddad is in his uniform from the 1914/18 war on his right is his son Alfred then my gran holding Nellie the tall girl in white is Lily the small one in the dark clothes is my wonderful mom May and the one on the end is Violet, this photo was taken in the garden of no. 73 Eva Road

73 EVA ROAD   12/11/04
I was born at 73 Eva Road in 1923. In the picture you have of the Wood Family my father was the young man in that picture.  He joined the RFC at the age of seventeen. Later I lived with my parents and two brothers in rooms at 116 Eva Road. The five of us shared one bedroom.
In 1928 I entered Foundry Road Infant School. I believe that Miss Tuff (I am not sure of the spelling of the name) was the Head Teacher. I do know I was taught by a Miss 0'Connor. I think ladies named Davies, Whitehouse and Rodgers were also on the staff but I am not absolutely sure. I am, however, very sure of one thing. Many children including myself had free school dinners because our dads were unemployed.  (Good Old Days -that's a joke). I left Foundry Road School in September 1929 because the family got a council house in Erdington.  My mother thought she had gone to live in a little palace after 116 Eva Road.
There were two shops in 'Little Eva Road' Blacktops and Flemings. There was a shop owned by Mrs Clenton. in James Turner Street and an outdoor public house.
The following are the names of the families who lived in Eva Road in 1929 from 73 Eva Road to the junction with James Turner Street - Wood, Gurley, Tubbs, Castle, Brown, Phillips, Fish and Chip Shop and a house/shoe repairers.
Two years ago I visited the Black Patch Park. Why has that very delightful and pleasant park been allowed to become such a horrible dump?
I now live in Clare in Suffolk. It is a town with about 2,000 inhabitants.
Alfred T Wood


C.W.Cheney & Son . . . Factory Road . . . Hockley

My name is Eric Taylor. I am 73 years old and for over twenty years I worked (I use the word loosley) at C.W.Cheney & Son or just plain "Cheney's" at it w as affectionally known.
The impressive building itself stood in Factory Road (A strange coincidence. I don't know which came first, the building or the roads name but it seems fitting that it should have been named after the large factory or ( in "Street of Brum part 1" page 57 Carl Chinn mentions Factory Road and refers to Matthew Boulton and the factory he had built in 1764/5.)
According to the front entrance the building was erected in 18?? I can't quite remember. But what I do remember is that "Cheney's" was Factory Road. The owner Mr. Cheney must have been a very forward thinking person as his factory was miles ahead (apart from the wages) of any other factories in the area. It was a lock manufacturer which produced several types of very high quality locks for suitcases and travel luggage. It was said that he held the World market for them and I for one certainly believed that he did.
The Factory was self sufficient. Apart from the various metals that were bought in, everything else was done in house on the premises to make the locks. A large cutting shop which produced the many assorted blanks needed to make the locks. There were five large production departments which shaped on power presses the various components for the locks. A plating shop which covered all types of coverings from nickel to brass coating to chrome etc. An extremely large warehouse where the inspection and packaging was done very carefully by what seemed to be a hundred of young ladies (very popular place at Christmas) and a despatch department where the finished goods were finally crated and sent off to their various home and world wide locations.
Of course a firm this size needed a Toolroom, a Maintenance dept, Electricians dept, a Laquering shop and a canteen which served hot meals at dinner time. There was also a First Aid room which was run by the formidable Sister Williams. A proper Welsh Dragon that stood no nonsense whatsoever. At times she would stand outside the ladies toilets and moniter the girls as they went in (probably for a smoke and a chat) When she thought their time was up in she would charge and rout them all out and back to work. There was a social club run by a works committee which arranged various functions. For example at Christmas all employees with young children could take their kids to the firms Christmas Party. There would be food, fun and games and finish off with a visit from Santa plus a real good present to take home afterwards. The slightly older children were treated to a day out in town by coach to see a Pantomime at either The Birmingham Hippodrome or The Alex Theatres.
Even the pensioners who had retired were not forgotten. They were given a Christmas hamper complete with a card to go with it. If I remember correctly it was the firms van driver "Ronnie Hawker" who made the deliveries. As for the workers, we received a full weeks wages with no tax or anything taken from it. (A Christmas present indeed) Plus there was always a great Christmas Party held on the day we broke up. Every department trimmed up their shop for the occasion, but I think it was the warehouse who always came off best.
The power presses that Mr.Cheney purchased were all of the same kind and the tools that went into them were designed to fit  any press. Each department (and remember there were five) had a different line of locks to produce. Most departments had roughly 70 presses with a labour force of 48 women to work them. Also the same department would have an assembly shop, where about 30 women would assemble the locks ready for inspection and packing.
The whole factory was a great place to work. There were generations of families. Husbands & Wives, Sons & Daughters, Brothers & Sisters. It always seemed to me that once you started working there, you never left. There were lots of employees with over thirty or forty years service in. Some of the men had worked there before the start of the Second World War enlisted, done their service and returned back to "Cheney's" to resume their various jobs. A large oak memorial board was made with all the "Cheney" mens names and ranks on it painted in gold. It was placed on the wall in the Reception Area so that all visitors to the factory could see it.
I'm sure that if an old "Cheneyite" reads this they will have a special memory from them days and could perhaps share it with us.
I've put down a few names of some of the people who worked there which might jog a few memories
Mr Eric Constable . . . . . . . . . . . . Works Manager
(He managed the factory after the death of Old Mr.Cheney on behalf  Mr. Cheney's son Howard)
The following names were all foremen at sometime or other throughout the years and up to the time I left in 2000. Billy Partridge, Arthur Hatton, Vic Hipkiss, Ted Terry, Billy France, Harry Beard, Tommy Hughes, Billy Trueman, Jack Potter, Albert Kench, Reg Kite, Tommy Woods, Tommy Mortiboys, Ron Ffyfer, Bob Troman, Ray Howell, Doug Bradley, Joe Archer, Frank Archer, Jack Horton, Dennis Head, Tom Carty, Brian Smith, John Timms "Rudy" Eric Taylor.
Harry Hunt The Personal Officer, Sister Williams The Factory nurse, Edie Sister Williams sidekick, Norah Canteen manageress, Tommy Hawker Night Watchman
Luigi Night Watchman, Tommy Gloster Works Convener, Doreen Such Works Convener,
Albert Rawlings Works Convener,   Miss Joan Woods Wages Office, Arthur Wall The Firms unofficial photographer, Elaine Dovey The Firms girl friday, John Constable A true gentleman; and very good at crosswords, Vic Buckley Affectionally known as the Factory cat. There are tons more worthy of a mention my apologies to anyone I have not included but my sole aim is to get this great old factory "Cheneyland" on record.

Ask any man who worked at Cheney's in the 1965-1980 years and I'll bet you a days pay he was in a Cheney Dart Team. If a new man applied for a job interview there I'm sure that the Foreman who did the interviews first words would be "Do you play darts?" If the poor mans answer was "No" . . . Tough If it was "Yes" . . . "When can you start?"
Originally it was all started by a chap who was a labourer in E.Department where I worked. His name was George "Chips" Raffety. He got a few chaps interested and started up a little league. He did the fixtures crudely in pencil and pinned them each week onto the Works Notice Board. That's where I came in. I offered to type them out each week together with the match results and the league positions and a few extra copies for those taking part. The interest around the factory grew and Inter-Departmental Darts was born. Shortly after that "Chips" got a better job at a nearby foundry "Avery's" and left. (Goodbye Mr. Chips) I then took over from what he had started and ran the Darts Competitons for nigh on the next fifteen years. I must hastily add that my wife Sheila, who did not work at Cheney's did a hell of a lot behind the scenes work for me. At first the different departments took on their own personal and department name. There was The Maintenance, The Toolroom, The Staff, Toolsetters United, The Polishing Shop and The Elect etc etc. They all bought their own dartboard and fitted it up in an odd corner of their department. Later these corners would become more revered than a Temple. As the Darts League became more and more popular more teams wished to enter the league. Mates from different parts of the factory would band together and form a team giving themselves a team name. for example "The Super Six" "The Golden Arrows" The Minstrels" "The Breakaways" were just a few of the many. Over the years the league became bigger and better. I introduced Trophies and Plaques for the various Winners and Runners up. We had a Works Individual Champion, Doubles Knock-Out plus other contests too numerous to mention. Then the women decided that they wished to enter an all girls team into the league and so the famous "Mini-Six" was born. Six ladies from all over the factory Staff & Works combined. They were never going to win any major trophies but they could upset teams averages which could lose them points.. Should a male team lose to them they were never allowed to forget believe me.
I kept the Darts Treasury going with various raffles and Name the number cards and with the help from darts members (Bob Busby & Pat Keogh) who would take the tickets etc around the different Dept's I was able to buy the trophies needed at the end of the season. Then it was decided that instead of just handing the winners engraved trophies at the factory a proper presentation should be made. So I decided to hold a Darts Presentation Dance. This is where my dear wife Sheila came in. She could charm the ducks out of the water. She would ring round various places to get the cheapest venue plus the cheapest disc jockey (Brother John) plus the cheapest engraver and so on and on. From then on The Darts presentation Dance was to be an annual event. The Works Manager Mr. Eric Constable would attend and together with his wife would present each receiver with his or hers plaque. Arthur Wall (The firms unofficial phoptographer would take photo's of the presentation which you could purchase from him at a very reasonable price)
Mr. Eric Constable donated a large silver cup, which we named "The Constable Cup" which was presented each year to the League Winners. It was a beauty of a cup that would have put Wembley to shame.
Later I began to use the local British Legion Clubs (Bacchus Road & Worlds End Lane) as our venues as they didn't really charge much for the room and they were glad of the extra business (All Cheneyites loved their ale)
Yes looking back on those years I have some great memories. The Darts League was a great ice breaker on the factory floor. No matter which department you worked in you would have at some time played against someone from other departments which would always be a talking point if you met up during the course of the day. You could make friends or rivals, it depended on who had won or lost!
It was with great sadness that in 1979 the factory was took over by a German Company. Redundancies were rife and practically half the factory workers, including myself, said their sad goodbyes. The C.W.Cheney Darts League was no more but I'm certain that a lot of the old employees will still remember with fondness those happy times.
I feel it only fair to mention some of the teams and their playes. My apologises to anyone who I may have missed out. Some names might appear twice as over the years players would swap teams.
The Warehouse . . . Billy Trueman, Ernie Farr, Brian Lancaster, Ray Howell, Kenny Burchell.
The Engineers . . . John Timms, Martin Finch, John "Oggy" Hancox, Albert Rawlings.
The Shadows . . . Ronnie Carpenter, Peter Badger (The tallest guy in the League) Dick Richards, Howard Jenkins, John "Nobby" Cannon.
The Cheney Rangers . . . Eric Taylor, Dick Richards, Bob Busby, Dave Field, G.J.Smith, Frank "Golden Hand" McArdle.
The Super Six . . . Tom Carty, Joe Carty, Doug Turvey.
The Minstrels . . . Lloyd Burgher, Charlie Soloman.
The Staff . . . Arthur Allen, Mac Clifford, Billy Partridge, Ted Terry.
The Toolroom Rovers . . . Alan Chambers, John "Oggy" Hancox, Derek Hannah, Tony Hipkiss.
The Golden Arrows . . . Clive Hughes, Barry Martin. Bob Busbie.
Toolsetters United . . . Eric Taylor, Bob Hubble, Peter Hathaway, Martin Finch, Roy Stubbs and Tommy "Mr. Spectacular" Slater (Always pulled something out of the hat for us)
The Elect . . . Brian Smith, Albert Kench, Roy Jones, Dave Everett, Kevin Tighe and Alan Cole (Who practically won everthing that was going)
The Hose Clip Dept . . . Billy Warren, Vic Dangerfield.
The Mini-Six . . . Phyliss Bickley, Elaine Dovey, Pat Keogh.

In 1979 I and several others sadly took voluntary redundancies from C.W.Cheney & Son. In 1993 (After 14 years in the wilderness) I returned for the third time to my first love. The old firm was now a shadow of its former self. What had been a small empire was now condensed and confined to the downstairs floor space. The top floors had all been sold off to other small companies and were now off limits to Cheney employees. The old Warehouse had been transformed into the Cutting & Shearing Shop. The now small Toolroom had been placed at one end of the department whilst the Electics & Maintenance had been shuffled to one side of the same department. The rest of the floor space had been sectioned of into two halves; one for the power press production and the other half for Assembly, Packing and Despatch. the Plating Shop was where it had always been (It was far too dilapidated to move)
What amazed me most of all was that absolutely nothing had really changed. It was like going back in time or to put it plainer an extension of "The Black Country Museum!" The same power presses, the same assembly jigs, the same working condition, unfortunately the same wages and in several cases the same staff that had been there since the beginning of time.
Mr Graham Smith was now the Managing Director. Arthur Hatton was the Foreman/Supremo. He was in charge of everything (Apart from the Toolroom & Electric's) how he managed to run it all for all those years is beyond belief. Tom Carty was his second in command; he was another man who worked tirelessly for the Company. John Timms (Foreman) ( Now nicknamed "The Growler") ran the Toolroom together with Arthur Wall, Gerry, Jason (The First Aid Officer) and another chap (A Birmingham City supporter) whose name I can't remember. Albert Kench (Foreman) and Brian Smith ran the Electric & Maintenance Dept.
Dennis Snape & Stuart Waldron were the production toolsetters. Rudy Cohen was the Cutting shops leading hand Len Robinson his right hand man. His operators came and went with the exception of Peter Badger (The tallest guy Cheney's ever hired) I was able on my return to persuade a former toolsetter from way, way back to rejoin the Company. His name was Martin Finch (A pretty good Darts player as I remember)
Ronnie Carpenter well deserves a mention. He served as the firms Shearer for well over thirty years and still came in after his retirement to help train a new shearer whenever the occasion arose. Luigi and Vic Buckley were now the factory cats ( Never off the premises) acting as handymen and night watchman. And this guy called Ron looked after the Plating Shop again with various helpers. How he got that place to work at all was a modern day miracle. It was, I'm certain of, held together with paper clips, string and a wire coat hanger plus the never-ending attention it got from messer's Kench & Smith.
Upstairs in the Offices were Elaine Dovey (Cheney's Girl-Friday) John Constable (Another Cheney stalwart) John Hinton (Sales) Mr Larner and Joan & Teresa (Wages)
About three years after I had returned Mr Arthur Hatton retired (The end of a Legend) The Managing Director, I'm sure, acting on Arthur's advice split the factory floor into four quarters, Production/Assembly/Warehouse, Cutting & Plating shops. I together with Tom Carty, Rudy Cohen and this guy called Ron became the new department foremen. The next five or six years saw many comings and goings. Albert Kench retired (Brian Smith was made up to foreman) Graham Smith M.D. was replaced by the owner Mr Franchen's (Not sure of the spelling) daughter Pia (A tall willowy six foot blue eyed blonde with no real experience in management but pleasant enough to work with) At least she could get her father to pay the never-ending bills for the different metals we always needed. To be honest, by now, I think most of the factory floor could see the writing on the wall. Pia had returned to Germany. John Timms & Tom Carty were put in sole charge of running the factory production (And by Golly it really worked) until the money ran out. I remember quite well one morning sitting in my office with Tom Carty when Peter Badger burst in with the news that three "Blokes" (As Peter put it) had bought the factory lock, stock & barrel. There had been no previous news or rumblings of this and it came as a complete shock to everyone.
These three "Blokes" then proceeded to sell everything in the factory that was not tied down. Power presses, Assembly jigs, scrap iron and old obsolete perfectly good locks all went up for auction or off to the local scrap yard. The place was a circus. Timms & Carty did somehow manage to continue with current orders under very difficult circumstances and conditions.
The new owners rented parts of the factory floor out to another lock manufacturing company and again to a chap named Trevor who manufactured copper rings for Bulls noses (I kid thee not) The Plating Shop was sold off but the new owner kept this guy called Ron on as he was the only man on Planet Earth who could keep the place up and running.
It was now coming up to the end of 1999 and time for me at 65 to retire. In the year 2000 C.W.Cheney & Son finally closed its factory doors for the last time. Some of our popular lines in locks etc were bought up by another lock manufacture and transported to a place, I believe in West Bromwich. They took the machines & jigs etc and some of the existing staff and as far as I know they are still churning them out.
The Final story on "Cheneyland" is a sad one. There was a real good pension scheme set up by the original owner and management plus a workers settlement fund. All employees were in it and contributed to it all their working days. Apparently at the time of the factories closure there was near enough "Two and a half million pounds in the kitty" What exactly hapeened to it all I have no idea but what I do know is that it all disappeared and the factory workers were left with "Zilch!" Absolutely nothing for all those years they had faithfully worked for. Remember some of these employees had been with the firm for forty years. There was a fraud case brought up against the offenders. A trial has since been held and some of them went to prison. What the the final outcome was I can't with any proper knowledge say. There was a lot of newspaper coverage at the time and if you go to Google and type in C.W.Cheney's you will get the full story. The old building still stands proudly in Factory Road. I've heard several rumours as to what it is being used as today but if they are true I really can't say. It was a grand old firm to work for with memories galore and I'm happy to be just one of its many many employees.

C.W.CHENEY  12/09/08


                                                                  BRIAN SMITH 1942-2008

                                                                  BRIAN SMITH 1942-2008

Brian Smith (or Smithy as he was often called) was one of Cheney's electricians who worked for the firm for over forty years. I went to the same school as he did (Handsworth New Road) and can say without reservation that he was a great guy who will be sadly missed by all his friends, colleagues and workmates.
A much laid back character with a dry sense of humor he could discuss any subject on this planet and often did (On Cheney time of course) with the many, many workmates (Both Male & Female) he had made over the years he'd worked there. Sport, Films, Music, Politics and Travel just to name a few, no subject was Taboo. He was also an accomplished photographer and I can remember the how proud he was when he became a grandfather for the first time and brought photographs in of his new baby grand-daughter that he had taken to show off to all his workmates.
Brian was involved in everything. In Cricket he was Cheney's wicket keeper. Darts he was the captain of "The Elect" Darts team. In Snooker he was on the committee that ran the different tournaments. He and his lovely wife Pam would also organise days and nights out to various places i.e. The West Midlands Safari Park or Pub Skittles with a fish & chips supper to follow and together with his life long pal Albert Kench they organised a very popular "Rally Club" which I can tell you from experience was a really wonderful day out.
I ran a factory "Mastermind" kind of Quiz over a couple of weeks in the firms dinner time break and needless to say Brian won it. He beat my brother-in-law Billy Holmes in The Final.
At his place of work Brian's workbench would be littered with (Foreigners as they were called) old steam irons, electric kettles and toasters that the women had brought in for him to look at and hopefully repair. Come Christmas (His busiest time of the year for Foreigners) well, he was bogged down with dodgy Japanese Christmas tree lights that half the entire factory had brought in for him to fix.
But despite all that he did a marvelous job of keeping things running in the factory. New plant machinery, new overhead lighting and of course that "Ruddy Plating Shop" kept him and the other "Sparkies" (Messes Kench, Cole & Jones) busy but Brian always seemed to shine through with a smile and a very dry joke.
Brian had his serious side and will always be remembered as a reliable, sensible chap who could always come up with a possible solution to your queries. He was a very good Shop Steward for the electricians and I can remember on many occasions that when a factory problem at work cropped up regarding Union matters, "What does Smithy think about it" would be asked many times by fellow Shop Stewards.
Sadly "Smithy" passed away this month (September) but through this fond tribute I know he will always remain in the memories of those of us who knew and loved  Brian Smith . . . God Bless and rest in Peace.

                                       JOHN CANNON aka "Nobby" 1937-2008                                                16/11/08
Johnny Cannon (or "Nobby" as he was always called) in my book was Cheney's number one character. He worked (and again I use the word loosely) at the firm as a labourer but was known by all for his skills of buying and selling. Each morning he would arrive with some items in a tatty bag, usually long playing records, toothpaste, biro's etc. and by the end of the day had sold them to somebody on the firm. If you had something to sell then "Nobby" was the man to do it for you. He was by no means a good looker and had his leg pulled mercilessly by the lads in the Toolroom about his love life. One true story that comes to mind is of a Presentation Dance that was being held. "Nobby" had told everyone with pride that his new girlfriend was coming with him to see him being presented with a darts trophy he'd won.
No-one believed he had a girl friend so we were all astounded when "Nobby" arrived with a real stunner on his arm. "Nobby" had scrubbed up well and looked really smart in a new long brown leather coat. A short time into the evening "Nobby" went missing. He even failed to turn up for his trophy. The next day at work we asked what had happened to him and his "Bond Girl" He told us that he'd bought her a couple of cocktails and she went off to powder her nose. When she didn't come back he went looking for her only to find that she had cleared off taking his brand new leather coat with her. That was "Nobby" for you.
A complete character who I'm sure will be up there in the clouds trying to sell God a new puppy. God bless.

                                     EDGAR “DICK” RICHARD 1926-2009
Sadly another Cheney “Character” passed away this month, Dick Richards at the age of 83 years. He worked as a Shearer toolsetter/operator then became a power press toolsetter in the busy “Expanding Dept” from 1960 to 1980.Dick was well known throughout Cheney’s factory for his Domino League that he set up and ran on his own for many years. Again like the Darts League this too was very popular with half the male force of Cheney’s.
Many would say that Dick was an argumentive old cuss which would be fair comment but his heart was always in the right place. He held no grudges against fellow workers and would always be the first man up to the bar getting the first round in for all those present including his adversaries, some times after heated arguments, be they Dominoes, his love of Worcester cricket club or Union matters.
He brought many happy memories and plenty of unintentional laughs to those who worked in E.Dept. Those people could all tell you of his comical exploits that always caused a titter or two. With Dick in our department our days were never dull; he was the original fall guy. He played darts for my team “The Cheney Rangers” and in one crucial match against all the odds he won his game which was a decider and in doing so we won the League title.
A real strong union man, he became a shop steward who could and often would argue the cause till the moon came out. He was a good man to have at any meetings with the management, for while he was hammering away a certain point the rest of us had time to sit back and gather our thoughts, rethink and come back at the management from a different angle.
He was happily married with a family of seven children. Tragedy was no stranger to his life but he still soldiered on taking the knocks as they came. After he retired he did quite a lot of local Charity work and set up and ran a successful local pub Domino League. He was involved with The British Legion and attended many of their Remembrance parades.  Dick was buried alongside his wife Joan surrounded by his family and friends at Quinton Cemetery. Characters like “Dick Richards” are few and far between. He was a real gent and will be sorely missed.                                                      ERIC TAYLOR

                                               ROBERT BENJAMIN HUBBLE     1934 - 2010
It is with great sadness that I pass on the news that Bob Hubble passed away on Friday 14th May 2010. For ten years he had stubbornly fought off his battle with cancer but sadly he died in hospital with his wife Hazel present at his side.
Bob was a very popular guy at C.W.Cheney’s where he worked as a toolsetter for nigh on twenty five years till redundancy lifted its ugly head. His great happy smile and his genuine friendly manner will be remembered by all who knew and worked alongside him. He was the deputy foreman in a large lock production department where he supervised eighty power presses and fifty women operators of many nationalities. He also had fellow toolsetters working with him, myself included for twenty years. I can say with great honesty that he was well respected by us all. He was a real down to earth guy whom you could and did trust. Everyone was treated the same with no favoritism whatsoever. It was a pleasure to work alongside him.
He took an active part in many of the Cheney Social functions. He played cricket for the firm’s team, won quite a few trophies playing darts and was also a member of the Snooker Club, Camera Club and the Rally Club. His presence at any of these events was always welcome, for with him came his warm and friendly manner.
After being made redundant from Cheney’s he worked as a toolsetter for Frank Dudley’s and Swan Electrics which later became Moulinex. At both places it was no surprise that he made many new friends. He will I know be sorely missed by everyone who knew and loved him.
Bob’s funeral was attended by his wife Hazel and his daughter Karen, family relatives, friends and fellow workmates from Cheney’s.                                                                                                 ERIC TAYLOR





PHOTO taken in 2004  near the bottom end of Foundry Road and a painting by Ron Smith 
Does anyone have any recollection of the inhabitants of 103 Foundry Road, Mary Carey or Mick Gallagher being my grandmother and my father they lived in Foundry Road from the 1950’s until 1973. My father worked at Avery’s for over 25 years and also worked at the Handsworth Social Club in Ninevah Road. My grandmother was not a likeable person but would probably be remembered as a woman who liked her drink!!! Names I remember from the day are the Hawthorns and the Corry’s who lived on the other side of the Road. I also remember Leggets the corner shop and almost opposite Tommy’s the veg shop were we used to get tick until Friday. My friends in those days were mainly from Irish immigrant families the Donnelly’s lived off the Winson Green Road next to the Acorn pub. The Burn’s lived in Wellington Street opposite Rita Jelly’s shop and the Osbornes lived in Perrott Street we all went to St Patricks School on the Dudley Road. The bottom of Foundry Road was obviously the poorer end as we did not have a garden just a big yard at the back which contained the toilet blocks and the old wash houses. Our house was a 2 storey building 1 room on the ground floor 1 bedroom on the first floor and the attic on the top floor which I shared with my father and brother sectioned off by a curtain across the room (very chic) it was freezing in the winter with ice forming on the insides of the windows. I remember hanging out the attic window and waving to people on the trains that passed over the bridge and also watching the fights that would occasionally happen on a Friday night when the Railway Pub emptied out.
Does anyone have photos of the bottom end of Foundry Road? I would love to see them. PLEASE
Ann Gallagher

I have scoured the site trying to find out if there was a ‘Sweetmeat’ shop in FoundryRad. On the 1891 census my GGG Grandmother is said of had one and she lived at 57 Foundry Road. Her name was Mary Baker. Also on the 1901 census my G Grandparents Sarah and William Nicholls were greengrocers and lived at 1 Franklin st. I wonder if you have any information or you could post my message, I would love to know more about there lives and see any pictures if there are any.
With many thanks, Sandra Day,

I would like to know if there's anybody on this site that knew the Baker family they lived on 45 and 59 foundry road from 1891 till mid 1940's the family that lived there were Thomas baker and Mary Anne baker their children's were George Henry Baker, Ernest Baker, Doris Baker and William Thomas Baker,George. Henry Baker got married to Mabel Young in the late 30s and moved to Franklin Street and had Maurice Baker, David Baker, and Malcolm Baker in the 40s of 3 back of 26 Franklin Street.
 many thanks George Baker

The name of the caretaker of Foundry Rd School was Norman Whiting. His son Keith went on to be a headmaster.
My grandparents and parents lived at 79 Foundry Rd from about 1916 until 1956.
I'm looking for information or pictures of the 'Engine' pub.
Christine White  EMAIL :

 FOUNDRY ROAD 27/05/07
1948 to 1976 Memories of Lillian Thomas and Sheila Blackwell  .
My name is Lillian Blackwell (nee Philips) I was born in Bennett Street, Lozells in 1928 where I lived with my Mother and Father, Ethel and Frederick and two sisters, Ethel and Winnie and one brother Dennis. At some time in the 1930's we moved to 160 Wilton Street, Lozells.                     My link with Winson Green is through marriage. In 1942 I met and was courted by a Thomas Blackwell, a true Winsonian, born and brought up in Franklin Street. Tom's mother died when he was very young and he and his sister Vera were brought up separate from their father. Tom lived with a Linda Payne who had a house in Wellington Street and his sister Vera was brought up by an Emmie Jones in Franklin Street.  Tom's father remarried to a Rose Harris who also lived in Franklin Street and with his new wife they had another child Janet. Unfortunately we lost touch with Tom's stepsister many years ago.                                                                                                                Tom and I married on the 26th December 1946, Boxing Day, and we moved into our first home, number 6 Foundry Road as soon as we returned from honeymoon. We were lucky enough to buy number 6 and from memory I think we paid £275.00 (yes two hundred & seventy five pounds) for it and our mortgage was less then £2.00 per month. At the time I don't think we realised just how lucky we were, the war was barely over and the economy still in a bit of a mess. The house required much modernisation and we worked hard to make it suitable for the modern living of the late 40's, 50's & 60's. For us life was quite good, Tom had a regular job, and in fact he was never unemployed throughout his working life. By trade he was a sheet metal worker and when we met in 1942 we both worked at Eastgates in Newtown Row. I remained in that job until I gave up work in 1948 to have our first, and only child, Sheila, who was born in October of that year.  Winson Green was a great little community, it was neighbourly, trouble free and above all the people were friendly. Much of our social life revolved around the Railway Inn at the bottom of Foundry Road in the railway triangle. Tom certainly liked his beer and he was almost a daily visitor right up until we left Winson Green. Tom was always cheerful, friendly and well into the community spirit and as a family we went on many trips organised through the Railway Inn, to places such as  Blackpool, Stourport, Evesham and Weston Super Mare. The attached photos, one of the women and another of the men, is just one of the trips from the Railway Inn, unfortunately I can't recall where it was too, but we all look like a very happy bunch.


In the ladies photo are: me the tallest person on the back row left, other ladies in the photo
on the back row are: to my right with glasses Dolly Dyer to my left Linda Scriven,
in front of Linda to her left Mrs Lee and in front of me and Linda is Mary Davis.
Children on the front row looking at the photo: left Ann Scriven, my daughter Sheila and Sandra Davis.


Tom is the one with a pint of beer in his hand! The others I can recall: far left is Tom Bostock,
 3rd person on 2nd row is Sammy Davis, to his left Mr Evans with the hat on, front row left Mr Scriven and lady on far right Mrs Evans.

Photo taken in the back garden of number 6 Foundry Road of Sheila our daughter on the right, and I think Joan Butler 2nd left, not sure about the others                                                                                 Our house was just a few yards from Winson Green Road where there were plenty of local shops, from our house crossing over and going up Winson Green Road first, was the Off Licence owned by a Mrs Silk, next was a grocers shop then a drapers shop and Willies wireless shop, after that there was the Acorn pub and finally the Globe cinema. Back to the corner of Foundry Road and Winson Green Road and there was a barbers shop; must have been number 2 I think, and just round the corner of course was Dolmans garage, handy for petrol and, in the winter paraffin for the heater that was used to stop our water pipes freezing. Going down Foundry Road was Mr Crouch the Newsagents and Albert Newman's the Grocers and just below number 6 was Clayburns another Grocery shop. Right at the bottom of Foundry Road was  Normans the Shoe Repairer.              Number 6 Foundry Road was also very handy for getting around, there was a bus stop almost immediately outside the front door and so on wet and windy days we didn't need to stand in the rain, just waited for the 96 to come into view, then quickly opened the door, a couple of quick steps onto the bus and we'd be off into town.  Bus trips were regular events in the 50's and 60's we would go into town to browse the shop windows and to buy that extra special treat such as cockles, mussels and other goodies only available from the old Bull Ring Market.  The number 11 outer circle bus stop was also close by, we could easily get into Handsworth, going clockwise, or up to the Dudley Road in an anti-clockwise direction there to catch another bus to Cape Hill for those things that couldn't be had from our local shops.  Sheila, our daughter, went to Foundry Road primary school and then on to City Road Secondary Modern, she left school in 1964 and her first job was at British Oxygen in Lodge Road, although she didn't stay there too long. I think she had a string of jobs in a short space of time until she married in 1968 and moved away from home to live in Kidderminster.                      We spent many happy years in Foundry Road until finally in about 1976 Birmingham City Council acquired our house for a proposed road-widening scheme, which never took place. We were offered a council house in the Woodgate Valley, which we took and in 1977, we left Winson Green forever.  Tom retired in 1991 and we then decided to move to Burnham on Sea to be near Sheila, but she soon moved back North and now lives between Bristol and Gloucester, but me, I stayed on and am still here in sunny Burnham. Sadly, Tom passed away in 2002 and is very much missed; he would have liked this web site very much indeed, he was a proud Winsonian.                                         What I have written here is just some background information on my family and me. I have recalled some of the people I knew and now hope to write about some more about Old Winson Green and email to you what I can recall, which as I get older seems to be less and less. Some of the people I can recall right now are: Mrs Cheetam, Beaty Collins, Ivy and Fred Bailey, Lil Sergeant, Tom Jenkins (who was our coal man) and his wife Nancy.
If there is anyone out there who remembers me; Lillian, Tom my husband or our daughter Sheila then please get in touch via Sheila's email address.

I have just read about Foundry Road in your 'Streets' section of the web site, and there was a reference to "the cake lady", a Mrs Wilks. I believe this woman married a Harold Kendrick Mole and her first name was (I believe) Emily, or Emma.                                                                        My mom actually remembers getting off the bus / tram and walking down Foundry Road to the house on the left where cake was sold from the front room. Does anyone know what the house number was? Or where abouts in Foundry Road the house was? Or if there is a photo somewhere please - this would be great!
Dave Hanson

I have just had a very enjoyable trip down memory lane on your website.
As a former resident of Foundry Road, Eva Road and Icknield Port Road
John Bird  Email:

I would like a photo of pawnshop on corner of Foundry Road and Perrot Street when it was a pawnshop owned by my grandfather harry barton from approx 1925 and 1952                          Sheilah Pagett nee Barton

I was born in 1946 from then until around 1963 lived in Foundry No. 37 directly opposite the school, . I attended Foundry Rd School from 1951 until 1957, with Miss Moyle as the headmistress (I went on to Lordswood School),
My sister Pat Brown is 18 months younger than me she went to Foundry Road school too. She may have been in the same year as you.
My mother and father were Dot and Bill Brown,.My Gran and Grandad Parlett lived in Ford Street, Hockley.
I now live in West Hollywood in Los Angeles and am writing a biography which will include my early days in Winson Green.
I was a musician and then latterly in videogames, Tomb Raider being my most well known.
Best Regards
Geoff Brown   E-mail

FOUNDRY ROAD  25/01/05                                                                                                        My name is Pollie Chew (nee Greasley) and I was born at No.84 Foundry Road, Winson Green in 1918. I went to Foundry Road School until I was 11 years old and then on to Handsworth New Road School. I had a nice friend in Eva Road called Alice Clark and another called Leah Pell. I wonder how many of my old school mates are still living. I will be 87 years old in February 2005 and I now live in Shirley.
I was the seventh child of ten and I am the only one still living. My sisters were Amy, Laura (Sally), Violet, Marion and Frances. My brothers were Bill (Sonny), Charlie, Dennis and Jack.                      I remember the man who kept the corn shop under the bridge at the bottom of Foundry Road and the Railway Pub with four cottages alongside it. There were the Allenders who had a shop selling faggots and peas on a Friday night. Mrs. Hanslow lived on the other side of the road and sold cow heels, pigs feet, tripe and, again, faggots and peas. Next door lived the lady who sold us 1/2d worth of cake crumbs and her husband was the only person I knew who owned a car (a Ford, of course)
The cake lady was named Mrs Wilkes and her daughter went to George Dixon Grammar School. I passed the exam but my mother couldn’t afford to let me go; Mrs Wilkes paid for her daughter to go.
Then there was Mr Goode who drove the illuminated tram and also had a shop.
Mrs Bird kept a little shop at the top of Foundry Road, she sold us a little celluloid doll for 1d and a packet of little pieces of cloth for 1/2d to make clothes.
Round the corner of Foundry Road was Sloe Lane which led to the Black Patch Park. We went to a Weslyan Church opposite the park every Sunday afternoon.
Eva Road, Perrott Street, Wellinton Street, Winson Green Road, James Turner Street, Kitchener Street I remember them all. Gypsies lived in Kitchener Street and Perrott Street and the coal barges came into Wellington Street.
Then there was the ‘Soap-Hole’ opposite the Railway Inn – so called, I believe, because soap used to be made down there.
Round the corner from the Railway Inn was a row of houses in Vittoria Street. At the back of the houses they kept pigs. There was a large yard where they built fireplaces and placed a big boiler on the fires. In the boilers they cooked up the food for the pigs. Everything went into the boiler – potato peelings, cabbage leaves, leftover food etc. When it was cooked, they poured it into a trough for the pigs to eat – they loved it! Mom used to send her peelings etc and a man would mark 3d on a card they gave her. Come Christmas, she would have enough saved to buy a piece of pork. As she had such a large family, they used to give her some offal like liver, lights and kelp, which she used to make her own faggots.
I have so many memories of my life as a child in the Twenties and I would welcome any contact with people who remember me.
Pollie Chew (nee Greasley), Shirley, January 2005
see Lodge Road 10/12/07and the Stories page 30/12/08 for the contribution  Pollie and her son Tony has added to this web site


My Mother (now 70 yrs) and myself have been trying to find out more about the early life of my
Great Grandfather, ROBERT GEORGE SHUTT..
He was from Winson Green we think and his WW1 widow, Rosa, lived in Winson Green at the time of his death in 1915.
We wonder if anyone knows any more about him! His parents lived in the vicinity of Bishop Latimer Church. We would like to know if anyone knew Rosa Shutt also

 The War Graves Commission gives the following information:

Initials: R G
Nationality: United Kingdom
Rank: Private
Regiment: Devonshire Regiment
Unit Text: 9th Battalion.
Age: 25
Date of Death: 25/09/1915
Service No: 12428
Additional information: Husband of Rose Rowland (formerly Shutt), of 1, Back of 9, Foundry Rd., Winson Green, Birmingham.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: Col. Grave.

Andy Martin   Email:


FOUNDRY ROAD 30/09/0  

Foundry Road taken from Winson Green Road End with Franklin Street on the left
and a photo taken at the junction of Franklin Street and Foundry Road taken in 1953.
The shop in the second photo 21 Foundry Road.was owend by the Liggitt family up to1918 which is the year Hannah Liggitt died. Apparently, one of the daughters…Florence Grace Liggitt was a “pianist at Picture Palace”  or so it was given as her “Rank or Profession” on her marriage certificate Thanks for the information and photo from John W. Boake Ontario, Canada.

My mother Daisy Cherrington went to Foundry Rd. School. I have three medals that she was awarded for perfect attendancein 1908.  I believe she lived at 81 Foundry Rd.
I have enjoyed reading the accounts of people living in that area. It filled me in with a lot of info that I would have no way of knowing. I have enjoyed it SOOOO much  Thanks again Ted for the best site I have been on.
Lillian Alder   Email:
See Lillians mothers medals  on Foundry Road School page

FOUNDRY ROAD 13/04/03 & 23/04/03
I was born in Winson Green  (Sheila Shell formally Blackwell) in 1948 and lived at number 6 Foundry Road. I went to Foundry Road School I think in1953 and would be interested to see if you have any information or photographs from that time.
Another shop which I would like to mention is Clayburns does anyone remember this shop
I would like to hear from anyone who attended Foundry Road School from 1953-1960 also anyone who went onto City Road School?                              


*1953 CORONATION street party Foundry Road. Sheila's other photographs see Foundry Road School and WellingtonStreet.


FOUNDRY LANE 06/08/2012      (Smethwick really but near enough)
Hello, Great site you have here. my mom and her parents lived over the road from Averys, a few houses down from the Soho Tavern, the houses are long gone. I can remember going to visit them in the early 1960. we used to play in the Black Patch Park. and some times go to the Soho Tavern, not in the pub, but round the back where there was a bowling green. My moms name Gwen Brown, parents names, Sam and Alice Brown  much earlier they lived in Kitchener Street.
Going back to my memories, I can remember the smell of the gas monitors, blue brick pavments, people from all over the world working at Averys, my uncle Sam driving a scamel lorry (the tractor unit only had 3 wheels) he worked for Averys.
We had to catch 3 buses to get to Smethwick, and then a long walk to Foundry Lane/Road, for a little kid it was like going to the other end of the world!   Well I had better stop before you get bored!
Best wishes to all..Clive from Brownhills.

I lived in one of the 4 maisonettes on Foundry Road (should this read LANE?).......Blackley House I believe. All my summers alongside my other 3 sisters were spent at black patch I remember the soho tavern backed onto the park and we used to climb into the grounds of the pub for the empty pop bottles which we would then take back to the outdoor adjoining the pub. We used to go for walks in the brook which ran through the park we used to climb over the fences and walk for what seemed miles we then would climb some stairs and it would bring us out at the allotments near by. I remember both the circus and fun fair coming to the park what a great occasion that was for us. I remember there was a play center in the middle of the park then (I know they moved it some time after to the entrance of the park) and at the side of the playcentre was a water fountain. My sister won a prize at the playcentre it was a painting competition and im sure we went along to some center or even the council house to have it judged.  Karen maccuish(Hughes)

FOUNDRY LANE  18/12/07
 This email is for you Alan Aston from an old friend who has tried to contact you with no success. If anyone reading this knows the contact address for Alan Aston  please let us know.
Your late delivering my paper,? but not when passing a football,you was a marvelous player and was previlaged that you were a member of my team,I have prevoiusly mentioned our playing days at the Patch and all the local lads of Merryhill including your brother and neighbour Jim Stokes and Ted Payne,all good footballers.
I visted the area recently and was disappointed the Park was in a dilapidated condition of neglect. I hope that in 2008 the restoration programe will take place,and bring back a well loved Park.
I hope this E-Mail finds you. Great Momories of our young days. Best Wishes & great Xmas.
Colin Mills. Email:

FOUNDRY LANE 09/08/05 and 11/01/08
This web site is very useful for family history.
My family lived in Foundry Lane.
My father was Roger Harrison, his father Charlie Harrison, grandparents I think William Harrison and Harriet Rodgers was a Gypsy from Black Patch park! Anyone remember them or got any info? Kren Fryer Email:
I would just like to post a message that my dad, ROGER HARRISON, died on Saturday 5th January 2008. Dad used to live in FOUNDRY LANE with his dad CHARLIE, step mother MAUD and brother JOHN. The house has now been demolished and incorporated into the Black Patch Park, but the apple tree still stands! There is a photo of him on your website in the boys bridgade! We showed him this site and he was very interested in it. There may be some people reading this who knew him. They are very welcome to contact me with any stories they may have about him. Thank you for a lovely website. Karen Fryer  EMAIL:

Firstly the website is fantastic.
I am researching my family history and was fascinated by the recollections of your readers.
My dad died over 40 years ago and now at the age of 59 having lived on Merseyside all my life. I never thought I would actually be able to look at where my dad and grandad grew up.
Does anyone remember my Grandfather or Father. Harry Percy Newman (my grandfather) lived at 23 Franklin Street from around 1901 until at least 1950. His wife was Charlotte Ellen and my father was Arthur Leonard (born in 1909). There was a brother (Harry Kenneth) and sisters Eva and Marion. I know it is a long time ago but there may be someone who remembers the family.
I am happy for people to contact me

When I first started work at the I C I Witton in 1952 one of my fellow apprentices was John Humphris, He was a year older than me. He lived in Franklin St, he was a member of The 39th Boys Brigade during that time. He played soccer for them as a goalkeeper even though he had a club foot caused by having polio when he was young. Hie nickname was keeper at work {what else could it be] I was his best man at his wedding but lost touch when I moved with my wife and kids in 1969 to Adelaide, South Australia. Does anyone remember him. Moss in Aus Maurice Sellars

I was wondering if you could help me I used to live in Foundry Road in the 60's. I lived at number 37. I think it was on Franklin Street, there was a converted shop that was owned by a Mike Jones he used the front as an antique shop and the back was used for light engineering ??. I can only describe him as stocky build with dark hair and a beard. Do you know anyone that might remember him or where he may have moved to, we left Winson Green in 1986 I remember that the number 96 bus stopped outside his shop before it terminated at the bottom of Foundry Road and I think it is Franklin Street that I am trying to describe. can you help, thank you in anticipation.
Regards. Linda McCall

I would like to know if there's anybody on this site that knew the Baker family they lived on 45 and 59 foundry road from 1891 till mid 1940s the family that lived there were thomas baker and mary anne baker their childrens were george henry baker, ernest baker, doris baker and william thomas baker,george. Henry baker got married to mabel young in the late 30s and moved to franklin street and had maurice baker, david baker, and malcolm baker in the 40s of 3 back of 26 franklin street.
 many thanks George Baker

I used to visit an aunt and uncle.(really mom & dads best friends) in Franklin St the first house. Connie and Ben Heywood, they had 2 daughters Josie and Eileen. I loved visiting them this was in the 60's I remember there was a pet shop opposite their house, and there were always 2 big collie dogs outside. My uncle Ben had 2 Bringle bull terriers who he always took with him to the pub in lLodge Rd
From Val   Email:

My great aunt was an All Saints girl she remembers that her grandparents ran the"Leopard" public house, I believe in Goode Street near Scribbans bakery. Goode Street has gone now does any one remember Leonard and Jane Phillips the licenses around 1935 of the Leopard these were my great great grandparents.
Su Smith   Email: None supplied


I wonder you or any of the visitors to your 'Winson Green web-site have any information about 'Feathers Electical Shop' which was once at no.453 Dudley Road (between the junction with Dugdale Street and the junction wit Halberton Street).
Until about 1954, I lived with my parents and my grandmother Violet 'Queenie' Bartlett at number 11 Dugdale Street. Our garden ran along the back of the shops on Dudley Road, the last one being Feather's shop. I used to play with the little girl who lived there (Hazel). We lost touch after we moved and I now wonder what became of the Family and the business. I believe the shop is still there, but no.11 Dugdale Street is not. I think it was the only terraced house still inhabited on that side at the time, tho' I do remember the 'court' style houses on the other side of the street.
I have attached a photograph of our garden showing the ends of the Dudley Road shop gardens on the left, and the side-wall of the Grove Cinema and the houses in Halburton Street at the end. It was taken in the very late 1940's or very early 1950's. Many Thanks, ROGER SUTTON

I remember Winson Green fondly, we lived in Halberton Street, a few doors from the dressmaker Mrs Bishop, and our back garden went onto the back of the Grove Cinema. I went to Summerfield Rd School opp the Park and we left when I was 8, as the house was condemed when we moved in, to go to Bromford Bridge. I hated it, but ended up living happily there, even when I got married, for 37 years. I now live in Castle Brom my Mom (Hilda Astle Nee Faulkner) and Dad are still in Bromford. Happy days.
June Allen  Email : ?

I have stumbled across this web site through doing my family tree I grew up in Handsworth New Road during the 70's oposit the secondary school I remember the prison and All Saints hospital I to went to Foundary Rd school between 1975 and 1980 at the end of Handsworth New Rd stood a church but i dont remember what is was called (Bishop Latimer) I also used to go to Lodge Rd baths (where were they) with the school, this web site has bought back some good memorys thank you for putting it together.
 Cecilia Morrall  Email:


I was born and grew up in Harding Street with my two brothers and three sisters and we had many
happy hours there. Gillian Kavanagh nee Beecham Email:

l was born in March 1944 at Dudley Rd hospital and lived in Harmer St untill 1969 when mom, dad and myself moved to Hall Green. l attended All Saints school 1949-1955 and then Handsworth New Rd 1955-1959.

On the corner of Harmer St/Lodge Rd were two shops, the one in your photo was an electrical shop run by a Mr.& Mrs. Cox. On the other corner was a general store run by Mr. & Mrs. Day and later by Mr. & Mrs. Glew.
The residents who lived on the even side of Harmer St were,
Mrs. Shepherd , Oakley, Mr.& Mrs. Baker ( Mrs. Baker moved to Canada and died in a road accident not long after).
 Waldren,  Wilson,  Evans. (Mr. Evans worked for Scribbans).
 Tovey ( Had a son (Barry my mate) and his sister Jaqueline. We went to see the Albion every home match with his dad.)
Mr. & Mrs. Boden. son Paul a mate and sister Dorothy.
Mr. Boden (Joe) think he was a bread delivery man then ran a butchers shop on Winson Green Rd.
Mr. & Mrs. Long. daughter Barbara.
Pinfield ( a bus driver at Hockley bus garage as was Mr. Wilson l beleive.)
Miss. Ada Mander.
Mr. & Mrs. Bayliss and me.
Bill & Mabel Mander son Alan & daughter Kath. (Bill was a strong Labour man and Mr. Denis Howell used to visit a lot. He was a football league referee at the time.)
Mr. & Mrs. Jones at the end and son Cyril, keen on motor bikes.
Over to the odd No's side of street.
Mr. & Mrs. Wareham. children Pauline & Philip l think.
Dolly Britton, can't remember her husbands name but he always moaned at us and calling the police for playing football. Also where we played by my house we used the lampost as a goal post & the local milk delivery mans horse always seemed to relieve itself in our goal area, bless him.
Mr. & Mrs. Shale. son John & a daughter. Dolly Brittons mom. Mr. & Mrs.Boswell, McMillan, Wareham senior. Think he worked on the railway. Mr. & Mrs. Powell. son Michael. Lady who had a Pug dog, can't remember her name. Last family next to open entry/gully was the Greaves family.
On to Lodge Rd from electrical shop up to British Oxygen.
Mr. & Mrs. Smith. 4 children, Larry, Kathy, Barbara & Robert my mate.
Mrs. Collett & son David a mate.
Mr. & Mrs. Witton. daughter Cynthia & son David a mate.
Can't remember names of other families.
Going down Lodge Rd from general stores shop to Paxton Rd.
Mr. & Mrs. Weaver. 2 sons Les who died in his twenties & Danny my best mate.
Mr. & Mrs. Farrington & grandson Wayne who joiner the Navy & served on the Ark Royal l believe.
Mr. & Mrs. Pendleton & son. Dudsons.  Samsons.  Mellor son Derek.
Well thats about it regards friends and neighbours.
 Seems like yesterday all this looking back.
My best mate was Peter Earl who lived off Crabtree Rd.
We played for the junior football team. l last saw Pete in 1970/71 just before l got married. l went for a pint at the White Swan? l think in York St off Harborne High St. and Pete was the landlord. Other mates were Barry Mousedale, Dougie Ryder, Roger Worth think he joined the police force.
From Hingeston St were Eddy Jones, Norman Marshall a Villa fan & Johnny Allen & his mom Floss who both worked at Turner & Simpsons in Legge Lane with me.
Writing this has brought back so many memories, lt seemed like I was writing an autobiography.
Kind regards Roger Bayliss E-mail

Harmer street.You have an item from Roger Bayliss that mentions Mr. and Mrs. Shale in Harmer Street, they were my uncle and aunt.Also Mr. and Mrs.Smith on Lodge Road. Their son Robert, who Mr. Bayliss said was his mate, died quite a few years ago. His dad, my Uncle Sid, used to work at the Devonshire Arms.
Regards. Bob Shale  Email:


HEATH STREET 16/12/2013

I was born in 1962 and lived in 7-9 Heath Street (the newsagents) untill about 1965 we had the shop plus behind, and above of course my bedroom was at the top and I had bars on my window. . I remember being sat on the counter when an escapee from the prison came in (although it may have been the hospital, in retrospect) I was a very small child at the time but I do have memories of playing in the back yard with the neighbour's children. I used to sit on the counter when my parents were working, we had an old one armed bandit in the shop. My Dad used to shoot the rats on the canal at the back. I recently went to the Birmingham back to backs which are preserved and it really brought back memories ,

I would love to hear from anyone who remembers the shop
Julie Parker

HEATH STREET 02/06/2012

Birmingham Tramcar: Late 1930s.
Tram at Soho Junction.
Route Soho to Hockley..via Lodge Rd.

At first it was thought this photo may have been taken near the terminus in Wellington Street
Photo with thanks to Derek Weston

The photo could not be of Wellington Street since trams never ran there.The 32 route came from Lodge Road and down Foundry Road and terminated outside The Railway Inn in Victoria Street then returned the same way. I think the clue is in the caption of 'Soho Junction' since the 31 tram ran to Soho, near the Smethwick border, via Dudley Road & Heath Street. The houses look very much like those in Heath Street
which I walked past to visit my gran who lived there in the 1950's.The tram has PW on the front which means 'Permanent Way' and was used for maintenance of the tramlines and was never used on public services.  James Holloway

HEATH STREET 13/07/2011
St Cuthberts Youth and Community Centre
Great memories of Winson Green.Thank you.                                                                                                   Marion and I, Mike Symmons, lived in the flat with our family at St Cuthberts Youth and Community Centre between Heath St and Cuthbert Rd. At times we had up to 500 participating at the centre a week between 1980 to 89. All activity was developed with the participation of young people and their families and trained volunteers mainly locally but some from further afield. One helper a curate, Keith is now Bishop of Chester. Another Maraid was a nun from Southern Ireland and a further was a diocesan worker from Africa.We joined in the Winson Green carnivals; Birmingham youth leagues- doing well at soccer, pool, table tennis, angling, raft building and racing, and many more with girl and boy teams; held special holiday activities, camps and residentials that included ski instruction, climbing, scrambling and cycling. There was also a full weekly programme of varied activities including canoeing, street art and dance, drama supporting consideration of important issues(can anyone remember when a member of Dexys Midnight Runners joined us to watch a play?), and producing and distributing a free community newspaper, The Green, by the young people. Together we gave support to each anothers development and wellbeing aiming to also assist community development. We encouraged one lad to attend Bobby Charltons Summer Soccer School.We have fond memories of many from this time and are grateful for all we shared. Christ Church, Summerfield gave us this opportunity to build our community with a focus on young people and children. The building was modernised with the help of communiy service teams and fund raising. With changes in the area and the emergence of Summerfield Centre our community closed. If anyone is interested I still have many photographs, newspaper copies, video recordings from this time including a professionally produced one for Frontier Youth Trust, a national trust, made to illustrate the impetus it gives to support youth and community projects like ours.
 We would welcome hearing from anyone who also appreciated our time together.
 Thanks   Mike Symmons

HEATH STREET 22/10/2010
I am enquiring if there would be any possibility of obtaining a photo of the Coronation celebrations 1953 that took place in the Dudley Road end of Heath Street - I am interested as I can remember my father wearing 'whites' with a whistle around his neck organising the childrens races? I am asking for the impossible I know but if you do not ask you do not receive. Thank you  Val Liddington

HEATH STREET  Guest Keen and Nettlefolds (GKN) 14/12/08

Henry Oliver Jones  my Granddad in the GKN  Fire Dept

My childhood was spent in Winson Green and I have great memories of living there, we moved into 3/248 Heath Street when I was four years old (1961).One of my first memories is holding my dads hand as we walked up the yard to view the house. I think it was the first proper home my parents had. My mom, dad and three sisters and two brothers lived in a two up, two down. We had to share a toilet which was at the top of the yard, if I wasn't allowed out to play I would say I needed the toilet then on the way back nip under the hedge and off to play, I knew I would be in big trouble when I got home but it didn't stop me! We didn't have a bath so it was the tin bath every Sunday night! Me first being the eldest.
I went to Summerfield junior and infant school, I think the head teachers name was Mr Cocking.
Friends I remember who lived in our street were Tina Weaver, Lorraine McGregor, Jane low and Linda Beard other friends were Jayne Bradbury, Ann Jones , Jennifer Clueit ( I think she lived in Aberdeen Street ) and Maria Cole. I remember going to Summerfield Park, usually with several sisters and brothers in tow, mom would pack some jam sandwiches and a bottle of tizer and off I would go- I was doing this from about eight years old! and we never come to any harm. I remember the sand park, I also remember a park which we called the Chinese park ? I don't know why.. it was further on from the sand park , perhaps in the middle of the flats that were built? We went to the Grove cinema on Dudley Road on Saturday mornings, we always had a bag of chips to share after and then we would look round Woolworths.
I remember down the bottom of our yard was a shop which we called Ruby's, next to that was a shop that sold clothes and small items - wool toys ect- also a grocers shop called Bishops? My dad used to get me to get things on tick till Friday, they were always so nice to me in the shops. There was also a bookies on the corner ( my dad spent a lot of time in there bless him) The wash baths were only a few houses down from us and we went there a few times.
I have so many happy memories, although we moved to Yardley wood when I was twelve, most of my childhood was spent in Winson Green and although from a big family my mom and dad did their best for us. Sadly my dad has passed away but I'll never forget the places he took me, the Botanical Gardens on Sunday mornings or the Reservoir, up the Dudley Road, Bearwood, Lodge Road and into town on the bus or sometimes we would walk there.
I love the site and was so pleased to see that other people have fond memories of the people and places.
Patricia Keegan nee Astley

HEATH STREET   03/04/08     BEST BARBER for miles?
How come no one as mentioned one of the best barbers for miles around. The man in question was Edgar Mason who had a shop in Heath Street near the junction with Winson Green Road opposite the Shakespeare public house. I don't know when he first opened his shop but it was one of the last building left on that part of Heath Street, I should think it was there well into the seventies when it closed. It was the only Barber my father would go to he would even come back back to Winson Green just for a haircut after leaving the area. Of course he took me there for my hair cut from a early age and Edgar used to put a board across the arms of the seat for the kids to sit on. In those days men and boys for that matter seemed to have there hair cut more often than these days, and it was not unusual to wait a couple of hours for your turn especially Saturdays or early Friday evenings. Edgar's wife would keep him supplied with cups of tea and plates of sandwich's and I wondered how he kept the hair he was cutting out of his food and drink because there was no stopping just eat on the job. There was always plenty of magazines and comics to read while you waited. Sometimes my mother would take me in the week to avoid the wait but often still had to wait a while. When I was old enough to go on my own I found the best time miss the rush was dinner time. In later years he moved his shop into the back and opened a ladies hairdressing salon upstairs and I believe it was run by his daughter. By this time he had an assistant working for him but my dad would only let Edgar cut his hair. Edgar must have been a good barber because his shop was always crowded and often men would walk in, see the queue and walk out because they knew it was going to be a long wait. Or could it be you could not buy the clippers like you can these days and get the wife to give a haircut.
Regards John Gillon
Mike Green

My moms family name is Bullock she is the 3rd of 4 daughters, her parents name was Jack and Ginny, my moms name Constance, and her sisters names was Doreen, Rene, Margaret, they lived in Rose Terrace Heath Street. Approx where Jawel Paints is now, they all lived in 6 back of 327 and then 2 back 327. She tells me about the scrapyard called Parkers, and the sweetshop, Suches which was the newsagent and Davis"s which was the grocers come sweetshop, this was owned by Tom and Lily they had a young son also called Tommy, my mom once told ne she was scared in the entry by young Tommy who held a torch to his face in the dark, tragically he died in a road accident sometime later, she also remember Shiela and Liilian price who lived in the same terrace.
Moms parents drank in the Heath Street Tavern and were regulars, along with the Albion Pub to, her mom also cleaned at the Bellefield. Jack and Ginny moved to Avery Road after the children left home. unfortunately Jack died of cancer some years ago and Ginny died a few years after that, they did everything together and couldn't bear to be apart. I hope this can jog the memory of the people who surf your site, i'm very glad its there.
 If anyone wishes to contact me, you can by email or phone. MARK.
 Email: or Phone on 07813834386


Having seen this site for some time now I would like to add a few photo's taken in 1953 for the Coronation. Both were taken inside the Mission Hall, Heath Street opposite Tudor Street and next to the Albion Pub.

In the group photo the Evans clan can be seen. In the bottom left hand corner is my Grandmother (dark coat, glasses and hat on), Clara Louisa Evans (nee Mantle), she had returned on a trip with my Grandfather (Albert Leonard Evans) from New Zealand for the Coronation. Above her head is another lady who I do not know but the lady beside her with the hat on and a curl on her forehead is my mother, Elsie May Evans (nee Lowe). My mother was born in Heath Street (a twin, her twin brother being Albert Leonard Lowe) in 1916 at 2/150. We were at the time of this photo being taken living at 1/150 Heath Street. The three boys at the left of the table are me, Albert Leonard Evans and standing on his chair is my younger brother, Frank and next to him is my older brother, Malcolm. The second photo shows us better in a group. My older brother, Malcolm sitting in the front, first from the left. Me third in from the left sitting and Frank fourth in from the left also sitting, we all have the same dicky bows on. The others in the two photo's I do not have any names for but someone else may know people from these photo's.
Albert Evans

 I would like to know if anybody new my father John Eric Wilkins born 1935 and lived at 259 Heath St  his mother was Elsie May Wilkins then married William Aspinall I would appreciate any information if you would like to ring it 01543378033 thanks Julie Dewett nee Wilkins  Email:

I was born at 132 Heath Street in 1952 and lived there with my Mother Jean and my  Grandparents Fred and Flora Harman.  We were about two hundred yards away from St.
Culthbert's Church and just a couple of doors from "Turley's" Sweet Shop. There was
another sweet shop just alittle further down the street run by Mrs Johnson. My best
friends in those early years growing up were Teresa and Michael Kane (who emigrated
to Oregon USA) and Frank and Marion Evans who moved to New Zealand.
  Fish and Chips were bought once a week from Sherwood's Fish Shop in Tudor Street
and newspapers were purchased from "Alf's" newsagents on Winson Green Road
opposite Summerfield School.  Regular visits were made to The Grove Cinema and
occasionally The Crown and even went a couple of times to The Lyric off Summer
  Other shops on (upper) Winson Green road I can recall was a second hand furniture
shop called (I think) The Green Swop Shop, a toy shop were I paid in weekly for my
firework collection every November, a fish bar near Alf's newsagent, and near the
top of the road a pet food shop and a jewellery and clock shop. Play times were
spend mostly in Summerfield Park or by the Feeder next door to the canal that ran
down the other side of Heath Street.
James Harman

A very interesting and informative site, which has brought back memories of my childhood, and has given me more information for my family history research, Thankyou.
My mother (Winnie Whitehouse, nee BURFORD)was born at 234 Heath Street. My Grandmother Kate BURFORD lived there from at least 1921 until just before her death (in Dudley Road Hospital) Dec 1967. I remember visiting there on numerous occasions. 234 was next to the bathhouse mentioned on your website, did the family move into my grandmother's house on the front, or the house at the back? My Grandfather - George Burford - died in 1949, he worked at Nettlefolds as a galvaniser. My parents were married at St. Cuthberts Church in June 1948, my mom was also baptised there in 1924. Mom worked at Scibbens - the cake factory - during the war. My aunt (mom's sister) also lived in Heath Street back of 236 or 232, her name is Edna Taylor. She moved to Icknield Port Road during the 60s.
Jenny Allen

HEATH STREET  24/08/06
 I found this website whilst doing some research on my family tree I am trying to trace my father's brother, JOHN CHRISTOPHER THOMPSON. In 1974 he may have lived at 90 Heath Street. Would anybody be able to assist me?? any assistance would be greatly appreciated.edel thompson Email:

An enquiry re the MORTON family
who once lived in HEATH STREET if you know of them please contact John Houghton
E-mail Address:
MORTON, A. C., Private, 2nd Hampshire Regiment. He joined in January 1917, and in the following May proceeded to the Western Front, where he saw severe fighting in various sectors. After taking part in engagements at Arras, Bapaume and Albert and many other places, he was killed in action at the Battle of Cambrai on December 3rd, 1917. He was entitled to the General Service and Victory Medals.
16 Back of 387, Heath Street, Winson Green, Birmingham.


Me, my four sisters and mum moved to Health Street in 1970. When we got their it was the last of the war torn slum housing in Winson Green. We lived right next door to the Bath house and would see people at weekends returning after having a bath. The back of our house had a court yard which had been destroyed during the war, on the otherside of our house was a bomb peak. We spent about 5 years living in Heath Street. The conditions were really bag (no inside bathroom or toliet,desperatly in need of repair) we were an immigrant family from Jamica. It was a happy time with a sence of community. Does anyone know of any more immigrant families that were there at this time? or have any pictures of Heath Street before they tore it down in 1975/6? I also remember the sweet shop on Heath street and I think a pub called the Shakespearer - where my father drank on occasion.
Monica Herber

I came across this site looking for info on my great aunt Polly Beaman who ran a shop in Heath Street. She raise my grandmother Laura Snooks/Beaman as her own, and was a well known character in Winson Green.
Andrew Brown

My mom was from Winson Green, she lived in Heath St with her 3 sisters and their parents Jack and Ginny Bullock.
My father worked at the old "Grove cinema" on Dudley Road as a projectionist. the whole area has a deep meaning for us all and was wondering if anyone has any info on the Grove cinema. I would be very grateful.
Mark Crum.
On pages  35/36 of the new book "Birmingham Cinemas" ISBN0752430807 published 2003  images of this picture house and a few historical facts are shown.

Brings back memories of the years we lived in Chesterton Ave which if I remember was just of Heath Street.
I attended Handsworth New Road school leaving in 1967.
Would love to here from any old friends.   Chris Terry

I use to live in Heath St and Heath Green Rd. As a young boy I went to Summerfield School and funny thing is I worked on it last year 2002  repairing brick work. As I got older we moved down the road ,and then I went to Nelson. Richard Cash

My family used to live at 8 Heath Street (1st house next to the Lee Bridge pub), Winson Green. The entrance was at the rear of a Tailoring repair shop called "The Clothed Clinic" which was run by an elderly Jewish man. I would love to see a picture if anyone has one or knows where I can get one from. When I lived in Heath Street I attended St Patricks school. Later we moved to 31 Chiswell Road.
 Noel Stone

I have been on your website to try and find any photographs of Heath Street, Winson Green during the 1960's - 70's. My mother and her family used to live on No.111 Heath Street - their surname was McKeown.
My grandfather also used to drink in the Shakespeare Pub on the corner of Heath Street.
If anyone could send me or knows of any photographs available that would be fantastic.
Thank you  Laura Mulholland


That's a lovely site you've put together. I have recently been (trying) doing some family research.
Is there any chance that someone will remember my Grandad? George Scott he lived at the bottom of Heath Green Road, off the Dudley Road. He died sometime in the late 60's, and my uncle Bob stayed at the house after he went. Any info. or stories of him or his family would be apreciated.
My Mom was his daughter Marjory, she marrid my Dad during the War.
I am now living in Swansea, and can be reached on 01792 578309, or E-Mail
Thank you for the memories your site has brought back.
Kit Warwick


CROMWELL HALL   Was opened in 1894 and remained active for about 100 years. At its peak, up to 400 children attended Sunday School each week.

I am sending you a photograph of the coronation party held for the folks of Heath Green Road in Cromwell Hall. I think the same photograph is on Cromwell Hall's site but I can assure you this copy is mine. I am the little lad with the beard drawn on my face with eyebrow pencil the reason being that I had just won firsr prize in the fancy dress competition dressed as a chef. the prize was a clockwork train set. I had changed from the chefs outfit but left the makeup on. It does not seem fifty-six years time flies when you are getting older don't you agree. If anyone recognises themself could they e-mail me.
John Gillon

Just found this old photograph of two little girls Margaret Probert and Alma Jones, with my young brother John, in the terrace in Heath Green Road, Winson Green, 1938. I wonder whether these girls are still with us.                                                                                                                                    During the war as an alternative to Anderson shelters, the authorities strengthened people's shelters, under the houses, with corrugated ceilings and steel tubular supports. This photograph shows me sitting on the blast covering over the cellar exterior entrance (coal chute), at my home in
4/16 Heath Green Road, Winson Green in 1939. Mike Green         27/12/07

I would love to send photo's of the old days, but sadly all such pics disappeared when my mother re-married and my grandmother's collection went elsewhere in the family. However if you ever get enquiries regarding the inhabitants of Wood Green Road during the 1940's please pass them on. Also any information regarding Cromwell Hall. In fact anything. I read the site every day.
Many thanks Diane Sprague

HEATH GREEN ROAD 05/09/07 and 29/09/07
I was born in 1946 and I was bought up in Heath Green Rd. and lived there until I married in 1970. My father had lived in Heath Green Road since he was about two years old but he had spent many years away in the Royal Navy ( I believe his first voyage he was away for over two years on what they called the China station). He met the woman that became my mother when he was on leave during the war, they married and rented a house opposite my dads parents in the first terrace on the left going down Heath Green Rd. My dad was named Walter but I think most of the folks knew him as POP.

I started City Road Infant school (1951-1953) when I was five years old and can remember that day as if it was yesterday, I started part way through the term because I had been in hospital, my sister Lyn who also attended that school said she would see me at playtime but her class was delayed having to see the nit nurse so no Lyn, My reaction I lost it and no one could calm me down and I fought the teacher Miss Wellington tooth and nail.
Seven years old off to Summerfield Juniors (1953-1957). My first teacher Miss Prince a lovely middle aged lady who spoiled us and gave us a sweet every Friday. Then it was a Mrs Smethhurst in the second year , third year a Mr Downing or Dowling who I liked very much, then the final year a Mrs Aldridge. Other teachers I remember were Mr Moss who taught the top class and every pupil in the school was terrified of him a Mr Jones,Mr Parry and a Mr Wilson and the headmaster Mr Reece.
In 1957 aged eleven I went to the brand new school Portland Road Edgbaston, not in your area Ted but quite a few kids from Winson Green, Ladywood and Handsworth went there and I finally left in 1961.
Sunday school was Cromwell Hall in Heath Green Rd the place were I got my head stuck, yes I was about four year old and was playing in the terrace with my sister and her friends and I wandered off down the road to the chapel (Cromwell Hall). there was a bunch of older lads playing in the area at the front having squeezed through a gap were one of the iron railings was missing I decided to squeeze through as well but tried to get through, were the railing was in tact, my head was stuck. The next thing I knew my mom was standing shouting someone get the fire brigade, what did I do just turned my head and walked out.
Cromwell Hall no choice every Sunday afternoon off we had to go with a penny for the collection, I think it was to give our parents a rest. Then once a year anniversary best clothes and follow the band around the local streets. Christmas party take your own cup dish and spoon and the highlight was a orange and apple on the way out. The Sunday school outing a day trip to the country or seaside always on Gliderways coaches. The biggest event at Cromwell Hall was in 1953 the coronation but it rained all day, I did win first prize in the fancy dress I was a chef. but what I remember most about the coronation was the street decorations not only our street but every street.
Each Sunday evening for many years the Salvation Army Band used to come and play
in the middle of the road.The man that played the bass drum would rest it on a wooden stand, well just before they stopped to pray I would run up our entry into the kitchen grab my moms boiler stick,by the time I got back the Sally Ann would be quiet in prayer so I would sneak up behide the man with the drum and hit it as hard as I could and be off. I was about six years old at the time it,'s funny how those little things stay in your mind.
We only had one shop in Heath Green Rd. and that was the off licence or better known as the outdoor on the corner at the bottom but in Cuthbert Road opposite the bottom of Heath Green Rd. there was a cobblers shop run by a old fellow named Fred and he used to take bets for a bookmaker it was before betting shops was legal.
At the top on the right going down there was Brunners the bakery and they made nice cakes and had a shop on the corner for a while. I remember the manageress used to give us kids a bag of cakes every so often.
The days I am talking about we could play in the road for hours and see very few cars come down, in fact if we saw a car parked we wondered who had there rich relatives visiting them. We did have the milkman and the breadman but they had horse and carts then. Life was hard but fun in those days no bathroom dad had to bring the tin bath up from the cellar once a week Outside toilet very cold in winter you did not hang about. No hot water boil a kettle and strip in the kitchen for a wash Washing days my mom would start before I went to school and be just finishing when I came home at night. Was they the good old days? I ask myself.
I have plenty more stories I could tell you but some tales I don't know if I dare I could get myself and others in a spot of trouble we were little B---ers in them days.
I would like to hear from anyone who knew me please Email me.
Keep up the good work Ted   John B Gillon


I was very interested to discover your web site as I was born in 1930 at 4/16 Heath Green Road, Winson Green. I attended Dudley Road Infants and Junior schools, a period which was interrupted by the outbreak of WW2, when I was sent for a fairly brief period to Cromwell Hall, which served as a temporary school!  I followed this with attendance at Barford Road School and finally, Handsworth Technical School.
I left Heath Green Road to move to a nearby address at 336 Dudley Road in 1946 and was called up into the R.A.F. in 1948.
I remember taking part in a Fancy Dress competition at Cromwell Hall in 1937? which was part of the Coronation celebrations.
I also remember my home being narrowly missed by a flying bomb, during an air raid in the early part of the war, the same bomb hitting and exploding on a neighbour's house.
Friends in the neighbourhood included Frank Williams, Arthur Whitehead, Arthur and Teddy Darby, Margaret Probert, Jean Phillips, John Crathorne, John Phillips etc.
I'm attaching an old photo taken during one of my weekend passes, in nearby park at Warley.
Hope that someone remembers me.
Mike Green

 I was born in Dudley Rd. Hospital in 1944, and lived the first couple of years at my Grandads house in Heath Green Rd. I can remeber getting off a tram in Brum City centre when I was about 4 years old. But what I am trying to do is find out about my Grandad and Grandma, Geaorge Scott who lived in Heath Green Rd. I know he was a Prison Visitor and a life-long Scouter.
Can anyone help? Chris Warwick

I was told of your Winson Green to Brooklands site and was intrigued to take a look.
I am one of 5 children - 3 of which were born at 161 James Turner Street in 1948, 1952 and 1955. We were the Folks family Gladys and Ted with eldest daughter June, son David and then Barbara, (myself) Carol and Jacqueline. We went to Foundry Road School. We were always in Currys corner shop and their son was one of the children we played street games with - Hopscotch, Hide and Seek, Thunder and Lightening. We attended Sunday school at Bishop Latimer Church, my eldest sister was a Sunday school teacher for a while. We moved out of James Turner Street in 1960 and moved to Ninevah Road where my mom ran the corner shop - corner of Ninevah and Holliday Road.
My eldest sister June, myself and my younger sister Jacqueline were all married at Bishop Latimer Church. When we moved from the corner shop in Ninevah Road we moved back to my mom's family home in Willes Road, where my mom continued to live until she died in 2002.
We all found watching the recent TV programme 'Benefit Street' devasting as the memories we have of living there were of a happy childhood and a very different culture.
Carol Hunter

Ted just to say how horrified I was to see James Turner Street , in its present state as depicted in channel 4s programme last night 06/01/2014. I was brought up in that street and considering how it was 45 yrs ago, a genuine community.
It just dismayed me to see what sort of vermin have colonised the area and I am ashamed to tell any one I spent my childhood there.
Anyway, keep up the great website I view it avidly . John Cahill

I found your website and was most interested in the archive and photo's collected. I am presently trying to trace my family tree but have hit a brick wall with my grandmother & aunt
My grandmother Agnes Keziah Rowe lived at 101 James Turner Road which I found on the electoral roll register in 1930 also my aunt Kathleen M Rowe was born in 1934 possibly in the same house.
Agnes later met my grandfather Harry Dawson and married in 1939 and moved to Peel St.The time between 1930 & 1939 is a mystery as well as my aunts fathers name any info or anyone around this area would be amazing.
In addition to this I have some photo's from around 1945-1950 of my family when living at Peel St , I will try to forward them to you.
hope they may trigger a memory to someone
Best Regards   Simon Dawson

Congratulations on a brilliant site, I've been following it for the past few years. I am John Cahill and I lived at 148 James Turner Street, opposite 'Curry's' corner shop on the corner of Beeton Road and James Turner Street between 1966 and 1974. I often drive over there to have a walk down memory lane. I went to Foundry Road School and then Handsworth New Road School (the main school and the annex). Can anybody remember Mr (Tom) Parry, the headmaster of the annex who used to put the fear of God in us and Mr (Bottle tops) Jones because he used to sound like he had a lot of bottle tops in his pocket for some reason. I saw your plaque in black patch park (pity the original got vandalised). It seems a shame, walking around the area, that it seems to have become run down, considering all the happy memories I had growing up there. Anyway, thanks for the site, I read it with interest. Keep up the good work.(The park will improve Ted)
John Cahill

My name is Des Rogers born in James Turner St 1946 and went to Foundry Road and HNR. I have just found the site and have spent hours looking at it and are only part way into it.
I am sorting some old photos from school and 39th BB which I will send on
Thanks for the memories, Des

I'm desperate to find any pictures of James Turner Street particularly the end opposite the school which is now a play area. There was a group Coronation photo of all the people at that end of the street and I wonder if anyone out there has one? Alex Stanton

 I have just come across your site whilst looking for something else, and couldnt believe my eyes when I saw James Turner Street. My grandfather Edwin Rogers lived there! I think it was at no 12 not too sure... my aunt and uncle lived nextdoor to him, Elsie and George Hunt. I used to visit them when I was about 11 and was Bridesmaid to their eldest daughter Anne. Those were the days when you didnt lock your door in the day unless the siren from the prison went off. Thanks for the memory Judy Email:

 I am trying to trace my grandmother and ancestors of my grandfather on both sides of my family my father was born in Winson Green/Handsworth and was Edward Dunkley born 1931 my mother was born 1932 and was Joan Henderson. They grew up around the area mum was born in Buck Street and lived in
James Turner Street.
I am also trying to get some history on Black Patch Park as I think this may have something to do with my grandmother.  Sharon Quantrill

Come on the folks from James Turner Street !! not even a mention ? We lived there at 119 in 1946/47, our house was a small grocers shop. We had the Pattersons living opposite, and 2 house next door both had a Mrs Williams living in them. I was only 5/6 at the time but I remember it so well, cigarettes kept under the counter for regulars, sacks of liquarice root, the fish and chip shop around the corner where you could get free "scratchings" and Black Patch Park ! Anyone else ? Wonderful site, by the way and the photo's are fabulous,
I now live in France, and don't get back much to see if things have changed.
Keep up the good work, Nita Clayton, (nee Wootton) Email:


Nita age 6                      The Wooton family

Two photo's, one of my family and me, and one of myself aged 6 all dressed up for the church procession, in a dress my mom made from parachute "silk". Didn't I think it was great !!
The boy's brigade band who featured in the parade also used to practice down the street sometimes on a Sunday.
I remember an old man living up the road who used to dry banana skins over his black lead firegrate to use instead of tobacco. Does anyone remember the 'big snow' of 47/48 ?
I have just heard from Jean Adams who used to live opposite, it was wonderful to hear from her, and she remembered me and my two brothers.
I will be back,
Nita Clayton (Wootton)  Email:



Photo was take around 1912, in the back yard of 103 James Turner Street,
Winson Green. The children in the photo are my Uncles and Aunt. They are from left to
right. Harry Wood, born 1910; Doris Cannon nee Wood, born 1912 and Samuel Wood,
born 1909. Doris is still alive and well, and living in Halesowen. She will be 94 on
the 26th April 2006.            Thanks to Martin Hanchett for the photo



Charlie Wood and Ada Bamford's Wedding 1915
95, James Turner Street, Winson Green, Birmingham                                                                                                      Top row from left to right
William Sidney Bamford; Frank Broadway?; Billy Wood; Yettie (Bamford) Scothern;
Sam Wood; Eliza (Bamford) Wood; Albert Wood; Florie (Bamford) Pell;
Mary Ann (Wood) Broadway?; Auntie Leah; Ernie Radford; Lizzie (Russon) Wood;
Anne (Maddox) Bamford; Billy Bamford.

Middle row from left to right
Robert Bamford; Harold Wilson; Sarah Ann (Wood) Bamford; Chalie Wood (Groom);
Ada Bamford (Bridegroom); Violet (Bamford) Radford; Auntie Nelly Harrison.

Bottom row from left to right
Florie Pell; Ethel Scothern; Doris (Wood) Cannon; Anne Bamford

Thanks to Martin Hanchett for the photo




Three photographs sent to us by Stanley Jones                                                                                           Mrs Worths grandsons Birthday party Abberley Street---Wedding group Summerfield school and 3 unknown boys in Summerfield Park

Very enjoyable site I was born in James Turner Street in 1946
Email: Stanley Jones


My name is Glenyss Morris nee Morgan I lived in Kitchener Street at 32 with my mother Nellie, and at 38 was my Nan and Grandad Elsie and Percy.  I know of the gypsies and lived opposite Charlotte Davies a descendant of the Black Patch Gypsies. The park was occupied by 7 WRAF durring WW2. I also remember a fair in the park in the late forties and recall the Prefabs being built. I played on the site as a girl in the field opposite Anne Road which was made into a large pool for fire fighting durring the war years. After my husband Eddie came out of the Navy we moved into number 5 which backed onto the park, our son Karl attended Merryhill School from its opening.  Glenyss Morris nee Morgan

 As a child in the late sixties and early seventies, my sisters and I practically lived in Black PatchPark, with most of the other children around the area. We lived in Kitchener Street - there used to be Mrs Brindle's newspaper and grocery shop on the corner and a great fish shop on Foundry Road (leading to the Brook). We spent hours at the park - and used to play with the Park Keeper's son and daughter (Anne and Roy - can't remember their surname, but my sister Sue probably could!). It would be a pity to see the Park demolished. It did provide a safe haven to play and some of the outer fields were also very tranquil and peaceful. I wish you luck in your quest to save the Park.
 Yvonne Kelly   Email:

My name is Cynthia Bignell nee Formon, and my mom ran a general store in Kitchener Street from about 1949 to 1971.
Our back garden used to back onto Black patch Park, and myself and two brothers (Donald and Robert) spent many happy hours playing there. If we were lucky, we could climb over our garden fence into the park, saving us the walk round. But not if the park keeper was about, he was one to be feared!!
When I left school I went to work at A.E.Griffiths in Booth Street, and used the park as a short cut to work.
I only heard about your fight to save the park when a friend of our folk club Bryn Phillips sang a song he'd written about the park and gypsies who lived there. I hope you have heard it, if not I can give you Bryns details.
Congratulations on your web site, I found it really interesting it brought back a lot of happy memories, good luck with the campaign,
Cynthia Bignall nee Formon

We, the Jukes family lived for almost 100 years at number 33.Kitchener Street
My Nan, Doris Elizabeth Jukes (nee Allen) lived there with her mother, father and siblings and when she married Charles Laurence Jukes (my Grandad), they remained at No. 33 and had seven children, Laurie, Ron (my Dad), Horace (there is a picture of him on the site in the Boys Brigade), Dorothy, Rita, Jennifer and Patrick.

I was born in my nan's front room in 1955, unfortunately for my mother this was during licensing hours and my dad had to be fetched from the Railway Tavern in Wellington Street. I have wonderful childhood memories of Kitchener Street, especially the sweet shop, run by Mrs Forman, with the big fridge full of lovely ice lollies and playing French cricket and hop scotch in the horse-road. I remember Mrs Mee. who would sit out on her step from dawn to dusk watching us children play and the Farrington family Nan's next door neighbours. At Christmas time the Carol singers would knock the door. My Nan would call them inside the house and would not give them anything until they sang a couple of Carols around the piano.

Blackpatch Park also holds lovely memories for me, playing on the swings and the witches hat. We would climb over Nan's fence at the bottom of the garden and roll down the hill. In winter we would go down on sledges in the snow. My uncle Pat would ask me to go the park with him and his friends to play football. Yes, you guessed it, they only wanted me to play goalie for them, but then we would walk back round to Nan's stopping for a bag of chips from Jackson's chippie in Wellington Street, so I suppose it was worthwhile in the end.
My Nan was an auxiliary nurse during world war II. She told me a story of how the senior doctor asked if there was a married lady available to help attend to a solider who had injuries to his private parts. I dread to think what would have happened to that poor solider if there was not a married lady available!! It was at this time around 1941 - 1942 that my Dad and his brother were playing in Blackpatch Park when a fighter plane pilot frantically waved at them, presumably to get out of the way, although my Dad and his brother thought this was a friendly wave and waved back, only to see the pilot crashing into the nearby Averys factory. My dad wonders who this pilot could have been who may have given his life rather than crash into the children in the park. If anyone knows how I could find this information, please let me know.
My dad, Ron is in the process of writing his memoirs/book and he has many more tales to tell of life in Kitchener Street and surrounding area, so no doubt I will be sending more stories through, but in the meantime, please put Kitchener Street on the map!
Many thanks and keep up the good work.
Carol Jukes     E:Mail:


This is a photo of my great uncle Ernie Baker with his wife Jessie baker, and i was wondering does anyone reconise them, they lived in 40 Kitchener Street, this photo was taken in 1958. 

Kind regards. george baker



I wonder if you would assist me in seeking information from residents that live in our area of Winson Green. I have recently received information regarding my Grandmother that lived in Talbot Street from 1920-1952 having further received proof from the 1901-11 census that they lived at no. 1 Kitchener Street off Perrot Street nr Black Patch Park if anyone recalls the name Ravenall the majority of the families children attend Handsworth New Road School. I knew a great number of names in the area but never heard this name mentioned.

I would appreciate a reply from anyone who knew the RAVENALL family.

Colin Mills


During the depression years of the 1920's and 30's I spent my childhood in a small house in Kitchener Street, Winson Green. There were six in our family two sisters, Doris and Olive, one brother Albert and my mother and father. 

My father's name was Albert Frank Robins and my mother's name Winifred Clarice. 

My name is John William Robins and I married Dora Amy Pratt who lived in Perrott Street at the same time. We were married at Bishop Latimers Church where I had served in the choir as a boy. 

My father was totally blind caused by an accident while working in his father's factory. This happened just before my mother and father were married. 

I hav e many fond memories of life in and around the Black Patch Park and hope that it can be saved from the developers. 


KIRBY ROAD 02/06/2012
I have just found your Webb site it brings back a lot of memories for me . I used to go to Benson Road school in the late 60.s we lived in Kirby Road number 36, it would be great to hear from any one who remembers me .
I used to always hang around with Alan Robinson, David Dipple and Donna Watson . There are two names I remember on here they are Susan Tolley and Susan Dennelly.
Andrew Callahan

KIRBY ROAD 10/08/08

Just found the picture of Kirby Rd/ Bacchus Rd shop 'A.D. Wimbush' on your excellent website. I've recently visited the area after finding out that my Gt-gt-grandparents lived at 1 Kirby Rd in Winson Green. A little sad to see that the shop in the photography, which is right next to number 1, has now turned bright orange!
My gt-gt-grandparents lived in the area (certainly Kirby Road and Tew Park Road) for at least 40 years from around the 1890s and worked at the Birmingham Asylum - they were called Alfred and Lydia Yarnall. It appears they enjoyed this line of work after the moved from the asylum at Powick. They also had three children - Harry, John and Daisy. I'm fairly sure that Daisy (Daisy Marion Yarnall) also worked at the hospital before passing away in 1949. I'm not sure anyone would remember Alf and Lydia as they would have died around 70-80 years ago, but any information on them or Daisy would be greatly received.
Keep up the excellent work on the website - it's just a pity most of the shops, pubs and streets were the Yarnall's played and worked have been demolished before I had the chance to have a good look around. Thanks again, Pete  Nicholls

KIRBY ROAD 17/01/05
My mothers family lived in Kirby Road until my Grandfather died in 1964. Their name was Howes, the childrens name was Stanley., clifford,Marjory, Joyce (my mother) Iris & Albert. Clifford, Joyce, Iris & Albert are still alive and would love to hear from anyone who remembers them.
John Niven   Email:

I was born in Kirby Road, Winson Green in 1928.  I left in 1953 when I got Married and went to live in West
Bromwich.  I have lived in Reddich, & Studley.  I moved here, Fareham in Hampshire, in 1996.
But Winson Green is where I enjoyed myself, Watson Pool, The  Bluebell Woods and Black Patch Park I could go on & on. by Albert Howes


Donald Trapp about 5 years old outside 15 Kent Street North the shadowy person in the doorway is David Chapman, there is a another person in the photo with his arm in a sling you can just make it out, I wonder who that was???   the bike belongs to David Chapman.                                               June Chapman, Donalds step sister a bridsmaid at her brother Davids wedding in 1958 and Donald Trapp at the same wedding in 1958.                                                                                                                                John and June Houghton          

 25/09/2012  David Chapman from Kent Street North at his wedding to Valerie outside
St Chrysostoms church in 1958 .
Can anyone name the other guests?
Man second  in from the left  is John Houghton he married June Chapman the bridsmaid next to him in the picture and also provided the photos.

Second Photo:  L to R  June Chapman, Walter Trapp, Ivy Trapp (Chapman), ?, David Chapman and Valerie, ?, ?, ?. 1958

KENT STREET NORTH ----- DEVONSHIRE STREET                                                                       PRINCESS ALEXANDRA FOOTBALL TEAM

thanks to Hillary Richards nee Leighton

I was so impressed with this site and never realised so many people had enjoyed living in Kent Street North. I was born at 50 Kent Street North which was on the corner of the street and off Lodge Road . I remember how lots of us used to get together and play as kids do. Valerie Chaplain, Ann Roberts, Mavis Saunders, and me Sandra Hingley. Valerie married my cousin John Hingley. I went to All Saints primary school and remember many of the friends I had there. I wonder if any of them remember our class doing hand bell ringing, I think (if I am right ) it may have been one Xmas play we did for the school, ( correct me if I am wrong). I remember Brian Rose, Johnny Hatton, Ernest Brown, Elizabeth Derrick, Shirley Bowen, Carol Prichard, David Yates and many more. Our teacher was Mr. Burley, head mistress Mrs Cole. Some of us had to go to the annexe down on the flat ,if I remember I think that was on Icknield Street. I have read lots of the letters printed on this site and found it very nostalgic and remembered lots of things I had unfortunately forgotten. I went to Handsworth New Road Girls School and most of the people I have mentioned moved there to. I have very fond memories of Kent Street North and lived there until I married. Then I moved to Daventry, Northampton where I have lived for the last thirty eight years. I do hope someone will remember some of the things I have mentioned, they were very happy times.  Sandra Day ( nee Hingley )

John and  Matilda Underhill

My maternal Grandparents all lived in the All Saints area, but what surprises me is the amount of times they seem to have moved house.John Underhill, my Great Granddad married Matilda Kirkham at St. Mary's in 1883. Their first child Nellie was born at 44 Abbey Street in 1884, their second Ada Emily was born at 5 Clifton Terrace, Kent Street North in 1886, then came John George in 1888 born at 30 Devonshire Street. In 1890 when their fourth child, Alfred William was born they were living at 5 Ada Place, Kent Street North and they are listed on the 1891 Census as living at 2 Kent Street North. My Granddad Harry Joseph was born in 1892 at 220 Lodge Road and their youngest child Margaret Victoria was born in 1897 at 139 Lodge Road, but by 1901 the family had moved again and were living at 21 Norton Street.
Both my Granddad & Great Granddad worked in the Jewellery Quarter for Peyton & Pepper but I have been told that Great Granddad John Underhill worked from home at one time and that 220 Lodge Road was a shop. I wonder if anyone could confirm this for me please?
We know from my Great Gran, Matilda Underhill's (nee Kirham) death certificate that on 22nd. October 1911 the family had moved yet again and were living at 2A John Street, Aston and in 1915 they appear to have moved to 5 Park Grove, Park Road, just a few streets away. By 1916 the family had moved yet again and were living at 70 Anglesey Street, where my Great Granddad was to settle at last, for the rest of his days.
In 1918 my Granddad Harry Joseph Underhill married a local girl, Edith Rose Hill, who lived at 19 Devonshire Street  Marg & Steve
To read the rest of this great story please go to the stories page, well worth the effort.

I attended school with the Poole family, all great footballers, Freddie,Billy,Kenny Poole* played for my football club,Called "Winson Green Royal" we played at Black Patch Park. I also knew big Billy Jones (ashphelter) and Billy jnr. and Horace & Doris Davis and at the pub on the corner Devonshire Avenue and K.S.N. the Spillers. I could continue for ever. Colin Mills Don Sreet 1931-1963.


Two photographs take in 1953 in Kent Street North at the Coronation celebration, note picture on left shows The Princess Alexandra pub (The Alec) sent in by Maureen Harwood who had them sent to her by BETTY AND JOHN FISHER who came from KENT STREET NORTH.
Maureen Polack nee Harwood   E:mail

  KENT STREET NORTH 1940  to  1960ish

DOUGIE PRICE 04/02/07                                                                                                   Information requested on your site regarding a dear friend of ours Dougie Price please feel free to get in touch and we can help.
 Eric and Pat Clayton

KENT STREET NORTH 24/09/06                         
 I was just reading the letter from Carol Dyer.
She says she used to live at 4/16 Kent Street North. I did too! I am so sorry that Carol has passed on as it would have been good to discuss the house which I remember clearly but my brothers do not! We moved there in 1967/8. We were a family of Irish immigrants I was 5 years old and I had an older brother Michael aged 6, two other brothers were born in the next 2 years. Six of us in a 1 down 2 up for the next five years, when the council decided to knock them down.
I remember playing on the road that lead to the REC (Devonshire Street then Devonshire Avenue) It was steep and we used to ride our makeshift bogeys down the hill. I have lots of other memories. Some good some bad. My friends and I used to call the Flat "the flats" we thought it was called the flats because of the block of flats that was built at the bottom of Lodge Road hill just before you got to the flats and the shops where mom used to do her shopping each week.

Also at 4/16 and associated courts we used to call the brewhouses "bluehouses"! Many of them were painted blue and I never saw them used for their purpose. By the late sixties the families were going to the washeteria on I think Bacchus road. The bluehouses became dens for the kids and were in serious disrepair. We used to climb through the holes on the roofs which were made of something that looked very much like corrugated asbestos. I do hope it was not!

I went to St Stephen's RC school Nineveh Road Handsworth (the Irish catholic thing) and notice that their are no entries for this school at all! It has since shut down. I would be quite interested to hear from people who went there. Eileen Buckley and Noeleen Whelan were particular friends Eileen lived in Norton street and Noeleen lived on the road that was at the top of the gully past the REC (Talbot Street?).
I had a limited number of photos which have been lost and they were of the outside of 4/16 which we sometimes called 4/15 Kent Street North. One of the photos was of me in my first holy communion dress next to a friend (Caroline O Connell or O Connor) in a green dress. Three years later there is a photo of me at school in the same dress that my friend was wearing! Nothing went to waste in those days!

Does anyone remember a trip to Weston Super Mare organized by councilor Tony Banks or is this another Tony Banks?
This was my first trip to the seaside and I remember it vividly. it was a free trip for the two streets KSN and Norton Street.

I went on to George Dixon Grammar School in 1973 and Liverpool Uni in 1980 and now teach in a secondary school (Chemistry) in the North West of England. So it was not too bad a start in life.

Rhoda Ware    Email:

My links to the area now are limited to the quizzes at the Black Eagle in Factory Road. I hope you are interested in what I know about my  family. The Cliftons married into the Eades family of Markby Road and the Cadby Family of Aberdeen Street. William Clifton's father William Clifton b.1797 was born in Great Malvern and died in 1878 in Wellington Street. He was a bricklayer too and his father before that.

I read your bit on the history pages telling about the terraces in Kent Street North. I was excited to find that one of the Terraces had been called Malvern Terrace as this seems to confirm that my ancestor had something to do with naming some of them. This ancestor was William Clifton, He was born in 1842. His father had been born at St Ann's Well in Great Malvern and in the 1891 he is recorded as living at 4 Clifton Terrace. They had lived there probably since it was built, as he was a bricklayer journeyman. I have a birth certificate dates 1884 with that address on it. Could you please tell me what the house was like and if possible send me a picture, which might be of interest to me. I shall most likely be adding my story to the list even though I never saw the street as it was.
Thanks again for the information!
Paul Clifton  E-mail

Does anyone have a photoof Clifton Terrace???? or Kent Street North?????


KENT STREET NORTH 07/04/06  Kavanagh and Hyde

My family lived and worked from Devonshire St, Lees St and Kent St North. I have just pushed the magical age of 6 Zero and have received Senior
Citizen's Centro Pass.

Mother rented 23 Lees St in 1943 ( from a Mrs ---- ) whilst Dad was in West Africa and then Burma - I came along in 1945. Nan and Grandad Kavanagh lived at 8 Kent St North. Uncle Bill and Alice Cotton lived at 2 Lees St and Bill and Flossy Fell lived next door( daughter Regina is still around in Bromsgrove) Mom was bought up in Devonshire St and went to Norton St school around 1923 ( she has photographs of her in school plays) Dad and Grandad ran a coal transport business from the yard ( mentioned as Kavanagh's coal yard ) after dad came back from the army in 1945.
 I have a super photograph of his lorries parked in Kent St North which gives a lovely impression of the road and the back to back terraces.
We left Lees St around 1954 and aspired to Handsworth ( ho ho ho ). Dad's business went on in
Kent St North in one form and another until the good
old Council took it off him in the late 70's (my daughters just about remember the yard)

I remember - the bull from the REAL awakening us at around 0700 hrs in Lees St - Swain's groceries shop halfway down the street and up from
Anscombes on the corner - Horse drawn milkmen - 1 penny bangers making super boom's up entries - Train spotting down the bridge on Handsworth New Road ( a little later that is) - buying Topee helmets from Bushell's yard (ex-WD on Lodge road)  - buying red, yellow and green flags on sticks from Bushell's -Dad buying me half an ex-army sledge from Bushell's as well.

No one has mentioned the CO-OP in Bachaus Road (do you remember your divi number) or the baths ( in the bath/wash house with Dad -up to my neck in lovely hot water)

Mother is 81 and is still rather sharp, so after visiting your site I questioned her(and recorded it) about the facts -
Enoch Wassell most of the female members of the family were wooed by his son Teddy .
The Kavanagh's were 4 sons of a Boar War veteran, (the 8th Royal Irish Hussars, who was also the son of a Trooper of the same Regiment, who missed the Charge of the Light Brigade because he had been court martialed and reduced to the ranks the January before) - one of which ran the outdoor on the corner of Norton St. The family home was on Lodge Road. We also married into the Richardson family of Handsworth New Road (Richardson;s garage opposite the school)

Mother remembers the glass blowers making their own bottles and sending the lad down to the outdoor for them to be filled with beer.

Remember - Dr McKinnon of Lodge Road, The Screws houses around the wall of the Nick, Bert's the hairdresser on Lodge road just down from Don Street - Tinegates Wood yard - Mr Ginster in the furniture department of Norton's on the Flat - Soho Poll wharf - The butchers just up from Benson Road School -

My uncle Geoff is just 80 and lived down the Flat end of Park road. His wife ran a hairdressers shop there - he worked as a delivery driver for the
Birmingham Mail in the 50's - remember their Austin vans ( were they red orgreen)

Mike Hyde


Homes in KENT STREET NORTH were a mixture, on our side of the road we had Albert, Russell and Victoria Terraces together with Malvern and Matlock Places, (sounds posh, but they were not) on the other side were Court Yards 1 to 8 and the best in the street Clifton Terrace a total of approximately one hundred homes. At best the houses could be described as adequate with, no hot water, no bathrooms, shared lavatories, brew-houses and miskins. The terraces however provided a wonderful warren of places to hide, play and get into trouble in.
Ted Rudge E:mail


Just found you web site, lived in Kent Street North until late 1950's what a change!!.
Great memories of Winson Green as a child.Thanks for your photo's . Also info about the Gypsys in Back Patch Park.

We used to live a 4/41 Russell Terrace..Mom & Dad ..Alma & Arthur Bayliss & my sister Pat. I can just remember some of our Neighbours..Mrs Adams (Who kept chickens in her front Garden!) Mr & Mrs Payne & their son Keith & the Spooner family. At the bottom of the terrace on the opposite side of the road there was a little shop (Can't rembember the name) (Mrs PLUME).

We had no hot water...kept coal under the stairs and our bath hung on a nail on the outside wall!!!.I can remember my mom (She passed away last year aged 93) doing the washing in the 'brewhouse' at the top of the terrace also all the toilets for the terrace were there as well!

My dad worked in the jewellery quarter involved in the manufacturer of same.

I can rember going with him up Lodge road to somewhere by the canal to have glass batteries charged for our TV (Accumulator shop was on the corner of Lodge Rd and Harmer street) 

As a family one of our regular treats was the tram ride to the Lickey the summer....magic if you could get a seat up top at the front!!.

My Auntie, Uncle & Gran lived at 61, Musgrave Road (Horace & Emily Ward) and I remember going with my Cousin Anita to Mrs Emmings little shop for sweets when we used to visit.

I was at Benson Road School until the late 1950's when dad decided we should try to get a better way of life in Cornwall...and all of us dad, mum,my sister, her husband Doug Martin & my baby nephew Stuart piled all our belongings into an old Bedford van & moved to Cornwall....lived in a old rented caravan for a while...but it all came good in the end thanks to dear Mom & Dads efforts.

As and when I can think of things I will pop them on your website,thank you for caring enough to creat it ........I will get my sister & her husband over to read through it....if anyone has any questions or the think they may remember us please ask tham to leave a message on your site..

Once Again Thank you. Dave & Karen Bayliss.   [ My Wife comes from 'Brum' as well but we met in Cornwall !!]
David Bayliss  Email:

I have just heard about your web site and had a quick look. What memories it brought back  
I was born in Kent Street North 1952 my name Susan Cooke my sisters are Ann and Doreen  our parents were Lily and Walter we lived half way down the street at no 12.
I also remember the "Flat" and Yarnalds, Woolworths and the dripping cakes on a Saturday that was our treat.
I went to Benson Road School then Handsworth NewRoad School.
Somewhere in my loft I have photo's of Kent Street North.
Hope you have another reunion!!!!
Keep up the good work,. regards  Susan Haller (Cooke) Email


Wedding Photo taken 16th October 1931 at Devonshire Street of George Pritchard and Rose nee Godwin Maternal Grandparents of Paul Gedhard who sent in both photos.   Email:
(Looks like the R.E.A.L. in the background )


I was born in Kent St North in Jan 1931 the youngest of five children one of whom died with diptheria before I was born.We lived at no. 9 Victoria Terrace the last house on the left next to the brewhouse.There was a row of
about five toilets at the top of the terrace serving about ten houses.I remember the "Alex" on the corner and a fish and chip shop on the opposite corner.There was a factory in Devonshire St between Kent St and Lees St on the far side and a little sweet shop above it towards Norton St. outside of which there was a vending machine from which one could get two Woodbines and two matches in a packet for a penny.
My father lived at 23 Lees St in a family of 7 boys and 1 girl and he worked in the Jewellry quarter as a polisher.My mother lived at 1/5 Piddock St and served as a barmaid in her uncles pub.They were married in 1922.
The Railway pub was run by Rose (can't remember her maiden name) in the early thirties who became my aunt when she married my uncle Harry (youngest father's brother).She lived at the top of Wharf St on the left hand
side.They later moved to manage a pub in Smethwick called "The Engineer"just down the road from the tram terminus probably Wellington or Boulton St just inside the Smethwick boundary.
I attended Benson Road infant school until we moved in 1939 and remember the"rec" in Musgrave St, I had to walk up a path between the "rec" and the railway to get to Benson Road.
I returned to the area as I attended Handsworth Grammar in Grove Lane after winning a scholarship from 1941 to1946.
I have fond memories of the Saturday afternoon "twopenny crush" at the Winson Green picture house we used to walk it and save the tram fare to buy sweets with.They used to show a serial "Flash Gordon" and "The Lone Ranger"
I remember. There was the "Rowlands Bakery" in Norton St, the building still stands but
is derelict now.
Hope this adds a little more information for your excellent website.
James Simms  E-mail


Firstly, congratulations on a great website – my granddad Edward Mann grew up in Kent Street North from about 1913, having being born in Aston in 1908. He married in 1940 and moved to Smethwick, before coming back to Birmingham in 1950 and living in St Michaels Hill, Handsworth.
His father was (Edward) John Mann, who lived at 4 back of 22 Kent Street North for 50 years, from 1913 until he died in 1963. He lived there with his wife Lizzie (nee Cook). Lizzie died in 1952 and Edward John used to pay a neighbour, Dorothy Shurmer, a small amount each week to make his dinners for him. In January 1963, he had a lodger living with him, who my dad thinks was a John Keen. Edward John called him down one morning to make sure he was up for work, and by the time John had got downstairs, Edward John had died!
I’d be grateful if you could post this on your website –
Best wishes with the website – keep up the good work.
Dave Mann, Email:

KENT STREET NORTH   Between 1940 - 1961   
Homes in Kent Street North were a mixture, on our side of the road we had Albert, Russell and Victoria Terraces together with Malvern and Matlock Places, (sounds posh, but they were not) on the other side were Court Yards 1 to 8 and the best in the street Clifton Terrace a total of approximately one hundred homes. At best the houses could be described as adequate with, no hot water, no bathrooms, shared lavatories, brew-houses and miskins. The terraces however provided a wonderful warren of places to hide, play and get into trouble in.  Our house no.40, fronted Russell Terrace, enabling us to have a cellar but it was always under water, before using the coal we had to dry it out.  Attached to ours were four more houses, they were like most of the others in the district, one room down and two up.  Gardens about 8-foot square lead of the passageway.  Our house had a side and front door; the front door was always locked, but could opened onto three steps.  The steps provided a seat and a meeting place for the local kids it was illuminated by a gas lamppost directly out side.  Many a bucket of water was passed under the door to break-up the meetings.

    As children we tended to group or gang with others in the street.  Outsiders from the adjacent streets were treated with caution.  We played our own games lasting all day until the night came, then our mothers started rounding us up for bed. At the Lodge Road end of the street there were two long, high walls, one on each side of the horse-road.  In the summer this was our cricket pitch and in the winter our football pitch.  At each end of the street one of us would look out for the local policeman (always around), one day we did not see him coming and ended up at Dudley Road Police Station.  Our parents were sent for and we all received a telling of for ”playing football in the street!!”  Much agro was also received when retrieving the ball that had accidentally found it's way over the wall into the gardens of the big houses on either corner of Lodge Road.
In the middle of Kent Street North, opposite our house was Kavanaghers coal yard, next door to them was Mrs Plumes shop she sold everything.  Sweet were on ration most of my childhood and I always remember Mrs Plume saying, you can't have any because they will make your nose bleed.  Another shop could be found at the Devonshire Avenue end of Kent St run by Mrs Piper; I loved her boiled ham. I remember one day going in there, for somebody, to fetch some boil beans and came out with dried peas. Next-door to Pipers shop, occupying the corner of Kent Street and Devonshire Avenue was the glazed white tiled Ansells Public House run by Mr and Mrs Kemp.  Officially called the “Princess Alexandra” but affectionately known as the “Alec” by the locals. Most nights the pub was packed out, football, darts, and dominoes teams competed from there.  On to the other corner was Jackson's fruit and vegetable shop, penny specs could be bought from there but most times they were given if you asked nicely.  Round the corner in Devonshire Street  was our local fish and chip shop Sarah's owned by Mrs Jeavons.  Sarah would let us youngsters take the eyes out of the potatoes and hand chip them; we got paid 6d and a bag of chips a night.  Any newspaper that did not end up on a nail in the lavatory was welcomed at Sarah's, for a good bundle you were rewarded with a bag of fried batter bits (scratching's).  Ted Rudge    E:mail

Ted Rudge, "National Senior Learner of the Year"  Award Winner.
 Receiving his award from the Rt Hon. Ruth Kelly MP, Secretary of State for Education and Skills at the launch of Adult Learners' Week 2005 (23/05/05)
at The Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre in Westminster, London.

 Far left  Alan Tuckett, Director of NIACE.
 2nd from the  left  Peter Leather from the University of Birmingham

 Photograph from     Hollis

"We lost ourselves for 2 hours yesterday evening laughing and remembering the old times whilst reading your Winson Green Website."My how the years have rolled back"! - Our "end of terrace town house" (ha,ha) fronted on to Kent St North with the tradesman's entrance in Clifton Terrace. I now live in a village north of Leicestershire by the River Soar  (a far cry from Kent Street North) but have often thought about Kent St and the many childhood friends I had in that street. I can remember those names mentioned on the web site and many more. I can still see you Ted and others in the street playing cricket and football up against Kench's wall.
I also remember old Sarah Jevons very well and how she used to talk to the chips and keep her money in her knickers. Sandra Kench (Hingley) my hubby's cousin lived at 50 Kent street North one day she went to cut chips in Sarah's fish shop and as she walked out, having finished her task, a cockroach crawled out of her shoe. It was horrible but we couldn't stop laughing! My, wouldn't the environmental officer have had fun in those uncomplicated days!
We all seem to have moved away from Kent Street and used our childhood experiences to build a better lives for ourselves - BUT we will never forget Kent Street North and the fun we used to have. One of the highlights of times in Kent Street was when we at last had our own dustbin (perhaps you weren't as posh as us Ted and still had to share!)
We got married at All Saints and were mortified to find just a 'car park' when we returned on a day trip to Brum a few years ago! "
Val(erie) Hingley (Nee Chaplain)


My Memories of Kent St North 1940 - 1962 17/08/03

My name was Doreen Cooke I went to Benson Road Jr school and then Handsworth New Road Girls school, I lived at 12 Kent St North, next to Mrs Plumes shop and Kavanaghers coal yard.
I used to go to Mr & Mrs Williams Sunday school institutes, one very hot Sunday my friend and I didn't fancy going so we went to Blackpatch Park instead. We had no sense of time in those days and didn't get home until 4 o`clock our mom had the police out looking for us `We NEVER did it again I can remember going every Friday to Mrs Jeavons Fish & Chip Shop as my farther got paid on Fridays it was the only night we could afford fish & chips, Mrs Jeavons kept her purse up the leg of her knickers, if she hadn`t got change she would go to the back of the shop, and get the purse from her knickers to give us change we used to laugh about it, Once I went with my friend June to Lodge Road coal wharf for some coal, we put the coal in the barrow and pushed it to Junes house we opened the cellar grate to empty the coal down, as we tipped the barrow up the handle went though June`s moms window (Did we catch out)  June & I still laugh about it now,

My father Walter Cooke always went down to the Alec Pub for a few pints on a Sunday he would always bring back a bottle of Woodpecker cider to have with our Sunday dinner, I was aloud to have a small cup of it, we had not got any glasses we couldn't afford them in those days.

When I got home from school on a Monday I had to light the fire in the Brew House down the yard for mom (Lilly Cooke) to do the washing when she came home from work, she would be there until dark scrubbing and boiling the whites, if it rained we had to dry the washing in the attic there was a line from one side of the wall to the other, and there was a small black fire grate up there but was never enough coal to have a fire very often.

I can remember playing out all day with the gang we never got in much trouble and we all played together at the top of the street lodge road end. I have so many happy memories I could go on all day my grandchildren love to hear the story's of the days when we had no hot water or a bath or electricity, And how we used to take a bucket to bed in case we had to go in the night as the toilet were outside the house in the back yard.

I would like to send my regards to all my old friends of Kent Street North and I will always remember the good time we had growing up there together
Yours sincerely  Doreen Rotheroe nee Cooke Email:


KENT STREET NORTH  1944 - 1965  
by Margaret Layton (now Clements)
MEMORIES of Kent St North hold a very special place in my heart.There where loads of wonderful memories, here are just a handful. I was born in March 1944.
I went to Benson Road Junior School then on to Handsworth New Road Secondary Modern School

OUR HOUSE. We lived in a back-to-back house, down an entry. No electric, we used to have to buy gas mantles, very thin white things you had to handle them with care. An outside toilet with a brew house in the middle of the yard.

OUR ENTERTAINMENT was the wireless (No TV).
Workers Playtime, Housewives Choice, Two Way Family Favourites.
Billy Cotton Band Show, Have A Go Joe with Wilfred Pickles “Whats on the table Mabel”.
I suppose my favourite day of the week was Tuesday. That's when my mom went to collect her family allowance 7/6d from the post office down THE FLAT.  She always had our favourite comics waiting for us when my brother and I got home from school. My comics were School Friend and Girls Crystal Along with our comics was our cakes Jam turnovers and Dripping cakes from “Hunts” on The Flat.
THE SUNDAY SCHOOL INSTITUTE LODGE  ROAD. My friends and I used to go to the Institute the highlight of which was the Anniversary parade round the streets. The Boys Brigade in front followed by the Girl Guides and Brownies and then us dressed up in our best clothes proudly marching behind. The Institute was run by a lovely couple Mr. & Mrs. Williams who later on in  the 50's opened a youth club which is where I first heard Cliff and The Everlys.

I have memories of taking my nans wireless batteries up Lodge Rd to be charged up. Memories of pushing an old push chair up Lodge Rd to the wharf to collect coal. The 96 bus.(thats another story) if you missed one the game was  to try and beat the next one to the top of Lodge Rd or down to The Flat, what an achievement if you managed to beat  the bus.


What a treat that was to go and see all the films. My Moms favourite being Alan Ladd and my dads John Wayne and Doris Day.  At the interval a cup of ice cream (or tub) with a little wooden spoon or orange maid iced lolly. Then when the film was over, everyone trying to get out or not leaving until the national anthem was over, the Queen's picture sitting there on her horse. And then if we missed the bus, my dad would carry me on his shoulders down Lodge Rd.                                    

MY MOST TREASURED MEMORY OF KENT ST NORTH. Months before Xmas I saw this beautiful doll in Anscombes shop window (corner of Lees St). I can't remember how much it was but I knew my mom could never afford to buy it. I wanted this doll so much that every week I would go in and put my pocket money on it. Needless to say come Xmas that doll was mine. I took her everywhere with me, on the bus to my aunts up Newcombe Rd Handsworth  dressed in real baby clothes that one of the neighbours had given me. My doll even had to go the Dolls hospital on Soho Rd as her eyes had fallen into her head she got repaired and was still the most precious thing I'd ever had. I've never forgotten saving my pocket money to buy that doll.

I do remember if my mom ran out of milk she used to add water to it to make it go further. “Happy days though” “Poor we certainly were but such memories are rich in abundance”.Hope you enjoy reading this little bit of Kent St North.  I loved Kent St North, the people were wonderful. I've always lived in Winson Green, apart from six months in Harborne when first married in 1965, then moved back to Devonshire Street, then surprise back to Kent St North for a couple of years.
Best wishes  Margaret Clements nee Layton no email address. Contact    via

Memories of Kent St North 1940 - 1962 by Carol Dyer 10/07/04
Updated 26/09/04
An Email from Carol to Ted Rudge


My name is Carol the younger sister of Gwen. Our parents were Elsie and Bill Dyer and we lived across the road from you at 4 back of 16. You don't get house numbers like that any more thank God.
It was a lovely surprise when I read your chapter in the book, "A WALK DOWN THE FLAT", it brought back such a lot of memories as you were describing the houses etc. along the streets, it was if I was back walking with you.
I remember Plumes shop well, the strong smell of vinegar and all those bundles of firewood. Do you remember his old dog that used to sit on his step until late at night. My most vivid memory was when he left and the removal men dropped his piano from his bedroom window, what a racket, I couldn't begin to describe it, but I've never forgot how it sounded.
Do you remember the Jones who lived up your yard. Their young boy David used to sit on your step singing his own version of the Banana Boat song, "I see woman on bended knee flogging johnnies for 1/3d", it was so funny as he was only 3 or 4 at the time. He later went on to greater things when he drove the bread float into Mrs Rose's front window with Cathy inside. Poor Cathy even I at such a young age felt sorry for her.
My Dad was a bit of a poser at heart. He had just bought himself a new pair of flannels and a pair of white pumps, (eat your heart out Burtons),when he decided to stand at the top of our entry showing them off. All was well until Mrs. Clemsons scottie dog went up to him, had a sniff round, then peed up his leg.
You mentioned Mrs. Pipers shop. Do you remember Mrs. King who owned it before her. She was a rather large lady.
My Mom and Dad used to go to the "Alex" Pub run by Mr. and Mrs. Kemp. I knew their son Graham.
They also had a daughter Margie, she was quite glamorous, and served behind the bar and must have been very friendly.I can remember my Mom saying to my Dad ,"I'll give you bloody Margie Kemp", I don't know if it was more in her mind or my Dads, or perhaps it was the grey flannels and white pumps!.
You didn't mention the Cafe' next door to the R.E.A.L. it was run by Mrs. Berry till her husband died very young, it then turned into a general type of shop. I remember my Mom buying me a doll for Christmas from there.
The shop next to the coalyard was very non descript, but do you remember when the window full of fireworks went off, what a display for free.
The "mint" man "Piggy" used to frighten me to death. I would dread Sunday morning if I could smell lamb cooking as my Mom would send me round to get some at 2d a bunch.
I used to help Sarah Jeavons, as did many kids. I was in there one night when an irate Amy Woodcock from Norton Street came in, ( She had a daughter Sheila ), complaining. She had bought what she thought was a piece of roe, but unknown to Sarah, her husband had decided to batter a sausage for his supper. Poor Sarah, she had sold it to her as roe. I wonder if he realised that battered sausage would be very popular in later years.
Opposite Sarahs was the Outdoor up two high steps and next door was the penny Vantas shop.
I bet you can't remember the Streets Football team, Kent Street North Albion. The results were pinned up in a box outside Chapmans where June and David lived. David actually played for them, they didn't do very well and didn't last very long.
Was your garden really as small as you say, it always seemed huge to me, especially when you or John came to tell us off for climbing on the palings. Next to you were the Saunders whose husband was a bus driver. They had two girls Valerie and Mavis.
I remember the Jones and Broadbents whose boy always seemed to be walking on his hands.
I had two close friends in Kent Street, Valerie Chaplain and Maureen Ashwell who was my Bridesmaid, she lived behind the Boyce's. What a lovely close family the Boyces were.
I remember your Cousin Josie who had a nasty accident to her leg. I went to visit her in hospital, ( I was in there to have plaster removed off my broken wrist ). She was sitting up in bed with a doll, but someone had given her a lipstick and she had more on the doll and sheets than she did on herself. I wonder if she can remember it. She lived in Devonshire St where my Mom and Dad's close friends lived. Ivy and Bert Roath.
Who would have thought a chapter in a small paper back could evoke so many happy memories. I hope I haven't bored you too much.
Regards to your Family.
Ted, confession time, this letter was written two years ago and laid in it's pad not knowing where to send it. Then came the magic of the net. Will send pictures asap. Thanks for the photo of the Alex football team with my Dad and Bert Roath. I went to a few matches at Black patch park. I didn't understand it, but all that talent!!!
This is my Son Steve's computer so please reply to the e-mail adress from sender so he can recieve a reply. Thanks again
Regards Carol Walton nee Dyer

Carol and her mom Elsie, Guess what Elsie is holding in their back yard ????


My wife Carol Walton (Dyer) died on the 27th September 2005.
I am afraid that it has taken me this long to be able to draft this letter. It was Carol's wish to thank those who wished to speak to her about her article on the Website. Therefore in order to conclude the piece would you please include the following after Carols' contribution on the Website.

"May I sincerely thank those who wished to speak to me about my published memories of Kent Street North and the surrounding area on the Website. Namely, Doreen Rotheroe ( Cooke), Maureen Palin (Ashwell), Margaret Clements (Layton), Valerie Hingley (Chaplain)
 and David Chapman.
I am afraid that my battle against cancer prevented me from doing so and I was extremely disappointed at not being able to respond.
My thanks to Ted for a wonderful Website and for making these memories come alive and be made possible".
 My sincere thanks,
Gerald Walton.30/01/06

"This photo was taken on the 4th May 2004, three weeks after Carols major operation."
"Carol was married to Gerald Walton from Nechells for forty three years" .


l lived at 70 Lansdown Street my name was ANN RYAN then my mother was Sheila she worked at Bulpits and the Oak pub my father was Michael it was the best years of my life.
Ann James



My Mom and Dad both came from this area. My Mom lived in Lansdowne Street at the rear of number 25 in The Poplars, no. 2 I think, her maiden name was Smith. My Dad Cyril Barnard lived in Foundry Road, I'm not sure of the number. I also had and Aunt and Uncle who lived in Winson Street, up the top end near to Dudley Road. I can remember as a child visiting my Nans in Lansdowne St, and waiting for the bus on the bridge, to get back into Birmingham. It was great to look through the gaps in the metal and try to see the trains or if you were lucky a canal boat making its way along the canal.
Sue Beckett

LEES STREET  2612/2012
Great site wish I had found it before helped with the memories although still very blurred.
My name is MENAL WOOD I lived in Lees St from around 1956 to about 1961, my mom owned the first shop on the left hand side in Lees St from Lodge Road her name was Nelly Wood she was also known as Nelly Perry also she worked in the canteen in All Saint Hospital, she told me many stories about where she worked.
Some names I remember were:-
JEFFERY SMITH his mom and mine were best friends she used to give me my tea when my mom was at work, I laugh when I remember the tin baths on Friday night - was that real??
Mrs Carrol was another of moms best friends, Ann Carrol was always giving me black eyes and on her first night at a disco she came to ask my mom if her new dress was too low (how times have changed) I remember she looked great and when mom said she looked stunning she was so happy, Ann was one of a large family as I remember.
I remember vaguely a Jane Astle and Doreen Tolly. My mother looked after George Batch the old man who lived next door  I seem to remember he was quite famous in his day as a escapologist and magician.
Miss Legge was the very respected head of Benson Road School  I remember she was there for years the school would not have been so great except for her, she would have been given an OBE for her services in today's society
At Handsworth New Road school Mr Parry was head of the annex, Macfarlane PE teacher,  Handle bar Williams was the music teacher,  Karata chop Jones was a little welsh man and Mr Huxley was the  wood work teacher.
Others I knew were Steven Harper, Graham Clemson ( I still know ), Ray Avery, Jane Astle, Pat Moor (love to meet he again), John Chapman, Robert Martin (my cousin), Jane Astle ( saw her once in Catterick in the forces) and Steven Harper (Harpers coaches)
Finally remembering The REC in Musgrave Road all the pubs the Don, Devonshire,  Railway , and The engine, the  barbers on the corner of Don St who gave me a Crew Cut I became a hippy through that experience.
If any one remembers me or my mom I would love to hear from them.
Menal Wood  or by phone on 07807007906

LEES STREET 26/07/2011
I was wondering if anyone remembers or has heard of my grandfather William Wood, who was born in the workhouse and lived in around Winson Green up to the age of about 14. He then disappears until he is 21 when he marries my grandmother Maud Bishop on Christmas Day 1910.
The searching I have done has shown that the family lived all around the Winson Green Area. I know my grandfather William Wood and his wife Maud Bishop lived in Lees Street, off Lodge road for most of their lives. I was also born there and lived there until I was 5.
William is a bit of a mystery. He was born in the workhouse, Dudley road in 1889. His mother was not married and he grew up believing his grandparents were his parents. in 1901 he was living with his aunt in Eva road, Winson green. His mother Ada has disappeared (presumed dead but may have married and moved away) and his grandfather James was also dead. On Christmas day 1910 he married Maud, they were both then living at the same address in Kent Street North.
My mum remembers her father saying he had lived in London for a while so I presume that was some time between 1901 and 1910.
The other mystery is that his father was never named but the name Tew (not sure of spelling) was always linked to him and he maintained it was his real name. His mother Ada was a domestic servant.
I know none of this is uncommon for this time but if anyone knows anything that might help fit the jigsaw I would be so grateful. Many thanks
Sue Caldicott

LEES STREET 27/05/08
I wondered if anyone could help me. In 1891, my greatgrand parents, James and Anne Davies, lived at 9 Lees Cottages Lees Street, they had several children, one a fifteen year old girl called Julia Ann.
She married Fredrick Brown, and in 1901 was living at 9 Devonshire Street. In all the diaries ect. you have from relatives, does anyone know of them. I know that it is a long shot, but if anyone has any pictures which may include them, could you email them to me, I am tracing my family history, and to be able to find a picture, to show my mum, it would be fantastic. I hope you can help.
Julia [Mata Hari]

LEES STREET 17/12/06
I'm trying to contact any ex - Lees St tenants who can remember our family who lived there from 1966-1971, our surname is Carroll, mom and dad were George and Kathleen, sisters Anne, Marten, Eileen Jean and brothers Stephen, Richard and Collin. Thanks Richard Carroll

LEES STREET 05/11/06
For some time now I have had this niggling thought in my head, a memory about a train crash involving pupils and staff from Benson Rd school. My grandmother was on the train when it crashed and was badly injured along with the two pupils who were killed. Her name was Gladys Cross probably known as Mrs Cross, the head teacher I recall was Miss Legge. Gladys Cross used to live at 33 Lees street and my mother Janet Cross was one of her five children. The name Georgie Bull also rings a bell, any info on the train crash would be appreciated as I would like to research it further. Many thanks Cliff

LEES STREET 19/04/06
What a fantastic find! I came across this site while mooching, you see my family; mom Sandra Trevis and Baba (Billy) Ali lived on Lees St; 3back a9, although I was born in 1969 I was too young to remember most of the fun, but having 2 older sister, Sharon and Angela, I still to this day love listening to the story’s they tell me only now I can put a picture to the park, All saints and other story’s thanks to this site.
Kind Regards   Jantina Allison
Still popping in now and then for an update! We lived at 3/9 Lees street until the late 70’s together with my 2 sisters my Mom Sandra Trevis and my Dad Billy Ali,
Both still around and would love to hear from anyone who remembers them,
Keep up the good work, still a great site !
Jantina Allison

Does anyone know about LEES STREET and how it got it's name. I believe it is due to a family I am researching who had 24 children! 12 of these were twins. Mother may have been named sarah, dad worked at winson green prison teaching shoe making. Any info would be much appreciated.
Dawn Richy

LEES STREET 12/05/03

My family lived at 58 Lees Street, Winson Green from 1960 - 1975.
I went to Benson Road school and was in my fourth year in 1970 when the whole school left for a trip to Rhyl in the summer months. On our return, the train derailed and the last three carriages overturned. Two children were killed, Wayne Dandy and Catherine ?. It was mainly the fourth year pupils who suffered the worst casualties as we were in the rear of the train. Wayne Dandy was the only pupil to have passed his 11+ exam. His parents lived in Lees Street, approx 10 doors away from us. The news was broadcast on the television that all parents of pupils from Benson Road school should assemble at the school as there had been a train crash. The badly injured were taken to local hospitals and us lucky ones were brought home by coaches. I read the old newspaper reports recently when I went to the library in Birmingham. (I now live in Essex!). The head teacher at the time was Miss Legge. The pupils I remember from my class were Maxine and Julie Hurmson, Paul Brown and Lyn Bancroft. Our teacher was an American called Dennis Corrigan. His wife Fran taught the younger ones. I remember my childhood days with fondness. The neighbours were different then, in and out of each others homes, Gordon & Peggy Fisher,Mr & Mrs Hill and their brother Len, The Taylors, Brenda & Horace Badger, to name but a few. Elsie Anscombe had the shop at the bottom of Lees Street, and I do remember an outdoor over the road from our house. We used to go to the church at the top of the road for our Sunday school lessons! Our Mom, Kathleen worked as a store detective in town and used to run up Devonshire Street to catch the No96 bus outside the pub!
I hope that others from Lees Street will put on their own memories and trust that my recollection of the train crash helps! Keep up the good work, it is so lovely to read and remember the good old days.
Kind regards, Rosemary.

I read Rosemarie McPhersons recolections of Benson Road School & the train crash. I remember Rosemarie, as I had a crush on her (she never knew). I used to play with Rory Campbell, who lived opposite her. I too was on the train, originally in the last carriage before Mr Corrigan moved us up two carriages so we could get a second free ice cream  (Wayne was in one of the last cars when he died). I remember that on our return to Benson Road, we were met with the sight of hundreds of people filling the road, we were ushered into the school while people jostled us about, no doubt desperate to catch a glimps of their own children. I will always be grateful to Mr Corrigan for moving us up, there's no knowing what might have happened if he hadn't.. I don't remember many of the other kids names, except Paul Brown, Martin Faulkner, Mike Bowen, Henry Stone and Rory, (& Rosemarie of course),
 I'd love to know what became of them though,
 I ended up working in factories before being employed by mecca bin.
Mark Arnold   Email:,uk

LEES STREET 10/03/05

Wot a great site I was wondering if you know a family called bull (dad jim mom irenereene)?went to benson road school and lived in lees st, i have a large family of seven sisters and two brothers and have fond memory's of lees st  .

I remember the train crash my sister lived about four doors from benson road school and he helped with the flowers and collection for the tragedy. david bull   watchet@hotm

we are from lees st and devonshire ave has any one got fond memories of the rec our last name is bull larget sharon at the rec we are still going strong i went to benson road school i remember miss legge because she gave me the cane on many occasions,.good days .

looking to hear from lees st folk.

david bull &  sharon conlon

Hi again I am looking for any one who knows the Bull family from 22 Lees St also by mate Macca who lived in Benson Road and a girl we called "TEAPOT" also from Benson Rd.   Best wishes Dave Bull (Isle of Wight)


I have sent you some photos of people who lived in Winson Green in the 1950s I have some more if you want me to send them .
Best Wishes


Sheila and Betty Nicholas Reynolds Road Handsworth 1950s

Laurence Nicholas Stagg Party Winson Green 1950s

Lew Nicholas watching TV Leonard Street Winson Green 1950s

Sheila Merrals Wedding Day at Bishop Latimer Church Winson Green 1952

Lew , Alice and Betty Nicholas they lived in Leonard Street in the 1940s

Tony and Laurence Nicholas on Laurence's Wedding day they lived in Leonard Street Winson Green 1952

I lived in Leonard Street which ran from Bacchus Road to Berry Street and the rear entrance to Benson Road School then to Park Road opposite the "Old Engine" pub.
 Robert Buckley  Email:

I think this webite is wonderful, as I lived in Leonard street and attended Benson road school, I will be adding some of my stories to your site in the near future. my uncle Horace Garratt who I used to work for was a well known Booky and Coal Merchant, around the Soho Wharf.
Steve Garratt

LODGE ROAD 20/09/2012
In the early 1950 my mother Hilda Goodacre operated a small sweet shop at 105 Lodge road for about 10 years.
I was about 8years old and for the first 3 years boarded at the Blue Coat school and only came home for holidays. I later finished my education at Harboune Hill school as a day student travelling every day on the number 11 bus.
Unfortunately I did not have many friend in Lodge Road only Jean Unsworth from Don Street we used to cycle around the midlands on a Sunday some times, later I beleave she became a police lady. Our next door neighbour's James Hollaway and June Savoy, Mr and Mrs Brassington and daughter Pru owned the fruit and veg shop .
After leaving school started work in a small garage in Station road Harboune, with limited opportunities going applied and was excepted as a assisted immigrant and have lived in NZ since. I would be most interested to hear from any one on this subject. Regards Richard Goodacre

LODGE ROAD 16/11/011
I wish to put into print my Family History for future Generations to read about the Area that we all Lived In. Having been changed. IN 1870 the begining of the recolection of families becoming parts of the area called Birminham.My grandfather born of Country Farming Stock.decided to move to the new Future of areas becoming Cities. Arriving in 1890 to thhe the City of Birmingham and enlisting in the Police--Fire service and stationed in the Jewellery Quarter,he was responiable for the safety of Business and local residents. He married and three Sons of this family were born..the second son my father was born in Tenby Street Jewellry Quarter 1896. In the intervening years,World !. took place 1914--1918. and at the end of this Conflict my father married and move to a new address in lodge road All Saints-Winson Green were my Brother was born in 1920. All Saints Winson Green has a big part of History in my family Memorabilla with a Date
with adate not to be fogotten by the Nations Population conectining my eldest Brother being Born on the 11th November 1920. in Lodge road All Saints -Winson Green. the grandson of the local Policeman.and with all the family being attached to the local area Jewellery Trade. Helping to build Birmingham to a Industriious City.for the nation to appreciate. Yourself and - Maureen Contribiting with your web site Facilities.
Best Regards
Colin Mills  E-mail

LODGE ROAD 26/01/10
Just looked at the site again and realised another 7 years have passed since I put a little piece about myself working at Pearks on the Flat.
Does anyone else remember the coal barges off Lodge Road, we would go up on a Saturday morning, shovel the coal into steel wheeled barrows and wait for customers. They would pay 3d deposit on the barrow, we would wheel it to their home, shove it down the cellar and take the barrow back and keep the 3d for ourselves,then as we got older ( at least 11) to Scribans where we would wait outside for the bread-man, to see if they needed help. My best mate Kenneth Goodman from Whitmore Street, his sister Carol, David Evans moved from Park Road, to Icknield Street ( had a sister Maureen)
Now living in South West France ( didn't know anywhere outside 'Ockley once
Anyone remembers, photos etc please email
Kind Regards  Brian Moore


I was looking at the photo of the Don Hotel. Could it have originally been the Winson Green Tavern?(shown here on the corner of Don Street before demolition)  My grandmother, Gladys Gorman, was born in Birmingham in 1895. Her father, Albert Gorman, became the publican of the Winson Green Tavern in 1902. It was a two storey building on the corner of Lodge Rd and Don Street opposite the Birmingham Borough Lunatic Asylum. It was enclosed by a brick wall with broken glass cemented into the top of it. This was to prevent burglars coming into the small yard which consisted of a red brick washhouse and a tiny garden, the first one that the family had ever had. The family slept on the first floor next to a large clubroom which was used for meetings and parties. Don Street was used as a narrow short cut to Soho Station and consisted of a row of tiny three storey terrace houses which were rented to tenants for about three shillings and sixpence per week. The ground floor of these residences was a living room for the family. There was usually shining brass around the fireplace and three red stone steps to one side where the bath tub was placed. There was a bedroom on the first floor and another on the second but no separate bathroom or kitchen in the house. Outside, in the cobblestone or flagstone backyard was a communal row of toilets.
Rachel Fowkes became the washer woman at the Winson Green Tavern after her husband, William, died in 1905. She lived in one of the terrace houses in Don Street with her 5 children, Lily, Florry, Sophia, Alice and Alfred. As Alice and Alfie were still at school, Albert Gorman (my gt grandfather) gave them pocketmoney. Every Saturday morning the two children would arrive at the Tavern for their penny. Another woman who worked at the Tavern was a Mrs Smith sho had been born into an upper middle-class family but had eloped with her father’s coachman. They also lived in one of the small terrace houses but when her husband got drunk he would beat her and she often arrived at the tavern with her arms and face covered in bruises. She spoke beautifully and her house was tastefully furnished with a well laid table. However, she was sometimes frightened of her husband’s homecoming and on one occasion she asked for police protection.
Three sisters, Polly, Emily and Lizzy worked at the Tavern as maids. Emily was about 22 years and wore a blackbearded cape which made her look much older. Lizzy, the youngest sister, was kind and fun-loving and would take Albert’s three youngest children, Gladys, Winnie and Bert Gorman, to the Winson Green park of a summer evening to fly kites and play games. Occasionally, on a Saturday evening, she would take them to the park to see the Perriots, but, as the entrance fee was a penny or twopence, they usually watched them from outside the fence.
In 1904, while they were living in Lodge Road, the lines were laid for the first overhead electric cable tramcars.
The Gorman family immigrated to Australia in 1911.
Many thanks to Mary Henry  (Victoria 3421 Australia) for this family and Winson Green History


My name is Eric Taylor and 371 Lodge Road is where I use to live with my mom and dad Harry and Clara Taylor. A large rambling house that had once belonged to a doctor. If it were built to-day it would cost half a million quid. It had a large spiral staircase leading off a long hall which led to the three bedrooms plus a large old attic. At the rear of the house were more rooms where the hired help would have lived. Inside downstairs was a largish kitchen with a copper boiler with a small fireplace beneath it. I remember that quite well as most Monday's would be washing day. My Mom would let me have a day off from school so I could keep the fire beneath the copper going to boil the water then afterwards I would help out with the Maiding tub and then later would be turning the handle of the great old clanking iron wringer or mangle as we called it. Leading from the inside kitchen were more living quarters. A small living room which had its own staircase to three bedrooms Adjoining the living room was another long pantry type room which still had its original nameplate on the door which said "Surgery" Then followed two more large living rooms. The outside consisted of a large long garden. There was an outside toilet, a coal shed and a place to keep the dustbins or "Miskins" as we called them. I came to live here just after the war ended 1945/6 and believe me from what we had come from, this house was a palace. Whenever there was an election the Conservative Party would always rent our front room for its headquarters for the duration.
Together with my sister Doreen we attended All Saints Junior School under the vigilant eye of Miss Cole. Other teachers names I can remember were Miss Pierce, Miss Airey and a Mr. Taylor (His speciality was to give you a sharp smack across the face for your sins)
Lodge Road was a grand place to live way back in them times. There were four public houses within a hundred yards. "The Crown & Cushion" "The Hydraulic" "The All Saints Tavern" "The Abbey Vaults" On the corner was a Post Office. Across the road from the Post Office was a Bakelite manufacturer named "Harris's" I actually worked there for eighteen months moulding Bakelite iron handles and Castor wheels. The owner was a strict German named Carl Harris.
Finally you came to "The Flat" and what a place that was.(The Oxford Street of Birmingham) Nearly every shop you could wish for and two pubs "The Brown Lion" "The Bull's Head" which was run in my times by The Gaffer Harry Westwood. But just before we join "The Flat" I must mention just round the corner in Park Road "George Bartons the Pawnshop" I remember when I was in the RAF I'd hitch hike home from Aylesbury at the week-end and first thing I'd do was to pawn my watch for thirty bob. This gave me enough money for me and my girlfriend Sheila to have a good time while I was back in Brum. My mom would redeem it for me during the week, hand it back to me when I came home and then I'd pop it again and the cycle would begin again.
Now back to "The Flat" Yarnolds on the corner, The Sport & Play cycle shop where I bought my bicycle for five bob down and half a crown a week until it was paid for. A small chemist's (Franks or Izons comes to mind) and Chadwicks "The Bazaar" that name always fascinated me I half expected to be served by Aladdin. It sold everything imaginable, gas mantles, candles, soap, little silver kettle repair outfits on a card, bachelor buttons, blues for your washing or whitewashing, yes you name it they had it. Next up "Sutcliffes" the record shop, I practically lived there. When I got married Peter Sutcliffe the owner let me pick any album of my choice as a wedding gift. I went for Bill Haley & his Comets Stage Show. Further down were Butchers, Bakers (I've mentioned the candlestick makers)
and Spencers the greengrocers directly opposite his great shop was Harry Griffiths another shop exactly the same as Spencers. As a kid I imagined that whenever the two rivals met they'd have a great punch up. Then we had a Woolworths, Smiths the cake shop, The Pentacostal Church ran by two mesmeric sisters and on the corner another cycle shop "Centric". Opposite side of the road on the corner of Heaton Street was Boots the chemist's followed by Twists the grocers, Pope's the tailors, Playfairs the shoe shop, Freeman, Hardy & Willis the shoe shop and on the corner a type of outdoor called the Hole in the Wall (A great place at Christmas for your "Wine from the Wood" You could take your own bottles and they would fill them up with either sherry or port)
Most of my early childhood was spent in Lodge Road. On Guy Fawkes night we had bonfires in the middle of the road. It was as simple as that. Someone would set fire to an old armchair and the rest of the road would keep it going to well after closing time with their unwanted furniture. Nothing politically correct in them days. One memory I have is of sitting on the All Saints Taverns steps listening on the radio to Bruce Woodcock fight Joe Baksi for what I think was the Heavyweight title. Sad to say Bruce lost but I think he broke poor old Joe's jaw.
I met the girl who I married (Sheila Grady) She was my sisters best friend and lived in Abbey street. My first four jobs, after leaving Handsworth Road School, were Blackwells the builders (Icknield Street) Walsh & Walsh the Glass manufacturers (I was a trainee glass cutter) Rowley's on the Hollyhead Road near The Regal Cinema and C.W.Cheney's in Factory Road. I left Cheney's to volunteer for the RAF. After serving for five years I came back to Lodge Road and got a job at Rabones the tape manufacturer situated near Hockley Brook and the Tram/Bus Depot. Then I left and worked at Harris's Bakelite moulding firm then moved onto GKN in Heath Street Winson Green. Got married on December 22nd at All Saints Church. Finally after near enough twenty years I moved up to 134 Winson Green Road.
I have since then had many many more moves and jobs but now live happily with my wife in Worcester. Still a Brummie at heart and always will be.ERIC TAYLOR

LODGE ROAD 04/07/08
I was just looking at your site and was fascinated to see that people still comment about the old Winson Green I lived on Lodge Road until I was about 11 which is 36 yrs ago now but it was such a good and safe area to live in at the time my parents Pat and Tom both worked at the "Golden Eagle" pub at the top of Lodge Road and also the Devonshire arms I haven't been down that area for a long time but don't think I want to see how its changed . my dad also worked at All Saints Hospital in the kitchens .
Thank you for letting me just remember the good times

LODGE ROAD  20/02/08
Could help me find any old friends of my grandmother and grandfather they lived at 251 Lodge Road  their names are Mildred and Howard Lees. Anyone who knows that surname or Beryl and Jim Sheldon or any of the Lees's or Cogswells please get in touch. My grandmother used to do the provident. Many thanks replies to

LODGE ROAD 08/02/08
My name is Joanne Calder, I was born in the front bedroom of 126 Lodge Road in 1962; we left in 1970 when the houses were condemned. I have a sister Maxine and a brother Steven. My father is George Calder and he was brought up in the area too. His parents were Rose and Alexander Calder, he had a sister called Edie and they lived in the house next door. My mother also came from the area, she had a big family of 7 girls and 1 boy, her name was Marina Turner. Her mother was Amie Turner, sisters names were Ireen, Muriel, Betty, Georgina, Val and Yvonne. The 1 boy was called Arthur but he died as a boy, he was run over by a truck. It is my dads 80th birthday in July and I would love to hear from anyone who remembers any of my family members.
Joanne Greenhut nee Calder Email:

LODGE ROAD 10/12/07
Some photos of Kent Terrace (back of 43) Lodge Road where I was born and lived until 1968.
In the same terrace lived my Uncle Gordon and Aunty Pat and My Uncle George (pictured on the step of the first house) and Aunty Win. It might even be me sitting on the wall with my cap on!
It was between Scribbans and 'the flat'. I've got lots of lovely memories and I am going to record them for your site (carrying on the tradition of my dear old late mom, Pollie).
Regards  Tony Chew
see Foundry Road 25/01/05 and Stories page 31/12/08 for the contribution Tony and his mom Pollie have added to this web site.

Lodge Road between Scribbans and 'the flat'

Photo courtesy of Tony Chew

LODGE ROAD18/05/07

BARBERS SHOP on the corner of
Don St,& Lodge Road, this was a front room of a house, this was let to help pay the Rent aprox.9/7d a week, this was converted,to a barbers shop for Mr.Sunny Walters who was their untill the 1939-45.war.he enlisted in R.A.F. In the interving years, another man named Billy Brannan ployed his talents of short back and sides no nonsence hair styles.he move his talents to the Bacchus Road in between Shuffelbottoms Greengrocers Fruit&Veg shop,and the washing baths and now we come to the period beging in 1947.well documented Mr."Bert"Burton the barber. as in many comments on this Web-Site,have stories to tell,I myself have waited late on the night
to have my hair cut, but while waiting bert would ask you to sweep the floor,and one occasion he gave me a Clay Pipe,and I gave it to my grandad who never used it,but diplayed it on mantel shelf in their front room for years. In proceding years my hair was always was a problem,and I asked if he would fix it, he said you have a double crown and that I would be bald at 25.I asked could he stop it,he pointed to his own head, Bald as Badger, great man of many years. Could remember him saying on a Friday anything for the weekend sir.

The Second Barber on the corner Foundry road next to Dolmans Garage named Tommy Smith, this man was disabled with one leg shorter than the other, he was fitted with a built up shoe, this caused him to limp very badly,and I probably was more aware than other people because he lived in Talbot Street close to my
Grandparents, he also carried out house vists, from personal experience, my father always called for him, or his brother George to our house, my dad was self-conscious because he was bald, they trimed his hair in our front room. When Tommy retired, his brother George carried on the business.
Colin Mills E-mail

LODGE ROAD 05/05/07    A Walk down the length of the road

Lodge Road from Bannister & Thatcher chemists,  traveling down hill, notable land marks, first Dr,McKinnon, Mr.Lewis corner shop with Victor Road,call in for sweets,and a penny pull on the fruit machine,next stop the Rectory with large lawns in front,later to become the home for ex-war surplus materials,the name was Watton & Bussells later,known as Bushells.the next outstanding land mark the GOLDEN EAGLE managed by Mr& Mrs Short, previous of the Rising Sun Talbot Sreet. Next corners of Bacchus Road,Ronnie Swain garage otherside Boot Shoe repair shop.still going down the hill.the steps and the King Arms Pub. the next shop was my favorite,Miss Francis sweet shop,she was a lovely Lady that always gave good measure for your pennies,when sweets were on ration,she would occasional give you some extra. the next shop was a duel premises first a shoe repairs named Phillphs,and the became , Family Butchers Chris Featherstone,next was also a duel shop first a Fish & Chips named Hattons, changed in Fruit & Veg shop called Armstrongs previous,near the FLAT. Then arrive at the double named Public House the WINSON GREEN TAVERN. known local as the: DON :opposite the then famous the All Saints Mental Hospital. On the other corner the Hairdressing Saloon,  first owned by Sunny Walters later Bert the Barber.the Newsagents shop was
named broomhead, whose daughter married Stanley Manison,their son attened H.N.R.S at the same period as myself next Barretts Greengrocer & Fruits. The next building,was the most famous for bread this was called MOTHERS PRIDE entrance to their bakery into Talbot St.: story attached to bakery later : continuing down in the dip,builder on corner,next came Allens Shoe Repairs,and the charging of radio acumalators.further along
Mrs Sunny Walters Ladies Hairdressing,now we are on the flat part of Lodge Road. We arrive at the third Pub in the road called the DEVONSHIRE ARMS situated between Musgrave Rd and Devonshire Street.the next shop was a family from Talbot St.named Mr&Mrs Manley Greengrocers as every were in the area came the Fish & Chip shop called Coopers,followed by Grocer Shop called Luckings he sold broken biscuits to us children 2d a bag.
Up hill, May Westwood the newsagents shop very tall lady about 6.2 then the corner of Lodge rd / Lees st. the animal pet,and corn shop,named Morris.later Guest & Sons transport carriers of HEINZ 57.brookfield road.
the opposite side the Congreational church,calledthe Institute,carrying high up hill the outdoor licence premises at the corner Norton sreet. The next was a private house/come Doctors.
Now we are approaching the working area of the road.Walsh & Walsh. manufactures of fine Crystal glass,and Griffiths pattern and design. This site taken over by the FORD MOTOR COMPANY of America for the secret development of their first diesel engine into a vehicle called the ThamesTrader.they came to midlands for the
technology and expertise of the British motor the Canal that played a part of Birmingham water ways,followed by Timber Merchant Tingates,and oppsite the British Oxygen Company. Going down hill towards the area known as the Flat.passing Scribbons Bakery on the way down we arrived at another section of further history.
The old saying keep browesing,and keep writing
Magnificent Web site thanks Ted.
Colin Mills E-mail

LODGE ROAD 11/08/07
In early years of youth,the younger generation joined rival organizations Boys Brigade,Scouts, Church Army Brigade. I at the age of 12years enlisted in the 14,th Boys Brigade at the Intstitute Lodge Road the Captain
Mr Cane,1st Officer Mr Williams,Sgts Alan Boswell Alan Lewiss, these dedicate personnal helped to mould our personality and future.
One summer the 14th Company departed for 2weeks Holiday Camping Excise to Blackwell Cottage on the River Severn at Arley.Nr Bridgenorth. Having set up the tents,and having a meal,army style,we all explored the local country side, night time arrived time for bed,some slept others laughing and joking about,and suddenly we heard a terrific splash in the river,we jumped up and looked to see where the noise had come from and then we observed a lad name Tommy Hayes had sleept walk into the river,we retrived out and all had a good laugh.
Regards Colin Mills E-mail

LODGE ROAD (Walsh Walsh) 21/02/05

Thanks to John Houghton
for all the "Walsh Walsh" material

LODGE ROAD 21/03/07
Can anyone remember Taylor family,149 Lodge Rd or Reynolds family,154 Lodge Rd.
would love to hear.Val Email:

LODGE ROAD 26/02/07
My grandfather, Thomas Philpotts ran pub called the Winson Green Tavern in Lodge Rd, Winson Green. I would love to come back to this website and know it still exists, if not what happen to it.
Tracy Simmons  Email:

LODGE ROAD 29/04/06
Up until 1964 the Joesbury's lived at 197 Lodge Road Albert& Ginny(Joan) With 6 children Brian,John,George,(me)eric,joan,(my sister)and Peter. This site has pulled at the memory strings keep up the good work. I remember being in the b'ham mail in the early 50's for playing snowballs in the hot summer. My father had come back from scotland in his truck and picked up a teachest full of snow what fun was had.
George Joesbury  
Letter to George Josebery from Colin Mills 17/09/07
(you gave us an incorrect email address so Colin was unable to contact you in the normall way, Ted).
Albert, your father (better know as jazz band) was a friend of our family, my brothers and local lads formed a musical band,your father being not a instrumentalist became the manager and the band was named Jazzer & the Jazzmen,that how he recivied his nickname.
Now the story begins,your father was a decorater and he could paperhang a ceiling in 1/2 hour using only household broom.having completing that he would say I am just poping home to see if the children were ok,he never came back,you lads must have played him up. I used to go out with your dad on his jobs,I was
only aged 9years old,and my job was to paste the paper and hand to him,I was amazed when he tore
the paper when hanging and I asked why do that and the answer,never cut a straight line,its
hard to match.Transport in those days was a hand cart,that I helped to push.
Your dad was a great romancer when visting our house,he would talk to my dad about his transport company
and my dad would ask him for a job, and his reply have no vacanies a the moment, I waiting for a new fleet of lorrys to be deliverd At some time later I believe he work for his brother,visting Fairs around the country and supply them with toys. I belive he had a younger brother a decorater the word breeze in your heading,anything connected to dennis breeze. Regards Colin mills. Colin Mills E-mail

LODGE ROAD 11/03/04
I am researching the Elliott family who lived at 355 Lodge Road in 1891.Kingswood Lapworth and Hockley are the areas I have. John Henry a signalman died 1909 and his wife Sarah Ann a midwife died 1903. Just wondered if you could help point me in the right direction to get more information on this family.
June  Email:

LODGE ROAD 16/01/04
Comments: Thank you for such wonderful memories on Winson Green
Does any one remember my late husband John Bridges of.329.Lodge.Rd
Email: jebednatiscalico. uk Edna. Bridges

Do you have anything on the Ford Motor Company's facility that was in Lodge Road until around the early sixties?  I would appreciate any help.
Barry Walker   Email:??????????????????   (CAN YOU HELP BARRY ? IF SO CAN WE HAVE A COPY PLEASE)
Barry must have changed his email address, please see below a reply from Ron Davies. 22/12/2011
I read with interest your post on the Winson Green site about FMC presence in Birmingham.
I wonder if you have been successful in gathering any information about the Research Centre because I have been trying for some time now.
I was a FMC engineering student in the mid 60’s and came to Birmingham from Essex to finalise my apprenticeship at Lodge Road. Around 1966 I was offered a job as a Research Engineer in the Electronics Lab. I stayed at Lodge Road until Fords built a new Research Centre at Dunton in Essex when I moved back to where I originated. But did I miss Birmingham! Many of the Engineers relocated to Essex but a lot stayed in the Midlands finding employment in other industries. Some of those that relocated found there way back to the Midlands eventually.
I have some very happy memories of my relatively short employment at Lodge Road although things are getting a little hazy now but I would be quite happy to try to dig into the brain cells while I still have some left!
Ron Davis
More from Ron I don’t suppose many people will remember the FMC site which is a pity because it was where the good old Ford Anglia was designed and developed – before my time there though. It was my first car. It cost £460 brand new including the heater which was an optional extra. I was very proud of it. I bought it whilst still a student and it took three years to pay off the loan.
When I first arrived in Birmingham, parts were like a battleground as redevelopment was in full swing but I don’t think that the Winson Green area was affected much at that time. Some of the time I lived off of Five Ways, Hagley Road which is unfortunately completely unrecognisable to me now.

Lodge Rd  ( Winson Green Tavern )  I would love to come back to this website and know it still exists, if not what happen to it. Tracy Simmons  Email:

With reference to Tracy Simmons enquiry about The Winson Green Tavern, I think this was the pub on
the corner of Don Street and Lodge Road. I lived 3 doors up from the pub from 1945-1958 and it was
always known as The Don, but I don't think that was its official name. Since it's so long ago I would like
someone to confirm my recollections. My Grandmother, Ada Holloway, regularly used the pub and I recall
her hiring a Midland Red coach to take us on a ' mystery tour ' from The Don. The mystery place turned
out to be Evesham. One evening I had to collect my dog ' Prince ' from outside the pub to stop him howling
since he was acting as the accompaniment to a mouth organ player.
I think the premises must be demolished by now.
Happy days James Holloway
KELLY'S Directory 1960 names the pub on the corner of Lodge Road and Don Street as the
 "Winson Green Tavern" Ted Rudge 28/02/07

Lodge Road 03/04/07

     The photograph looking down Lodge Road is very evocative for me since the photographer is standing outside the house where i was born in 1945 and still living there when it was taken. It's surprising that an ordinary photograph of a very small part of Winson Green can provoke such detailed memories and feelings.
      I've estimated the date as 1952/53 based on the fact that the trams stopped running on 30/3/1947 but the tramway was left in situ several years after the cessation of services. I can remember the noise from the pneumatic drills as the old steel tracks were recovered for scrap. I can't recall whether the sets of cobble stones the tracks were laid in were taken up or not but the ragged edged partial re-surfacing of the centre of the road was to cover the work done. I hoped a steam driven roller would be used but it turned out to be diesel engined. The lack of traffic suggests it is the early 1950's, if you add 5 years on you would certainly have seen some cars in the road by then.
     The first shop you see is the greengrocers run by an elderly couple named Armstrong. Their name has been painted on the window by a sign writer between the word fruiterer and the advert for Benedicts peas. Below the window it shows that Slim Whitman is appearing at the Hippodrome.
     The Don is next, with the sign on the first floor showing that it is an Ansells house called the Winson Green Tavern. There is another entrance on corner with Don Street and an outdoor around the corner.
     The shop with the woman walking past is 'Bert ' the barbers, I believe this was a nickname since I think his surname was Burton. I had my first professional haircut there and remember being scared of being in such an unknown environment. I was about 3 three years old at the time. Lacking in height because of my age I had to sit on a wooden plank which rested on the arms of the chair.
     Next but one to the barbers is a newsagents run by the Manisons with the usual enamel signs for St. Julien pipe tobacco, Players Weight and Capstan cigarettes
adorning the front. I remember their son, who was some years older than me, riding his bycycle too fast on the bend outside our house then falling off injuring himself on the loose gravel. My dad gave him first aid in our house since he was in the St. Johns Ambulance working from railway locomotive depot at Tyseley.
     You can see that the road is still lit by gas light,  the lamposts being cleaned and maintained by a man carrying his ladder and tools along the road when necessary. The lamposts had automatic timers which switched them on and off each day.
     Out of shot is my house no. 204 which lay between 2 other shops not in the photograph. The shop between my house and the greengrocers is a butchers which was run by Chris Featherstone and as is usual for that trade had plenty to say to the housewives who were his customers. On the other side of my house is a confectioners run by Miss Francis who in the parlance of the day was a maiden lady and resided in Wattville Road, Handsworth. She kept an amazing display of English flowers during the summer in her back garden. After her retirement a family called Smith took over for a short time, all that I can remember about them is a whole display of fireworks accidentally and simultaneously exploding in the garden one bonfire

James Holloway  Email;

Having read your tex regarding your grandmother, she lived in the houses between the garage corner
bacchus road and the golden eagle pub,the tennants were name Short. you stated that you lived in house three doors from the Don.the shop next to the pub was a greencrocer named armsrongs,next shop butcher Chris Featherstone.then we come to your Cottage,where I belive John lived,the other son married Edna Savery,who was a great friend of my sister, her mother was also my mothers best friend. next to where you lived was Miss Francis sweet shop always looking in the shop window to see the sweets afford to buy, a lovely lady and allways kind to us children. Then we came to the Saverys Family two big steps to enter their home. from there on everthing up hill,short cut toBacchus road, I also Ada was memeber of some service. being born in Don Street could write a book of the area. hope that enlightens you of the Holloways true Brummie and proud to be called one/
Colin mills
Chelmsley Wood

LODGE ROAD  03/10/04

Can anyone help with pic's of Lodge Road, I used to live at 197 in 1964 to 1971

 then 90 lodge rd 1971 to 2 facing the british oxygen.

195 lodge rd lived elsie west and nellie fisher,

196 leonard davis,197 the cotons,198 ada manison, 199,leonard and doris walton.200 elsie spinks,201 william and laura bayliss,202 ernest, nellie and eric dalton.

im sure that the papershop was called daltons, in don st i remember living at n0 24 were the mills , fred.georgina,frank,collin and joan.

at n0 22 lived may cartwright. also can anyone help with pics of devonshire st grandparents lived at n0 40 lionel and leah coton, sons george, arthur,john,dennis and david ,lionel and leah also lived at 142 devonshire st in 1927.he was a coleman apparently killed a child by accident the child climbed on the back of his cart slipped off an/d went under the wheels, so the story goes.they also had a fruit /shop in devonshire st . can any one fill in any gaps any stories or pic's of these places. i went to benson rd sch;1964 i remembeer a strict teacher i think her name was mrs.mullard also a mate at the time was trevor green who lived in don st.there was a micheal sheppard and his brother at the school can anyone remember the boy who drowned in winson green lake,1964 to perhaps 69 i think his name was lesley . also a lesley cole used to live at the top end of lodge rd . my father arthur coton attended benson rd sch; and so did his brothers john,george,dennis and david they also attended handsworth new road does any one remember them.any pic's would be appreciated.

malcolm coton  email:

My grandparents ran the fish and chip shop in Lodge Road, near the Devon Pub (Devonshire Arms), their names were Lottie and George Cooper, Gran ran the shop after my Grandad died in 1963 for a little while longer, I think I have a photo of the shop front, I will look for it and pass it on. P.I.Stewart  03/11/02


MARKBY ROAD 14/06/2015
I've enjoyed reading your site
My father grew up in Markby Road, Winson Green and I was born at Dudley Road Hospital.
I hope you can help me do some research into a story into some history
My father was a member of the Birmingham football Youth/reserve teams ( I don't think they used city in 1939)
The story is that he and the Birmingham reserve team all went and enlisted at the same time for world war 2
Just wondering if you any information that could help me in researching this
Marjory and Roy Griffiths


MARKBY ROAD 01/03/09
I have just been looking at the photos of Winson Green.
My father was born in Wellington Street and as a child I visited my relatives and grandmother still in the same house at No.27 this was until the late 50s. My grandmother was the cleaner at the Winson Green Picture House in the 40s and my mother and aunts used to sell chocolates in there during the late 20s & early 30s. They were supplied with their chocolates from Hydes shop which was opposite the gates of the prison across the road from what I remember as a child was a free nights lodging house for down & outs.
The first place I lived as a month old child was in Markby Road but then we moved to Great Barr where I lived until 1960 when I moved to Kent. Throughout my childhood I spent at least one day a week at the Green and and used to play down the black patch park. My first job was at Stevensons Boxmakers in Anne Road. This was in 1951 &1952.
I havn't been back since 1960 I cannot believe what has happend to B'ham and the surrounding area since I left.
I will inform my daughter of your site as she is keen on geneology and likes to see photos of where her family. came from.
Regards  Terry Blackwell aged 72

MARKBY ROAD 19/10/08
Hi Ted, your site brought back a lot of memories for me. I wonder if anyone could help me. I am looking for my father, my parents split up when I was very young. My father lived in Villiers Street with his family during his late teens. Then moved to Markby road, where he remarried. I believe his family owned a shop at the bottom of Markby Rd. He was of Asian decent and known as Johnny. I believe his real name to be Major Singh. I know that he worked for British Steel until closing, this is the last place I had as contact. Thank you. Fingers crossed.

MARKBY ROAD 23/01/08

On the right is Jeffrey Ince who was tragically killed serving in Aden. On the left Tommy Griffiths? who lived on Lodge Road nr Bacchus Road. John Lowe

MARKBY ROAD  18/08/05
Hello: my name is Joan Freeman (Reeves) I used to live at 23 Markby Road Winson Green I went to Foundry
Road School and Handsworth New Road, I would like to find Betty Rose she use to live with her
aunty and uncle I also think she married a doctor,also I would like to find Iris Feeney she lived in Markby Rd
if anyone can help me I would appreciate it
Thank you   Joan Freeman (Reeves)

MARKBY ROAD  16/11/04

The attached photograph is from
Coronation day 1953 in Markby Road,
it was the Streets beauty contest and the photo was taken outside our house which was No 67.
Being only eight years old at the time l can really only recognise one of the contestants, this being Sylvia Nichols who was on the extreme right of the line up and lived three doors down at No 61. She and her husband had two daughters but unfortunately l really cannot recall their names, however maybe if they or anyone else from the Road see this old photo it may be of interest and maybe names can be put to the beauties, incidentally l have no idea who won either as Mr Matthews the coalman from across the Road was giving all us kids a tour of the streets on the back of his lorry and that was the thrill of the day, can you imagine that happening now with todays H&S regulations plus litigation if one of the kids got dirty or sustained a scratch.
from Peter Ellis                            

MARKBY ROAD  14/06/03
1977 -1980 Although i lived in Windmill Lane Smethwick,my boyfriend at the time lived in Markby Road Winson Green, his parents were called wilf and Doreen Jones and he had a brother Andrew (who used to do the disco at merryhill social club,his wife was called Trish) his sister was called Lynn and was married to Pat and they had 4 children I think.Trevors nan, a nice old lady called Mariah lived in Kitchener Street, I can still recall her little house and how it appeared dark which I think was due to the fact that there was kind of bank which overshadowed her house, it may have been the railway.Doreen and Wilf used to go to dancing on thursday evening at the tower ballroom and I recall she always wore a long dress to dance in.There was a shop on the corner of Markby Road which I believe sold grocery, etc. I can remember spending many a cold night walking through Black Patch on my way home.    Lynsey

Lived at Markby Road and at the other end I think it was called Benson Rd. There was a public baths. Also a coal yard were I pulled many a barrow full of coal with the little wheels, that was one of my many jobs on a Saturday.
I Went to Foundry Rd School and Handsworth New Road School. We used to have our dinner in  the school holiday there as well.
Q.What do they use Handsworth New Rd School for now?.by Reg Reeves
A.The old Handsworth New Road School Building is currently used as some kind of center where people meet.



My  father Arthur Thorp was born 1903 I think he lived at 5 Moilliett Street and 8/189 Icknieldport Rd Ladywood, he was a window cleaner for Ladywood and Winson Green.  I have a great photo of him changing or lighting the Sreet Lamps, up a ladder. His Parents and siblings also lived in and around Icknield Port Rd (big family I believe)...sorry not much more information but I would love to hear from anyone who knew him or has heard of him.
Regards Elaine - Australia

Still enjoying your web site. I am trying to locate some old photos of Moilliett St. Winson Green, preferably from the late 30's through to the 60's.
Also if there is anyone who lived there during those early days and also has some old photos, I would love to hear from you, so please get in touch.
With many thanks.
Barbara Collins nee. Kalmarczie

Just to say how great your web page site is. I was born at 122 Molliett street on 3rd March 1950 and I also lived from about 6months old at My aunt Elsie and uncle Bill's house their surname was Scott at 5 Molliett Street till 1955 then we moved to my parents first house in the first ever block of flats in Birmingham Home Towers in Nechells Green.
My Grandfather was Frank Snookes my Grandmother was Elizabeth Snookes nee Crump from All Saints area, my dad was Frank Robert Snookes and he married my mom Patricia O'grady who he met in Richmond North Yorkshire when doing National Service with the Welsh Regiment based at Catterick in 1948. Aunt Elsie and Uncle Bill also owned a greengrocers in Heath Street their surname was Scott and I used to help him push the handcart around and deliver greengrocery.  Robert Snookes

I wonder does anyone remember a prisoner escaping from Winson Green Prison, in the late 40's? We lived in Moilliett Street and at the end of our garden was a very high wall and on the other side was Loons the
dairy... One night my mother went out, to the outside toilet, and she came running back into the house saying it looked like there was a crocodile on top of the wall.. As it was quite dark she could just see the outline of this 'crocodile'.. The police were called and the 'crocodile' turned out to be an escaped prisoner laying on top of the
wall.. He was captured on the other side of the wall in the dairy...has anyone got any memories of that?
Still enjoying your site, check every day for new stories.
Thanks...Barbara Collins

Hi, I have just come across your website and am so pleased with it, I have it as one of my favourites so that I can click onto it easily. It is great to read all about the area where I was born being a true Brummy.... Born in Dudley Road Hospital and lived in Moilliett Street 1938 to 1960. Would love to see some photos of Moilliett Street if anyone has any. Also would like to hear from anyone who lived there during those years. Thanks, Brilliant site......Barbara Collins nee Kalmarczie



I lived at number 7 Molliett Street  from 1963 till about 1968/9 I have 4 children Steven and the twins and maggie.. my x husband was name George... Ilived next door to Mary she had 2 boys and 2 girls if any one knows me email me on  thank you Maureen Harwood



This photograph is of the Womens Guild trip to Tewkesbury 1923. My Great Grandmother Alice Roberts is seventh from the left in the light suit. The family were living at 7 Molliett Street at the time so I assume it was taken in that area. Does anyone recognize the houses in the back ground or any of the people.
Ian Roberts Email:

This is a great site. My old street (Molliett St) has long gone , but its nice to read about other people's lives. I lived in Woodbine Villas. My mates were Gary & Malcolm Jordan, Tony Evans, Rob Etheridge, Matab Ulla. I now collect any old bottles and brewery stuff from Brum and especially Winson Green. If you knew me or have items that you wish to sell then please get in touch!! Billy Myles  Email:

 I used to  live in Moilliet St in Rutland Square I remember Frances very well . They were very young when our family left the Square. I remember it well there was the Lawrences Eve Harmer and her family we lived next door to the Gbbs family Jean was my best mate we went every were together she married Fred and I married Bernard . Happy days I must say living in the yard we all loved it there . Regards Doreen
Doreen Adams nee Round Email: doreenadams

I came across your website while researching my family history.
Both of my fathers parents lived around Winson Green. My Great Grandfather and grandmother were
William and Alice Roberts who lived at 7 Molliett St.  He worked for Birmingham Council road repairs for 43 years. He died in 1950. They had two children William and Nellie (later Slack). William married my Grandmother Jessie Gill in 1923 and she lived at 49 Cuthbert Road. My grandmother told me about her grandfather Boaz Bloomer who was found in the canal in Winson Green after falling in on his way home to Preston Road. If there are any relatives of William and Alice Roberts I would love to hear from them. Many thanks  Ian Roberts
E-mail Address

Im trying contacet a family name McKeon.
Tracey McKeon lived at 110 Molliett Street. her parents name are Brenda and Anthony McKeon. she has a older sister and a younger brother.
Tracey went to City Road infants school 1965.left in 1972. if any one can help me plase contact me on 07791110204 or email me please. thank you . Beverley Crum   Email:


I wonder if you can help me. my nan Lucy Taylor and her husband William lived in Molliett street until the early 60's, they had 9 children Jessie, Reggie, Dorothy who married and had 2 children Clifford Kitchener Armstrong and Stephen Armstrong, Mary, Margaret who married Georgie Andrews and had 2 children called Johnny and Christine ,Christopher, Patricia, Pearl who married Fank Jones fromAberdeen Street, and my mum June Taylor who married Peter Robbins whose parents owned Victoria Bakeries. can anyone who remembers anyone listed please get in touch or if indeed related. to       tabatha    Email

Did you know that Godfery Rudge and I are blood brothers?
When we were kids we had been to the Saturday crush at the Grove cinema and the weekly serial was the Lone Ranger and Tonto, in the film they cut their wrists and held them together so the blood would mix,  so becoming blood brothers. Godfery and I did the same when we got home, seemed a good idea at the time.
Alan Miles  Email

I came across your site by accident and am I glad I did because the photographs published on the pubs link showing the Bellefield show my grandfather Alf Bayley in at least 2 photos and maybe in a third. My first few years were spent at 134 Molliett St, George and Doris Usher. I am researching the Bayley family and therefore if anyone can give me any info I really would appreciate it.  Gloria Wilkins

My mom and dad lived with my grandparents Leslie and Elsie Lawrence  at 3 Rutland Square, Moilliett St (my elder sister used to play with June & Frances Rudge who lived opposite). Later  in 1953-1954 my parents were issued with a cottage the address was 5 back of 513 (5 / 513) Dudley Road. They got the cottage to rent because my dad worked at Mitchells and Butlers at the time.I believe the cottages were owned by Mitchells and Butlers.
My mom has been trying to find a photo of these cottages for many years, also rutland square without success, I was wondering if you would know of any places I could try, as i would dearly love to find one for her because my dad sadley died in November 2003 and she keeps recalling the first house they had together.If you can help I would be so gratefull,if not,thank you for your time anyway. regards Annette Raines

The Grove cinema was No 473 the last Birmingham address on Dudley Road.
No 513 would have been one of the houses opposite Mitchell and Butlers on the hill that went up towards Cape Hill the  address  being in Smethwick.


Would it be possible to trace old friends from Moillliet St in the 1960s
 Graham Moore   Email:



I have just revisited this site after speaking to Graham Moore, I would like to hear from anyone who lived in Molliett Street especially Rutland Square also
anyone who went to City Road School (not quite Winson Green I know)in the 60's
Frances Dale (nee Rudge)Email:


MURDOCK ROAD  31/01/2014
(this road is just inside Smetwick but near enough to include in our site)

Could you help me, I am putting together a memory book for my dad for his 60th birthday. I am finding it terribly difficult to locate various houses and schools as it seems now they no longer exist and really hoped someone out there could help me to find a few pieces to my missing pages for my dads book.
This is the info im searching for .
My dad and his family whom were - mom margaret johnson, dad earnest stokes children - robert,keith,philip,christine,dawn,elizabeth and gail they all lived at 5 murdock road smethwick. i was hoping someone may have a photograph of the street or the houses as they were back in the 1950's.
Im also interested in any photographs of foundry lane primary/infants school in the 1960's. and  handsworth new road secondary around 1965 also any photographs or info about soho house would be much appreciated, as i believe it was knocked down and my parents lived here during the 1970's.                                                                If you have any info at all id greatly appreciate it
Thanks ever so much

( this road is just inside Smetwick but near enough to include in our site)
Just a bit of information  10/02/07
My name is Colin Vaughan , I lived at 28 Murdock Road from February 1940 till I went into the armed forces in 1958, my families names were Charles and Blodwen Vaughan my sisters names were  Audrey and Olive my brothers names were Lesley , Albert and  Howard Blodwen was my stepmother my real mothers name was Hilda Mary, we regularly went to Black Patch Park to play when we were kids,  my friends that I grew up with were David, Billy & Margaret Vincent  they also had  another brothers and sisters I think their names were Frank & Doris but I cannot recall the other names , their dad was a very talented pianist at least we all thought so, he used to play the piano at all the family parties that we had , even though times were hard and goodies were all in short supply.
At Number 29 lived Mr Harry Bluck the Air Raid Warden, I can remember my dad carrying me through the sandbags into the Air Raid Shelters which were actually built on the road in front of the houses where I lived.
Avery's Scale Factory was just around the corner on Soho Foundry Lane opposite the Soho Foundry Tavern during the war they made Ammunitions for the war effort.
Our next door neighbours at no. 27 was the State family , her son Les was a bit of a boxer I did hear that he was the Midlands Middle Weight Champion but I don't know for sure.
At No. 30  lived the Aston's who seemed to be quite posh but they were a lovely family, next door to them lived the Walters, Mr Walters was a long distance lorry driver and he also worked for Nashes Coaches & Glider ways, he used to park them in our road after the Air Raid shelters were taken down.
At No. 32 was the Walls family and at No. 33 after the entry was Joyce's Sweet Shop, we used to take our fathers coupons to get  a few sweets or toffees an Kaylie ( not sure of the spelling) it was great.
Down on the corner was Payne's Butchers it was rumoured that Old Ted Payne had a few favourite women who were regularly given extra rations of meat, they said that he owned most of the shops on Soho Foundry lane, the Old cook Shop and Mrs Simmons the second hand Comic Shop where you could buy a comic for one halfpenny or change two for one, we never thought much about it at the time but it was magical times.
There was also Mrs Pools Pop Shop that we used to go to buy a glass of Tizer for a penny, there was also littler's Café run by Kath or Cath. Back up Murdock Road next to the café was the Butler Family then two doors up was the Read's I knew terry and Dougy, next to them was the Jelley's with their daughters Valerie, Veronica, Gloria and Susan a bit further up was the Shepherds and also old Vic Brookes who rented the Railway Bank, he kept pigs and used to go all over our area collecting the waste food which he then boiled and fed to his pigs. Then a couple of doors up was Lenny Webb who used to sell logs from a pony and trap, at the top of Murdock Road was a dirt path called The Wickett, this started at the railway bridge in Victoria Street which linked with Murdock Road, Avery Road then went all the way to the canal behind Avery's and the railway lines.
My stepmother Blodwen (formerly Hawkins from South Wales) use to be the cleaner at the Soho Foundry Tavern from about 1954 to the mid 1970's when she returned to Wales, she was very well known and used to sit in the passage of the tavern drinking vast amounts of Brown Ale or Guinness with all the other old dears.  If you wish to contact me please do this via my email which is: -cg.vaughan@blueyonder
or my son's address which is

Charles,Blodwyn&Sheila                                  Blodwyn                       Colin & Blodwyn                            

Thank you, I've just spent a very enjoyable morning looking over the website and still haven't covered the whole site. A friend (Cherry Cheshire) who lives in Birmingham and used to live in Eva Road stumbled on the website and told me about it and was sure I would enjoy it. I live in Surrey so haven't been to the Black Patch area for years. I used to live at 8 Murdock Road untill 1970 with my parents Pat(Gladis) and Ernie Jelley and three sisters Valerie, Veronica and Gloria and also my brother Gary. My grandparents the Corbetts used to live at 36 Murdock Road I also spent many happy times playing on the swings and rolling down the banks in Black Patch Park with my sisters. If any one remembers us please get in touch and I will pass on any messages to the rest of my family. Sue Aslan nee Jelley  Email:


MUSGRAVE ROAD 14/03/2012
I would like to hear from anyone who remembers the Hartles family off 46 Musgrave Rd we lived there from the 40's to the early 80's.I also noticed someone talking about the little shop run by a lady who had some fingers missing,that was my cousin Floss Dartnell.
Thanks again for a great site.
Dave  Mr D V Hartles


MUSGRAVE ROAD 17/05/2011
Photo below is Park Road the road on the right is Musgrave Road with St Chrysostoms on it's corner.

have just found your website how amazing.
I was born in Musgrave Road in Hockley the end nearest to Park Road up the entry opposite the gates of the woodyard "Oh so many memories" playing under the bridge in the rain, going to the rec where the parkie would fetch us in if the sirens from All Saints went off. It made me think and I remembered nearly all the neighbours.The shop at the bottom on Park Road run by an elderly lady, lovely woman.
I was baptised at St Chrysostoms Church and went to Sunday School there, Benson Road and Handsworth New Road were my schools.
My Grandmother lived in Wharf Street and Grandad worked on the Wharf my Mother worked at McDougalls in Norton St and so did I for a while
We were never bored always something to do and does anyone remember an old man that used to sit on the picture house steps on Soho Road? or Grove Lane Swimming Baths and Handsworth Park after. GREAT.
The photo of the flat in the book Hockley to Brookfields shows an Ice cream parlour come cafe my sister and her husband bought and ran the cafe in late sixties they had their daughter there,
They also had a cafe right opposite Averys Foundry in Foundry Lane next to the pub and the fruit shop on on the other side of the road their name was Grant.
My Father being Irish "Spud Murphy" went into most pubs in and around Hockley including The Mint in Park Road and The Railway he had his photo take outside the Warstone Lane Pub, dad, myself and my brother worked for Billy Bulpitt at Swan Brand on Spring Hill.
My Grandmother who lived in Wharf Street brought three kids up on her own in that little house when her husband died in 1927 she lived there till her death in 1965. She had her own seat in the Mint Pub and god help anyone who sat there.
When I find the photos I will send them to you and you can decide whether to put them on the site which is absolutely GREAT!  Thank you for such a lovely website


Maureen Harwood and Maggie her sister outside Musgrave Road Recreation Ground
(the Rec) in the 1950s and a photo of the modernised Rec taken in 2009

I just wanted to say thanks to this website,  it has helped inspire my dad to remember memories from his past.
His name Is Brian Dainty born in 1942 at 179 Musgrave Road, where he lived with his Mom, Dad , his sister Margret, and his twin brother James and John Dainty. Joseph Dainty ran a factory making file's called Robinson Charles & Sons. I am lead to believe that this was then sold to a company called Toogood's, about 1950. The family then moved to Douglas Road Handsworth, my farther also went Benson Road School. I would to love to hear from any one who remembers my relatives, so i can pass on any comments, or stories. Also does any one out there have any pictures of Robinson's or Toogoods, I would love to see them.
Regards Chris Dainty

Winson Green District for the first time, has been reconized with its New Park facilities in the area Musgrove Park & Allsaints Park lifting this run down housing estate. something the regeration programe the city can be proud of. The Rec in Musgrave Road was a part of our youth no green grass to play on,the surface was of tarmac area were Boys&Girls played games. there are now two hard court play areas and childrens apparatus, with beutiful mixture of trees,with a view to admire after bygone days.
Colin Mills

I found your website the other day, really is a wonderfull opportunity to go down memory lane. My mother & father lived at 32 Musgrave Road,  I was born in 1944, moveing to Hall Green around 1962. I travelled back to friends then, but over the years lost contact with many. Haveing married in 1968 & shortly after moveing to south Derbyshire, I now live a lot af the time in south west Cork. Their were friends of my mum & dad "Logues" who ran a small furniture shop on Bachus Road near the butchers were one of my friends Morris Rowlands worked with Grason, from leaving school, we used to use the Mint pub in Park Road. I went to St Patricks Shool were I am afraid I have lost all contact with school chums.
If any one does remember our family The Fagans, I would love to here from them.
Des Fagan



The gulley that ran from
 Talbot Street to Musgrave Road was a popular sledging place during winter, and, if you were good enough, one could 'sledge' top to bottom and through the half gate onto the footpath in Musgrave Rd. Much to the annoyance of pedestrians trying to go about their business.
 (Photo on left taken in 2000 shows the gully on the right covered with leaves and the Rec on the left, the railing that used to divide the two and the half gate have been removed)
During the war, the 'Rec' was partially converted to a EWS (emergency water supply) tank, which was separated from the swings and 'Parkies' hut by a wire fence. When it was drained at the end of hostilities, the Fire Service spent days catching hundreds of fish that had manifested over the years, many that would grace your plate with a potion of chips, and I dare say many did. After the 'Rec' was resurfaced, many an hour was spent playing football and cricket. (probably using the same old tennis ball). I also recall the 'Big Gun' mounted on a railway wagon that used to manoeuvre each night to a different position on the track, between Bacchus Road and Hockley Depot..I think it was 'housed' in the Bonded Warehouse in Handsworth New Road, but I'm not sure. It fired at the bombers as they flew over, I dont think they ever hit anything, but I remember how my Aunts house walls shook when it was sited adjacent to Allens Rd., as my cousin (Beryl Smith) and I sheltered in the 'Morrison'. Does anyone remember the 'monkey' that used to run along the wall in Harding Street (behind the corner shop)?? I seem to recall it bit Billy Winkles once, and he had what was referred to by the adults as a 'nasty hand'. Hope he's recovered by now, perhaps he will let us know!!!!. All the Best.
 Derek Weston Email:

with  large factory buildings on each corner. Toogood's who made metal tubes and Samuel Groves Ltd who did metal pressings, next to them was Lingards who made children clothes.  Across the road was “The Rec” (Musgrave Road Recreation Ground) with it's own “Parky” (park keeper) who had his own hut and coal fire.  The lower surface of the rec was tarmac suitable for all games; the upper level (yes two levels) there was a full size crown green bowling surface.  Pay the parky for the game and the loan of the woods and rubber, most times we could only afford to sit on the bench and watch others play.  Next to the rec was a passageway called “The Gully” very-very steep, it was used by all the young and the old as a short cut to Talbot Street and Benson Road Junior and Handsworth New Road senior schools beyond.  On wintry days an Olympic size ice slide was made by the more sure footed .  Leaving the others to climb or descend the gully hanging on to the railings, funny to watch when you are young (sorry). Under the railway bridge in Musgrave Road and on the corner of Park Road was our church St Chrysostom's now demolished.  The youth club provided summer outings that probably was the only holiday most of us ever had until we left school and started work.
by Ted Rudge

 I remember when the reck in Musgrave Road had a pool were the bowling green was and the parky use to chase us back up the gully into Talbot Street if he caught us we had a clipping around the head and another when he handed us over to our Mom and Dads ..lovely days Best Colin Aston

I would like to find a photograph of Musgrave Road, The Devonshire Arms or one of the Cottage Baths in Bacchus Road (many a happy Sunday mornings we have spent there, the family marching up there with our towels and soap) by Norman Beech

I was born in Dudley Road Hospital in 1956 and lived at 84 Musgrave Road (two doors from the rec) until 1974. I went to Benson Road and Handsworth New Road, I know the area well.
Regards, David

I was born at 22 Musgrave Road in 1933. I moved to Shirley, but returned to 22 Musgrave Road in 1940. Two friends who also lived in the same road were Charley Jordan and a boy called Jennings. Our next door neighbours in number 20 were the Beeches.David Phillips

Myself and my wife Anne both lived in Musgrave Rd where I lived at 68 and Anne lived at 74.
Here we are 40 yrs later still going strong. Bathing in Bacchus Rd baths catching the 96 Lodge Rd bus or the train at Benson Road.The old schools and photos in fact the whole site brings comfort-thanks

My late grandparents IRENE (Rene) and CHARLES (Charlie) WEBLEY, used to live at (I think)  number
207 Musgrave Rd midway between the railway bridge and the church/Park Rd. They arrived there around 1960/62 with my 13 yr old mother.
I spent lots of time in my early years with my Nan there, and I can still remember the smell of the coal fire, and the polish. I played in the yard out back and the garden beyond the passageway. the loo was outside too. I also remember playing on the swings in the rec, and the bowling green, and walking up the passageway to Talbot Street. Accross the Rd was the sawmill that always whined during the day.
They left there in 1976 when I was about 7 yrs old, but it will always remain the favorite of my grandparents homes; I have fond memories of the place and it was so homeley and cosy. I am now 36, and my Nan would have been 80 next month. They also became good friends of the next door neighbours; Nellie and Billy Cox.
I would dearly love to see a photo of the outside of those houses at the Park Road end of Musgrave Rd, with hope that it would include number 207..
Many thanks  Mark C. T. Healy    Email:


NINEVEH ROAD    (On the Winson Green border)  19/09/04
I used to know  Morris [Monty] Rudge who lived down the bottom of Nineveh Road,1950-1955 I went round with him and  Dennis Jeffries,Gordon Waterhouse before I went into the Navy and would like to hear from them. Keith Lee.   Email:


NORMAN STREET 31/01/2014
I am looking into my family history and have found that my Great Grandfather and his family lived at 33 Norman Street in 1911.
He was a serving Policeman at that time working in C Division from 1896 to 1921.
His name was Thomas Frederick Goodman. His daughter, my Grandmother, was Ida Mary Elizabeth Goodman born in BIrmingham in 1907.
I recently visited Norman Street but it now appears only to be an access road for a new residential estate.
Any information or photos that you may be able to let me have of Norman Street in general and number 33 in particular, would be very helpful.
Regards Ian Jones

NORMAN STREET  05/03/2011

Oldish photos of Winson Green Road taken from Norman Street. The Smiths Arms was taken from no4 Norman Street by John Holmes in the early 1960s. The last one taken in 1964 out side my old house.The two girls are my nieces. Hope this is of some interest
Bernrad Evans

NORMAN STREET 31/10/2010

This drawing of the Winson Green end of Norman Street is the work of Eddie Wilson who lived up the terrace.

Eddie's friend, who sent the drawing to the web site, is Dennis Evans who lived in the house next to Jack Burnett's the hairdressing salon between 1929 and 1952.

 An other photograph Dennis sent us is on the schools page under Foundry Road School  it is of the class of 1937/8.
Dennis Evans -

Only recently aware of your website having been sent your book Winson Green and Brookfields as a present, but think it is lovely bringing back memories.
My name is Dennis Evans and I was born at 8 Norman Street, Winson Green, in 1929 and lived in that house until 1952 when I married.
I would really love to know if anyone could give me any information about Betty Evans (no relation) from Wellington Street, she had a sister, Minnie, and a brother, Arthur.
Also does anyone know the present whereabouts of my cousin - Joyce Valerie Parry (nee Smith) who was born and lived in Blackford Street, Winson Green from 1934 until about 1952.
I have been able to find the rest of our cousins, but not Joyce, so it would be lovely to find her.
Dennis Evans -

Can anyone help me please.
I’m seeking information about the family  McAllister – Robert Weir McAllister (my grandfather) married Lily Cutler  in 1944. Marriage certificate states he was living on Norman Street at the time. He was a jeweller, presumably up the road at the Jewellery Quarter. His father was Duncan McAllister, who was a furnaceman, and unfortunately that’s all the information I have on this side, any help from anyone who knew of this family would be really appreciated. With kind regards Fiona Harris

Nice to see a mention of Norman St, but one of your correspondents stated The Cottage of Content was an M & B pub (see 14/02/03 entry). I lived in The Cottage from 1968 to 1973 and it was definitely Ansells! My dad was the manager Arthur Taylor and had always worked for Ansells, usually in Aston pubs.Does anyone remember Tony State and his mum Dora? Moira Taylor   EMAIL ADDRES not supplied
06/09/09 As there is no contact address Bernard could not send the email below to Moira.
[ I have read the page regarding Moira Taylor she asked if anyone remembers Tony State and his mom Dora. Tony and I were friends when young, he  had a brother named Jack who was a keen fisherman. Dora passed away leaving Tony & Jack at the same house Bernard Evans ]

This is a great site to find out about old Winson Green, I am looking for any information/ photo's of Norman Street (where I was born in 1955) and of Peel Street where we moved to in around 1960 ish, me dad used to drink in the Sir Robert Peel which was directly over the road from our house, and we used to know a Mrs Tonks who used to keep a little shop, I lived in Norman and Peel Street with Dad and Mom Charles and Joan Giles and the clan, Charles, Robert, Carol, Lynn and Tony hope someone can help, as I am trying to include any info in me family history book.
Many thanks Patricia Sharratt (Nee Giles) Email:

This is a long shot but worth a try!
I,m trying to trace my Grandfather or relatives,his name was Thomas Henry Hanson, who was a butcher by trade, and lived around 1910 onwards at 42 Norman Street , possibly working in a local butchers shop (Tays?).  Little is known about him, he does not appear in the 1881or 1901 census, exept he married in 1903.and appeared in 1924at a the wedding of his daughter.Thanks for any help you may be able to offer .B.G.Dalton South

I was born in Norman Street 11/63, then moved to Carlisle Street. I would be interested in writing something towards this site and will try and sort out some photo's. My mother, Ivy Dagless, was the projectionist at Winson Green Cinema. Thanks for a great site. Linda Richardson (nee Dagless)

NORMAN STREET                                    14/02/03

As it is 2003. You can quite clearly see some of the houses with there front doors straight on to the street. Just passed the parked car where the tree is sticking out was our house. At the bottom of the street is Dudley Road Hospital with a brick wall built to replace wooden gates.

I was born in Ladywood but we moved to Norman Street next to the M&B's Cottage Pub in about1944  (Dad wouldn't drink Ansell's) . When I was about three, my father George Butler worked in the Foundry at the Birmid in Smethwick, in those days the men walked to work a) there was no buses and b) you couldn't afford the fare if there was one, so you tried to get as close to your works as you could but you had to bear in mind the rent, and the pub was a bonus to dad, and that's not being disrespectful you will know that if you've worked in a foundry. Mom had two children myself age  4 years old and my sister 18 months older, not only did mom manager the house and children and the finances she worked as a press operator, that is on a hand machine throwing a big lever with a big heavy ball on it to press metal work out this was piece work so you worked hard to earn the pennies. Mom and dad were not unique, that was the way of life for all the families in that area and Smethwick. Our house was on the front of a back to back house. You came directly off the street into the one room down stairs which had a coal fire and a table with four chairs and perhaps one arm chair for your dad, (don't be court in it if he came in it was his chair), this led to a cellar head that had an old brown sink on it, no running water, or drainage, below the sink you had a slop bucket (were waste water went in) you would either tip this in the road when no one was looking or take it to the outside drain up a yard three doors away, you would also get your clean drinking water from the same yard in a very clean bucket you kept for this purpose. Also up this yard was the toilet block you used as there was no toilet in the house you shared this with the people who were joined to you on the back of the property, and the toilet paper consisted of newspaper. Again up the yard was a brew house were you washed the clothes on the day you were allocated, you hadn't better use someone else day you would soon know about it, the brew house had a coal fire and a boiler with and old fashioned mangle. Upstairs of the house was the main bedroom for mom and dad and above that was an attic for my sister and myself with a skylight in the roof, no heating what so ever in the bedrooms.

More than once I went to school with cardboard in my shoes to cover up the holes in the soles, and patches on the seat of my short trousers.  I remember my Uncle Jack who was a plumber putting water and drainage in those properties, we did feel posh.
Money was tight many a time mom would be out when the rent man came i.e. hiding in the house, she used to make toffee apples to sell at the door, she would give us one to go outside to eat to get the other kids interested to go and buy one off her, in those days husbands gave their wife's a certain amount of money and they would have to manage. Mom would use a flit spray and D.D.T., which is banned to fumigate the house for bugs, those old houses encouraged them. For a bath we used to go to the Municipal Baths in Bacchus Road, I hated the man who filled the bath up he would put the hot water in take away the tap and as he was leaving he would start shouting at you to get out quickly and don't leave a mess.
Do you think it was hard? - "we knew no better"- there was always food on the table and we had good Christmas's making the decorations ourselves out of crepe paper and flour made up as glue, dad would make lead soldiers on the open fire using a small ladle and moulds and sell them-we were happy like most of the kids in Winson Green. Alan Butler



Had an Off Licence on its corner with Lodge Road, useful for getting your fags whilst waiting for the 96 bus, town one way the green the other.  Part way down on the right hand side of Norton Street is Coveley Grove, built on the site of the old Norton Street School.  Most of the children of the area went first to Benson Road Infants School where most confusingly the books were stamped Norton Street School.  The street  had a bridge that crossed a railway line, when crossed was Bradfords bakery with the smell of baking bread everywhere. Fresh hot bread could be bought from the bakery after 10pm on Sunday evenings. From an early age many local youngsters,  starting at 5-30am on a Saturday morning, would I helped one of the bread van delivery drivers on rounds all over Birmingham, finishing after 9-00pm for seven and sixpence.
by Ted Rudge

06/06/07Another short story involving people,and a building in Norton Street,we both mentioned Bradfords bakery of the days of our youth and the delivery of bread. My story is when I grown in to manhood,1954 I worked with my brother Fred delivering McDougalls Flour, we would load our lorries from the Railway Goods yard in Pickford St.the other Drivers was Wally Bannister,Ronnie Haywood,Ronnie Dubberly,and we deliverd to canteens,factory canteens, and other places were flour was the Midlands. Mc Dougalls decided to mill flour in Birmingham, so they purchased the Bradfords Bakery building and converted it into a flour proccessing and packing plant,and distribution centre. The company sent three employies from Millwall Docks London,to install all the machinery required for the plant to opperate. They then Advertised for local woman for the proccess and packing,and after a two weeks trainning,they were up and running. The locals that worked there,a happy go lucky bunce of people,the company provide a first classcanteen,that was staffed by cooks Eva & Dasiy first class food.and at xmas time we wood trim the canteen with buntings and ballons,and I would take my recored player and everbody would bring their favourite to play on it,and we all had a
good time,this was after we had plenty to drink at the Railway Inn across the road. The Company where good to work for,every year they paid for annual dayout,the paid for a coach to take us all to London,and a vist to company head offices,and a great miday Luncheon. and a few hours to veiw round the big city We were taken by coach By Local Coach & Driver Mr.Tommy Harper. All the drivers talking about were shall we go when Mr.Tony.McDougall,ask were are you going lads and said into the city,ok said jump in to his car,it was open top convertible we climb aboard and lordit into the city smoke cigars. Then in the Evening we had another meal,then taken to the London Palladium to see a show called talk of the Town.  After thanking the McDougall Family and Directors of the company for a great day out, we started our journey home,half fell a sleep with exhaustion those that still standing sang all the way home. a good day out and paid wages for the day.
Ted the people from our area were happy go lucky Folk. I hope there are people whom took part in this day
out read this story on your Web Site.Colin Mills E-mail



I lived at no.18 from 1954 - 1962 and remember having a friend called Yvonne Adcock who lived across the street. We went to Benson Road School together. There was a pub virtually on the corner of every street then.
 A park called "The Rec"  (short for Recreation Ground) I think was in Musgrave Road.
My Mom and Dad grew up in the same street, Perrot Street, and went to Foundry Road School. They were born in 1920/22. My Dad lived at No. 1  with his Mom, Elsie Simmonds my dad worked on the Railway all his life, working with the horses, delivering, and then being a lorry driver to manager. He worked at all the local stations, Hockley, Curzon Street, etc. Delivering goods to the market and Bulpitts (Swan Brand). My Mom came from a family of 7 who lived a few doors up from Dad in Perrot Street  mom's maiden name was Goode and she had sisters, named, Marjorie, Olive, Jess and May and apparently had two brothers, but they died very young. Mom's dad, Fred Goode, was the driver on the illuminated tram and also use to play football. I remember scattering his ashes around the goalpost at Villa Park Football Ground back in the early 60s.
I will be looking through the family album and no doubt will come across many an old photo or two of Winson Green.
by Jackie Clarke nee Simmonds   09/06/02

PARK ROAD 19/02/2012
Hello. Lovely website. Brings back many memories.
I was born in Dudley Road hospital 1963. I lived at 284? Park Road. Went to Benson Road school.
Does anyone remember a big fire across the road one night? I seem to remember it was a factory. There were fire engines and you could also feel the heat. It was incredible.
I also read another part of this site speaking about the train crash with Benson Road school children. I knew Catherine Clark personally. She always asked me if I had any flowers. I would go home and ask my mum for some daffodils. I do not why she asked me but I always obliged. She was such a beautiful girl. My brother was on that train. He survived. There was a newspaper article with a picture of him holding a box kite. Sadly, I do not have a picture.
Warmest regards
Jane Williams

PARK ROAD 01/06/10

These pics came to me recently, the first one of Park Rd was taken in 1968 according to the date on the picture, Probably just before the houses were demolished if you look at the last entry just before the shops begin and look to the left house in the entry my bedroom was the attic at the very top, I left there in around 1959.
The second picture is of a VE day street party in the same road outside the same houses,My mom gave it too me last week she is now 92 and still bright as a button. She thinks it was she who took the pic. I assume it was taken in 1945, the little boy at this end of the table with an innocent expression is me ...and the girl next to me is my aunt, the others I dont know but perhaps they might recognise themselves or their parents . oh happy days


PARK ROAD 29/07/08
My name is Margaret Thomas nee Clews and I used to live at 268 Park Road, Hockley which was situated between Wharf Lane and Wharf St. The house had 3 bedrooms, a front and living room and kitchen, also a cellar. Outside the back was a yard and then a couple of steps and then the outside toilet, which we did not have to share. Behind this was where the dustbin was kept in a closed in area. Up some more steps was a path which went across the gardens, so that you could go into the neighbours gardens. Luckily enough we were all very friendly with each other. Our paths also continued up the gardens with flower beds each side, and a back wall and gate which backed onto Wharf Street. I can remember a large Walkers Removal van backing into our wall and knocking a part of it down.
I also remember the dustmen and coalmen having to come through our back gate, walk down our long path to deliver the coal, and the dustmen used to carry the old tin bin on the shoulder up the path and then bring the empty bin down again. I cant see them doing that now.
My mother often took me down the Flat and I too remember all those shops, but most of all those lovely dripping cakes. Best in Brum. Also once a week she used to take me shopping up the Soho Road for our main shop of the week. We didn't have cars then, so it was walking I'm afraid. She and Mrs Hubbard our next door neighbour at No. 266 used to take me and her son Colin to Handsworth Park in our prams. Up Park Road, then Ninevah Road, up and up St Michaels Hill, onto Soho Road then along Grove Lane. I don't know where they got the energy from as they still used to do this when we were toddlers in push chairs. As I got older I used to walk round the Park with my friends, Norma Pugh from the cottages in Park Road, just before Wharf Street, and my 2 friends Brenda and Christine Biddle who lived in Norton Street. Our greatest haunt though was the Plaza in Rookery Road. We really loved going there.The good times we had when we were young. All we have now are the memories, although I am still in contact with Christine and Brenda. Those times will never come again. People used to stick together then.
Unfortunately our houses where taken over by the council when the lease finished, and in twelve months were knocked down. There are offices there now, but the memories are still fresh.
 Margaret Thomas (nee Clews)

[little] PARK ROAD 21/10/06
I remember THE FLAT we lived in little Park Road, just round the corner every Monday night we would go and watch the van with the animals go into the slaughter house at the butchers. My sister worked at Masons and Woolworths. My brother used to live in the coffee shop with his mates they were teddy boys. Our name was Humphries Pat Jimmy and Irene.At night I used to walk the flat with my mates and we would look in the shop windows bagging what goods would be ours if we had the money. My mom would go to Spencers on a Saturday afternoon for any thing going cheap before they shut. What a great web site I shall find some old photos to send of the old street. Patricia Byers  Email:


PARK ROAD 02/07/04
I used to live in Park Rd Number 93, third entry up on the right as you leave the Flat, used to be a cafe on the corner of Ford st and Park Rd, then the newsagent shop run by Peggy Lee ( my mom used to clean the shop as a part time job) then the fish shop run by Reg and I think his wifes name was Madge? or Blanche? but could be mistaken.
I remember when mom was a bit flushed me and my sister Jenny would be given a treat, and that was to go to Reggies fish shop and have a fish and chip meal , and whats more we could sit down at the shop and have it in that little alcove with the wooden bench seats. ... wow what a treat we used to feel like millionaires.



I wonder if anyone recalls the day a horse bolted as it came out of Scribbans Bakery ( I worked there as a youngster but thats another story) 
On the corner of Ford St and the Flat (which was the continuation of Lodge Rd) there used to be an off licence called " The hole in the wall" I dont know if this was its real name or just a colloquialism but anyway we all knew it as The Hole in the wall.
One day as I was on my way to school which I think was probably Icknield St infants a fully laden horse drawn bread cart came carrerring down Lodge rd from the bakey out of                                                                                                                      
control, guess where it ended up? yeah you got it, straight through the window of the Hole in the wall, so it was aptly named after all.
I dont know how the driver of the cart came off, but unfortunatly the poor old horse was killed I remember them loading it onto a big lorry.
Another fond memory is one Xmas Eve I was tucked up in bed waiting for Santa to come, and across the road from us was a pub called I think the Abbey Vaults, anyway the Sally Army were playing Carols outside the pub, it may have only happened once, but for me whenever i think of Xmas in Hockley thats what I remember
Thanks for your time building this site, its wonderful.
Regards to you and all your readers
Frank Beckstein

PARK ROAD  11/03/04
I am trying to trace my family tree and on the 1881 census I found my great-grandfather kept a pub in Park Rd called The White Lion.  If anyone knows where in Park Road this pub was situated I would be happy to hear from them    Robert Buckley    .

PARK ROAD 27/03/05
Does any one remember "jimmy tunney"who used to play the"JOANNA"(piano)in the local pubsin the late 60's(many a happy time sat on the step with a pack of crisps & bottle of pop waiting for mom & nan,Harriet Ann Jones,{nance/jazzer}listening to Jimmy play the Joanna to my young ears like a professional. if anyone recalls him doing the rounds of the local pubs playing onthe piano it would be good to hear from them with there recollections and memories of jimmy tunney.
Margaret Coates.(nee Margaret Kirby.)Email:

PARK ROAD  11/03/04
My name is Margaret Coates ( nee Kirby.) my older sister Pat. and younger sister Kay and I used to live at
1/342 Park Road with our mom, Annie Kirby around 1969. .
I was reading your website and I thought I would like to send you some of the memories of the good times we
had while living in Park Road.
My mom and dad were divorced by this time (His name was Leonard "tubby" Kirby and even when they
were together we did not see him that much as he was in prison for "thing's" best left unsaid.) and my mom was working to keep us ,so Kay and I were looked after by our older sister Pat.  We used to disappear and go off on "adventures" like the time Kay had been over the "Wharf" and climbing into the unit's through window's and playing around with the typewriter's and adding machines and other office equipment and she noticed that is was getting late and dark so she started making her way back home and as she climbed over the wall to get back into Park Rd she slipped on a piece of glass and cut her wrist , she didn't know at the time that it was bleeding or that it was cut until she got by a street light and saw the blood ,she was
more worried about getting in trouble when she got home. When she got home mom was their and went to give Kay a 'belting ' for being out late and Kay put her arm's up and saw the blood gushing out and screamed to me to fetch Mick who lived in the next 'entry' at the house at the back , ( where my uncle Billy Jones lived with his wife and kid's.) when Mick came he took a look at Kay's wrist and said she needs to go to Dudley Road hospital and he took mom and Kay in his car, when she was eventually seen they had to stitch the cut up without anesthetic or freezing as it was really close to the main artery and she could have bled to death , she was a handful they had to hold her down as she was kicking and screaming and fighting them off and when my mom tried to get in to Kay they wouldn't let her in!

And then there was the time she had got into trouble again and this time she ran upstairs to my mom's bedroom, and before anyone could stop her she had climbed out of the window on the window ledge and panicked and then by now 'Immortal word's ' rang out fetch Mick, and " Irish Mick" as he was called, who as I recall was really tall and slim seemed to be able to reach Kay without having to do any climbing came to her rescue again.

Does any one remember when there was an accident at the top end of Park Road by the Railway pub involving a truck/van delivering tip/top's being involved in some kind of accident and overturning near the pub one day( I don't think the driver was badly hurt.) all of us kid's when we heard about it legged it up the road and on seeing the van on it's side and the door's open went and helped ourselves to load's of tiptop's we were so excited that we didn't wait to take them home and freeze them we just bit the top's off and drank them, ( we didn't have a fridge.) it was great to us kid's what a treat.

We were"hard up" in those days and we could not afford to go the pictures on a Saturday ( Do you remember
going to the Saturday matinee and the ABC club and singing the ABC song.) so Kay who would have been around six (she was born in1962) came up with a scheme for earning money so we could go to the pictures or swimming at Monument Road bath's ( where we used to go sometimes to have a bath for special occasion's) the one day while we were over the "wharf" and we had been walking around exploring ,playing and "scrumping" someone's vegetables from some allotment's , I was so amazed at seeing a 'red cabbage' for the first time! We found some "old wood"( from the railway possibly small sleeper's.) and Kay and I somehow got hold a chopper and chopped the wood up and tied it into bundle's of firewood like you could buy at the shop's and went around the house's knocking on the door's selling it, and that's how we used to "earn " money to go to the pictures or swimming.

I would have been around twelve and a half ,( I was born the end of 1955.)
And pat our older (less adventurous sister .) sister was born in 1954.

MOM ANNIE KIRBY(in the photo)
MARGARET COATES. (nee Kirby.) E:mail

Margaret Coates sends us  another Email  20/03/04
The house we lived in was as best as I can recall laid out this way, open the front door into a small
living room, on the left hand side of the door was a window, on the left of that was the fire place, and
on the right side of the front door exactly opposite was what we used to call the "kitchen" which
consisted of a small window above one of the old type sink's with just the one tap,in the middle.
Just opposite the doorway (no DOOR.) a cupboard which had a door that opened down which
we used as a work top to spread pieces of bread (some the "sandwiches"we used to eat ,tomato
sauce,brown sauce {H.P.} the thick nestle's cream out of a tin [KAY'S favorite as I recall was sugar.]
couldn't eat them now but then they were the best!) next to the cupboard was the cellar which we
were not brave enough to go into because of the rat's.
To the left of the kitchen in the living room was the cooker,exactly opposite the front door. then along the wall next to the fireplace was the door leading to the stairs and mom's bedroom and the attic where pat, Kay and I slept. The only thing Kay and I enjoyed about the attic was the fun we used to have when we were told to clean up and mop the floor, we used to wet the floor a lot and with our School plimsoll's on we used to play at " skating " on the old lino.( Such good times)
I remember that Pat would sometimes be away from home , she used to go and stay with our gran and grandad who lived in All Saint's Street or Road and next to the house grandad had a scrap metal yard over the road was a big wall (something to do with the railway I think .) he gave Pat the job of painting on the wall, the cost of the metals ,(ie. ferrous & non ferrous metals & steel , copper, lead .nickel ,etc.)
I don't know if any one remember's them ,granddads name was Alfred Baden Jones,and gran's name was Harriet Ann Jones (Jazzer or Nance.)
To return to Park Road one day, our older sister Pat had for some reason got all dressed up (maybe some thing like going to"see a group/band not sure,) but she had been told by mom to find Kay and get her in for tea , at the top of our yard a man lived with a tree in his 'GARDEN' Kay was up the tree and when Pat called her to come in Kay said that she was stuck in the tree and could not get down, so Pat started to climb up to Kay (she was a bit angry by this time.) and she fell / slipped and laddered her new stockings, Of course Kay disappeared quick smart.
I also remember a really nice elderly lady who lived in one of the houses that fronted on to park road
2/or 3 houses away from us,(going towards the Mint pub.) who I used to talk who had a "fat" dog ,a
corgi, I think the dog's name was "Peggy" I happened to mention to her the one day that I liked dripping to eat on bread and every Sunday without fail she would give me a basin of dripping, I would go home and raid the bread and have a feast, it was lovely just like a banquet to a young child who often went hungry. I wish I could remember that lovely kind ladies name.
And it would be good if anyone who visit's this website and read's this and might have known us got in touch with us through you Ted.
See Margrets sisters story on the Stories page  (Living in LITTLE PARK ROAD 1960's)

PARK ROAD (the Flat end)
Looking back you do not realize how small our bit of the world that we lived in was, I reckon that if put a circle with a half mile radius on top of where you lived most people would have lived at least ninety percent of their lives within that circle.
Mine, for instance, I was born in Dudley Road Hospital in 1945 and taken to live at 2/214 Park Road, Hockley for the next twenty year's, ours wasn't a very crowded back to back courtyard like some other's around the area, ours had two houses but only one outside toilet, luckily it was attached to our house, a lot of gentle coughing went on to inform other's that it was occupied but on the good side both house's had their own tin baths but sadly there was no hot water as it all had to be boiled on the gas ring or over the open fire as we only had one cold water tap over the sink. Our house also had a cellar, where the coal was keep, quite scary at night when you we told to go down the cellar to fill the bucket with only a candle for company, my mom also kept large crock bowls in which she used to pickle eggs and onions. Although the women were always house proud, insofar as cleanliness, when it came to decoration the houses were that damp that any paper or paint that was put on the walls would peel or flake within months. There was no garden at all just a brick covered thirty by twenty foot court yard
My mom and dad both worked at Rabone's by Hockley Brook, dad being a senior toolmaker and mom a press operator. When I was old enough to get about every thing you wanted was available to us within a couple of hundred yards up or down Park Road, our house was situated on the left hand side of the road just passed Abbey Street, as if you were coming from the Flat. Just up the road, next door to the Sandpitts, was Wessons, which was just like your little corner shop where you could just about get anything in small quantities, further up on the corner of Wharf Lane was Wilkes the paper and haberdashery shop, on the other side of Wharf Lane was Jeff's green grocers and general store, most of the women did their weekly shop there. They all stood, patiently, in a queue all holding their shopping lists which they handed over to Mr or Mrs Jeff (short for Jefferson, I think) or one of their helpers, they would then proceed to dash around the shop getting all on the list. Mr Jeff was like a human calculator, his main job was to price and add up the shopping lists upon completion, bearing in mind it was pounds, shillings, pence and all the other bits like ha'pennies and farthings, he used to put the price next to the item on the list and add it up at the same time, so by the time he'd got to the bottom the total was put straight underneath, all done at incredible speed, it was a pleasure to watch him at work. I used to have to go there every other day or so to get the bread and on the way home I used to pick the crusty bits off the top of the loaf, many a time I had a clip around the ear for bringing home a bald loaf.
In the other direction and on the other side of the road opposite Abbey Street we had our fish shop and the outdoor, fish and chips for 9d. (6d. for fish and 3d. for chips), about 4p. in today's money, if you were lucky you could get a pile of bits chucked on top. On the other side of the road, just passed Abbey Street was our sweet shop, can't think of the old guy's name who owned it, I used to go there every week with my pocket money, sixpence on a good week threepence on a bad week, armed with the ration book and try and get as much as I could for my money. On the way down the road you would pass many more shops, all of a similar nature to those previously described, all making a meager living from the thronging population, nearly opposite Goode Street was the second hand shop, filled from top to bottom with only what could be called junk, us kids used to spend many an happy hour mooching amongst the artifacts, I think the little old lady who owned it liked the company but I think she had a cheek putting ' Antiques and Quality Second Hand Items' on the window. Onward passed Whitmore Street many more shops selling shoes and the like, ladies hairdressers, men's barbers and another fish and chip shop, used to be owned, I think, by a chap called Reggie, it was the only shop I'd ever been in that had a fryer fueled by coal, the only problem with it was that when the wind was blowing in the wrong direction you chocked to death as the shop filled with smoke but it was worth putting up with as the chips were the best I've ever tasted. A few yards further on and you were on The Flat, all the shops you've ever wanted, what ever you want you could get it there, all greatly explained by others elsewhere but I know I used to love going down The Flat. There was enough pubs within the vicinity to satisfy the most ardent pub crawler.
I was glad to leave the area when I got married at twenty and moved to my own brand new house, which I built myself, with all mod cons like an inside toilet, bathroom, hot water and believe or not central heating, I now look back with fondness at those times and feel glad to have experienced those, now called, hardships.
By Keith Bird 11/05/02

 I lived very briefly in "The Old Engine" pub in Park Road around 1957-58 and attended school at All Saints. Would anyone have any photos of the pub, or any stories concerning it ???  I believe it is now a gaming archade called "The Melting Pot"   R Fennelly 04/05/03  Email:

PARK ROAD 12/09/04
I am looking for any information on the GEORGE family who lived at 318 Park Road, All Saints in about 1891. My great grandfather was Walter Wallace GEORGE and his father was Harry GEORGE (goldsmith) married to Elizabeth TAYLOR. If anyone has any information on this GEORGE family please contact me
Sharolyn Redfern


PARK ROAD 21/01/04
 I lived in Park Road, close to the "Engine" pub.I now live in North Carolina, USA.  
Pauline Philbeck nee Hewitt  Email:

PARK ROAD and more 09/10/02
I was born in Dudley Road Hospital in 1954 and lived first at 3/448 and then at 1/342 Park Road, Hockley from 1958 to 1965. Both houses were "back" houses located up the entries between houses directly facing the Soho Wharf on the opposite side of the road. I remember that there were outside toilets and derelict wash-houses "up the yard". The houses had cellars and no bathrooms, and very tiny kitchens. The families that lived in our yards were called Farnell, Singleton, Wilcox and Harper.
I attended Benson Road School, as did my younger sister, my mother Gwen Malin (nee Ferguson) and her sister Barbara Waite (nee Ferguson). The headmistress was Miss Legg, and I can remember that some of my teachers were Mrs Watson, Mr Powell, Ms Neal, Mr Davies, Mr Evans and Mr Lee. I think the school secretary was Miss Eastbury. My best friends were Michael Patrick, James Parkes and Kathryn Clark, who also lived in Park Road. There was also a friend named John Goody who lived in Norton Street opposite McDougalls factory. Another friend was called Paul bird who lived in Park Road up by Wharf Street in what at that time used to be shop, possibly a pawnbrokers. We used to play football in the "Rec" in Musgrave Road, and sometimes ventured to Black Patch Park (Foundry Lane), Summerfield Park and Handsworth Park.
We lived next door to my grandparents John "Jack" and Louise "Rose" Ferguson (nee Lewis), who probably lived in Park Road from the early 1920s. They left the area before the houses were demolished in the late 60s. I recall my grandparents used a pub called 'The Mint' just at the end of the road at the corner of Park road and Dover Street. My "nan" used to get a jug of mild from pub to bring home, and my grandad used to sing in the pub. There was also a church called St Chrysostoms on the corner of Park Road and Dover Street, but the entrance was in Musgrave Road. My Nan worked round the block in Radnor Street at a factory called Barwells. My grandparents also went to the "Railway Tavern" and "Soho Tavern" pubs in Park Road, and also the "Black Eagle" in Factory Road.
When we went to "Town" we would catch the bus in Lodge Road at the top of Norton Street or take the train to Snow Hill Station from Winson Green Station in Benson Road. There was also a station at Park Road, Hockley down by Icknield Street, and I believe my father worked there for a short time on the railway. I recall that opposite Winson Green Station in Benson Road there was access to a courtyard and houses that overlooked the railway line. This is where we used to some trainspotting with other boys.
We did most of our shopping down the flat at the end of Park Road in Lodge Road. I remember Woolworths and also Nortons in Key Hill. Sometimes the family shopped on "Main Road", which is what we called the Soho Road at the top of Nineveh Road. There were a lot of "corner" shops in Park road, and one in Dover Street where a friend named David Lynock lived. The papershop in Park Road near the Soho Tavern was run by a Mr Hall, and I always remember the fish and chip shop near Wrensons opposite the Soho Tavern near Benson Road. The corner shop a few entries up from where we lived was run by a family called the Masons.
My grandad supported the Villa and to get to the ground I used to catch the No 8 from Icknield Street or the 40E from Villa Road (near St Michael's Church in Factory Road). I also went to the Baggies regularly and used to catch a bus from the Soho Road to the Hawthorns.
I can remember many other streets in the area, such as: Abbey Street, off Park Road, which was problematic for dogs running wild; Talbot Street, which was connected to Musgrave Road via a "gulley" that ran alongside the Railway Line; Bacchus Road, where a friend named Derek Tudor lived; and Devonshire Avenue and Kent St North. I think there was a pub called the Talbot in Talbot Street.  by Michael Malin
NAME: Tony Courtney    Email:

PAXTON ROAD 06/09/06
 I attended Handsworth New Road School from 1952-56 and was in Mr Berrimans class, does anyone have a photograph of him or any memories to share. I had the cane from him a few times, he was an absolute ogre.
The photograph of the 1952-53 football team pictures Horace Timbrell who was in my class and lived a few doors away in Paxton road, Hockley.
Does anyone remember me,   Tony Courtney   Email:

PEEL STREET 21/05/2013

 I have just been looking at your Internet site,and there is a photograph on there from Frank Thornton 15/09/06. He is looking for the name of a lad on the photo, this is my brother Colin Talbot . We lived at 89 Peel Street my dad Bill used to work in the Robert Peel pub to subsidise his wages for our holidays, mums name is Nancy & at 91 she is still going strong. Colin is the eldest,followed by Keith then myself and younger sister Glenys. My grampy also lived with us Francis John Baker, he always had a bag of sweets in his pockets for all the kids in the street, he was a well loved person on the street. We all went to foundry road school then my brothers went on to Handsworth New Road. We had an aunt & uncle Elizabeth & Jack Haywood & son John who sadly are no longer with us who lived halfway down Spring Hill opposite a pub I can't remember the name. Another aunt & uncle Lena & Ivor who also sadly are not with us any more and sons David & Victor who lived further on down the road aunt Lena used to play the organ in the nearby baptist church.
We left Peel street in 1960 and moved to Hereford.Grampy stayed in Peel street for another 6 years
Does anyone remember us ?  Best regards Wendy Nash

PEEL STREET 24/09/2011
I noticed your wonderful website and wondered if you can help me, I'm looking for a man name Patrick Reid (unsure of the exact spelling of the surname) who lived in peel street in 1963/64 probably longer but that is all i am aware of. If any one has any information at all i'd be more than greatful if some one could contact me .
Thank you.

PEEL STREET 18/12/10
I have just found your site. Its great seeing all the old photo's. I am researching my family tree and my gt gt gt grandfather owned houses in Peel Street.
My gt grandfather was born there in Wardell Buildings. Has anyone ever heard of them? There were seven houses altogether.
Thanks  Sue Wardell

PEEL STREET 31/03/10

Does anyone still use telegrams? Going through some paperwork I found this greetings telegram to my parents Edie and Ernie Field.

It is dated 16th April 1938- their wedding day, and 2/ 69 (2 back of 69) Peel Street is where mum lived at the time.

This one is typed and there are 2 others which are hand- written.

 Best Wishes Roger Field


PEEL STREET 10/01/10

Just came across this photo it shows my mum Edith Field and Uncle Les (dad's brother) who lived at 84 Peel Street, sitting on my first motorbike, a James Captain, in the back garden at 112 Peel Street. This would be 1959 as I can see the bike still has 'L' plates on and I passed my test early in 1960. I bought the bike from Cope's Motorcycles on Hagley Road, near the King's Head, and they gave free lessons on their track, somewhere near Barnes Hill if I remember correctly, on BSA Bantams which they provided. The trouble was you had to ride there first, a complete novice and on public roads. I stopped going when I was told off for going too fast!!!
The houses in the background are one of the terraces that came in from Lansdowne Street, which would be on the right hand side of this photo.
Best wishes and a Happy New Year to you all. Roger Field

PEEL STREET 09/10/09

Sadly my mother Edith Field passed away on 16th September 2009 in a care home, aged 90yrs. We used this wedding photograph on the Order of Service at her funeral (Dad passed away in 2006, aged 93yrs). I had often wondered why the wedding photos were taken in Peel Street and not at St Cuthberts Church, but found out while talking to her sister at the funeral. The photographs were taken at St Cuthberts originally, on a very old camera using glass plates (this was in 1938 remember). Unfortunately, on his way home the photographer tripped over, dropped them and of course they shattered. He then had to hotfoot it round to Peel Street where the wedding celebrations were well under way, explain what had happened and ask everyone to please change back into their finery so he could take some more. These were taken in the yard at the side of 69 Peel Street and the shop in the background is the one owned by Mrs Silvers, who has been mentioned before. So all is now clear.
St Cuthberts Church is no longer there, of course, but I do remember that there was a Church Hall behind it, in Cuthbert Street, and while I was in my final year at Dudley Road School (1953), the top two classes from there were held in the church hall for some reason. I was there in the class run by Mr Moss, who has also been mentioned before. I found him to be a very good teacher and it was only through his efforts that I managed to pass my 11-plus and go on to George Dixon Grammar School.
Keep up the good work, Roger Field


PEEL STREET 28/10/08
My name is Stanley Williamson. I lived at no. 4 Peel Gardens in Peel Street from when I was born in 1932 until I moved to Bedford in 1959. My father, William Williamson, owned a taxi cab and I was the youngest of 10 children, 5 girls and 5 boys. Sadly only three of us are here today, two sisters, Joan and Dorothy and myself.