The Anchor Bridge, taking the Chester Road-High Street over the Wyrley & Essington canal, was named after the old inn that stood next door, itself pointing out the potential refreshment for bargees using the waterway. A landmark for centuries, the bridge was once host to a toll gate, and has always stood at the (arguable) demarkation between Brownhills, Shire Oak and Walsall Wood. It has seen many changes over the years, and quite a few incidents.
I pay tribute to the sources of the these images – please obtain copies of the author’s work if you can find it.
The Anchor Bridge tollhouse sat alongside the canal opposite the pub. There's a legend locally that Dick Turpin jumped the tollgate here on his horse, Black Bess, after fleeing from London. It is, of course, rubbish; the act was chronologically impossible and poor old Dick would have been very lost and heading in the wrong direction. From Walsall Local History Centre's Flickr stream.
A fascinating shot of an accident that could have been very much worse for the driver than it actually was. Interesting to see that rubbernecking is not a modern phenomena. From 'Memories of Brownhills Past' by Clarice Mayo and Geoff Harrington.
The bay window of the Old Anchor is just visible to the right. In this unusual shot, one can see just how imposing and bold the planning and construction of the towerblocks must have been. Wonder what the scaffold on top of Severn House was for? From 'Memories of Brownhills Past' by Clarice Mayo and Geoff Harrington.
I remember walking to the old Anchor Inn to get stuff from the Outdoor in the evenings - crisps, cigarettes, even bottles of beer. It always seemed raucus and noisy. In contrast, the new pub bearing the name always seemed quiet and lifeless. From 'Around Pelsall and Brownhills in old photographs' by David F. Vodden.