Just to clear up any confusion, there are two Highfields Farms in the area. One, I’ve blogged about before, on Pool Road at Chasewater. It was up for auction last time I visited and to the best of my knowledge, has no planning applications outstanding yet. The other used to stand before the Jockey Meadows on the Lichfield Road in Walsall Wood, next to the former Horse and Jockey pub, on the very border of Walsall Wood and Shelfield. Both have suffered periods of dereliction. That’s the one I’m talking about here.
I just thought I’d bring to the attention of blog readers and residents of Walsall Wood that pleasant changes are afoot. Highfields Farm had stood next to the Horse & Jockey pub for years, just on the edge of the wet farmland known locally as ‘Jockey Meadows’ – the farmland always seemed to be wet, and the cattle kept there up until 1992 often looked dirty and miserable in the fields by Lichfield Road. In recent times, it had become derelict and empty – most of the outbuildings had collapsed through neglect and rubbish was strewn across the site. Finally, in 2008, after being sold to a buyer with plans for a new house, it was demolished. Highfields Farm was a typical late Victorian building in the style of many in the area, was in dreadful repair, an in my opinion is no great loss. Since demolition, the site seems to have been used as a builders yard, but recently I notice planning application 09/0609/FL had been submitted to the council (I can’t link directly, click the link and enter the number in the search box). This application is requesting permission for a new bungalow, built largely from reclaimed materials from, and similar new materials to the ones originally present in the farmhouse. An excellent discussion of the recent history of the farm and the plans for its’ replacement can be viewed here (PDF format, Adobe Reader required), in the design and access statement submitted to Walsall Council’s planning office, and freely available on their information page for the application.
The bungalow proposed appears to be an attractive and well designed dwelling that stands in pretty much the same position as the original house, and I think it should be welcomed as another addition to the often interesting achitecture of Walsall Wood.
Approval has yet to be granted, watch this space or the council’s planning website for further information. I wish the applicants the best of luck in their endeavour.
Direct links to documents in PDF format on Walsall Council’s planning website: