Go west…

Since it’s Pelsall Canal Festival weekend, I thought I’d focus on the village over the swag this week. Although traditionally separate communities, I’m aware that in these enlightened times, some mingling has taken place and many folks in Brownhills have relatives and loved ones in the principality. Since the EU ratification, the requirements for a passport check on the Pelsall Road have been ruled unlawful, and a degree of free movement between our fellow settlements is now tolerated, but only providing we wipe our feet and don’t touch the ornaments. In return, we always suggest the visitors from afar travel around the ‘hills in threes and don’t change money on the street.

Anyone wishing to find out more about the habits, preoccupations and proclivities of the Pelsalians could do no better than check out Jayne Howarth’s excellent blog ‘Common People’, which should be on any locals’ reading list.

There’s a wealth of history in Pelsall, which is well worth visiting. With Brownhills material now admittedly getting a bit thin, I’m having to cast the net a tad wider for these features, and there are some excellent Pelsall photos in the book I feature this week, ‘Around Pelsall and Brownhills in old photographs’ by David F. Vodden. It’s a wonderful book and I implore you to buy a copy if you can find it.

If you have any photos you’d like to feature here, Brownhills or otherwise, or have ideas or subjects you’d like to see, please do drop me a line. BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com.

‘Pelsall North Common – a fine place for nature, and site of the canal junction – was not always thus. The scrub on the right was the site of a Victorian iron foundry. Taken from ”Around Pelsall and Brownhills in old photographs’ by David F. Vodden.

‘This pub – now called The Fingerpost – has had a troubled history. A noted real ale pub in the nineties, it underwent several changes of management and a notorious robbery. It now seems to have settled into a decent, stable local pub. Taken from ”Around Pelsall and Brownhills in old photographs’ by David F. Vodden.

‘I’ve been itching to feature this on the blog for ages, but never had reason. These two images are grimly fascinating. Does any reader have more information? Who were the unfortunate drivers, and was anyone hurt? Taken from ”Around Pelsall and Brownhills in old photographs’ by David F. Vodden.

I’ve a feeling that local legend and top historian Stuart ‘The Edditer’ Williams may know something about this… historical re-enactors on the hoof. Taken from ”Around Pelsall and Brownhills in old photographs’ by David F. Vodden.

This building is now the Old Corner House Tea Rooms, which I had the good fortune to visit this week. Worth a visit for the period features, quiet atmosphere, and rather good food. I find the chapel in the background startling, must find out more about it. Taken from ”Around Pelsall and Brownhills in old photographs’ by David F. Vodden.

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3 Responses to Go west…

  1. @chrisdavies1 says:

    Interesting (and funny) blog. Now get back up your own end 🙂

  2. STYMISTRESS says:

    I remember the off licence well when it was Galleon Wines. In the early 80’s I used to attend Girl Guides in the Chapel behind. (It is a strange mix whilst the chapel was rebuilt the rooms we had guides in behind it are quite old) We used to exit guides and go and buy bullion bars of blue bird toffee to chew through!

  3. stymaster says:

    A bit of further info, via my mother-in-law: The old chapel in Chapel St was demolished and the land sold to pay for the new chapel building on the other side of the street. For a while, the chapel was housed in the building that is now a Sunday school next door.

    It seems the old chapel was demolished just because of maintenance and running costs, rather than a structural problem: I’ll try to confirm this. Sad really, given the rather nice building. The date given of 1969 is accurate.

    There were several other Methodist Chapels too: One near the Queens Hotel, and one in Paradise Lane. There’s some pictures here, some scanned from the book Bob mentions above, and some from ‘Street names of Bloxwich and Pelsall’, a book by Walsall Local History Centre.

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