Chasetown, Burntwood and surrounds, mid 1800s

Here’s another gem from contributor and top Lichfield District Council officer Gareth Thomas. It’s an undated property map of Chasetown, Burntwood and the surrounding area – including the tip of Chasewater, here named Norton Reservoir – in what I think to be about 1850.

There are gems here for all map fans and this is a real beauty. It’s fairly large, so please be patient while it loads. The ownership details listed here are worth it alone, let alone the gorgeous draftsmanship.

Again, huge thanks to Gareth who takes time out to scan these wonders just for readers of the blog.

I’ve rotated the map, so north is about 40 degrees to the top. Chasewater – bottom left – will help you orientate a view of the area long before urbanisation. Please click for a larger version, but be patient – it’s nearly 9 megabytes in size. Thanks to Gareth Thomas and Lichfield District Council, 2012.

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26 Responses to Chasetown, Burntwood and surrounds, mid 1800s

  1. Clive says:

    Nice one, thanks to Gareth and Bob.

  2. pedro says:

    Now I am a little confused about this map!

    If you enlarge and look just to the right of the second spike of Norton Resrvoir you can see Cathedral Colliery marked. Now from the 1887 OS Map (where the Reservoir is marked Cannock Chase Reservoir!) here…

    you can see that this is Cannock Chase Colliery. The Cathedral Pit belonging to the Harrison Family is described as 200 yards S of Watling Street and 600 yards to the W of the Rising Sun.

    • The Cathedral pit was indeed on the common. This one is, as you say, Cannock Chase. Cathedral was it’s nickname: it was in common use for any pit that had a large vault somewhere within. I suspect this map may predate the ‘real’ cathedral pit, but I may be wrong.


      • pedro says:

        In the CCMHS publication William Harrison Ltd, it suggests that the Cathedral Pit was set on land owned by the Dean and Chapter of Lichfield, and maybe this have given rise to the name. Being acquired by Harrison in 1849 would point to the Cathedral Pit being in existence before that date.

        • I’m really not sure of the date of this map, to be honest. It may be earlier than 1850. It depends if this is an accurate depiction of the buildings in the area – if it is, then it’s really quite early.That’s a new angle on the cathedral name I’d not heard before.

  3. Pedro says:

    Hi Bob,

    Things are still bugging me about your map above!

    The use of colours and the font seem modern compared to, say, those used in the examples contained in the “Miles of steel over wood” post here…

    It could be a copy of an original.

    Could the Colliery named Catheral be Uxbridge, Cannock Chase Colliery No2? See a better 1887 OS Map here…

    There is a railway shown going in a SSE direction which would roughly fit that shown on the OS Map. If this assumption is correct then in 1858 the Cannock Chase Railway opened between Uxbridge and Anglesey Wharf and would give a lower limit to the date. The Cannock Chase Colliery Company was formed in 1859.

    Uxbridge Pit seems later to become known as the Fly Pit and was sunk in 1852.

    I may be talking rubbish, but if it is the Uxbridge then it raises more questions!

    All the best, Peter

    • Pedro says:

      The Geologic Survey second edition of 1859, mentioned in the Rock and Coal article, actually mentions Cathedral Collery as lying “in the trough of the Rising Sun 2 miles to the SE” (from Norton)

      Using the exact term Cathedral Colliery in book could suggest that there is a mistake??

      All the best, Peter

  4. Andy Dennis says:

    There are many odd thingsabout this map.

    At first sight it looks related to the Enclosure Act and shows land parcelled up for sale. I gather land was advertised in 1858. At the bottom of thr map the cross roads at The Spot is clear and the long building could be the Uxbridge Arms, which dates it to 1856 latest. As I understand it the colliery was known as the Uxbridge (after the Marquiss of Anglesey, who was also Earl of Uxbridge), so the Catherdral name is more of a mystery. It became known as the Fly for its fast winding gear. It is odd that the road to the pit is not shown. This was known as Colliery Road before Church Street. I thought the road shown as Colliery Road was Lichfield Road before being named Queen Street. Bridge Cross Road is shown where Springhill Road is today – makes no sense.

    When I first saw Brownhills and Rugeley Road, i thought I was looking at an important piece of the jigsaw showing how Brownhills was linked to Cannock Chase before the Anglesey Branch Canal. On one of Gerald Reece’s drawings is an old Ironstone Road about where Howdles Lane is today. Ironstone was mined in the Cannock Wood area a long time ago so a direct link seemed likely, so the idea of a Brownhills Road where Chasetown High Street is today has considerable appeal. I appreciate they don’t quite align, but the Crane Brook might have caused some kind of deviation. However, I don’t know how much I can trust this map.

    I don’t recall the reservoir ever being Norton Reservoir. Cannock Chase Reservoir, yes. Norton Pool, yes. Great Crane Brook, not Big?

    As Pedro says, the style of text seems too modern. Even the title – Plan referred to – looks suspicious.

    Needs some input from our friends in the Burntwood Family History Group?

    • Pedro says:

      Hi Andy,

      Came across a Reference from a Dudley Geographical Society paper from July 1864 that refers to the large Norton Reservoir.

      Regards Pedro

  5. HI Folks, Sorry I should have given Bob some background to the map so my appologies.

    This is a certified copy of the 1861 Burntwood Enclosure Award map and scanned by me here at Lichfield District Council. This certified copy was made in 1961 at the request of the Council in order to preserve the original which is currently held at Staffordshire Local Records Office here in Lichfield (Library).

    The plan is a traced version copied by hand and then certified as an exact original by deed agreement with Messrs Moseley Chapman Solicitors for the sum of £392.00

    The Burntwood Enlosure Award is dated as 10th October 1861 and prepared by the Marquess of Anglesey. There was a provisional order made on 23rd July 1856 but we presume this document is held by Lichfields Record Office.

    The Enclosure was confirmed by Commissioners on the 5th December 1861.

    i hope this goes some way of giving more background to the map.

    • Andy Dennis says:

      Thanks, Gareth. I really do appreciate your providing these maps, photos and so on.

      This might explain the fonts. But it also shows what a lot changed in the next few years. Some of the road names are clearly about destination or direction, e.g. Burntwood and Cannock Road. And Colliery Road would be from Burntwood Green to the pit. It looks as though my original impression was right about Brownhills and Rugeley Road that there was a connection, but this map is after the Anglesey Branch Canal was built. In any case it seems if there was a through road it had fallen into disuse much earlier, either before, or as a consequence of, the feeder from the reservoir to the canal at Ogley.

      I would love to see the equivalent map for the area between this one and Watling Street! I think it would put an end to a rumour …

      Thanks, again

      • Andy I am on it , The map is to big to scan but what I can do is take some high resolution photo’s and stitch together for you and then let Bob have it to publish to you all….

        If there are particular questions, people just ask and i can look through the records and see what we hold if anything that can be shared etc..

  6. Pedro says:

    Thank you Graham for providing these maps and the details.

    We now know the date of 1861, as as Andy had thought it is related to the Enclosures. After paying 392 quid we can be assured that it is an exact copy.

    That said, for me, there still remains the question of why the Maquis named the Colliery as Cathedral on the map drawn up.

    In 1854 the Marquis let out two pits, the Uxbridge Pit in Chasetown, and Hammerwich Pit to John McLean and Richard Chawner. They formed the Cannock Chase Colliery Co in 1859. He had opened the Uxbridge in 1852 at a cost of £20,000.

    Looking in White’s Directory of 1834 there is a mention of The Marquis being The Lord of Burntwood… “On the Chase there is an extensive rabbit-warren, with a neat house called Coney Lodge (top middle of map)…James Derry was warren-keeper.”

    It also says that in 1834 Burntwood contained 709 acres, and that although the Marquis was Lord there were many smaller freeholders, which would tie in with the map.

    At the bottom of the map there is a Ball Inn which may be named after Mrs Elizabeth Ball who endowed the free school in 1765.

  7. Andy Dennis says:

    Several sources locate Hammerwich Colliery at the foot of the dam, which became Cannock Chase No. 1 and operated 1849-1856.

  8. pedro says:

    Thanks Andy,

    Looking at the Chasewater Wildlife Group publication A History of Chasewater on Page 2…

    This map, said to be from the agreement of 1855, shows the 2 pits, and the orientation is to the correct north. Hammerwich Pit being on the Eastern dam.

  9. Clive says:

    Hello Gareth, I wonder have you any maps or ariel photos of Shire Oak Hill which you can share with us, If you have the time?
    Many thanks to you for the info you have already provided.

  10. pedro says:

    A little more information concerning Uxbridge No.2 Pit.

    It was first known as “the Uxbridge” (the family name of the Marquis) and later as The Fly. It was situated at the head of Church Street.

    • Andy Dennis says:

      As I understand it the family name was Paget. The Beaudesert Estate was confiscated from the church and granted by Henry VIII to Sir William Paget, who later became Baron Paget. A descendant became Earl of Uxbridge, hence the colliery name. The second Earl became Marquess of Anglesey in the early 1800s. There is some sort of connection to the Irish aristocracy. Eventually, after one of the family squandered the fortune, in the early 1900s Beaudesert fell into disrepair and the family retreated to Plas Newydd, Anglesey.

      • Pedro says:

        Copying from a source! Always check the source if possible.

        It was not a family name as you say, but they were Earls of Uxbridge.

        All the best, Peter

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  15. colin andrew says:

    who owned the blue ball inn pub in 1969

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