Some weeks ago I raised the story of the football stuck in the decorative cross on the roof of St. Michael’s Church in Caldmore, Walsall. I raised the tale at the time mainly because it’s a cracker of a legend, but also because it had been the subject of intense speculation between myself and local history ferret [Howmuch?].
Last weekend, twitter top bloke and all round good egg @BillytheBez answered my plea and took a couple of pictures, confirming the decades-old ball was still lodged firmly where only birds and steeplejacks dare.
A couple of weeks ago you referred to an article from the Black Country Bugle in 2005 and the story of a football that got stuck many years ago in the cross on the top of St Michaels’ church. I was passing on Saturday and had my camera with me – I’m afraid I’m no photographer but I think you can see the ball’s still there!
You can’t really see from the pictures but the ball appears to have a metallic sheen – so perhaps it owes its longevity to several coats of Hammerite?
The other thing is how the ball hit the cross with such force – and at such an angle – as to have lodged so rigidly. It must have hit the cross absolutely straight on. The account in The Bugle says it got there by bouncing off the wall of Matthew Harvey’s factory which was situated opposite the church in Bath Road which would have given it such a trajectory.
I understand since the last Vicar moved on the vicarage has been up for sale and the church unused, and whether it will ever ring to the sound of organ and choir again is not certain. Ah well, change is inevitable and things do always move on. Except for that football, it would appear.
Thanks for the excellent blog!
I thank Billy for that – this is exactly the kind of collaborative effort that makes this blog fun to do. I was unaware this fine church was unused, and hope it finds a new incumbent soon. It really is a lovely building.
The church where my parents were married and I was baptized
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