A quick one for the Walsall Wood contingent: I won’t say exactly why, because it’s a little bit unusual – but was there once a factory or business in the Hall Lane area of Walsall Wood or nearby called Spurrells (or something like that?)
What did the company do, or make? Was there an Italian chap who maybe owned the company, or was in charge or some other prominent position?
If you remember this company or the chap in question, please comment here or mail me: BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com.
Thanks, everyone. More will be revealed if any info is forthcoming…
Wasn’t it in that group of factories more or less opposite where Baron’s Court now stands? I also recall a sign with “Drills & Reamers” on it. I certainly remember the name and will consult Aar Kid when I ring him tonight.
Yes, it was in the building opposite Barons Court that sells pine furniture. The manager was a little man with glasses named Mr Robinson I think, everyone called him Robbo. They did metal components of some description, can’t remember what. I worked there for a few months between jobs when I was about sixteen. There were hand presses and big foot presses etc.
I worked at Spurrells in 1953 as an apprentice tool maker, it was opposite the Primrose Cafe on the main road, It had a large number of small and large press tool machines belt operated, operated by woman. It produced objects for bigger company’s such as fridge door handles plus many more items. I lived in Brownhills, my parents had an shop and off licence on the High Street corner off New Rd. Derek Breeze
Sorry, forgot to say that Barons Court was then the Primrose Cafe, before it was The Watersplash.
Yes that’s exactly where it was in that block however I thought that it was the end of the block close to the Public House. i also worked there for a few days during that spell which I talk about in my blog, I think after i walked out of Trumans , Problem was I did not want to do that sort of job, but I found my niche eventually.
I remember it well. I worked there round about 1957 and operated a hand press, back then I was known as Jean Stanway. Jack Taylor was the foreman over the power presses and Robbo was the factory manager if my memory is correct. My colleagues at the time were Marleen Wood, Pamela Lockett, Josie Bull and Marion Selby. There was a plating shop on site to clean and plate the finished pressed components but I can’t recall what the components were used in, I presume cars.
hello jean – nice to hear from you – I remember it well – this is kathleen Marlenes cousin and daughter of Lil Birch. You used to come to my grans for your dinner – and our kids were friends hope you are ok
I remember Robbo, He built his own motor bike in his dinner breaks.
yes oppersit barons court next to it was fowlers i think i was born over the road next to the boot
Spot on with the location. Spurrell’s were one of the first post-war, purpose-built factories in the Wood, as I remember. The trademark was ‘Ricspur’, a condensation of Richard Spurrell. The only other purpose-built factory of the time was Thacker Barrows.
Yes the place is Ricspur works it is my factory now when I moved in there was metal bits all over the floor.
I rang Paul this evening and he confirms what I posted earlier. He also told me that one of the redistributionists in our family (now, sadly, passed on and beyond the reach of the West Midlands Constabulary) constructed several first-class pigeon pens from the materials he “liberated” from the site when those factories were being built.
Bob is being a bit mysterious about this post so I hope he has not received an enquiry from the factory owner trying to discover what happened to all that timber in 1948!
Bob, come on then what is there to be revealed?
All the best
I remember presenting a bouquet to Mrs. Spurrell at an event being held at Walsall Wood football ground.
Yes Bob my father worked there for many years they did light pressing etc,
It was opersite Barons Court
it was a press shop very dirty work iworked there about 48 years ago the building is still there next to the pub across the road from barons court
Hi janet, did you by any chance know of my nan Gwen Whitehead? I know she worked there for some time.
Interesting that David Oakley remembers Spurrells and Thacker Barrows as being the only purpose built factory’s in the area. Thacker Barrows were located in the brickworks on the Vigo until the late 50’s when they moved over to new premises in Norton Canes, I think he may be referring to the new unit built at Brownhills Sheet Metal, also making wheelbarrows and run by the Thacker family, on Coppice Rd.
Laurence evening…… Brownhills Sheet Metal run by the Thacker Family was, what is now, Barrow Close at the back end of Oak Park? Whereabouts on the Vigo was the Thacker Barrows site? Is it roughly where the Brickworks are now down by Gills the Builders Merchants or more over towards Coppice Lane? Or as usually happens I’ve got it wrong completely? Just asking as a local resident of the Vigo area.
Hi Peter, yes the site was sold and is now Barrow close. Thacker Barrows was located in a warehouse unit within the brickworks toward the Northgate end of the site behind, what is now, the Focus store. The unit had been used for candle wax and sugar storage during the war and had been hit by an incendiary bomb causing a huge fire, the debris from this had to be removed before moving in.
Thank you Laurence, kind of you to respond. All the best
My apologies to Laurence and Peter. For the sake of brevity I omitted to state the precise site of Thacker Barrows to whom I referred, thinking that my earlier statement “purpose-built factory in the Wood” would be sufficient identification. The boundary between Walsall Wood and Aldridge . as I remember it, would put the brickyards and any future development of the sites, in Aldridge. My sincere apologies if they are in “The Wood”. I did mean, of course, as Laurence suggests, the new unit, built some years ago, on Coppice Road, Walsall Wood.
Thanks so much for your helpful and informative replies – as usual, you’ve all excelled yourselves – thanks.
I’ll now take your replies back to the lady who enquires, and see where this takes us. It’s a little bit unusual and quite sensitive, but I’m certain there’s more to come – stay tuned!
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