There was something on the goods shed


This 1921 Aerofilms image shows what I believe to be the goods shed Chaz remembers; the Bridgeman Street bridge or subway is lower centre, with the street itself running broadly left to right. Image from Britain from the Air.

I get some unusual enquires here, and sometimes the best way to approach them is somewhat obliquely – this is a cracker from the wild man of Clayhanger Marsh, Chaz Mason, who’s trying to confirm his memories of an advertisement painted on the wall of a railway goods warehouse in Walsall, that existed in the 50s and 60s.

I have edited the message Chaz sent me; he’s told me what he thinks the advert was for, and what it said, but I think it would be more useful in this instance to see what was remembered by other people or could be pulled from the archive.

I’ll let Chaz explain:

Hi Bob

I wont to tap into the local history expertise of your readers with a local history enquiry which is a bit unusual..

As you might know I was born on the Pleck Road in the fifties and to get into town we used to walk down Bridgeman Street, under ‘The Subway’ and up to the cenotaph. As we did this two things stand out in my memory. One is some graffiti on the left hand side saying ‘Yanks out of Cuba’ (I have looked for any surviving evidence of that particular bit of social history but to no avail) while on the opposite side of the road (where the car park is now) was a railway Goods Warehouse and that is the source of my enquiry.

Painted on the wall of this building was a huge advert – possibly for fruit. Does anyone remember what it was?

Were you aware of this and if you were, are you aware of any photographs of it? This really came to mind with Jack passing away as I am pretty sure that if anyone had a photograph of this it would be him.

What do you know muka? No rush with a response, I don’t want to add to your load but thought you might be the man to ask.

Chaz Mason

I’d like readers to please wrack their memories for this advert, and see what they can recall. Cheers to Chaz for a brilliant, brilliant question, and for the continual friendship and solidarity he offers. Chaz is one of the longest-standing local bloggers, and although our subjects don’t often overlay, his blog is always top of my reading list.

Check out Chaz’s work here.

In the meantime, if you have any ideas, do get in touch – comment here or mail me: BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com. Thanks.

Untitled 9

This si the same area from a different angle captured by Apple Maps, just after the BOAK Building was demolished. The rail sidings are now the Saddlers Centre and the goods shed a car park.

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9 Responses to There was something on the goods shed

  1. Sean Yates says:

    Hello Bob, I was born in the mid forties, and with regard to Chaz’s query, the only fruit that I can remember being promoted in those days was “Fyffes” bananas.Regards. S.Y.

  2. fb. lycett says:

    Indeed, Fyffes bananas, also remember railway horse working out of there, on the subject of Pleck, anybody remember the graffiti on the canal bridge, “EE-I-ADDIO-POWEL FOR THE PLECK” during local elections

  3. david oakley says:

    Hi Bob,
    Passed that way quite regularly years ago. I agree, the advert was for Fyffes bananas.
    Also remember the political slogan on the bridge. It was there for some years. Powell was a significant Labour politician in those days. Busy little place, the Pleck.

  4. Alan H says:

    Small error in your caption, Bob, for the modern picture. The sidings weren’t where the Saddlers Centre now is. The Centre occupies the site of the old station booking hall and the are behind the shops fronting Park St and Bradford St (inc the Durham Ox and New Inns of happy memory). The sidings and goods shed were on the other side of Bridgeman Street, filling the space between it and Midland Rd. That’s the are circled in green in the old aerial picture.

  5. Alan H says:

    Correcting my last: looking again, I see that there were some further, small sidings where the Saddlers centre car park now is.

  6. alvin cox says:

    i was born on wolverhampton rd opposite the senior boys entrance and i used to go up forrester st into moat rd and cross over into bridgement st to the subway and i remember the fyffes bananas advert in the years of 1949- 1955

  7. John Anslow says:

    I too immediately thought of bananas and have just been talking to my brother, Paul, who confirms that there was a large, faded image of a cheerful West Indian chap (possibly wearing a straw hat) painted on the warehouse wall. This fellow was holding up a hand or two of fruit and enjoining the onlooker to “EAT MORE BANANAS”.

    Paul also recalls “HANDS OFF CUBA” daubed on the railway bridge over Corporation Street West.

  8. “Yanks out of Vietnam” was painted on a wall by the children’s playground in the Arbo for years.

  9. Pingback: The end of the line for Walsall Wood in 1928 | BrownhillsBob's Brownhills Blog

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