What’s wrong with this picture?

Here’s a bit of fun for a sunny Sunday – No 23 in a series of articles arrogantly cocking a snook at inaccuracies in other people’s online local history.

The reader who spotted this (not me!) shall remain anonymous, although I will say they were an early aficionado of Harpers Transport and jelly confectionary.

This stunning image of Walsall Wood Colliery is featured on A Click In Time, Walsall Local History Centre’s photo website.


An iconic image of Walsall Wood Colliery, but not in the era 1900-1909 as specified by Walsall Council’s ‘A Click In Time’ website, for very good reason.

This is photo W03416, and is described as ‘Walsall Wood Colliery, 1900-1909’ – to see the listing, click here.

There’s a reason this date can’t possibly be correct. Can you spot it? Do you know the correct date?

While we’re about it, this image circulates endlessly in local history circles, too. There’s a critical flaw with it – can you spot it? (I’ve seen it from several local historians in the same form, so I think the problem was fundamental):


This is a stunning image, which featured in ‘Memories of Brownhills Past’ by Clarice Mayo and Geoff Harrington. There’s a problem with this image, though, which, to the best of my knowledge, members of the local history community have not spotted. Can you?

And yes, I’m as guilty of getting stuff wrong as everyone else, but at least here, you have the opportunity to correct me in the comments – and frequently do! Have your say: comment here or mail me – BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com.

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12 Responses to What’s wrong with this picture?

  1. Mick Bullock says:

    The bus gives it away,no buses like that at the time they state.

  2. Andy Dennis says:

    There is a pylon in the lower picture.

  3. frederick b lycett says:

    Mick is right about the bus, but it looks like steel railway trucks as well, not sure on the drawing shaft winding frame, looks like it could have been subject to NCB mods, can’t give a date though

  4. Clive says:

    The photo must have been taken before 1957 as the field behind the bus is now the estate where I live. They started to build houses there around 1957 give or take a couple of years.

    • Clive says:

      I have had a look at my paper work, the houses were ready for occupation by 1957. So the photo was taken before 1957 as the field behind the bus is still a field.

  5. david oakley says:

    Hi Bob.

    Walsall Corporation Double-decker bus in the background. Brownhills bus service began on 1st April 1928.

  6. I would say this photo was after the closure of the Colliery in 1964 as there doesn’t seem to be any activity on the site, the coal trucks appear empty and there is no steam or smoke from the boilers.

  7. Pedro says:

    Is the picture of Lindon Close a scan taken from the wrong side of a negative?

  8. Mick Bullock says:

    I worked down the pit in 1956,so it is before the colliery closed as there were no tubs then,they had been replaced by mine cars before I started.

  9. Ian Pell says:

    The top picture is to be found in several articles, most date it as c.1948. There are some further photos taken in 1951 which show wagons on all roads so unlikely taken then. I think the screens were replaced at some time in the early to mid 1950s, this may be a clue?. Interesting to note the dead-end line to the south of the screens. Not seen this on any plans.

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