There has been a great response to the recent series of articles on local cinemas from an old, long out of print Ned Williams book David Evans has spotted in the huge Gerald Reece collection.
However, a comment made by honorary grandfather of the blog Reg ‘Aer Reg’ Fullelove on the post about Walsall Wood’s Palace Cinema set the cat amongst the pigeons and bit I and the young David Evans are keen to learn more.
Reg had this to say on the Walsall Wood cinema post:
Fantastic reading! May I make one non criticism BLOOD TUB was as I’ve previously said was at the top of Lichfield Road by the Smithy I have recently found a photo copy given to me by a very good friend showing its location bless him…
The Smithy is of course the site today of the pub, Smithy’s Forge.
Now, the 1984 book gives the most complete history I’ve ever seen of the picture houses of the area – including Walsall Wood, and it’s well worth bagging a copy – but you can find the articles on The Palace, Brownhills here, The Palace (‘Blood Tub’), Walsall Wood here and the Regent, Brownhills here – but it does seem that the Blood Tub in Lichfield Road escaped the attention of Ned Williams.
Whilst there’s no doubt the Wood folks called their Palace The Blood Tub, Reg is adamant this was the case in Brownhills too, so I’d like to find out more. He sent this photo to David Evans:
That is clearly Lichfield Road, and what’s more from the railway company bus, it’s pre-Great War. What I’m asking here is which building was the cinema – was it the low building, and if so what is before it?
From conversations David has had with Reg, he seems to think it was an early travelling picture show that settled here.
Does anyone have anything on this curious bit of lost history at all?
Reg also sent the following picture in of a Palace Cinema in Heath Hayes we’re also not familiar with, and we wondered what readers could contribute to the knowledge on that one?
So please folks, can you expand on this topic please? If you have anything to add, please do: Comment here or on social media, or mail me on BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com.
Thanks to David and Reg, and to Ned Williams too, whose fine work set the course for this thread.