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Tag Archives: Gerald Reece
There has never been enough attention paid anywhere that I’m aware of to the Victorian father of modern Brownhills, William Roberts – sometime railway plate layer, ganger, brewer, publican, entrepreneur, civic stalwart, JP and philanthropist, William was a very rare man … Continue reading
One enduring subject of very much debate here that continues to receive a lot of attention is the thorny subject of the Marklew family, Marklew’s pond off Coppice Lane, William Roberts and the claim that the farm was one of the last Tommy Shops operating.
Way back last year, Patricia Cotton sent in the above photo of her brother Tony, family friends Dora Rathbone and her son Bob enjoying a picnic and a paddle in 1955 by the canal in Brownhills, aroundabout where the banks of the old clay pit are today.
I’ve received via Facebook from very generous reader Patricia Cotton who’s send a very interesting picture, not just because it’s a wonderful period photo, but because lurking on the skyline is an indication of something being present several people dispute.
Just recently we’ve talked extensively about the Midland Railway through Walsall Wood and Brownhills, and the notorious rail tour that seems to have been the last passenger train along it – but we’ve also discussed local brick making too, and I think this is an excellent time to feature this article by top local historian Gerald Reece.
I keep returning to the subject of the man I consider to be the father of modern Brownhills, the one and only William Roberts – railway plate layer, ganger, publican, entrepreneur, civic stalwart, JP and philanthropist.
I had an interesting email from reader and top local history technician Andy Dennis a couple of weeks ago that expands on a recent topic beautifully: that of William Roberts and his empire.
In a remarkable instance of coincidence, last Friday, reader and top local history ferret Andy Dennis sent me an astounding piece on a lost reservoir near Howdles Lane, in north Brownhills, between Chasewater and the Watling Street.
Yesterday, I received a wonderful email from David Evans, who did such a fine job of organising and hosting Gerald Reece’s talk on Brownhills last Friday evening at the Methodist Church in Silver Street, Brownhills.
The interesting history of William Roberts – the father of modern Brownhills – continues, and this time, Peter ‘pedro’ Cutler has taken issue with some other, intersecting local history, and just when exactly William Roberts came to Brownhills as a lad, and where he lived when his family moved here.
Back to William Roberts, then – railway plate layer, ganger, publican, entrepreneur, civic stalwart, JP and philanthropist – a very rare man in his time, he appears to have been generous, considerate, imbued with a real sense of social justice, and was undoubtedly a sharp-dealing rogue too.
I’m going to share here an absolutely astounding image donated by Brownhills Local History researcher in exile Gerald Reece, which is sure to create some debate – I’m going to be brief, as I feel it’s best.
Well, here it is – not merry Christmas (although that’s bearing down upon us) but the fourth and final instalment of the history of Ogley Hay, as researched and written by local historian Gerald Reece, in his remarkable book ‘Brownhills A Walk Into History’.
Here’s some mapping I’ve been meaning to run since reader Peter mentioned it in the comments to the post ‘Keep out of Cotterill’s road’ on Friday last – I may have posted similar before, but if I have, I can’t find a copy.
Welcome to the third of what was to be a three-instalment series, covering Ogley Hay, the history of Brownhills businessman Charles F Cotterill and the towns evolution into the place we know today, as written by local historian Gerald Reece, in his remarkable book ‘Brownhills A Walk Into History’.
Andy Dennis touches on a sporting phenomena which seems to largely have lapsed: pedestrianism, to which these days, power or nordic walking would be comparable.
I thought that today, I’d dig some interesting mapping out of the archive. In the light of Gerald Reece’s talk on Brownhills and it’s colliery history, I thought this 1884 1:2,500 scale plan of Wyrley Common was due an outing. It shows – in some clarity – the extent of mining in the Engine Lane area at the height of the Victorian period.