A found connection

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.

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Caught short on the Pelsall Road

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.

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Van burglary in Norton Canes: be on your guard, people

My attention has been drawn to a spate of van break-ins in the Norton Canes area of late – friend of the blog Jamie Bailey contacted me this morning and asked me to run the following appeal by his friend, Leane Woolley:
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All hands to the pump!

It’s really getting busy for top local history wonks Dave Moore, Chris Pattison and their Freinds of Sandfields Pumping Station campaign group, who seem to be really getting somewhere with this fantastic Victorian edifice; not only has their attention prompted the fixing of the roof recently, but the listing status of the building is now under review too.
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Saving Sandfields – August meeting tonight

The campaign to save Sandfields Pumping Station in Lichfield for the community continues to garner support. Local historian and activist Dave Moore has been putting heart and soul into this for some months now, and he’d like as many people as possible to get involved.
Sandfieldsl

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Truncated

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.
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Saving Sandfields – monthly public meeting tonight

The campaign to save Sandfields Pumping Station in Lichfield for the community continues to garner support – local historian and activist Dave Moore has been putting heart and soul into this for some months now, and he’d like as many people as possible to get involved.

Sandfields Pumping Station

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Friends of Sandfields – can you help?

The campaign to save Sandfields Pumping Station in Lichfield for the community continues apace – local historian and activist Dave Moore has been putting heart and soul into this for ages now, and he’d like as many people as possible to get involved.
Sandfieldsl

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A memorial to the beam engines…

Here’s something I came upon by chance I think that not just the Lichfield and South Staffordshire Water contingents will like, but all those interested in steam engines, heavy plant and Victorian engineering.img009

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Purity was the gift

A couple of weeks ago, I alerted readers to a preview clip of a film that local historian Dave Moore was making in support of his Save Sandfields Pumping Station Campaign – well, yesterday Dave posted the complete film on the campaign blog.
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A film on the water

Dave Moore, late of this parish and tireless campaigner for all things local and historical is doing something really interesting for his Save Sandfields Pumping Statio Camapaign, and taking a really unique approach.Sandfieldsl

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Next steps – Saving Sandfields meeting tonight!

Following the success of the inaugural meeting called to find a way to save Sandfields Pumping Station in Lichfield, a second meeting is scheduled for this Friday to officially set up The Friends of Sandfields Pumping Station group.Sandfields Pumping Station

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Increasing pressure

Following my plug (and lots of others in the online community) for the meeting about Sandfields Pumping Station and it’s preservation, I was pleased to note that over 40 people turned up to the public meeting in Lichfield last night.

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Saving Sandfields – Public meeting this Friday!

The campaign to save Sandfields Pumping Station in Lichfield for the community continues apace – local historian and activist Dave Moore has been putting heart and soul into this for some months now, and he’d like as many people as possible to get involved.
Sandfields Pumping Station

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Poetry in motion

Apologies to Dave Moore, but he contacted me a couple of days ago about an event he’s putting on at Cafe Fuse, as part of the Lichfield Fuse Festival in Lichfield this afternoon – Dave is, of course, the passionate and educated local historian who’s working hard to rescue Lichfield’s Sandfields Pumping Station from decay.
Sandfields Exterior

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Water, water everywhere and not a drop to drink…

I’m very pleased (and relieved) to welcome back Ian Pell to the Brownhills Blog, with a cracking article about the Hammerich burst I mentioned a few weeks ago.
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A sudden loss of pressure

Chris Pattison has been in touch. Chris, you’ll remember, is the wonderful historian charting the history of South Staffordshire Water, who has made such great moves in helping local historians like myself, Kate Cardigan, David Moore and Ian Pell to bring local water and railway history to life.
Railway Burst 4

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Serving all his days

FIFTY years of unremitting service in the employ of the South Staffordshire Waterworks Company is the proud record of Mr. Joseph Plant, of Christ Church Gardens, Lichfield, who has recently retired as foreman engine driver at the Sandfields Pumping Station.

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Supporting services

It’s been a while since I did a mapping post here on the blog, and yesterday, whilst visiting the open day at Christchurch, in Leomonsley, I saw a huge copy of the 1884 OS map of Lichfield that inspired me. If you ever get chance to see it, do so. A beautiful, A0-size hand-tinted copy, clearly for ecclesiastical use. A thing of rare and immense beauty.

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Gathering steam

The campaign to save Sandfields Pumping Station in Lichfield for the community continues apace. Dave Moore has been putting heart and soul into this for some months now, and he needs a little bit of help.

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Cast in the ground

Here’s one that will be of interest to all. Railway historian Ian Pell has again submitted a beautifully written, intricately researched piece for readers to peruse. Here, Ian presents further great, solid information on the history of the water main and surge stack that ran beside the South Staffordshire Railway through Brownhills.

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Laying some pipe

Local historian and top chap David Moore has been in touch again, to alert me to the fact that he’s acquired some images of the South Staffordshire Waterworks Company water main undergoing maintenance in Brownhills in 1927, which he’s uploaded to his wonderful Flickr Gallery.

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Surging forward

I should have known, really. No sooner had I delved into the fascinating world of the Brownhills surge stack, then Ian Pell, railway historian extraordinaire, had written to me with a whole bunch of new information, clarifications and even a few questions.

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Hiding in plain sight?

It seems like we’re in a period for odd historical tangents and discoveries. It all started with Peter ‘Pedro’ Cutler’s classic bit of gentrified nimbyism from ‘Captain’ Harrison at Aldershaw(e). From there, we alighted at Sandfields Pumping Station at Lichfield, and found a wonderful, but neglected steam engine. We’ve found since, via Peter’s further diligent research, and that of Dave Moore, a chap clearly expert on the matter, that there was a long forgotten water tower in Brownhills.

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Not in MY backyard (1896 style)…

Peter ‘Pedro’ Cutler has been in touch with a lovely quick snippet he spotted in the excellent History of the South Staffordshire Waterworks Company, which is available online for free. It really is an excellent read and deserves wider exposure.

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Wolverhampton and surrounds, 1920 – for @StuDavis

  Twitter user and all-round top bloke Stu Davis asked me on twatter this morning if I could sort a map of Wolverhampton and South Staffordshire like my previously posted Brownhills and surrounds map. Plenty of stuff of interest here, even to non-Wolverhampton folk. The railway bods will have a ball – note the two…

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