Walsall Wood Past and Present

The Village of Walsall Wood was a thriving community with a Colliery, Railway Station, busy shops in the High Street, and a variety of industries all located around the Church of St Johns. Sadly over the years the industry and retail shopping have gradually declined.

Situated on the High St, Saint  Johns Church is the focal point of the village.Built with Staffordshire blue engineering bricks in 1837, the church was originally consecrated in the parish of Walsall, but became a separate district in 1845, and was then known as district of St John Walsall Wood.

The Church was extended in 1886 and again in 1896 using ordinary red brickwork. The organ was installed in 1896 and in 1903 a 4 ft diameter clock was fitted in the tower side facing the High Street. A war memorial stands in front of the Church, inscribed with the names of the Walsall Wood people who gave their lives in the two world wars. Also in the Church is a miner’s lamp engraved with the names of the miners who lost their lives in the 1930 Grove Pit disaster.

Saint Johns Church February 2010, in the process of having a new roof fitted.

Walsall Wood was built around the mining industry. Known locally as The Coppy Pit, Walsall Wood Colliery, was opened in 1874

Two brick-lined shafts, each of 15 feet in diameter were sunk to a depth of 576 yards. The cages used to transport the miners to and from the pit bottom, and to bring the coal to the surface, were of 2 deck construction. Fitted onto the cages was a large water tank which was used to remove the water that had seeped into the workings.

A furnace was initially installed in the pit bottom, to ventilate the mine. It was replaced by an electric fan system in 1950.

In the first half of the 20th Century, a total of 1000 people were employed throughout the site, along with 50 to 60 pit ponies who rarely came to the surface.

Each week 6500 tons off coal left the site in Lindon Road. Being adjacent to the Wyrley and Essington canal, coal was loaded directly into narrow boats, for distribution by water. Links by rail were via the Midland Railway line to Aldridge, and a token operated single track line, direct to the marshalling yard at Norton Junction, Pelsall. Details of these railway lines can be found on other pages in this blog.

Like most Collieries Walsall Wood operated its own steam locomotives.

One of the Walsall Wood locomotives was 0-6-0 Lord Kitchener (photo courtesy of chasewaterstuff)

During the early 1960’s, the coal seams gradually diminished, and were eventually exhausted by 1964. The Colliery finally closed on October the 30th 1964.

For a short time after the closure, the mine workings were used to dispose of  Industrial waste from Leigh Environmental, trading as Effluent Disposal.

The site of the old Colliery is now used as an industrial estate.

Some of the original buildings in Lindon Road, have been converted into industrial units.

A memorial to the Colliery,  was erected in January 2010. Standing 60 feet tall the pit head replica is the largest of its type in the world, and stands in Oak Park close to the site of the old coppy pit.

The monument was designed and built by Luke Perry and his team from Industrial Heritage Stronghold.


Another major industry in Walsall Wood since 1775, was the manufacture of bricks. The ground around Walsall Wood is rich with red clay known as Etruria Marl which is used to produce the famous Staffordshire Blue engineering brick. Due to its high strength, and its very low rate of water absorbtion, it was used mainly for foundations, as well as being widely used in the canal and railway industries, for general buildings and bridges. Open cast mines were excavated on the Aldridge side of Walsall Wood to cope with the high demand for this extremely useful  product.

Most major Collieries had their own brickworks, and the Coppy pit  was no exception, when in the 1870’s the colliery and brickworks were opened side by side in Paul’s Coppice. Being adjacent to the Wyrley and Essington canal, 2 basins were constructed, one  for the colliery and the other for the brick works, to enable the end products to be loaded directly into narrow boats, for nationwide canal transportation. Distribution by rail was via the Midland Railway line to Aldridge, and a single track line direct to the marshalling yard at Norton Junction Pelsall. The brick works at Walsall Wood Colliery closed down in the 1920’s. 

Further brick yards were opened around the open cast mines in Stubbers Green, and a rail link cut through Shelfield, to connect with the Walsall to Lichfield line at Pelsall.



There were 6 major brickworks in the area, Barnett & Beddows, Atlas Brickworks, Empire Brickworks, Vigo Brickworks, Joberns Brickworks, and Aldridge Brick and Tile who manufactured the Utopia brick.

Road transport gradually replaced rail logistics and eventually the rail line closed.

There are only two brick manufacturers left in the area now, namely Salverson in Stubbers Green, and Ibstock, in Brickyard Road, who took over Aldridge Brick and Tile in 1965.

The Aldridge branch of the Midland Railway, built-in 1882 to transport freight from Norton Canes and the Cannock Chase coalfields, passed through the centre of Walsall Wood. A station was built on the land now known as Oak Park, adjacent to Lichfield road, and a passenger service commenced in 1884. 

The passenger service ceased in 1931 but coal traffic lasted until 1962 when the line eventually closed.

A children’s play area now occupies the site of the old station.

In 1904 a single track tramway was constructed from the terminus, opposite St Johns Church, into Walsall Town Centre

Lasting until 1927 the trams were then replaced by motor buses.

In April 1951 a more modern bus drives over the narrow hump back bridge at the end of the High Street.

A  footbridge was under construction for the safety of pedestrians to negotiate this dangerous bridge


Photographed in July 2010 the next photo shows how a major reconstruction of the bridge, incorporated a much wider roadway, with a more friendlier gradient, with footpaths on both sides.

One of the latest Travel West Midlands buses, leaves the High Street on its way to Walsall August 2010

Situated at the corner of Brook Lane, and Lichfield road, was a parcel delivery firm. Formed in the early 20th century by Charles Collins, it was originally called Collins parcel delivery specialists

Using a fleet of blue painted Bedford vans, the company offered a daily parcel delivery and collection service, within a 50 mile radius from their Walsall Wood base.

In the late 1960’s Collins Express Parcel Service, as it was then called, formed part of United Carriers. With the head office based in Wellingborough, it had 22 depots in the UK and with 3000 personnel, it offered a nationwide parcel service. Each depot ran a fleet of mainly Bedford vans in the new yellow livery, delivering and collecting in their locality.

A nightly trunking service ran between each depot using ERF articulated vehicles.

Each depot employed a night-shift, of sorter/loaders who ensured that the delivery vans were loaded for the next day’s delivery.

The French company Geodis bought out United Carriers in 1999, and then in 2002 they ceased trading with a job loss of 92 employees at the Walsall Wood depot.

A number of houses have been built, on the large piece of land, made available by the company closing down.

In the days before the extensive coverage of television, entertainment was by means of local cinemas. Most towns had at least one cinema and Walsall Wood was no exception. Situated in Brookland Road, the Palace Cinema, or the Blood Tub, as it was known locally,opened in 1913.

The noise coming from the steel corrugated roof in heavy rain, made it extremely difficult to hear the soundtrack of the film.

The late 1950’s saw the demise of many local cinema’s, and the Palace finally closed in June 1957.

A block of flats were erected on the land, when the cinema was demolished.

Walsall and District Co-op Society opened a store in the High Street opposite the Church, and offered a milk delivery service, using a horse-drawn milk float.

A new store was built on the corner of High Street, and Coppice Road.

It was converted to a self-service store in May 1957.

The  store closed in the late 1970’s.

Walsall Council built a neighbourhood office on the site of the Co-op store in 1981. With the re-organisation of Walsall council the office was closed in 2005. In 2007 Walsall Wood library was re-located from their old building in Lichfield Road into the vacant neighbourhood office.

Education in Walsall Wood was provided by the Lichfield road school of St Johns, which was opened in 1859.

 It was  then relocated to Brook lane in the late 1970’s.

The school at Streets Corner was opened in 1903, with Mr Street as the Headmaster. This is how Streets Corner acquired its name.

In later years, further Schools were built-in the outer areas of Walsall Wood. Castlefort School opened in 1960, and Shire Oak Grammer opened in 1961. Shire Oak Secondary modern opened in 1966, and then later merged with the Grammer school to form Shire Oak Comprehensive.

Apart from St Johns Church, other places of worship have been built-in Walsall Wood.

Built in 1878 on the Walsall Road, between the canal and Hall lane, was the old Westley Church.

In later years the Church was used as a Sunday School, followed by Hawkins & sons, organ factory, and H B Case leather works.

In 1902, a new Westley Church was built-in the High Street, opposite where St Johns surgery now stands.


This was closed in 1959 and demolished as part of the bridge and road development.

On Lichfield Road towards Streets Corner, was the Methodist Church, together with the adjacent Sunday School.

A present day photo shows the Church, standing alone, with the Sunday School having been demolished.

As well as the Co-op, many other shops have come and gone, in the Lichfield Road and the High Street, including the following.

Bayleys ran a shop at Streets Corner.

It was later changed to a Hairdressers, to be run by Mary Bayley, who is the little girl in the above photo. Now taken over by David James, the shop is still in business as a hairdressing establishment.

One of the larger stores in Lichfield Road was Batkins General Store.

Today the building is used by Roadrunner which is a thriving car spares and accessories company.

On the corner of  Beech Tree Road and the High Street was Emery’s Drapers.

In later years it was used by Whynott Cycles, until the shop was demolished and the area landscaped.


Jesse Shilvock ran a small one man cobbler shop for 17 years in the High Street.

After his retirement the shop was taken over by a motor cycle spares company, but a sign outside, suggests that another change of use is on the cards.

Opposite St Johns Church was Headley’s shop.

It as since been used by the Midland Bank, opening Tuesday and Thursday only. Then a pet shop, followed by Ashcroft Funerals and Memorials. When Ashcroft re-located, the building was a fruit and veg shop for a short time before its present use as a sandwich shop.

A small general store in the High Street was originally run by Mrs Boucher.

It was taken over by Mrs Williams, who ran it until her retirement, in the 1990’s.

Today the shop premises forms part of the Drunken Duck’s extension.

Side by side was Bill Holmes Greengrocer, and Don Smith Butcher’s shops. After Bill Holmes retired, the greengrocer’s shop, was run by Don’s wife Chris. When Don & Chris retired in 2005, Ashcroft Funeral Directors and memorials, re-located from opposite St Johns Church, into the two vacant buildings.

On the Walsall side of Don Smiths, would have been the new Westley Church, and Ecob’s Chemists.

Sadly both buildings have now gone, demolished as part of the road and bridge development.

Like most mining villages Walsall Wood has had its share of public houses. In the first part of the 20th Century there were four pubs on the Walsall side of the canal bridge. Standing on the corner of Boatmans Lane was the Boot Inn

On the same side of the road between Boatmans Lane and the canal, was the Travellers Rest.

The Coach and Horses, which was opposite the Travellers Rest, sold Blencowe’s Beer.

The fourth pub in the vicinity was the Horse and Jockey.

The four public houses, were sacrificed for industrial development, and a new drinking establishment, was built on the land behind the old Horse and Jockey. Originally called the Poachers Pocket, it as since been re-named The Horse and Jockey.

The Hawthorn stood in the High Street

After a few changes in name and structure, over the years, it is now known as the Drunken Duck.

Also in the High Street was the Red Lion.

After modernisation it is now known as The Boatmans Rest

Linda Robottom, daughter of David & Lucy Ray who were licensees of the Red Lion for many years, as sent me the following photo’s of the Red Lion and some of the regulars. Actual years when they were taken are not known.

Red Lion 002 Red Lion 003 Red Lion 004

Red Lion 006 Red Lion 007 Red Lion 008Red Lion 001

A more recent drinking house is the Royal Exchange.

Situated in Hall Lane was The Beehive.

Since it closed as a public house, it as been, a Foundry, Flats, and is now an Engineering Factory owned by Niken.

At the end of Hall Lane was the old Black Cock.

A new pub was built, retaining the name, on the corner of Hall Lane and Green Lane.

 On the site of Wally Evans Car Sales, in the High Street, is the new St Johns Medical Centre, re-located from Beech Tree Road.

The old site in Beech Tree Road as been re-developed and a Care Home built.

Since I moved into Walsall Wood during 1971, there have been many changes to the High Street. From those early days, only three business’s remain the same. The Transport Cafe, although having had numerous owners, still caters for locals, and passing lorry drivers, who can park on the lorry park at the rear.

Claridge Electrical still rents and sells televisions and domestic appliances. Sadly the owner Percy Claridge passed away on 30/10 2005.

Last but not least Trevor, who, even after his heart by-pass surgery, still operates his one man Gents Hairdressers, as he as done for the past 40 years or more.

One of the later shops to open in the High Street is the Spar Shop.

The store which includes a Post Office, is a thriving business open from 6-00am, until 8-00pm daily, and is a credit to the proprietors Rash and Lata Patel, who along with all their staff are very friendly and helpful.

244 Responses to “Walsall Wood Past and Present”

  1. D Evans Says:

    It was the Ebenezer Methodist Church that was demolished, not the Sunday School building, which is still standing and is now Walsall Wood Methodist Church. The foundation stone of Ebenezer is incorporated in the wall of the new side building. I think the foundation stone of the very original Chapel is still in the front boudary wall. Ebenezer Chapel was demolished because dry rot had affected the building. The little lad looking at the train is named Barry and he is standing on the Rabbit bridge in Vigo Road…in around 1950 or so.
    An excellent article showing how the Wood has evolved over the years. My congratulations, Oakparkrunner. David Evans

    • pamela evans Says:

      hello , my mame is pamela evans , iam looking for people there that might be related to william and anna evans ,he had a brother thomas , they moved to nova scotia in the late1800;s ,any information would be helpful , ty

  2. Frank Says:

    Great site on Walsall Wood Residents/buildings. Lets not forget our local barber ‘Trev’ he has been a wonderfull servant to the locals for over 40 yrs and a very well liked man.Isn’t it amazing how your town changes, and at times we don’t even notice. Its great to have a site like this to show the past and the present, like or dislike the changes. thanks to oak park runner for your work.Ive only been around 40+ yrs but my father drove trucks for Bressingtons transport up on the right in brooklands road when i was a youth, so i do have some memories.

    • Linda Robottom Says:

      My mother Lucy Ray, used to be Rose Bressington’s best friend, & Evan used to drink in the Red Lion also. We used to go on holidays with Rose, my mother & I,& Evan used to be our Santa for the Local’s children at Christmas, when we gave out presents, & had parties for them. We had a savings club at the pub & used to have parties for the children & coach trips to the sea side, & Christmas meals for the older members of our village. Mom had been known to provide sustinence,in the form of Sunday lunches for our locals who missed their dinners at home, due to the wives having binned them due to their husbands extra few minutes spent over that one last pint, at the Lion. Have many happy memories of Rose & Evan, both. We used to arrange charabangs, where we used to visit Evan’s brothers club in the evenings, after having a day out at either Barry Island, or Porthcawl, in Bridgend, & they would reciprocate by coming to Walsall Wood for a night out. The thing I remember most was the car park at the club, it was so steep that there was a rope that you could hold on to, to haul yourself up to the top of the car park if you were a little worse of ware,after a few bevies in the evening. This happened fairly often as the club was in a dry area of Wales on a Sunday! Also standing up at the end of the night,respectfully for the playing of the national anthems of Wales & England, the end of a perfect day..

      • Nuala Willis (nee Bressingtin Says:

        Hi there,
        just looked at all the pictures and read about the High Street that I remember from my childhood. Such simple, happy days. David and Lucy were such great hosts at The Red Lion. It is lovely to find pictures of my mum and dad- Rose and Evan.
        It was indeed a thriving High Street and a lovely place to grow up.

  3. clive Says:

    Great site mate, brings back alot of memorys of walsall wood when I was a lad, do like like the photos of then and now, works well.
    cheers clive

  4. Keep on running… « BrownhillsBob's Brownhills Blog Says:

    […] Read more at Oakparkrunner’s blog… […]

  5. Nick Says:

    Wow..brilliant. Thanks very much..! Happy memories.. 🙂
    Are the black and white pic of the High Street and pubs ect available in a book or any other form of publication..? Id love to get a copy of a few of them.

    • oakparkpacersrc Says:

      Thanks for reading my blog and your comments. There is a booklet with these photographs in. Entitled MEMORIES OF OLD WALSALL WOOD, by Bill Mayo & John Sale, printed in September 2000 price £4.99. It was sold locally in local newsagents in Walsall Wood and Downes in Brownhills. There may be a copy in the Library. It was printed by COLOUR GRAPHICS Tel 01543 682181. Good Hunting. If you can’t download from my blog I could E mail copies of the photo’s that interest you. kind regards Godfrey (oakparkrunner)

  6. Anne Matthews Says:

    My mom and dad had the paper shop in the high street from 1968-1975
    and i remember taking the pink pappers on a saturday night to the red lion and the hawthrorn pubs and some of the other shops.

    • Brian jones Says:

      Hi Ann,the paper shop in the high street was owned by Beales before your mom and dad,i done the castlefort paper round for 3 years untill i left school in 64,There was Beales who had the red plastic paper bags in the high street,Claytons opposite the school,can anyone remember who ran the papershop at streets corner,i cant.Brian.

      • John CLaon Says:

        Hi Anne and Brain
        My parents used to have the paper shop opposite the school called Claytons and I think the other shop on Streets Corner was Bentons. My mom and dad left the paper shop in 1981 and moved up the roar to next to Roadrunner.
        Hope to hear from you both
        John Clayton

  7. stymaster Says:

    Top post- can’t believe I’ve missed it until BrownhillsBob linked it: I’ll make sure I drop by more often.

    I can just remember the old bridge: I’ve lived in Walsall Wood since around 1994 (so i remember the greengrocers, butchers, and Mrs Williams) but some family have lived in the area for more than 40 years, so I remember waiting to go over the old, narrow bridge. I’m also fairly sure I remember that the bridge at the end of Queen St was still open to traffic in the 70s?

    My neighbours mentioned there was a small shop in Coppice Rd- anyone remember it?

    I’m glad you’ve pointed out where some of the old buildings were: this isn’t clear from some of the local history books.

    • Hayley Says:

      I remember two shops in Coppice Road. The first one was just passed the old public toilets heading away from the High Street on the left-hand side. The gentleman that ran it was a gentleman called Sid. It was a tabaconist/sweet shop. Remember getting off the bus in the High Street and it been my first port of call on my way home from school. The second was further down Coppice Road on the right-hand side and was run by a lovely lady called Connie with the help of her daughter. This was a small but well stocked grocery store.

      • Rita Moore ,formerly Orgill Says:

        There was also an off licence across the road from Connie Hillyards shop in Coppice road , a very old shop run by an elderly lady , I think her name was Mrs Nuttin.

    • Ash Says:

      Hi, I’m 38 now but I used to go to Connie’s shop on coppice Road. She was lovely. My dad was friends with her and he’d call her up and tell her I was going to walk up. She’d stand out on the door step and look out for me to arrive safely, then she’d call my dad to tell him I was leaving and she’d watch me back. 10p mix was where it was at and she’d always help me choose what I wanted. All that time and effort for a lad spending 10p 🙂

  8. oakparkrunner Says:

    Thanks for your comments, the bridge at the end of Queen Street was open in the 70’s, we moved into the Wood in 1970 and I can remember driving over it.(not often it was a bit hair-raising). Regarding the shop you mention in Coppice Road, there was a tobbaconists just inside on the left, where the library car park is. I seem to remember it was called Twists. Also further down the road was another small shop on the other side of the road,(painted White), a very small working mans club, and Craddocks Wholesale.

  9. Nick Says:

    Hi again….Regarding the pics. Ive downloaded from the blog but the quality is poor if I want them any larger than they are here.
    Im not sure if they would be better if you e.mailed me one (to try)..but if you have time to do it that would be great.
    Im interested in all the B+W pub pics…and the Tram in the High street at Walsall Wood….Thanks. nick@fjellnett.no

    • Linda Slaney Says:

      I remember from my childhood a seemingly bottomless lake called the Vigo pool which used to scare me to death. A school friend drowned there in the sixties. Is it still there?

      • Terence Millership Says:

        filled in now, and a small mountain of landfill planted with trees and shrubs on top of it

  10. John Says:

    Fantastic snapshop of history previous and now. Do you have anything for Beechtree Road. Also the lorry park has now gone may be this needs updating on the web. Thank You enjoyed the journey.

  11. Jane Radford Says:

    I was thrilled to see my Great, Great Grandads Public House on here, The Travellers Rest, and his name above the door John Wesley, his daughter May was my Great Grandmother, and my Grandad was born on Coppice Road. My grandad was always proud of his Brownhill Roots!

  12. Sue Oliver Says:

    Does anyone have any photos or knowledge of the grocers shop that used to be at 110 Wood Lane Pelsall. It was run by Minnie Morgan in the 1940s/50s and before her by her father James William Morgan. I think the buildings have now gone in Wood Lane. James William was my great grandfather and I’m researching Morgan family history together with Sadler, Hand, Preece – all ‘in-laws’ of the Morgans

  13. D Evans Says:

    The Black Country Museum in Dudley has an almost identical copy of Ecob’s Chemists, complete with a tin of Brilliantine in a glass case, though its scent has been lost. Well worth a visit. I think it may be mentioned on their website.
    The Spar shop was the other chemists/post office. Michael Smith helped his father who was the chemist many years ago.
    The story was that the cobbler paid his rent for the shop throughout the last war while he was in the armed services. Dr Roberts and Dr Lillywhite ran their surgery in Beech Tree Road. A nearby cul de sac is named after Dr Roberts. The cul de sac has old folks bungalows!.. It is called Roberts Close!
    The bakery in the High Street was owned by Smith, I believe Whitehouse owned the gents outfitters next to the bakers shop

    • Alison Says:

      Dr Roberts delivered my mother Margery Moseley nee Ensor in 1928. He signed my grandmother Sarah May Ensor nee Whitehouse’s death certificate. He also delivered me in 1964. I think I have heard my mother mention Dr Lilywhite also.

      John Whitehouse my great grand father gave his milk round to my grand father William David Ensor – I’m not sure what year that was – I believe before the second world war. There is a story of grand dad talking to someone and Tiny the milk cart horse getting into the front door of the bakery and eating buns off the counter.

      Sarah May Ensor (nee Whitehouse) father was John Collins and her mother Sarah Elizabeth Collins. Sarah Elizabeth’s mother was Mary Ann Collins but we don’t think that she knew this as she always refered to her grandparents Charles Collins and Maria Cooper as her parents. Does any one know if these Collins were connected to the delivery people or any infomation on these families.

      • Nina Warren (Williams) Says:

        I remember Dr Lilywhite, I was a very little girl when he retired and Dr Dingley took over. I lived in the Wood from the age of 6 to 38. My Mom was caretaker at Walsall Wood JMI and we lived on Streets Corner

    • Brian jones Says:

      hi again dave.i was in the church choir back in the early 60s with michael smith and his dad,along with mr crutchley and his son,the vicar was rev evans assisted by cannon edwards

  14. Pat Cross Says:

    Hi, I enjoyed all the old photos, remember them well.
    The Royal Exchange is not a recent pub as you suggest, and that verandah is awful! I was brought up there and the pub was known locally as Cross’s back then. The building on the far left used to be stables.
    I have traced back to my great great grandmother who was publican there in 1861.
    We left there in the early sixties but that was my childhood.

    • Trevor Anslow Says:

      Hi Pat
      I’ve been talking to my sister Pat Anslow, she says the two of you have been in touch. As I am 3 years older than her, I have a few more memories such as going to the Exchange garden party to celebrate the queen’s coronation. We left Walsall Wood to move to Walsall in March 1954 but used to visit our nan (my dads mother) most Sundays , she lived at 107 Lichfield Road and my father Dennis would walk down and have a few beers at The Exchange, we then caught the bus back to Walsall. Later I occasionally would go for a drink with my mother and father on a Sunday evening to Coleshill where my dad had found that your father kept the Swan Hotel.

  15. james williams. ( Ron ) Says:

    fond memories of Walsall Wood..I drove for collins parcels in 1960,/ 61.. In the 50’s I was in the Boys Brigade based in the chapel opposite collins depot…..

    • oakparkrunner Says:

      Thanks for reading my blog, my two brothers also worked for Collins, and would have been there in the 60’s they are Jimmy and Peter Hucker. Kind regards Godfrey (oakparkrunner)

  16. Terence Millership Says:

    This is a reat site, very interesting. Its amazing the changes that have occured since my wife and I moved here in 1968.

  17. goodcuppa Says:

    I wonder if it is possible if you know when the Beehive was turned into flats. My grandparents lived at the Beehive. I have photos of them outside it. It still has the publican sign above the door. Did they help turn it into flats. or was this done before they moved in. I wonder?
    Also I see a photo of where the Wesleyan church used to be. I do not know if you are aware, where the steps are going down to hall lane, this was a small road, and my great aunt and her husband used to have a shop on the corner of it. this is an area I have yet to research. Hope you don’t mind me asking you about the Beehive. I have traced back to the first publican, but I am finding it hard to find anymore out. I must go to the archives in Walsall when I am next down in the area. I assume they will have details on it there.

    • oakparkrunner Says:

      I am afraid I cannot answer your question on the beehive being turned into flats. I can only remember it being flats and I have lived in the Wood since the 1970’s. Reading your blog reference living on Clayhanger or Clonger has it was known by the locals, I lived up Coppice Side by the Jolly Collier pub and attended the Clayhanger infants school in 1946 until 1949 when I went to Ogley junior school. I remember Jack & Alice Wickson very well and and the other names you mention from the village. Regards Godfrey (oakparkrunner)

  18. Alan Mills Says:

    My local parish church, St John’s, Walsall Wood, is celebrating its’ 175th anniversary this year. Clearly, many of the photos you have on this page would be of great interest to local people who are celebrating this special milestone in the church’s history.
    Not wishing to use your photos without permission, I wonder if you would allow us to include in a display information and images from this page to enhance local understanding and appreciation of the part played in the local community by St John’s since it was consecration in 1837?
    There will be no intention to sell prints of any of the images, but just to incorparate them in an exhibition available to the public to view.
    If you wish to ask any ore about our plans please email me at the address given below.
    Many thanks,
    Alan Mills

  19. Rev Ken Paskin Says:

    Thanks for a lovely hour spent reading the history and looking at the pictures. Was born in Beech Tree Road in 1944, opposite the police house and was a choir boy at St. Johns; later became a county policeman before going into the church. Remember Collins where used to work in school hols, the railway station where used to return moms Grattan catalogue stuff to, the old steam train ran behind our house. Smiths the chemist which was also the post office, Mrs Williams where used to get my sweet allowance and the old fish n chip shop near Ecobs, he used to do up old bikes, mine smelt of fish for years. Would like to know more of St Johns 175th and any folk of the 50’s who still around. Rev Ken Paskin

    • Brian jones Says:

      Reading your memories takes me back,i was also a choirboy as i stated on an earlier page,lived nextdoor to post office ,the house backed on to the doctors in beechtree road,he had a big orchard,we used to climb over the wall and scrump the apples and pears,also mr seaneys back garden where there was a big cooking apple tree,we loved it.The rev evans and cannon edwards was in charge then,we had 2shillings for a wedding and 2/6 for a funeral,and a trip to weston super mare each year,i sang solo at the the carol service each year with someone named Milton shelley i think.The organist was a mr wollverston ( again i think ) with a mr crutchley as stand in,choir practice every wed night at 7 oclock. I live in dolgellau n wales now.due to come back and see friends soon,should i drop in the church to have a look,or leave my memories as they are.Brian

      • Milton Shelley Says:

        Hi Brian,
        I have just come across this site, many years too late I know, yes you are right with the names rev Evans & Cannon Edwards plus the organists. My grandad was also in the choir John Richardson, great times.
        Milton Shelley

  20. K C Says:

    I’ve just moved out if the flat aboue the Boucher/Willams shop. If only walls could speak I’d proberbly have some lovley stories (and gossip) to tell you all!

  21. j cartwright Says:

    does anyone remember len and gladys jackson who ran the hawthorn pub in walsallwood sometime in the late 1950s

  22. Sue Oliver Says:

    Does anyone remember the grocer’s shop which used to be in Wood Lane, Pelsall? Owned by Morgan family. It may have been a ‘Tommy Shop’ (associated with the pit). It’s not there any more but I remember it in the 1950s. This was my maternal grandfather’s shop and it was passed to his daughter Minnie Morgan – later Croome.

  23. I Tipper Says:

    Belting page Mr Runner. I was born in 1969 and spent my whole childhood/teenage years in Walsall Wood. The earliest shops I remember was the bicycle shop on the corner of High Street and Beech Tree Road, Charlesworths News agent and the Photographers.

    I remember shopping at the Co-Op with my mom long before Tesco and the like.

  24. david oakley. Says:

    My first visit to the blog and how very worthwhile! Born in Walsall Wood in 1930 I was fascinated to see so many old scenes that I well remember. The little shop in Coppice Road belonged to Sid Maxwell in the ’30’s and 40’s and was a “lock up” at the time, with Sid travelling by bus from somewhere in the Willenhall area, The club in Coppice Road was always known as “Merrick’s” but was kept by Mrs Humphries in the 1950’s.and properly named The Coppice Road Social Club. I was a member there and still have an old subscription card signed by the Secretary.
    I was surprised but delighted to see a picture of the old “Palace” in Brookland Road, as I remember it as both a patron and later as an assistant projectionist. Ned Williams, the author of “The Cinemas of Aldridge and Brownhills” was unable to find a picture to illustrate his article on the “Palace” but there it is!! The picture was apparently taken before the fire, after which the front was rebuilt.
    Having left the area many years ago I have only to close my eyes to see “The Wood” just as it was between the 30’s and the 50’s.
    My grateful thanks..

    • Alison Says:

      My Mum was born Margery Ensor in Walsall Wood in 1928.Her paternal grandmother was Elizabeth Ensor nee Oakley her father was James Oakley who married Jane Keeling. Are you by any chance related to those Oakleys?

  25. Viv Arnold Says:

    My first visit to the blog too. I was looking for Walsall Wood articles to print off for my mom who was born there in 1930.
    She lived in Salters Road opposite the pub, where the row of shops are now. She moved to Coronation Road when she was about 10 yrs old.She married at St Johns and went to the two local schools.
    Us three girls were all Christened at St Johns and were also at The Church School and Streets Corner, my two younger sisters
    going to Shire Oak 1966 and The Grammar 1970.
    She can tell some tales. She was only telling me a week ago about her, Stella Tenant, Nancy Mills & Gordon Arblaster going exploring
    over the fields opposite her house and swimming in the ‘ Clay Hole’
    with all the neighbours looking for them. Gordon Arblaster getting a smack around the ear from his dad.
    I remember most of the shops and the coop with the money whizzing
    about through the – I think – compressed air tubes, and the garden parties on the field at the back of the church.
    Mom is still registered with Walsall Wood Surgery although she has lived in Brownhills for the past 45 yrs. She will love everything that is on this blog. Our family names are Ethelstone, Price, Harley & Arblaster and my great grandads name is on the war memorial in St Johns Churchyard.

  26. david oakley. Says:

    Hi Viv,
    How interesting to hear from someone from Salters Road in the 1930’s. I remember those cottages quite well. was your mom’s name Joyce Ethelstone ? George Price was another name to remember, while Gordon Arblaster lived in the first council house past “Buckley’s shop” Mrs Price, an elderly women even then, always wore a black shawl. I lived higher up towards the Vigo in the new council houses built in 1933. Dr. Roberts would be your Mom’s doctor even then. Happy days

  27. David Oakley Says:

    Hi Alison
    Well, its a small world, as they say, but it can get even larger. Both Ensor’s and Oakley’s are both old Walsall families. Both lived in Brownhills Road Road in the 1850’s but Elizabeth Oakley owned at least four plots of land. My own descendants lived in the old cottage next to the “Streets Corner” cottage of Mr. George Street.. There was a David Oakley of 1828 my own great-grandfather but your own research knocks that quietly on the head. Sadly, I have not researched my own family. There was one other Oakley in the village in the 1930’s Mary Bayley, the hairdresser had a daughter who married an Oakley. Did the Ensor’s have a milk round in the 1920’s/1930’s, or have i got the wrong one ?

    • Alison Says:


      It was my grandfather who had the milk round. His name was Wiliam David Ensor (Bill) that was back in the days of the horse drawn milk cart his horse’s name was Tiny. Grand dad Ensor got the milk round from his father-in-law John Whitehouse.

      I was born on Brownhills Road in 1964 just up from Streets Corner across from the school. We lived next to Sam and Ethel Warrington (ethel had a little shop in the house) Sam was a cousin to my Mum. We lived there with Bill and his brother (a well know drunk in the village) until grand dad died and we moved to Australia in 1970. My brother Paul was born in Sheffield in 1951 (dad was from Sheffield) and they moved back to Walsall when grand dad got sick.

      David Oakley who was born about 1872/74 was the son of James Oakley and Jane Keeling.

      I’ve done a fair bit of family research, but there are still some holes, if you like, email me and i can give you access to my family tree at ancestry.co.uk. You can have a look then and see if the familes link up (think they all do at some stage). I will be going to Adelaide in a couple of weeks so will ask Mum if she hasany more details . . . any questions you may want to get me to ask her?

      Take care


      • Marguerite Morris Says:

        Ethel Warrington was my Brown Owl at the Church Hall Pack. Once a small group of us camped out at the back of her house in the garden for a couple of nights when we were guides.I think my mum might have taught your auntie Janet. Did she go to St John’s school. I think she was one of the ‘big girls’ mum taught needlework. I was still in the infants then and used to go and wait for her in the Juniors as we finished earlier. [Mrs ||Holdcroft,we lived on Shire Oak Hill]

  28. The Irish question « BrownhillsBob's Brownhills Blog Says:

    […] above photo, which appears in one of Oakparkunner’s glorious blog articles, shows the view from VIgo Road towards Brookland Road , with the main cemetery to the right. The […]

  29. David Oakley Says:

    Hi Ali,
    What a surprise !! Australia eh ? Long way from Brownhills Road, Walsall Wood. I have moved “next door” by those terms , merely to Scarborough, North Yorkshire, to enjoy my retirement, but still a “Walsall Woodie” at heart. Seems we are too close not too have a relationship on the Oakley side, although these co-incidences do occur. Does your mom recall any of those old times ? There was a house a few doors away, brimful of Oakley’s, Four lads and a girl, Muriel Oakley. Regarding the Ensor’s, I knew them quite well “Cag Ensor” was probably your grandfather’s nickname and yes, I remember the horse and cart quite well. I remember My parents buying an organ when I was a youngster and who “shipped” it to them ? Why, the Ensor’s of course. Was there a Janet Ensor, born about 1933 ? Further rambles on the blog may be shortened if I send my e-mail address, which is davidoakley06@aol.com. Armed with a little more evidence we shall soon sort this out. In the meantime I have sent out Oakley re-inforcements Two Oakley girls who have moved over there to take up SpecSaver’s franchise’s. Best wishes to you’re mom and to you,

    • Alison Says:

      Hey David

      Will email you soon.

      Yes Janet was my Auntie – Mum’s younger sister. She died in 1997 whilst having an operation for stomach cancer.

      Mum is still pottering along and I’ll definately have a chat with her when I see her in the next couple of weeks. She remembers quiet a lot of things about growing up and living in Walsall Wood.

      “Cag” was my Mum’s uncle – he lived with us until we emigrated,his real name was Arthur although i don’t think anyone called him that.

      will write to you soon over the email and send you a invite to the family tree. . . you might be able to figure something out there 🙂

  30. Viv Arnold Says:

    Hi David
    Yes, my mom was Joyce Ethelstone. Its her birthday on the 20th and I was looking for info on Walsall Wood to print off for her when
    I came across this blog.
    Mom has a great knowledge of Walsall Wood and Brownhills and is
    as sharp as she ever was.
    My Aunt Rose and Uncle Amos also lived in that row of cottages
    swapping with George Price (Son of the George who died in the
    first world war) as Georges family was so big and Rose and Amos
    had no children and had a bigger house. All you had to do then
    was go to the council and tell them you were exchanging houses
    and that was enough. Mom moved from 147 Salters Road to 2,
    Coronation Road when she was about 10/11.
    I cant wait to show her the information people have on this blog.

    • T Forrester Says:

      Hi my name is Tom, my mother was Beatrice Ethelstone, your moms sister. Unfortunately, my mom passed away a few months ago. Since then with the help of my granddaughter we have been doing some research on the family when we came across this article in which you also mention my late auntie Rose and uncle Amos. This was really interesting because we have come up against a brick wall as far as my grandparents (George and Rose Ethelstone of 2 Coronation Road) was concerned.

  31. David Oakley Says:

    Hi Viv,
    Bet your mom. Joyce, can still remember Coronation Road before it was built (1937) behind Salters Road there was a Council tip, quite low-lying with several pools. We would paddle there. It was gradually built up by tipping and Coronation Road was built there. I think you lived at the Brookland Road end, near to Jimmy Garrington who would be about your mom’s age. I was a great friend of George Price, a lovely quiet man who went on to become a bus conductor or driver, later in life. Does your Mom remember the big funfair that used to visit the “field” by the “Brickies” ? With Double Summer time it was light until midnight in the war years, I left Walsall Wood for Scarborough, North Yorkshire some years, but the memories remain undimmed and I am in my 80’s, a similar age to your mom, and luckily, I can still see Walsall Wood exactly as it was in the ’30’s and ’40’s. So very glad she is going on okay, best Wishes.

  32. janetslee Says:

    Just found your blog through Viv Arnold.great to read.
    I went to school with Viv in the 50’s and 60’s.First at St Johns Primary School in Lichfield Road, in fact l lived next door to it.
    My father owned Gordon’s Removals. Second School was Streets Corner. My family moved to North Wales in 1966 where l still live today.
    Great to bring back memories.
    Janet Craddock. Now Slee

    • Brian jones Says:

      hi janet,nice to here comments from the wood.i lived next door to the postoffice in the high street,went to the same schools at the same time,your dad moved us to our new house in poxon road on the castlefort est in 1960 in his big green van,i moved to dolgellau when i retired,still remember higgs,s shop opposite the school,and the lollypop lady was mrs roe who lived in coppice road,nice to read your comments look foward to reading more.

    • John Clayton Says:

      Hi Janet, nice to hear from you, I use to live opposite you at Claytons Newsagent.
      Please keep in touch
      John Clayton

      • janetslee Says:

        Hi John
        It’s been a long time since l used to call into your parents shop but Loved it. I used to go to Lichfield with them when they went to the wholesalers. Happy memories

    • Marguerite Morris Says:

      Janet, I remember you well. My mum taught you at St John’s,Nancy |Holdcroft. Mum and Dad lived on Shire Oak until 1984. Moved to Cannock Chase. \Mum died in 1993,Dad only in 2019.

  33. Mal rudd Says:

    Lovely photos of Walsall Wood. I hope someone can help me. Has anyone photos of King Street Progressive Club and Institute, 27 King Street, Walsall Wood. The club was first opened in 1932 and this year celebrates its 80th year at the end of July. I would like to get some photos and information together so that I can display it in the club as part of our celebrations. Please email me if you have any information.

    Mal Rudd

    • David Oakley Says:

      One of the earlier members of the club would be a Mr, Jack Tolley who was probably a member there from the early 1930’s. Jack was a kindly man, a Knife Grinder by trade who liked his pint
      Jack was born in about the 1860’s and was a stone breaker as a young man. He lived nearby and would often entertain us kids on his accordion. I seem to remember King Street Club as a very small building on the corner of King Street and Queen street, in the 1930’s so am pleasantly surprised to find it still in existence after such a long time. Every success.

  34. david oakley Says:

    Hi Janet,
    Great blog with some great, old photographs, showing pre-1930’s and the modern Walsall Wood, just right for us exiles !! I was particularly interested in two of your comments – Gordon’s Removals took over the house that had been vacated by Mr, Hayes, the School Attendance Officer in the 1930’s/40’s, while his neighbour was the fearsome Mr. Boot, Headmaster !!. I removed to North Yorkshire from the West Midlands later in life and although it wasn’t the same firm I retained Gordon’s Removal’s for the move and they did an excellent job for me. Best wishes.

  35. janetslee Says:

    The photos bring back memories,such a shame to see the old School boarded up. Would love to take a trip back sometime to see all the changes.

  36. david oakley Says:

    hi janet.
    Remember it ?? big, rough, boy’s playground facing the main road, girl’s playgound at the rear, facing the Infants school, looking at Google Earth and all the changes made in the last 50 years or so, ‘fraid you’d get lost. Looks a pleasant place to live, though, Pity the school is semi-derelict. Haven’t been back since leaving. plenty of nostalgia, though !

  37. janetslee Says:

    Yes l remember it well, l used to play on the common at the back of the school , my friend Ann Martin used to live in the School House next to the School, her mother was the caretaker.
    Also used to play tennis at oak park and the swings and roundabout were my favourite. Remember the co-op on the corner and the newsagents opposite our house. Many memories are flooding back

  38. david oakley Says:

    yes, the common behind the school backed on to the Oak Park grandstand. Playing field comprised baby swings, big swings, frying pan, giant stride, two joywheels, helter-skelter, boat, six leapfrogs. Tiny old newsagent shop named Higgs opposite your house. You stepped down to get into the shop. You have look at the modern photo you see where your Co-op disappeared to.. Happy days.!

  39. David Evans Says:

    HI Viv
    does the name Dunning mean anything to you or your mom?
    David Evans

  40. irene robinson nee russell (claytons granddaughter) Says:

    what a lovely hour to spend on your site bringing back old memories has anyone got any photos of the coronation celebrations at shire oak or anniversaries at walsall wood methodist or springhill chapel in the 40s 50s or 60s i was born at sandhills 1941 and my daughter at shire oak 1963 i remember my mom and mrs williams collecting each week for coronation funds and mr frank hall making a bench which was unveiled by someone from the archers it was placed on the bank at the cross roads for years we held the party on the field which is now patterson place

  41. Trevor Brown Says:

    Hi Irene If you go to Brownhillsbob Blog and have a scratch around a bit you will find some photos and stories of the Methodist Church,Boys Brigade etc
    They are in local stories,Hope this helps,
    Trevor Brown, formaly of Shire Oak Hill, now Brisbane AUS

  42. Walsall Wood’s lost beer houses: an exploration by David Evans « BrownhillsBob's Brownhills Blog Says:

    […] This raises the possibility that the Horse and Jockey Inn, listed in White’s directory in 1834, was also a farm. Certainly the Highfields farmhouse of a few years ago looked to be much more modern than the 1834.  The Horse and Jockey Pub original building is shown in Oakparkrunners blog article, ‘Walsall Wood Past and Present’. […]

  43. Ken Paskin Says:

    Brian, yes the doctor was Dr. Roberts in my day and living in Beech Tree Road, surgery (old bungalow) was just opposite and he had two (or three) boys and we got the apples too, must have been a big tree. He was a ‘Villa’ fan, I was a ‘Baggies’ but always remember the Harpers coaches pulling up outside church on a saturday lunchtime, but never got to go until joined the force and got in free.
    Last Saturday in March (especially if it was Easter) was a good day for weddings, could do 5 0r 6 nice pay day; but always remember the funerals for the men killed in the pit disaster.
    Surgery has certainly changed and so has church, but for the better in many ways, but still miss the old cricket ground between it and the canal embankment, where we could chill out on a sunday afternoon. I have retired to the ‘Peaks’, after Police service and then 30years in church ministry, but still call back when visiting sister as mother Beattie Paskin died last year.
    Be nice to hear from anyone who remembers me, the old St Johns School or church etc.. Ken Paskin

  44. janetslee Says:

    Hi Brian
    We’re we in the same class at school
    I have forgotten most of the names of the pupils in our class now.
    I went back to Walsall Wood a few years back,passing through on business so l couldn’t stop but the St Johns school was all boarded up and looked in a sorry state.
    I too live in North Wales near Prestatyn. Move with my parents to Rhyl when l was 16.
    Only kept in touch with Vivian.
    Nice to have all these memories

    • Brian jones Says:

      Hi Janet,nice to here back from you,can your remember Ann collins,her dad had the parcels warehouse on the corner opposite the royal exchange,i was in the same class at school,they built a new school at the back of collins;s in brook lane.we used to go on the common at the back of the infants at lunch time,but never herd the bell ring and got back late,sent to the headmasters office,forget his name ,but he smoked a pipe with bruno tobacco in it,you could smell it all through the school.those were the days.Brian.

    • Brian jones Says:

      Hi again Janet,do you remember Ann collins,her dad owned collins parcels,opposit the royal exchange,she was in the same class as i was,we used to play on the common at the back of the infants at lunch time,but never herd the bell and always got back in school late,sent to headmasters office many times,cant think of his name,he smoked a pipe with bruno tobacco,you could smell it all through the school.oh happy days.Brian

  45. Alison Rothery (nee Moseley) Says:

    Ken – I’ll speak to my Mum next time I call her. She was at St John’s and I believe that she was in the choir. Her name was Margery Ensor before she married.

  46. David Evans Says:

    HI Oakparkrunner
    my article “Where the streets have a name” which is published in BrownhillsBobs Brownhills blog, gives the origin of the name “Street’s Corner” in Walsall Wood, which may interest readers
    My other article, “Divine Water”, may be the one that shows the last Mrs Street to have lived in the cottage..picture probably taken at the time of her husband’s funeral, 1889, I think.There are two original photos; one shows the older lady seated with a younger man standing by her. The first occupant of that cottage appears in the 1841 census, and a Street name is in 1801 Moleseleys dole for Walsall Wood. The entry for 1841 shows the Mr Street in that thathced cottage was a nailer.
    There was also a Mr Robert Street, who indeed was the first headmaster at the school in early 1900s. He lived in a house on Shire Oak hill. This may be where the confusion arose.One of the pipes of the Ebenezer refurbished organ( early 1950s) is dedicated to his memory. Details are in Brownhills Bobs blog,Ebenezer commemorative booklet. articles.
    kind regards
    David Evans

  47. joanna dukes Says:

    hi all, i was born in 1968
    i was bought up in poxon rd, went to castlefort jmi, moved to holly lane, went to shire oak, i remember at the bottom of wolverson rd, opposite the red post box, there used to be a little corner shop, i think it was called ‘holmes’s’?? then we had a chemist, then photograph shop, hairdressers, its been quite a few different shops, over the road, where the factory shop now is, it used to be a supermarket called ‘meadow market’ then it changed to kwiksave, above those shops there used to be an hairderessers, which is now the ‘learn to dance’ place. behind there where fitness first is, used to be a working mens club ( or a club of sorts), then it was ‘dream’ the nightclub. up of salters road there was another working mens club, that got burnt down, behind there a kids park, atthe bottom of brookland rd, just off there, there was a little hut used to learn judo there ect…many more places i’l remeber, if anyone has pics of anything iv mentioned please send them me.

  48. joanna dukes Says:

    also at the back of our house in holly lane, was the ‘sand hills’ some of its still there, and there was a pool we called the ‘pump house’ iv never known why? if anyone can fill me in on this. on streets corner at the bottom of shire oak hill, there used to be a little outdoor shop, cannot remember what it was called though. then there was the vigo quarry, spent many a day down there hanging around getting filthy lol, now filled all in which started around 1993 if i remember right.

    • Phil norwood Says:

      Hiya my name is Phil Norwood, I was born in Walsall wood 1958′,
      I lived in blakemores road, I remember all the places you have mentioned, the outdoor was whittles wines, we had loads of fun over the sand hills, loads of memories from my childhood days

  49. brian jones Says:

    Can anyone remember the craddocks who lived in coppice road,i went to streets corner school with a John Craddock early 1960s,any thoughts ?

    • Paul Owens Says:

      I recall john Craddock ,he was head boy at WWCSS when I started there.he also played in the first rock n roll band I ever saw the’Scarfells’ at walsall wood working men’s club Lichfield road ( on the site of the fitness club opposite oak park)

    • Alison Rothery Says:

      My mum used to talk about the Craddocks my brother would remember better than me.


  50. janetslee Says:

    Hi, he was no relation to me (Janet Craddock) Lichfield Road, next to the old school.

  51. brian jones Says:

    Hi JAN.can you remember who lived in the bungalow the other side of the school from you.i can just remember a lady who came out every break time and gave us sweets,think hard.

  52. janetslee Says:

    Hi Brian
    I can’t remember her at all. Do you know what plans they have for the old school. It’s such a shame to see it all boarded up. I only visit about every 20 years or so and everything looks so different.
    I used to be friends of the Martins who lived in the school house, caretakers of the school. Ann was a year younger than me and her brother John

  53. stymaster Says:

    The old school has had a multitude of plans submitted. I think we can be sure that whatever happens, the school building will be demolished, as it’s probably beyond repair. The old schoolmaster’s house seems to be getting a refurb as a Co-op nursery, but given the state of the attached school, I can’t see that being a long-term thing.

  54. john golby Says:

    as you went over the old canal bridge in high st there was a blacksmiths i went to with my granddad have you any photoes

  55. David Evans Says:

    Hi John
    in BrownhillsBob blog; posted July 15 2012, “Walsall Wood- a short history by Margaret Brice” booklet may have a photo of the blacksmiths, Jacksons. Perhaps this is the one?
    David Evans

  56. Brian Says:

    hi dave,is there a robert oakly in your family should be about 40ish.i worked with him at hickinbottoms bakery in wenesbury in the 80s he did say he remembers an uncle ira is the same family

    • david oakley Says:

      Hi Brian,
      Yes, you are quite right. Robert is my son, he is 50 this year, and now lives in Stratford, London, working for Newham Council in one of the libraries. I still think he is in touch with one or two from Hickinbottom’s. Think one lives in Wales, nowadays. He will be pleased that you have enquired about him. I’ll pass it on. He is on Facebook, if you want to try your luck. His Uncle Ira (my brother) went to America for about ten years, but he’s back home again, living in Merthyr Tydfil.
      David Oakley.

  57. Brian Says:

    Hi Dave,thanks for the info. ill go on facebook see if i can track him down,let you know what happens,Brian Jonesl

  58. Brian Says:

    Hi Dave,no luck tracking Robert.next time you speak to him ,ask him to get in touch with me via this page thanks Brian.

  59. Bryan Preston Says:

    Hi, I was born in Walsall Wood in 1946. My Dad was the Coop chemist in Aldridge and then he opened his own shop. Jack Preston. For a short while he had a second shop in Walsall Wood and I remember Ecob’s. Used to cycle down to the canal and Stubbers Green and also remember the mine and of course the enormous brickworks. What was the name of the firm that made crisps? Big square tins of them. Living in Cornwall now but still following the exploits of the Wood and the Saddlers.

  60. Bryan Preston Says:

    Jones’ Of course. When I moved to Cornwall in the 60s I used to take tin boxes with me. Everyone loved them. I was born in Castle Road and used to drink in the Manor arms when George ad Eileen Cod and young George were landlords. Happy days.

  61. Ken Paskin Says:

    Hi Bryan yes Jones crisps were famous they sourced their potatoes from farms at Shire Oak, stonnall and around and cooked them in good old fashionned deep fat lard. The same as they used at the fish n chip shop next to Ecobs, which made them taste so good. Mind you the bits of old bikes he used to cobble together and sell also smelt of it for years. Oh memories…… Ken Paskin (Beech Tree Rd. – now Matlock)

  62. Brian Jones Says:

    i was born and bred in walsall wood,a lots been mentioned about the beehive foundry,but i cant remember where it was,please help

    • oakparkrunner Says:

      The Beehive foundry was in Hall Lane Walsall Wood. It was a public house before it became a foundry. It is now an engineering factory and is called Niken House. kind regards Godfrey (oakparkrunner)

  63. Brian Jones Says:

    Does anyone remember Peter Male.lived next door to the post office in the high street in the 50s 60s,he had a sister called theresa who was a nurse,mom s name marjorie ,dads name jack.can anybody help thanks,Brian.

  64. Brian Jones Says:

    Thanks Godfrey,was catshill foundry at the bottom end of linden road by the anchor pub.Brian

    • oakparkrunner Says:

      Yes Catshill foundry was in Linden Road about 100 yards from the Anchor pub, on the side of the canal next to the canal junction (Catshill Junction) which went to Chasewater or Norton Pool as it was called years ago. Regards Godfrey.

  65. Brian Jones Says:

    Another one for you Godfrey,the coppy woods

  66. oakparkrunner Says:

    Hello Brian the only coppy woods I can recall would be the Coppice Woods in Brownhills which where adjacent to the road Coppice side, off Pelsall road. These woods were lost when Potters Clay & Coal Company opened their open cast mine for clay and coal. It was used as a tip for a short while after Potters finished but is now waste land, and nature is slowly reclaiming it. Regards Godfrey

  67. Ken Paskin Says:

    Hi, ken paskin here, the coppy woods were on the back road from hall lane and step hump back bridge to shelfield came out by their old tin church which was replaced by a new one. The coppy was on the righthand side and we got our holly and mistletoe from there. It is still there. Ken

  68. Brian Jones Says:

    Hi Ken,thats right it is down hall lane,the top school used to use it as part of the cross country run when we had p.e.i was in Walsall wood in august,lots of changes lot less shops than there used to be,one time you could buy anything in the wood,but this is called progress,is it for the better?.Brian

  69. Susan metcalf Says:

    The horse and Jockey was run by Joseph blakemore. my moms Uncle. He was her dads oldest brother. (harold blakemore)He had three sons, Vi, Denis and Jack. Jack married Jessie Blakemore (no relation!), they had a daughter Josie. mom remembers her sister Nora’s 21st birthday being held there. mom is called Doreen Woolley nee Blakemore and has lived in Walsall Wood most of her life. Mom and her younger sister, Yvonne were members of the Girls Life Brigade. I joined the girls brigade In my teens, and also took part in Sunday School anniversariesinside the Methodist Church..

  70. Ken Paskin Says:

    I remember the Blakemores well, believe Doreen and Yvonne were in the Girls Brigade with my sister Margaret (Sylvia) Paskin, now Bensley and living in Simmonds Way, Shire Oak. The Horse and Jockey now a much larger modern carvery, back in the day they used to have whippet racing round the back, that’s where my father Tom Paskin met mother Beattie Paskin, they then lived in Beech Tree Road where I was brought up. Ken Paskin

  71. Sue Oliver Says:

    Hello Walsall Wood bloggers.
    Does anyone have information or photos to do with WOOD LANE from years ago? I’m interested in the GROCERY SHOP that was there at 100 WOOD LANE (now demolished and has houses I think). My MORGAN ancestors ran it and lived there – first my great grandfather James William MORGAN, then his daughter, my Gt Aunt, Gertrude (known as Minnie) MORGAN later married to become Minnie CROOME. James William MORGAN was also involved with PELSALL VILLA FOOTBALL CLUB.
    If this is not the correct site for this enquiry I apologise and perhaps someone could direct me to the correct place?
    I have also had no success trying to contact Pelsall Villa FC for info about my Gt Grandfather – can anyone out there help me at all? I’m in Australia so difficult to visit! Thanks very much!

    • Linda Robottom Says:

      Sue, I’m not going to be of much help on Billy Morgan, except to say that his name was William, and that he lived in the first house opposite the “Red Lion”, by the butcher’s. Bill used to come in the outdoor for a pint, & he was a lovely man that was always laughing and joking. He, if I remember rightly was an electrician by trade, & I think he worked at Claridges, in the High Street. Cannot be of much more help than that unfortunately. Linda Robottom.

      • t_forrester@sky.com Says:

        Hi All, Does anybody remember the Ethelstone family that lived at i think it was no2 in Coronation road, in 1940 or 1950, only that was my late mothers family. My mothers name was Beatrice.


      • Sue Oliver Says:

        Hello Linda. Thanks for your reply. I don’t think its the same Morgan family. My Morgans worked at the Colliery or in the Grocer’s shop inn Wood Lane. No electricians as far as I am aware. A cousin Tom Morgan still lives in Wood Lane I believe but I have lost touch with him. My Gt Grandfather James William Morgan had something to do with Pelsall Football Club. Thanks for your help anyway! Sue.

    • Joe Headley Says:

      Hi Sue,
      I don’t know if the little extra information I can pass on will be of any help but I remember Billy Morgan very well, as Linda says he was an electrician. His wife’s name was Lou and he had two children the eldest June and his son Robert. Lou worked for my Dad for some time and I was in school at St Johns church school with Robert who would be in his mid sixties now. Sorry I can’t be of more help

      • Sue Oliver Says:

        Hello Joe. Thank you too for your reply. As mentioned to Linda I don’t think its ‘my’ Morgan family. If you would like to read my reply to her you will see the other info regarding Pelsall Football Club, the Colliery and the shop at Wood Lane which no longer exists. Thanks for your help though!

  72. Brian Jones Says:

    im still looking for Peter male lived next door to the post office,some of you woodies have got to know,please try your best

    • Joe Headley Says:

      Hi Brian,
      Only just found this site but I remember the Male family rather than individual members. I recall Mr Male used to work at the brickyard if I’ve got the right family and I’m pretty sure I have. I remember the house clearly it used to have a long covered entry. I was born at 19 High St. Headleys Grocery shop, Harry Headley my dad. Sorry I can’t help more if I’ve helped at all!

      • Linda Robottom Says:

        I remember you Joseph! I used to go to school at Hydesville with you… I remember your Dad also, & the shop. You were a prefect when I was there, & I a young girl, in the juniors. I can still remember you in your school uniform!! So there! I hope you are keeping well, best wishes from Linda Robottom nee Ray, Lucy & Dave’s daughter from the Red Lion. I can still remember the lovely smells in your dad’s shop.

      • Joe Headley Says:

        Hi Linda,
        I remember you very well too and I nearly added a reply to your first post but never thought you would remember me. I was ever grateful to your Dad for all the lifts to school much better than standing waiting for the bus on freezing cold mornings.
        I am keeping well thank you and trust you are doing likewise, its always nice to hear of someone remembering the old place. I put quite a few photo’s of family and the shop on Brownhills Bob’s Blog, they may still be there if you want to take a look. I trust no one on this site will take offence at me plugging Bob’s site.
        Best wishes Linda.

      • Linda Robottom Says:

        Glad to hear your reply, didn’t think you would get back so soon. We must be psychic. Would have liked to see some photos of Walsall Wood Cricket pitch, I remember that you played a bit also, if my memory serves me right! Only one I have is of a ragamuffin child,me, & a long suffering dog called Sally, that was dressed up to the nines, by me again,having a long distance view behind of the cricket pitch from Dad’s garden at the Lion. If I remember rightly there was an old pavillion that stood at the back of St John’s church, before a much larger one was built at the bottom of the path leading down to the cricket pitch from High Street. I remember the fields behind the crcket pitch being flooded, & I used to catch tadpoles from there. Am just now looking at a picture of a very young Joseph at a party upstairs in the Lion. I have some photos which Old Walsall Woodians might enjoy of some of the regulars that used to frequent the pub on occasions, if i knew how to upload these! Plus a couple that show rush hour in the Wood in the 1960’s. Lovely to hear from you, Linda.

      • Joe Headley Says:

        Hi Linda,
        Your post evoked tremendous memories, to be honest, most of which I have actually forgotten! The cricket pitch was a great asset to the village if not for cricket for playing on! I think the old club house or at least the one I remember was sited at the bottom of the access lane from the High St., between the church and the Co-op butchers and I’m fairly sure the new building was more or less on the same site but I stand to be corrected. There was a paddock behind the church where I think they built the new vicarage, dad used to turn the horse out there that was used to deliver groceries again before your memory span.
        You mention in an earlier post Sgt Bennett; do you remember Mrs Jones the cook at Hydesville? She was Sgt Bennetts sister in law.
        Your photo of me at the Red Lion, at a party is positively frightening! I cannot for the life of me recall that, I hope you’ve reserved the copy right!
        Your recollection of the ground along the bottom of the canal from the cricket pitch towards the Black Cock Bridge is most accurate, it was always very wet and now there are houses on it! My uncle owned a part of it about at the rear of the off-license in Coppice Rd., I don’t expect you’d remember that but there we are.
        I’ve no idea to help up-load the photos you mention but I guess you would need to contact Oakparkrunner who would then post them. I have a lot of memories of the “Lion” and its clientel and would love to share them with you. I would like to ask Oakparkrunner if he monitors these posts to pass on to you my e-mail address but if that doesn’t happen I can only say thank you for your correspondence, its brought back a lot of happy memories, your mom and dad I remember so well and of course the “Lion “was Dad’s watering hole too.
        If my e-mail is passed on and you don’t get a reply I’m out of the country from 1st to 6th of October.
        Its fantastic to be able to correspond with you after all these years and I sincerely hope that you will receive my e-mail address and we can continue the dialog.
        Best wishes and kindest regards

  73. tom Says:

    would anyone know which part of Birmingham collins parcel office was in,have a relative driving me mad to find out.
    thanks in advance

  74. Ann Cross Says:

    Hi Tom, there is a picture in a book by Jan Farrow which says that apart from Lichfield Road Walsall Wood, the other address for Collins was 12 Jennens Row, Dale End B’ham. The phone number was Central 6256!
    Hope this helps.

  75. Dave (Eddy) Edwards Says:

    Sorry folks….nearly got it right

  76. tom Says:

    thank you ann
    i only remember walsall wood from the 1960,s even then it was a thriving place

  77. tom Says:

    hi alison
    thank you,i remember a few of the collins[not many] from the 1960,s onwards
    regards tom

  78. darrell terry Says:

    darrell terry, loved the photos

  79. Kelvin Watkins Says:

    The miner’s lamp in St. John’s church has nothing to do with Grove colliery but has the names of miners who lost their lives at Walsall Wood colliery and miners who have since died through mining related diseases. As a matter of interest it is 50 years since the colliery closed on 30th October 1964. Is there any commemoration service planned by St.John’s church,Walsall Wood ? The last memorial service for the miners killed in the 50’s was a great success with the church filled to capacity. Both my father Bill Watkins & myself Kelvin were employed at Walsall Wood colliery.
    Myself along with my friend Keith Stokes were the last two lads to be set on at the colliery before its closure.

  80. Ken Paskin Says:

    Hi, Ken Paskin here, could you let me know if they do do a 50th commemoration service, was a choirboy at the funeral of the miners and missed out on their commemoration. Also my Golden just before that date. Ken

  81. trevor Brown Says:

    Hi, my name is Trevor Brown, I lived in Castle Rd untill 1950 next door to Keith Stokes, is Keith still around?
    Regards Trevor Brisbane AUS

  82. Brian Jones Says:

    Kelvin Watkins and Keith Stokes are two names i recall from my class at the top school in 1964.

  83. Ken Paskin Says:

    Kelvin remember playing with you and your elder brother, Royston, is he still around, remember me to him. And the birthday parties at your place at the back of the old cobblers. remember he made us new studs for our old football boots out of left over leather bits. We lived up Beech Tree Road, backing unto the railway line, which doesn’t exit anymore, as neither does the waste piece of ground we used to play on, now the car park. The fairground used to come there twice a year too, and we used to search the grass after it left for any dropped pennies from the slot machines. How times change. Ken Paskin

    • Linda Robottom Says:

      Mr Paskin,I have been researching a branch of my father’s family & came upon a James Bromley Derry who was the son of Wilfred & Sarah Ann Derry nee Bailey. He married an Ada Paskin, could it be a relation of yours? They married in 1919. Wilfred’s father & Mother were Frederick & Louisa Derry, who at one point lived on Linley Hall farm, at Stubber’s Green. We may be distantly related! Anyway I also remember the fair coming to the Jockey fields in my youth, & I can just about recall certain shops in the High Street, opposite the “Lion”, Archer’s electrical store where I bought my first Singles in vinyl no less, Firkins cake shop,& a painting and decorating shop at one point,in the same row. Mr Arthur Hands engineering workshop on the land, behind Garbutt’s butchers,(where my father used to help out originally, before he took over completely after Mr Hands retired to Llandudno), & a regular, Billy Morgan who lived in the house the other side of the driveway. One shop used to be a Chemist at one time. And many happy hours playing Space Invaders, at I believe it was, Con’s Cafe opposite! Went past the old school site, cannot believe how many houses cum flats are being built there! Final memory Sliding down the old railway cutting banking on an old tin tray as a child!!! Linda Robottom

      • Sue Oliver Says:

        Message for Linda Robottom: Hello, I see you have mentioned a Billy Morgan in your reply to Ken Paskin. Do you know any more about him please? I am related to the Morgan family of Walsall Wood/Pelsall and wondered if Billy Morgan could be William Morgan – a family name. My Morgan family (James William and then his daughter Minnie had a grocery shop and also lived – at 100 Wood Lane which is no longer there. Other names in the Morgan family are Croome, Preece, Sadler. If anyone knows any of these names I’d be delighted to hear.

  84. Brian Jones Says:

    Kelvin Watkins, was his dad on brownhills council in the 50s/60s

  85. Linda Robottom Says:

    I remember purchasing a book on Walsall Wood by Bill Sale, which had a photo of the Red Lion in. The people that ran the pub had been mentioned but it was incorrect, the photo had been taken whilst my mom and dad ran it, probably in the 1970’s, as the pub had an Ansells sign outside. My mom, Lucy,& dad,David Ray were tenants at that time, & when they first moved in the pub was under Ind Coope’s ownership.They ran the pub for over 33 years. My mother had also lived previously at the Black Cock with the Holland’s, Ray & Eileen, and also at the Queen’s at Pelsall with Ray’s Mom & Dad. I grew up in the village and remember the Wesleyan Chapel on the bridge, which after it’s removal had for a short while a tyre firm on the land which burnt down, accidentally, after the tyres were set alight, if I remember well on a bonfire night. I used to play on the cricket pitch as a child, and once remember Sergeant Bennett, chasing us, when we had hidden under some tarpaulin thinking that he hadn’t seen us, and remember the Air raid siren being tested at the back of the Coop. Originally the pub had outbuildings behind that were stables, and which my father had as his bottling store and became his garage also when he bought his first car. Next door was a row of shops, houses flanked the other side originally.The shops were Alan Beamand, shoe repairer, Bill Smith’s Fishing tackle, & Michael Wheeler, Ladies Hairdresser, amongst others.

  86. David Oakley Says:

    Hi Linda, Nice to meet you. I was delighted to see this post, as I remember David and Lucy so very well, being a seven-a week customer for the whole of their time at the pub. Those were great days. The pub was Ind Coope when they moved in, previously it had been under the tenancy of Billy Burton, who was ‘past his best’ to say the least, with about three regular customers, David and Lucy were like a breath of fresh air in the gloomy place and set about rebuilding the clientele with their own sheer hard work and personality. With a good pint once more being offered, and a good, organised darts and domino activity, the pub fully realised its potential and was packed most nights Thanks to Lucy, sandwiches and pigs pudding went around the pub on darts and domino match nights, and were much appreciated. The perfect host and hostess. I never witnessed any unpleasant scenes in the pub, although like every pub, it had its share of troublemakers, after a pint too many. You could never fall out with David Ray, too nice a guy. David supported his pub teams, home and away, and coined the phrase,”Remember the Alamo” !! when his side were up against it, which became a battle-cry from the team when a member had got off to a slow start, and induced a strong effort to pull the match out of the fire. David lived for his pub, and the pub lived for him, so much so that it was always difficult to clear the pub, after time, After two or three fruitless efforts, David would call out,” You can stay here all night, yer buggers, but you’ve STILL got to go home. Yes, we’d still to go home, after the warmth and friendliness of four hours in the Red Lion, on one wanted to leave.
    If I remember correctly, David and Lucy went on to keep the Black Cock, a black day for the Red Lion, but nothing lasts forever, and the happy memories of those days are still with me.

    • Linda Robottom Says:

      Thank you for your kind words about my parents, who kept the Red Lion, in Walsall Wood, David & Lucy.It’s lovely to hear from someone who was a regular, they would have loved to read your post. Mom & Dad had been at the Black Cock working there before they went to the “Lion”,with Ray, & Eileen Holland. They retired from there in the early eighties, & moved into a flat at Street’s Corner. Sadly both are no longer with us, so it was bitter sweet to read your rememberances, but thank you anyway. Sorry It took so long to post a reply but I got there in the end! Linda Robottom

  87. Margaret Cooper Says:

    Hello, I am Margaret Cooper (later married and now have a surname of Hajdu). I was born in 1930 in a caravan in Sandhills. At 6 weeks old I moved to 118 Hall Lane, Walsall Wood. My father was Philip Cooper (born 1906 Walsall Wood) and my mother was Lucy Cooper (also nee Cooper!!) (born 1905 Walsall Wood). We lived at Hall Lane with my Grandmother (My Dad’s Mother) Sarah Jane Cooper (nee Herrington). I had an elder brother, Philip and three sisters, Doreen, Maureen and Jean. I went to school at St John’s and Walsall Wood Secondary Modern. My son is typing this out for me and will be happy to pass on any regards should anyone remember me. I’ve really enjoyed having the above entries read to me and can remember quite a few of the names mentioned.

    • Steve Says:

      Hi Margaret

      I am not certain whether you know or are related to some people I know. My girlfriends grandmother was Dorothy Alice cooper (married name perrins). She lived in hall lane and her mother was called Sarah Jane cooper. My mom also lived in hall lane to I think Audrey shaw,moved then to Vigo road.

  88. Margaret Cooper Says:

    Hello Steve, my name is Tony and i’m writing on behalf of my mother, I’ll give her a ring in the morning and read your message to her.

  89. Margaret Cooper Says:

    Hello again, Steve.

    Spoke with Margaret (mom) today and she informed me that Dorothy Alice Cooper is (was) her Aunty. Small world! She also remembers Audrey Shaw.

  90. Steve Says:

    My girlfriend said that her farther would be your moms cousin Jim perrins.thanks for reply

  91. Brian Jones Says:

    can anyone remember the jones family from poxon road 60s/70s?

    • colin Says:

      hi brian yes spot on moved to oak road from the cottage when I was in junior school I think ???? do you remember the parkes or the smith’s from the high street? or the blakemoores from over the road had a big building

      • BRIAN JONES Says:

        Hi again Colin,are you still in the walsall wood area,lots of changes have taken place.hows the rest of the family.Brian

    • colin Says:

      yes not far now live in brownhills by chasewater all family ok lost mom irene a few years ago and my dad earlier this year but thats the knock on effect of getting old i suppose nice to hear from you and anyone else that remembers the goulds colin

  92. Margaret Cooper Says:

    Hello Steve,

    Thanks for the information. If your girlfriend would like to speak with my mother I’m sure she’d be delighted. Drop me a line to porkynash@blueyonder.co.uk and I’ll give you her number.

    Kind regards


  93. Brian Beard Says:

    fantastic , proud to say i was born in walsall wood in 1970 in sally ward drive, some wonderful pictures and have brought back some wonderful memories .. thank you

  94. Jo lelai. Says:

    Hi I worked in Walsall wood in about 1956/7 at ]Walsall Conduits there was a place called Barons Court next to it,later called the Water Splash.I also had friends in Brook Lane their surname was Fisher,does anyone remember them or the places.

    • Marguerite Morris Says:

      It was the Water Splash night club and strip club before becoming Baron’s Court ,and I first remember it as the Primrose Transport Cafe.

  95. serenevanscharrington Says:

    Hello, My mother is a relative of Bouchers who owned the general store we have been looking for an image of the old shop for years, is there anywhere I can obtain a copy of the image? This is a wonderful site that has provided a trip down memory lane. Thank you

  96. Alison Rothery Says:

    Just to let the older and middle aged Walsall Woodiens know that my Mum, Edith “Margery” Moseley nee Ensor passed away on 12 July and her funeral was held today.

  97. Dave (Eddy) Edwards Says:

    Hello Alison
    Sorry to hear of the passing of your mum. Are you any relation to Michael Moseley born c1945 and was in my class at WW Sec Mod (the old school @ Streets Corner)
    Dave (Eddy) Edwards

  98. Beth Bailey Says:

    Lovely to look at all the pics of Walsall Wood. I was born here in 1982 and lived in Queen Street for 13 years before my parents seperated. My mom ran the Sunday School at St John’s where i was christened and confirmed and sung in the choir. I went to castlefort JMI. My dad also lived in the Wood in the 1950’s in Wolverson Road. Lots of fond memories of my years in the Wood. After living in Wiltshire for 12 years, I am now in Brownhills. Hope to see some more pics soon.

  99. rachel jhonson Says:

    hi i am only 26 so do not remember much of walsall wood but i lost both my parents before i was 14, and have not been intouch with the family (extended ) since,. i would very much like to find out more about my parents, My fathers name was Brian Pratt ( Was known as jimmy) and mother was Lavinnia Yates (known as viney). my father lived in walsall wood since his birth he would now be in his 60’s i believe. I do not know where my mother was from but i know it was the chasetown, brownhills side. both were married before and had children from previous marriage. if anyone knew them i would really appreciate hearing all about them as i have no link to them and do not really remember much about them thanks

  100. Trevor Says:

    what was your Dads first name Beth we may know him,
    Trevor ( Hovis) Brown

  101. lillyfern50 Says:

    My dad is Robert Gray. He has 4 brothers , Bill, Ron, Doug and Peter and a sister Judy.

    • colin gould Says:

      hi lillyfern50 I know the grays ron the boxing promoter and dougy I worked with at the coop butchers Walsall wood ron would often take me in is car to deliver meat

      • BRIAN JONES Says:

        HI COLIN.i saw your comments in an early blog ,i remember your family from down the wood you lived nextdoor to us by the hawthorn pub. i can remember some of your family such as COLIN ,BARRY WENDY,and i think your moms name was IRENE. you moved to the corner house in oak road i think ,let me know if im;e on the right track BRIAN JONES.

  102. Louis Lillywhite Says:

    What an excellent site! Brings back memories as my father was one of the local doctors mentioned in some of the earlier posts. We first lived at 117 Castle Road, next to the Jellings (?) shop and then moved in 1954 to 39 Castlefort Road (house is now a care home) as the open ground there was developed. Holiday jobs included a loader at Collins (2s 6d an hour) and a receptionist in the Beech Tree Surgery (no appointments, long queues stretching out of the door at opening time and no nurses). Used to play on private land on south of Castle Road (unless chased off it) where an old ammunition dump was said to have been (tried exploding some disused 303 cartridges once – luckily unsuccessfully) and in the ‘sand hills’ at the back of Holly Lane (‘Danger – Keep Out’) which was unfenced and good for scrambling. .

    A lot of the photos bring back memories – old library where I spent much time, Street’s Corner where I caught the bus to Lichfield, to the Grammar School, and as a 12 year old I was allowed to cycle everywhere, to Rushall via the Brick Works, to Clayhanger via a rough road and Aldridge which then had a cinema. There was what at the time seemed to be an excellent cycle shop in the High Street, which along with the Barbers are the only two shops that I recall.

    Just about remember the pit – remember my father having to attend an accident there. Not mentioned were the ‘prefabs’ on (I think) Vigo Road used I believe for those bombed out of their homes in Birmingham in WW2.

    As I said – great site.

    • Trevor Anslow Says:

      Hi Louis
      I wrote an article in April, since then my sister has found the full version of my birth certificate, which although we lived at 111 Lichfield Road and I was my parents first child, it states I was born in Castle Road.I know doctor Lillywhite and doctor Roberts were our doctors (my mother told me about one of the doctors chasing me around the bed trying to examin me when having whooping cough.
      My question is can you through any light on why I would have been born in Castle Road rather than at home in Lichfield Road. It is strange how you want answers once our parents aren’t around any more
      Looking forward to any sort of answer
      Trevor Anslow

      • David Oakley. Says:

        Hi Trevor,
        You were probably born at Mrs. Craddocks Maternity Home at 30 Castle Road Walsall Wood. The building is still there, with its distinctive blue-brick wall at the front, that was there in the 1930’s .Up to the 1940’s most babies were born at home, but the war signalled a change in this tradition, and Mrs Craddock’s was one of the first private Maternity homes in the district. Prior to setting up the Maternity home, Mrs. Craddock and her husband kept a small farm almost opposite the big, rambling buiding which was then privately owned. I left Walsall Wood about 60 years ago, so had to rely on Google Earth to find out if the building was still there, I was born in 1931 in Salters Road.
        David Oakley.

  103. Bryan Preston Says:

    Hi Louis, remember your Dad. I was born in Castle Road in 1946. My Dad Jack Preston was the chemist in Aldridge. First for the Coop at 13 Anchor Road next to the Avion cinema where we lived above the shop and then he had his own business in Portland Road. For a short while in the 60s he opened another shop in Walsall Wood. We use to cycle down to Stubbers Green and along the cut which we were always forbidden to do.remember the prefabs and the brickworks at the Vigo. I went to grammar school in Lichfield as well on a Harpers Gloria Deluxe double decker from Aldridge. Always breaking down and having accidents. Live down in Cornwall now but come back up to watch the Saddlers and follow Walsall Wood FC on line.

  104. Kenneth Paskin Says:

    Hi Bryan, yes remember you and school at King Edward VI, but do you remember the little old fish and chips shop on the corner at the Vigo, all in fat…………………. and the old ladies on the canal boats outside the brickworks or coming up from Walsall Wood Colliery. But of course in those days it was the AVAN cinema, compared with the old tin shack we had in the Wood. Ken Paskin

  105. trevor Brown Says:

    Hi Louise Dr Lillywhite was my Doctor when I was a kid, I also was born and lived in Castle Rd in 1944.
    Trevor Brown

    • t_forrester@sky.com Says:

      Hi Does anybody remember a family by the name Ethelstone, who lived in Coronation rd during1940, only my mother who’s name was Beatrice died earlier this year, and used to live there with her parents and two sisters named Joyce and Rose, i was born in 1942 and lived and went to my first school there for a spell. Tom Forrester

  106. Ken Paskin Says:

    Hi Linda, Yes kind of related, Brom and Aunt Ada were my only known relatives on my dads side until we started to research after dad died, because he wouldn’t allow us to before then. My dad was born in 1913 but was given away at birth to old Tom Paskin and his wife of 78 Lichfield Rd, Shelfield and was bought up there with Ada as an elder sister and another adopted child Edna, but unfortunately, Mrs Paskin died in the flu epidemic in 1918, so they were mainly brought up by Brom and Ada who married soon after and lived there too. They could not have children. Brom later damaged his leg in a work accident, never worked again and had to have the leg cleaned and bandaged every day until he died to stop it going gangerous.
    We lived in Beech Tree Road, and I loved the railway embankment too, but mainly for all the creatures that lived in the drainage ditch at the bottom, which I collected and took home, sadly kids no longer have such simple pleasures.
    Thanks for filling in a blank in the family history, if we can help you with any more details please let me know, am on facebook. Ken Paskin

  107. colin Says:

    hi does anyone remember the old cottage next to the hawthorn pub or the goulds that lived there ideal scrumping grounds from the back garden to the doctors in beechtree rd

    • BRIAN JONES Says:

      hi again Colin,i remember us all in the back garden of a evening the owners of the hawthorn had a daughter who used to sit on the wall and talk to us .cant remember her name ,can you recall us going up the coal yard to fetch cwt of cobbles in my dads wooden barrow on a saturday morning .heavy old thing that was ,use to tip it in your cellar by the front door,opposite your house was a shop called Tills next door to Blakemores can you remember the pet shop buy the canal bridge every time it rain it flooded,then Colmans chip shop we can go on for ever.coming back to see our friends in oldbury soon ill have a ride round to see how its changed let you know what i think Brian

  108. colin Says:

    ok brian let me know what you think of the old wood can’t remember the landlord daughters name ! but the old chippie come bike shop run by micky cole and the old ecobs the chemist ah memories colin

  109. Brian Jones Says:

    The name i was trying to think of was Diane Jackson thats going back to the late 50s and mrs williams shop the other side of the pub and clariges the other side of the post office Brian

  110. Elaine Hamilton (Holyman) Says:

    Hi does anyone have any information re James’s hardware shop and Stones veg shop I believe salters road/ Vigo road / corner Walsall wood? I think they were in business until the late 1920’s Also opposite where oak park is now Yeomans shop that charged batteries? These were shops owned by my great grandparents.

  111. trevor Says:

    Elaine, Try brownhillsbob site someone may be able to help you if you don’t have any luck here, most woodies are on both sites, they are both brilliant at helping you out,
    Cheers Trev (Hovis).

  112. Karen Says:

    Great site but can anyone help me with finding any photos of the walsall wood labour club my grandad George brown was very much involved there hope someone can help Thank you

  113. Sue Oliver Says:

    Thanks for your enquiry Karen – I would be interested in that information as well!

  114. Vicky Says:

    Hello I’m trying to find a photograph of my Dads house. It was on Lichfield Road, Walsall Wood and was demolished to build Oak Park leisure centre. Any help would be much appreciated.

    • Brian Says:

      Hi Vicky,i can remember the old row of houses on the lichfield road .Mr Langford the choir master used to live in one of them,i came from the lower end of the wood so i didnt know alot of the streets corner crowd.Brian

  115. Vicky Says:

    Thanks Brian, I’m pleased you remembered the houses, I would love to see a photo of them, my Dad who lived there is 75. I think they were demolished in the late 60’s.

  116. vivarnold Says:

    Hi Tom Forrester…Sorry I haven’t been on this site for a while. Read your first post and your most recent one giving your email address last night so will email you regarding the Ethelstone family of Coronation Road, Walsall Wood.


    Hi Viv,
    Good to get a reply from you , i had given up hope of anybody responding, my Mother who passed away nearly 12 months ago her name was Beatrice Ruth Ethelstone, before getting married of course.
    I have found out since she passed away that she was married once, before she married my father, so i think there could be a lot i dont know yet.

  118. vivarnold Says:

    Hi Tom, can’t contact you through the email so can you email me then i’ll re-send some family photos. vivian_arnold@hotmail.com.

    I did have a message from David Evans asking if the name Dunning meant anything to either me or my mom. Mom said her cousin Beryl Price married Doug? Dunning and she thinks they emigrated to Australia. Long time since I last read this blog but I’ll stick with it now. Sorry if the info is a bit old Dave.

  119. Trevor Anslow Says:

    I have enjoyed reading these posts, now for something different.
    I was born at 111 Lichfield Road and went to the infants school at Streets Corner until 1954 when we moved to Walsall. The only recollection of school was the headmaster was a magician.
    The row of 5 terraced houses were demolished years ago , but at 115 lived Vic & Rene Lee , my aunt Violet Taylor moved into 111 when we left, & at 107 lived my nan Annie Anslow. She cooked for Jack Bates the butcher on the corner of Lichfield Road & Salter Road, also working there was Ethel Warrington, my father Dennis Anslow was a good friend of Sam Warrington ( from Alison April 2012) Below my nan’s house was a house, now demolished where Mr & Mrs Russell lived and below that Bates off licence, across the road next to Bates shop was Jacksons shop.When Jack Bates retired he had built the bungalow on that corner plot. I used to travel by bus from Walsall to see my nan and play with David Bates, that was when they ran the Butcher’s shop.My mother’s family were William & Eva Hall they lived between St Johns church and the canal bridge.

    • Reece Marklew Says:

      Hi all…My grandparents Dennis ‘Sandy’ Hughes & Frances Hughes lived at 2a in Coronation Road from the 50’s until 1988 then moved to the flats at the top of Brookland Road. My grandad sadly passed shortly after & my Gran Frances sadly in 1994. My uncle Ken Hughes lived in Stewart Road. Does anyone remember them..My uncle and my Grandad worked for United Carriers and my Grandad also had a lot to do with Walsall Wood Football Club

  120. Dave (Eddy) Edwards Says:

    Hello Reece.
    I remember both Sandy and ken, I started at Collins Express as a van boy in 1961 and went on to be a Depot Manager. My maternal grand parents (the Merricks) lived in Brook Lane right by the depot.
    My mom Vera Merrick later Edwards new them both. They were both gentlemen.

  121. David Oakley. Says:

    Hi Reece
    Knew your granddad and grandma very well, as the Hughes’s lived opposite us in Salters Road in the 1930’s .
    Sandy or Dennis, to give him his real name, and his brother Billy married two sisters, Rebecca (Becky) Cowley married Bill, and Francis (Power) Cowley , married Sandy.

    The Cowley’s lived in Aldridge Road (up the Vigo !). I was very close to Bill as a youngster, and we used to go for long rambles in Hobbs Hole and other country places, generally with a crowd of younger kids. Bill was a popular leader, and seemed to know the name of every bird we saw. A truly great mate !!
    Sandy must have had the loudest voice in Walsall, a right foghorn. A lot of us supported Aston Villa, and as we stood in our particular spots in the 40,00 crowd, we could hear one voice from the other side of the ground, above the crowd, shouting “come on, Villa” !!! We looked at each other, and said in unison, “Sandy” A tough guy, on the outside, but a heart of gold, inside.
    There was an elder brother. Horace. Both worked at the brickyard at the time. Bill went to Brookes and Orton in Walsall and became Chief Sawyer, before moving to Collins, were he worked as a Night Loader, before his sudden death at the early age of approximately 39. Sorry to hear of the deaths of your granddad and grandma. No many of us left, now, from that area of the Vigo .
    Yes, your family are well-remembered, Reece. I still have an excellent memory at the age of 84, so if there is any gaps to fill in, and I can help, let me know.
    Cheers, David.

  122. Trevor brown Says:

    Hi David, Yes I and Eddy Edwards we born in Castle Rd, 1944 me Eddy 1945, but my brother Colin Brown who is 83 now points out that Craddocks was a bungalow type building, across the road from the one you mention, we lived at 2d Castle Road until 1950 when we moved to Shire Oak, my brother Colin still lives at Shire Oak Hill
    cheers Trevor (Hovis)

  123. Louis Lillywhite Says:

    Hi Trevor,

    It sounds as if David has replied. I was unaware of Craddock’s maternity home, but I think at the time it was common to be born in such an establishment rather than at home or in hospital. I must find out where my sister was born – I recall my Mother going away to somewhere and bringing her back whilst we lived at 117 Castle Road – Intersting – Louis

  124. Trevor brown Says:

    Hi Louis, Dr Lillywhite was my Dr for many years as a kid in the wood, how I remember the patients moving along the chairs until you got to the front, I can’t imagine how he and Dr Roberts got through the patients buy about 9.30am so that they could do the home visits,

  125. Louis Lillywhite Says:

    I remember it well as in 1964-66 I used to cover the absence of the receptionist – it was not just moving along the chairs as sometimes the queue stretched outside the surgery as well! As you say, time with the patient was very limited and it was not the best medicine. However, if you received a home visit you generally got a much more considered approach. The down side was quality of life – one afternoon off a week, work every Saturday morning, on duty one night in two (and usually called out sometime) and Saturday afternoon and Sunday off one week in two. Off course, and to put that into perspective, in those days the norm for ‘working people’ was a 48+ hours a week.

  126. BRIAN Says:

    Just been back to visit friends in the midlands,what a shock.The old st johns school has been demolished,but the caretakers house as was has been left standing due to it being privately owned,Then a new two storey block of flats has been built on to the old caretakers house,Looks very strange,The high street as gone.just a main road running through with the odd shop here and there,The carpark in Beechtree road still there and thats about it,Further up ,the ebeneezer chapel is still there,then nothing as the road goes on to shire oak,The top school is still standing dont know whats its used for today,Wernicks in lindon road has also gone not a lot of the village left,I went back to look for myself after reading the comments from other bloggers and everything they said is right ,cant see me going back again ,let progress take over.

  127. BRIAN Says:

    Is there anybody out there who went to the old school in the late 50s

    • Maureen wallis (nee orchard) Says:


    • Brian Says:

      Hi there Maureen,the goulds lived next door to us on the high street back in the 50s,our surname is jones.I remember the gould family COLIN,BARRY,WENDY i think there was two more but at my age names fail me.Colin has made a few comments on this site along with a few others,dig deep and you will find lots more.Brian.

      • Kenneth Cooper Says:

        I lived next door at 29 guess who? We went to school together and worked at the ash and wernicks. Old friend kenny cooper still alive and kicking living in brownhills.

  128. janetslee Says:

    Hi Brian
    I went to the school from 1956 and attended every year.
    I used to live next door to the School.
    I moved to North Wales when I was 16 but would love to go back to see the old place.
    Janet(was Craddock)

  129. BRIAN Says:

    Hi janet I.live in north Wales ,ive just been back to see friends,but as i said theres nothing left of what we used know,if you go back take a deep breathe.Brian

  130. Angela lockley Says:

    Hi, I came by this blog by accident it’s wonderful. I’m from “the Wood ” and remember lots of the places and people mentioned. My name is Angela Lockey nee Antill and I lived near the bottom of Beech tree road, opposite the orchard. I remember Ken Paskin also from Beech tree. Other names stuck in this old memory are, Colin and Eileen Evans, Ken and Carol Paget ( she was my best friend ) they emigrated to Australia. Also Llewelyns,Davies, Christine and Wendy Cooper, Brian and Irene Adkins, Stuart Godfrey and I am sure I will think of more. Wonderful summer days spent over the batters, playing around the clay hole of Aldridge brick and tile and the Vigo pool. Happy days !

    • t_forrester@sky.com Says:


      • Sheila Clark / Blakemore Says:

        Hi All ……My son has given me this site today. How wonderful to have so many memories bought back to me. I remember you Angela Antill, I lived over the canel bridge next to the travellers rest pub. I was going through all The names of the shops owners only the other day, my Uncle Tom Blakemore had the building in the high street on the left, my dad Jack Blakemore used to lorry drive for him.
        I was born in 1946 went to the old school (infants & Juniors ) then onto Ogley Hay Girls school.Lived on the Walsall road over the canel bridge until I was 11 then moved to Poxon road. All my brothers did a paper round for Beales paper shop, and I took over from my brother Barry.
        I will be checking in again so interesting to read people’s comments.
        Sheila ( Was Blakemore)

  131. Maureen wallis (nee orchard) Says:


  132. brian jones Says:

    Hi Maureen.I lived in one of the house;s next door to the post office.the Goulds where next door inbetween the hawthorn and our house.Colin Gould sometimes makes comments on this page,We moved up to poxon road in the late 50s,i think the Goulds moved to oak road The house was knocked down in the 60s.When we left,the pub was run by the Jackson family there daughter was called Diane.i can just about recall the name Griffiths but other than that i need a jolt.send a reply and i:ll see what i can do .Brian Jones

  133. brian jones Says:

    Hello Sheila.I remember Blakemores garage very well,we lived almost opposite on the high street we used watch the sunset over the arch just above the clock on a summers night Tills shop used to be next door,we moved to Poxon road in the 50s ,no 27 i too. had a paper round at beales on the high street the castlefort round then i was poached by Claytons opposite the school i was there untill i finished school many happy memories ,not forgotten.Brian Jones

  134. Brian Says:

    Well hello KENNY COOPER.What a surprise for you to pop up.How are you my old mate,where do we start. I often think about Les and Vera ,what a time we used to have,i can recall that much it will take for ever.ran my own business for a number of years ,then retired in 2006 to chill out,moved to North Wales where i still am,what have you been up to over the years i bet theres alot of tales to tell,Brian

  135. jacqueline barnsley Says:

    I lived in walsall wood from 1958,I went to St Johns school when Mr Feast was headmaster then on to Shire oak comp,does any one remember the railway when it flooded and us kids used corrugated metal sheets to make rafts, must have been daft, i remember being kicked all the way home by my father Lol Arblaster after he found us playing there.My grandparents gladys and jim arblaster lived on salters road
    I remember being sent to the “Brickies” by for snuff for an old lady on coronation road, we used to play hopscotch on the street corner and she would call us to run errands,and I remember the fair,with the flying swings and the circus that visited the common behind the working mens or labour club i think, it was on salters road. and the fields behind our house on stewart road where we would make dens in the old pigsty foundations and more than once set the grass on fire and .playing on the “RED ROCKS” clinker at the old atlas site,and Vigo pool where i recall some kids sadly drowned.The sandhills and foxcubby up off castlefort road where we would roam for hours.

    • Alison Rothery Says:


      You may remember my family, my brother was born in 51, his name is Paul Moseley, Mum’s maiden name was Ensor. I (Alison) was born in 64. I remember the name Arblaster, so I would assume it’s the same family. I remember a story about a brother and sister going on the ice and falling though and drowning. My brother may remember the name, I remember Mum mentioning their names, incredibly sad.

      We lived on Brownhills Road across from the school, next door to my Mum’s cousin Sam Warrington and his wife Ethel.

      I’ll let my brother know you’ve posted he will have better memory.

      • Trevor Anslow Says:

        My father Dennis Anslow was a good friend and drinking partner of Sam Warrington. I’m sure Ethel worked or helped out at Bates butcher shop on the corner of Litchfield Road , Streets corner. We moved from 111 Litchfield Road in 1954 and lived in Walsall. My father’s mother lived in the end house 107 and also worked at Bates.

      • Alison Rothery Says:

        I’ll let Nigel know, Sam’s son. Nigel’s sister Stella passed away a few years ago.


      • jacqueline barnsley Says:

        Hello Alison, I was born in 1956,went to St Johns walsall wood and then Shire oak , I remember the name Moseley and I think there was an Angela (Angie) and a Karen Moseley up at shire oak school.

  136. Dave (Eddy) Edwards Says:

    I was in the same class at school as Nigel Warrington

  137. maurice ivor birch Says:

    Hi! my name is Maurice Ivor Birch, i live in the Walsall Wood end of Aldridge, grew up in Grange Avenue, have been a Member of King Street Progressive club for 60 years, used Nellies Club in brookland road for many years, also Castle Club, at the age of ten i joined a troupe of singers based in Walsall Wood, called “THE STARLETS CONCERT PARTY”we sang in most clubs around the West Midlands, and i was the only boy singer,all the others were girls, named as follows– Evelyn Middlebrook, Marie Middlebrook, Florence Lote, Hazel Clark, Sheila Cllark, Pat Barret & Kathy Lee, we raised money for Doctor Barnardo’s Charity,
    for the past 49 years i have been adding sketches to a scroll of white paper which is 17 inches deep and 139 yards in length, the sketches are old and/or interesting buildings which used to be and some still are in and around the Village of Aldridge, the space taken up so far is 300 feet/100 yards and i am constantly adding to it am now struggling to find new pictures to add to it, so have decided to sketch some of the old buildings in and around Walsall Wood, i have already added The Brickmakrers Arms but need pictures of the old buildings which once stood at five ways junction-(ie) Aldridge Road And Copes Chip Shop, Knights Grocery Stores, old terraced houses in Vigo Road; Salters Road, and Brookland Road; Basfords Grocery Stores, the houses which once stood on Sunny side; The Palace Cinema the prefabs in Vigo Road; and James’s Garage in Brookland Road;some of my sketches were published in a book entitled “Aldridge On A Roll” in 2014, i am 77 years of age an have suffered 5 strokes which have restricted my sketching ability, but am determined to fill my scroll; can any body help me to find these pictures, also wanted are pictures of the old Co-operative Stores and the Butchers Shop, which stood on the Walsall Wood Road Aldridge-Mr Dilgers Clock Shop, next to The Anchor Inn on the Walsall Wood Road, Dumblederry Farm, Aldridge and Aldridge Mortuary which once stood in the old station yard Aldridge,
    Best Wishes Maurice

    • Roger evans Says:

      Hello I’m roger Evans. Born in Walsall wood 1955 next to the travelers rest public house. Trevor and Barry Yates lived next door to us. And I also new Hazel Clark too. We then moved to opposite side of canal in Prince st. Then had the paper shop opposite church in the wood. My parents where floss and billy Evans. And yes we used to go to king st pub when we were kids. And my granny and grandad lived opposite the club. Billy Evans too. Good old days I do have lots more to write

      • Paul owens Says:

        Roger, my name is Paul Owens and also lived in Prince Street, I remember Bill and Floss and worked as a paper boy for them .
        I was in the same class as linda Evans and remember her older brother stewart,also the previous owners of the paper shop who I think were related to you , Mr and mrs Downes whos’s twins were also in the same class at St johns school Jobin and Jenifer.

  138. anthony west Says:

    Hello, I live at number 28 beechtree road, About a year or so ago an elderly gentleman by the surname of cunningham visited my house and told me that he used to live there in the past
    He informed me that he was a police sargent with staffordshire police and that this was the county constables home/office. If it was staffordshire police it would have been prior to the metropolitain changes
    apparently there were two holding cells and an enquiry office here. I have tried to find out any information but other than finding two OS maps of 1895 with no house and 1897 28 being there i can find no plans or information.
    Does anyone have any knowledge to share on the property?

    • kenpaskin Says:

      Knew the Cunninghams well, used to live opposite them as a lad at No 17. And the Prestons before them. Yes, played in the cells and the garden, in exchange for them coming over and watching the trains from the top of ours. Happy memories, joined the force when old enough too. Hope the old sarge is fit and well.

  139. Dennis Wright Says:

    Hi, my name is Dennis Wright, I lived in Hall Lane in Walsall Wood from 1962 until 2015. The photographs and variety of information on this site is a pleasure to scroll through and so many of the places I can relate to. People that are mentioned in these I knew and shops and businesses I can well remember. Originally from Walsall my wife and I had Daughter Denise and Son Andrew who were both schooled in Walsall Wood until their moving on to respective university’s. My connection to Walsall Wood came about because as a single youth I was working at Aldridge Bricks & Coal from 1955 and when i married in 1960 we decided that one of the new houses in Hall Lane being built would be ideal with the Brickyard being close for me and Walsall where my wife Dorothy worked was easily reached by bus. Two names I will recall mentioned in these memories here – The Male family that lived next to Claridges shop on the High Street, Jack Male was my foreman at the brickyard and a popular foreman at that! He was one of three who oversaw the running of the brickyard along with Sammy Smith and Jabe Bickley. Jack’s pride and joy was his old but beautiful Austin six car that he christened ‘Nellybelle’ and only came to work in it when the weather was fine! My next memory is recalled with the photo of the ‘blood tub’ cinema in Brooklands Rd, sitting watching films that were on their second or third time round on a row of seating that rocked back and forth under a tin roof that magnified the sound of rain if it fell during the performance. But this cinema, crude it may have been, had a doorman complete in a buttoned up red greatcoat and peaked hat to match! The name of this splendid character was Jim Hatton, I say Jim because I am not totally sure of his Christian name because he worked as a brick setter with us at Aldridge Brick and was openly known as ‘Donkey’. He would finish his working shift, have a wash in a communal butlers sink (no showers at the brickyard in 1955) change into his uniform and walk along the rail track and on to Brooklands Rd to help get the cinema ready for the next showing.What a dedicated lovely man,Donkey Hatton. Both my kids went to the infants school on Streets corner, the headmaster at the beginning of their term there was I believe Mr Wroath and on his retirement was replaced by John Cross. I knew John very well, he lived in Hall Lane five doors from me and his Daughters Joanne and Sarah were regular visitors as friends of my two kids. Sadly John passed away early last year. I watched the Beehive pub ( a foundry in 1962) change into flats, the pub sign on the side disappeared I know not where and subsequently taken over by an engineering firm. My working life was completed with 29 years at the BRD, later GKN, as a setter operator. I now live in Shirley, Solihull but still have friends living in Walsall Wood and Aldridge and many fond memories of my time there. Dennis Wright

    • oakparkrunner Says:

      Thank you for your comments,kind regards Godfrey ( oakparkrunner)

    • Roger evans Says:

      I’m roger evans my mom and dad had billy Evans the paper the paper shop opposite the church. I was born next to the travelers pub over canal bridge. My brother was Stuart and my sister was Linda. I went at Johns school too. I was born 1955 next to travelers rest

      • Paul owens Says:

        Roger I lived in prince street and worked for your Mom and Dad at the news agents. I was in the same class as Linda at St. John’s school and remember Stewart. My name is Paul Owens born 1953 and lived at number 16.

    • Roger evans Says:

      You would have known my dad billy Evans he worked at the B R D. We’re from the wood my brother Stuart sister Linda me roger

  140. David Evans Says:

    Hello Dennis
    I have just read your interesting comments. Mr Hatton may have been the gentleman who lived with his brother in Sunnyside..perhaps a David Hatton?. His family had strong roots with the Primitive Methodist Church in Walsall Wood..see Brownhills bobs blog, build it and they will come” and linked articles.
    mind regards
    David Evans

  141. Milton Shelley Says:

    Hi Godfrey, David,
    Just found this site and very interesting and bringing back so many memories.
    I lived at 27 Beech Tree Rd (opposite the doctors surgery) in the 50’s
    and early 60’s great times in a brilliant village.
    I will now spend time going through all the previous messages to put a smile on my face.
    If you would like to post this to see if there is anyone out there who has (hopefully) good memories, happy to get in touch.
    Milton J Shelley:)

    • Ken Paskin Says:

      Hi, I’m Ken Paskin, lived at No.17 opposite the Police House, born in 1944 and lived there till 1960. Went to St Johns Church School before going to Lichfield Grammar. Remember the old colliery train used to run behind our houses and the common at bottom of road behind the transport cafe on High St, where the fair used to come twice a year, and we played football when the BRS lorries weren’t parked on there. Queued up in the old wood hut surgery shifting forward from seat to seat till you came to either of the doctors doors.
      Sister . Margaret (Sylvia) still lives up Shire Oak. Ken paskin

      • Milton Shelley Says:

        Hi Ken, Good to hear from you, born in 1950 and lived at 27 with grandparents Jack & Hannah Richardson, my uncle Gwynfa also lived there, the house was opposite the doctors house entrance. My cousins Colin & Eileen Evans lived next door to us and Colin and myself spent many hours on the railway tracks putting pennies on before the train came. Walked the railways to Vigo pool many a times and remember the common, the cinema house was also still opposite the graveyard. Grandad was the grave digger and also head choirmaster at St Johns Church, I was also lead singer in the choir (before my voice broke, he he). Went to St Johns Church School around 1956 also a paperboy for the Claytons shop.
        Left Walsall Wood around 1968.

      • kenpaskin Says:

        Remember the Richardson’s but sorry can’t put a face to you. In a way the 6yrs difference places you in my footsteps. I was boy soprano at St John’s, up to 13/14, but choirmaster lived up Lichfield Rd just before you got to Colin’s Parcels. Remember getting a couple of Bob extra for ringing the bell for weddings. Sgt Preston was the previous copper and was transferred to Stafford we used to visit them quite often. Went into the county force myself at 19 and was first on scene of first child found in the Chase murders. Now retired and living on edge of Peaks near Chesterfield. Nice to share memories. Ken

      • Milton Shelley Says:

        Hi Ken,
        Nice part of the world to retire. Knew the Collins Transport well as I knew the daughter Ann Collins from school. All the best, Milton.

    • Roger evans Says:

      I’m roger evans my mom and dad had billy Evans the paper the paper shop opposite the church. I was born next to the travelers pub over canal bridge. My brother was Stuart and my sister was Linda. I went at Johns school too. I was born 1955 next to travelers rest

  142. Brian Jones Says:

    Is that the Milton shelley who was in the church choir the same time as me,we used to do a solo of once in royal david city at the chritmas service every year ,i was in the choir untill i found girls.(ARE YOU THE ONE)Brian Jones.

    • Ken Paskin Says:

      B eing just ahead of you at St John’s I had obviously found them before you….. after choir practice back of the Co=op. Ken Paskin

  143. Brian Jones Says:

    Any stories of the cricket pavillion after dark?

    • Ken Paskin Says:

      Oh yes, but keep those to myself….. but used to enjoy the cricket on a warm summer sunday afternoon too. Unique with the canal bank boundary and the vicarage garden field…. many things happenned down there…. Ken P

  144. Brian Jones Says:

    We used to go down the cricket pitch on a sunday my self and my two elder brothers Tom and Trevor ,used to get icecream from Rohda’s cafe ,if she was open.When the rev Evans was there i used to go down the vicarage in the school holiday,his grand kids John and Adrian used come over from Tamworth and stay for the six weeks holiday.We played in the Pavillion in the paddock at the back of the church ,i can recall a girl named Christine who lived at the hairdressers next door to the red lion pub,we had a great time.

    • kenpaskin Says:

      Remember Stackhouse more than Evans. Used to do a bit of gardening clearance for him in school holidays. All changed round there now. Didn’t realize at that time I would end up a Rev. too.

      • Milton Shelley Says:

        Hi Ken, Do you remember my grandfather in the choir he was a senior member for many years, Mr John Richardson, he was a miner at WW colliery, also the grave digger at WW cemetery (I used to help him occasionally). We both lived in Beechtree Rd. Milton

  145. School – Jean From The Wood Says:

    […] https://oakparkrunner.wordpress.com/walsall-wood-colliery/ […]

  146. Midlands Songwriters (@SongwritersWM) Says:

    Does anyone remember the fish and chip shop – opposite the Travellers Rest? It was run by Nellie and Bill Cashmore.

  147. Marguerite Morris Says:

    Janet, I remember you well. My mum taught you at St John’s,Nancy |Holdcroft. Mum and Dad lived on Shire Oak until 1984. Moved to Cannock Chase. \Mum died in 1993,Dad only in 2019.

  148. Dave Wilkinson Says:

    really enjoyed reading people’s memories, here’s a few from me. I grew up in the wood. Mom and dad moved into coppice road after getting married before moving into lichfield road when dad bought Gordon’s Removals around 1970. He and mom then ran it for best part of 30 yrs. Dad was a regular at the Red lion and was part of the tug of war team, they all jumped into the cut after winning.
    I remember the silver jubilee party at the royal exchange, where Ray Hatton did novelty train rides and dad did pony rides.
    Had many happy days on Walsall wood common, playing football, making dens under the old bridges, climbing trees in coppy woods and having bike races on oak park car park.
    I remember getting spooked one night walking past the cemetery on way back from Vigo park after hearing stories that the Angel in the cemetery came alive at night. Scary when your nine.
    I went to Walsall wood cubs and scouts, can’t remember the names of the leaders now but had fun.
    Great times.

    • janetslee Says:

      Hi Dave
      Nice to read your comments. I think you lived next door to my sister in Coppice Road (June and Arthur)
      Your parents bought Gordon’s removals from my Dad. I went to the School next door and later Streets Corner.
      We moved to North Wales late 60s. So have been here for 55 years now. Had a happy childhood at Lichfield Road house. Good memories reading your comments. Maiden name Craddock.

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