History on the village of Wall Heath in the county of Staffordshire. Research is augmented with photographs, details of licensees, stories of local folklore, census data, newspaper articles and a genealogy connections section for those studying their family history.



 

Wall Heath
Wall Heath

Background Information
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Related Newspaper Articles
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List of Pubs
Albion Inn
Board
Drillman's Arms
Horse and Jockey
Old Bush
Old Seven Stars Inn
Wall Heath Inn

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Genealogy Connections
If you have a genealogy story or query regarding the Cradley Heath area you can contact me and I will post it here in addition to including your message within the website pages for Staffordshire Genealogy.

 

Newspaper Articles
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Links to other Websites
Wall Heath Website

1950 Advertisement for Mitchell's & Butler's

 

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Quotation
“Or merry swains, who quaff the nut-brown ale, And sing enamour'd of the nut-brown maid.”
James Beattie

Trade Directories
1834 White's History, Gazetteer and Directory
"Kingswinford, or Swinford Regis, is a small but pleasant village, with many neat houses, 3 miles W.S.W. of Dudley, and 7 miles S. of Wolverhampton. It gives name to a very extensive parish which comprises 7,315 acres of hand, and 15,156 inhabitants, though in 1801, they only amounted to 6,164 souls. The greater portion of this immensely increased population is at Brierley Hill, Wordsley, Brettell Lane, Brockmoor, Bromley, Delph, Shutt End, and Wall Heath besides which, there are in the parish about 20 smaller hamlets. In these village and hamlets, are many extensive coal, iron and glass works, a wire mill, nine potteries of stone and coarse black ware, several large brick and tile yards, and a number of chain and nail manufacturers. The parish is divided into the "First and Second Divisions," which support their poor and repair the church and chapels of ease, conjointly. The poor rates amounted in 1830 to £5,713; in 1831, to £5397; and in 1832, to £6006, out of which upwards of £500 per annum was paid to the county rates; and in the latter year, £263 was disbursed for the relief of cholera patients. Since the 1828, the church rates have amounted to about £800 a year, of which about one-fourth was levied on the coal mines, and nearly two-thirds disbursed in the erection of the new church at Wordsley. The trustees of the late Earl Dudley are lords of the manor[which comprises the whole parish] and owners of most of the soil; bat J. H. H. Foley, Esq., Messrs. Homer, Dudley, and Briscoe, John Bradley and Co., John and Benjamin Gibbons, Diana Briscoe, W. S. Wheeley, John and Edward Addenbrooke, and several smaller proprietors, have estates here. The 'wake' or feast is held on the first Sunday after September 19th. King's Swinford derived the regal part of its name from its being an ancient demesne of the crown, and the latter part from Sweyn, the first Danish King of England, who conquered the Anglo-Saxons, in the year 1010. It was held by the crown from the reign of William the Conqueror, till that of King John, who gave it to Baron Dudley, in whose descendants it has ever since continued. By a charter granted by Elizabeth, in 1567, and confirmed by Charles I, in 1630, the inhabitants of the the parishes of Kingswinford and Clent enjoy several valuable privileges. In pursuance of this charter, the inhabitants of Kingswinford and Clent parishes are allowed their exemption from toll in all the neighbouring markets; but when at a distance, they sometimes pay, rather than waste the time and money that would be required in proving their immunities before a magistrate. They are not, however, so fortunate as it respects "highway money and bridge money," as the highway and county rates are levied, the former wholly, and the latter partly, by themselves; nor does their charter imply that they should be exempt from making and repairing their own roads and bridges, but that they should be exempt from contributing towards those of other districts, either in the shape of toll or otherwise. In the village of Kingswinford, encompassed by lofty walls, stand Bradley Hall, an ancient half timbered house, with gable ends, transom windows, and other grotesque features of 1596, which date appears on its front. To the west is the pleasant eminence called Summer Hill, where there are several good modern houses; and at a short distance is Ashwood, an excellent house erected by Lord Dudley, and formerly occupied by Sir Joseph Scott. Upon Ashwood Heath [now enclosed,] appear the remains of a Roman camp of considerable extent, but surrounded only by a single ditch, which skews it to have been only a temporary post. The tumuli on Barrow hill, which now seem to be entirely formed of solid rock, are supposed, by Plott, to have been brought into that condition by the action of subterranean heat, Eastward from the village is Holbeach, the place where Stephen Lyttleton, and others concerned in the Gunpowder Plot, were taken in 1605. About half a mile to the south is Shutt end, a venerable structure, the seat of the Bendys for many generations and beyond it is Corbyn's Hall, which its took its name from its former owners. On the banks of the river Stour, and the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal, about two miles S.S.W. of Kingswinford, is Prestwood House, formerly the seat of the Hon. Edw. Foley, and now of Jno. H. Hodgetts Foley, Esq. M.P. It is a a handsome Gothic mansion, placed on the site of one more ancient, built by SIr John Lyttleton, of which the gateway still remains, forming a very picturesque appendage to the present residence. The surrounding pleasure grounds exhibit a most delightful variety of hill and dale, wood and water, effected chiefly by the hand of nature. Kingswinford Church, dedicated to Saint Mary, is an ancient fabric, surmounted by a massive tower, and containing several monumental inscriptions of the families of Corbyn, Scott, Hodgett, and Bendy. It has lately been thoroughly repaired, the windows decorated with stained glass, and the exterior covered with plaster, so that it has now a neat and clean appearance. It is, however, much too small for the greatly increased population of the parish; but its place is now partly supplied by a spacious and handsome new church, erected a few years ago at Wordsley, a modern village one mile to the south; besides which there is in the parish another chapel of ease at Brierley Hill. The rectory is valued in the King's books at £17.13s.4d. The trustees of Earl Dudley are the patrons, and the Rev. W. H. Cartwright the incumbent. There are in the parish nine dissenting places of worship, viz. three Wesleyan chapels, at Bromley, Brierley Hill, and Mount Pleasant; three Primitive Methodist chapels, at Quarry Bank, Brierley Hill, and Shutt End; and three Independent chapels, at Wordsley, Hart's Hill, and Brockmoor, the latter of which was built in 1827. About 1,200 children attend the various Sunday schools attached to the churches and chapels; and about 80 boys, and as many girls, are educated at the National school, which was built in 1821, by Viscount Dudley and Ward, as a church Sunday school, but established as a day school in 1829, under the patronage of the late Earl Dudley. The school house at Brierley .Hill, was left in 1701, by the Rev. Francis Ashinhurst; but the parishioners have for many years suffered a family of the name of Ward to occupy it rent free, and without teaching a school there, so that they now claim it as their own property. The old almshouses near Ashwood, have belonged to the parish from an early period, and are supposed to have been derived from the Hodgett family. 'They consist of six cottages, which have long been in a ruinous condition, being suffered to go to decay, and to be occupied by Any person who could get possession of them. The poor parishioners have several benefactions, amounting to the following yearly sums £16 from two allotments on Ashwood Hay, given at the enclosure in 1776, in lieu of land left by Eliz. Dancer and John Hodgetts; 40s. from the church-wardens, as the interest of £40 left by Edward Molyneux; and £2.10s. out of the poor rates, as the interest of £50 left by Ann Dudley, in 1784, and paid to the overseers in 1809. Several other charities to this parish are lost."

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