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  1. P

    Re: Peter walker archives

    Birmingham steam trams Birmingham's steam trams 1 — Origin of the steam tram For over twenty years, Birmingham played surprisingly little part in its development — a brief two-part story that follows this general introduction. The advantage of propelling a vehicle on smooth tracks of...
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    Birmingham's steam trams

    1 — Origin of the steam tram For over twenty years, Birmingham played surprisingly little part in its development — a brief two-part story that follows this general introduction. The advantage of propelling a vehicle on smooth tracks of timber, stone or iron was recognised centuries ago...
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    The Duke Of Cambridge, Great King Street

    Lyn has asked for a replacement picture of this pub. How could I refuse a lady? Sorry I must try again when I have time to get the picture to appear. Peter
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    The Story of Midland Red

    Most of the following text was written six years ago, and some appeared on the Forum. I later updated it and added illustrations, but the result never appeared here. Despite the rather constrained format I am posting this today, in the knowledge that the real experts know better than I, and will...
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    Fifty years ago today

    Friday 6 March 1959 was my last day working for the City Architect's department,at the then-called Civic Centre building, now Baskerville House. I had started straight from the School of Architecture in September 1955, and at first assisted on various Corporation-owned buildings, at first on...
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    Ancient and Modern

    Yesterday I travelled from Marylebone to Birmingham and back on a train run by Britain's latest railway company, Wrexham and Shropshire Railway. The main reason was that the Virgin main line through Rugby was closed for the weekend again, and I guessed the alternative Chiltern Railways service...
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    Delving Round Digbeth

    Delving round Digbeth, Part1 Last Tuesday, having seen a good weather forecast the day before, I got myself ‘advance’ tickets over the internet from London Marylebone to Birmingham Snow Hill (return cost £7.90 on a senior railcard). Armed with two ‘Discovery Trails’ the Museum & Gallery did...
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    Roads to Birmingham

    Here is new series of essays on the history of roads leading to Birmingham. A series on the development of roads within the city will follow later. Perhaps Keith can put them on the main site some time. Peter
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    Birmingham Corporation bus history

    It's now a few years since I posted some notes on BCT bus history, which are still on the main site, but in need of updating and illustrations. So I have been working on it and will be putting a new version in serial version here. Perhaps Keith can replace it for the old stuff on the main site...
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    New Street Station - Early History 1

    After the opening of Stockton and Darlington Railway demonstrated that steam railways were commercially and technically viable, the next important development in Britain was the Liverpool & Manchester Railway, which carried heavier traffic over a greater distance, opening in. From that date on...
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    Birmingham in 1879

    There are not all that many good Victorian street maps of Brum available to surfers but, while researching for an article on the growth of the city's road system, I opened the map on my copy of the Archive CD Books [sadly no longer in business] version of the 1879 Kelly's Directory. The original...
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    Discovering Birmingham

    As a child in the 1930s, one of my greatest pleasures was exploring Birmingham, and it still is, mainly because it's nearly 50 years since I moved to London, but I always enjoy my 'sentimental journeys', which are bound to include a bit of discovery. Last week when I was in Brum I walked from...
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    The Old Contemptibles, Edmund St and Livery St

    Today I went in this place for the first time since it was recently refurbished. I think they've done a wonderful job, as it had got rather seedy over the last few years - though it was handy for Snow Hill Station, and they were selling Banks's at about £1.25 a pint in the afternoons. I'm...
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    NEW - Electoral Rolls on line

    Have you seen Tony Abraham's notice of a new service from the Midlands Historical Data Website? It offers details from the Birmingham Electoral Roll for 1912, 1918 (Absent Voters), 1920, 1925, 1930 and 1935, with an index (of 2.5m records) from their web site. From the search results you can...
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    Found at last

    Forty five years ago I bought a useful little book entitled 'Transport in West Bromwich', written by Arnold Mason and published that year by the Omnibus Society, of which I was then a member. It was only 40 pages thick and the old quarto format (about 8 x 10 inches) and, after I catalogued all...
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    School visits to factories

    Although it's a long time ago (nearly sixty years now), I do remember the optional visits every other Wednesday to a factory or other big employer in Brum. I was very keen, because it was in place of rugby football or cricket, neither of which appealed to me very much. I well remember the ICI...
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    Reading between the lines - a new look at old maps of Aston

    Part 1 - Introduction Many of us are fascinated by old maps. The more you look at them they tell you about places and how they developed. They can tell you more than any written words or even pictures can, but it's not always the whole truth, and sometimes it's not the truth at all. Early...
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    Lucas History

    The other day I was looking at a section on Lucas's on the Bham Industrial History site. This has some good material. I was impressed by the story about their full-time pilot, who had to give the managing director flying lessons, all in the company's time. The comment "Not only was his eye not...
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    I must be pig-headed

    About 18 months ago I started to set up what I hoped would be a comprehensive database of Birmingham pubs. I have done the same for smaller areas like Croydon, where I live, but there were about eight times as many places in the Birmingham area, so it was quite a challenge. It started off quite...
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    A new map of Birmingham, early 1830s

    Has anyone written already about the new copy of the first edition of the 1" Ordnance Survey maps, just published by Cassini Publishing Ltd, which seems to be an arm of the OS office at Southampton, since it is printed by them at Southampton. Although the original maps were only 1 inch to the...