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All Souls Church, Birchfield, Stafford.

Big Gee

master brummie
Hi Andy,

thanks for the update regarding people at All Souls. They all seem to have enjoyed long lives, which is good to know!

I had a quick drive around Witton earlier today. There was a large van outside All Souls, and it looked like the church hall was being painted and renovated - I wonder for what purpose? The church itself still looks in good nick, but had "No Fly Tipping" signs all round it, so I'd guess they have a problem with this. I assume the church is still redundant. Unfortunately I was unable to park, due to the sheer number of cars lining the roads, so couldn't stop to find out more. When I lived on The Broadway the only time we saw as many cars was when there was a home game at Villa Park. The vicarage at the top of Normandy Road is still much as it was, and does look cared for, which is good.

Sadly, the area is run down and scruffy, and has been for a long time. It used to be a 'respectable' working-class area when I lived there and it's sad to see how much it's changed. Still, nothing stays the same for ever, and time moves on.

G
 

willey

master brummie
Hi Big Gee and Andy. My sentiments entirely. It was a great parish full of very nice families. Great memories! Regards. willey
 

Astonian

gone but not forgotten
hi grah ;
after reading your thread on the old souls ; do you know whether or not the st teresa,s church and social club is still in operation on the wellintonrd rd perry barr or not ;as we used to go there regulary with friends many moons ago ;
hope to see you soon and tell maria to have the pot warm ; best wishes to you both alan ;; astonian ;;;
 

Big Gee

master brummie
Hi Alan,

It's All Souls, mate - I'm an Old Soul! St Teresa's is still there, but don't know about the social club, which used to have a very good reputation at one time. I had a Polish mate who attended St Teresa's, and I went to a Polish Evening at the club and had a great time. The only time I ever went.

See you soon, and all the best,

G
 

Di.Poppitt

master brummie
In 2007 Canterbury Road School elebrated its Centenary, my sister and myself went to the celebrations and we decided to walk from the school back along the Broadway and past our old house in Woodall Road. It was packed full of memories, the shops at the part of the road near Davy Road are still there, not as we remembered them but we could both name the shops we knew.

The area is very run down now, and there is a car outside every house, as someone said it looks like Witton when Villa were at home.
 

David Baugh

New Member
I lived in Woodall Road which was the next road along The Broadway to Wenlock Road. My memories of All Souls are the dances that were held in the Church Hall every Tuesday afternoon / evening. The first was for us youngsters, all early teenagers, the second dance was for the adults, and amongst them was my mom and many of my friends mothers. I also recall mom saying that All Souls was a 'High Church' and that incense was used, which she considered was unnecessary.
Hi my name is David Baugh attended All Souls church sang in the choir I knew the Gilbert family in your road mr Gilbert was my piano tuner John his son also Barbara Smith who I think married Paul James and also the lady who was a podiatrist hope this is of interest
 

Big Gee

master brummie
Hi David,

I think I remember you from All Souls. I too sang in the choir when Rev Walmsley was vicar and Mr Liney was organist. Mr Gilbert also tuned our piano and I remember John Gilbert. The chiropodist in Woodall Road was Nurse Harper, and her daughter Pat was in my class at Canterbury Road Juniors. Small world!

G
 

David Baugh

New Member
I lived at 61 The Broadway, right at the T-junction between The Broadway and Wenlock Road, and I remember All Souls very well from the early 1950's onwards. The first incumbent I recall was the Rev Charles Lee, who left I think in the lateb1950's to take up an appointment at Crowland Abbey, Lincolnshire. I sang in the choir at his induction. The next incumbent was the Rev George Bernard Walmseley, and following him the Rev Foster who was the last incumbent prior to All Souls being made redundant. I was married in All Souls on July 3rd 1971, by my brother the Rev Michael Bryant, with the Rev Foster officiating. I recall it as a dark, dismal church, and when I was a child it always seemed to smell of stewed tea! The church hall was also used for a period as an annexe by Canterbury Cross Primary School. The last time I visited was for a funeral in about 1976.

Hope this is of interest, Dr Di.

Big Gee
Hi, sorry to gatecrash a thread, Yvonne LeRoux was my mum, as the thread say's she was married to Peter Leicester, they seperated in 1978 having had two boys, both re-married, mum to Rob Pither whose first wife , Sheila , had sadly died, they lived first in Melrose Road then in Brownhills, mum was diagnosed with bowel cancer and passed away some eleven years ago, Rob then moved down to Devon where he is still enjoying the countryside! My dad, Peter, is still going strong and lives in Worcester with his second wife Sue. Mr Leroux (Claude) passed away at 96, his wife , Gertrude (or Peggy as most knew her) actually outlived my mum and went on to reach 100!
Eddie Leicester passed away around nine years ago.
I have many happy memories of the All Souls cricket tours to South Wales, they were great fun!
Regards, Andy
Hi i lived opposite you at 44 the Broadway (David Baugh your brother was a friend of mine in the 50s I remember your mom and dad very well I think he worked in Sweden sometimes sang in choir and i think Mike came on holiday with us very happy days
 

Big Gee

master brummie
I've got you now, David. You used to come over to our house from time to time. You're right, my Dad was in Sweden for a lot of the time between about 1947 and 1952. Do you remember the horrible little old man in the choir at All Souls who kept prodding the kids while we were singing and hissing, "Look at yer books! Look at yer books!" He did it once too often to me one Sunday, and I turned round and let him have a mouthful. Mr Liney must have heard it, but never said a word to me!

My brother Mike now lives in Sheffield.

G
 

Di.Poppitt

master brummie
Hi David, my sister Jennifer (Worrall) was probably your era. The Gilberts lived on the corner of Woodall Road, they left Brimingham during the war and I can recall watching them move back into their house.
The Smith's were related to the Harpers, there were three boys and Barbara.
The Juggins lived on the opposite corner, two boys, one was Grahame?
 

David Baugh

New Member
I've got you now, David. You used to come over to our house from time to time. You're right, my Dad was in Sweden for a lot of the time between about 1947 and 1952. Do you remember the horrible little old man in the choir at All Souls who kept prodding the kids while we were singing and hissing, "Look at yer books! Look at yer books!" He did it once too often to me one Sunday, and I turned round and let him have a mouthful. Mr Liney must have heard it, but never said a word to me!

My brother Mike now lives in Sheffield.

G
Hi Big Gee I do rember that man. mr Clarke we called. him nobby do you recall the Durrant brothers Harold and Fred a little older than me unfortunately Fred passed away I think we were paid 3 /9 pence a month in the choir the smallest member received an extra 3p.other people I recall were Betty & Pat Gahagan hope this is of interest. Please rember me to Mike .
 

Big Gee

master brummie
Hi Big Gee I do rember that man. mr Clarke we called. him nobby do you recall the Durrant brothers Harold and Fred a little older than me unfortunately Fred passed away I think we were paid 3 /9 pence a month in the choir the smallest member received an extra 3p.other people I recall were Betty & Pat Gahagan hope this is of interest. Please rember me to Mike .
Hi David,

Mr Clarke, that was him! We called him plenty of names, not just Nobby! I remember Harold and Fred Durrant very well. Fred's daughter Liz married my friend Keith Jennings who lived on Aston Lane. I remember the name Gahagan, but can't put any faces to it. There was also Miss Minshull who ran the Sunday School, and Colin Lucas who ran the short-lived Youth Club when Rev Walmesley was vicar. Do you remember Mr and Mrs Nash and their son Michael - they lived a few doors away from the Vicarage in Normandy Road? And Graham and Sheila Gomm? One still-vivid memory I have is when Rev Charles Lee moved to Crowland Abbey, and a contingent of All Souls Choir, including me, went by coach to his investiture (if that's the correct term!). My wife and I visited Crowland a few years ago, and it seemed so small compared with how I remembered it. Oddly enough I don't remember being paid for being in the choir, but I suppose I must have been.

I don't see Mike very often these days, but I'll let him know by e-mail that you and I have had some contact.

Graham
 

willey

master brummie
Big Gee - For your information, Graham and Sheila Gomm are still going strong - still not slowing down! Another name, that of Fred Durrant. I had the pleasure of playing cricket for All Souls under his captaincy. He was a great man! I remember his daughter Liz as a very small baby: she being fed by her mother, Margery that when I went to Fred's to help carry the club's cricket bag. No cars in those days! Incidently Michael Nash played one or two games for the cricket club. Memories!! Regards. willey
 

Big Gee

master brummie
Hi Willey,

I saw Graham Gomm not long ago at The Duke, Duke Street in Suttton. He looked much the same as I remember him looking, years ago. Very nice person - I also insured my cars with him when I was self-employed. I assume he's retired now.

Willey and Di,

Do you remember almost opposite All Souls on Wenlock Road were two small shops, effectively in the front rooms of terraced houses? One was a general store run by a very jolly lady who would talk you to death if you let her, and next door was a kind of hardware shop run by an elderly widow, Mrs Kench. She was a nice old soul, given that us kids must have driven her potty calling in all the time for torch-bulbs and batteries for our various toys. It's debatable if she actually made a living out of her shop, but she seemed to be open all hours (to coin a phrase).

G
 

willey

master brummie
Big Gee.
Graham Gomm is virtually retired now but still goes into the office about once a week. Your mention of the general store opposite the Church brought back a memory for me. On my way to cubs I would go into the shop and buy a penny Oxo cube which I would proceed to eat on my way from the shop to the scout hut. The thought of doing that makes me heave but back in those war years a growing lad was permanently hungry and with no sweets to buy, it was something to chew on. Ugh! Regards. willey
 

Di.Poppitt

master brummie
Yes Graham I remember the 2 shops in Wenlock Road, there was a wall in front of each one. It was a meeting place for youngsters and I recall sitting on the wall.
A family called Mehan lived next door to the hardware shop. I didn't ever go into the shop but I did go into the grocers quite often, sent by Mom for something she had forgotten to buy in Witton Road.
 

David Baugh

New Member
Hi Willey,

I saw Graham Gomm not long ago at The Duke, Duke Street in Suttton. He looked much the same as I remember him looking, years ago. Very nice person - I also insured my cars with him when I was self-employed. I assume he's retired now.

Willey and Di,

Do you remember almost opposite All Souls on Wenlock Road were two small shops, effectively in the front rooms of terraced houses? One was a general store run by a very jolly lady who would talk you to death if you let her, and next door was a kind of hardware shop run by an elderly widow, Mrs Kench. She was a nice old soul, given that us kids must have driven her potty calling in all the time for torch-bulbs and batteries for our various toys. It's debatable if she actually made a living out of her shop, but she seemed to be open all hours (to coin a phrase).

G
Hi yes I rember these two shops well Mrs Kench she sold pea shooters toy cannons etc she was a nice lady the grocers next door was run by a Mrs Scrivener she had a daughter called Audrey who played piano. I used to dog errands for her Mrs Scrivener passed on quite early masons pop was 5p old money custard cream biscuits were popular great little shop memories come flooding back great days .
 

Hornsey

New Member
I lived in Woodall Road which was the next road along The Broadway to Wenlock Road. My memories of All Souls are the dances that were held in the Church Hall every Tuesday afternoon / evening. The first was for us youngsters, all early teenagers, the second dance was for the adults, and amongst them was my mom and many of my friends mothers. I also recall mom saying that All Souls was a 'High Church' and that incense was used, which she considered was unnecessary.
My Gran lived in Wenlock Rd opposite the shop- we used to go to church in Great Barr and I remember poking my head in All Souls one Sunday morning, during a service -it was high church. I also remember it being a very small congregation compared with Great Barr which always seemed full. This would have been late 1970s. I was learning to play the organ and I remember the organist kindly showing the instrument to me. I remember the 'funeral parking bay' being added (still there, I saw when I took a recent trip down Wenlock Rd after a Villa game)
 
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