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Kingstanding

oldMohawk

master brummie
I'm looking for the gardening variety of nursery not the little cherubs variety!!
My brother-in-law vaguely remembers a nursery with shrubs (not little cherubs) near the old Midlands Counties Dairy situated on the site of present day Heather Croft road, and the nursery probably sold heathers maybe suggesting the road name. The Google Earth 1945 view shows the building with a small field behind, the 2005 view shows the building being demolished, and the 2007 view shows the present block of flats.
 

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Vivienne14

Super Moderator
Staff member
Phil, that's fantastic I think that's the place. I remember it was near Atlantic Road where we lived, so I think there might have been an entry/entrance to it from Atlantic. I remember it as a great, big, open field (not like the garden centres today, more like a really large allotment with a shed). But it was a business and we bought lots of shrubs from there. And you're right, we probably did pick up one or two heathers too. I remember the field having a lot of low growing shrubs, all in long lines, which could well have been heather, but I would have been very young at the time so can't be sure. I also remember the field was quite raised up from the entrance. I expect this was probably once part of a farm but as most of the land had been built on by the 1950s, I've always found it odd that this sticks out in my mind. Whatever it was, I loved the place. Thanks for solving my nagging question. Viv.
 

Phil

Gone, but not forgotten.
I have been asked by cal1966 to see if I can dig up some photos of Kingstanding and Perry Common. Well Caroline this thread I have dug out holds quite a few if you delve into it, but sadly quite a few are still missing due to the hacking we suffered.

I have looked through the thread and I will try not to repeat any that have been submitted previously, as I explained in my PM I have no great knowledge of Kingstanding and its surroundings, so please forgive any errors. So lets make a start with these few that I have no doubt you will recognise. If you have a problem just run your mouse over the thumbnail and a title will be revealed
 

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lesr1

master brummie
Thanks for putting the photos back on Phil...getting a lot of enjoyment from them.The second photo in post 1108(College Rd) is well before I was born.Can any one tell me if the church spire is the one in Witton Cemetary.If not can someone enlighten me where it was taken from.
 

Phil

Gone, but not forgotten.
lesr1

I seem to remember this question of where the photo at post #1108 was taken from being asked before. I can't remember if it was here or somewhere else. Though I think the consensus of opinion was it was taken from the roof of the library at the junction of College Rd & Hawthorn Rd which must have been newly built or in the process of being built at the time.
 

jennyann

Gone but not forgotten. R.I.P.
Staff member
Great photos Phil. Seeing those shops by the Mayfair Cinema brought back memories. I think the buildings are still there with different
shops. I loved going to the Mayfair Cinema in its day. lsr1, I think the far distant church spire is Aston Parish and the one on the right is in Witton Cemetery. Not sure if the Witton Cemetery Chapel in the photo is one of the two that were demolished in 1980.
 

jennyann

Gone but not forgotten. R.I.P.
Staff member
Thanks very much for the photo Phil. The Mayfair wasn't a top of the line cinema in it's day.
It served the area which was really growing when it was built just like the Plaza at Stockland
Green. The Kingstanding area also had the Odeon so the residents had a choice of films on a weekly basis.
 

golightly

master brummie
Hello--does anyone remember (and have a photograph of) a cinema in Rookery road Handsworth--(might well be named after the road), because I lived near there in the late 1940's, and, with my sibblings, went regularly to the Saturday morning kids shows. All the usual stuff was shown--Laurel and Hardy, Batman serials, cartoons--and of course--cowboy films. We'd leave there in a great rush pretending to be on horseback and firing our guns--great memories of post war simple pleasures. Golightly.
 

jennyann

Gone but not forgotten. R.I.P.
Staff member
Hi golightly: There is a photo of the Rookery Road Picture House on this link. There is also a thread on this Forum about
what happened to the place after the theatre was closed down https://cinematreasures.org/theaters/40928
https://birminghamhistory.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?t=29255
I remember the place as The Plaza Dance Hall and also remember The Farcroft Hotel further along Rookery Road where
a lot of the men went drinking before appearing at the Plaza almost at the end of the evening.
 

golightly

master brummie
Thanks for responding Jennyann. Now that I know the buildings 'afterlife', I'm not surprised to hear it eventually became a place for religion: that seems to be the final use for many of our Cinemas in the large citys of our country. At least, this saved some from demolition. Many of the larger and more illustrius ones were beautifully designed and decorated, especially the 'Art Deco' ones. As for the 'Dancehall days' period, you made me smile, thats exactly how it was, right up till the days of disco, when men could hide their shyness, and inadequate abilities more easily. I've looked at--possibly the only surviving picture of the 'Rookery'--and it's not quite how I remember it, but I was about 7 or 8 at that time. Thanks again golightly.
 

Vivienne14

Super Moderator
Staff member
scotts wheelwrights no 549 kingstanding road dated late 40s...this would have been situated on the same side as the hare and hounds pubs going towards the circle..



scotts garage kingstanding road dated 1955


Found a 1930 advert for G. Scott & Sons, Wheelwrights, Shoeing and General Smiths. Might have said before, but I have an inkling that the Smithy (Scott's Garage) roots possibly go way, way back. The village of Kingstanding centred around the Hare & Hounds (also once known as the Greyhound, and could also have been called the Fox Tavern) with the Smithy being located very close by. So I don't think Scott's Smithy was where the Texaco Garage is now - think we speculated about this somewhere in this thread. The Texaco Garage seems a bit too far away towards Kingstanding Circle. I think it was closer to the H & H pub, which would make sense in terms of shoeing traveller's horses etc. Would love to find out exactly where the original Smithy was. Shall have to do some more digging around. Viv.

ImageUploadedByTapatalkHD1389360753.125188.jpg
 

Vivienne14

Super Moderator
Staff member
After a fair bit of trawling around I've now got a theory about the Smithy on Kingstanding Road/Holly Lane. Here are two maps; the first of 1884 showing The Greyhound (later changed name to Hare & Hounds) pub and the second is one Astoness posted (on the "Foden Marie ?" thread here https://birminghamhistory.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?t=39369)

ImageUploadedByTapatalkHD1389458985.170149.jpg ImageUploadedByTapatalkHD1389459006.069986.jpg

The 1884 map shows the village smithy next to the Pub and Beech Cottages next to the smithy. The later map shows a smithy located almost opposite Old Oscott Hill. Now I doubt there were two smithies in such close proximity (or would there be?). So I presume the original smithy next to the pub must have ceased and maybe a new blacksmith/wheelwright set up in old farm buildings near Old Oscott Hill when the Greyhound/Hare and Hounds pub was re-built (1930 ?). This new blacksmith/wheelwright was probably Mr Scott, whose business became a garage, then Texaco's petrol station. Or Mr Scott/his ancestors might have started the blacksmith business from the Greyhound/H&H location, then re-located down the road when the Pub was re-built. Bit of a flimsy theory, I know. If anyone can throw any further light on this, please do.

PS. To get your bearings on the 1884 map, the main road on which the Greyhound/later H&H stands is on Holly Lane/later Kingstanding Road. The road bearing off to the top left is Old Oscott Hill. The footpath coming into view (left) is from Old Oscott College and would have met Holly Lane/Kingstanding Road somewhere near Tresham Road is today. And I expect the walk up that footpath from Old Oscott College was a killer, must have been very steep! Viv.
 
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