• Welcome to this forum . We are a worldwide group with a common interest in Birmingham and its history. While here, please follow a few simple rules. We ask that you respect other members, thank those who have helped you and please keep your contributions on-topic with the thread.

    We do hope you enjoy your visit. BHF Admin Team

The Summer Hill Stores, 401 Monument Road, Ladywood

Bobowler

knowlegable brummie
’Ow do muckers – wondering if any of you good folk out there have any gen on an old boozer in Ladywood that one of me family ran? It was at 401 Monument Road and was run by Alfred Henry Causier. Here’s the entry from the 1901 census with Alfred as a “Publican”, along his family living there:

image.jpeg
Whilst below is the Poor Relief Assessment the same year, where it’s named as ‘The Summer Hill Stores’, belonging to Rushton’s Brewery, and is down as a “Licensed Beerhouse”:


Seems it was near to the junction with King Edward’s Road, and was a few doors away from a Wesleyan Methodist Chapel, as noted in the 1905 Kelly’s Directory of Birmingham:

image.jpeg

This is where I think the boozer was, marked out in red on the old Ordnance Survey map of the late 1880s:

image.jpeg

It’d be bostin’ if someone had an old snap of this ‘The Summer Hill Stores’, or knew anything about its history - so here’s hoping?
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Phil

Gone, but not forgotten.
Hi Bob

I don't think that 401 Monument Road was ever more than just a beer retailer and it closed between 1915 and 1921 as at that time it is being listed as a wardrobe dealer. I cannot find it listed as a full public house in the preceding years only a beer retailer.

The Summer Hill Stores has always been on the corner of Powell Street and Summer Hill Terrace. the building remains today but it has been closed for some time now.
 

Attachments

Astonian

gone but not forgotten
Hi Bobowler
Looking at your request for information on the methodist church on monument road
I am looking at the map and also reading a listing of shop keepers whom was around in those days
And I can tell you the church was still standing right up until the Ladywood clearance and espeacialy
To the end
I was not around in 1905 but I was around in the fifty and I lived in the king Edwards road
And it was about 200 yards from our front door around to the front entrance of that church
Which had a huge front and side entrance to enter the church and the grounds
Which reached far back to our rear garden in kingedwards road and also there upon
At the bottom of our garden there was a huge high wall you could see some parts of the church
Within our rear garden
If you walked to the corner from the church entrance on monument road which would have been about 75 yards
To the kingedwards road on that very corner was a stationary shop and news agents which
Was never altered from day one the last person to have that shop business was a Mr Dickinson and wife
Both elderly they was there between the war years as you turned into kingedwards road
There was a long high brick wall which was for storages for the shops including the chemist
And if you like car garages then you had a entry with little back tiny houses possible
Belonging to the church you had to walk up a couple of steps to walk up this very narrow entry
There was a little house at the opening which was a Mr Albert Hawks And versa her name
And there was an old family called the liqudich excuse that spelling on that
But just past that entry was our house 243 king Edwards road and next to us was 245 the hollonds
Family whom was a well known chimney sweep for Ladywood right next to his front door was a
A gate way with steppes you would have walked up to the rear side of the church
And either enter through that way to get to the front door entrance it also had another high wall
Along the front on kingedwards road we used to go in that church on a Wednesday evening
To watch silent movies for the cost of 3d old money most of all the local kids came from around the area
What I also noticed on the kellys directory a couple of names was as follows
Clews cycles shop he was there in the year you are looking for along with his family
They .lived in a huge house on the corner of Portland road edgbaston and they was involved
Theaters and acting themselves
Coming from the church front was the chemist then the stationary ,
406 the green grocery later became the woods green grocery on monument road and
Open end another one around in the corner of Springfield street and kingedwards road as well
Which was only yards from the church wall in kingedwards road
The summer hill premises was there in the early fiftys but laid empty for years
I could not under. Stand why it was called summer stores knowing summer hill was down by spring hill
And further going towards summer hill sandpitts l will have to close now as my battery is running out
I will come back to over the weekend if you like best wishes Astonian,,,,,Alan,,,
 

mikejee

Super Moderator
Staff member
Your map is correct. The marked building is no 401. The building seems to have survived till demolished in the early 1960s, but the beerhouse disappeared between 1914 and 1921. At this time a lot of pubs were shut, as the licensees thought excessive drinking caused production problems in the factories.It later became a secondhand clothes shop and for many years a radio engineer's shop.
It looks like there was a pub there from around 1870, though at that time the numbering was different as this part of the road was known as Icknield St West, and the pub was no 330. The 1872 directory lists a Mrs Harriett Groom as running it then. Alfred Causier is listed as landlord in directories from 1897 to 1905, but has gone by 1908 edition (Note date is publication date and probably refers to year before that)
 

mikejee

Super Moderator
Staff member
Phil
There were two Summer Hill Stores, the one on summer hill and the one in monument road. On one occasion they both changed licensees at the same session. It always seems to have been a beerhouse. I should also have added that in the Birmingham Mail of 11.2.1915, it was reported that the clerk to the justices stated he was going to object to the renewal of the licence of the Monument Road stores as the number in the area were excessive and were not required to serve the needs of the public. I assume his objection was approved
 

Phil

Gone, but not forgotten.
Mike

That's what I get for assuming again, I had only ever heard or known of one Summer Hill Stores as it is an unusual name and it was in the locality I "assumed" it was the same place.
 

mikejee

Super Moderator
Staff member
That's very reasonable Phil. I cannot think of any good reason to call anything by that name in Monument Road. Presumably there was a reason though originally
 

mikejee

Super Moderator
Staff member
I suppose, when there were not so many houses and street in the area it was a more obvious name
 

Astonian

gone but not forgotten
I suggest you check the electrol roll for the fifths period regarding the shops and business
You will see Mr clews cycles he was a very old man and his business was there on the corner
Of monument road the old sign for monument road siding of the railway was in a side exit to the rail way siding in cope street which was for the monument road railway station that's been there for donkeys years
So where did you get the kellys directory details it tells you monument road as it as always been
And I can tell you that those little tiny houses in a court yard behind those shops
Which would have been built in that era they was tiny like a brew house little door ways little tiny windows it was like dolls houses and yes believe me or not the building that said summer hill stores did exist there
Becauce in the early 1950s the building and a sign did say summer hill at I thought
Why am I in Ladywood and down the road states summer hill stores
And yes I know the summer hill stores it was our local like I have said for many years as a local kid growing up within the area ,and I thought how strange it was then as a kid but it soon opens end up as another business
May I suggest you look into the clews cycles shop
On carlchinns book or the old Ladywood there are pictures of these shops that you are speaking g about and also the opening of a little open up steps alleyway that would have been behind those premises I can tell you
I lived door to them best wishes Astonian,,,,
 

Astonian

gone but not forgotten
Hi just a little note to say I am checking on the summer hill stores subject which brings me back to the Mr clews cycles shop where he lived and worked for decades of generations
You have a number 401 monument road for the store ,Mr clews is 405 ,when we moved to kingedwards road
243 kingedwards road which was virtually on the corner of monument road it was a cross roads
Which entailed monument road coming down from edgbaston ivvy bush Hagley road edgbaston
Then at some point in history as Carl chinns book tells me the name Ladywood was introduced
For reasons it was named monument road but I believe before that it was known as monument lane
Coming down further you would come to a rail way station which was named monument lane
That had to be changed but they kept that name plate I think for the railway siding of the sheds and maintenance
Of the trains and in order to get to these sheds you had to go down into cope street a little walk
When you came in front of a well known car repairs centre and shop and you turned if you was going
To the railway yards that's where they had the old sign on the entrance for donkeys years right through the sixties
It was the old sign monument lane but monument road was always known
Coming past the station pub on the corner of cope street that would be facing Shakespeare road
Continue coming down you would be passing the old welfare centre it was a couple of old little house put together
As it would have been built along side as these premises and shops as we spoke about
Advance a couple of hundred yards towards kingedwards road you came to these batch of old Victorian shops
They was very old in style and in fashion tiny shops now I cannot recall at the moments the first couple of shops
On approach king towards kingedwards road , but I can tell you likelhave try to describe
On coming from the oppersite side of kingedwards road from Mr clews cycle shop heading to what we say about the summer hill stores as and when it was operational or not is
Firstly clews 405 the stationary large shop then the chemist then directly after the chemist
Was a fish and chip shop ran by a very elderly lady and just pass her was this old property of a shop which was totally closed down for decades and there was an old brown sign placed on the doors as the summer hill stores
And another reason I can recollect it was because I went down to spring hill by the library we crossed over
The roads and there was an old midland bank and across the the road on the bulpitts wall was the road sign
Summer hill and I thought to myself that's strange we are in Ladywood somebody made a mistake
Went to spring hill to old billy Langdon builder and bath room specialist for some think the old man had to do to our new house why was it said summer hill stores that would have been a off licence or so think as you say
Bearing in mind its was decades that premises was operationional
But what puts me to this is because you may know or not know that that ,is kingedwards road is split into two halfs
And is still is today and there was no clews manufacturing of bikes as far as I can say
And there was no courts down there it was all houses the only courts down that side of kingedwards road
Was in the side roads of st marks street and the continuing of side road and it on
But if you come out of the summer hill stores pub you was no near Mr clews nor that church
But I merely pointed out what was taken from the kellys direction the numbers of monument road and dear old Mr clews as a nipper he treated alright always had time for the kids is trade mark was he a.ways wore a bobby had
That meaning a pomm pom hat with a pommy on it
Then the stationary shop
But when I think back to what I have said as bout the church and around the side of it
We lived at the back since of the church and also I said that there is pictures of these shops
And also directory the other side of the church wall was two very small old accident factory's very small indeed
Ajoing the church wall and our back gardens was including these little of shacks of the building
With one stories high was closely facing each other in fact you could see into each others work shop
Also I would like to Add that the old little house was directly behind these property's fronts of monument roads
They would have been the originally little dolls house where people live in there was about four or five remaking
Up that little arch way you can see on the pages I have seen there is area of kingedwards road
Carl chinns and old Ladywood site of kingedwards road our old house is later
With Mr hollonds family and our house on the page its states 243/245 king Edwards road
And you can see the old wall of the side of the church we would clamber up and over to get into the movies they done for 3d for us local kids you will get a glimpse of the opening but also
You will see one with a morris minor parked by the lamp post of what was the stationary premises storage and garages of the said chip shop owners garage sh had there the minor was my late brother in law car
Alf summers whom formerly worked with his brother at hardy and spicers Eddington
Those little tiny house was from that era that was a court because when you walked up that little opening
It was a very narrow opening and dark at the end of reaching it emediately there was a little house
One room down and one upstairs window with with the old gas mantle still on working
And the plaque was still above the opening I cannot recall the number today but emediatly
To your left turn a couple of paces was tree more little dolls hoses with tiny door and believe me they was small
I know because I played with the kids up there lousis Kelly for one and the others was the liquidish family
Of kids and as I an
M tapping away here I know and recall its flashing back to me I put this on here about ten to twelve years
Ago on that subject the summer hill store I recall as it was my local just like all the pubs in Ladywood
And as I also recall in the sixtys the gather from there and I knew his son move to that pub in the town
The old crown by the station at the bottom of hill street by the Albany hotel
Best wishes Astonian,,,, Alan,,,'''
 

Phil

Gone, but not forgotten.
It's not a very good photo, but I believe this is the junction of King Edwards Road and Monument Rd in the late 50's. You can just see the Wesleyan Chapel a little further up from the junction on the right hand side, that being so number 401 would be the 4th shop up from the corner.
 

Attachments

Astonian

gone but not forgotten
Hi Phil
Yes indeed it is the junction of kingedwards road and monument red
And yes your calculations are correct with the shop,as I have prevuiosly said in order
Dickinsons stationary the chemist then there was Mrs price old lady lived and ran the chippie on her own
Then the shop front of what was the stores of summer hill
I have that particular picture myself and on that subject there is two same pictures taken of that shot
You have got that ones was taken by and printed in the Birmingham mail
But years later a there is another one taken but with out the kids on it
Showing the very corner of the shop and along side shot pointing down the road
Which had more eye detail those wooden garages had been demolished it showed the lamp post
And with my late brother in laws morris minor standing alone and you can see the little entry of the walk way to
Those little tiny dolls houses of Victorian they was never remoderenised
Only the front of kingedwards road of the entry to go up
That little windows you would have seen was the Hawks family and the next door was our house
243 kingedwards road Ladywood I used to sleep in the very top window you seen it was the Attic
Also including was the kirbys family there first twenty ton wagon they bought parked out side there yard
Which was included in the second photo I will end ever to try and find them to produce
And whilst I am mentioning the corner shot of the photo you have put on
On the corner the gang of kids you see having there picture taken by the photographer
Was in fact just three of my younger brothers tony, Pete and Phil, whom incicently as joined our forum
And by strong thing he happen end to phone me last night , he was aware of the photo of that era as I gave him a photo years ago with them and he gave my other two a copy Phil is now sixty five years old
But still working and also the other to little lads was there friends from across the road
They was the stokes twinns and the young fella on the bike was my old friend
Whom lived down by stokes in kingedwards road his brother Raymond on is bike
And on that day in question I happenen to look out the front door and looked up to the corner
To see if the kids was okay,I seen then all out side the paper shop so I went up to check out whom was the big kid with the bike and they started to shout a man across the road had taken there picture
From across the road the other side of the pelican crossing and then I found out it was Raymond gardener
On the push bike the car was Mr and Mrs dickisons fromm the stationary
Our house that's in view before we moved from Aston was apparently an old pawn shop
Ran by a lady and she had only moved out by twelve months before we moved there
And she was around or should I say the old pawn shop would have been there for decades
I am told by an old friend whom lived in the street whom I only found out
And contacted him and went to his home recently owing to a guy whom on this forum is a member
And he his my long time friend from childhood days after I asked on this site of a ybodys knowledge
Ronnie used to be a grave digger in Hands worth until they brought in the JCB and made them unemployable
Once again Phil many thanks and thanks for the good hard work you are doing for us all
On this great forum best wishes Astonian,,,, Alan,,,,,,,
 

Bobowler

knowlegable brummie
Well me ol’ muckers what can I say? Some bostin’ replies here, full of crackin’ stuff.

Ta for the pic of the ‘other’ Summer Hill Stores, or ‘The Stores’, over on Summer Hill Terrace Phil. Ar I had heard of this, and, like Astonian, was puzzled as to why the one in Ladywood had the same name, given the other one was on Summer Hill.

It would be good to learn the difference between a ‘beerhouse’ and a full ‘public house’ too, if some kind soul could tell us that is? Would it have been more of an outdoor then, rather than a sit-in boozer?

Mind special thanks for the other snap Phil, of what seems to be 401 Monument Road in the 1950s, that’s just the ticket! Amazing that the lads on the corner are actually Alan’s brothers!!

Bostin’ reading the memories you have of your old end Alan - all about the Methodist Church and the shops, as well as the bit about going to the flicks in the Church for thruppence! What you’ve writ really makes this part of old Ladywood come alive, so thanks for replying.

As I’ve said, like you, I thought it odd Alfred Causier’s ‘The Summer Hill Stores’ was called that, what with it being a way away from Summer Hill itself, and there being another one there an’ all! I wondered if an old gaffer of the one on Summer Hill moved to Monument Road and took the name with him?

Much obliged to you for your postings Mike, stuffed with detail. Glad to know I did get the right spot on the map, and interesting to hear the building was still there until the sixties (as you’ll see Alan says he remembers it being empty in the fifties). You’ve obviously gone to some trouble for me, for which I’m grateful, and I now know much more about its history than I did the day before yesterday.

Fascinating to learn about the change of road name from Icknield Street West, and the renumbering and everything that went with that. Whilst the snippet about it losing its licence in 1915 is of particular interest, and fits with what you and Phil found out about it no longer being a beerhouse between 1914/15 and 1921.

I know Alfred was in Brummagem by the 1891 census, as he’s living at 1 Back 40 Ruston Street North in Ladywood. He must have come in the early 1880s as he was married in Aston in 1884 and his daughter, Kate, was also born in Brum in 1889. Anyroad, here the 1891 census, where he’d down as an “Iron Planer”:


Summut I hadn’t got was Alfred at ‘The Summer Hill Stores’ in 1897, so ta for this Mike, also good to know he’d moved on by 1908. His daughter Kate had died in 1903, and by 1911 he’d gone ‘up North’, and was living at Ravensthorpe, Dewsbury, in the West Riding of Yorkshire according to the census that year:


Although when first up in Yorkshire he’s down as an ‘Engineer’, by 1922 he was running the Plough Inn at Northorpe, Mirfield, not far from Ravensthorpe, where he stayed until 1926. That year he moved to the Black Bull Inn at Birstall, again not far away, before taking on the Blacksmith’s Arms in Brownhill, Batley, at the beginning of 1932. This last boozer was then taken over by his son-in-law, Ingram Preece, the husband of his other daughter Agnes, after Alfred died in 1934.

As an aside here the Enumerator in 1911 had him down as “Fred Causier” on his schedule, whereas I’d have thought he’d have been ‘Alf’, but maybe that’s a Yorkshire thing? Not sure why Alfred took to being a pub landlord, but he did have family in Worcester who ran the Prince of Wales on Shrub Hill.

Anyroad up, many thanks for all the bits and bobs you’ve all put up, adds more to my knowledge about ‘The Summer Hill Stores’ and Alfred Henry Causier’s time there. If anyone could tell me more about what a ‘beerhouse’ was, I’d be chuffed. Cheers to one and all!
 
Last edited:

Vivienne14

Super Moderator
Staff member
Blimey Bobowler, the Black Bull in Birstall was my grandad's local!! The family (my mums) all lived around Birstall - and still do. It's a certainty Alfred would have served my grandad as he spent a lot of time in there slaking his thirst after a day down't pit. The pub's still there too. Sorry totally off thread, but what a small world we live in. Viv.
 

Bobowler

knowlegable brummie
Well blow me Viv! That’s a hell of a coincidence!!

Ar I know the boozer is still there, mind I en’t been there yet! I think the Plough at Northorpe/Mirfield might be extant an’ all, though I dun’no about the Blacksmith’s Arms at Brownhill?

In case you’re interested here’s a ‘notice of sale’ from The Yorkshire Post of 10 March 1928 about the Black Bull, giving a nice description of the premises:


Wonder if it’s changed much since the above, dun’t look like it from the pics I’ve seen of the outside.

I actually quite fancy a trip up to ‘God’s own county’ to have a mooch around inside, and maybe I’ll take in a nice drop of ale whilst I’m there!
 
Last edited:

Phil

Gone, but not forgotten.
Bob

I think the difference between a beer retailer and a public house was the beer retailer could only sell beer ale porter and cider whereas the public house could sell wines and spirits as well.
 

mikejee

Super Moderator
Staff member
The origin of the beerhouse was a desire to cut the consumption of spirits, particularly gin in the early 1800s. The government introduced a beerhouse licence which was , relatively cheap and could be acquired by virtually anyone with the money to buy it, but could only sell the less-alcoholic drinks. The original ones were often in the front rooms of peoples small houses. After a while they found it necessary to tighten the regulations up a bit, but they continued to exist till the middle of the 20th century, though steadily decreasing in number as they were bought up by the breweries who often converted them to normal public houses (reckoning they could make more profit by also selling wine & spirits).
 

Vivienne14

Super Moderator
Staff member
Thanks for the Black Bull info Bob. Been a very long time since I went in there so don't know what it's like now. There's a nice link between Birstall and Birmingham in Joseph Priestley (he of the Priestley Riots in Birmingham and member of the Lunar Society). He was born in Birstall - there's a statue of him in the market square. Apologies, again off topic, well almost. Viv.
 

Attachments

Bobowler

knowlegable brummie
’Ow do everyone, and many thanks for yet more bostin’ contributions.

Glad to hear you liked the 1928 sales notice about the Black Bull Viv, and likewise it was interesting to learn about Joseph Priestley coming from Birstall. So Brummagem got him, and over a hundred and forty years later they had Alfred Causier in return!!

Must say here how much I appreciate your clearing up what a beerhouse was for me Phil and Mike, and I see from summat else on the internet, about the Beerhouse Act of 1830, that it defines one as being “where beer is sold to be consumed on the premises” (my underlining).

So this means that ‘The Summer Hill Stores’ was definitely a boozer, and not just an outdoor. But, like you’ve pointed out, it would have only sold beer, ale and such like, as its licence den’t cover it to sell wines or spirits like an inn or tavern - s’pose in a way this made a beerhouse the poor man’s boozer then?

Anyroad, after you told me about the 1897 entry in Kelly’s Directory Mike, I thought I’d have a go at putting all the different entries together, so here they are for 1895, 1897, 1899, 1900, 1905 and 1908:



As you implied, it looks like Alfred Causier took on the boozer around 1896, from a Henry Alexander, and then left about 1905ish, after which it was taken over by an Edward H. Williams.

When I looked at the 1897 Kelly’s Directory of Birmingham, with its Suburbs I thought I’d tot up how many ‘Beer Retailers’ there were and came up with a figure of 1,680, with the entries under this heading taking up the best part of seven pages in the Directory!

I take it that many of these would have been beerhouses, to which you can add another 920 ‘Public Houses’, the details for which cover almost another six pages of the Directory, and include ‘Hotels, Inns & Taverns’.

Flippin’ heck - Brummagem must have been awash with booze back in Victorian times! All interesting stuff mind. I’m learning a lot already and I’ve only been here since Saturday!!
 
Last edited:
Top