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
I used this café as a regular in the 70's it did the best pork & stuffing sandwich to be had anywhere, It was at the junction of Oldknow Rd & Waverley Rd opposite the labour exchange just at the entrance of the Industrial estate.
[FONT=Verdana, Arial, Tahoma, Calibri, Geneva, sans-serif]Yes thanks Richie, it does have a look of Paradise Street, but I'm not too sure. The smaller building has something with 'Worc .....' written on the wall. Maybe something to do with the canal? Viv.[/FONT]
that was definately constitution hill and more or les facing keyon street as you come to the corner to turn on to costitution hill and turn left towards hockley hill they never demolished it they just altered the frontage of those couple of shops
which if i am right you can see the smller building which are still there just short of the oldlord clifton pub and the old swalloww rain coats
they was between the two pubs that was on the corners between them i wouldgo to the extent that they was at the start of old lucas,s building by keyon street the original ymca was at the bottom end by george claytons music centre and by george walkers saddle bike seats makers which was just around from claytons astonian,,,
[FONT=Verdana, Arial, Tahoma, Calibri, Geneva, sans-serif]Thanks Alan and Phil. It matches the Dale End photo, so I think they must have built the Snow Hill/Constitution Hill YMCA afterwards. Perhaps the move was to accommodate more men, or to provide more up to date facilities. Viv.[/FONT]
Dale End YMCA is not listed in 1900 Kelly's but is in the 1905 volume. I don't have access to those between those dates. I also found a reference to it being built 1900 to 1904 which fits. As I am not sure which way the numbering went I haven't (so far) identified the building next door with the sign on the wall.
Thanks Janice. Maybe the YMCA only came into being in 1900 ish. The building looks earlier than that given it's elaborate decoration. Looking at the later Snow Hill/Constitution Hill YMCA building it could be about late 1920s/30s. So the YMCA wouldn't have been at Dale End for a particularly long period of time. Perhaps the Dale End building wasn't fit for their purpose once they'd started up and they built a purpose built hostel at Snow Hill. Viv.
Janice & Vivienne the YMCA was built on the footprint of the then recently demolished St Peters Church c1900. The building indicated would have been the shop next door at that time. I don't have a copy of the 1900 edition of Kellys so I can't help there. I do know it was soon to be replaced by a wines and spirits importer E H James, which very well might have been the same owners as the sign certainly looks to read something along those lines.
Here is a photo that Mikejee posted some time back showing customers queuing to obtain the first supplies of Whisky after the last war.
The YMCA in Dale end is in the 1904 Kellys, but not the 1903 edition. The YMCA were certainly in Birmingham long before that. They are shown in the c1889 OS map in Needless Alley, having in 1875 bought the notorious Grand Sultan Divan building
The map of 1905 for Dale end seems to show that initially the YMCA took over the church building and used it, as it is described as the YMCA Hall, and seems to be the same building as the church in the c1889 map below. Presumably they later rebuilt.
The YMCA took over the premises of the Grand Sultan Divan in Needless Alley sometime in the late 1800's I think without checking my notes. The following isfrom an article in Showells Directory about it. My gt.grandfather's sister was working as a nursemaid to the Owner of the "Dancing Saloon" of ill repute in 1871. See the thread on Sultan Divan.
...when the notorious "Sultan Divan" was closed in Needless Alley, it was taken for the purposes of this institution, the most appropriate change of tenancy that could possibly be desired, the attractions of the glaring dancing-rooms and low-lived racket giving place to comfortable reading-rooms, a cosy library, and healthy amusements. Young men of all creeds may here find a welcome, and strangers to the town will meet friends to guide them in choice of companions, or in securing comfortable homes....
Thanks Mike and Judy. Well, what a contrast in the use of the Needless Alley building! How interesting. The YMCA thought it important to have a central position in the City, so the Needless Alley building must have really fit the bill. For men new to the City with no connections it would have been a refuge. I wonder how many young men were set on the 'right' road by the YMCA ethos of providing educational opportunities, no booze and clean pursuits.
Providing occupation/entertainment on the premises seems to have carried through to the Snow Hill premises too, as I believe there was a theatre contained within the building there. Viv.