Cheslyn Hay & DLHS Weekly News – 26th March 2017

If anyone would like to become a member, memberships are now due for 2017/18. £5 – the same as last year. All cheques to be made out to CH&DLHS and posted to Rob Allan, 9 Coltsfoot View, Cheslyn Hay, Walsall, West Mids WS6 7BG – or via Paypal (see our website or at our Salem Base.
EVENTS We welcome Richard Field as this month’s speaker on his favourite subject ‘Sir John Betjeman’. This Thursday, 30th March, at the Salem starting at 7.30pm. Admission £1 including refreshments. Everybody welcome.
Our team, led by Peter and Caroline Cadman, had another World War II Day last Monday. This time at the Featherstone Academy and they drew quite an appreciative reaction, not only from the staff but from all of the pupils themselves. A rewarding day.
OUR SALEM BASE is open from 9am – 2pm every Tuesday. Everyone welcome to view our archives and our collection of over 8,500 photographs with advice at hand.
REQUESTS The success of our website ( continues unabated and we continually receive requests from people discovering our site through entering a family name for research. Here a few recent enquiries, all of which are being dealt with this week.
From Constance ‘I’m the granddaughter of Connie Matthews. I would love any information relating to her sad death in 1953 at the Great Wyrley Church House mentioned in your newsletter of 20th January 2013. I’m intrigued as I was named after her but never had the pleasure of knowing her.’ Has anyone any memories of Connie to help Constance in her quest?
Peter Stallard has just come across our newsletter dated 19 October 2014 and would like to see a copy of Mr David Blount’s Class Photograph from the early sixties to revive memories of his old schooldays.
From John Burns who is looking for any information, maps, photographs or reference which might illustrate and/or discuss the extent of open cast mining works that took place, in the past, at or about the Quinton Estate Great Wyrley.
Geoffrey Norman Farnell, son of Horace Norman Farnell and grandson of William Farnell, who was born on the Bonk, has contacted us as he wants to know more about his Farnell family. Geoffrey says he, unfortunately, never had the chance to spend any time with his grandfather William, who was in the South Staffs and gassed on the Somme. His Army number was 6970 and Geoffrey has his medals.
And John from Reigate asks if any of his Russell ancestors subscribed to the building of the church in Great Wyrley ‘for the needs of the local population of 1,547 containing the very poorest and most ignorant in Wyrley and Cheslyn Hay’ adding that this would be unlikely though as they were probably among the poorest and most ignorant!
We are also delighted to comply with a request from the Shareshill Village website wanting four articles which we published in September 2008 to be forwarded to them so that they can include on their own website.
RESPONSES Another example from our website activity is a comment about the life of Cornelius Whitehouse from Celia Godwin dated 4th August 2009, Ray Griffiths replies ‘ I also lived in Bridgtown from the age of 4 in 1936 until the early 1960s and attended Park Street Methodist Church and the youth club. I first learned three of the most well known of the Cornelius Whitehouse carols at Bridgtown Boys School in the early 1940s. Two of the carols were very popular in Bridgtown at that time. My dad had a copy of eight of his carols which I used to play on the piano. I left the Cannock area in 1973 but I still have that music and still play some of the carols at Christmas time.’
ARCHIVE ADDITIONS/ARTEFACTS/DONATIONS A Garforth’s Miners Lamp, made by Eccles, and used by the Deputies. Donated by Paul Ridgway.
30th March 1967 Details of the flood problems for the residents of Low Street, Cheslyn Hay with quotes from Mrs D Dawson of Plot 4 and her neighbour, Mrs S Birch.
30th March 1967 Glancing Backwards from the “Advertiser” 28th March 1942
A story involving two sick old-age pensioners, Mr S Steadman and Mr A Wilkins. Involved are Mr Parkin, Mrs Ballance, Mrs Whitehouse, Mrs Withington, Mrs Mansell,Mr R Pee and Mrs Mellor.
30th March 1967 A special meeting to purchase the Old Falls clay pit at Cheslyn Hay.
31st March 1917 The Sunday School Anniversary in connection with the Primitive Methodist Church was held on Sunday, with names and full details.
31st March 1917 For several years a football carnival has been held on Good Friday, for the Wolverhampton Hospital or the Red Cross Society on the Barn Flat Ground. It has been decided this year to arrange a football match between a team from the Old Coppice Colliery and the Great Wyrley Colliery and a Military team (19th Leicester’s), the proceeds being in aid of the Local Relief Fund and Red Cross Society.
WWI COMMEMORATION This April we commemorate the death of 17100 Thomas Russell of the 2nd Battalion of the South Staffordshire Regiment, who was killed on 28th April 1917 aged 39, son of Henry and Mary Ann Russell, of 26 Queen Street, Cheslyn Hay, and buried with honour at the Arras Memorial.
ROGER WOLLASTON Roger has sadly passed away last Tuesday, aged 76. Born and bred on the village, Roger, worked as an electrician, but he had a lifetime’s involvement with the Salem Church in many aspects and was well respected by everyone. Funeral will be on Tuesday, 4th April at the Salem at 10.30am.

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