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Take a step back in time to see what the places and buildings of our Black Country were like in years long gone by.

Dudley Guest Hospital.

The Guest Hospital, situated in Tipton Road was originally erected in 1849 by the first Earl of Dudley as an asylum to accommodate workmen blinded in his limestone workings. However, the miners rejected the Earl's charity so he granted the disused asylum, together with the grounds upon which it stood, to the trustees of a bequest amounting to £20000 by the late Joseph Guest of Dudley, for the endowment of a hospital.

At his own expense, Lord Dudley rearranged and altered the building from designs by the late architect, William Bourne. In 1892, a fever block was opened. The hospital received over £70000 under the Will of the late Hugh Lewis who died in 1908. He lived in Sutton Coldfield but was formerly of Tipton. A new eye infirmary and surgical out-door department were built on land adjoining the hospital in 1915-16 at a cost of approximately £10000.

The Guest Hospital, Dudley.

Old Town Hall, Dudley.

This postcard was printed and published by E. Blocksidge of Dudley. It is one of very few pictures of the Old Town Hall that stood in the Market Place and was removed in 1860.

The Fountain, Market Place, Dudley.

This postcard is from the early 1900's because tramlines are visible in the foreground. The drinking fountain was designed by James Forsyth and was erected at the expense of the first Earl of Dudley and publicly presented to the town on 17 October 1867. It was erected on the land where the old Town Hall had stood.

Castle Street, Dudley.

This provides a good view of the Old Hen & Chickens Inn and St Edmund's Church in the background.

Market Place, Dudley.

A view similar to the above but without the market stalls! See information on the postcard below.

Posted January 27th 1905, to Mrs D.G. Smith, Avondale Villas, Joinings Bank, Langley Green.

Market Place, Dudley.

This postcard is dated somewhere between 1899 and the early 1900's. It is unusual to see a picture of Dudley town centre without the market stalls! The temporary stalls were regularly cleared away because the local authority did not want them to become a permanent, unofficial fixture. The market place dates back to medieval times and remains an integral part of Dudley town centre's character today.

Another lovely image of the market place.

A later image of the busy market place.

High Street, Dudley, c1905.

An excellent view looking towards 'Top Church' (St Thomas). The tramlines are evident  and the shops Liptons and Freeman Hardy & Willis are visible in the foreground on the right.

High Street, Dudley.

An interesting colour postcard dated October 8th 1916.

High Street, Dudley.

The Post Office and Wolverhampton Street, Dudley.

Another interesting view of Wolverhampton Street, with John Hollins shop in the foreground. 

Police Station, Dudley.

The Police Station was erected by the County and transferred to the Corporation. The Police Station adjoined the Town Hall in Priory Street.

The Town Hall, Dudley.

The original Town Hall stood in Market Place, replaced by the drinking fountain in 1867. The first Earl of Dudley erected a second Town Hall in Priory Street which was a spacious building in the Gothic style. This was purchased and reconstructed by the Corporation. However, a new Town Hall, shown above, was erected in St James's Road and there was a grand opening in 1928.

Saracen's Head Hotel, Stone Street, Dudley.

The statue of the first Earl of Dudley and the Church of St Edmund.

Entrance to Castle Grounds, Dudley.

The statue of the first Earl of Dudley was erected in front of the entrance to Dudley Castle in 1888. This postcard is dated circa 1914. The large electric lamp indicates that the street lighting had changed from gas to electricity.

The Hippodrome, Dudley.

Another view of the Hippodrome.

The Empire, Dudley.

The Keep, Dudley Castle.

The Courtyard, Dudley Castle.

Lady Artists, Dudley Castle.

Posted August 16th 1905, to Miss Chambers, Campbell Street, Brockmoor, Brierley Hill.

Dudley Priory about 1790.

This is from a painting by E. Blocksidge of Stone Street Dudley, copied from an old engraving.

The Schools, Hollyhall, near Dudley.

Mount Pleasant, Quarry Bank. The Chapel has remained intact and is used regularly.  

High Street, Brierley Hill.

High Street, Brierley Hill.

An excellent view of a very busy Brierley Hill High Street in which the tram lines are evident. Note the well dressed children in the foreground.

Church Hill, Brierley Hill.

This shows the top of Church Hill and Brierley Hill War Memorial.

Wollaston High Street.

The trams passed through Wollaston Village on their journey to Kinver.

Wollaston Vicarage, Wollaston.

A lovely old photographic image of Wollaston Vicarage. The building has survived the test of time and retains much of its original character.

Promenade Gardens, Stourbridge and High Street, Stourbridge.

High Street, Stourbridge.

High Street, Stourbridge.

The Scala Picture House is visible on the right.

The Town Clock, High Street, Stourbridge.

The same image that appears below but taken at least 70 years earlier. Note the clock is a minute off midday! This was in the days when Stourbridge was a bustling town and an attraction for many visitors.

The Mitre Inn, Stourbridge.

A present day view of the Mitre Inn can be found on our sister site www.blackcountryimages.co.uk

Hagley Road, Stourbridge.

This shows a lovely view down Hagley Road. Today, Stourbridge College is on the far left. The peace and tranquility no longer exists due to the dreadful traffic congestion.

The Military Hospital, Studley Court, Stourbridge.

Corbett Hospital, Stourbridge.

The original Corbett Hospital, formerly Hill House which was purchased by John Corbett in December 1891.The house was converted into a hospital and was donated by John Corbett to the local people. It was opened on 31st July 1893.

High Street, Lye.

A really interesting postcard, circa early 1900's.

St John's Church, Halesowen.

This photographic postcard was probably taken in the 1930's and provides a good view of the town surrounding the church.

St John's Church, Halesowen.

The Cross, Kingswinford.

Junction Canal, Wordsley.

This is the stretch of canal on which John Guest (Guests the builders of Amblecote) built a house in 1828 which exists today. He died in 1857 and his unmarried daughter Jane took over ownership of the property. Sadly she died after drowning in the canal. Ann, her sister inherited the house and it is still in the family today having passed to her descendants.

Source: Black Country Bugle article published 27 November 2008.

The Crooked House, Himley, Near Wolverhampton.

The Glynne Arms lies on the edge of the Himley Estate - it is perhaps better known as the Crooked House or The Siden House. It lies on what was previously the divide between Sir Stephen Glynne's land and that of the Earl of Dudley. Due to the coal mining in the area over a hundred years ago, the property has suffered from subsidence and is worthy of a visit to experience the effect of walking on the sloping floor!

The precise location of Himley is somewhat confusing. Himley parish became part of Seisdon Union following the Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834 and later existed within Seisdon Rural District until 1974 when it became part of the newly formed South Staffordshire District. However, Himley is situated within the Sedgley DY3 Postal District, which belongs to Dudley Council!

Extract From 'T.P.'s Weekly', June 17, 1904.

Crooked House, (Glynne Arms) Himley, Nr. Wolverhampton.

This is a wonderful image of the interior of the Crooked House, (Glynne Arms).

Old Windmill, Ruiton, Dudley.

Coseley Church and Wind Turbine.

The Beacon Monument, Sedgley.

This postcard was sent in 1908 by an N Brown who lived half a mile away from the Beacon Monument.

The tower dominates the landscape and stands on the highest point of Beacon Hill, some 777 feet above sea level which is considered to be the highest point of land between Sedgley and the Ural Mountains in Russia. The tower, some 50 feet high, now stands where the signal beacon once burnt and was erected in 1846. It is not known for definite who erected this wonderful monument. Some believe it was Lord Wrottesley, a well known Staffordshire amateur astronomer and others think it was a local a landowner by the name of Mr Petit. This is now a Grade II listed building.

Vicarage, Lower Gornal.

This postcard was printed in Germany and is a rare image of the Vicarage, Lower Gornal. The date on the reverse is 1904.

Cradley Heath Bank.

The United Counties Bank of Cradley Heath, which later became Barclays Bank before its closure. See here: http://www.blackcountryimages.com/35123.html

High Street, Cradley Heath, circa 1904.

A very interesting street scene. The women in the foreground on the right appear to be in a rush. Note also the clothes hanging outside one of the shops perhaps? Griffiths, the Jewellers, is visible on the right. This is the area of the High Street that collapsed as a result of subsidence in 1914. See below and also the 'Significant Events' page where there are more photographs and information.

Collapse Of High St. Cradley Heath. Subsidence 1914.

Please see 'Significant Events' page.

High Street, Cradley Heath.

A lovely old postcard showing a very busy High Street of days gone by. The date is circa the 1920's.

High Street, Cradley Heath.

Another lovely old postcard of Cradley Heath before the 'Supermarkets' ruined our High Streets. A wonderful 1930's street scene.

High Street, Cradley Heath.

One of my favourites because it shows Marsh and Baxter which I remember well. I loved the distinctive aroma of the sawdust on the floor in which I used to draw pictures with my shoes. The old market also appears on this postcard.

Old Hill Cricket Pavillion.

A very interesting postcard circa 1912.

Tudor House, Haden Hill Park, Old Hill 1891.

John Freakley, Slag Contractors, Dudley Port, Tipton.

Great Bridge,Tipton.

A very interesting postcard showing the Canal, Bloomfield, St Matthew's Church, St Martin's Church, Owen Street and the entrance to Victoria Park. Postcard is early 1900's.

This is the reverse of the multi-view Tipton postcard above. The last part reads as follows:

"Dear Fred, These are some of the people that are very kind friends of mine and also wish you the best on your 21st birthday."

What a lovely gesture.

Owen Street, Tipton.

The Fountain Inn, on the left of this postcard, was at 51, Owen Street and was owned by Showell's Brewery Co. Limited in 1921.

Owen Street, Tipton.

A loely postcard of Owen Street and the Albion Inn.

Victoria Road, Tipton.

Cape Hill, Smethwick.

Warley Abbey, Smethwick.

Please see this excellent link for information relating to these two Warley postcards:


The Lodge, Warley Woods.

The lodge house faced a small pool which was frequented by children of the area for paddling. The house guarded the entrance from Abbey Road to Warley Woods. In 1900, Warley was entirely rural and the area between Hurst Lane and Abbey Road was an area of fine farmland.

High Street, West Bromwich.

This view looking down the High Street from Dartmouth Square is dated around 1905. The obelisk style structure on the left is a drinking fountain and was erected in 1885 by Reuben Farley. He was the greatest benefactor of West Bromwich and had also served as Mayor of West Bromwich five times. The fountain was erected in memory of his mother Elizabeth. Reuben was born in 1826 and died in 1899 having been married three times due to the sad loss of his first two wives. He had three sons and two daughters with his third wife, the youngest of whom was only two when Reuben died. His funeral service was at Christ Church, a picture of which can be seen below.

High Street, West Bromwich.

High Street, West Bromwich.

High Street, West Bromwich.

This postcard is postmarked 1903 and is an interesting High Street scene.

Oak House, West Bromwich.

Dartmouth Park, West Bromwich.

Wednesbury Market.

Market Square, Wednesbury.

Park Street, Walsall.

An interesting postcard and although the tram is the focal point, one wonders what had caught the attention of the people in the picture!

Park Street And The Clock, Walsall.

The New Town Hall, Walsall.

Reverse of the above postcard, where the writer refers to the opening of the Town Hall in 1905.

Town Hall, Walsall.

This postcard is from the early 1900's.

Hillary Street, Pleck.

There is a pencil message on the reverse of this postcard, part of which says "dreadful about the war."

Lake and Bridge, West Park, Wolverhampton.

Victoria Street, Wolverhampton.

A very interesting street scene from 1918, which provides a nostalgic look back at how things used to be.

Lichfield Street, Showing Art Gallery, Wolverhampton.


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