WALKS AROUND HAGLEY: WALK No.8 WEST HAGLEY

DISTANCE: APPROXIMATELY TWO MILES TIME: ONE & A HALF HOURS. PARK IN VILLAGE CAR PARK (O.S.MAP GRID REF. 903802)

  1. From the car park turn right into Worcester Road. This road is a very old road, from Stourbridge to Worcester, which was turnpiked in 1753. The houses on the right were built to house rail commuters but have since been taken over as shops and offices, or even rebuilt. Worcester Road 1900 St Mary's Nursery
  2. Thresher's Wine Shop sold both sweets and wine until recently. It was the first shop in Hagley to make its own ice-cream after World War Two.
  3. Church Street is so named because of the Mission Church on the corner. Built in 1882 on land given by C.J. Bate and designed by Tom Grazebrook. It became a church hall when St. Saviour's was built and was sold in 1972 and demolished. The shops of Simon Emmott and G. Rossiter were built on the site.
  4. The properties between Church and Chapel Streets were originally cottages with small front gardens and walls. Note the shop with the cottage characteristics. Also note the section of wall by Spar which was part the garden wall of the cottage built on that site. It is worth looking above the shop fronts to estimate the age of the buildings
  5. To the left hand side of No 107 was located Central Garage run by Ben Cutler from about 1920 until 1962. Central Garage Worcester RoadThe swivelling petrol pump was a feature of the village. The garage not only repaired cars but provided a taxi service.
  6. Across the road No 96, a chemists shop, was already owned by Mr. Greenwood in 1928. It is remembered for its blazing open fire. Owned by the Co-op since 1993.
  7. King's was once Dr. Millar Smith's house later occupied by Dr. Gosling then Dr. Hansell. It then became a grocery store until bought out by Spar.
  8. Chapel Street, so named for the Primitive Methodist Chapel built in 1857, the building survives at No.10 behind the facade.
  9. Continue along Worcester Road to the lights. Turn right, round the corner, into Summervale Road. The name of fields nearby was Summergall but the Council substituted vale as ‘nicer! The Beauty Shop Re-Aqua was once the SWS then MEB showroom from 1948-1960
  10. Turn left into Milestone Drive. All of this land was once part of Spout Farm (a Spout means a spring), which was auctioned in lots in Dec.1924. A Nursery belonging to the Vaughan's was on the left and this is recalled by the name Nursery Close, built in the 1970s.
  11. Continue, passing Long Close and Spring Close, which recall two field names in the area, until you reach the ‘T' junction. Turn right, you have joined an old track which has existed for many centuries going across the Brake from Pedmore to the Spout.
  12. When the path leaves the metalled road Sweetpool Nature Reserve is on your left. The mill pool here was created in 1543 along with Brake Mill pool but the railway was built across the dam and part of the pool which dried up and became boggy.
  13. There are bricks in the path near to where, on the left, there was Spring cottage, a farm worker's cottage, sold at the auction of Spout Farm.
  14. Cross the railway, with due care.
  15. As you walk along Sweetpool Lane the land on your right was enclosed by the 16th. century and that on the left was enclosed for grazing in 1632 as far as the bank and stile.
  16. Pass The Crescent, built in the 30's on Spout Farm land. Then Hoarstone called after a boundary stone located at the junction of the Worcester and Kidderminster roads.
  17. Note the variety and ages of the buildings, dating from 1900 to the present day. The Brake, on the corner with Brake Lane, is 1960's housing replacing a house of that name dating from at least the 18th. century. This was owned by Edward Milward Oliver in 1838, a descendant of the wealthy Milward family, once owners of Wollescote Hall before their fortune was gambled away in 18th century.
  18. Ahead and to the left, across the field is The Birches, a house built in 1840 by Thomas Bate, a Stourbridge banker. Thomas Wilkes Webb (Glass Manufacturer) lived there in 1881.
  19. Turn left and walk to look at the cottages a little way up the lane. These were built shortly after 1732 by Lord Lyttleton for his farm workers, they were sold in 1938 and in 1976 a developer sold them to owner occupiers.
  20. Turn round and walk back along Brake Lane, Haybridge School, on the left, is built on the site of Brake Farm in existence by the 18th. Century. Thomas Tolley, owner in the 1840's sold some land to the Oxford, Worcester and Wolverhampton Railway Company (Old Worse & Worse) to build their track; in return they built the bridge north of Brake Lane to give access to his other fields. Hagley Railway Statrion
  21. The Station was not built until 1884 because of the dispute about who should pay for the land for the access to it. In the end Hagley residents paid for 570 sq. yards and G.W.R. for 166 sq. yards. A corrugated iron building preceded brick
  22. Station Road was formerly part of Brake Lane until the Station was built. The oldest buildings are the block of shops and cottages (No's 5 & 7) built in the 1850's to take advantage of trade from rail passengers. No 7 sold wool and sewing accessories from 1916 until 1995, amongst other things. No 5 was a grocers shop from 1912 until 1971.
  23. The house on the right hand corner was built by Thomas Tolley for his son Moses in the early 1850s. The area of the cross roads was known as Clap Gate until about 1870. It was where the road from Birmingham to Kidderminster met the road from Stourbridge to Worcester (until road improvements in the 19th, & 20th. centuries) St Saviour's Church
  24. Cross the road into Park Road. On the left is St. Saviour's Church opened in 1908 to serve the needs of the growing community in West Hagley (then called Lower Hagley). It replaced the Mission Church.
  25. Walk a little way up Park Road. On the right is Lodge Crescent, this was built in the 60's on the site of Park Farm (The Greens sold in 1958) Note the old gatepost by the pillar box.
  26. Look at the old buildings of the Primary School which was built in 1939 just in time to receive evacuees as well as local children.
  27. Return to Lodge Crescent, cross over the road and use the passage to Rooks Meadow. Continue to Middlefield Lane.
  28. Turn right, in a short distance is Middlefield Farm Built in the 1840's by Thomas Bate of the Birches on land previously part of Hollier's Farm, before this it was the middle field in the medieval common field system.
  29. Turn left, across, by Long Compton Drive was St. Mary's Nursery in the 1920's. On your left is St Saviour's Court occupying the site of houses built after the sale of Middlefield Farm.
  30. Cross the road at the traffic lights and continue along Worcester Road, in the field close to the site of West One a Neolithic stone axe, probably originating in Cornwall, was found in 1893.
  31. Return to the car park to complete the walk.
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