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Elliott Brown History & heritage
04 Jun 2021 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

A visit to Winterbourne House and Garden during May 2021

It's been a long time coming, but we went to Winterbourne House and Garden on Wednesday 26th May 2021. You enter via the house. Tickets can be bought inside the house, £7.20 for adults or £6.20 for seniors. You can also choose to have time to go around the house. We went in the house at 3pm. The Tearoom is also open, but you can have your tea and coffee on the terrace.

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A visit to Winterbourne House and Garden during May 2021





It's been a long time coming, but we went to Winterbourne House and Garden on Wednesday 26th May 2021. You enter via the house. Tickets can be bought inside the house, £7.20 for adults or £6.20 for seniors. You can also choose to have time to go around the house. We went in the house at 3pm. The Tearoom is also open, but you can have your tea and coffee on the terrace.


Winterbourne House and Garden

It's been a long time coming. But after almost 13 years, we went back to Winterbourne House and Garden. In 2008 only the garden was open to visitors. Since then, the Arts and Crafts style house was fully restored and given full museum status by 2017. Some things had changed with the garden as well. Plus this time I remembered to go down to the Edgbaston Pool. The ground floor and first floor of the house are open to visitors, but only a limited number of people at each time, on timed slots. The Tearoom was open as well. Only one household bubble can go up to the counter to order their drinks, card or app payment only. Have your drinks and cakes out on the terrace outside (tables and chairs). I think the indoor tearoom was open, but wasn't sure as everyone went to have their drinks outside.

 

Recap of the History of Winterbourne

The house was built in 1904 for John and Margaret Nettlefold. They were a wealthy Edwardian couple, who lived and raised their children here. Built in the Arts and Crafts style, John Nettlefold commissioned the architect Joseph Lancaster Ball to design the house. An unusual feature of Winterbourne is the wavy roof line, making the house look older than it actually is. The Nettlefold's were insistent that all the main rooms faced south, including the nursery, to get the maximum amount of sunlight and the best views. The house was built by Isaac Langley of Tyburn, Birmingham. The plaster work was undertaken by local craftsperson G P Bankart. It had all the mod cons of the time including electric lighting and gas fires in several rooms. Many people were moving to Edgbaston in the early 1900s, so it was the perfect place to built their family home. Winterbourne was also close to the new University of Birmingham which was founded by Margaret's uncle Joseph Chamberlain in 1900.

The Nettlefold's lived here from 1904 until 1919 (when John got ill). They were followed by the Wheelock family who lived here from 1919 until 1925. A gardener called John Nicholson bought the house in 1925. When he passed away in 1944, he bequeathed the house to the University of Birmingham.  The house at 58 Edgbaston Park Road has been a Grade II listed building since 1982. The house was fully restored in 2010. It gained full museum status in 2017, with the ground and first floor open to visitors to have a look around at.

 

 

This visit of May 2021, was by chance a couple of days after the 121st anniversary of the founding of the University of Birmingham by a Royal Charter.

 

View of Winterbourne House from the terrace. To the left is the entrance to the house, and also the area for having your teas and coffees outside.

 

 

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The house seen from the Lower Lawn, in the middle is the Pergola.

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The house seen from the Top Lawn. The terrace in front, parasols mostly closed as it was a dry day.

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The house seen from near the exit. The former garden entrance on the left. You now enter the house via  the door to the far right.

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A tour of the house inside

Starting your tour (without a guide) at The Drawing Room. It was a place for the family to relax and for entertaining guests. The plasterwork on the walls and ceilings are typical of Arts and Crafts design.

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We next to into The Hallway. It was inspired by 17th century long galleries.

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On the left is a portrait of John Nettlefold (1866 - 1930). The family lived in the house until 1919, when John got ill. It is a photograph of a portrait of John Nettlefold by John Byam Liston Shaw in 1904.

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At the far end of the Hallway is a portrait of Margaret Nettlefold (nee Chamberlain) (1871 - 1949). Born into the Chamberlain family, she was the niece of Joseph Chamberlain (1836 - 1914) and first cousin of Neville Chamberlain (1869 - 1940). The painting was also by John Byam Liston Shaw and done in 1904 (this is a photograph reproduction of the original).

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The next room on the ground floor was The Study. This room is dedicated to John Nettlefold and his work. On his desk lies the plans for the Moorpool estate. The wallpaper is 'Brier Rabbit' by William Morris.

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Up to the first foor and we are now in the Nurses' Room. It is the room on the left of the top of the stairs. It's the kind of room where the servants would have lived in the house.

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That is followed by The Nursery. It was a large and airy room for the children and faced the garden. The children would have played and slept in the room, and even had their lessons here from the Nurse before they were old enough to attend local schools.

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The next room is Nina's Room. It has been styled for a 16 year old girl from the period. The outfit near the window is an example of Edwardian summer dress worn by young girls of Nina's social standing.

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The final bedroom you can view is Ken's Room. Named after John Kenrick Nettlefold, he was the Nettlefold's only surviving son. It represents what the room could have looked like before he left the family home.

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In The Exhibition Room near the door was this sculpture. Standing Lovers, 1974. Made of Terracotta by John Tonks (1927-2012). It was originally exhibited at Winterbourne House in 1974, as part of a restrospective of John Tonks' work.

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The Winterbourne Press

This building was originally the garage, to house the Nettlefold's first motor car which they bought in 1906. Today the building houses the Winterbourne Press, which shows the early printing techniques of those used in Arts and Crafts design, with a collection of working 19th and early 20th century printing presses.

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When you go in, only one person is allowed at one time. Beyond this gate is staff only. There was several old printing presses inside, plus examples of prints that they had produced.

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Former farm buildings at Winterbourne

There is several former farm buildings and stables at Winterbourne. From the Walled Garden you can see The Old Hayloft houses, which is now the Winterbourne Shop. It is also now the exit from the garden. Various items can be bought here, such as the Guide Book for £5 (card or app payment only at present).

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Exiting the shop, you see the Coach House Gallery, which is now home to the Second-hand Bookshop.

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Garden tour at Winterbourne

First up is The Walled Garden. Through here is the shop, second-hand bookshop, the toilets, Winterbourne Press, and  Edwardian Kitchen. In the centre is the Dipping Pool. It was restored after a leak in 2008. To the far end is the Lean-to Glasshouse which was restored in 2005.

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The next area is the Glasshouse and Alpine Garden. Here you can visit The Gilbert Orchid House (pictured below). Also the Arid House and Alpine House. The Glasshouses were first included in this area as early as the 1930s. The Gilbert Orchid House was built in the 1960s.

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The Nut Walk is near the Geographic collections. It is an original feature of the garden, and provides a focal point for this area. It is in a tunnel shape. The hazelnut trees growing here are the same ones planted by Margaret Nettlefold over 100 years ago. By the 1980s the original structure had decayed, and was replaced with a new, longer lasting iron frame, domed in shape.

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The Rhododendron Walk runs straight towards the stream. There is also a gate on one side that leads to the Edgbaston Pool. It is the first part of the garden to burst into colour in the spring. There is the remains of an Oak Tree here, that has been left as a memorial to it.

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Taking a detour of the garden, down a path (from the unlocked gate) to the Edgbaston Pool. It belongs to Edgbaston Golf Club. Visitors to Winterbourne can walk along the path, and sit at the benches. The gate beyond is private property of the golf club. Visitors must leave the pool by 4:45pm, when the gate at Winterbourne is padlocked for the evening. The pool was part of the Edgbaston Estate of the Gough family, later members of the Calthorpe's, whose Calthorpe Estates owns much of the land in Edgbaston.

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Back in Winterbourne Garden, and now walking past the stream. This is the Japanese Bridge and Sandstone Rock Garden. On the day of our visit, the bridge was closed for maintenance, so couldn't do the Woodland Walk.

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The furthest part of the garden you can go to. The Stream Lawn, Streamside Borders and Magnolia Border. It's hard to believe that you are two miles away from the city centre. It was originally used in 1904 to grow vegetables. Later in the 1970s it was home to a small nursery, before it was removed to make way for the present day lawn and flowering shrub borders.

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Next up is the Lower Lawn. In this view you can see the Pergola (view towards the house). The Herb Circle is to the right. The Pergola is a true Arts and Crafts feature, added by John Nicolson. It was restored in 2005. Currently there is no access to it, while you are walking around the lawn.

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The Old Meadow is a part of the Winter Garden. It is alongside Winterbourne's western boundary. Originally pastureland during the Edwardian period, it was tamed by gardening staff in 1969, when it was used to house a series of plant family beds. Later it became a commemorative garden to celebrate the centenary of the City of Birmingham in 1989. The Old Meadow contains The White Border, The Mediterranean Bed and the Winter Border.

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The Top Lawn can be seen from the terrace in front of the house. The Lime Walk is to the right of here. This is the lawn where the Nettlefold's would have played boules and croquet. The Wheelocks, who followed them, used it for family games and tennis.

dndimg alt="Winterbourne" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/TL Winterbourne HG (May 2021).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown. Can be found on Twitter: ellrbrown

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Elliott Brown Education
02 Jun 2021 - Elliott Brown
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King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools - from Camp Hill in 1883 to Kings Heath in 1956-58

King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools is two Grammar schools on one site. The boys and the girls school. Founded in 1883, they were at a site at Camp Hill until they moved to Vicarage Road in Kings Heath (boys in 1956, girls in 1958). The old building survives at Camp Hill Circus near Bordesley Middleway and Stratford Road as The Bordesley Centre. The current school is next to Kings Heath Park.

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King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools - from Camp Hill in 1883 to Kings Heath in 1956-58





King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools is two Grammar schools on one site. The boys and the girls school. Founded in 1883, they were at a site at Camp Hill until they moved to Vicarage Road in Kings Heath (boys in 1956, girls in 1958). The old building survives at Camp Hill Circus near Bordesley Middleway and Stratford Road as The Bordesley Centre. The current school is next to Kings Heath Park.


King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools

In this third post on the King Edward VI schools founded in 1883, we look at King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Boys and King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Girls. Originally located at the top of the Stratford Road, near Sparkbrook and Bordesley. They relocated to a site at Vicarage Road and Cartland Road between 1956 and 1958. Unlike Five Ways, the old building at Camp Hill Circus still stands today, as The Bordesley Centre.

 

History of King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools

Today you can see the old building at the corner of Bordesley Middleway and the Stratford Road, if you are getting the bus around Camp Hill Circus (or travelling in other forms of transport). It was designed by Martin and Chamberlain, and first opened in 1883 for the King Edward VI Foundation. The building is now a Grade II* listed building. The builder was James Moffat. There was later additions to the building during the 20th century, with more alterations in the early 21st century.

The school of 1883 was the boys school, later the girls school was built by 1890. The school was built in the Gothic style. After the school moved to Kings Heath, the buildings was first used as a Teachers Training College, then by the City of Birmingham Polytechnic (later University of Central England, now Birmingham City University). It is now The Bordesley Centre, a religious, educational and advisory centre for Birmingham's Yemeni community, and run by the Muath Trust. The building was remodelled and refurbished in 2004-06.

Photos below taken during March 2012. First photo taken from Camp Hill near Camp Hill Circus. Bordesley Middleway on the left.

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Second photo taken from Bordesley Middleway near Camp Hill Circus. At the time went to see a plaque about The Ship Inn, the site of a pub that used to stand here. Was used by Prince Rupert, before his Royalist army attacked Birmingham at Easter 1643. The Ship Inn stood here from 1560 until 1972. It was rebuilt in the late 19th Century.

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King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools today in Kings Heath

The boys school relocated to a site in Kings Heath at Vicarage Road and Cartland Road during 1956. This is next to Kings Heath Park. While the house of the former estate here is now within Kings Heath Park, the gatehouse is in the grounds of the school near the Vicarage Road. Formerly owned by the Cartland family from 1880 until the 1900s (ancestors of the late Romance novel author Barbara Cartland). The girls school relocated to the site in 1958, and both the boys and girls schools share buildings. They also have playing fields at Kings Heath, which they would have had no room for at Camp Hill.

 

During October 2017 from the Vicarage Road in Kings Heath. Pupils can get off the 11C, 11A or 35 bus routes down here. Main entrance to the school is on the right. Just cross at the lights.

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This is the pedestrian entrance for pupils and visitors to the schools. Looked very autumnal that day.

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In April 2019, a walk past King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools. Starting at Vicarage Road in Kings Heath near this sign (gatehouse behind).

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Sign seen on Cartland Road. Reception for both schools on Vicarage Road.

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The sports field with rugby goalpost, modern buildings behind. Seen behind the fence on Cartland Road.

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Modern buildings shared by both the boys and girls school. I think they also share the sports field. Barbed wire on the fence at Cartland Road.

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A December 2019 view up the main drive to King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools. Looks like they built modern extensions to the 1950s buildings here. Lined by trees. At the time, the gate on Vicarage Road was open. There is ramps, so vehicles will have to drive slowly towards the schools.

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A more recent view of King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools, taken from Kings Heath Park during March 2021. The Cartland family formed the Priory Trust Co Ltd to manage the grounds. They wanted to develop houses, but ended up selling the land to the local council (Kings Norton and Northfield Urban District Council). The council opened the land as a park. Birmingham City Council took over the park and Kings Heath in 1911. The remaining land was sold to the council in 1914. The rest of the land of what is now King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools would have been purchased by the Foundation of the Schools of King Edward VI in Birmingham in the mid 1950s.

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The Lodge to King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools

This is the Lodge to King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools. One of the oldest buildings at the school, it dates to the early 19th Century, and is a Grade II listed building. It is rendered, and Battlemented according to the Historic England listing, at 142 Vicarage Road. The lodge was formerly part of the estate of Kings Heath House, and was separated when a fence was erected between the schools and Kings Heath Park (probably in the late 1950s).

First view (below) taken from the 11A bus on Vicarage Road in Kings Heath during April 2017.

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The next view was taken from Kings Heath Park during Febraury 2018. You can see the modern fence separating the park and school grounds here.

dndimg alt="King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/KEVICH Kings Heath (Feb 2018).JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

Another bus view, this time taken from the 11C during April 2018. You can see the lodge on the left, and the vehicle entrance driveway on the right to the schools.

dndimg alt="King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/KEVICH Kings Heath (Apr 2018).JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

 

School bus

In May 2017, I was on an 11A bus, when I passed this school bus for both King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Boys and King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Girls, seen on the Vicarage Road. Bus ID 112.

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On this side advertising the girls school and their outstanding results! Co-education for all.

dndimg alt="King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/KEVICH Kings Heath (May 2017) (2).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

 

My own history with King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Boys. I would have done the 11+ here during 1993-94, but I didn't pass it. I recall putting King Edward VI Five Ways School as my first choice, and King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Boys as my second. I ended up at my local Comprehensive school (which was in walking distance). Years later got the 11C on the way to my Sixth Form College (1999 - 2001). I now think I should have put Camp Hill as my number one. My late brother later got into Camp Hill. Of course I pass it now whenever I get the 11C or 11A past the school. Or go to Kings Heath Park.

 

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Photos taken by Elliott Brown. Can be found on Twitter: ellrbrown

 

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70 passion points
Elliott Brown Health & wellbeing
25 May 2021 - Elliott Brown
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Getting vaccinated at Millennium Point

My turn to be vaccinated came around in mid May 2021. I booked both at Millennium Point. And I had my first jab on the 19th May 2021. You go in from the ground floor, and get checked. Lift up to 2nd floor, and get directed to chairs to sit down at. After the jab, you go to another chair to sit and wait 15 minutes before leaving. I'll be back in August 2021.

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Getting vaccinated at Millennium Point





My turn to be vaccinated came around in mid May 2021. I booked both at Millennium Point. And I had my first jab on the 19th May 2021. You go in from the ground floor, and get checked. Lift up to 2nd floor, and get directed to chairs to sit down at. After the jab, you go to another chair to sit and wait 15 minutes before leaving. I'll be back in August 2021.


My experience of going to Millennium Point for my 1st vaccination. When my time came for my age range, the NHS posted me a letter with a link to go to. So I booked both vaccinations for Millennium Point. The first one a few days after the letter came, the second for August 2021.

The text from the GP surgery came a day later, by which time I'd already booked for Millennium Point had had to let them know I wasn't going to the local health centres.

 

My first appointment was on the morning of 19th May 2021. When you get in, you show your reference number and they ask you various questions. You are then directed to the right, then to the lift. Press 2 to go up to the 2nd floor.

Once up, they direct you to a seat to wait to be called. You then get called, same questions again, and the nurse talks to you while injecting the vaccine into your arm.

After this you are directed to another seat, to wait for about 15 minutes, resting after your jab. There maybe side effects within the 24 hours after having it, but should be fine after two days.

Plus you get a card, which you will need to take for the 2nd vaccine appointment. Put it in your wallet or purse.

 

April 2021

Photos below, taken during a walk into Eastside during mid April 2021. Passing Millennium Point. This would be the same route I took going to my vaccine a month later. HS2 works on the right.

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Millennium Point seen on the left from Eastside City Park. Thinktank is due to reopen at the end of May 2021.

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The Millennium Point Covid-19 Vaccination Centre sign from Eastside City Park. I would be back in May.

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That day got the train to and from the City Centre. But you can also get the bus, and walk to Millennium Point.

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May 2021

Leaving Millennium Point towards the Jennens Road exit. I noticed that Six/Eight Kafe was gone, and was now another cafe. This exit takes you past the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, towards Aston University.

dndimg alt="Millennium Point" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Millennium Point (May 2021).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Photos taken by Elliott Brown. Can be found on Twitter: ellrbrown

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60 passion points
Elliott Brown Education
22 May 2021 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

King Edward VI Five Ways School - from Five Ways in 1883 to Bartley Green in 1958

In the second of our posts on the Schools of King Edward VI in Birmingham (that was founded in 1883). This time we take a look at King Edward VI Five Ways School. Originally located at the junction of Ladywood Road and Hagley Road at Five Ways. They moved to a site on Scotland Lane in Bartley Green in 1958, near Bartley Reservoir. Was a boys only Grammar School until girls joined in 1988.

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King Edward VI Five Ways School - from Five Ways in 1883 to Bartley Green in 1958





In the second of our posts on the Schools of King Edward VI in Birmingham (that was founded in 1883). This time we take a look at King Edward VI Five Ways School. Originally located at the junction of Ladywood Road and Hagley Road at Five Ways. They moved to a site on Scotland Lane in Bartley Green in 1958, near Bartley Reservoir. Was a boys only Grammar School until girls joined in 1988.


King Edward VI Five Ways School

Today at Five Ways Island there is little evidence other than a plaque to tell you that a Grammar School used to be located at this busy traffic island. That school was King Edward VI Five Ways School, and it still exists today, although they have spent the last 63 years based in Bartley Green, on a site on Scotland Lane (next to Bartley Reservoir). The school is about 5 to 7 miles away from where they were originally located.

 

History of King Edward VI Five Ways School

The school was founded in 1883 as part of the Foundation of the Schools of King Edward VI in Birmingham. The school building was originally the former Edgbaston Proprietary School, at the junction of Ladywood Road and Hagley Road at Five Ways, Birmingham. The building was designed by J.A. Chatwin and opened in January 1883 by A. J. Mundella. At first the school had room for 350 boys. The first headmaster was E.H.F. MacCarthy, who remained in the post until his retirement in 1916. A building at the Bartley Green site was later named after him in his honour.

Public domain photo below dated to 1888 of the old King King Edward VI Five Ways School.

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During the Second World War, the school evacuated to Monmouth, and the boys attended Monmouth School. After the war, the school was getting a bit too overcrowded, due to the development of land around Five Ways, and there was no room to expand. So the decision was taken to relocate the school to Bartley Green. The land was formerly Bartley Farm next to Bartley Reservoir, and the Foundation purchased it. The school opened there at Scotland Lane in April 1958.

After the school moved away from Five Ways, eventually the old building was demolished, and Five Ways Island was developed during the 1960s. Ladywood Road was renamed to Ladywood Middleway. Meanwhile an underpass was built under the island from Broad Street to Hagley Road in Edgbaston. Islington Row became Islington Row Middleway, while Calthorpe Road and Harborne Road remained with the same road names.

In January 1983, on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the opening of the school, this plaque (photo below below taken in 2009) was unveiled by Councillor P. Hollingworth (when Lord Mayor of Birmingham). It records King Edward VI Grammar School Five Ways from 16-1-1883 to 2-4-1958. The plaque was unveiled on 16-1-1983. It is below the Tubular Steel sculpture in the middle of Five Ways Island.

dndimg alt="King Edward VI Five Ways School" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/KEVI Five Ways plaque (Jul 2009).JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

When the Westside Metro extension to Hagley Road opens at the end of 2021, passengers will have little idea that they are travelling under the site of a former grammar school!

The site of Five Ways Island today in May 2021, as seen from the top of Calthorpe Road. The school would have been approximately where the Stainless steel sculpture is today, although I suspect part of it could have been where Metropolitan House is now (built 1972 to 1974, refurbished 2015-16).

dndimg alt="Five Ways Island" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Five Ways Island (May 2021).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

 

King Edward VI Five Ways School today in Bartley Green

The site at Bartley Green has been developed ever since they moved from Five Ways in 1958. This includes the Eyles and Chowen Centres, the former and current home of the Sixth Form Centre. A music block and technology block have been added, as well as a Sports Hall and the MacCarthy Block. The Science Wing was also expanded. In recent years, a sports pavilion was built, as well as an astro turf playing field, a mobile classroom and an Observatory was built. The Eyles building was renovated into the Eyles-Music Block, as the old Music block had become too small.

It was one of the first schools to get computer technology in 1978. This was achieved with links to Aston University. Girls have been admitted to the school since 1988. The school today is the largest co-educational grammar schools in the West Midlands and one of the top five co-ed grammar schools nationally.

 

I took these photos (below) of King Edward VI Five Ways School, back in early March 2021, during a return visit to Bartley Reservoir. The views of the school all taken from Scotland Lane in Bartley Green.

dndimg alt="King Edward VI Five Ways School" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/KEVIFW Bartley Green (Mar 2021) (1).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

The view of the modern school buildings taken through the gate on Scotland Lane.

dndimg alt="King Edward VI Five Ways School" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/KEVIFW Bartley Green (Mar 2021) (2).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

This road is the exit from the school. The entrance road is to the left.

dndimg alt="King Edward VI Five Ways School" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/KEVIFW Bartley Green (Mar 2021) (3).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

This sign welcomes you to King Edward VI Five Ways School.

dndimg alt="King Edward VI Five Ways School" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/KEVIFW Bartley Green (Mar 2021) (4).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

An old King Edward's Royal Coat of Arms. I suspect they saved it from the old building at Five Ways in 1958. I'm not sure what else survived from the 1883 to 1958 building.

dndimg alt="King Edward VI Five Ways School" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/KEVIFW Bartley Green (Mar 2021) (5).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Zooming in to a modern Royal Coat of Arms sign of the school. Probably the Royal arms of King Edward VI?

dndimg alt="King Edward VI Five Ways School" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/KEVIFW Bartley Green (Mar 2021) (6).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

There is plenty of signs here you let you know that this is King Edward VI Five Ways School.

dndimg alt="King Edward VI Five Ways School" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/KEVIFW Bartley Green (Mar 2021) (7).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Later saw a tractor on the walk back fro Bartley Reservoir (before walking to Senneleys Park).

dndimg alt="King Edward VI Five Ways School" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/KEVIFW Bartley Green (Mar 2021) (8).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Walking past the school, was my first time back since around 1993-94 when I was looking at Secondary Schools to go to. I even put it at as my number one choice for a Grammar School to go to in Birmingham (ahead of Camp Hill). Unfortunately I failed the 11+, and ended up at my local Comprehensive school (which was in walking distance). Then again King Edward VI Five Ways was too far to travel on two buses each day. And I now think I should have put Camp Hill as number one (too late now 28 years later of course). King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Boys was much closer to get to on the 11C (my late brother went there). The journey to Bartley Green would have taken well over an hour (including the no 18 bus). I only ever did that journey once in 2015 when I first went to Bartley Reservoir.

 

Go here for the post on King Edward VI Aston School.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown. Can be found on Twitter: ellrbrown

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Elliott Brown History & heritage
19 May 2021 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

The Pen Museum at The Argent Centre on Frederick Street

The Pen Museum is in The Argent Centre at 60 Frederick Street in the Jewellery Quarter. The museum focusses on the history of the 19th Century pen trade. Including feather quills and steel pen nibs. Located in a former pen factory built in 1863. The building was recently refurbished. The museum is a charity and it needs our support. Run by a knowledgeable group of volunteers.

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The Pen Museum at The Argent Centre on Frederick Street





The Pen Museum is in The Argent Centre at 60 Frederick Street in the Jewellery Quarter. The museum focusses on the history of the 19th Century pen trade. Including feather quills and steel pen nibs. Located in a former pen factory built in 1863. The building was recently refurbished. The museum is a charity and it needs our support. Run by a knowledgeable group of volunteers.


The Pen Museum is located on Frederick Street in the Jewellery Quarter. The building was originally built as the Argent Works of 1862-63 by JG Pollard. It was a pen manufactory for Q E Wiley. They also installed Turkish baths here! Built of red brick with stone and gault and buff brick dressings. Now known as The Argent Centre, the building runs to Legge Lane, which had a refurbishment (completed in 2020).

The Argent Centre, seen here in early April 2021, fully restored at the Legge Lane and Frederick Street corner. The Pen Museum is a short walk away. A Grade II* listed building, it was reopened earlier in 2021. And The Pen Museum is lucky to be in such a historic building.

dndimg alt="The Argent Centre" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/PM AC FS 03042021 (2).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

 

Exterior of The Pen Museum

An early view of The Pen Museum, also called The Pen Room, in this view from Frederick Street during December 2012. I wouldn't go inside until the Birmingham Heritage Week visit of September 2016.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Dec 2012).JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

 

In September 2016, the view of the archway of The Argent Centre. Entrance to The Pen Museum via a door to the right.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (20).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

 

View of The Pen Museum during early April 2021. By now closed due to the lockdown. The gate and doors were closed. Getting closer to the 20th anniversary of the museum, which opened in late April 2001. They are not yet quite ready to reopen, that depends on the roadmap, as lockdown restrictions continue to be eased. At the time I was there to check out the restored Chamberlain Clock.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/PM AC FS 03042021 (1).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

 

The middle of May 2021, and I saw a 101 NXWM Platinum bus (to Handsworth) waiting outside of The Pen Museum, as I walked up to the new Costa Coffee at 32 Frederick Street. The day before indoor dining, but they had an outdoor space at the back where I could have my coffee.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/101 Pen Museum JQ (May 2021).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

 

The Birmingham Heritage Week visit to The Pen Museum, September 2016

That day, The Pen Museum was free to visit, but normally you would have to pay an entrance fee. The museum is based in a former pen factory in the heart of Birmingham's Jewellery Quarter. If you wanted to, you could make a pen nib or write your name in Braille. The museum opened in 2001. They also have early typewriters.


In the main room of The Pen Museum, you could see all the cabinets with all the pen nibs, bottles of ink and machinery used to make the pen nibs.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (1).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Bottles of ink for all kinds of fountain pens.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (12).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Boxes of various different pens. Such as pencil pens, crown pen diamond brand, red ink pens, telephone pen, the swan pen and so on.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (15).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Macniven & Camerons Pens "Pickwick". They used to cost 6d & 1'-per box.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (18).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Portraits of the late Prince Albert (In Memoriam), Queen Victoria, King George V & Queen Mary. As well as King Edward VIII (later the Duke of Windsor), King George VI and Queen Elizabeth II.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (19).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

 

Joseph Gillott's Victoria Works

There was an exhibition of Joseph Gillott, who was a pen maker to the Queen (Victoria). A display of Gillott pen nibs.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum Joseph Gillott (1) .jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

They also had a display cabinet to look at from the Victoria Works (which is opposite the museum on the corner of Frederick Street and Graham Street).

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum Joseph Gillott (2) .jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

This was a 1001 Spring Ground Mammoth Quill Circa 1845 - The Largest Pen Made. Made by Joseph Gillott of Birmingham.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum Joseph Gillott (3) .jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

More on Joseph Gillott here, plus women working in the factory.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (4).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

For more on Joseph Gillott go to this post.

 

George W. Hughes

Steel pen nibs made by George W. Hughes in this cabinet display.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (13).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

They were quite cheap to buy, a sample card for 1d, or sample boxes for only 6d.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (14).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

 

William and John Mitchell

Display cabinetts of pens and steel pen nibs made by William Mitchell.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (21).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

In the next cabinet is the steel pen nibs made by John Mitchell.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (22).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

 

Thessin & Co Magnetic Series of Pens

Cabinet displays here of pens and pencils. One of them was Thessin & Co Magnetic Series of Pens. Fountain pens made at various locations around Hockley in the 19th century (now the Jewellery Quarter).

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (16).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Here we see School Slates and Quill pens. Also various printed certificates.Also a set of Royal portable quills.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (17).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

 

The Boons & Blessings

The Boons & Blessings - The Pickwick - The Owl - The Waverley.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (2).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

These cabinets all about the Waverley pen nib.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (3).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Another sign on The Pickwick, the Owl and the Waverley Pen. Also Brandauer.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (10).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

 

Presses

A press in the corner. Now it can only be operated by museum staff only.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (5).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Close up to one of the presses near something about Workmen's Compensation Acts 1906 and 1923.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (8).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

One of the presses near the window, looking out onto Frederick Street. Joseph Gillott's Victoria Works is opposite, it opened in 1840.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (9).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

The presses are only used to make hardened nibs which are to be slit. A delicate "push" is all that is required on the handle to achieve this.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (11).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

 

Childrens's Classroom

A children's classroom to the back of the museum.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (6).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Portrait of Queen Victoria and certificates on the wall.

dndimg alt="The Pen Museum" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Pen Museum (Sept 2016) (7).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Photos taken by Elliott Brown. Can be found on Twitter: ellrbrown

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