Our January meeting is a presentation by Paul Collins on the topic ‘By Tram from Dudley’.
Commences 8pm at St Saviour’s Church Hall, DY9 0NS. Visitors £2, including refreshments. Annual membership £10.
November’s meeting had a local flavour as our speakers, Pauline and Geoff Hayward, presented a very personal history of Churchill Forge on Ganlow Brook which rises in the Clent Hills. The Forge has been in the hands of Pauline’s Bache family for many years. It is now maintained as an historical legacy in the hands of a preservation trust as no commercial metalwork has been produced since Pauline’s father, Claude retired in 1969.
We now see Churchill in a rural setting but during the Industrial Revolution the Blakedown and Churchill area was an important local centre for the production of metalwork to meet domestic, agricultural and industrial needs.
Pauline and Geoff brought examples of the wares which had been produced in her father’s time which included forks, rakes and shovels. The proximity to a railway station allowed quick distribution of these wares to outlets such as Woolworths and Harrods in London. A speciality of the Forge was the production of ladles which were used in the glass and non-ferrous metal industries around Stourbridge. She played a DVD showing the workings of the Forge which featured her father demonstrating the process by which ladles were made from iron bars.
It is expected that the interest generated by this talk will lead to a visit by members to Churchill Forge in May next year.
Our meeting on 7th January sees Paul Collins presenting ‘By Tram from Dudley’. Visitors are most welcome at all our events – see hhfs.org.uk for details and contacts.