Our next meeting is on Tuesday 1st November. There will be a presentation by Sandy Cale entitled ‘Elegant Georgian Worcester’. Sandy has been a Worcester Walks Green Badge Guide since 2000 and she will give us a pictorial guided walk through Worcester in Georgian times, dressed in period costume. Despite the ravages of post war town planning, Worcester still retains many magnificent Georgian buildings and frontages.
Commences 8pm at St Saviour’s Church Hall, DY9 0NS. Visitors are most welcome at all our events – see Home page for details. Annual membership £10
Fashions have changed over the years in the way in which we deal with our dearly departed. Cremation is now chosen by over 75% of us. However, in late Victorian times burial was almost universal and the Victorians had an obsession with conducting the most lavish funerals, often spending more on death than in life. Thus, on the wave of this obsession, in 1894 Newman Brothers completed a purpose built foundry and factory on the edge of the Jewellery Quarter in Birmingham to make some ‘brass’ in both senses on the word.
Newman Brothers were brass founders and manufacturers of high quality brass coffin fittings which were distributed all over Britain. The story of the rise and fall of this business was the topic of our speaker this month, Simon Buteux. Simon is the Director of the Birmingham Conservation Trust responsible for turning the old Newman Brothers’ works into Birmingham’s newest museum. He told us that Newman brass fittings were used on the coffins of many high profile figures including Joseph Chamberlain in 1914, Winston Churchill in 1964 and the Queen Mother in 2002. They also made fine quality funeral clothes in which one would have been ‘quite happy to be seen dead in’ (Simon’s quote). To keep up with trends in later years they made Birmingham City and Aston Villa football strips for ardent fans to be laid out in.
Our next meeting is on Tuesday 1st November. There will be a presentation by Sandy Cale entitled ‘Elegant Georgian Worcester’. Sandy has been a Worcester Walks Green Badge Guide since 2000. She will give us a pictorial guided walk through Worcester in Georgian times, dressed in period costume.
Visitors are most welcome at all our events – see home page for details and contacts.
The book “Hagley Miscellanea” by John-Homery Folkes, the architect of St.Saviour’s Hall, was first published in 1974. It was for private circulation and only 25 copies were printed. Forty years later it is considered sufficiently interesting to merit this reprint. The author (born 1906) has gathered a wide range of reminiscences that together give a picture of Hagley’s inhabitants, houses, industries, celebrations and entertainments in the century and more before the explosion of house-building in the 1960s.
The book includes: the early days of the railway station; the building of St. Saviour’s church and planning the cemetery; houses large and small; an attempt at encroachment in Church Street; the Rifle Corps and the Range; the nursemaid question!; Hagley celebrities; the Sunday postal delivery and church attendance and an eyewitness account of the fire at Hagley Hall on Christmas Eve 1925. The “Illustrations” section includes the programme for the Coronation Celebration of June 1911.
The book is priced at £5 and can be purchased from Happy Families or can be ordered online from Hagley History and Field Society.
The Society has now launched a new book entitled ‘Hagley: A Village at War 1914 – 1918’, researched and written by local author and member, Pat Dunn. It is based on the ‘Hagley Parish Magazines’ of the period and describes how the people of Hagley dealt with the problems presented by the Great War on the Home Front. The people and places featured on the front cover of June’s issue of the Hagley Village News feature in the book along with many others.
The book is priced at £4 and can be purchased at the Hagley Library or ordered online. Click on the book cover below to view the first few pages.