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Transport
03 Oct 2019 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Southdown bus from the Tyseley Locomotive Works to Tyseley Station

For the open day weekend at the Tyseley Locomotive Works on the last weekend of September 2019, Vintage Trains had hired this green Southdown bus. While passengers arriving at Tyseley Station could walk the distance, for some they could ride for free on this bus to the entrance, before seeing the old trains. I later saw it on Kings Road in Tyseley, instead of using the lay-by.

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Southdown bus from the Tyseley Locomotive Works to Tyseley Station





For the open day weekend at the Tyseley Locomotive Works on the last weekend of September 2019, Vintage Trains had hired this green Southdown bus. While passengers arriving at Tyseley Station could walk the distance, for some they could ride for free on this bus to the entrance, before seeing the old trains. I later saw it on Kings Road in Tyseley, instead of using the lay-by.


Tyseley Locomotive Works

Before I got to the Tyseley Locomotive Works, I saw the green Southdown bus arriving at the entrance on the Warwick Road in Tyseley. At the back was route no 75. Licence plate no: EAP 984V. The bus is a Bristol VR. I think they hired it from Southampton?

Saw it turn right and stop just before the entrance. When passengers get off, they can get their e-ticket scanned, or buy a ticket for the open day in the entrance tent.

During my 3rd open day visit at the Tyseley Locomotive Works, view of the Southdown bus from the car park.

Passengers get off the Southdown bus, ready to head into the tent to get their QR code on their e-tickets scanned (unless they printed it). Or buy a ticket on the "door". Volunteers ready to great them.

Having dropped the passengers off, the Southdown bus starts to reverse out onto the Warwick Road.

The ticket inspector from Southdown, helps gets the traffic to stop, to let the bus reverse out. Doors were still open. I think he must have gotten on board before they closed the doors.

After this I saw the bus head up the Warwick Road towards Acocks Green. I think it must have turned onto Stockfield Road, then onto Rushey Lane, before going down Wharfdale Road. When I got to Tyseley Station, I saw that man putting up signs telling potential passengers where the bus was. It was on Kings Road.

Tyseley Station

The bus seen waiting at Kings Road in Tyseley, to take the next load of visitors to the Tyseley Locomotive Works open day. At the front it has route no 31 and British Rail Hire. Also found it it is 684 Beatrice.

On closer look, is a pair of adverts for the Great Central Railway. Travel on heritage steam and diesel trains in Leicestershire. I've yet to go on this one.

The side view of the Southdown bus on Kings Road in Tyseley. Would have thought a better photo would have been if it parked next to the Edwardian Tyseley Station (which dates to 1906), rather than the walls here with graffiti.

Leaving Kings Road, before I walked around Blythswood Road towards Rushey Lane. Not something I would normally see around here, after getting photos at Tyseley Station from the Wharfdale Road Bridge.

One last look at the bus from Blythswood Road. The start of yet another walk towards Acocks Green Village down the Warwick Road from Tyseley. At the end of Blythswood Road is the Tyseley Corner Cafe and The Sunrise Cafe on Rushley Lane. Although I prefer to go to the Costa in Acocks Green Village.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

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40 passion points
History & heritage
01 Oct 2019 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

Heritage buildings around Handsworth

Getting off the tram at Soho Benson Road, was so many Victorian buildings to see on the way towards Handsworth Park. Including pubs, schools, churches etc. I later walked to Winson Green Outer Circle. This area Boulton and Watt called home. 

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Heritage buildings around Handsworth





Getting off the tram at Soho Benson Road, was so many Victorian buildings to see on the way towards Handsworth Park. Including pubs, schools, churches etc. I later walked to Winson Green Outer Circle. This area Boulton and Watt called home. 


Find more of my Handsworth photos over on my Flickr. The first tram stop after the Jewellery Quarter is Soho Benson Road, other stops in the area are Winson Green Outer Circle and Handsworth Booth Street. On the day of my visit used Winson Green to return to the City Centre (not yet used Booth Street).

 

Getting off the West Midlands Metro tram at Soho Benson Road, first thing I saw was a primary school now called Benson Community School. A Grade II listed building, originally the Benson Junior School. Designed by HR Yeoville Thomason and Cooper Whitwell, it was opened by the Birmingham School Board in 1888. Built of red brick, laid in English bond, with yellow, terracotta dressings and a plain tile roof.

It was originally known as the Soho Road School. It owes a debt to the designs of Martin and Chamberlain, but it was not designed by them. It was built to accommodate 962 pupils. Thomason (on his own) was also the architect of Singers Hill Synagogue (1854) and the Council House in Victoria Square (1874-9).

The Black Eagle pub on Factory Road, Soho (near Handsworth). A red brick building, don't think it is listed.

The pub sign says the Black Eagle was rebuilt in circa 1895. So maybe there was pub on this site before that year?

 

Heading up St Michael's Hill, saw this clock tower. Turns out it is part of Handsworth Library. Also home to South & City College Birmingham. It's on Soho Road in Handsworth. A Grade II listed building as Public Library, Handsworth Council House and Job Preparation Unit. Built in 1878-9 by Alexander and Henman as the Urban District Council Offices (this was before Handsworth became part of Birmingham in 1911). Built of red brick and terracotta with stone dressings, it has a slate roof. An impressive looking clock tower, the clocks are timbered.

One of the first things to see when getting off the tram at Soho Benson Road (from Benson Road itself), is the spire of St Michael's Parish Church Handsworth. The church is a Grade II Listed Building as the Church of St Michael. Built in 1855 by W Bourne. It is a large sandstone church with ashlar dressings. Built on a hilltop site. The church is also visible from the Library of Birmingham on a clear view day of Handsworth.

Heading up St Michael's Hill towards Soho Road. St Michael's Road is just before Soho Road. Also Soho Avenue near the church leads to Soho House (former home of Matthew Boulton and now a museum). I did see signs for that (my only actual visit was in the summer of 2010). Walking past this church, the gates were locked, so I think no access apart from when services on. Do they do heritage open days here?

Crossing over between Soho Road and Soho Hill in Handsworth, I next saw the Villa Road Methodist Church. Not sure how old the building is, but it is now used by people of Caribbean and African heritage. Nearby on Rose Hill Road is King Edward VI Handsworth School for Girls.

The main reason for going to Handsworth, was to see the church where James Watt and Matthew Boulton are buried. St Mary's Church Handsworth is on Hamstead Road next to Handsworth Park. The 200th anniversary of the death of James Watt, and I wasn't expecting to find renovation works going on, so couldn't go in. It's Grade II* listed building as the Church of St Mary. Origins from the 12th or 13th centuries. Rebuilt in the 19th century.

This view of the churchyard and St Mary's Church Handsworth from Handsworth Park. Boulton & Watt are buried inside. The churchyard has been closed off for years and is in need of urgent restoration (before anyone can walk around it). The church is built of red sandstone in the Decorated style. There are memorials to James Watt by Thomas Rickman in 1826, also a marble statue by Chantrey in 1825 (was unable to see these myself). J A Chatwin made changes from 1876-80. There is also monuments by William and Peter Hollins

I had a look around Handsworth Park. This was from the Hamstead Road entrance. The lodge house or gate house dated 1897. I don't think it is listed.

This view of the lodge / gate house from the other side of the boating lake. It has a distinctive clock tower with turreted roof. See more photos of Handsworth Park in my post on that park. I later exited this half of the park from the same entrance then walked up Holly Road into the other half (I was unaware of the bridges over the Soho railway line).

After I left Handsworth Park, I headed along Grove Lane, on my way to Winson Green Outer Circle. First saw this church (photo came out blurry and I've tried to fix it best I could). Now the Church of God 7th Day Birmingham. It was formerly St Peter's Church. A Grade II listed building as the Church of St Peter. Built in 1905, the architect was J A Chatwin (one of his last churches). Red brick with stone dressings and a tiled roof. It is also near Arthur Road.

Also on Grove Lane is King Edward VI Handsworth Grammar School for Boys, also known originally as Handsworth Grammar School. It only joined the Foundation of the Schools of King Edward VI in September 2017, being independent before that. It was founded in 1862. It's a Grade II Listed Building as Handsworth Grammar School. Built in 1862 by Mr Bidlake of Wolverhampton.

In the middle of this building is this distinctive clock tower. The school admits pupils (boys) aged 11 to 18. While there is the nearby King Edward VI Handsworth School for Girls (on Rose Hill Road), girls have been admited to the Sixth Form since September 1997).

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

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40 passion points
Transport
01 Oct 2019 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

West Midlands Metro trams at Soho Benson Road and Winson Green Outer Circle

I headed to Handsworth for a walk towards Handsworth Park. Got off my first West Midlands Metro tram at Soho Benson Road. I later headed to Winson Green Outer Circle after leaving the park. Long walk. Trams all blue now, not seen any in pink! Tram 30 from Grand Central to Soho Benson Road. Tram 35 from Winson Green Outer Circle to Corporation Street. Also saw tram 32 again.

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West Midlands Metro trams at Soho Benson Road and Winson Green Outer Circle





I headed to Handsworth for a walk towards Handsworth Park. Got off my first West Midlands Metro tram at Soho Benson Road. I later headed to Winson Green Outer Circle after leaving the park. Long walk. Trams all blue now, not seen any in pink! Tram 30 from Grand Central to Soho Benson Road. Tram 35 from Winson Green Outer Circle to Corporation Street. Also saw tram 32 again.


Soho Benson Road Tram Stop

The next tram stop on from Jewellery Quarter, I caught West Midlands Metro tram 30 from Grand Central to Soho Benson Road. Blue with batteries on top. I think this is the tram stop to use for Soho House, as saw signs as I left.

The tram heads onto Winson Green Outer Circle on it's way towards Wolverhampton.

Railway bridges above from the Soho Loop from Birmingham New Street towards Hamstead (avoiding Perry Barr). I went on a train once up there.

Winson Green Outer Circle Tram Stop

After the walk to Handsworth Park I headed to Winson Green Outer Circle to go back to the City Centre. First up to arrive was West Midlands Metro tram 32. Seen here heading from Soho Benson Road.

The battery-less tram with lime green adverts for OLA. See my tram 32 post here West Midlands Metro tram 32 gone blue with OLA adverts too!

Island platforms here due to not being much room. Also the main railway line from Birmingham Snow Hill to Worcester runs next to it on the other side of the fence.

Tram 32 taking the steep climb up the tram bridge towards Handsworth Booth Street (the next tram stop).

Next up was tram 35. Heading down the steep tram bridge.

Getting closer on the tram bridge, all in blue.

Arriving at Winson Green Outer Circle before I got on this tram to head back into the City Centre.

Later back at Corporation Street Tram Stop after I got off. The tram has lost the Angus Adams name (assume that West Midlands Metro may reapply it soon?).

Was a Police incident at the bottom of the ramp to Grand Central, so didn't take any more tram photos, but saw a few more at Grand Central from Caffe Nero.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

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40 passion points
Transport
01 Oct 2019 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Another NXWM bus in classic cream WM Travel livery

I saw the National Express West Midlands bus 4780 on the 94 bus route at the end of Moor Street Queensway near Jennens Road / James Watt Queensway earlier in September 2019. It was in the classic WM Travel livery of cream and navy blue. I've also seen it on the 65 on The Priory Queensway.

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Another NXWM bus in classic cream WM Travel livery





I saw the National Express West Midlands bus 4780 on the 94 bus route at the end of Moor Street Queensway near Jennens Road / James Watt Queensway earlier in September 2019. It was in the classic WM Travel livery of cream and navy blue. I've also seen it on the 65 on The Priory Queensway.


I missed the last Bus Bash that was held at the home of Moseley Rugby Club at Billesley Common, and saw this bus the following day on Monday 9th September 2019. Another one of National Express West Midlands buses transformed into one of the classic liveries of their predessors.

4780 on that day was on the 94 to Chelmsley Wood. With a Swansea University advert. In the classic cream and navy blue livery of WM Travel (or West Midlands Travel). Seen here in Masshouse on Moor Street Queensway

I've since seen it on the 65 on The Priory Queensway, but didn't take a new photo of it.

 

The next vintage bus post will be the green Southdown bus used for the Tyseley Locomotive Works open day weekend.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

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40 passion points
Environment & green action
30 Sep 2019 - Elliott Brown
Inspiration

Handsworth Park the park near where Boulton and Watt are buried

Went to Handsworth to check out St Mary's Church and Handsworth Park. The church was closed for renovation works so couldn't go inside. The park has a boating lake and an arts trail. Found two of The Big Sleuth 2017 bears in one half of the park. I got the tram but no 16 bus route is nearby if I go again! 

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Handsworth Park the park near where Boulton and Watt are buried





Went to Handsworth to check out St Mary's Church and Handsworth Park. The church was closed for renovation works so couldn't go inside. The park has a boating lake and an arts trail. Found two of The Big Sleuth 2017 bears in one half of the park. I got the tram but no 16 bus route is nearby if I go again! 


See also my Handsworth heritage buildings post. Find all my my Handsworth Park photos over on my Flickr.

The main entrance gates to Handsworth Park from Hamstead Road. I continued on to get close to St Mary's Church, until I noticed that their was renovation works. I then crossed over the road for some more views of the church, before heading into the park. The gate on the right was open on my visit.

Before I got to St Mary's Church on Hamstead Road in Handsworth, I had a look at the lodge house in Handsworth Park. Dated 1897. Not listed.

I had a walk around the boating lake, walking anti-clockwise. The lodge / gate house of 1897 with it's distinctive clock tower and turreted roof.

The Victorian Drinking Fountain Canopy, now part of the Handsworth Park Arts Trail. Probably dating to the late 19th century. Originally called The Austin Lines Fountain. The drinking fountain itself has long since been removed. This view from the Hamstead Road, through the metal fence above the brick wall (on the walk to St Mary's Church, noticed a part of the wall that is broken and in urgent need of repair).

The boating lake from the Hamstead Road end of Handsworth Park. Plenty of Canada geese and gulls in this lake. Saw some boats at the other end of the lake.

Several boats near the island in the middle of the lake. They were up-side-down!

A relatively new sculpture unveiled in 2017, called SS Journey, made by the sculptor Luke Perry. Seen from the path I took on the walk around the lake.

It is dedicated to the brave individuals who have left their homes around the world and made the journey to Handsworth and other parts of the UK, seeking a new life for themselves and their families. The sculpture is cast in bronze. I think the ship part looks like it was made of steel. It faces one corner of the boating lake.

Saw this squirrel on top of a bench. As per usual, when you get close to a squirrel they run away! It's already looking autumnal in his park with leaves on the lawn.

What looks like an old drinking fountain. It's called Umbrello and it is Grade II listed. It was presented to the park in 1888 by Austin B Lines. Octagonal in plan. Had two shields with inscriptions on them. One of them had a pelican on it.

I eventually headed back to the Hamstead Road entrance / exit. And then headed down Holly Road. I was aware of the Soho railway line running through the park, but missed using any of the footbridges here. I re-entered the other half of the park when I saw one of The Big Sleuth bears from summer 2017.

In the summer of 2017, I didn't get around to travelling to Handsworth, so missed seeing The Big Sleuth bears. Although around late July 2017 came back on the bus through Handsworth after doing Bearwood, Dudley and West Bromwich. These bears are now part of the Handsworth Park Arts Trail, and were installed in October 2017.

This is Sun Guardian created by Goosensi working with Friends of Handsworth Park and the Handsworth Community.

 

Seen outside of the Handsworth Wellbeing Centre (Handsworth Leisure Centre) was Well Active Bear. Created by Mark Copplestone and Jennie Saunders working with Birmingham Wellbeing Service.

Seen on this cylinder outside of the Handsworth Wellbeing Centre was this piece of graffiti street art, part of the Arts Trail in the park. Handsworth Revolution - Steel Pulse.

The Handsworth Playcentre is to the left of the Steel Pulse piece. Mostly painted in sky blue paint, with a variety of other colours. Part of the Handsworth Leisure / Wellbeing Centre.

After this, I left the park via Grove Lane and then headed towards Winson Green Outer Circle Tram Stop. Which was about a 20 minute walk away. Maybe one day a new railway station could be built in the middle of the park. Apparently Handsworth Wood Station was here from 1896 to 1941. Passengers found the no 16 bus to be more convenient. Maybe a new staton could be built there on the line from Birmingham New Street towards Walsall on the Chase Line. Similiar to the proposals to rebuild the stations on the Camp Hill Line (Hazelwell, Kings Heath and Moseley).

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

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