Viewing documents at The Core

We always aim to do our best to help with any queries relating to local history in connection with places in the Solihull Borough or former Rural District, but please book in advance of visiting The Core Library, if you need to view any books, photos, maps or archive documents.

This means we can ensure that you don’t have a wasted journey and that there is someone available to help you.

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30th March 1923

Former Gunner Walter Stanley Zair died on 30th March 1923 of pulmonary tuberculosis, caused by his war service.

Stan, as he was known, was born at Lindenhurst, Trafalgar Road, Moseley on 12th February 1881 and was the youngest of the nine children of whip manufacturer, George Zair (1839-1914), and his wife, Fanny (née Blackburn) who had married in Great Barr in 1865. His siblings were:

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Mayer Society

The Mayer Society evolved from the Solihull branch of the British Federation of University Women, which was established in 1973. In 1993, the Solihull association decided to separate from the national group and take the name of the branch’s second president – Marjorie Mayers (1898-1982) – whose widower, James (“Jack”) Bowen Mayers (1901-1990), bequeathed £250 to the group. For the sake of simplicity, the ‘s’ was left off the group’s name. The Mayer Society closed in October 2021.

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Midnight burial at Knowle 1899

According to various contemporary newspaper reports, at just after midnight on Thursday 19th January 1899, four hearses entered the Warwickshire village of Knowle. Each hearse carried the coffin of a deceased person whose remains had been disinterred (with Home Office permission) from Key Hill Cemetery, Birmingham.

The four people were all related and their remains were interred in a family vault in the churchyard of Knowle Parish Church. By the dim light of a lantern, the Vicar read a portion of the burial service, and the ceremony was witnessed by a police sergeant, overseer and the relatives of the deceased.

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Solihull Gas Works

The first general ordinary meeting of the shareholders of the Solihull Gas Company Ltd was held at Solihull Town Hall, The Square, at 10am on 20th October 1869. The limited liability company was formed by a number of local people who wanted gas and the company started with capital of £2,500.

Land was purchased in Wharf Lane and the gas works was built on this site adjoining the canal – presumably to keep the smell and smoke away from residential areas. There were very few houses in the vicinity at the time – the whole area around Lode Lane and Elmdon Heath was farmland.

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