Ronald A. Webster (1944-1994), a silversmith and amateur songwriter living in Solihull in the early 1970s, wrote the lyrics for what became Roger Whittaker’s biggest-selling single.Continue reading “The Last Farewell”
William Henry Clark, a former Air Mechanic with the Royal Air Force, died in Shirley on 25th July 1922, aged 36, leaving his widow, Lilian, with three young children aged seven, five and two.Continue reading “25th July 1922”
I joined Compton Verney Art Gallery in 2008 as a Gallery Assistant because, although I am an historian, I have always loved art. Compton Verney seemed a treasure house in which to explore and satisfy my never-ending curiosity.Continue reading “Harry Ellard (1897-1983)”
On 6th March 1867, local jockey John Page (1844-1917) won the Grand National for the first time, riding the Duke of Hamilton’s horse, Cortolvin. He won the race at Aintree by five lengths. Five years later, he won the Grand National again on Casse Tete and, until his retirement in 1880, was one of the foremost jockeys in England and France.Continue reading “John Page – Shirley’s jockey”
Former Private Stephen Henry Kettle, aged 44, died on 26th January 1922 at St George’s Hospital, Doncaster, where he was receiving treatment for injuries received on active service in France. He is buried at St James’s Churchyard, Shirley, Solihull.Continue reading “26th January 1922”
On Tuesday 17th June 1941, Sergeant Harry Brooks, of the Warwickshire Constabulary, based at Shirley Police Station, was presented with the George Medal by His Majesty King George VI at Buckingham Palace. The George Medal was instituted in January 1941 to reward “acts of great bravery” and arose out of the strong desire to reward acts of civilian courage during the Blitz.Continue reading “Police Sergeant Harry Brooks GM”
One of Solihull’s most notable historians, John Burman, was born in Eccles, Greater Manchester on 19th March 1889 and was the eldest of the four children of parents Edwin Guest Burman (1855-1920) and Gertrude Mary Wood (1866-1950). Edwin had been born in West Bromwich but moved to Lancashire c.1881.Continue reading “John Burman (1889-1955)”
Former Private Leslie William Lively died at home in Shirley on 18th February 1921, aged 29. He was born in Birmingham on 28th May 1891 and was baptised at the parish church of his mother’s home town, Snitterfield, Warwickshire on 2nd August 1891.Continue reading “18th February 1921”
Until Solihull became a County Borough Council on 1st April 1964, the provision of state education in the area was the responsibility of Warwickshire County Council. We’re aware of five special schools in the Solihull urban/metropolitan district, catering for children with physical or learning disabilities:
- Tudor Grange (later Swanswell)
- Reynalds Cross
- Forest Oak
- Hazel Oak
In addition, there was also a special school at nearby Packwood Haugh, Warwickshire.
V. J. Day, 15th August 1945, marked the day when the Second World War effectively came to an end as Japan surrendered and all hostilities ceased.
The Warwick County News, 18th August 1945, summarised local events with the headline “Neighbourly co-operation was the keynote of Solihull’s VJ-Day celebrations” and the observation that the day was marked by a “mood of quiet thanksgiving or in the exuberant relief of pent-up feelings according to age or nature.”