Wystan Hugh Auden was born in York on 21st February 1907 and was the youngest of the three sons of parents Dr George Augustus Auden (1872-1957) and his wife, Constance Rosalie (née Bicknell) (1869-1941), who was a trained missionary nurse, although she did not practise. Dr Auden apparently named his son for St Wystan, having being fascinated by the Parish Church of St Wystan whilst living in Repton, Derbyshire.Continue reading “W. H. Auden and Solihull”
Ode for Solihull
On 21st May 2019, in a Poetry On Loan funded event, poet Giovanni Esposito – a.k.a. “Spoz” – joined library staff and members of the public on a guided walk around the historic heart of the old Solihull village.
After the walk, the participants returned to the Core for a well-earned break and a chat about Solihull’s history, looking at some of the thousands of old photographs in the library’s Heritage & Local Studies collections. Spoz then wrote a poem incorporating people’s suggestions and his own reflections on the local history of Solihull.
12th October 1914
Lieutenant Alexander Nigel Trotter, 3rd (Reserve) Battalion, The Royal Scots (Lothian Regiment) died of wounds in France on 12th October 1914, less than a month after his twentieth birthday.
Nigel, as he was known, was born in London on 17th September 1894 to parents Alexander Pelham Trotter and his wife Alys Fane Trotter (née Keatinge). Nigel had an older sister, Gundred Eleanor Trotter (1889-1975), known as “Gunda”, who was also born in London. Nigel’s local connection with the Solihull area is that he was educated at Packwood Haugh Preparatory School. Referred to now as “The First Packwood”, the school occupied a site in Glasshouse Lane, Hockley Heath from 1892 until 1940, when the school moved to “The Second Packwood” in Ruyton-XI-Towns near Shrewsbury, where it remains today. The original building in Glasshouse Lane has now been turned into 12 apartments, known as Fetherston Grange.