Solihull prepares for Charter Day

This is an extract of a longer video by local film-makers and photographers, filmed in March 1954 when Princess Margaret presented then Urban District of Solihull with a Royal Charter of Incorporation as a Borough. It shows the area around Poplar Road and Warwick Road, including then Council House (now the Assembly Rooms pub).


Heritage & Local Studies Librarian

40th/50th/60th anniversary of Solihull Borough

Solihull is unique in being the only former Rural District (1894-1932) to have grown to the status of Metropolitan Borough in its own right.

2014 marks 60 years since HRH Princess Margaret visited Solihull to present the then Urban District (1932-54) with a Royal Charter of Incorporation as a Borough.

Solihull's Mace
The Mace is the symbol of Royal authority, delegated to the Mayor

Just ten years later, “the village”, as most Silhillians still called it, had grown to such an extent that the Municipal Borough served a population of 100,000. This was considered sufficient to become a County Borough in 1964, and take on responsibilities previously carried out for residents by the County Council.

Another ten years on, and 1974 saw the effect of the Local Government Act 1972, which re-organised local authorities and saw Solihull County Borough merge with Meriden Rural District and Hockley Heath Parish to form the Metropolitan Borough of Solihull we have today.

All this makes 2014 a special year for us: a 40th, 50th and 60th anniversary!

We’re hoping that you’ll be able to tell us your memories of the events in 1954, 1964, and 1974 that marked the rise of Solihull from an Urban District to a Metropolitan Borough.

Post your memories here, or e-mail


@OurSolihull changes to @SolihullLife

The New Year brings a fresh look for “Solihull Life In A Day”, which saw tweets, posts, photos, drawings and one-day diaries archived to give a snapshot of life in the Borough on an ordinary day – Tuesday 12th November 2013. You can see the curated themes at

We felt that Solihull Life shouldn’t just be for one day, so we’ve changed our Twitter and WordPress profiles to reflect our ongoing efforts to capture, preserve and share the life and heritage of the Borough. We’ll be featuring some of our photos and documents, and we’ll be asking for your help with some of our forthcoming projects.

2014 marks one hundred years since the outbreak of the First World War, and library staff have been working with local historians and community groups to find out about those with a connection to Solihull who served and gave their lives.

Less well-known is that 1st April 2014 marks the 40th anniversary of Solihull Metropolitan Borough, the 50th anniversary of Solihull County Borough, and the 60th anniversary of Solihull Municipal Borough, which saw Princess Margaret visit the then Urban District of Solihull to present the Royal Charter.

We’d be delighted to hear from you if you could contribute any anecdotes, stories or memorabilia relating to the First World War or the 40th/50th/60th anniversary of the Borough. Please email Tracey Williams at




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