Totehill, Blossomfield Road, Solihull

On 15th November 1940, a new Red Cross Auxiliary Hospital opened at Totehill, Blossomfield Road, Solihull. The house was built during 1901/2 and was originally the home of Stephen William Challen (1842-1937) of the Birmingham engineering firm, Taylor and Challen. It became a Red Cross convalescent home during the Second World War and was subsequently known as Red Cross House.

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High Street supermarkets, Solihull

On 25th July 1961, a new Burton’s supermarket opened in High Street, Solihull in the building that is now occupied by the Paramo Lounge and the Works.

Described in the Solihull News, 26th August 1961, as being “the most up-to-date building in Solihull’s old world High Street,” the “colourful” supermarket met with a mixed reaction from shoppers, with letter-writers to the newspaper professing themselves “shocked.” One housewife described the colours of the shop front as “garish and said that the character of the High Street had now been ruined.

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Cedarhurst

It looks as if Cedarhurst, Park Road, Solihull was built in the mid-1890s and was demolished around 1973. A building control plan at the Core Library Solihull (ref.: SOL/PS/1/1/647), dated March 1894, depicts one detached villa in Park Road, opposite Malvern House, which appears to be Cedarhurst, although not named as such.

The plan shows that the property was designed by architect John Henry Hawkes and built by Charles Bragg. The owner was Edward Bottomley, a grocer from Deritend, Birmingham.

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Solihull Post Office Robbery, 1884

On Tuesday 29th January 1884, a man drove a horse and trap up to the Post Office on Solihull High Street and asked the postmistress to cash some postal orders. Whilst she was talking to him, another man in the shop seized £49 in gold from the counter, then jumped into the trap and both men rode off in the direction of Birmingham. A policeman followed them but did not managed to overtake them.

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