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Classic Architecture
30 Apr 2020 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

The restoration of Lightwoods House in Lightwoods Park

Over the years from 2011 to 2017, I travelled to Lightwoods Park in Bearwood, Sandwell to check on the progress of the restoration of Lightwoods House. In the early years it was covered in scaffolding. The house was built in the late 18th century and re-fronted in the mid 19th century. Birmingham City Council handed the park over to Sandwell MBC in November 2010.The house reopened in 2017.

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The restoration of Lightwoods House in Lightwoods Park





Over the years from 2011 to 2017, I travelled to Lightwoods Park in Bearwood, Sandwell to check on the progress of the restoration of Lightwoods House. In the early years it was covered in scaffolding. The house was built in the late 18th century and re-fronted in the mid 19th century. Birmingham City Council handed the park over to Sandwell MBC in November 2010.The house reopened in 2017.


Lightwoods Park and House

This will be the first of several posts relating to Lightwoods Park in Bearwood. In this post we will be looking at Lightwoods House.

First off some history from the Wikipedia page (link above). Lightwoods House was built in the late 18th century and was altered in the 19th century. It is a Grade II listed building. The house was built for Jonathan Grundy in 1780 who lived in the house until his death in 1803. The house was later bought by soap manufacturer George Adkins in 1865 who passed it to his son Caleb. In 1902 the grounds and the house were up for sale after the death of Caleb Adkins. A committee purchased the estate and handed it to the Birmingham Corporation who opened the grounds as a park. More land was purchased in 1905 for the park. In 1971 Lightwoods House was converted into studios for Hardman company who vacated the building in 2008. In 2010, Birmingham City Council handed Lightwoods Park over to Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council.

In the following years Lightwoods House was decaying, and it was only announced in 2015 that the house would be restored. Restoration work was completed in 2016, including the restored Shakespeare Garden, and also includes and Edwardian Tea Room. Other structures around the park were also restored.

2011

My first views of Lightwoods House from my first ever visit to Lightwoods Park back in March 2011.

Scaffolding was all over the house, and all the windows were boarded up.

Close up it looked like there was a P & M Demolition sign around the house. I didn't look very safe or good at this point in time. And was only months after Sandwell Council took over the running of the park.

The side view of the house close to the Shakespeare Garden.

In December 2011 I went back to Lightwoods Park. When there was an event on at the time called Bearwood on Ice. Which was the only outdoor ice rink in the West Midlands that Christmas. So only passed the park to see this event, and not really Lightwoods House (which you can see in the background on the right).

There was artwork in the boarded up windows of Lightwoods House. Which aren't too visible from this distance.

On these ice rink zoom ins you can see the pictures on the windows. They look like old photos or drawings of what the rooms in Lightwoods House used to look like.

Would assume that Lightwoods House was stabalised by this point and no longer in danger of being demolished. After all it is Grade II listed (not that that stops other old listed buildings getting knocked down. There was a small Christmas market here and an inflatable bear.

2014

Another visit to Lightwoods Park in July 2014. Nothing much to update about it at this point other than the fences around it, and the Lottery Funded sign (with the National Lottery, Heritage Lottery Fund and Big Lottery Fund).

Saw this view of Lightwoods House from the back on Adkins Lane through this gate.

Windows at the time were still all boarded up. This is the area that would later become the car park for Lightwoods House. The Shakespeare Garden to the left. The old gates and fences would be replaced. The metal railings on the left was later replaced with a period style brick wall. The old surface of this area was also replaced for the car park that was later built here.

2016

In January 2016 there was fences and hoarding all around Lightwoods House and green sheets around the scaffolding. Evidence that the restoration had begun.

The fences outside of the house at the time meant that visitors to the park couldn't walk past it, but at least the restoration was under way.

So you had to walk near the wall close to Hagley Road West for views like this.

Was a bit hard to see what was going on behind the scaffolding. Looks like they were doing the roof and tiles.

This view from Hagley Road West. They were also restoring the Bandstand.

An update from September 2016. The scaffolding had come down and the house was looking as good as new.

The fences was still in front of the house and path, so saw again from the same views as earlier in 2016.

I also got this view through the fence of the left side of Lightwoods House. Into 2017 and it would be fully restored.

2017

By November 2017, Lightwoods House and all the other old structures in Lightwoods Park were fully restored and reopened. This is the best the house has looked in more than a decade. The Drinking Fountain is close to the entrance of the Shakespeare Garden.

The footpath has been re-tarmaced and the brickwork looking fresh and clean.

Close up of Lightwoods House. Compared to my old March 2011 views, this looks much better. Taking it back to 1780.

There is a new Edwardian Tea Room on the left. Although I didn't go in there. It is called Jonathan's in the Park.

Further back from Lightwoods House, they installed some picnic benches. Car park entrance to the left.

The Big Sleuth bear that was in Warley Woods in the summer of 2017 is now directly in front of the Edwardian Tea Room. Bentley the Bearwood Bear by the artist Rebecca Cresswell working with PAID (Positive Activities Innovative Development) and it was funded by PAID and Sandwell Council. It wasn't part of The Big Sleuth charity auction, it was paid for independently.

The back of Bentley the Bearwood Bear as he observes his new surroundings after the summer spent in the Warley Woods.

More Lightswoods Park posts coming soon, including one on the Shakespeare Garden.

Follow Lightwoods House on Twitter.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Now at more than 1,120 followers. Thank you.

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Green open spaces
30 Apr 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

The secret Nature Reserve at Swanshurst Park

I've been to many times to Swanshurst Park but the Nature Reserve area with all the trees, I've never been around before, at least not until lockdown. For an afternoon walk on the 27th April 2020, we went around the grass path, down the hill. And followed the stream. Over the plank bridges then checking out the logs over the mud near the bulrushes.

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The secret Nature Reserve at Swanshurst Park





I've been to many times to Swanshurst Park but the Nature Reserve area with all the trees, I've never been around before, at least not until lockdown. For an afternoon walk on the 27th April 2020, we went around the grass path, down the hill. And followed the stream. Over the plank bridges then checking out the logs over the mud near the bulrushes.


Apparently there used to be a pitch & putt golf course down here, where all the trees are now. We headed down the hill (leaving the main path near the Moseley New Pool) and hopped over the stream.

Walking along the shallow stream, saw these in the long grass.  Large bittercress.

Over one of the wooden planks and towards the logged path.

Fallen tree branches over the stream. Quite muddy here.

Trying to be careful not to fall over here, some of the logs were quite loose.

One more wooden plank to cross the mucky stream. More logs before they ran out.

Beyond the logs were some bulrushes on the far right.

Zooming in to one of the bulrushes was some long-tailed tits. Luckily they didn't fly away as I got the photo.

It was way too muddy beyond here, didn't want to get my shoes and jeans mucky, so we turned back.

Walking round the other grass paths, saw another path, that we didn't take.

Appeared to be a lot of people getting their daily walks in here. You don't just have to walk around the tarmaced paths. Also the grass paths in the fields were quite dry. Been a dry month on lockdown.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Now at more than 1,120 followers. Thank you.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

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History & heritage
28 Apr 2020 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

J. R. R. Tolkien in Sarehole from 1896 - 1900

Did you know that J. R. R. Tolkien as a small boy moved to the Sarehole area in 1896, which at the time was a small hamlet outside of Birmingham. He would live here with his mother Mabel and his younger brother Hilary until 1900. They lived in a house on the Wake Green Road, which was close to Moseley Bog and Sarehole Mill. The area would later be the basis for the Shire in The Hobbit.

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J. R. R. Tolkien in Sarehole from 1896 - 1900





Did you know that J. R. R. Tolkien as a small boy moved to the Sarehole area in 1896, which at the time was a small hamlet outside of Birmingham. He would live here with his mother Mabel and his younger brother Hilary until 1900. They lived in a house on the Wake Green Road, which was close to Moseley Bog and Sarehole Mill. The area would later be the basis for the Shire in The Hobbit.


For my original Tolkien post follow this link: J.R.R. Tolkien's Birmingham (inspiration for The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings). This Did you know post will be an expansion of J. R. R. Tolkien's time in the Sarehole area (now in Moseley, Birmingham).

264 Wake Green Road / 5 Gracewell Cottages

The Tolkien family moved from South Africa to outside of Birmingham in 1896, after his father died. They moved to a house in Sarehole, which at the time was a hamlet in Worcestershire (it is now in Moseley, Birmingham and close to Hall Green). John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, known as Ronald, lived with his mother Mabel and younger brother Hilary at 264 Wake Green Road (also known as 5 Gracewell Cottages). Ronald's mother taught the children at home. He enjoyed exploring the nearby Moseley Bog and Sarehole Mill.

The above photo taken from the BM & AG Sarehole Mill Guide Book published in 2002.

This view of the cottages on Wake Green Road during December 2012. They are now homes of retired people and are private residences.

My dentist is around the corner of Swanshurst Lane, and I usually walk around the corner to the no 5 bus stop on Wake Green Road. This view was from about April 2013. Although it's closer to 260 Wake Green Road. No 264 would be further to the left of here.

After another visit to the dentist, I got this view on my smartphone camera in early March 2020. So no 264 would be further down to the left of the no 5 bus stop. Sometimes the ladies that live here would use the bus stop to go to town.

Gracewell Homes Foster Trust

Seen on a walk down Wake Green Road on lockdown (earlier in April 2020) is what is now the Gracewell Homes Foster Trust. It is possible that these brick homes could have been there in Tolkien's time. The first two views on the walk to Moseley Bog via Thirlmere Drive and Pensby Close.

The house on the right looks a bit like a Mock Tudor house. Although I've not found any details about how old it actually is.

Three cyclists socially distancing on the ride down Wake Green Road past the Gracewell Homes Foster Trust. The entrance to the Sarehole Mill Recreation Ground is a bit further down on the left. This was on the walk down from Moseley Bog (leaving it at the playing field at Windermere Road).

The Chalet

One of the oldest houses in the Sarehole area, this cottage was called The Chalet, and is on Green Road. It is possible that the Tolkien boys could have walked past it as it would have been around there at the time. Just up from the Green Road ford (where the River Cole crosses it). It is a Grade II listed building dating to the early 19th century. Seen earlier in April 2020 on the lockdown walk from the Sarehole Mill Recreation Ground via the Green Road ford to Sarehole Mill and back.

Sarehole Mill

One of my Sarehole Mill photos was in this post: Birmingham's architectural gems - we go back in time!. Always room for some expansion.

From the October 2013 free open day at Sarehole Mill which was after the 2012-13 restoration (the previous major restoration was in 1969). This open day was part of the Hall Green Arts Festival. The mill is a Grade II listed water mill on the River Cole. Originally the area was called Sarehole, but it is now on the Hall Green / Moseley border near Cole Bank Road (and close to Tolkien's childhood home on Wake Green Road). It is one of two working water mills in Birmingham (the other mill is at New Hall Mill). On the Open Day was various tables selling things. The Bakehouse is to the right (but wouldn't be fully restored until early 2020).

Ronald and Hilary Tolkien would have sneaked into the mill like they always do while the miller was covered in white dust from grinding the bones for fertiliser. View of the north waterwheel mill gears, which drove three pairs of milestones on the first floor. They are only in working order on demonstration days now. Also called The Flour Bins.

The children nicknamed him 'The White Ogre' and they would run away when he shouted at them to leave. More gears that drives the waterwheel.

The back of Sarehole Mill near the Mill Pool. There is a gate from the main courtyard to the right of here that you have to close. Then there is another gate to the short walk around the mill pool that also needs to be closed behind you. Have been around here several times over the years.

The view of Sarehole Mill from the Mill Pool, while it was clear. There is decking to stand on to the right. The mill made a nice reflection in the mill pool water. In later years it kept getting full of algae. Especially in the winter.

Moseley Bog

My original Moseley Bog post is here: Moseley Bog from my December 2012 and September 2016 visits.

A walk around Moseley Bog earlier in April 2020 on lockdown. Getting in again via Thirlmere Road and Pensby Close again. Had hoped to make it to the Yardley Wood Road entrance / exit, but we ended up passing through the playing field near Windermere Road, so instead left via there and walked down Wake Green Road.

For Tolkien as a child, he treasured his memories of exploring it with his younger brother. It was the inspiration for 'the Forest' in The Lord of the Rings.

The Bog is the site of two Bronze Age 'burnt mounds' which are a Scheduled Ancient Monument. These days there is a wooden planked path that you can walk around on. But you can still see how boggy the area was. It was dry and sunny on my last walk here.

The wooden planks take you safely over the Bog. I expect the Tolkien brothers didn't have this in their day as children, so they probably got quite a bit muddy!

A body of water between the fallen tree branches. So much inspiration for the young Tolkien for his later Middle Earth novels.

And look at the trees. This would have provided inspiration as well. In the books and the movies was giant talking walking trees (that could carry the small Hobbits).

The Hungry Hobbit

There is a cafe / sandwich bar near the roundabout on Wake Green Road. It used to be called The Hungry Hobbit. Seen here in January 2011. But when the Tolkien estate found out about this name they were not happy. They were threatened with legal action.

Second view from January 2011 when it was still called the Hungry Hobbit (at the time). The sign below says Sandwich Bar. Visitors to Moseley Bog and / or Sarehole Mill can go here (although Sarehole Mill has it's own small tea room).

This view of the Hungry Hobbit Sandwich Bar during March 2011 (when it was closed).

By the time I took a photo update in March 2017, they removed two letters "it" to rename the cafe as Hungry Hobb (closed when I saw it like this). Hopefully the issues with the Tolkien estate have been settled by now.

One of the signs you would find around the island, either on Cole Bank Road, Wake Green Road or the bottom of Swanshurst Lane. For the Hungry Hobb Cafe. They have clearly changed the sign over the years (this view also from March 2017).

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Now at more than 1,120 followers. Thank you.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

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70 passion points
History & heritage
27 Apr 2020 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

Birmingham from the Domesday Book in 1086 to 1300 when William de Birmingham was Lord of the Manor

There is a model in the Birmingham History Galleries at the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, showing what Birmingham might have looked like in the year 1300. The Lord of the Manor was William de Birmingham. Did you know why Moat Lane is called Moat Lane? There used to be a moat in what is now the Bull Ring area and the de Birmingham family lived in a manor house there.

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Birmingham from the Domesday Book in 1086 to 1300 when William de Birmingham was Lord of the Manor





There is a model in the Birmingham History Galleries at the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, showing what Birmingham might have looked like in the year 1300. The Lord of the Manor was William de Birmingham. Did you know why Moat Lane is called Moat Lane? There used to be a moat in what is now the Bull Ring area and the de Birmingham family lived in a manor house there.


Birmingham has a history going back centuries, way before we gained City Status in 1889. And way before the Chamberlain's of the late 19th and early to mid 20th centuries and way before Boulton and Watt in the late 18th and early 19th Centuries. The Roman's had a fort in Birmingham close to the site of what is now the University of Birmingham around 48 AD.

 

The following photos below were originally taken at The Birmingham History Galleries at the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery in November 2012. These were in the section called Origins up to 1700.

This panel is about Medieval Birmingham. It mentions that in 1086 Birmingham was valued at just £1. It was recorded in the 'Domesday Book' by the Normans (20 years after the Norman Conquest of England). 200 years later Birmingham was one of the wealthiest trading centres in Warwickshire.

This panel about Birmingham before Birmingham. The town came into existence in the 1160s. People have lived in the area for hundreds of thousands of years. Many of Birmingham's place names are of Anglo Saxon origin. Archaeology at the Bullring from 1997 to 2001 didn't find any finds before the 12th century (or evidence of a major settlement before then).

When Birmingham got a charter to hold a market, this was in 1166 by the Lord of the Manor Peter de Bermingham. That's when Birmingham began to develop. Around the area that is today's Bullring. This is what Peter de Birmingham could have looked like.

It was the year 1166 when Peter de Birmingham as the Lord of the Manor bought a market charter from the king, Henry II, which entitled him to hold a weekly market. He made profits from the rent paid by the craftspeople who settled here and the traders who came to sell their goods.

This large model was near the entrance of the gallery and was what Birmingham could have looked like in the year 1300 when William de Birmingham was the Lord of the Manor.

At this end of the model, it shows the moat where the Lord of the Manor's house would be.

A close up look at the moat. The de Birmingham family might have decended from Norman ancestors, other sources suggest they decend from an Anglo-Saxon family. The market would have been held within the land of the moated manor house, or just outside it. Today the site of the moat is where Moat Lane Car Park is (it has been renamed to Markets Car Park) and the former site of the Birmingham Wholesale Market (demolished for the proposed Smithfield development). The moat was filled in during the 19th century. Maps from the 19th century show the moat was still there in 1816, but gone by the 1830's as by then the Smithfield Market was on the land.

Settlements to the north of the moat. There was a church in the middle. That was St Martin's Church.

This direction towards St Martin's Church and Market Place with the Manor House and Moat at the far end. Today this would be the location of the modern Bullring (built 2003). East Mall would be to the left (Selfridges) and the West Mall would be to the right (towards Debenhams). Spiceal Street would wind around up past St Martin's Church then up St Martin's Walk. The market place has changed a lot in 850 plus years.

This map in the exhibition might make things a bit clearer. To the south was the Manor House and Moat. Above that was the Market Place. A Watermill was near the moat. And most of the countryside was Deer Park. By the year 1300 around 1,500 people were living in Birmingham. New Street, Park Street and Edgbaston Street all existed by the year 1300.

This is William de Birmingham. He's the Lord of the Manor and everyone who lives in Birmingham pays him rent. He reduced the size of his deer park so that people can build houses on his land and he increased the rental income.

Another map of Birmingham in 1300. The centre of Birmingham is marked by the yellow rectangle including the Church (St Martin's), the Market and the Manor House. The Deer Park is on two sides of the town. To the north west was the Priory Hospital. New Street goes to the west. To the south west was the Parsonage. The River Rea flows from the north east to the south (passing the areas later known as Deritend and Digbeth but not marked on this map).

There is a series of four history panels located around the Bullring. I got photos of them back in 2009 and 2010. They mention that archaeological digs were carried out as part of the Bullring redevelopment. The digs uncovered evidence of Birmingham's medieval origins about 2 metres below the present ground level and it is known that by the 1300s Birmingham was a thriving medieval market and industrial town.

1. High Street.

This was located outside of the Pavilions. Seen in October 2010.

It says Birmingham by the year 1300 had a population of 1,500. It had houses, markets and industry and was thriving. The Priory or Hospital of St Thomas was located at the northern end of Dale End between Bull Street and Old Square (where the name The Priory Queensway comes from).

2 Edgbaston Street

Located on the walk towards Debenhams. Seen in May 2009.

Edgbaston Street was one of the oldest streets in Birmingham. In medieval times it linked the moated manor house with Parsonage Moat and carried traffic to and from the busy Bull Ring Market. An archaeological dig on Edgbaston Street (below the Indoor Market building) showed that a 13th century tannery was tucked in at the rear of the houses fronting the main street. Was one of the earliest tanneries now known to have existed in the Bull Ring and Deritend.

3 St Martin's Square

This was on the wall below Selfridges, but was moved in 2011 when the Spiceal Street development was built (Hand Made Burger Co was at this site until 2020). Seen in August 2009.

St Martin's, the parish church in Birmingham was built in the 12th century. The dig done in advance of the landscaping around the church as part of the Bullring development. Most of the burials found remains dating to the late 18th and throughout the 19th century. No remains from Medieval times were outside.

4 Park Street

This was on Park Street near Birmingham Moor Street Station. Seen in August 2009.

This area was the Lord of the Manor's deer park. Archaeological digs at Moor Street and Park Street (below what is now Moor Street Car Park) discovered a large ditch that was the boundary between the town and deer park in the 12th century. By the 13th century, the park's use for hunting gave way to the demands for the land close to the Bull Ring. As a result of the success of the markets, the Lord of the Manor abandoned the deer park. The ditch was infilled and Moor Street and Park Street were created to provide additional building land. 13th century pottery was made here, including metal-working, horn-working, born-working and textile production.

No wonder they called Birmingham The Workshop of the World. And this was as early as the 13th century!

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Now at over 1,120 followers. Thank you.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

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100 passion points
Green open spaces
22 Apr 2020 - Elliott Brown
Inspiration

Beacon Hill at the Lickey Hills Country Park

Getting to the Lickey Hills Country Park is hard when you don't drive. You get the bus as far as you can and walk to Beacon Hill. Then there is a long walk to the part of the Lickey Hills that you are trying to get to. Technically, the Lickey Hills is within Bromsgrove District, Worcestershire. I went in May 2013 and last time back in January 2018. The walk from Cofton Hackett.

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Beacon Hill at the Lickey Hills Country Park





Getting to the Lickey Hills Country Park is hard when you don't drive. You get the bus as far as you can and walk to Beacon Hill. Then there is a long walk to the part of the Lickey Hills that you are trying to get to. Technically, the Lickey Hills is within Bromsgrove District, Worcestershire. I went in May 2013 and last time back in January 2018. The walk from Cofton Hackett.


I think I will have to do several Lickey Hills Country Park posts.

This one will be about my visits to Beacon Hill in the past. In another post I will detail the walk from Barnt Green Station towards the Lickey Hills Visitor Centre (was very steep going up the hill).

Some history (from the Wikipedia page, link above). The Lickey Hills is 10 miles south west of Birmingham and 24 miles north east of Worcester. Close to the south of Rednal and near Barnt Green. It is half a mile from Cofton Hackett. It is one of the oldest parks managed by Birmingham City Council.

The park exists as it is now due to the Birmingham Society for the Preservation of Open Spaces in the early 20th century, which inlcuded members of the Cadbury family. The society gave the park to the people of Birmingham in 1888, and more land added in 1933. There used to be a tram service that terminated at Rednal. The park is a Green Flag recognised park.

May 2013

In May 2013, I made a second attempt to get to Beacon Hill (which was successful this time). In April 2013, I did go up Rose Hill, but the paths up to the Lickey Hills Visitor Centre were closed, and I probably turned back (and ended up in Cofton Park instead). I returned a few weeks later, getting off the bus at the bottom of Lickey Road on Leach Green Lane and walked towards Beacon Hill. The route up to the hill via the trees was quite steep, but once up there, the views were amazing.

Walking up I could see the sand pits in the Lickey Hills Golf Course.

Shadows from the trees, on this dirt path.

Trees down the hill.

Near the top of Beacon Hill where the grass is.

Welcome to Beacon Hill at the Lickey Hills Country Park. Finally made it!

Panoramic of the trees near the path I had just came up (which would be on the right of this picture).

View of the Birmingham Skyline. Just before there is the likes of Longbridge.

And you can also see Bournville College which is at Longbridge Town Centre (built where the old MG Rover / Austin Factory was).

This view towards Rubery. Over to the left is the Waseley Hills Country Park, can see those three paths in a triangular shape from here.

This is the Beacon Hill Toposcope.

It was originally built in 1907 as a Gift to the City of Birmingham by Edward, George Jnr, and Henry Cadbury.

It was restored in 1987-88 by Manpower Services Commission and Birmingham City Council Department of Recreation and Community Services. It looks like a small castle. In the middle of the Topscope was this stone cylinder with a map all around this area. It shows places that can be seen from here. Places that can be seen are in capital letters i.e. DUDLEY. Those that can't be seen in lower case such as Rugby.

From this end, there are as good views of the skyline than as from the area of Beacon Hill with the benches.

A little bit down the hill and a final look at the Toposcope.

Time to leave Beacon Hill. Heading towards Beacon Hill Car Park. Saw this City Council map of the Lickey Hills Country Park.

Beacon Hill Car Park is on Monument Lane in Lickey.

A large sandy car park, I wonder if the old tram network ever had a tram stop up here in the olden days?

I left via Monument Lane, walking down to Lickey. This lead to Rose Hill. A route that I would remember when I would come back 5 years later.

Walking from Monument Lane, up Rose Hill, then up Lickey Road, stopping at the bus stop back into Birmingham. The 98 used to go around here, but that route no longer exists (but did in early 2018). Usually takes me about half an hour to walk back to the City Limits from Beacon Hill.

January 2018

I returned in January 2018 to see the changes of the Birmingham Skyline from Beacon Hill. This time doing the walk down Lickey Road in Cofton Hackett, then along Rose Hill and up Monument Lane, getting onto Beacon Hill from the car park after a long hard walk.

This time heading up Monument Lane and going into Beacon Hill Car Park. Much easier than my 2013 route, but still a long walk there and back (I don't drive and I go on my own).

I saw this man being filmed on this camera. Not sure who they were, or what they were filming at the time.

A lot of bright sunlight to the back of Beacon Hill. The grass was a bit wet and soggy.

Tower blocks in Rubery. You can sit on the bench and watch, as the wind blows and relax.

View towards the Birmingham City Centre Skyline in the distance.

Rubery to the left and the City of Birmingham to the right.

With a better bridge camera, on this visit I was able to zoom right in to Birmingham City Centre. With the Queen Elizabeth Hospital on the left. Of course the BT Tower is still the tallest building in Birmingham. The Medical School was also visible next to the QEHB from here.

I got this view of the Beacon Hill Toposcope with the skyline of Birmingham City Centre. I don't think you can do this with real castles such as Dudley or Warwick (don't think you can see our skyline from those castles).

My other major Lickey Hills visit was from getting a train to Barnt Green and walking up the hill to the Visitor Centre in April 2017. I will cover that visit in a future post, so watch this space (that was long and hard walk up the hill that I ended up walking back to Barnt Green Station via Barnt Green Road). I initially saw that entrance in April 2015 when I first got a train to Barnt Green.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Now at 1,110 followers. Thank you.

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