Author Topic: Balsall Heath as it was.  (Read 270747 times)

john2000

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 11048
Balsall Heath as it was.
« on: January 18, 2006, 10:51:42 PM »
who remembers Balsall Heath, before they leveled it to the ground ??
Growing old is mandatory..........Growing up is optional

maltablue

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6330
Re: Balsall Heath as it was.
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2006, 08:24:42 AM »
Morning John. could you pleas let me have your email address as i have mislaid it. Thanks Phil  (Malta)
Born and Bred in Sparkbrook.

Graham

  • Guest
Re: Balsall Heath as it was.
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2006, 10:37:07 PM »
Hi John, I'm on here too now, under my name, Graham.
I lived in Leamington Rd., Sparkbrook, till 1966. I was always sure that we actually lived in Basall Heath but that the people were ashamed of that fact so they called it Sparkbrook. It was only after I had moved to Belgium that I found out that Leamington Rd. was indeed Sparkbrook!
Leamington Rd. has been pulled down and a school has been built there, Nelson Mandela School. Only a tiny bit of our road still exists, on the Ladypool Rd. end. I was back there some years ago to take a look round, can't imagine now that I survived my youth there. I have tried to contact the school by eMail but never had any replies. Don't ask me why I find this very typical of Brummies, don't get me wrong i'm proud to be a Brummie, but most of them never reply to letters or mails.
I can't say that I have happy memories of my youth. My mom was left a war widow with 5 kids to feed, she herself was made fatherless in the Great War! I moved abroad to make a life as a prof cyclist, but I think that I would have emigrated anyway just to get away from Brum and all those bad memories of those sad days. Even now walking the streets of Brum makes me very sad as the memories of my youth all come back to me.
I have built a new life in Belgium with a beautiful loving family which has helped me to erase all those bad memories.
I am sorry if it makes you sad that they have pulled so much down. For me they are erasing bad memories, we were young and had our youth but that was all we had, I'm so much better off now even though I'm in my 60's and have a failing heart.

Graham

  • Guest
Re: Balsall Heath as it was.
« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2006, 12:49:32 AM »
Hi Phil,
When & where did you live in Sparkbrook?

maltablue

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6330
Re: Balsall Heath as it was.
« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2006, 10:41:55 AM »
Morning Graham.
                            87 Larches St, just off ladypool Rd. the Stratford Rd. end.
 Born there 1948 lived there till 1960, then moved to Kings Heath. and then other places, till finally ending up in Malta, where i now live.
Born and Bred in Sparkbrook.

Graham

  • Guest
Re: Balsall Heath as it was.
« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2006, 11:49:26 AM »
Hi Phil,
Yes I remember Larches St. my sister worked at Woolworths not far from where you lived. I lived in Leamington Rd. untill 1966 then I got married and moved to 50 Watery Lane, Smethwick.
My step-brother-in-law had a shop on Ladypool Rd., between Leamington & Brunswick Rd., selling all sorts of hold-alls for fishing tackle ect. My aunt Liz used to run them up for him in her front room at 58 Leamington Rd.
I attended Clifton RD. junior & Dennis Rd. sec. mod. schools. These must have ranked as some of the worst schools in Europe at that time. I tried everything to get into a better school but my mother would not have it! Talk about happy days  ??? Graham.

maltablue

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6330
Re: Balsall Heath as it was.
« Reply #6 on: January 22, 2006, 10:36:58 AM »
morning Graham,
                           do not remember the fishing tackle shop, but remember Woolworths next door to Peacocks as i recall. Had some friends, the Whites, Alan and Donald, they lived in Larches street, i think they attende Dennis Rd. Do you remem ber the cycle shop, in Silver St, Kings Heath, Claud Butler i thinkjavascript:replaceText(' :-\\', document.postmodify.message);
Undecided. Was he an ex pro cyclist to?. My first decent bike was a Dawes 5 speed bought from Mcallies (think thats how you spelt it) on the Coventry Rd. Small Heath.
Born and Bred in Sparkbrook.

Graham

  • Guest
Re: Balsall Heath as it was.
« Reply #7 on: January 22, 2006, 11:40:23 AM »
Good morning Phil,
The shop on Ladypool Rd. didn't sell fishing takle, only hold-alls of every kind. The cycle shop at Silver St. was, I believe, in Kings Heath. The owner was a good friend of mine, Tommy Godwin, he won a bronze medal at the Oylimpics some time in the 50's, 52 or 56. He was the first, paid, national cycling coach in Britain, is still alive and lives at Knowle. He made out the lap schedule for my, succesful, atempt at beating the 10 mile, 25 mile & 1 hour records in 1966 at Salford Park. This track got swallowed up by the "spaghetti junction" and no longer exists.
My first new cycle was a Hercules Harlequin, bought at Roger's cycle shop in Stoney Lane. From a very early age, I think 12 or 13, each Sunday I would cycle down to Gloscester and back without stopping! Just because it was a magical 100 miles there and back, no other reason! Had to cross the Malvern Hills on the way, British camp, but would rather die than get off and walk.
Graham.

tassie devil

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 12
Re: Balsall Heath as it was.
« Reply #8 on: January 26, 2006, 12:50:42 PM »
hi to you all yes i remember the school choirs at the town hall we all reckoned we were great on that stage ha ha
 i also remember cycling with mates to barmouth in wales just to see the sea and buying a loave of bread and some jam as that was all we could afford  and standing in the middle of the st all of us eating our bread and jam sleeping on the side of road great fun on way back we would raid the farmers fields for carrots potatoes and apples if we got caught most times the farmers would take no notice.does any one remember cheapside the meat markets the pigs and sheep etc running down the sts with the slaughtermen trying to catch them it was a laugh just like the keystone cops i use to go down most saturdays it had the best [censored],peas and potato cafe in brum,  i had lots of relatives in highate rd larches st and larches passage spent many a time playing in the passage there was a factory there and it had a
barn with bales of hay and we would play hid and seek for hours do you remember the morgans or hudsons and the secondhand shop by the bridge before moseley rd and the talbot pub crn,highgate and larches st i remember every sunday taking a jug to the outdoor for the barman to fill it of mild for my uncle fred, iwonder if anyone remembers the old bomb shelters in angelina st having dares jumping from one to the other if freddy cummins reads this do you remember last time i seen you, you were a motorcycle cop out side digbeth midland red station in 1966 before coming to aus  ::)

john2000

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 11048
Re: Balsall Heath as it was.
« Reply #9 on: January 27, 2006, 08:12:10 AM »
Hi again, I'm back online, ( forget to pay my bill ) :-[ anyway, talking about bikers who remembers a club in Digbeth, called the double zeros. ?? ring any bells. ?? the guy who ran it was called Dave Collier, well hes some big noise now in the church,
I remember we used to meet at a snack bar ( moble type ) in the centre of brum  by the smallbrook ringway, across from the hotel,  used to race up and down the ring way, but later we put our riding skills to a good us, we would transport blood to and from hospitals ( and that was the only time we move in and out of the traffic with out the police pulling us over. ) the last I saw the corner where we would meet now has a great big office building on it. who remembers the little book shop in gooch st, in the bend near belgrave rd, the owner was called fred, I think he must have been about a 100 years old, every week I would get my pocket money and go and buy  a Rupert the bear book/comic,  then walk back to balsall heath road, and just passed the luxor cinima was a depot where they stored vimto drinks, sit on the wall read my comic and drink my vimto, ( I was eight years old ) .
what happend to all the people who lived in Sherbore rd/Balsall heath rd/river st, maybe they where all put into high rise flats some here, ?? ???
Growing old is mandatory..........Growing up is optional

Lizzy

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 17
Re: Balsall Heath as it was.
« Reply #10 on: January 29, 2006, 12:40:22 PM »
Hi John I remember the book shop in gooch st old fred could be a cranky old thing when he wanted to be.
Did you ever go to the rag markets and watch Mr Lees sell his crockery???he really could make those plates rattle.
I have lived in Aussie for the past 44 years but still keep up with all thats going on in Brum.I lived in Highgate Street
for 17 years which I always thought was Balsall Heath but now find out it was Highgate.My husband of 55 years lived in Kyrwicks Lane Sparkbrooke which is now Balsall Heath
They sure have got us confused.
All The Best  Lizzy