Graveyard Heritage Trail Wins Heritage Lottery Fund Support

Castle Bromwich Youth & Community Partnership has received £26,900 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for an exciting project to create a heritage trail which explores the stories behind the headstones in Castle Bromwich graveyard. Led by volunteers from the local community the project will focus on the lives of people buried in the graveyard to highlight the rich heritage that exists within the conservation area.

The project will allow local residents to discover how the area has changed and how these changes have impacted upon the lives of people living in Castle Bromwich. Young people will talk to older residents and record their oral histories to capture how various wars have affected the area, along with changes in health care, transport and communication.

The research will result in the installation of interpretation boards, as well as the production of an audio heritage trail, a photographic art project and information booklets.

Castle Bromwich Youth & Community Partnership is a volunteer organisation which promotes intergenerational working and the sharing of skills within the community. An integral part of the project will be the opportunity for local residents to gain skills through volunteering and learn more about their community and environment.

Commenting on the award, Terrie Knibb said, “We are thrilled to have received the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund and are confident that the project will give young people the opportunity to talk to older residents and capture their memories and knowledge for future generations whilst building their own skills to utlise in their careers.”


100 Years of Anti-Social Behaviour

We live in a decaying age. Young people no longer respect their parents. They are rude and impatient. They frequently inhabit taverns and have no self control.” Inscription, 6000 year-old Egyptian tomb.

It seems like hardly a day passes when the media doesn’t show images of anti-social behaviour coupled with rising demands for action to deal with the escalating menace, but a newspaper article we found today shows that such behaviour is nothing new for Castle Bromwich:

Whitstable Times and Herne Bay Herald – Saturday March 21st 1903

In the neighbourhood of Castle Bromwich there are some ruffians who are carrying out the old but dangerous trick of tying cord across the roadway with the object of upsetting wheelmen. Already a large number of cyclists, both male and female, have been thrown from their machines, but very fortunately, without sustaining serious injuries.

A vigilance committee has been formed by wheelmen in the neighbourhood, and every effort is being made to capture the perpetrators of the dastardly action, who run a great risk of having to answer the grave charge of manslaughter.

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Give and Gain Day Volunteers Create Bee Cafe

Give and Gain Day 005Thanks to the Give and Gain Day volunteers from Solihull Council and Park View, a garden area containing wildflowers has been created in the graveyard at Castle Bromwich. The 17 volunteers donated over  70 hours to help turn a waste area  into a garden which will develop into a peaceful area for reflection.

The volunteers battled against challenging conditions including hard clay and an abundant supply of stones before planting an array of native flowers which will attract wildlife and provide a colourful display throughout the year.

Give and Gain Day 065The volunteers from Solihull Council and Park View joined over 12,000 business volunteers; 300 companies; giving over 96,000 hours volunteering, worth over £1.5 million, helping hundreds of thousands of people across UK communities.

From This Day Forward

ida_countess_of_bradfordWhen we talk about the heritage of Castle Bromwich talk almost inevitably drifts to Castle Bromwich Hall and stories about Lady Ida. We’re currently researching into the history of the Hall as part of our Heritage Project and today we came across a news paper article describing the marriage of Lady Ida Lumley to Viscount Newport.

SHEFFIELD DAILY TELEGRAPH – Wednesday September 8th 1869

Marriage of Lord Newport M.P., and Lady Ida Lumley, at Maltby.

A wedding of an unusually interesting character took place at Maltby Church yesterday, attracting to the sacred building and its precincts a large number of spectators, including all the principal families in the neighbourhood.

This marked manifestation of public interest is not to be wondered at when the exalted station of the two individuals mainly concerned in the day’s proceedings is taken into account, for the bridegroom was Lord Newport (George Cecil Orlando Bridgeman), M.P. for South Shropshire, and the eldest son of the Earl of Bradford; and the bride, Lady Ida Francis Annabella Lumley, second daughter of the Earl of Scarborough.

The inhabitants of Maltby were early astir making the necessary preparations for giving a hearty reception to the bridal party; and long before the ceremony came off several triumphal arches of evergreens and flowers had been erected, one being placed at the entrance of the village by Mr. J. Thompson and three others nearer the church, two by Mr. W. H. Crossley, and one by Mr. Ellis. Each arch was surmounted by an appropriate motto expressing both in the classical languages and in English the well wishes of the inhabitants for the future prosperity of the happy couple.

The interior of the church, too, was decorated in honour of the occasion. Mr. Crossley having placed over the altar, in illuminated characters, the text, “They shall be mine, saith the Lord of Hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels,” while the baptismal font was tastefully decorated by Miss Rolleston.

There was also signs of rejoicing near the entrance to Sandbeck Park. In addition to a pleasing festoon of evergreens, with an inscription on each side, extended across the highway at a short distance from the lodge, a splendid arch had been erected over the entrance gates, bearing the mottoes, “May God Bless Them,” and “Long Life and Happiness,” surmounted by the monogram of the newly married pair and the arms of the house of Lumley, skilfully worked in gold and silver.

Thus both on leaving Sandbeck and arriving, after a pleasant drive of three or four miles at Maltby village, the bride and bridegroom would witness gay demonstrations of goodwill. These artistic displays were not, however, the only contributions to the enjoyment of the wedding party; for, as the weather was delightfully fine, the natural beauties of the local landscape scenery, both in Sandbeck Park with its choice herds of deer, and the village of Maltby with its picturesque surroundings, were seen to the best advantage.

The company at the hall was very numerous, and included many members of the nobility; the following being a list of some of the principal guests:

The Earl and Countess of Bradford, parents of the bridegroom; Lady Elizabeth Drummond, Mrs. Baillie Cochrane and Miss Cochrane, Lady Mary Clive and Miss Clive, Lord and Lady Foley, the Lord Primate of Ireland and Mrs. Berresford, Lady Georgina Milner and Miss. Milner, Lord Claude Hamilton, M.P.; the Right Hon. J. Bridgeman, the Hon. F. Bridgeman, the Hon. E. Bridgeman, the Hon. Gerald Bridgeman, Mr. Victor Drummond, Mr. Cecil Drummond, the Hon. W. Orde Powlett, Sir William Milner, Lord and Lady Muncaster, Mr. Henry Milner, Mrs. Milner and Miss Milner; Mr. and Mrs. Bridgeman Simpson, Retford; Mr. G. S. Foljambe, Mr. and Mrs. Wrightson, Doncaster; Mr. and Mrs. Melhuish, &c., &c.

Short before half-past eleven the wedding party arrived at the church, which as we have above intimated, was well filled by an influential congregation, among whom was Mr. Miles and party, from Firbeck Hall; Mr. and Mrs. Ramsden and party, from Carlton Hall; Mr. Hoyle, Mr. Whitfield, and other gentlemen from around Rotherham. The ceremony was preceded by the Keble’s wedding hymn, which was sung in a very credible manner by the church choir.

All eyes were of course directed to the bride who was attired in a white satin dress, trimmed with Brussels lace and orange blossom, and a Brussels lace veil glittering with diamonds and pearls. She was attended by six bridesmaids viz.: Lady Lillian Selina Elizabeth Lumley and Lady Sibell Mary Lumley, sisters of the bride; Lady Mabel Selina Bridgeman and Lady Florence Catherine Bridgeman, sisters of the Bridegroom; Miss Amy Cochrane and Miss L’Estrange, cousins to the bride. They each wore a dress of white Indian muslin trimmed with green satin and Valenciennes lace; a pannier trimmed with satin bows and sashes; a wreath of wild roses and white heather; a tulle veil; and a beautiful locket composed of a crystal heart, with the monogram of the bride and bridegroom in the centre, surrounded by a coronet of pearls.

The bridegroom had for his “best man” Lord Claude Hamilton, who went through his task in a remarkably graceful and efficient manner; the second groomsman being Sir Walter Milner. Nothing could have been more commendable than the demeanour of the congregation throughout the ceremony, which was performed by the Lord Archbishop of Armagh, Primate of All Ireland, great-uncle to the bride; assisted by the Hon. and Rev. G. T. O. Bridgeman, rector of Wigan, and hon. chaplain to Her Majesty, uncle of the bridegroom; the Rev. C. H. Wright, vicar of Maltby; and the Rev. R. B. Spoor, domestic chaplain to the Earl of Scarborough.

The bride was given away by her father, the marriage service concluding with the “Wedding March” played effectively on the organ by Miss. Rolleston. As the bridal party left the church the quaint music of the three village bells was almost drowned by the cheers of the spectators, and a greeting of similar character met them at Sandbeck Hall, in front of which a large number of servants and villagers had assembled.


The wedding breakfast which was subsequently partaken of was of a truly magnificent character. Massive pieces of gold and silver plate bore viands prepared with marvellous skill by Mons. Le Fert. Among the dishes were trophies of confectionery representing hunting scenes, and others of an emblematic character, each being a masterpiece of Mons. Le Fert’s peculiar art. The number and value of the the presents which have been bestowed upon the bride are even more astonishing, for their total worth is estimated at between £20,000 and £30,000. They include a beautiful necklace of diamond stars, given by the Earl of Bradford; a splendid diamond and pearl locket, by the Countess of Bradford; a lace and mother of pearl fan, by the Princess Mary of Teck; a magnificent tiara of turquoise pearls and diamonds, by the Earl of Scraborough; and an exquisite necklace of emeralds and pearls, by the Countess of Scarborough.

In the course of the afternoon the newly married pair left Sandbeck Hall for Masbro; en route for Castle Bromwich, one of the residences of the Earl of (Scraborough) where they will spend the honeymoon. They were loudly cheered upon their departure, and had to pass through a perfect shower of those supposed omens of prosperity, old slippers. The day’s festivities concluded with a grand ball, to which a large number of the tenantry were invited. Extra carriages were provided for the wedding by Mr. Brown, of the Prince of Wales Hotel. Masbro.


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Castle Bromwich Felons Beware

We have an interesting newspaper advertisement from 1834 to share with you today which we came across whilst researching into the life of the Rev. Edwin Kempson.

BIRMINGHAM GAZETTE – Monday January 6th 1834

Notice is hereby given, that the several persons whose names are hereunder mentioned, having formed themselves into an Association called the CASTLE BROMWICH ASSOCIATION for the PROSECUTION of FELONS, will give the following gratuities or rewards (to be paid on conviction) to any person or persons who shall detect or apprehend any offender guilty of the after-mentioned offences upon their respective persons or property, viz –

£. s. d.
For every burglary, house-breaking, highway robbery, or stealing horses, cows, sheep, pigs, or other cattle, or setting fire to ricks or buildings 10 10 0
For maliciously maiming horses, mares, geldings, neat cattle, sheep, lambs or pigs 5 5 0
For receiving goods or other things, knowing them to be stolen 5 5 0
For stealing lead, corn, grain, poultry, timber, clothes, linen, money, goods or furniture 2 2 0
For stealing implements of husbandry, harrow-teeth, plough-irons, hooks or thimbles from gates or other iron-work, old iron, hay or straw, or robbing orchards or gardens, or milking cows 1 1 0
For stealing, destroying, or injuring trees, gates, hedges, posts, rails, or stiles 1 1 0
For stealing, destroying, or injuring turnips, peas, potatoes, carrots or any other produce in or from any field 1 1 0


And for every offence not before enumerated such rewards as shall at the annual meeting of members of the Association be deemed necessary according to the nature of the crime.

The Right Hon. the Earl of Bradford

Rev. Edwin Kempson

John Darlaston Blakesley

John Smallwood

John Chattock

Joseph Spencer Ward

Zachariah Twamley, jun.

John Blakesley

Richard Gibson

William Webb

John Powell

Christopher Chattock


Harvey Smith

Thomas Dowler

Edward Dalton Bosworth

Samuel Godwin

Jane Knight

Mary Wilton

Ann Dodwell

Mary Alldritt

John Mitchell

John Cooper

John Nicholls

William Ludlow