Station Road

Station Road is not the first name for this road. Deeds of houses on Dudley Park Road refer to "...the Turnpike Road leading from Birmingham to Warwick and to a road leading from such Turnpike Road to Acocks Green Railway Station formerly called Purrott Road but then known as Station Road...". John Purrott is listed in directories as a farmer, a brickmaker, and a shoemaker with premises at 3 Union Street in 1861. He probably lived at Dudley Lodge, later 57 Station Road.

 

In addition, quite reasonably, some of the houses leading up to the railway station are listed at one point on Station Road, rather than Sherbourne Road, where they are now listed. So the decision has been made to look at the houses on Station Road as it is now. Unlike most of the roads in Acocks Green, there is a considerable amount of interest in respect of workshops, clubs, places of worship and various other businesses where Station Road is concerned. One place of worship that has been mentioned is a Primitive Methodist chapel, opened in 1892, which we have not been able to trace. The Westley Brook crosses Station Road, and has caused flooding and flood prevention work.  In 1888, at the time of the First Edition 25 inch map, there were only four houses at the northern end on the west side, one at the northern end on the east side, which is now seen as Sherbourne Road (the day nursery), and a small development at the south-west corner, possibly the builder Samuel Bridges, fronting onto the Warwick Road. However, Williams and Boddy may have already been in business here since 1884, with a Warwick Road postal address as there were no other properties at this end of the western side of the road.

 

Number one is Myrtle Cottage, occupied by Harriet Wilton, living on her own means, listed in the 1891 census. The house can be seen in the 1934 picture of the side of the cinema. Like everything up to the Christadelphian Hall, it has been demolished, in the 1970s when the Warwick Road shops to Dudley Park Road were replaced. The National Deposit Friendly Society was listed at number 1 in 1920 and 1925. Payne's shoe repairs appeared on the corner in the 1940s. The Acocks Green Garage and Transport Company was listed after number 1 from around 1930 to around 1960. By 1939 Precision Plastics was also behind number 1. Toolcraft Engineering was listed in this area in 1960. Universal Signs were there in 1970. Numbers 3 to 11 can be seen in the distance on the 1951 photo below. Number 5 was occupied by a Registrar of Births and Deaths from c. 1905 until c. 1930. Numbers 15 (The Yews, listed in a directory of 1884) and 17 (The Lilies) are associated with perhaps the most important builders of the Edwardian era in Acocks Green: Williams and Boddy, of which more below. They were listed at number 13 in directories. The Yews can be seen on the photo of Kate Boddy below. Williams and Boddy had a row of four cottages, Dudley Park Cottages, built for their workers at the back of number 13. They appeared during the 1890s. Next to number 17 stood the Acocks Green Club House/Liberal Club. This is shown on the two c. 1905 postcards below. As regards the Christadelphian Hall, sources from them say it was built in 1902. However the article below referring to its opening is from 1906.

 

Number 25 to 35 appear on the 1925 voters' list. The garage at numbers 37 to 41 was run from March 1924 by J.C. Ivens. Before that  it was Eaton and Ivens: the partnership was dissolved in March 1924. From around 1944 it was a Joseph Lucas repair depot, and from 1956 the Hobmoor Garage: there is a 1959 postcard below. After that are the four large houses: number 51, Riversdale; number 53, The Hurst; number 55, Cumberland House; and number 57, Dudley Lodge. All were eventually replaced and absorbed into the Carrs Lane Homes. Number 57 was offered to the Trust by Gertrude Teall in 1956: it took her name. It was replaced by flats in 1994. Number 55 was replaced by four blocks c. 1958, number 53 by one block in 1972, and number 51 by two blocks in the mid-1970s (history of the Carrs Lane Homes, no longer available on their website). In 2011 Yardley Great Trust took over the blocks, and they are now called Carrs Lane Gardens, although the address is still Teall Close. Riversdale was a girls' school in 1884, but that moved to Cumberland House around 1891. Number 53 was a school in 1936. The first listing we have found for number 57 is in the 1880 directory as Dudley Lodge. Riversdale (51), The Hurst (53), and Cumberland House (55) appear in a directory of 1884. Number 51 was an Air Training Corps site from 1945, and a sign can be seen on the 1951 photo below. They later moved to Olton.

Looking now at the even numbers (the eastern side), analysis is complicated by the amount and variety of commercial and workshop activity behind the frontages. The first building on this side, a restaurant in 2014, was formerly a C.A.B., and was attached to the butchers' premises as a slaughterhouse. A yard area beyond this contained an unidentified building (where a row of garages is in 2014) on the 1888 O.S. map. The occupant of number 2, George Johnson, chimney sweep in 1892, was listed as such on the Warwick Road in 1888, and this may refer in fact to this house. Numbers 4, 6 and 8, with identical gables, appear in an 1896 directory, and were occupied by a tobacconist, hairdresser and boot maker. A row of 6 cottages (Kingstone(e) Cottages) were built behind the Warwick Road shops and are on the 1901 census. They lasted until World War Two. Numbers 10 and 12 are on the 1904 O.S. map, but may be slightly earlier. They were occupied by a draper and a cab proprietor when new. The telephone exchange first appeared in the 1932 directory. Numbers 28 and 30 are on the 1904 O.S. map, and were a fruiterer and confectioner in 1921. Acocks Green Garage was listed between 30 and 32 in 1921. Number 32 started life as the Acocks Green Unionist Club and is mentioned in the 1901 census. By 1965 it was the British Legion (Lucas no. 2 branch). The houses from 36 to 54 are all in the 1898 directory. Numbers 52 and 54 are listed in 1896, with six others present in 1897. House names are as follows:

 

36 (Kings Ash), 38 (Southleigh), 40 (Woodthorpe), 42 (Earlsleigh/Earlsley), 44 (Edendene), 46 (Bladon/Elsdon), 48 (Banavie/Draycot), 50 (Eversholt), 52 (Hurley), and 54 (Netley).

 

Some of the interesting non-residential premises are worth mentioning. Number 6 had a laundry receiving officer in 1920. George Heath was a cycle repairer at the yard by the Warwick Road, replacing an old bakery from 1923. He was in business until 1962, becoming more occupied in the motor trade as time went on. Martin Bros., printers were behind 28 in 1925. The 1st Acocks Green Scouts were behind number 10 in 1930. In 1940 several manufacturers were operating from behind 28 and 30. Corfield builders were behind number 10 in 1950 and behind number 30 were also tool makers and a hair dryer manufacturer. By the 1954 O.S. map, non-residential activity had extended eastwards as far as the bowling green behind Oxford Road, replacing Kingston Cottages as well. Switchgear, industrial magnets and shelving manufacturers also appeared by 1960. Number 30 was a restaurant in 1965 and a cafe in 1970.

 

 

Extract from O.S. map, 1888
Extract from O.S. map, 1888
Station Road, c. 1905
Station Road, c. 1905
Station Road, c. 1905. The Lilies, number 17, is visible next to the Liberal Club on the left
Station Road, c. 1905. The Lilies, number 17, is visible next to the Liberal Club on the left
Station Road, 1934 (Birmingham Libraries)
Station Road, 1934 (Birmingham Libraries)
Station Road, 1951
Station Road, 1951
Station Road, 1959
Station Road, 1959
Station Road, c. 1905
Station Road, c. 1905
Station Road looking towards Oxford Road
Station Road looking towards Oxford Road
Station Road from the Oxford Road end, c. 1905
Station Road from the Oxford Road end, c. 1905
Advert for Williams and Boddy, 1930s
Advert for Williams and Boddy, 1930s
Kate Boddy outside The Yews
Kate Boddy outside The Yews
1906 article concerning the opening of the Christadelphian Hall (thanks to Peter White)
1906 article concerning the opening of the Christadelphian Hall (thanks to Peter White)