Birmingham pub history index
Directory of Pubs in the UK, historical public houses, Taverns, Inns, Beer Houses and Hotels in Birmingham, Warwickshire. The Birmingham, Warwickshire listing uses information from census, Trade Directories and History to add licensees, bar staff, Lodgers and Visitors.
This Gazetteer of street names was started by Clinton Davies. It was continued by Bill Dargue initially using information from Vivian Bird 1970 Portrait of Birmingham, Vivian Bird 1991 Streetwise, Joseph McKenna 1986 Birmingham Street Names, and anything by John Morris Jones. From a Birmingham online forum
A - Streetnames
A-B = Aston-Birmingham; this 19th-century street stood on the boundary between the boroughs of Aston Manor and Birmingham as they were prior to the Greater Birmingham Act of 1911 when Aston amalgamated with Birmingham.
Adderley Road B8
The name Adderley derives from local 17th-century landowners whose family name may be originally taken from a placename (or vice versa): possibly Anglo-Saxon Aldred's leage = clearing. A public park, Adderley Park was offered to Birmingham town council 1855 by Charles Bowyer Adderley, Lord Norton, but ignored. Norton opened it himself 1855, it was named Adderley Park 1862 and only in 1865 did the council take it over on a 999-year lease for 5 shillings a year. Edmund Road, Ralph Road, Reginald Road are taken from Adderley family forenames. Arden Road is named after the wife of Sir Charles Adderley, equerry to Charles I, who married Anne Arden of Park Hall 1636. A later Charles Adderley married Mary Bowyer 1703 hence Bowyer Road. Hartopp Road is named after Anna Maria Bowyer who married Charles Clement Adderley 1803 and was to be the mother of Lord Norton. Lord Norton married Julia Leigh 1842 hence Leigh Road. Hams Road is named after Hams Hall, a country house built near Lea Marston by the Adderleys 1780. The building was dismantled after World War 1 by shipping magnate Oswald Harrison and re-erected at Coates near Cirencester where as Bledisloe Lodge, it serves as a student residence of the Royal Agricultural College.
All Saints Street B18
All Saints Church was consecrated 1833; it was a Rickman & Hutchinson gothic-style church. Originally there were galleries on three sides which were later removed; small spires stood at each corner of the building; these were also later removed. The shallow chancel was added 1881. The church was demolished after 1966.
Albany Road B17
Queen Victoria's 4th son, Leopold was Duke of Albany & Clarence; Clarence Road and Regent Road are nearby.
Albert Road B6 B14 B17 B21 B23 B33
Many roads are named after Queen Victoria's husband, Prince Albert 1819-1901; they married 1840 and Albert was made Prince Consort 1857.
Albert Road Stechford B33 was originally a boundary road around the medieval Stichford Field.
Albert Street B5
Birmingham Station in Curzon Street was built 1838 inconveniently away from the town centre. The planned road into town, Albert Street, named after Queen Victoria’s prince consort was so slow in the building that New Street Station was built first 1852 thus rendering the road unnecessary.
Alcester Street Alcester Road B13/ B14 B47/ B48/ B98
The Alcester Turnpike to Spernal Ash 1767 was created as a through route where none had previously existed giving access from the countryside to the market of the booming town of Birmingham. As with all the former-turnpikes it tends still to be known as 'the' Alcester Road.
Alexandra Road B5
This building development in the north-eastern corner of Edgbaston took its name from the Danish Princess Alexandra 1844-1925) who married the Prince of Wales, later King Edward VII in 1863; also Princess Road.
Alma Street B19
Commemorates a Franco-British victory 1854 on the River Alma in the Crimean War against Russia; similarly Inkerman Street after the Battle of Inkerman 1854.
Alwold Road B29
The large-scale municipal estate centred on Castle Square was laid out between World Wars 1 and 2. This street was named after the Anglo-Saxon lord of Northfield manor whose hall was Weoley Castle..
Armoury Road B11
Sixteen separate gun firms amalgamated 1862 as the Birmingham Small Arms Company, the BSA, with a large mechanised steam-powered factory at Armoury Road The BSA soon diversified into cycle and motor cycle production. The factory closed 1980 and was demolished after 1983.
Anderton Park Road B13
The Anderton family were important in the area during the 19th century: Rebecca Anderton had St Annes Church Moseley built 1874.
Ashleigh Grove B13
This is a 20th-century development on the site of Ashleigh Grange which was probably a 15th-century hall timbered in pad-and-panel style; it was demolished c1930.
Ashted Circus Ashted Row Ashted Walk B7
The district of Ashted, a late 18th-century development, was named after Dr John Ash founder of the General Hospital whose estate this was until 1788. His house later became the church of St James the Less 1791. The main road through the estate, Ashted Row, running parallel to and north of Great Brook Street, almost disappeared in the redevelopments of the 1960s, though a tiny stretch remains off Nechells Parkway south-west of Ashted Circus. Great Lister Street was named after Sir Lister Holte of Aston Hall who originally leased the land to Dr Ash; Great Brook Street is named after attorney John Brook who bought the lease from Ash; after the latter went bankrupt and the estate was sold and developed for good quality housing.
Aston Brook Street B6
Aston Brook, also known as Hockley Brook and, nearer its source as The Bourn or River Bourn, runs from Hockley east-west to join the Rea and Tame; it was culverted from the 19th century and is only visible in one or two places including its confluence near Spaghetti Junction. Aston Brook Mill was a fulling mill from at least 1532 until the late 18th century when it became a corn mill operating until c1914. The millpool was in the Pool Street/ Phillips Street area.
Aston Church Road B7/ B8
The route across the River Rea from the Saltley side to the parish church of Aston, Ss Peter & Paul. This was a churchway which had to be maintained by local parishioners. The ford across the River Rea was never an easy one. Also Church Lane B6.
Aston Expressway B6
The A38M Aston Expressway built 1972, the only British motorway to go right into a city centre. Spaghetti Junction is the nickname given shortly after its construction to Junction 6 of the M6 where the A38M joins it, at the time of construction the most complicated multi-level junction in the world.
Aston Hall Road B6
Aston Hall was built for Sir Thomas Holte probably replacing a moated medieval manor house nearer the river. Building started 1618, Holte moved in 1631 but the house was not completed until 1635. The road was renamed from Aston Lane c1930. Lister Street B7 is named after the last but one of the Holte baronets, also remembered in Holt Street, originally Holte Street. Heneage Legge inherited the Holte estates and is remembered in Heaneage Street B7 and Legge Street B4. Bagot Street B4 commemorates another Holte heir.
Aston Street B4
The road from Birmingham Steelhouse Lane via Gosta Green to Aston was developed with housing in the mid-18th century.
B - Streetnames
Baker Street B10
Following Joseph Chamberlain’s election as an MP he was replaced as mayor by George Baker 1875, 1876.
ins Lane B28
Known from 1540 and named after the moated site known as yn east of Kedleston Road, now built over.
Balsall Heath Road B12
A street named from the placename, Balsall Heath Road was built from the Moseley Road to the Pershore Road 1829 as a speculative building investment with large plots of land laid out for Birmingham’s upper middle class.
Barn Lane B13
Named after an 19th-century barn built in Italianate style by one of the ladies of the Taylor family.
Barrows Lane B25
was recorded as Bate Lane 1575, possibly a family name. A field name east of the lane Bayt fields is recorded 1495.
Bartholomew Row Bartholomew Street B5
With Chapel Street, named after St Bartholomew's Church which stood between Masshouse Lane and Bartholomew Row. Building costs were subsidised by the Jennens family (See below: Jennens Road.) who were laying out their estate for sale as housing plots; a church increased the attraction to prospective residents. The church was closed 1937 and demolished by 1943.
Bath Passage B5 Bath Row B15
Bath Row and Bath Passage led to baths at the Lady Well. This was originally a natural spring used by water carriers to supply the town and became the site of Birmingham’s first swimming baths from c1720. The site of the baths is now beneath the Arcadian Centre.
Bath Street B4
A street laid out c1760 where a spring ran to the Great Pool of the Colmore estate. Shadwell Street dates from about the same time; ‘shadwell’ signifies a shallow stream.
Bath Walk B12
The first Balsall Heath Baths off George Street/ Edward Road was operating by 1851 using fresh spring water; it had an 30m open-air pool as well as private baths and. This was a high-class establishment, but by 1878 the baths had been condemned and filled in by order of the local health board, wells and springs polluted by nearby cesspits being an increasing problem.
Beak Street B1
Hinckley Street derives from Hinckley Field on this site in the Middle Ages; Hinckley in turn derives from Hink’s leage ie clearing. The Hinckley family were so-named by 1300. In the 19th century this became one of Birmingham’s worst slum areas and was known as The Inkleys. Later the Hinckley family home was The Beake at B17 Harborne/ Bearwood Willow Avenue/ Hickory Drive after which Beak Street is named. Beaks Farm/ The Beaks dates from after the enclosure of Rotton Park; it disappeared towards the end of the 19th century. Also B67 Beakes Road. A beak may have been a geographical feature, the particular shape of a hill, or possibly a family name.
Bell Lane B33
The Bell Inn is well over a hundred years old and has given its name to the lane which leads to Marston Green from Mackadown, the original settlement of Sheldon, and from Sheldon Hall known as East Hall (in contrast to Sheldon’s West Hall at Kents Moat). The bridge over Hatchford Brook is marked on the First Edition OS map as East Hall Bridge, presumably the responsibility of the lord of the manor.
Bell Lane/ Bell Hill/ Bell Holloway B31
Predating the 1727 Bromsgrove Turnpike, the Bell & Bluebell at Bell Lane/ Bell Holloway was a coaching inn until a new Bell Inn was built on the Bristol Road 1803. This was rebuilt in the second half of the 20th century. There may be a connection with the de Belne family - see Bells Lane B14 below.
Bells Lane B14
The earliest reference to the de Belne family is found in the grant of the manor of Blackgrave to William de Belne by King Henry III. Bells Lane took its name from the family and the 16th-century timber-framed Bells Farm took its name from the lane.
Bennetts Hill B2
The street was laid out c1800 and named after the Hill so-called from the family who previously farmed the land. Edward Burne-Jones was born on the site of the buildings now numbered Nos.11-12.
Berwood Lane B24
Berwood was the name of the manor now covered by Castle Vale. It derives from Anglo-Saxon baer wudu = pigs’ pasture wood; the housing development on Castle Bromwich aerodrome was named Castle Vale with reference to Castle Bromwich in the late 1960s by a schoolgirl in a competition.
Billesley Lane B13
Renamed by association with its apparent destination ie. Billesley Common to the south, but originally this was Bulley Lane 1495 (including Belle Walk) named after the medieval settlement, now the site of Moseley golf club house, of Bulley = bull clearing. Bullan Wyllan ie. Bull’s Spring is mentioned at Billesley Lane/ Blenheim Road in the Yardley Charter of 972 AD.
Biggin Croft B35
Castle Vale was formerly the site of Castle Bromwich aerodrome developed as a housing estate in the late 1960s. Many roads are named after RAF bases: Biggin Hill is an RAF base, also Padgate Close, Tangmere Croft, Upavon Close. Dyce Croft is named after Aberdeen airport, Renfrew Croft after Glasgow airport, Stornaway Road after the Isle of Lewis airport, Sumburgh Croft after the airport of Shetland, Turnhouse Croft after Edinburgh airport. The original tower blocks bore the names of aircraft.
Birchall Street B5/ B12
Derives from Birch Hole Street, probably a medieval topographical name = birch(tree) + hole/ holm deriving from Anglo-Saxon holm = flood meadow.
Blake Lane B9
Probably derived from a medieval name meaning bleak; presumably after deforestation this heathy area degenerated to open scrubland.
Birchfield Road B20
Derived from birch trees or possibly a family name, the hamlet’s name was spelled Birchsfields until c1850. At the end of the 19th century Birchfield House stood at B20 Birchfield Road/ Trinity Road north-east corner. In 1831 Birchfield Road became part of New Walsall Road turnpike, the modern Walsall Road, being more direct than the Old Walsall Road turnpike of 1727. The new road not a highway as such but made into one a using a combination of local lanes.
Blake Street B74
Mentioned as the Street though not so-named in the Charter of (Little) Aston and (Great) Barr in which King ?Eadred granted land to one of his ministers, Wulfhelm 957 AD. The Anglo-Saxon implication of street is that this was a Roman road. Blake Street is so-named by 1290 and may derive from Blaca, a personal name, or from black, the implication of this being that the lands had already been cultivated when the new owners came to farm them: Anglo-Saxon or medieval farmers reusing Roman fields?
Blakesley Road B25
Blakeley Lone is recorded 1427, named either after the area or after Blakesley Hall which itself was named after the area. Blakleistoles is recorded in 1316 and appears to mean bleak clearing of withy pollards; these were willows cut regularly at c2m in height to provide long slender branches for fencing or basket-making.
Bleak Hill Road B23
Derives from the self-explanatory topographical name, Bleak Hills. The land here is a mixture of sand and pebbles (Bunter sandstone and Bunter pebble beds) formerly heathland.
Blucher Street B1
Dating from c1823 this street commemorates the Prussian Marshal Gebhard von Blucher whose troops fought alongside Wellington in the defeat of Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo 1815. Nearby Marshall Street was also named after Blucher.
Boldmere Road B73
This late 19th-century streetname derives from a lake between B23 Chester Road and Court Lane north end and known variously as Bowen Pool, Baldmoor, Baldmoor Lake, Bolemore Lake. Moor means boggy land. The area took its name from the road name.
Bond Drive B35
While most street names on Castle Vale derive from aviation (this was an aerodrome until after World War 2), some commemorate members of the City Council during the 1970s when the estate was being built: Bond Drive from Alderman Ernest Bond chairman of the Housing Committee, Thomas Walk after Alderman Dennis Thomas chairman of the Public Works Committee, Watton Green named after the leader of the council, Alderman Harry Watton.
Booths Lane B42
Booths Farm was a c1700 farmhouse incorporating timber-framing from an earlier building. The farm was the centre of William Booth’s forgery industry in the early 19th century; Booth was hanged for his crimes at Stafford Jail 1812. By 1974 the house was in ruins and demolished.
Bordesley Green B9
A medieval name, la Grene de Bordeslei, Bordesley’s demesne pasture ie. belonging to the lord of the manor. The road was extended as Bordesley Green East across the River Cole to enable trams to reach Stuarts Road 1928. It was further extended to Station Road and the Meadway built in the early 1960s to Tile Cross and via Bacons End on to Coleshill.
Bordesley Middleway B10
Part of the Middle Ring Road opened c1990, formerly had the ancient topographical name Sandy Lane.
Bordesley Park Road B10
A 19th-century street name after Bordesley Hall which was built c1750 by wealthy button magnate John Taylor I with c15ha of parkland. The hall was burned down in the 1791 Birmingham Riots, rebuilt but demolished 1840 when the estate was sold for housing development.
Bournville Lane B30
Bournville was originally part of Bournbrook but renamed in fashionable French style by Cadbury Brothers when they moved their factory 1879 to a greenfield site off Bournville Lane/ Linden Road. Bournville Village was developed from 1900 as a garden suburb initially for Cadbury employees by George Cadbury and centred on the village green Sycamore Road/ Linden Road. The names of these roads may take their inspiration from Camp Wood/ Stock Wood in Acacia Road/ Maple Road. Also part of the original village are Elm Road, Laburnum Road and Willow Road. Ironically Bournville Lane was known until at least 1878 as Oak Lane.
Bow Street B1
C1760, Probably borrowed from the London name.
Bowcroft Grove B24
The Earl of Warwick, lord of Sutton manor provided a stone cottage, Bow Bearers Lodge for two retainers to escort travellers across Sutton Chase which was then a desolate and dangerous area renowned for robbers. The lodge survived until it was demolished 1828; Bowcroft Grove is a modern road on the site of a field called Bow Bearers Croft.
Bracebridge Road B74
Bracebridge Pool was made before 1419 specifically for bream and leased by Richard Earl of Warwick to Sir Ralph Bracebridge of Kingsbury as part of Sutton manor.
Bradford Road B36
Built in the 1930s with Newport Road to bypass Mill Hill on the Old Chester Road at Castle Bromwich, it is named after the Bridgeman family, Earls of Bradford who bought the manor 1657. The title of Newport is that of the Bradford heir.
Bradford Street B5/ B12
Named c1760 after speculator Henry Bradford who offered plots here free of charge in order to encourage development on his estate. Nonetheless development was very slow. The street provided a new bridge over the River Rea in addition to the old crossing at Digbeth.
Brandwood Road B14
Takes its names from a hamlet at the south end of B14 Brandwood Road near the junction with Broad Lane. The name derives from Anglo-Saxon brende wudu = burnt wood, woodland cleared for farming. This is an old road from Kings Heath to Kings Norton running on higher ground between the valleys of the River Rea and the River Cole/ Chinn Brook from Grove Road, via Monyhull Hall Road and Parsons Hill. Also Brandwood Park Road. Brandwood Grove is a 20th-century development named after Brandwood House, first recorded 1638 but likely to be of older foundation. The house is now a Territorial Army barracks.
Brasshouse Passage B1
The Brasshouse was built 1781 by the Birmingham Metal Company alongside the Birmingham Canal. The office building is now public house.
Brays Road B26
Dr Thomas Bray, rector of Sheldon 1696 founded both the Society for the Propagation of Christian Knowledge SPCK and the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel; he was also instrumental in establishing the episcopalian church in Maryland USA.
Bridge Road B8
A bridge over the 1838 London & Birmingham Railway across the Pretoria Road c1900.
Bridge Street B1
The Birmingham Canal reached what later became Gas Street Basin by 1771 and this road was built over it probably by 1778.
Named 1999 after canal engineer James Brindley 1716-1772 by the property company who developed the project to revitalise this dilapidated area alongside the Birmingham Canal near the city centre.
Bristol Road B15/ B29/ B31
In 1727 the Bromsgrove Turnpike was set up from Birmingham went via B5 Smallbrook (Street) Queensway, B1 Holloway Head, B15 Wheeleys Lane, Wheeleys Road, Arthur Road, Church Road, Priory Road, then via a lost road skirting Edgbaston Park, across Lower Pool dam to cross Bourn Brook at the bridge on B15/ B29 Bristol Road near Bournbrook Road. The route is then B29/ B31 Bristol Road, and over Lickey following the Roman road. In the 1770s a straighter route was made from Smallbrook Queensway via the Horsefair, Bristol Street, and then Bristol Road to join the old road before Bournbrook Bridge.
Bristol Street B15
In the 18th century this was Bath Road, ie. the road to Bath.
Broad Street B1
This was a field track until the development on St Martin’s glebe land of the high-class Islington estate around Islington Row, Bishopsgate Street, Tennant Street and William Street from c1790. The estate was given a London name to add to its prestige. At this time the street was widened from the town to the Birmingham Canal as Broad Street and as a planned development was much the widest in the town. Before the turn of the century the street was widened as far as Five Ways Edgbaston and known as Islington from the 1780s to the mid-19th century.
Bromford Drive B36
Bromford Drive and estate were built after 1965 on the site of Birmingham or Bromford (Bridge) Racecourse which had opened 1895. Some streets are named after famous racehorses: Hyperion Road after the 1933 Derby winner, Papyrus Way the 1923 Derby winner, Reynoldstown Road after the 1935 Grand National winner, Tipperary Close after Tipperary Tim the 100-to-1 1928 Grand National winner; Trigo Croft and Ayala Croft are also named after horses. Other roads are named after racecourses: e.g. Newmarket Way, Redcar Croft.
Bromford Lane B8
A very old road name, Bromford derives from Anglo-Saxon brom ford = broom (ie. the shrub) ford; the ford across the River Tame was where Bromford Lane crosses the river just north of the junction with Bromford Road.
Brompton Pool Road B28
Colebrook Priory Mill/ Bach Mill/ Bates Mill/ Bamptons Mill on Yardley wood Brook is first recorded 1495 and belonged to Colebrook Priory nearby. Priory Road was the dam of Bamptons Pool. The name of Brompton Pool Road is a map misreading of Bampton, the name of the one-time owners. 'Bach' means ' a small stream'.
Bromsgrove Street B5
Certainly a medieval road which was the start of the road to Bromsgrove originally by way of Holloway Head, Wheeleys Lane and Church Road Edgbaston before following the Bristol Road.
Brookhill Road B8
The hill here is recorded as Brokhill (Brookhill) on Tomlinson’s 1759 survey of Little Bromwich manor. The Brookhill estate, including this road, was laid out by the Sutton Trust 1919.
Brook Piece Walk B35
Named after an old field name (piece = field) and one of few street names on Castle Vale not derived from aeronautical connections; Plants Brook original ran alongside this field. Also derived from field names are Long Close Walk, Orchard Meadow Walk, Round Moor Walk, Rough Coppice Walk.
Brookvale Road B6/ B23
After Brookvale Park which was so-named with no historical basis by Erdington Council when Lower Witton Lake and surroundings was bought as a public park c1904. Hawthorn Brook flows into the lake. Also Brookvale Park Road, and Park Road and North Park Road, late 20th-century developments.
Broom Hall Crescent B27
Broom Hall Crescent is a modern road which stands on the site of Broom Hall, a medieval building on a moated site, rebuilt in Georgian times, demolished 1951. The name derives from Anglo-Saxon brom halas = broom nook and is mentioned in 972 AD in the perambulation of the Anglo Saxon Charter of Yardley. Also Broom Hall Grove.
Buckland End B34
From Bokenholt, Anglo-Saxon bocen holt = beech wood. The hamlet centred on this road until the development of the Municipal housing estate of Shard End after World War 2. This road led to the Cole ford and was formerly known as Black Mire/s Lane, presumably because of poor conditions underfoot. Formerly known as Maggotty Lane Buckland End Lane which leads to the hamlet. Local usage inserts an s - Bucklands End. It was probably renamed with the new housing development.
Bull Ring B5
The original heart of Birmingham where markets have taken place from Norman times. It is believed that bulls were tethered to a ring and baited in the belief that this tenderised the meat before they were killed. The Shambles where the slaughter houses/ butchers’ shops were was north of the Bull Ring. The upper part of the Bull Ring leading to the High Street was known as High Town.
Bull Street B2/ B4
Until Tudor times this was Chappell Street named after the chapel of St Thomas's Priory. After the dissolution of the monasteries the street was renamed from the Old Red Bull Tavern.
Bushmore Road B28
Bushmore Farm with 12 ha of land was sold 1910; at that time there was a race-course on the site of Bushmore Road with a grandstand on Shirley Road. The name Bushmore is medieval, more denoting marshland.
C - Streetnames
California Way B32
Derives its name from Isaac Flavell who returned from the USA 1842 and bought Stonehouse Farm, set up a brick-making business and built the California Inn after which the district is named.
Calthorpe Road B15
Sir Henry Gough of Edgbaston Hall inherited his uncle Henry Calthorpe's Norfolk and Suffolk estates 1788 changing his surname to Gough-Calthorpe, subsequently the first Lord Calthorpe, hence also Suffolk Street Queensway B1 (See Queensway.) and Norfolk Road B15; Ampton Road and Pakenham Road are named after villages on the Calthorpe Suffolk estates near Bury St Edmunds, Elvetham Road from their seat at Elvetham Hall in Hampshire. Carpenter Road is named after his wife Frances Carpenter, Sir Harrys Road after his father. George Road is named after the third Lord Calthorpe, Frederick Road after his brother who married Lady Charlotte Somerset daughter of Lord Beaufort, hence Charlotte Road and Beaufort Road c1855, and Duchess Road after his mother-in-law. Arthur Road was named after their second son who died aged 16. Fitzroy Avenue B17 and Hamilton Avenue derive from the Beaufort connection. Balden Road is named after E H Balden, the Calthorpe Estate agent until the mid-1920s. Blakeney Avenue B17 is named after a village on the Norfolk estate. Augustus Road B15 comes from the 6th Lord Calthorpe, Somerset Road from the 7th baronet, John Somerset Gough-Calthorpe, later just Gough. Sir Richard's Drive B17 derives from Sir Richard Hamilton Anstruther Gough-Calthorpe and Malcolmson Close B15 from his wife’s maiden name, Niall Close B15, the name of his eldest son.
Camden Street B1 B18
Named after Camden House, Newhall Hill/ George Street corner which formerly on this site. It was the van Warts’ house where American novelist Irving Washington wrote ‘Rip Van Winkle’ 1818.
Camp Hill B12
Kempe Hill is recorded in 1511, so-called from a family name, but possibly renamed by association with Prince Rupert’s camp there during the Civil War 1643. Rupert’s headquarters were set up at the Old Ship Inn whose site was c100 metres south of Holy Trinity Church on Old Camp Hill. Also late 20th-century B12 Camp Hill Middleway and John Kempe Way.
Camp Lane B38
Queen Henrietta Maria, wife of Charles I returning from Holland had with her 3000 horsemen, 30 companies of foot soldiers, a train of artillery and the accompanying baggage train. On 10 July 1643 all camped on Kings Norton Green and surrounding fields, the Queen sleeping that night at The Saracens Head. Next morning the army set off for Oxford.
Camp Road B75
During the Napoleonic Wars a military camp was built 1811 to house the Edinburgh Militia, the Sussex Militia, the 7th Dragoon Guards and an artillery brigade; after British victory at the Battle of Waterloo 1815 the militias were disbanded.
Cannon Hill Road B12
Cannon Hill Fields on which Cannon Hill Park was laid out 1873 are believed to be so named after royalist troops camped there 1645 before the Battle of Naseby. The road dates from a little later than the park and with Court Road and Clevedon Road marks the eastern boundary of Long More (ie. marsh) field, which was undrained swamp at the time of enclosure 1774.
Cannon Street B2
This street whose name was a London borrowing was laid out from New Street as access to the Baptist chapel built on land in Guest's cherry orchard 1738.
Cantlow Road B14
From the village of Aston Cantlow in Warwickshire where Shakespeare's parents married.
Capern Grove B32
Edward Capern 1819-1894 was a Devon postman who came to live in Harborne to live with his son 1868. He became the friend of Abraham Lincoln’s American consul in Birmingham Elihu Burritt. He wrote a book of local Birmingham poetry Sungleams and Shadows before returning to Devon 1884.
Cardigan Street B4
Named after Harriet Brudenell, daughter of the 6th Earl Cardigan, whose husband, Viscount Curzon inherited much of Duddeston 1820.
Carless Avenue B17
From a landowning family recorded by 1538, they later lived at ‘Ravenhurst’ in Ravenhurst Road. In 1651 William Carless was hiding with Charles II in the Boscobel Oak tree.
Carrs Lane B4
Uncertain, though supposed to possibly derive from Goddes Carte Lane. This may have been a cart to carry the sacraments to St Martin's-in-the-Bull Ring, or a mobile stage for mystery plays, though no evidence survives of them.
Cartland Road B14
The Priory was the home of the Cartland family for 100 years. In 1940 the house was sold and Kings Edward VI Grammar Camp Hill was built on the site.
Carver Street B1
The Carver family estate lay north of Colmore lands in the mid-18th century.
Cassowary Road B20
Handsworth College was built as a Wesleyan Methodist theological college 1881 whose coat-of-arms included a cassowary, an ostrich-like bird native to the East Indies. This building is now a residential hall of Aston University.
Castle Street B4
A tiny street off the High Street south of Carrs Lane was originally the coachyard of the early 17th-century Castle Inn. It later ran through to Moor Street, but was blocked off during the redevelopment of the early 1960s.
Cateswell Road B28
Named after Cateswell, a large Georgian house on the Stratford Road demolished in the 1980s; shops now stand on the site. This road with Tynedale Road was built c1918 as a direct link from Hall Green to Tyseley.
The Causeway B25
The church way across the clayland north of the Coventry Road became so worn and wet that it had to be raised on a long (possibly paved) causeway, whose name is recalled in a Victorian cul-de-sac off Church Road. The Long Causeway is recorded 1660 as that stretch of Church Church Road between Stoney Lane and the Coventry Road.
Cecil Road B29
In 1898 General Kitchener, hence Kitchener Road, confronted the expedition of French explorer Colonel Marchand at Fashoda, hence Fashoda Road, on the Upper Nile. The incident was settled by foreign secretary Robert Cecil Lord Salisbury, hence Cecil Road. In the same year the US Navy destroyed the Spanish fleet at Manilla Bay in the Philippines, hence Manilla Road.
Cemetery Road B75
Sutton Coldfield Cemetery was opened 1881 by Sutton Corporation through the efforts of Rev William Riland Bedford when the graveyard at Holy Trinity in the town centre was full.
Central Avenue B31
A 10-fold expansion of Herbert Austin’s 1905 Longbridge car factory for the 1914-1918 war effort led to the pruchase of land from Hawkesley Farm to house some of the increased workforce. Brick houses were built but Austin also imported some 200 prefabricated wooden houses from the USA. These houses are now the basis of the Austin village around on Central Avenue. The village was made a conservation area in 1997. Many other streets on the estate were given tree names: Cedar Way, Cypress Way, Laburnam Way, Maple Way, Rowan Way, Walnut Way.
Chamberlain Square B3
Named after the Joseph Chamberlain Memorial erected 1880 when Chamberlain was aged 44 to commemorate his work as councillor and mayor 1869-1876. The pools were rebuilt 1978 and the monument cleaned 1994.
Chad Road B15
From Chad Brook whose name possibly derives from Saint Chad, more likely from shadwell = shallow/ boundary brook. Also Chad Square and B17 Chad Valley Close named after the toy company of Johnson Brothers in Harborne in the late 19th century.
Chantry Road B13
Taken from a house named after an unauthenticated Cistercian chantry here.
Chapel House Street B12
St John the Baptist c1381 was founded as chapel of Aston church; in 1735 it was completely rebuilt in classical style; it closed 1939 and was demolished by 1961.
Charles Street B10
The wealthy Digby family had lands in Small Heath which were sold for development by Charles Wriothesley Digby of Meriden Hall. In 1881 he had married Dora Featherstonehaugh-Frampton after whom Dora Road is named. The Revd Charles Digby married Mary Somerville 1775 after whom Somerville Road B10 and B73 ; she was the daughter of Hugh Somerville, hence Hugh Road. Aubrey John, Lord Somerville died 1870 is commemorated in Aubrey Road. Bankes Road, Floyer Road and Mansel Road are also named after families into whom the Digbys married. Digby Road B73 is named in this connection, and Kenelm Road B10 and B73 are named after Admiral Sir Kenelm Digby who died 1665, forename passed down to some of the his heirs. Venetia Road B9 is named after his wife Venetia Stanley; Tilton Road after the family seat at Tilton-on-the-Hill in Leicestershire. Swanage Road is a modern Digby connection.
Cheapside B5/ B12
A name borrowed from London c1790.
Cherry Street B2
Laid out by 1750 along an original footpath through Walker’s extensive cherry orchard which stretched from High Street to Temple Row.
Chester Road B92/ B46/ B37/ B36/ B35/ B24/ B23/ B73/ B74
The Chester Road was an important route certainly from medieval times running past Birmingham linking London via Coventry and Stonebridge to the port of Chester. Indeed Bronze Age and Roman evidence have been found near the crossing of the River Tame at Castle Bromwich. The Chester Road was turnpiked as part of the Broughton-Chester-Stonebridge Turnpike 1759. As with all the former-turnpikes it tends still to be known as 'the' Chester Road.
Church Roads - Streets named after church dedications tend to indicate 19th-century churches or later. Church Lane or Church Road tends to indicate a church of ancient foundation; Church Street may be 19th-century.
Church Hill B32
St Leonard, Frankley Parish Church dates from the 12th century, though rebuilding has left very little medieval evidence; the west window is 15th-century. The church is faced in grey and red sandstone locally available from Holly Hill quarry. The tower was built of stone from the ruined Frankley Hall manor house opposite which was destroyed during the Civil War by the Royalists 1642 to prevent its use by Parliament.
Church Lane B20
St Mary, Handsworth Parish Church is first mentioned 1200; the late-12th-century tower rebuilt 15th century. In 1820 major alterations were made, and in 1826 Thomas Rickman built the south-east chapel as a memorial to James Watt. 1876-80 most of church rebuilt and lengthened in 14th-century style decorated gothic style by Birmingham architect J A Chatwin. Also Church Hill Road.
Church Lane B76
St Chad’s in Wishaw was in existence by 1085. It is 13th- and -14th-century except for the tower, which, although built in the 17th century, is traditional gothic.
Church Road B13
Church Road was formerly Ladypool Lane. St Mary’s, Moseley Parish Church is first mentioned 1405 when it made a chapel-of-ease of Kings Norton church. The oldest surviving part of church is the tower 1514 built using stone blocks from Bromsgrove's old Parsonage. The church was much rebuilt and extended by Birmingham architect J A Chatwin from 1876.
Church Road B15
St Bartholomew, Edgbaston Parish Church/ Edgbaston Old Church is first mentioned 1279, though an Anglo-Saxon foundation is certainly possible, this was chapel of Edgbaston Hall. The nave is 14th-century and stands on the site of the first building here. There was severe Civil War damage 1658-1684. In 1725 Sir Richard Gough restored the church at his own expense. The building was enlarged in the 19th century and extensively restored by J A Chatwin.
Church Road B23/ B24
St Barnabas was consecrated 1824 and is possibly the only surviving gothic-style work of this pioneering 19th-century gothic revivalist; it was enlarged 1883 with chancel and transepts by J A Chatwin also in decorated gothic; the west tower and nave remain of Rickman’s original.
Church Road B25
St Edburgha, Yardley Parish Church is first mentioned 1220, though likely of Anglo-Saxon foundation. The road is recorded as the Church Way 1294; at this time is marked the eastern boundary of Churchfeld open field. Also St Edburghas Road and Church Lane B33 recorded as Chirchelone 1431.
Church Road B26
Sheldon parish church, St Giles is a typical Warwickshire country church with much surviving 14th-century work. The church looks much as it must have done in the Middle Ages. Also St Giles Road B33.
Church Road B31
St Laurence, Northfield Parish Church: a priest is mentioned in the Domesday Book 1086 and reset into the north wall of 1900 is an original Norman round-arched doorway of c1170. The 13th-century chancel replaced an earlier building and survives completely in its early English style. The church looks very much as it did in the Middle Ages. Also Church Hill, Rectory Road, St Laurence Road.
Church Road B42
St John the Evangelist in Perry Barr was consecrated 1833, built of red sandstone ashlar in gothic style with embattled nave and west tower; chancel and transepts were added c1887.
Church Road B72
St Michael was built 1857 and enlarged 1871 and the spire built. A serious fire destroyed all but the tower 1964 and the body of the church was replaced in plain blue brick. Also New Church Road.
Church Road B73
St Peter: the Iron Church was a simple corrugated iron building with a small spired bell turret built 1877 next to the Old Smithy Birmingham Road/ Manor Hill. The new church was built 1904 by Cossins, Peacock & Bewlay in brick and terracotta in perpendicular style. Also St Peters Close.
Church Street B3
First appearing on a map 1750 this street is named from St Phillip's church.
Church Street B19
St Silas was consecrated 1854, designed in brick by J W Fiddian in gothic style with simple lancet windows. Also St Silas Square.
City Road B16
Built in 1889 when Birmingham was granted city status by Queen Victoria; it is a 1½ mile straight stretch of road, the longest in the city at the time. It was one of the first streets in the city to be planted with trees.
Clay Lane B26
Not a topographical name, but named after Henry Clay, the Birmingham inventor of papier mache patented 1772 for the manufacture of a wide variety of products from snuff boxes to sedan chairs. This was recorded 1640 as Breach Lane.
Clayton Drive B36
Built on the site of The Cedars, hence Cedar Avenue, home of Alderman Thomas Clayton, of the major canal carriers Fellows, Morton & Clayton.
Clodeshall Road B8
Surname of the medieval lords of Saltley manor, sometimes Clodeshale. Walter de Clodeshall bought the manor of Saltley in 1343; he was the richest man in Birmingham paying four times more tax than the manorial lord. The source of his wealth is not known.
Cockshutt Hill B26
Anglo-Saxon cock sceste hyll = woodcock trap Hill. Cockshutt Field was one of the medieval open fields associated with Sheldon West Hall and lay around B26 Sheldon Heath Road north end and Garretts Green Lane. It was probably enclosed by the 16th century.
Coldbath Road B13
Coldbath Brook runs through Moseley Golf Course via Coldbath Pool through Moseley Bog into the River Cole; bath derives from Anglo-Saxon or Middle English meaning a spring with the implication that it is large enough to bathe in; however, coldbath is a word commonly used for stream.
Cole Bank Road B28
Cole Bank Farm stood on the site of Hall Green College. The name of the River Cole is one of Birmingham’s few Celtic survivals and means hazel trees. The 1726 Stratford Turnpike (Edgehill), the modern Stratford Road, was set up 1726, disturnpiked 1872. There was a tollgate at Cole Bank Road/ School Road known as the Colebank Gate where there was a blacksmith’s and wheelwright’s.
Cole Hall Lane B34
Cole Hall was a medieval moated site between the River Cole and Cole Hall Farm recorded as Moat and Moat Meadow 1833. Cole Hall Farm, now a pub and restaurant, probably replaced the moated house. The ford here is not documented until 1405 when Collebregge, a wooden footbridge was built. However, it may well be very much older as it would take travellers from the Church Road Yardley ridgeway to the Chester Road, both likely pre-Anglo-Saxon routes. It was recorded in 1352 as Dead Lane, the highway from Bokenholt (Buckland End) to the Church of Yardley. The lane was improved as a result of the enclosure of Yardley Fields after 1843. A road bridge was built c1960, damaged in floods during the late 1970s? and replaced by the present bridge.
Colenso Road B16
At the beginning of the South African War 1899-1902 the Boers took the offensive. Being local people familiar with the territory and facing the outdated tactics and poor leadership of the British generals, the Boers defeated the British at a number of battles including at Colenso in KwaZulu/ Natal province in December 1899. Sir Redvers Buller arrived early the following year with additional troops and British fortunes subsequently improved.
Coleridge Passage B4
Commemorates Judge David Coleridge.
Coleside Avenue B13
Named after World War 2 when prefabricated houses/ prefabs were built as part of the drive to quickly rehouse people whose houses had been bombed.
College Road B8
Saltley College was built 1847-1852 in Tudor style around a quadrangle. Largely paid for by C B Adderley it initially catered for 30 male Anglican student teachers. The college closed 198? and is now used for a variety of community activities.
College Road B13
This was an early track improved during the final enclosures of Yardley manor c1840. It was named from Spring Hill Congregational College built 1854 to train church ministers. The original buildings are now part of Moseley School.
College Street B18
Named from the original Spring Hill Congregational College set up in the house of the Mansfield family with 13 students c1821. It moved to Wake Green 1854 and the original buildings are now part of Moseley School. at B18 Hockley. The college moved to Oxford before 1889 as Mansfield College.
College Road B23/ B44/ B73
St Mary’s College/ Oscott College was first set up at Old Oscott 1793 by a group of Roman Catholic gentry as an English Catholic school for their sons and for the clergy. A new gothic building was opened some two miles from the old college c1840 at New Oscott. This later became a training college for Roman Catholic priests.
College Road B32/ B62
Bourne College was a secondary boarding school 1882 built for Primitive Methodist boys; the school closed c1930 and demolished 1978 for housing development.
Colmore Crescent B13
Commemorates Canon William Colmore, for 30 years vicar of Moseley and a local councillor.
Colmore Row B3 Colmore Street B15
Formerly Bewdley Street, at one time Haymarket, later Ann Street. The Colmore family originated in France and speculatively bought a large amount of formerly belonging to St Thomas Priory when it was dissolved 1536. Land between Sandpits and Livery Street was sold for building by Ann Colmore from 1747. Ann Street was formerly at the Council House end of Colmore Row. Newhall Street is named from New Hall c1630, the family home there; Edmund Street (formerly Harlow Street) is named from Ann's husband's youngest brother, Rev Edmund Colmore, Great Charles Street Queensway after her son and heir (See Queensway.), and after his children are named Lionel Street, Mary Ann Street, and Caroline Street. Much of the estate finally descended to Caroline's friend Frind Cregoe on condition he adopt her surname. Cregoe Street B15 on the Colmore's Bell Barn 18th-century estate development, now Lee Bank, is named after him. (Bell Barn Road is shown on Pye’s map to be laid out as the southern limit of the development by 1792 but may well predate the estate.) Cornwall Street B3 is named after Cregoe’s county of origin; Margaret Street laid out 1885 is named after Cregoe's daughter Mrs Margaret Radcliffe. After Cregoe's grandson and heir, William Barwick Cregoe-Colmore born 1860 is named Barwick Street B3. Eden Place was cut 1867 named after Dr Thomas Eden, a Colmore in-law.
Coleshill Street B5 Coleshill Road B36
The road from Birmingham via Castle Bromwich to Coleshill probably dates from Norman times; it was turnpiked 1760. As with all the former-turnpikes it tends still to be known as 'the' Coleshill Road.
Constitution Hill B19
This was the original route into the city from the Black Country bringing in coal and iron. This London name was adopted c1700. Which constitution?
Conybere Street B12
Coney = rabbits, bere = barley. Presumably from a fieldname.
Congreve Street B3
No longer a street, but a pedestrianised passage between the Central Library and the Museum & Art Gallery. Until the building of Central Library 1973 Congreve Street ran from the Colmore Row opposite Hill Street to Summer Row. It was renamed from Friday Street 1795 and took its name from St Thomas’s Priory conygree or rabbit warren which lay at the westernmost end of the priory estate in the area around the Town Hall and Central Library. Rabbits were introduced by the Normans from the Mediterranean in the 1100s. At that time they were only half-hardy and mounds of soft earth had to be dug to allow them to make burrows. Their meat and fur were luxury items. By the 1300s there were many warrens and rabbits were an established species providing a ready and cheaply maintained supply of meat throughout the year. Until the 18th century Steelhouse Lane/ Colmore Row was known as Priors Conygre Lane.
Cope Street B18
Laid out in the 1840s this street is named after John Cope, a governor of King Edward VI Grammar School who lived in nearby Summer Hill Terrace in 1818.
Corporation Street B2/ B4
Corporation Street was the result of very early municipal planning: Joseph Chamberlain’s Improvement Scheme to aimed to build ‘a great street as broad as a Parisian boulevard’ the purpose of which was create a central shopping street of quality buildings with offices above, at the same time cutting through some of the worst city centre slums.
Coventry Road B10/ B25/ B26/ B92
This road first recorded 1226 (though probably much older) and mentioned in an Elmdon deed as the highway leading from Burmyngham towards Coventre 1346 leads from the Digbeth crossing of the River Rea to Coventry. In the Middle Ages when Birmingham was a small market town Coventry was a major city of national importance. In 1745 the Coventry Turnpike was created.
Cranemore Close B7
A mid-1970s name taken from the 19th-century Cranemore Street which took its name from the meadow, probably medieval, in which the canal reservoir was made nearby. Crane + crane/ heron; more = boggy ground.
Cuckoo Lane B6
Named after the pub which stood on Aston Road.
D - Streetnames
Dale End B4
Leading from the High Street out of the town towards Coleshill, this is one of Birmingham’s oldest streets. The Welch Cross at Welch End at the junction of High street and Bull Street was where Welsh drovers sold their cattle. Known from the 15th century as Broad Street, by 1784 re/ named Dale End, very likely an older topographical name meaning the end of the town or the end of the street beyond which is a dale/ valley.
Daniels Road B9
Originally a schoolteacher from Ebley near Stroud, Francis Daniels came to Birmingham 1891 with a wish to provide affordable social security for ordinary people. With Alderman William Kenrick as president and himself as general secretary, the Ideal Benefit Society was formed. By 1910 the society had moved into housing provision by building the Ideal Village at Bordesley Green, where Finnemore Road also commemorates an early chairman of the society, William Finnemore. Other Ideal Benefit housing was built Cherry Orchard estate in Handsworth Wood where Ebley Road B20 recalls the village of Daniels birth, and Inverclyde Road and Cooper Road are named from society officials.
Deakins Road B25
was recorded as Rudding Lane 1647. This derives from a medieval term from Anglo-Saxon hryding meaning land cleared of trees. A field called the Rudding lay west of the road in the Allerton Road area
Denbigh Street B9
Commemorates Basil Feilding, 1st Earl of Denbigh, the royalist commander who broke through the Digbeth barricades into the town at the Battle of Birmingham on Easter Monday 1643. The Birmingham parliamentarians retreated up New Street with the royalists in hot pursuit. At Cape Hill the parliamentary troop turned on the royalists and Denbigh was mortally wounded. The royalists fled and Denbigh died 5 days later.
Derby Street B7
The Birmingham & Derby Junction Railway opened 1842 with its terminus near Lawley Street Middleway (opposite Montague Street), the site of Derby Station. The Midland Railway was formed by an amalgamation of the Birmingham & Derby and the Birmingham & Gloucester whose trains ran into Curzon Street. A loop was made to take the Derby line into Curzon Street 1851 when the Lawley Street Station closed to passengers and became a freight depot.
Deritend B5/ B12
First recorded as Duryzatehende, the origin is far from certain; it may derive from Anglo-Saxon deor geat end= deer/ wild animals gate end. Celtic survivals in placenames near Birmingham are rare, but der possibly derives from Ancient British Celtic dwr = water. Deritend is a district name and, as High Street Deritend is also the name of the road south of the River Rea crossing and running north via Digbeth to the Bull Ring.
Uncertain, but possibly Anglo-Saxon dic bath = dyke pools (ie. pools at the side of the dyke), possibly dyke path, or even duck bath. Bath meant a spring with the implication that it was large enough to bathe in. Digbeth is a district name and also is the name of the road north of the River Rea crossing and running up to the Bull Ring. The lower part was formerly known as Cawsey Street ie. a built causey or causeway raised up out of the marshy land alongside the River Rea and probably paved. The upper part was at one time known as Cock Street or Well Street.
Drews Lane B8
15th-century mill Ward End Mill was taken over by John Drew 1886 to make his famous self-raising flour; it was demolished when Drews Lane was widened 1920s and council houses were built.
Driff from drit = dirt, thus 'dirt enclosure for cattle'; alternatively ‘drive fold’, the site of the medieval fold where animals left to pasture on Sutton Chase were gathered and identified.
Druids Lane B14
Named after the local Drews family of the mid-19th century. However, when the Druids Heath estate was developed in the mid-1960s the name Stonehenge Road relating to druids was used as were other Wiltshire names: Baverstock Road, Bulford Close, Idmiston Croft , Larkhill Close, Manningford Road, Stapleford Croft, Netheravon Close, Winterbourne Close.
Duddeston Manor Road B7
A 1960s streetname commemorating Duddeston Hall, the medieval moated manor house of the Holte family prior to their move to Aston Hall. The grounds were used as pleasure gardens from c1750, named Vauxhall Gardens after the London gardens from 1758, hence Vauxhall Road.
The name Duddeston derives from Anglo-Saxon Dudd’s tun = Dudd’s farm.
Duddeston Mill Road B7/ B8
Duddeston Mill on the River Rea was the Holte’s manorial cornmill and close to their Duddeston Hall manor house. The mill was rebuilt c1570 and again in the early 19th century. It ran until 1888.
Dudley Street Dudley Road B16/ B18
The Dudley Turnpike was created along an existing route 1761. As with all the former-turnpikes it tends still to be known as 'the' Dudley Road. Dudley Street was formerly known as Dudwall Lane.
Dwellings Lane B32
Named before 1834 named after 4 houses standing in close proximity in an otherwise unpopulated area known as Worlds End; Four Dwellings Farm B32 Quinton Dwellings Lane/ Quinton Road West was demolished c1940 to make way for Four Dwellings School.
E - Streetnames
Eachelhurst Road B24/ B76
From Echelhurst, Anglo-Saxon echels hyrst = land added on (to an estate or manor) + wooded Hill.
Eddish Road B33
A post-World War 2 name after the medieval Rye-eddish field through which ran a 'sling' or narrow path.
Edgbaston Road B12
A lane of some antiquity, it ran down from the Alcester Road to ford the River Rea by the Edgbaston cricket ground opposite which was the site of Edgbaston Mill, certainly from 1231. A dam here would have made crossing easier.
Edgbaston Park Road B15
The name Edgbaston derives from Edgbaston, Celboldestone. This Domesday Book spelling is probably due incorrect copying: Egebaldestone is more likely. Anglo-Saxon Ecgbeald’s tun = Ecgbeald’s farm. Edgbaston Hall medieval moated manor house may be the site of Ecgbeald’s farm. The medieval hall was replaced in the 15th-century by the Middlemores with a timber-framed building. During the Civil War it was commandeered by the parliamentarian Colonel Tinker Fox. Burned in anti-papist riots 1688 on the accession of William & Mary. After the Middlemores sold up the hall was completely rebuilt in neo-classical style 1718 by Sir Richard Gough of Perry Hall Edgbaston Park was landscaped by Lancelot Capability Brown c1776 and was made into a golf course from 1936.
Edward Road/ Vincent Parade/ Vincent Street B12
The estate of Rev Vincent Edwards was sold off after his death 1833 and laid out in sizeable building plots. For no good reason Edward Road was initially known as Edwardes Street and went only as far as from the Moseley Road to the River Rea. In 1899 it joined with the road from the Pershore Road on the Edgbaston side of the river which coincidentally was called Edward Road, and that name was applied to the whole road. Mary Street, Wenman Street, George Street originate from the names of his relations.
Elliott Road B29
Named after Elliotts metal works originally established by Sturge 1793, taken over 1928 by ICI.
Erdington Hall Road B24
Built in the Middle Ages near the Bromford crossing of the River Tame Erdington Hall was the fortified manor house of the de Erdington family. It was rebuilt c1650 in brick by ironmaster John Jennens;. by 1858 it was occupied by farmer William Wheelwright who built Wheelwright Road as an access road. The hall was demolished 1912. The road is mid-20th-century.
Este Road B26
Named after the Este family who came to Hay Hall 1423.
Eversley Dale B24
Eversley stood in Farthing Lane until it was demolished 1952 after being empty for some years. It was certainly there as a farm in 1762 and probably much earlier; the house was probably rebuilt in the 19th-century.
F - Streetnames
Factory Road B18
The site of Mathew Boulton’s Soho Manufactory 1757 for rolling metal for toys, small metal products.
Falcon Lodge Crescent B75
Falcon Lodge was a large Georgian-style house with mock crenellation and stood on the north side of the stream; it had extensive outbuildings and grounds. The estate was developed for housing after the end of World War 2.
Farnol Road B26
Laid out before 1931 and named after local Birmingham author Jeffrey Farnol 1878-1952. Vibart Road is named after a character from one of his novels. The roads stop where they do because this was formerly the Birmingham boundary with Sheldon.
Fast Pits Road B26
Fast Pits is recorded 1649; these may be flooded marlpits from which fertile clay was dug to spread on sandier soil; they could well be the holes left from extracting clay for tilemaking, in which case there would have been kilns close by. There were 10 kilns were at work in Tudor Yardley period, five of them in Church End. Ffaste Greene is recorded 1620 at junction of Holder Road, Deakins Road and Fast Pits Roads and may have been a small common pasture. Fields called Little Fast and Greate Faste are recorded south and north respectively of Fast Pits Road
Fazeley Street B9
Named after the Digbeth Branch of the Birmingham & Fazeley Canal 1799 which leaves the Birmingham & Fazeley Canal at Aston Junction (Mill Street) to Warwick Bar where it joins the Warwick & Birmingham Canal (now the Grand Union Canal).
Fentham Road B6 B23
George Fentham 1630-1698 was a country boy who became a rich Birmingham mercer; he established several charities for the local needy.
Fernwood Road/ Fernwood Close B73
Named after Fernwood Grange which was built well back from the Chester Road on a c5 hectare site by Birmingham jeweller Alfred Antrobus. The lodge survives at the corner of Chester Road and Antrobus Road; Fernwood Road roughly follows the route of the drive up to the house.
Fieldhouse Road B25
Originally continued on to the present Richmond Road to Stechford Five Ways at Yardley Fields Road/ Albert Road/ Stuarts Road/ Yardley Fields Road where Field House Farm stood between Stuarts Road and Richmond Road junction. The farm may well have dated from Anglo-Saxon times.
Five Ways Edgbaston B15
This crossroads was so-named when it had 5 roads, but should have been renamed when Calthorpe Road was added 1820.
Five Ways Stechford B33
Stechford Five Ways is at Yardley Fields Road/ Albert Road/ Richmond Road/ Stuarts Road/ Yardley Fields Road; the name, now out of use, dates from the Victorian development here after the opening of Stechford station 1844.
Flaxley Road B33
Flaxleye (flax leage = flax clearing) is recorded 1327. Flax was grown on lighter land of glacial drift.
Fleet Street B3
Laid out 1773, a London borrowing.
Flint Green Road B27
Flint Green was that part of Acocks Green focussed on Warwick Road/ Flint Green Road named after a medieval family still there by 1661; a green was common pasture land. This road formed part of the ancient Yardley ridgeway running from the Cole ford at B28 Highfield Road via Yardley Road and Church Road to the Cole ford at B33 Cole Hall Lane.
Floodgate Street B5
Originally known as Water Street it runs alongside and over the River Rea. There used to be a gate here to control the water flow.
Folliott Road B33
Named after Aylmer Folliott of Blakesley Hall who bequeathed the income from three fields for the use of the poor of Yardley parish in the early 17th century. Similarly a property known as Deepmores (ie. deep boggy ground), hence Deepmoor Road. Loeless Road is named after Loeless, the house of John Cotterill, hence Cottrells Close B14. He bequeathed it 1715 to house two poor widows. Loeless was demolished c1772, replaced by the almshouses at 152-154 School Road B14 which now bear the original plaque.
Ford Street B18
Hockley Abbey, hence Abbey Road, was a folly built c1770 in a monastic style as a home for wealthy industrialist Richard Ford; it had no religious connections. It was built using waste from Aston Furnace and nicknamed Cinder House. Disused after 1860, it fell into ruins and was demolished.
Fordrough Lane B9
A fordrough or foredrove was a rural term used to describe a rough or unmade passageway or road, a farm track; this one is shown on Tomlinson’s 1760 map. Also Fordrough B25, The Fordrough B31, B74, B90.
Fore Street B2
Fore means ‘leading to’ Corporation Street and was laid out c1887.
Forge Lane B76
Plants Brook Forge/ Plants Forge on the Ebrook aka. Plants Brook replaced the original corn mill 1727; Joseph Webster used it from 1760 to supplement Penns Mill. The forge was out of use by 1859.
Formans Lane B11
From medieval times this was Foulmoreslone, a more being an area of boggy ground; in 1562 it is recorded as Folmur Lane. It led to the ‘foul ford’ crossing of the River Cole which must have been a difficult one until a bridge was built in the early 18th century. There was a timber footbridge at here by 1777 when it was swept away by floods and rebuilt; this was rebuilt as a road bridge 1914. Fulford Hall was the home of the Fulford family first recorded 1275, later Grove Farm demolished 1897, hence Grove Road.
Four Ways B28
The junction in Hall Green of the Stratford Road, Fox Hollies Road and Highfield Road is first documented in 1550, though this usage probably much older. The Bulls Head public house is medieval in origin, but was rebuilt as a coaching inn mid-18th-century, rebuilt 1840.
Foundry Road B18
Leading to B66 Foundry Lane in Smethwick, the site of Soho Foundry, a development from Soho Manufactory and close to the Birmingham Canal. Boulton & Watt and their sons built the foundry from 1796 specifically to manufacture steam engines as the Manufactory site could not cope with further expansion.
Fox Hollies Road B27/ B28
A medieval topographical name deriving from Anglo-Saxon atte Holies recorded 1275 = at the hollies. The Fox family bought the farm from the atte Holies family in the mid-15th century, hence also Fox Green Crescent and Fox Grove. Fox Green Farm stood at the top of Westley Road opposite Broad Road in the 19th century.
There are a number of Holly streetnames in Birmingham, the older ones certainly being topographical; similarly older streetname references to foxes likely derive from fox dens in the area.
Franchise Street B42
Th streets around Wellhead Lane were the first in the Birmingham area to be laid out by a freehold land society. The 1832 Reform Act had widened the franchise of people eligible to vote, but had determined eligibility on the basis of the value of an individual’s property, which effectively excluded the working class. However, the threshold was much lower in the shires than in boroughs, £2 rateable value as against £10. The Birmingham Freehold Land Society bought up rural land cheaply and sold it on at cost to the mutual building societies in Birmingham. The Wellhead Lane estate was bought by the Investment and Permanent Benefit Building Society 1848 giving its members the right to vote in Staffordshire county elections.
Freeman Street B5
Named after a landowner, this street was in existence by 1731.
Freer Road B6
The Freers were wealthy local landowners; Canon Freer was instrumental in establishing the diocese of Birmingham 1902.
Freeth Street B16
Named after John Freeth born 1731, a local balladeer. When he took over his mother's coffee house in Bell Street (now gone under the Bull Ring Centre) it became a centre for political thought in the town. Freeth is commemorated by a Birmingham Civic Society blue plaque on the site of Bell Street near the Bull Ring shopping centre.
Frogmill Road B45
Frog Mill on the River Rea was there in the early 19th century.
Furnace Lane B19
Aston Furnace on Hockley Brook is first documented 1615 owned by William Cowper. The water was used to power the furnace bellows. In the early 19th century it was a steam-operated Paper Mill, 1845 it was used for drawing wire. By 1888 it had gone with no visible traces.
G - Streetnames
Gannow Green Lane B45
The road name drives from the placename Anglo-Saxon gamen ho = game/ play, ridge that sticks out; the implication is of a recreation area on a Hill. The medieval term green usually denoted common grazing land. Gannow Green medieval moated site is at B45 Devon Road/ Boleyn Road; it is now dry and grassed.
Garretts Green Lane B26
Garretts Green would have been an area of medieval pasture and lay in the area north of Downsfield Road/ Kenmure Road. It was named after a family recorded 1622.
Garrison Lane B9
Garrison Farm is shown on Beighton’s 1725 map. The ancient manor boundary zig-zagged here around the glacial drift on which its farmland was laid out; the site is almost certainly medieval. The farm may be so-named after Civil War troops on one side or the other were billeted there. The farm stood until the 19th century. After the Birmingham Riots 1791 troops were billeted in pubs and private houses to the annoyance of the residents; permanent barracks were built the next year between Great Brooke Street and Windsor Street, hence Barrack Street B7. The barracks were demolished in the 1930s when the area was redeveloped. Nearby Victorian streetnames using the military connection are B9 Camp Street, with Gordon Street and Wolseley Street being named after generals, Charles Gordon 1833-1885 who was killed after a 10-month siege at Khartoum in Sudan, and Viscount Wolseley 1833-1913 who led the rescue expedition.
Gas Street B1
Birmingham Gas Light & Coke Company founded 1818 built one of the first provincial gas retort houses in the country 1822; original brick walls, cast-iron columns and roof trusses survive making these the oldest remains of a gas plant in the world.
Gate Street B8
Named after the Saltley Gate at Saltley High Street on the 1760 Castle Bromwich (Coleshill) Turnpike; it was disturnpiked 1877.
Gilbertstone Avenue B26
An erratic glacial boulder marking the meeting point of the parishes of Sheldon, Bickenhill (Lyndon Quarter) and Yardley; the stone is now at Blakesley Hall. It was probably named after the Gilbert/ Gilbard family recorded in the area 1220-1410.
Gillott Road B15
Named after Joseph Gillott who made his fortune in the mid-19th century by mechanising pen-nib manufacture. He bought the Rotton Park estate 1852 and laid it out as a middle-class suburb along the lines of neighbouring Edgbaston. One of his grandchildren is commemorated in Algernon Road, and Algernon’s son in Bernard Road. Stanmore Road is named from Stanmore, Middlesex where Joseph lived and died at The Grove.
Glebe Farm Road B33
A farm here was bought by Matthew Boulton in the late 18th century and sold on to the vicar of Yardley whence the name, glebe being land owned by the priest.
Golden Hillock Road B11
A fieldname recorded 1760 but certainly much earlier, and named after land covered with broom and/ or gorse, plants typical of heathland. It was later the name of a farm.
Gooch Street B5
Formerly part of the medieval de Birmingham’s Holme Park was inherited by Sir Thomas Gooch from his speculative uncle, Thomas Sherlock. When Gooch began to develop the land for building from 1766 he used his own family name and that of his uncle in nearby Sherlock Street. Thomas Sherlock was Dean of Chichester hence Dean Street, Bishop of Bangor and later Bishop of London, hence Bishop Street. Vere Street and Hope Street commemorate Harriet Hope Vere who married Sir Edward Sherlock Gooch 1839.
Goodrest Lane B38
A cropmark at Goodrest Farm and fishponds may be the remains of the moat.
Gospel Lane B27
Gospel Oak is a probably a medieval name, possibly earlier, a site where the gospel was read at the Rogationtide beating of the parish bounds on the Yardley border, probably at Gospel Lane south of Leysdown Road. The oak tree was felled c1846. Gospel Farm stood close to the site of the Gospel Oak public house; owned by the Severne family of Hall Green Hall in late Victorian times, it was bought by the city council for housing development, hence Severne Road. This road was named as Langley Lane 1609 after Longley, the long clearing recorded 1495 in the Westley Close area off Redstone Farm Road. See Langley Hall Road below.
Gough Street B1
Harry Gough was a son of wealthy Wolverhampton wool-merchant Sir Henry Gough of Perry Hall. Harry made his own fortune in the East and bought the Middlemore estate and Mansells Farm in 1717, which later became the site of Gough Road. Harry was cousin to Sir Harry whose son bought Edgbaston Hall.
Grange Road B14
The Grange was the home of Birmingham historian William Hamper until c1869; it was demolished for housing 1895. Properly a grange is an outlying farming estate run by lay brothers belonging to a monastery (sometimes to a lord). It was used in the 19th century as a romantic medieval name.
Grange Road B24
Wealthy industrialist Benjamin Stone (1838-1914) bought The Grange 1877 and extended the grounds to c3ha and the house in a Tudor style, brick with stone dressings, now the John Taylor Hospice.
Gravelly Hill/ Gravelly Lane B23
A self-explanatory name explaining the reason for the route of this ancient road to Lichfield; glacial drift made for easier travel than the claylands so common in the Birmingham area. The name may be medieval or older. The Lichfield Road itself is of great antiquity leading as it does to a good crossing of the River Tame at Salford Bridge. In medieval times this route from Worcester to Lichfield was known as ‘one of the four great roads of England’. Also Gravelly Lane B23.
Great Brooke Street B7
After the death of Dr John Ash, one of the prime movers of the the General Hospital, his newly developing estate of Ashted was bought by a Temple Row magistrate by the name of Brookes. He converted Ash’s house into the church of St James the Less at the centre of an elegant Georgian estate for the upper middle class. Brookes died in 1801 having lost a fortune in building speculation.
Great Colmore Street B15
This was a new road built in the 18th century across the Colmore family’s Bell Barn estate to bypass the congestion of incoming market traffic along Holloway Head. It leads to Bromsgrove Street and the market.
Great Hampton Row B19
Formerly Hangmans Lane or Hay Barns Lane.
Great Stone Road B31
Named after a glacial erratic boulder from north Wales that now stands in the old stray animal pound stands opposite Northfield Church; before the 1950s it was on the corner of Church Hill/ Church Road.
Great Western Arcade B4
Snow Hill Tunnel was built as a deep cutting from Snow Hill Station to Moor Street Station 1852, roofed 1874 and the Great Western Arcade named after the railway company was built over it 1876, the first arcade in the city.
The Green Kings Norton B38
Greens were often focal points in nucleated villages, and although they may well have been used for grazing, their purpose was surely social and recreational. Kings Norton Green dates back to the Anglo-Saxon village.
The Green Castle Bromwich B36
Castle Bromwich developed as a linear village along the Chester Road and had no central focus. The green, created by a gift of 3 acres of land by Lord Bradford 1895, was christened Seven Acre Green. 50 trees were planted around it by Thomas Clayton to commemorate King George V's coronation 1910.
Green Bank Avenue B28
A 20th-century development taking its topographical name from the slope on the Stratford Road up from Greet Mill to Hall Green, known as such after the introduction of the turnpike (formerly Greet Mill Hill). The meaning of bank here = a slope up from the river. The road here was a steep and narrow holloway and became a watercourse in rain.
Green Lane B9, B21, B32, B36, B38, B43, B61 Green Lanes B73
Green lanes were rural unmetalled parish road wide enough to have a strip of grass along each side primarily used for moving livestock. In Castle Bromwich B36 the road is variously called Green Lane or Green Lanes.
Gressel Lane B33
A name derived from the family name Greswolde who owned much land on this side of the city. The lane leads Lea Ford Road and the good River Cole crossing at Lea Ford to Shard End. Greswolde Meadow is documented on the site of Wychbold Crescent 1545 but the name is likely rather earlier.
Griffins Brook Lane B30
Griffins Hill and Griffins Brook are so-called from a pre-1800 family name.
Grove Lane B17
The Grove was the home Birmingham’s first MP, Thomas Attwood; it became the home of the Kenrick family who presented the house and grounds to the City in the 1930s as Grove Park. The Lodge stands at the park entrance but the house itself which stood directly behind the lodge was demolished in the 1960s.
Grove Lane B20
The Grove was a large Georgian house, demolished 1968. Handsworth Park 1889 was made from its parkland.
Grove Lane B76
Named after The Grove, a medieval cruck-framed house and probably Sutton’s oldest building.
Gumbleberries Close B8
A building development c1970 named after a large house of that name built here 1874.
H - Streetnames
Haden Way B12
A late 20th-century road built to link the Moseley Road with the Middle Ring Road, it was named after wealthy button-maker Henry Haden who lived at Highgate House in an estate of 10 hectares at Belgrave Road/ Moseley Road (south-west corner) 1791-1837. He and his wife are buried at St Mary's Church Moseley.
Hagley Road B16 B17
The road to Hagley was originally Grindlestone Lane until it was adopted as part of the Halesowen/ Stourbridge Turnpike 1753.
Hall Road B8
Saltley Hall was built before 1360 on a nearby moated site and rebuilt in the 17th century west of that previous hall and outside the moat. lord of the manor, Sir Charles Adderley was a royalist supporter and Prince Rupert is said to have lodged here during the Civil War. The hall was a farmhouse by 1760 and demolished by 1913.
Hall Road B36
Laid out as part of the 1950s building development around Southfield Avenue on one of the old open fields of Castle Bromwich, this road linking the 1930s Bradford Road with the old village on the Chester Road was named after Castle Bromwich Hall, which was built/ rebuilt? south of the church by Sir Edward Devereux in the mid-16th century and remodelled to its present neo-classical appearance by Sir John Bridgeman at the end of the 17th century and his son, Sir John II in 1719.
Hamlet Road B28
The road leading from the Stratford Road to the hamlet of Hall Green then centred on the Church of the Ascension and Hawe Hall.
Hamstead Road/ Hamstead Hill B20
Part of the Old Walsall Turnpike 1727 from Birmingham Bull Street via Constitution Hill, Hockley Hill. The River Tame was forded north of Beauchamp Avenue. Hamstead Mill was a very early mill and is mentioned as Handsworth Mill in the Domesday Book. The first Hamstead Bridge would therefore have been built here at an early date. There is also a B43 Hamstead Road running from the north-west to Hamstead.
Hamstead Hall Avenue B20
Hamstead Hall was a medieval moated manor house at Hamstead Hall Avenue/ Beauchamp Avenue from the mid-12th until the 18th century when it was demolished to be replaced by a new hall Hamstead Hall Avenue/ Acfold Road/ Parkside. This was demolished 1935. Its ruined icehouse can be found near the River Tame.
Handsworth New Road B18
Was new in 1885 built to improve access to Soho Road from the Dudley Road.
Hannon Road B14
Named after Sir Patrick Hannon MP for the Moseley constituency 1922-45.
Harborne Park Road B17
Harborne House was at one time Harborne manor house; the private park surrounding it gave the road its name. The 18th-century building became Bishops Croft 1911, residence of the bishops of Birmingham.
Harts Green Road B17
Named after Harts Green Farm which survived as a dairy farm until the early 1930s; the farm house was demolished 1934 with the building of Harts Green Estate.
Hartopp Road B74
Four Oaks Hall Luttrell Road was designed by William Wilson for Lord Ffolliot c1680 on land formerly part of Sutton Park; a statute of King Henry VIII was invoked allowing anyone to enclose 30 hectares of waste land and to construct a house on Sutton Chase. It was owned by the Luttrell family from 1744, by the Hartopp family from 1792. The estate was sold by Sir John Hartopp after 1870 to a company to build a Four Oaks racecourse; this failed to attract sufficient racegoers and in 1890 the hall and estate was sold to the Marquis of Clanrikarde who sold the land for residential development with restrictions on building and use similar to those imposed by the Calthorpes in Edgbaston. The hall was demolished 1898.
Hay Hall Road B11
Hay Hall Lane was so known at least from the early 18th century. Hay Hall was a moated medieval house probably built by Robert de la Hay c1300. The hall came into the Este family 1423. The 15th-century hall was extended in Tudor times and the front (originally the rear) rebuilt in Georgian neo-classical style after a fire c1810. It was restored 1948 and is now used as offices. Kings Road B11 is named after the family who lived at Hay Hall in the 19th century.
Haye House Grove B36
Haye House was held by the Chattocks probably from medieval times until the end of the 19th century. Hay Hall was rebuilt 1603 probably for the third time and the site is now built over. The original moated site was abandoned and Haye House built to replace it at Ermington Crescent/ Haye House Grove.
Hawkes Street B10
Henry Hawkes was mayor of Birmingham 1852.
Hawkesley End B38
A pond may be the remains of the moat surrounding Hawkesley Hall West Heath. The large housing estate was named after this hall.
Hawkesley Drive/ Hawkesley Crescent B31
Hawkesley House Longbridge was a great hall built in the 13th century but with excavated evidence from the 11th century. It was occupied for Parliament 1644/ 5 during the Civil War, surrendered to the Royalists and burned. The hall rebuilt 1654, was replaced in the mid-19th-century by a house/ farm which was demolished to make way for 3 municipal blocks of flats 1958.
Hawkesley Mill Lane B31
Hawkesley Mill was the top mill on the River Rea and is known to have existed in 1255. It survived as a corn mill until c1890. Also Mill Lane and The Mill Walk.
Hazelwell Fordrough Hazelwell Lane Hazelwell Road Hazelwell Street B29
Hazelwell is a topographical name - a well/ spring near hazel trees. Hazelwell Hall manor house stood near Hazelwell Recreation Ground. Parliamentary commander Colonel Tinker Fox fortified the hall during the Civil War c1644 which was rebuilt as a neo-classical house in the 17th century. By 1840 it was a farmhouse which was demolished for The Hazelwell public house in the 1930s.
Heartlands Way B8/ B24
The Heartlands Development Corporation was set up in the 1990s to revitalise a long swathe of decayed industrial land along the Rea and Tame valleys. The Heartlands Spine Road opened in the late 1990s and was renamed Heartlands Way from Saltley to Bromford Bridge; from Bromford Bridge to the Chester Road it is Fort Parkway B24/ B36/ B35 named after the Fort Dunlop tyre factory, now partly the site of the Fort shopping centre, although tyres are still produced close by.
Heath Road South/ Heath Road B31/ B30
Leads across Row Heath ie. rough heath. The heath is also commemorated in High Heath Close. Similarly Rowheath Road: the barn of Rowheath Farm/ Row Heath Farm still stands. It is an 18th-century timber-framed barn of 7 bays with 2 wagon entrances to the threshing floor. It is now converted into dwellings.
Heath Street B18
Named after Birmingham Heath, a large area of uncultivated land now Winson Green.
Heath Mill Lane B9
Formerly Coopers Mill Lane. Heath Mill used the dammed waters of the River Rea which often caused problems at Deritend ford by making the river too deep to cross. There is also a record of a windmill known as Deritend Heath Windmill at Heath Mill Lane/ Fazeley Street from the mid-18th- to the mid-19th century.
Heathfield Road B19
Handsworth Heath lay north of Hockley Brook. It was poor undeveloped agricultural land which was all enclosed by 1790. Heathfield House was a large Georgian house designed c1790 for James Watt who died here 1819. The house stood in a 20ha park between North Drive and West Drive.
Heath Way B34
The original route of the Heath Way ran from Shard End to Buckland End. It was extended to Hodge Hill Common to give access to the municipal housing development of Shard End after World War 2. It was named from the Heath which lay between Cat Lane and Heath Way.
Heaton Street B18
Named from the Heatons of Birmingham Mint fame. Ralph Heaton founded a brass foundry in Shadwell Street 1794 which became the Birmingham Mint 1889.
Heeley Road B29
Bournbrook Mills were built by Henry Cambden 1707 for blade making; by 1816 gunmakers Heeley & Co were using the premises. The mill site at the north end of Dale Road is now occupied by industrial premises.
Henshaw Road B10
Named from Frederick Henry Henshaw 1807-1891 the artist who lived in Green Lane Small Heath. Turner encouraged his nature work and he is especially noted for his woodland scenes. Birmingham Art Gallery has examples of his work.
Heybarnes Road B10/ B25
First recorded as Haybern 1370 derives from Anglo-Saxon geheag bernes or geheag burna = barley-house enclosure/ close, or enclosure by the brook, ie. the River Cole.
High Street B5
With Digbeth, this is one of Birmingham oldest streets. The section adjoining New Street was known in the Middle Ages as the Beast Market or the English Market or Rother Market; the Welch End or Welch Market between the junction with Bull St and Dale End was where Welsh drovers brought their stock for sale.
Highfield Road B8
This road was laid out after enclosure and named after the High Field which it crossed, one of the medieval open fields of Saltley and the last in Aston manor to be enclosed 1817.
Highgate Road B11/ B12
This may derive from medieval heyne gate = high way, but is more probably a London import borrowed to add prestige to late-18th-century housing development in the area. Henry Haden's Highgate House was so-named by 1791. Highgate Road runs between the manors of Bordesley and Kings Norton and may have developed as a perambulation track marking the boundary. Highgate Middleway was constructed in the late 20th century as part of the Middle Ring Road scheme.
Hill Street B1
This street was laid out after 1750 and given a topographical name.
Hill Hook Road B74
Derives from Anglo-Saxon hyll = Hill + huc = a pointed piece of land. Hill Hook Mill stood on the stream west of Netherstone Grove and is recorded on the 1st Edition OS map as Hill Oak Mill. The village of Hill to which Hill Hook presumably refers lies along B75 Hill Village Road and B74 the Lichfield Road.
Holborn Hill B7
With Long Acre this is a 19th century borrowing from London; it was formerly Pool Lane named after the mill pool of Park Mill. The mill, also known as Bentons Mill, had two pools, one on Aston Brook, the other on a leat whose dam was crossed by Pool Lane. It was a blade mill 1725, rebuilt by Richard Benton to make blades by 1774. From 1829 it was a rolling mill, and later a sandpaper factory. The water rights were sold to allow Aston Brook to be culverted in 1892. In 1900 the mill buildings were incorporated into Plume Works, demolished 1941. No visible traces.
Holder Road B25
Named after brewer Sir John Holder who owned land here; Flora Road, Geraldine Road, Gladys Road, Kathleen Road are named after his daughters. Holders Lane B13 and Sir Johns Road B29 commemorate him near his home at Pitmaston, hence Pitmaston Court demolished 1923 by the Ideal Benefit Society for their offices. The road is recorded as Burdenslone 1647
Hole Lane B31
Named after Hole Farm which stood just south of the river crossing certainly until the 1860s, by Hole Farm Road. The term holm later hole denoted flood meadows; it came to be used for a large deep pool on a river.
Holford Drive/ Holford Way B6/ B42
Holdford/ Holford/ Oldford recorded 1591 probably derives from old ford. It is likely that this was the crossing point of the Roman Icknield Street across the River Tame. The ford was some 200m east of B42 Aldridge Road and replaced by Perry Bridge on Aldridge Road 1612. Holdford Farm stood west of B6 Holford Drive/ Pavilion Road.
Holliday Street B1
Named after William Holliday, mayor 1863.
Holloway Head B1
The old road to Bromsgrove and Worcester worn down to a hollow way; the head is the summit of the Hill.
Holly Bush Grove B32
The Holly Bush Inn stood on this site on Beech Lanes which was renamed Hagley Road West 1926. A new Hollybush/ Holly Bush, now Jeffersons was built further up the Hill, towards Birmingham.
Holte Street B6
Named after the Holte family: Sir Thomas Holte built Aston Hall c1631. Bracebridge Street is named from the Aston Hall connection: the Bracebridges of Atherstone Hall were related to the Holtes. The last of the line, Charles Holte Bracebridge died 1872, is buried at Mancetter. Great/ Lister Street B7 is named after Sir Lister Holte of Aston Hall who originally leased the land, later to become Ashted, to Dr Ash.
Holyhead Road B21
The 1727 Wednesbury Turnpike was laid out largely as a new road via existing villages. The road was further improved by Thomas Telford 1801 as part of the London-Holyhead Mail Road after the Act of Union to allow Irish MPs easier access to the port of Holyhead. As with all the former-turnpikes it tends still to be known as 'the' Holyhead Road.
Homer Street B12
Named after the Homer family who owned the tannery on the site of Lime Grove.
Horse Fair B1
The Horse Fair is a short stretch of road from Smallbrook Queensway as far as Essex Street; thereafter the road is named Bristol Street. This was Brick Kiln Lane until the end of the 18th century when the horse fair was moved here from the town centre to the outskirts. The markets, including those for livestock used to stretch from the Bull Ring the length of the High Street and Dale End.
Hospital Street B19
Opposite the General Hospital in Summer Lane began 1765 by Dr John Ash but not finally opened until 1779. It was replaced with a new building in Steelhouse Lane 1897.
Hurst Street B5
Formerly Hurst Hill, the name derives from Anglo-Saxon or Middle English and means wooded Hill. It became Hurst Street c1785.
Hurst Green Lane B76
Hurst Green Farm is built on a medieval moated site; a hurst was a wooded Hill.
Hutton Road B8
Named in the 19th century after Birmingham’s first historian William Hutton who lived at Red Hill opposite this street on Washwood Heath in the second half of the 18th century. Bennetts Hill was his son’s house opposite, hence Bennetts Road.
I - Streetnames
Icknield Street B18
Icknield (or Ryknield) Street is the name of the Roman road from Bourton-on-the-Water to Wall; William Hutton incorrectly believed that the course of the Roman road from Metchley fort to Sutton Park ran through Hockley.
Icknield Port Road B18
Laid out from Ladywood to Winson Green c1850 it took its name from the canal wharves on the Ladywood Loop of the Birmingham Canal which it crosses near Rotton Park Street.
Inge Street B5
A mid-19th-century development, Inge Street was part of the wealthy Inge family’s estate. Nearby Thorp Street is named after the family home at Thorpe Hall, Thorpe Constantine, Staffordshire. Wrottesley Street 1844 is named after Henrietta Wrottesley who married Theodore Inge in the mid-18th century.
Ingleby Street B18
Laid out in the 1840s this street is named after Clement Ingleby, a lawyer of Welsh extraction who founded the Birmingham St David’s Society 1824.
J - Streetnames
Jaffray Crescent B24
Jaffray Suburban Hospital 1884 was opened by the Prince of Wales 1885 to relieve pressure on the General Hospital in Steelhouse Lane and had 56 beds for chronic cases; it was largely funded by John Jaffray, business partner of John Feeney of the Birmingham Journal. It was demolished towards the end of the 20th century and housing and a medical centre built on the site.
James Watt Street James Watt Queensway B4
Originally known as Thomas Street until 1882. (See Queensway.)
Jenkins Street B10
In 1845 the Jenkins family owned Small Heath Meadow and Small Heath Fields later developed as Jenkins Street.
Jennens Road B4
Named from the Jennens family; John Jennens had a very large town house on the High Street, owned iron furnaces at Bromford and Aston. His son Charles was a close friend to Handel. Andover Street is named after a Jennens’ descendant, Mary Viscountess of Andover c1800 who inherited much of the family fortune and land in this area. Howe Street is named from Admiral Earl Howe’s daughter, the niece of Charles Jennens; she married the Honourable Penn Assheton Curzon 1787, hence Curzon Street, and they inherited most of the Jennens estate.
Jesson Road B75
Thomas Jesson was a silk merchant who founded the Jesson Charity 1707 to help with apprenticeships and education of Sutton children. The charity is still in existence.
John Bright Street B1
A Birmingham Liberal MP from 1857 until his death 1889.
Jutland Road B13
One of the roads of a new council estate built c1920 commemorates the naval Battle of Jutland against Germany during World War 1 1916. Nearby Vimy Road commemorates the Battle of Vimy Ridge 1917.
K - Streetnames
Kents Moat B26
Kents Moat off Sheldon Heath Road is complete and retains a substantial depth although it is now dry and has 20th-century housing in the middle. This sub-manor house of Sheldon was known as West Hall (Sheldon Hall was the East Hall) and dates from the 12th century.
Key Hill B18
Corrupted from Kaye Hill named after Sir Arthur Kaye in the 18th century.
King Edward Square B73
Sutton Town Hall was originally built 1863 as the Royal Hotel for railway travellers on the line from Birmingham which had opened the previous year. It was bought as municipal offices for Sutton Coldfield 1902 and the square named after the new king, Edward VII.
King Edwards Road B1
This was formerly Crescent Street named after a large and finally unsuccessful building venture modelled on Bath’s famous example. It was built on land belonging to the King Edwards School Foundation.
Kingsbury Road B23/ B24/ B35/ B76.
The Kingsbury Turnpike was created 1826. As with all the former-turnpikes it tends still to be known as 'the' Kingsbury Road.
Kyotts Lake Road B11
Between Henley Street and Kyotts Lake Road, Foullake is recorded in the early 18th century. The land was later bought by the Kyott family who renamed the lake.
L - Streetnames
Ladypool Road B11/ B12
Revenue from fish caught in the pool at the corner of Brighton Road, Balsall Heath Park, was given to Our Lady’s, St Mary’s Church, Moseley. The use of ‘Our Lady’ indicates that this was a pre-reformation name. This was Ladypool Lane until building development in the second half of the 19th century.
Langley Hall Road B92
Langley Anglo-Saxon lang leage = long field/ clearing; Langley Hall Farm buildings stood certainly up to c1970 where Hall Green Social Club is now. The area was Bromhale in 972 = 'heath where broom grows'. There was an earthwork here known as Clay Walls, but its origin and purpose are known. See Gospel Lane above.
Langley Road B10
Named after Birmingham artist Walter Langley who moved to Newlyn in Cornwall. He was known for his paintings of people, some of which are in Birmingham Art Gallery. He died in 1922.
Larches Street B11
After Joseph Priestley’s Fair Hill house was burned down in the 1791 Riots, Dr William Withering had a new mansion built named The Larches after two trees he planted on the site. He moved here from Edgbaston Hall 1799. Birmingham’s first MP Thomas Attwood also lived here for a time as did the banking family, the Galtons. Sir Francis Galton was born here 1822 whose mother was the daughter of Erasmus Darwin whose grandson was Charles Darwin of The Origin of Species fame. Two of his brothers were named Erasmus and Darwin, hence Erasmus Road and Darwin Street B12. The Larches was demolished 1874 for housing development.
Lawley Middleway B4
Lawley Street was named in the 19th century after Sir Robert Lawley, from 1780 MP for Warwickshire which then included Birmingham.
Lea Ford Road B33/ B34
The road is documented 1356. A ford here, Coleford/ Cole Ford, en route from Gressel Lane and Sheldon Hall is first documented here 1544 though certainly much older (Anglo-Saxon?); there was a good river crossing here on sand and gravel. It was subsequently supplemented with a wooden footbridge. A bailey road bridge was erected soon after World War 2; the present bridge was built c1960.
Lea Hall Road B20
Lea Hall B20 Handsworth Wood Lane/ Lea Hall Road is a 3-storey neo-classical house built c1790 for the Muntz family. The stone-built Lea Hall Farm stood on Wood Lane and is the likely origin of the name. The railway junction here is known as Lea Hall Junction built 1887; it joins the Grand Junction Railway Birmingham-Liverpool via the Perry Barr-Soho Loop with the Birmingham, Wolverhampton & Stour Valley Railway.
Lea Hall Road B33
Lea Hall manor house (sub-manor of Yardley) was built on a moated site south of Lea Hall Station at B33 Lea Village/ Folliott Road and is evidenced by 19th-century fieldnames, Pool Field and Moat Leasow; it was demolished 1937 with the building of Lea Hall railway station. Lea derives from the Anglo-Saxon word for a clearing. This road was called Somerlone (Summer Lane) in 1402. Somerlone Mdw is recorded 1444 east of Cole Hall Lane, north of Kitts Green Road. A small stream ran down to the River Cole here; presumably the land here was too waterlogged in winter and only usable as grazing in summer.
Lea Village 1275 from Anglo-Saxon leage = forest clearing, = hall. The village stretched from Lea Hall along the road now called Lea Village down to the junction of Gressell Lane and Lea Ford Road.
Lench Street B4
Lench’s Trust founded 1525 is Birmingham’s oldest charity named after its benefactor William Lench whose bequest is used mainly to maintain almshouses.
Ley Hill Road B74
Ley Hill is first recorded as atte Leye 1275, la Lee, Anglo-Saxon leage hyll = forest clearing Hill. The Hill is between B74 Lichfield Road and Four Oaks Road in the area of The Fordrough. Ley Hill Road is a little way from the Hill itself.
Ley Hill Farm Road B31
Lichfield Road B6/ B23/ B72/ B74
The Lichfield Road is of great antiquity leading as it does to a crossing of the river Tame at Salford Bridge. Lichfield Street was the northern end of what is now Corporation Street. In 1807 it became a toll road, the Lichfield Turnpike. As with all the former-turnpikes it tends still to be known as 'the' Lichfield Road.
Lifford Lane B30
Lifford = la Ford, ie. the ford across the River Rea. The ford where B30 Lifford Lane now bridges the river may be pre-Roman, but was certainly in use on the Roman Icknield Street, the road from Alcester to Metchley fort. The road runs via Stirchley whose name means ‘(Roman) road clearing’. Its route follows the Pershore Road to Bournville Lane after which it is unknown. The present Lifford Hall was built 1604 on the site of a medieval building; Adam de la Ford is recorded as living at Lifford Hall 1275. It was the home of James Hewitt, Viscount Lifford who became the Chancellor of Ireland.
Lincoln Road/ Lincoln Road North B27
is recorded as Shawley Lane 1495. The placename Shawley / Shirley refers to a site in the Bosworth Road area and may mean shire clearing. The Worcestershire/ Warwickshire county boundary crossed the Coventry Road east of B26 Clay Lane.
Little Bromwich Road B8
Little Bromwich; Bramewice, Anglo-Saxon brom wic = broom (ie. the shrub) dairy farm (Little was added to distinguish it from West Bromwich and Castle Bromwich) 13th century Parva Bromwich (Latin = little); by 1658 was also being called Ward End. Alum Rock covers much of the former manor.
Little Heath Croft B34
On 18th century maps the area around School Lane/ Heathway is shown as Little Heath; the name of the road was given in the post-World War 2 housing development of Buckland End and Shard End. Similarly The Heathway and Heathland Avenue was named after the Heath west of Buckland End and Heathland Avenue
Livery Street B3
Laid out in 1745 taking its name from Swann’s Riding Academy at the junction of Cornwall Street, at the time this was the longest street in Birmingham. It gave rise to one of few Birmingham expressions, ‘a face as long as Livery Street.’
Lodge Road B18
A house at Lodge Hill is shown on Kempson’s 1810 map as The Lodge at Harmer Street/ Bredon Croft. It may have derived its name from the medieval lodge of the keeper of the lords of Birmingham’s rabbit warren on Birmingham Heath. Lodge Road ran along the dam of Little Hockley Pool.
Longmore Street B12
Named after Longmoors Farm and estate along the River Rea. The name is probably medieval, a field name meaning 'long marsh'; until the Rea was culverted at the end of the 19th century land here was regularly subject to flooding. Longmoors was owned by the chaplain of Deritend, Dr John Cox, and was finally sold for building development 1869.
Louise Lorne Road B13
Named after Louise 1848-1939, 8th child of Queen Victoria; she married the Marquis of Lorne, later to be the Duke of Argyll. She became a noted sculptor; the statue of her mother with the monarchs on the front of Lichfield Cathedral is hers.
Loveday Street B4
Named after Loveday Croft on this site belonging to St Martin’s-in-the-Bull Ring whose rent paid provided for entertainment on ‘loveday’, a mediaeval church festival when the parish priest encouraged people to settle disputes.
Lozells Road Lozells Street B19
Streets named from the placename whose origin is uncertain. In 1546 it is recorded as Lorres Hill or Lowsill - it may be a personal name ie. Lor’s wood? Bird 1991 believes it derives from Lowes Hill after Lowe’s Farm by Hockley Brook.
Ludgate Hill B3
An 18th-century London borrowing.
Luttrell Road B74
Named after the Luttrell family. Simon Luttrell of Four Oaks who became the first Earl of Carhampton benefited from the Corporation’s generosity by being granted in 1757 some 17 hectares of Sutton Park for his own estate.
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March 12th, 2011 #24 bill.dargue's Avatar bill.dargue bill.dargue is offline
Default Re: History of Birmingham Street names
M - Streetnames
Macdonald Street B5
Named after a family from Scotland in the early 19th century; Angelina Street and Emily Street are named after two daughters.
Mackadown Lane B33
An Anglo-Saxon road, derived from Machitone, Anglo-Saxon Macca’s tun = Macca’s farm, the original manor of Sheldon in the Domesday Book. Prior to Sheldon Hall being built probably in the 12th century the Anglo-Saxon manor house and village stood at the corner of Mackadown Lane and Tile Cross Road. Tile Cross Road and Mackadown Lane were tracks giving access around the great open field of Rye-Eddish and on towards Sheldon parish church, St Giles.
Magdala Street B18
Named after the Battle of Magdala in Abyssinia/ Ethiopia 1868 at which Sir Robert Napier defeated the army of Emperor Theodore of Abyssinia.
Maitland Road B8
Named after Sir Arthur Steel-Maitland 1918-1929 Conservative MP for Erdington which included Alum Rock at that time.
Maney Corner B72
The name Maney is first recorded 1285 and derives from Anglo-Saxon Manna eg = Manna’s well-watered land; or maene eg = common well-watered land. The land is well watered by Plantsbrook which flows from Sutton Park via Mill Street, is now culverted under Sutton town centre, to reappear at Upper Holland Road.
Maney Hill Road B72
Maney Hill rises south of Maney. Monkseaton Road is believed to be the site of a standing stone of unknown origin taken for use as a padstone for the 14th-century windmill that stood here. Maney Mill is Birmingham’s earliest record of a windmill 1309.
Manor Drive/ Manor Hill B73
Sutton Manor House is documented 1315, built by the Earls of Warwick, demolished c1510. The hall was rebuilt early in the 16th century, in poor condition by 1762 and demolished. By 1860 a new house was built which still stands.
Manor House Lane B26
The original lane to Lyndon manor house was made into a private drive to the house known as Old Gilbertstone in 1846; this lane replaced it as a route to the manor house, which survived in a derelict state until c1970 when it was demolished.
Manor Farm Road B11
Greet manor house was a timbered building which stood close to the River Cole from medieval times; it was rebuilt in late Georgian times and known as Manor Farm. Demolished by 1930 Greet Inn stands on the site.
Manor Road B33
A fanciful name for a late-Victorian/ Edwardian development. There is no manor house nearby.
Mansfield Road B25
Mansfield Road commemorates the family which owned Pinfold House and 25 hectares of farmland here in the 18th century.
Margaret Road B17
From Margaret Nettlefold who ceremonially inaugurated the building of Moor Pool Estate. Her husband John Sutton Nettlefold was an influential chairman of the Housing Committee and very interested in the garden-city concept.
Marsh Hill/ Marsh Lane B23
These are self-explanatory topographical names and certainly in use by 1804, though undoubtedly much older. The west end of Marsh Lane is the source of a small tributary which runs westwards through Bleak Hills recreation ground to Hawthorn Brook at Witton Lakes. Was this the marsh?
Martineau Square B2
Martineau Street was built as part of the Corporation Street development from the 1870s onwards, taking its name from Thomas Martineau, Lord Mayor 1884-1885-1886. Martineau Square was developed c1970 as a pedestrian shopping precinct and redeveloped 2000.
Mason Road B24
Cut in the 1880s this road is name after local philanthropist Josiah Mason.
Masshouse Circus Queensway B4/ Masshouse Lane B5
Named after the church of Ste Marie Magdelene & St Francis, Birmingham’s first Roman Catholic church since the Reformation. It was destroyed by an anti-papist mob 1688. The road became part of the Inner Ring Road in the late 1960s. (See Queensway.)
Maypole Lane B14
The May Pole is believed to have been a tall pole which stood here to direct travellers, later also used as a maypole.
Metchley Lane B15
Derives from Anglo-Saxon micel gehaeg = small hedged/ fenced field/ enclosure, earliest record Michelhaye 1350. Metchley Park lay east of Metchley Lane around Metchley Park Road and was a medieval deer park belonging to the de Birmingham family, which may be the original site of the small hedged enclosure. Metchley Lane is an old route running from the Harborne Lane river crossing of Bournbrook up to Harborne. Metchley Drive is 20th-century development. Metchley Abbey at Metchley Lane/ Abbey Road is an early 19th-century house in gothic style. The name is a romantic association typical of the period, for there never was an abbey here.
Middlemore Road B31
Named from the Middlemore family who held the Manor of Edgbaston from the 14th century for c300 years.
Middleton Hall Road B30
The name derives from Anglo-Saxon middle tun = middle farm (between Kings Norton and Northfield), first recorded as Middeltune. Middleton Hall which may have stood on a moated site at was at Northfield Road/ Middleton Hall Road junction. The former road was an old route along Cotta’s ridge ie. Cotteridge from Northfield; Middleton Hall Road is a 20th-century development.
Mill Lane B5
Town Mill was built by William Ash 1549 as a blade mill; it was destroyed by royalist troops 1643. Rebuilt as a corn mill it was converted c1750 to slitting iron for nail making by Sampson Lloyd II. The mill was gone by 1839.
Mill Lane B3
Named after Digbeth Mill/ Cotterills Mill/ Northfield Mill on the River Rea which was still was working as a corn mill in 1908; it was demolished in the 1930s.
Mill Lane B32
Connops Mill on Stonehouse Brook was probably Weoley Castle’s mill, site at the north end of Senneleys Park from at least the 15th century. It takes its name from Benjamin Connop, miller, farmer and beer retailer in 1873. The mill house became the Mill Inn by 1900.
Mill Street B72
Sutton Mill on Plantsbrook is reputed to have been the manorial mill since the time of King Athelstan (r.924-939) and was certainly there in 1298. During the early 15th century five millpools lay between the church and the manor house (Manor Road), the dam serving as a roadway, present Mill Street. The pool outlet flowed through an arch under the dam to the mill on the east side of Mill Street. The dam was breached in 1668 causing serious flooding in the town; the mill was ruined and never rebuilt and the pool was subsequently drained.
Millhouse Road B25
Wash Mill on the River Cole was restored by Richard Bradewell 1385. This was Yardley’s mill and until 1914 remained a twin-wheel corn mill. It was demolished in the late 1920s when the area was developed for municipal housing. The road follows the course of the mill’s headrace.
Millpool Hill Alcester Road South B14
Mill Pool Hill has been so-called since the 18th century; Mill Pool Hill Farm stood on the site of Meadfoot Avenue but other than the name no documentary or archaeological evidence of the mill here has been found.
The Minories B4
This passage was made from Bull Street into The Square, Old Square c1697 and named from the friars minor of St Thomas’s Priory which stood close by. It was maintained as a right of way when Lewis’s store was built over it.
Moat Coppice B32
Before it was demolished Moat Farm had visible signs of a medieval moat.
Moat Lane B5
Formerly Court Lane, the road leading to Birmingham Manor House, occupied by the de Berminghams from the 12th century where the manorial court took place. The moat was dug in the 14th century; it was filled and all buildings demolished 1815 to make way for the open market.
Moat Lane B26
A moated site 45m square at Gilbertstone Recreation Ground is now covered by a car park and electricity substation.
Moat House Road B8
Little Bromwich Hall was the manor house of Little Bromwich, later known as Alum Rock. It is a moated site known as the Moat House by 1911, though no visible trace of a moat survives. By the 18th century it had become a farmhouse and an Anglican convent in 1911
Moilliet Street B18
Named after Jean Louis Moilliet who founded Moilliet & Sons Bank after 1815 which joined with Lloyds Bank in 1877. The Moilliet family bought and rebuilt Abberley Lodge at Great Witley 1836, hence Abberley Street.
Mole Street B12
A handsome estate was built on the land of Thomas Mole after his death 1831. Highgate Road was formerly known as Thomas Street. Mole’s mansion lay off B11 Anderton Road.
Monument Lane B45
Lord Plymouth’s Monument 1834 is a granite obelisk erected by the Worcester Yeomanry Cavalry commemorating his role as colonel: Plymouth had raised the yeomanry against the threat of rural rebellion during the depression after the Napoleonic Wars. Artillery practice took place on Plymouth’s Lickey estate.
Monument Road B16
Perrotts Folly or the Monument stands c30m high and has 139 steps. It was built as a gothic viewing tower 1758 by John Perrott on his country estate, the old manorial park of Rotton Park. The folly was used from 1884 as one of the world’s first weather stations by Abraham Follet Osler.
Monyhull Hall Road B14
Monyhull Hall manor house is a likely a medieval moated site. The present hall, built in the 16th century, rebuilt 1750 in neo-classical style, became a City Mental Hospital 1905 and, much altered with many additions, survives in its Georgian form.
Moor Street, Moor Street Queensway B5
Moor Street was formerly Mole Street possibly from Latin moldendum = mill; by 1731 both names were cited.
Moor End Lane B24
Moor End Green originates from Anglo-Saxon mor green = marshy common pasture. End usually signifies a location at the extremity of a unit of land eg. a parish, manor or quarter.
Moor Green Lane B13
Derives from 13th century Mora, Anglo-Saxon mor green = marshy common pasture. The lane was the southern limit of the park belonging to Moseley Hall; the park wall ran along its northern side in the 18th century. Prior to the Pershore Turnpike 1825 the old road followed Moseley Road/ Alcester Road via Moor Green Lane after which it forded the River Rea at Dogpool Lane.
Moor Hall Drive B75
Old Moor Hall/ Old Moor Hall Farm/ Old Farm/ Moor Hall Farm/ the Moat House is not to be confused with nearby Moor Hall built by Bishop Vesey and since demolished and rebuilt. Old Moor Hall is recorded 1434 owned by Roger Harewell and is traditionally Bishop Vesey’s birthplace 1462?. This sandstone building has surviving 14th-century roof timbers.
Moorsom Street B6
Captain W S Moorsom was not only one of the earliest Birmingham town councillors but the engineer responsible for the Birmingham & Gloucester Railway 1840, a line famous for the steep and long Lickey Incline; Moorsom bought in some American locomotives to assist trains up the slope.
Muntz Street B10
Industrialist George Frederick Muntz was a Birmingham MP 1840-57, his son Philip Henry Muntz was also an MP and Lord Mayor 1839-41. The street was named by the end of the 19th century. Umberslade Road B29 is named after the Muntz family home in Hockley Heath from the 1850s. The hall was built 1700 for Thomas Archer, architect of St Philip’s Cathedral.
N - Streetnames
Navigation Street B2
Named after the canal navigation, the Birmingham canal cut nearby 1769.
Nechells Park Road B7
There is no documentary evidence of Nechells Hall but Nechells Park is shown on Beighton’s 1725 map; Nechells Park Farm may well have been the successor of an earlier manor house.
Needless Alley B2
Dating from the early 18th century the name is probably a corruption of ‘Needlers’ Alley’.
Newbridge Road B9
The ford through the River Cole at Yardley Green Road was a difficult on clay. It was referred to as Blakeley Ford 1383 but as Rotyford 1435 ie slippery ford. A footbridge was built alongside the ford c1464, and the present brick New Bridge 1810, after which the road was then named.
New Hall Drive B75
New Hall originally dates to c1200 and believed to be the oldest inhabited completely moated house in England. The original house was rebuilt hence its name by Sir John de Lizours 1341. It was extended by Thomas Gibbons 1542 and extended again in the 16th- and 17th century. Much altered 1796 and again 1870 by the Chadwick family to its present form.
New Meeting Street B5
With the passing of the Act of Toleration 1689 the Old Meeting House was built on a site now under the forecourt of New Street Station (formerly Grub Street, later Old Meeting Street) and demolished 1882 for the enlargement of the station. A new New Meeting House was built 1732. Joseph Priestley was appointed pastor 1780 and the building was burned down during the 1791 Riots; it was rebuilt 1802 and consecrated 1961 as St Michael & St Joseph RC Church.
New Street B2
New Street is famously one of Birmingham’s oldest streets first recorded 1397. It was probably laid out by the lord of the manor during the 12th century with new burgage plots as the medieval town around the Bull Ring prospered. The top end of New Street was later known as Swinford Street after its destination, Swinford, ie. Stourbridge.
Newton Street B4
Laid out c1710 by John Pemberton, the builder of Old Square, and named after his friend Stephen Newton.
O - Streetnames
Oakfield Road B12
Named after Oakfield House, a large mansion built by brassfounder Thomas Cooke at the end of the 18th century; its name may derive from a fieldname.
Old Church Road B17
St Peter, Harborne Parish Church is first mentioned 1279; the lower part of tower is 14th-century possibly on an earlier base; the upper part was rebuilt in the 15th-century. In 1820 all but the tower rebuilt in classical style in brick and in 1867 all but the tower rebuilt in gothic style stone by Yeoville Thomason. Also St Peters Road.
Old Croft Lane B34
Known as Hawcroft Lane until the 19th century, a name that derives from the word haw, probably from medieval haga = hedge, enclosure, enclosed property.
Old Farm Road B33
The old farm was either Fir Tree Farm/ Firtree Farm which stood on a site between Flaxley Road and Old Farm Road, or it may refer to Hill House Farm formerly at at Flaxley Close, a three-storeyed gabled Victorian house pebble-dashed in the 20th century. As Flaxley or Flaxleys Farm it is believed to have been recorded as early as 1218 and had 17th-century timber framing in the building. After World War 2 the house was used asd the manse for the pastor of |Stechford Baptist Church in Victoria Road Stechford. It was subsequently long abandoned as a dwelling but still stood c1980 in use as a coal merchant’s; the site is now covered by the houses of Flaxley Close. This site very likely dates from the early Saxon settlement of Yardley. Also Hill House Lane.
Old Moat Drive B31
The original Northfield manor house may have stood here from the 11th until the 14th century when Weoley Castle took its place. The moat at Moat Farm was filled in 1930 and houses built 1965.
Old Square B4
Originally The Square, a high-class development 1697 consisting of an elegant square of 16 houses built by John Pemberton who lived there.
Old Walsall Road B42
The Walsall Turnpike of 1727 became the 'Old' Walsall Road when the New Walsall Road, the modern Walsall Road offered a more direct route from 1831. As with all the former-turnpikes it tends still to be known as 'the' Old Walsall Road.
Oldknow Road B10
Commemorates Dr Joseph Oldknow, Birmingham’s first High-Church Anglican, vicar of Holy Trinity, Camp Hill 1841.
Olton Boulevard B11 B27
Olton Boulevard from the River Cole crossing on the Warwick Road at Greet to the boundary at Olton via Fox Hollies was designed as an Acocks Green by-pass in the 1920s. With the outbreak of World War 2 1939 work was abandoned and the scheme has never been completed.
Ombersley Road B12
This area was one of the last to be built up in Balsall Heath. It was developed after the death in 1890 of the estate’s owner, John Gregory Watkins, who lived at Woodfield House at Ombersley near Worcester. Hence also Woodfield Road.
Oozells Street B1/ B16
Takes its name from Oozels Farm which was in existence by the 18th century; it may be the name of an earlier landowner. The street was cut 1837.
Orphanage Road B23
Formerly Bell Lane, named from Josiah Mason's orphanage 1869-1964.
Osler Street B16
From Abraham Follett Osler, meteorologist and horologist who gave Big Brum, the Art Gallery clock to the city 1885.
Oxford Street B5
Runs underneath the Birmingham & Oxford Railway 1852 which is carried from Snow Hill Station high above on Brunel’s 58-arch Bordesley Viaduct across the Rea Valley.
P - Streetnames
Paper Mill End B44
Paper Mill on Hol Brook was in existence in the 17th century and gone by the 1880s.
Paradise Circus Paradise Street B1/ B3
Paradise is quite a common land or farm name. The word came into Middle English from the Greek translation of the Bible where the word is used of the Garden of Eden (Book of Genesis). It had a variety of related meanings from enclosure to park to garden and was used for such until the 18th century. Paradise Close was a field south of Paradise Street, which was Paradise Row by 1785 and Paradise Street by 1792. (See also Queensway.)
Paradise Lane B28
Paradise Farm was rebuilt in Georgian times and demolished c1960.
Park Hill B13
Laid out 1865 and named after the park of Moseley Hall which it ran alongside. Also Park Road.
Park Lane B6
Originally Park Wall Lane or Wall Lane this road was renamed in the mid-19th century after the private parkland belonging to Aston Hall whose boundary it marked.
Park Road B11
Sparkhill Park was opened by Yardley Rural District Council 1904.
Park Road B18
Park Road was laid out along a path beside Soho Pool c1850 and was named after the park surrounding Soho House bought 1761 by Matthew Boulton built and rebuilt in neo-classical style.
Park Street B5
Named in the 1553 Survey of the manor, this was originally Little Park Street and ran along the northern edge of the parkland belonging to the lords of the manor of Birmingham. Rotton Park would have been the main hunting ground.
Pebble Mill Road B5
This 20th-century road is named after Pebble Mill, a fulling mill in the 16th century, used for blade grinding in the mid-17th century and a corn mill again by the mid-19th century. Bourne Brook here has a stony bed.
Peck Lane B2
Running from New Street to Dudley Street by 1731 and the site of the town jail, Peck Lane disappeared under New Street Station 1852; in 1862 the town council tried unsuccessfully to have the right of way reinstated, but in a gesture of goodwill the railway company built a bridge over the station along the line of the old road. Through continual use over nearly a hundred years this became a right of way and when New Street Station was rebuilt 1967 the passage (though not the name) was maintained through what is now the Pavilions shopping centre.
Peddimore Lane B76
Peddimore Hall is a 17th-century hall built for William Wood, the Warden of Sutton Corporation on a 13th-century site. The timber-framed barn dates from 1385. Peddimore derives from Anglo-Saxon Pede’s or Peoda’s mor = marshland.
Peel Street B18
Sir Robert Peel was prime minister 1834, 1841-1850. Aberdeen Street is named after Lord Aberdeen, prime minister 1852-1855; Lord Carlisle and Lord Lansdowne were members of his government, hence Carlisle Street and Lansdowne Street.
Pemberton Street B18
Thomas Pemberton who came from a family of goldsmiths built a mansion on Colmore Row/ Bennetts Hill corner. It was his son John Pemberton who built Old Square.
Penns Lane B72
Named from Joseph Penn’s mill recorded 1618; Penns Hall is first recorded 1759 leased by Joseph Webster.
Pershore Street/ Pershore Road/ Pershore Road South B5/ B29/ B30
Pershore Street was only a track until the Pershore Turnpike was created as a new route from Birmingham town centre1825. As with all the former-turnpikes it tends still to be known as 'the' Pershore Road. Pershore Street was originally called Wellington Street to commemorate the Duke of Wellington's victory at the Battle of Waterloo 1815; During the 1830s in recognition of Thomas Attwood’s efforts for wider electoral franchise, it was known as Attwood Street; Wellington was noted for his opposition to this. The street subsequently took its name from the Pershore Road into which it ran directly.
Pineapple Road B30
Pineapple Farm is first recorded 1678. Posts topped with a stone carved in a pinecone design were fashionable at this time and were known as pineapples. Presumably there were such at here. Pineapple Estate was named after the farm and was laid out in the early 1930s.
Pinfold Street B2
The pinfold or pound for stray farm animals; owners could claim their livestock on payment of a fine. The street was in existence by 1731, but the pinfold probably dates back to the 17th century.
Pitts Farm Road B24
Pitts farm/ Little Pitts Farm on the Chester Road was named after holes left by excavating sand and gravel for commercial use; a hollow still remains visible nearby in Pype Hayes Park. The farm was demolished in 1961 for housing development. Also Little Pitts Close.
Pitsford Street B18
Named from a sandpit which supplied sand especially to Birmingham brassfounders; the pit was later used to lay out the Church of England Cemetery in Warstone Lane 1848.
Plants Brook Road B76
Named after the stream also known as East Brook or Ebrook which runs southwards from Sutton Park, west of Reddicap Heath and Walmley, through Pype Hayes and into the River Tame at Castle Vale.
Pool Farm Road B28
Pool Farm stood near the Round Pool in Fox Hollies Park.
Pool Way/ Poolway B33
Named in the second half of the 20th century from Pool Lane, this is a topographical name. Clay known as marl was dug and spread on crop fields especially on lighter soils to increase the fertility. The marlpits filled with water and were used to water cattle and as fish ponds. There were also kilns at work in Yardley, five of them at Church End using clay from local pits for tile-making. Pool Lane was originally Parklone, Park Lane, so-called because it gave access to the park of Sheldon’s west hall at Kents Moat. Dagarding Way is B26/ B33 Broadstone Road/ Pool Way and the continuation as a footpath in Kents Moat Park was formerly Dagarding Weg, Dagard’s Folks’ Way, one of very few roads named from Anglo-Saxon times and presumably leading to the settlement of Dagarding’s people close by. The road here marked the boundary between the manors and parishes of Yardley and Sheldon.
Pretoria Road B9
Streets here built not long after the Boer War at the end of the 19th century include Pretoria Road capital of the Boer republic of the Transvaal; Churchill Road, Winston Churchill fought in the Boer War, was captured but escaped; Botha Road, named after the Boer general who became the first prime minister of the Union of South Africa; and Colonial Road.
Priestley Road B11
A plaque marks the site of Joseph Priestley’s country mansion, Fair Hill, destroyed in the 1791 Birmingham Riots. The house was rebuilt as the Larches, home of Dr William Withering which was demolished c1871. Auckland Road is named after William Eden, Lord Auckland, a government ambassador and friend of Priestley.
Princip Street B4
Or Princep Street was laid out by 1792 and named by 1820 after the family who owned the land from the early 18th century.
Priory Queensway B4
Formerly Upper Priory and Lower Priory named after the medieval Priory of St Thomas which disappeared during the dissolution of the monasteries. It became part of the Inner Ring Road in the mid-1960s. (See Queensway.)
Priory Road B6
Aston Priory is believed to have stood within a small moated site here. Priory Road B28
Believed to be the site of Colebrook Priory.
Q - Streetnames
Quarry Lane B31
A self-explanatory name probably dating from the Middle Ages. The Birmingham Ridge is a strip of red sandstone (Bromsgrove sandstone, formerly known as keuper sandstone) which runs from Lichfield, through Birmingham city centre, via Northfield and down to Bromsgrove. Although it is a soft sandstone and wears easily it was used locally for building. Northfield church is built of stone very likely quarried from here.
Queens Road B6
A ¾ mile drive from Aston Hall flanked by chestnut trees along the line of Queens Road is shown on Tomlinson’s map from the Lichfield Road to Aston Hall. This was a development across the south and east of Aston Park in the 1850s which included Park Road, Victoria Road, Vicarage Road, Sycamore Road, Pugh Road, Clifton Road, Tower Road and Whitehead Road. The road is named after Queen Victoria.
Queens Road B26
Named after Queen Victoria when Old Yardley Park was opened by Yardley Rural District Council on land given by Yardley Great Trust c1900. Probably from medieval times this was Back Lane around the rear of the village centre; then Grove Lane named after a large mid-19th-century mansion, The Grove (later The Poplars) at Vibart Road/ Farnol Road and the home of the Ashmore family.
Queens Park Road B17
Queens Park 1898 was paid for by funds raised at Queen Victoria’s Jubilee 187l; Turks Lane was then renamed Queens Park Road.
Queensbridge Road B13
Named after the road bridge over the Birmingham & Gloucester Railway completed 1840 at Alcester Road/ High Street which was named Queensbridge in honour of Victoria’s accession 1837.
Queensway B1/ B2/ B3/ B4/ B5/
In 1971 when Queen Elizabeth II opened the Inner Ring Road, then called the Ringway, she was invited to name as The Queensway the tunnel between Great Charles Street and Suffolk Street. After driving round the Ring Road she named all of it The Queensway: hence Suffolk Street Queensway, Paradise Circus Queensway, Great Charles Street Queensway, St Chad’s Circus Queensway, St Chads Queensway, Lancaster Circus Queensway, James Watt Queensway, Masshouse Circus Queensway, Moor Street Queensway, St Martins Circus Queensway, Smallbrook Queensway, Holloway Circus Queensway.
Queslett Road/ Queslett Road East B43/ B74
Derives from the name of a rural hamlet at the junction of Aldridge Road/ Beacon Road and Queslett Road. The name is Anglo-Saxon queest slade = wood pigeon, small (boggy) valley.
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March 12th, 2011 #25 bill.dargue's Avatar bill.dargue bill.dargue is offline
Default Re: History of Birmingham Street names
R - Streetnames
The Radleys/ Radley Walk B33
Named after Radley Moor which is recorded 1176 as Radelega = red fields, from the sandy soil. The moor was a strip of boggy land along Platt Brook which has still not been built on.
Raglan Road B12 and B21
Lord Raglan was Commander-in-Chief in the Crimean War 1854-1856.
Rea Street B5
This road alongside the River Rea was first called Bridge Lane, then Long Bridge Street until it took its present name c1800.
Rectory Road B31
Named after Rectory of Northfield church; the outhouses here are 16th-century timber-framed with an 18th century brick wing, and now converted into garages.
Rectory Road B75
Sutton Coldfield Rectory was a large Georgian-style building built 1710 by William Wilson for John Riland in extensive grounds; demolished 1936. Many old park trees still stand in Rectory Park.
Redhall Road B32
Is the former site of Redhall Grange, a farming estate run by lay brothers belonging to Halesowen Abbey.
Redhill Road B25 and B38
A topographical name based on the clay soil colour. In the Birmingham area there must have been many red fields, but this probably denotes the track up the red hill. Through-routes tried to find the best ways of travelling ie. across sand and gravel country, but this was not always possible. The clay on the red hill on the Coventry Road made this a notoriously slippery spot in wet weather. See also Coventry Road.
Reddicap Heath B75/ B76
In 1763 there was a farm here known as Mother Red-Cap Farm which may be the origin of the name; cap may indicate a look-out or beacon. The district centres on the junction of Reddicap Heath Road and Hollyfield Road. Reddicap Hill runs up from the valley of Plantsbrook (East Brook/ Ebrook) to Reddicap Heath.
Reddings Lane B13
originates from a fieldname: Anglo-Saxon hryding ie. cleared woodland, and medieval. When Moseley Hall was rebuilt 1796 a ha-ha 250m long was dug along the north side of the track north of which the land was known as the Riddings. The track became Reddings Road some 100 years later. Also The Reddings B47 Reddings Lane B11/ B28 (Yardley Tithe Map 1843 shows 3 fields of that name between Reddings Lane and Spring Road, although the lane itself was known as Scotteslone in 1360) and The Riddings B33 B76.
Redstone Farm Road B28
Formerly Langley Lane (see Langley Hall Road above), the present name is misplaced: the farm was on the Warwick Road on the Birmingham boundary.
Rickman Drive B15
Named in the early 1960s development after famous architect Thomas Rickman who designed nearby St Thomas's Church, Bath Row 1825. Born in Liverpool Rickman was based in Birmingham and is remembered for description of the phases of gothic architecture as well as being an early exponent of its reintroduction.
Robin Hood Lane B28
Robin Wood covered an area around Highfield Road between the Stratford Road and Trittiford. At some time in the 19th century the name was misread/ miswritten as Robin Hood. Robin Hood Crescent, Sherwood Road and Marion Way are 20th-century additions. See Six Ways.
Rocky Lane B6
A topographical name of the lane worn down into the sandstone of the Birmingham ridge, a holloway in solid rock.
Rocky Lane B42
A topographical name. Rock Farm lay on this road until the 1940s.
Rotton Park Road B16
Rotton was first recorded 1275; Parc de Rotton juxta (near) Birmingham 1307; Anglo-Saxon rot tun = cheerful farm. The medieval park was a private deer park of lords of the manor, the de Birminghams. Rotton Park Road is itself of medieval origin and may be earlier.
Royal Mail Street B1
Made during redevelopment in the late 1960s to give access to the new Central Post Office after abandoning the sorting facilities behind the Post Office in Victoria Square. The Sorting Office moved again 2000 to New Town Row, the former building being converted into expensive apartments and a prestigious shopping centre, The Mailbox.
Ryder Street B4
Named after Bishop Ryder of Lichfield who was very concerned with the poor of Birmingham. He instigated the building of a church in Gem Street now demolished, site under Aston University South side. He died before its completion and it was named in his honour 1828. Ryder Street was originally the site of The Butts. Edward IV made archery practice compulsory on Sundays and feast days to guard against the threat of invasion; all men aged 16-60 should own a longbow of their own height and each township was required to set up archery butts or targets; the statute was revived by Henry VIII 1543 for fear of French invasion but fell into abeyance in the 17th century. Every manor had a site where archery was practised. The Butts became Butts Lane by 1750, Tanter Butts by 1770 after the landowner,and by 1778 Tanter Street.
Ryland Street B16
John Ryland lived at the end of the 18th century at Easy Hill, later the home of John Baskerville. He married Martha whose maiden name is commemorated in nearby Ruston Street. Their philanthropic spinster grand-daughter Louisa Ann Ryland left her fortune and Sherbourne estate near Warwick to the son of the man she had loved and lost, provided he adopt her surname, which he did: Charles Alston Smith-Ryland. Charles is commemorated in Alston Street and names from the estate are to be found on former Ryland land in Ladywood: Sherborne Street, Coplow Street after Coplow Hill, Marroway Street after Marroway Farm, Northbrook Street after Northbrook Farm. Other members of the family are commemorated in Sparkbrook B11: Adria Road, Dennis Road, Doris Road, Esme Road, Evelyn Road, Ivor Road, Phipson Road.
S - Streetnames
Saints - The Saints are out of alphabetical order and are listed here first.
Streets named after church dedications tend to indicate 19th-century churches or later. Church Road tends to indicate a church of ancient foundation.
(For easier searching, apostrophes are omitted in names eg. Kings Heath, except in church names eg. St Martin’s.)
St Agnes Road B13
This stone church in early decorated gothic style was built on land donated by Birmingham solicitor, Francis Willmot and designed by William Davis after competition. It was intended to be built in three stages: chancel, transepts and part of the nave completed 1884; the rest of the nave and aisles 1893, tower 1932.
St Aidans Walk B10
St Aidan’s church was designed by F T Proud in perpendicular style in the Birmingham red-brick and terracotta style and opened 1894. It was designed as a high church, its first priest Rev James Agar-Ellis being a follower of the Oxford Movement.
St Andrews Road B9
This church was consecrated 1846, the fifth and last to be built by the Birmingham Church Building Society. Built in red sandstone in decorated gothic, it was considered an excellent example of its type. It was closed 1984 and subsequently demolished.
St Annes Court B7
St Anne’s on Cato Street was a gothic-style red-brick church designed by J G Dunne, consecrated 1869, closed 1951.
St Annes Court B13 Moseley
St Anne’s was paid for by Rebecca Anderton and built on land given by W F Taylor of Moseley Hall by Frederick Preedy; it was consecrated 1874. The church was badly damaged 1940 by a German bomb during World War 2 and for a number of years services were held in the parish hall. Further damage was caused by storms. The church was repaired 1946-1948 and reconsecrated 1948.
St Augustines Road B15
The building of the church of St Augustine of Hippo was initiated by pen manufacturer Joseph Gillott of Westbourne Road and designed by Birmingham architect J A Chatwin in late-13th-century geometric gothic style, this expensive church with much elaborate detail was consecrated 1868; tower 1876. It has 8 windows by the internationally famous Birmingham firm of Hardman.
St Benedicts Road B10
B10 Bordesley Green Hob Moor Road/ St Benedicts Road
Originally an iron mission church 1898 of St Oswald’s in Holman Road, the new building was built on land given by Charles Wriothesley Digby 1905 and consecrated 1910.
designed 1841 St Blaise Road B75
A 20th-century name commemorating the a chapel built by the Earls of Mercia dedicated to St Blaise at Sutton manor house on Manor Hill; This was effectively the parish church until Holy Trinity was built in the 13th century. St Blaise was demolished in the 15th century and stone was used by Bishop Vesey to build the bridges over the Tame at Water Orton and Curdworth.
St Chads Circus/ St Chads Queensway B4
St Chad’s was the first Roman Catholic cathedral to be built in England after the Reformation; it was by A W N Pugin, a prime mover in the Gothic Revival.
St Clements Road B7
St Clement’s church stood in Nechells Park Road and was consecrated 1859; it was designed by Birmingham architect J A Chatwin. Demolished c1978?.
St Edwards Road B29
St Edward’s Roman Catholic church 1902.
St Georges St B19
Commemorates St George’s church, architect Thomas Rickman. This important building was the first in Birmingham of the government’s Commissioners’ churches and one of the first real attempts anywhere in England at reviving gothic church architecture. It was demolished 1960, though Thomas Rickman’s tomb still stands in Great Hampton Street.
St James Place B7
St James the Less was founded 1789 in 18th-century house of Dr John Ash converted into chapel, opened 1791. The church was known as the Barrack Chapel - a regular Sunday service was held for troops from the nearby barracks. The building was severely damaged by a German bomb 1941 during World War 2, and demolished 1956.
St James Road B15
St James was built 1852 with building costs met by Lord Calthorpe. The church is now closed.
St James Road B21
St James was built 1840 on a site given by John Crockett of the New Inn to an early English gothic design and greatly enlarged 1895 by Birmingham architect J A Chatwin in 14th-century gothic decorated style.
St Johns Road B11
St John the Evangelist was designed by Martin & Chamberlain in early English gothic style in red brick with terracotta dressing with a buttressed tower. The church was enlarged 1895 and the spire added 1905. This was originally Sturge Street commemorating Joseph Sturge 1793-1859, a quaker industrialist known as the Apostle of Peace who campaigned against slavery and promoted Sunday schooling to teach children to read in order to be able to read the Bible.
St Johns Road B17
St John the Baptist was consecrated 1858 which was destroyed 1941 by a German bomb. In 1960 a new church was consecrated on Harborne High Street on the site of the old church hall, formerly the church school.
St Judes Passage B5
St Jude was built in brick 1847 by Orford & Nash in simple early English gothic, this was Birmingham’s last Commissioners’ church; it closed 1971 and was demolished.
St Lukes Road B5
St Luke’s was the third church funded by Birmingham Church Building Society designed by H Eginton unusually in Norman style was consecrated 1842, unsafe and demolished by 1899. The present gothic brick church was built 1903; the tower was never completed.
St Margarets Avenue B8
St Margaret’s church was built 1517 by Coventry merchant Thomas Boyd, in ruins by 1730 and being repaired; in the early 19th century it was being used as a barn. After a public appeal for funds the church was completely rebuilt in simple gothic style and rededicated 1834. It has a monument commemorating Birmingham’s first historian William Hutton d.1815 who lived nearby. This was formerly Black Pit Lane until the early 20th century. Also St Margarets Road and Church Walk.
St Marks Street B1
St Mark’s was the second church funded by Birmingham Church Building Society 1841 and an early design of Sir Gilbert Scott built in early English gothic style. Scott, later nationally famous as a neo-gothic builder and restorer disowned this early church as inaccurate gothic.
St Martin’s Circus Queensway B5
St Martin-in-the-Bull Ring, Birmingham Parish Church is ‘the Mother Church of Birmingham’. There is evidence of a 12th-century building, and, although the earliest recorded mention is 1263, it is almost certain that a small church existed here at the time of the Market Charter 1166. The earlier church was replaced by a building in local red sandstone at the end of 13th century but by 1690 the badly worn sandstone church except for the spire was encased in three layers of brick. In 1873 the whole building except tower and spire taken down and rebuilt by Birmingham architect J A Chatwin in stone in early 14th-century decorated gothic style.
St Marys Close B27
The street is a 20th-century development named after St Mary the Virgin which was designed in 13th-century gothic style and consecrated 1866. In 1940 the church was badly damaged at the crossing by a German bomb during World War 2 and restored during the 1950s.
St Marys Road B17
St Mary RC Church was built 1877. A new church was added to the old 1978.
St Marys Row B13
St Mary, Moseley Parish Church is first mentioned 1405 declaring the church a chapel-of-ease of Kings Norton church; the oldest surviving part of church is the tower 1514. The restoration was undertaken by Birmingham architect J A Chatwin 1876.
St Michaels Hill St Michaels Road B18
St Michael was consecrated 1855; it is built in stone in decorated gothic style; a stone spire was added 1868.
St Oswalds Road B10
Named from St Oswald’s Church of 1893.
St Pauls Road B12
St Paul's church was built 1852 and demolished c1980. A new church was built at the corner of Edward Road and Mary Street.
St Pauls Square B3
Built around St Paul’s church of 1777 said to be a smaller version of St Martin-in-the-Fields, London. The Colmore family gave the land and £1000 towards building costs for the church which was at the centre of their newly laid-out New Hall building estate; a new church encouraged prospective purchasers and lent impetus to sales of plots.
St Peters Road B20
St Peter is a decorated gothic style church, one of J A Chatwin’s last churches consecrated 1907, the year of Chatwin’s death, but never fully completed according to the original plan.
St Peters Close B28
St Peter’s was built as a temporary building 1922; a new reinforced concrete church opened 1964 based on an octagon with the main entrance through the west tower.
St Philips Place B3 named from St Philip’s Church, now Birmingham Cathedral designed by Thomas Archer in English baroque style 1711-25.
St Saviours Road B8
St Saviour’s was consecrated 1850; it is a large church with seats for 800 and set within a churchyard used for burials and now a conservation area. It was part-paid for by C B Adderley and Joseph Wright.
St Stephens Road B29
St Stephen was designed in stone by Martin & Chamberlain in decorated gothic style and consecrated 1870.
St Stephens Street B6
St Stephen was consecrated 1844. This is an early English gothic church by the nationally known architect, R C Carpenter. It was extensively rebuilt 1896 and 1910, closed 1950 and subsequently demolished.
St Thomas Road B23
St Thomas & St Edmund of Canterbury Roman Catholic Church, Erdington Abbey was designed 1848 by Charles Hansom in careful 14th-century decorated gothic style with elaborate internal detail and held to be a very fine example of the Gothic Revival.
Salisbury Road B13
Built c1896 and named after Lord Salisbury, Conservative prime minister 1885-1892, 1895-1902.
Saltley Viaduct B8
In 1895 Saltley Viaduct was built over the River Rea, the Birmingham & Warwick Junction Canal, and the Birmingham & Derby Junction Railway replacing the 1842 level crossing
Sampson Road B11
In 1661 Sampson Lort’s daughter married Charles Lloyd II of Llwydiarth, Montgomery; they moved to Birmingham 1698 to set up as iron merchants. His son Sampson Lloyd II established Lloyd's Bank 1765 in Dale End where he is commemorated by a Birmingham Civic Society blue plaque. It was he who bought Farm in Sampson Road, hence Farm Road. Dolobran Road recalls the original family house and estate, as does Montgomery Road. Braithwaite Road is named from Rachel Braithwaite who married Samuel Lloyd I 1791; Kendal Road the town where she was born. Samuel & Rachel’s son married George Braithwaite Lloyd married Mary Dearman hence Dearman Road.
Sandhill Farm Close B6
The area here used to be known as Sandhills; much of the sand was used for building Aston New Town from the 1850s. Sandhill farm stood opposite Alma Street at its junction with Newbury Road.
Recorded in 1390; there was a sandstone quarry here, much of the stone was later used in canal building.
Sandy Hill Road B28/ B90
Sandy Hill Farm is known from Georgian times, though it was probably older. The underlying soil here is glacial drift of sand and gravel.
Sarehole Road B28
The local area name Sarehole is believed to derive from Sare + Anglo-Saxon holm = flood meadow (medieval); the origin of the first part is unknown - Sare? Searu? a personal name?. Sarehole Road was extended north and south and Cole Valley Road and Bromyard Road created in 1918 as part of a plan to create a north-south road along River Cole from Yardley Wood to north of the Warwick Road; the scheme was never completed with Sarehole Road reaching only as far as the Stratford Road.
School Lane B33
Yardley Church School was built as a Sunday school 1836; the teacher’s house was built 1845 by which time the school had become a day school; it closed 1908 but the old school building still stands.
School Road B13
A Church of England school was founded 1828 at Moseley built on the site of a large 18th-century house previously used for The Woodroughs School, a private school for boys which was demolished to make way for it. School Road was formerly known as Lett Lane. Also Woodrough Drive, a late 20th-century development
School Road B28
This was formerly Chapel Lane named after Job Marston’s Chapel, now the Church of the Ascension 1703. Hall Green Yardley Charity School was founded 1721 and stood at Stratford Road/ School Road junction next to the Horse Shoes public house; it was a plain Georgian building in domestic style with a later extension which had gothic windows. This school closed 1898 though the building continued until 1910 as a private school, later a shop and a garage until its demolition in the 1970s. The children transferred to Hall Green Board School.
Scott Road B43
The manor of Great Barr passed to the Scott family 1618. They lived at (Great) Barr Hall north of Queslett Road until 1911 when it was sold to become St Margarets Hospital.
Selly Hill Road B29
Selly Hill is the location of a medieval moated site at Bournbrook Road/ Rookery Road which may indicate the original settlement site of Escelie, Anglo-Saxon scylf leage = shelf (of land) clearing which is listed as a manor in the Domesday Book. Selly Manor or Bournbrook Hall stood here, a 14th-century half-timbered manor house rebuilt/ extended in the late 15th century. It was re-erected on Bournville Green 1916 where it may be visited as a museum.
Selly Oak Road B30
Leads from Cotteridge to Selly Oak. The centre of the district of Selly Oak is around Oak Tree Lane/ Bristol Road where the ‘original’ oak was felled after it became dangerous 1909.
Selly Park Road B29
Selly Park Road recalls Selly Hall sold by John Rodway in 1864 to the Roman Catholic church as a convent.
Selly Wick Road B29
Derives either from Anglo-Saxon scylf leage = shelf (of land) clearing + wic = dairy farm, or from a very rare (for Birmingham) Latin survival vicus = settlement. In view of its proximity to Metchley Roman fort this is a possibility. Archaeological evidence from c2000 shows that outside the fort’s west gate (Vincent Drive c200m west of the roundabout) was indeed a vicus, a civilian settlement occupied by camp followers and traders. The buildings would have been timber-framed and linked by gravel paths within the settlement. Evidence has been unearthed of hearths and ovens. It is not certain, however, that the name derives from this settlement. On 19th-century maps Selly Wick is shown somewhat to the east of Metchley at Selly Park Road/ Selly Wick Road.
Serpentine Road B6
The name derives from the Serpentine Ground now partly covered the Aston Expressway. The Onion Fair was held here, so-named because the first onions of the season were sold here and people would buy other vegetables which would last the winter. The fair originated from Henry III’s charter 1250 granting William de Bermingham the right to hold a 4-day fair starting on Ascension eve. The fair originally held in the town centre was soon moved to Michaelmas, 29 September, and later to the last Saturday in September. By 1875 the town council felt the fun aspect of the fair had become too riotous and it was restricted to onions; the fun aspect transferred outside the council boundary to the Old Pleck (meaning open land), later the Serpentine Ground, a name borrowed 1820 from the lake in London’s Hyde Park. The fun fair lasted until the Expressway was built over the site in the 1960s.
Severn Street B1
Laid out c1792 it led to the Worcester Wharf (Gas Street Basin) of the Worcester & Birmingham Canal which gives access to the River Severn.
Seymour Street B5
Laid out 1851 is named after Edward Seymour, 12th Duke of Somerset.
Shadwell Street B4
This is an old name an derives from medieval shadwell = shallow/ boundary brook. Also nearby Bath Street: bath derives from Anglo-Saxon or Middle English meaning a spring with the implication that it is large enough to bathe in, (cold)bath is a word commonly used for stream.
Shaftmoor Lane B27/ B28
Shaftmoor Farm was a medieval moated site; by the 16th-century there was a large timber-framed building here with tall brick chimneys. Sold to Birmingham City Council 1925 for housing development.
Shard End Crescent B34
This post-World War 2 council estate was named after Shard End Farm which derived its name from le Sherd, Anglo-Saxon sceard = gap (in a hedge).
Shaw Hill Road B8
Shaw Hill may take its name from Anglo-Saxon sceaga ie. a little wood or from a family in the area in the early 18th century named after the little wood. Nos.22&24 Naseby Road are now industrial premises at the rear of St Mary & St John’s church hall and are the remains of the 3-storey Shaw Hill House which dates from before 1760. Grade II Listed BSMR
Shaws Passage B5
Came into being c1888 and took its name named from Henry & Frank Shaw’s Nail Manufactory.
Sheldon Hall Avenue B33
Sheldon Hall, now a pub and restaurant is an early 16th-century timber-framed manor house with brick wings added c1600 built on the site of its 12th-century predecessor and partly on its moat.
Shenley Lane B29
Derives from Shenley Fields, Anglo-Saxon scene leage = bright clearing + fields, one of the large common fields of Northfield.
Shireland Road B17
The boundary between Worcestershire and Staffordshire crossed Shireland Road immediately north of Selsey Road, following Shireland Brook which runs roughly from the Bear Inn at Bearwood Road/ Three Shires Oak Road to Cape Hill/ Grove Lane.) Three Shires Oak Road is so named because Halesowen and Warley were annexed as detached parts of Shropshire soon after 1086 by the Earl of Shrewsbury.)
Shirestone Road B33
Boulders were used to mark points along boundaries: the Shire Stone on Sedgemere Road marked a point on the boundary between Yardley in Worcestershire and Sheldon in Warwickshire. A line running north-south just east of Tile Cross Road was the shire boundary here. Tile Cross is a post-World War 2 development and it is not certain which shire stone the name of the road had in mind.
Shorters Avenue B14
Named 1951 at the request of Yardley Wood British Legion to commemorate World War 1 veteran Arthur Shorter who worked tirelessly to support ex-servicemen.
Showell Green Lane B11
Derives from Anglo-Saxon se' weles =seven wells or springs; Showell Green House was a large Georgian country residence north of Philip Sidney Road used as the Women’s Hospital annexe until c1970. The lane was improved during the final enclosures of Yardley manor c1840.
Six Ways Aston B6
The junction of Birchfield Road, Witton Road, Victoria Road, High Street Aston, Lozells Road dates from c1850.
Six Ways Nechells B7
The junction of Rocky Lane, Charles Arthur Street, Thimble Mill Lane, Nechells Park Road, Nechells Place and Bloomsbury Street, a name probably dating from the late 19th century.
Six Ways Erdington B23/ B24
The junction of Gravelly Hill North, Reservoir Road, Summer Road, High Street, Wood End Lane and Wood End Road was known as Erdington Six Ways after the cutting of the latter in the 1880s.
Six Ways B28
Now known as the Robin Hood Island, Six Weyes was recorded in 1382. The six ways are the Stratford Road (north and south), Robin Hood Lane, Shirley Road, Solihull Lane and ins Lane. See Robin Hood Lane.
Slade Lane B28
Slade derives from Anglo-Saxon slaed = a little valley. The lane crossed the River Cole here running down to the river south of and parallel to Yardley Wood Brook.
Slade Lane B75
Slade derives from Anglo-Saxon slaed = a little valley; the valley here is that of Colletts Brook. Slade Lane runs north-south along the west side of the brook. Slade Farm stands between the lane and the brook. Also B75 Slade Road.
Slade Road B23
Slade derives from Anglo-Saxon slaed = a little valley; Slade Waste is recorded 1620, Slade Common 1633. The valley between Over Witton (ie. Upper Witton) and Lower Witton was known as Witton Slade ie. Witton Valley.
Small Heath Bridge B10/ B11
Known as New Bridge when it opened in 1904, Small Heath Bridge crosses the Warwick & Birmingham Canal 1799 now the Grand Union and the Birmingham & Oxford Railway 1852 with a span of 200 metres joining Jenkins Street and Kendal Road. The bridge was opened by Lord Mayor Sir Hallewell Rogers.
Small Heath Highway B11
Built as a by-pass of the congested Coventry Road c1990. The Small Hethe is first recorded 1461 and was originally at the junction of Green Lane/ Coventry Road.
Smallbrook Queensway B5
Smalbroke/ Smallbrook Street dates from at least the 18th century and is named from landowning Smalbroke family who in turn took their name in the Middle Ages from a stream running through their lands in Yardley near Blakesley Hall. As Smallbrook Ringway it became the first part of the Inner Ring Road 1960. (See Queensway.)
Snow Hill Queensway B4
This road was originally topographically called was Sandy Lane but 1745 was changed to this London name, probably thought more appropriate for the building development on that side of the town. It became part of the Inner Ring Road in the late 1960s.
Soho Avenue Soho Road B18
The district of Soho and Soho Road were named after an inn on Soho Hill which was nicknamed after its inn sign which depicted a hunstman from whose mouth came the word Soho = Tally ho!. Soho Avenue was named from Soho House bought 1761 by industrialist Matthew Boulton rebuilt in Georgian style.
Speedwell Road B5/ B12
Speedwell Mill on the River Rea was making scythes in the 16th century, grinding blades in the 17th and 18th centuries and metal rolling in the 19th. It was demolished 1864. The streetname is 19th-century; note also Fitters Mill Close and Rolling Mill Close, 20th-century names, on the site of the millpool. Speedwell Windmill is recorded with Speedwell Watermill in 1810 when John Heeley was paying rent for both mills. The windmill appears on a map of 1814 but had gone by 1834. This road was part of a building development in the north-eastern corner of Edgbaston dating from c1870.
Springfield Street B18
Named after the late-18th-century mansion from the name of the mansion built by George Hollington Barker, a successful lawyer formerly of Old Square. Spring Hill and Springfield are topographical names. A holy well believed to have healing properties for eye problems emerged near Spring Hill Library but had disappeared by 1880 (late-20th-century Holy Well Close). Holy wells often predate Christianity and may well be of Celtic origin. They were often dedicated to a goddess to whom people made offerings thrown into the water. The Anglo-Saxon Christian church rededicated the wells in the name of a female Christian saint. The water, which was believed to have curative properties, was used for baptisms. Baptisms may have taken place in the well itself.
Springfield Road B13
A streetname derived from a fieldname: there was a medieval holy well/ spring said to be a cure for eye ailments between Springfield Road and the River Cole. See the previous entry.
Station Avenue B15 Hagley Road Station 1874 on the Harborne Railway closed 1934. There are barely visible remains of platforms on the Harborne Walkway established 1981.
Station Road B6 B14 B17 B21 B23 B27 B30 B31 B33
B6 Aston Station was built 1854 on the Birmingham-Liverpool Grand Junction railway. B14 Kings Heath Station was built on the Birmingham & Gloucester Railway 1840; it was called Moseley until 1867 when Moseley Station in Moseley opened. It closed 1941 with buildings surviving until the 1970s.
B17 Harborne Station, the terminus of the Harborne line, opened 1874, closed 1934. Frensham Way is built on the site.
B21 Handsworth & Smethwick Station was built 1854 Birmingham, Wolverhampton & Dudley Railway 1854; now Handsworth Booth Street on the Metro line.
B23 Erdington Station 1862 on the Sutton Coldfield Branch line.
B27 Acocks Green Station was an original station on the Birmingham & Oxford Railway 1852; it was demolished 1907 and replaced.
B30 Kings Norton Station 1849 on the Birmingham & Gloucester Railway; some original station buildings survive with the stationmaster’s cottage nearby.
B31 Northfield Station Station 1869 on the Birmingham & Gloucester Railway.
B33 Stechford Station was built 1844 on the London & Birmingham Railway of 1838. The spelling of Stechford derives from the way the railway company spelt the name of the station; previously it had been Stitchford.
B73 Station Road - Wylde Green Station on the Sutton Branch Line 1862.
Station Street B5 B73
B5 New Street Station was built 1852-4 on 3 hectares of slums by the London & North-Western Railway with access for the Midland Railway and was the terminus for Liverpool and London trains to replace the Curzon Street stations. Its original entrance was at the junction of Navigation Street/ Lower Temple Street. When built it had the biggest roof in the world.
B73 Sutton Coldfield Station was first 1862, rebuilt 1884; although altered the still exists. It was originally the terminus of the Sutton Coldfield Branch line.
Stechford Lane B8/ B33
The name Stechford derives from Anglo-Saxon styfic ford = stump ford (across the River Cole); it became Stechford when the railway company misspelt the station name 1844. The first reference to the ford is in 1249, however this river crossing forms part of an ancient ridgeway B13 Trittiford and is certainly of prehistoric origin. A footbridge, Stycheford Bridge is known 1497; the present Stechford Bridge was rebuilt jointly by Warwickshire, Worcestershire and Birmingham 1894.
Steelhouse Lane B4
Formerly Priors Conigree Lane named after the rabbit warren of St Thomas’s Priory which must have been near here. It was later Witealls Lane (See below Whittall Street.). The present name derives from Kettle's Steel Houses which refined Swedish steel throughout the 18th century; they stood on the site of the General (now the Children's) Hospital.. This street is one 18 listed in the 1553 Survey of Birmingham, though it is likely to be much older.
Stephenson Place Stephenson Street B2
From father and son George & Robert Stephenson who engineered the London & Birmingham Railway 1838. Hackney carriage fares were charged from the stand here, and it subsequently became regarded as the centre of Birmingham.
Stockfield Road B25/ B27
Stock field = stile field, medieval, signifying an enclosed field for livestock, hence the stile. Stock field was originally one of great open fields of Tenchley, originally known as Heyne Field ie. high field, and lay between Arden Road, Stockfield Road, Mansfield Road and Wynford Road.
Stone Yard B12
Walter Bannocks established his stonemasonry business here in the 1880s later moving to B91 Streetsbrook Road Solihull from where the firms still trades.
Stonehouse Lane B32
Stonehouse Farm, part built in Elizabethan brick; the older part in stone a metre thick, may have originally been a watchtower. Named a stone house because this was a fairly unusual building material in these timber-rich parts.
Stoney Lane B11/ B12
recorded in 1495 as Low Lane. A topographical name; the road developed from the earliest times on the gravel subsoil which gives a passable route away from the clay and the river silt but still following the valley of the Spark Brook. The name dates from medieval times, but could well be older. Stoney Lane has always marked the boundary between Yardley and Kings Norton.
Stoney Lane B25/ B33
Recorded as le Stoneystret 1352, it follows the course of Stich Brook (now wholly culverted) which rises near the Yew Tree and runs into the River Cole a mile to the north. The lane was improved as a thoroughfare as a result of the enclosure of Yardley Fields after 1843.
Stratford Road B11/ B28/ B90/ B94
The road from the Digbeth crossing of the River Rea to the crossing of the River Avon at Stratford is of great antiquity; it is first recorded in the Yardley Charter 972 as Leommannincg Weg = Leommann’s Folk’s Way; there must have been a settlement nearby. In 1350 it is recorded as the highway leading towards Heneleye and Bermyngham. It was later known as the London Road. With the Warwick Road it became Birmingham's first toll road as the Stratford Turnpike 1726. The name 'Stratford Road' became more usual after 1816 when Stratford became a canal terminus . As with all the former-turnpikes it tends still to be known as 'the' Stratford Road.
Streetly Lane B74 Streetly Road B23
The placename Streetley derives (as does Stirchley) from Anglo-Saxon strete leage = Roman road clearing (ie. Icknield Street).
Stuarts Road B33
This lane originated as a boundary track on the west of Stycheforde Felde. Named Stewards Lane after Margaret Steward who owned a long strip of land north-south west of the River Cole at Bachelors Farm in the mid-19th century.
Stud Lane B33
Named after Mr Graham’s Yardley Stud Farm for racehorses on Flaxley Road opposite, there in 1820, Stud Lane was Jones Lane in 1481.
Summer Row B3
Laid out by 1778, and named from 1782 from nearby Summerfields estate. This in turn took its name from the Summerfield in Lloyd & Summerfield’s Glassworks on Birmingham Heath. The name may be medieval and derive from pasture flooded in winter, used for summer grazing. Also Summerfield Road and Summerfield Crescent B16. Summerfield Park is the remains of the parkland surrounding Summerfield House.
Swanshurst Lane B13
Swanshurst Farm stood in what is now Swanshurst Park from medieval times; it was added to c1600 and a brick wing built in Stuart times. The house was demolished c1920 when Swanshurst Lane housing was about to be developed. Swanshurst is Anglo-Saxon swan (or swann) hyrst = swain, peasant (possibly swan) Hill.
Sycamore Road B21
The topographical name of a timber-framed farmhouse, Sycamore Farm. William Murdock moved from Soho Foundry 1817 to a new neo-classical house built for him here, named Sycamore Hill which became a children’s home in the early 20th century. It is now demolished.
T - Streetnames
Tamworth Road B74
The road from Sutton Coldfield to Bassetts Pole for Tamworth was turnpiked 1807. As with many former-turnpikes it tends still to be known as 'the' Tamworth Road.
Taunton Road B12
Named after J R C Taunton, the last chairman of the Balsall Heath Local Board of Health. The local health board was set up 1862 and effectively operated as a town council independently of KingsNorton until the district voted to amalgamate with Birmingham 1891.
Taylor Road B14
Commemorates lord of the manor, James Taylor who paid monies for charity to Yardley Parish in the late 18th-/ early 19th century.
Temple Ave B28
A summer house called The Temple stood in the grounds of Robin Hood House before it became a licensed public house.
Temple Row/ Temple Street B2
Laid out 1715 at the time St Philip’s was being built, these streets were named after the Temple, a late-17th-century wooden building on the future site of Temple Street; this was used by travelling bands of players and known as the Temple of Thespis (Thespis was an Ancient Greek playwright, hence the use of the term ‘thespians’ for actors. Temple Passage was made 1875.
Thimble Mill Lane B6
Named after the mill on Hockley Brook aka. Aston Brook which is recorded as Brodemore Mill 1532. The mill’s name derives from broad more, ie. a wide area of marshy land around the river. From 1758 the mill was known as Thimble Mill; it was demolished by 1918.
Three Shires Oak Road B67
The Three Shires 0ak once stood at the west end of the road named after it at the junction of the county boundaries of Warwickshire, Worcestershire and Staffordshire.
Tile Cross Road B33
A cross is shown in the 18th-century on Dugdale’s map at Tyle Cross or Tylers Cross; presumably tiles were made here using the plentiful local clay. This road and Mackadown Lane formed the boundary from Anglo-Saxon times of Rye-Eddish Field, one of Sheldon's great open fields.
Tinkers Farm Road B31
Tinkers Farm was probably a medieval moated site - a school now stands on the site.
Tollgate Drive B20
A late 20th-century name commemorating the tollgate here on the (Old) Walsall Turnpike; the gates were removed 1872 and the toll house subsequently used as a private girls’ school.
Tower Hill B42
Tower Hill is of unknown origin; it may be named after a watchtower, or windmill? although there is no evidence of a windmill here. The name derives from Tower Hill Farm on whose land an estate of private housing was c1950 and is recalled now only in the street name.
Treaford Lane B8
Treaford Hall was a large moated Georgian house on a medieval site demolished in the early 20th century to make way for housing. The Trafford family were living there 1485 when the house was known as Traffords Hall.
Trinity Hill B72
Holy Trinity, Sutton Parish Church was built in the 13th century; early 13th-century plinths and buttresses can be seen in the lower part of chancel east wall; the low broad tower was built in the 15th-century. Bishop Vesey added the north and south chapels, nave, aisles and porch c1533 and is buried here.
Trinity Road B6/ B20
Named after Holy Trinity church, designed by Birmingham architect J A Chatwin in rock-faced sandstone in early English gothic style and consecrated 1864.
Trittiford Road B13
Trittiford derives from Anglo-Saxon Titta’s or Tyda’s ford where Highfield Road crosses the River Cole. Sometimes known as Titterford, the road was renamed Trittiford by the corporation 1913 when the area round the pool was made into a public park. This is certainly an Anglo-Saxon, probably prehistoric crossing point being part of the ridgeway from here to Stechford, and the church way to Yardley. A road bridge was first built in the early 19th century; the ford alongside it subsequently disappeared under silt deposits. Earth ramps for a new bridge were made just before the outbreak of World War 2; the new Trittiford bridge was completed by 1990.
Tunnel Lane B30
Designed by Josiah Clowes the Stratford-upon-Avon Canal opened in 1816 after 15 years in the making. Brandwood Tunnel was one of the first sections of the waterway to be built c1800.
Turfpits Lane B23/ Turf Pitts Lane B75
Turf has the implication of good grassland; the former was in use by 1817, but is likely much older.
Turves Green B31
Of medieval origin meaning good-grass green.
Tyburn Road B23
c1730 taken from London's Tyburn, a place of execution from Norman times until the late 18th century. The implication is that this was also a place where a gallows stood, but of that there is no evidence.
Tyseley Lane B11
Tyseley Anglo-Saxon Tyssa’s leage = Tyssa’s forest clearing. This may be a rare and late pagan survival. Tiw’s clearing - Tiw was an Anglo-Saxon god of war.
U - Streetnames
Union Street B2
Known at one time as Withering Street after the great doctor, it was named from the Union Tavern and laid out along the route of Corbetts Alley which was itself named after Robert Corbett whose house stood on the High Street here 1728.
Unett Street B19
Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Unett fought in the Crimean War where he died 1855 leading his regiment at the Battle of Sebastopol. There is a marble obelisk to his memory in St Philip's churchyard.
V - Streetnames
Vaughton Street B12
A 19th-century development named after Vaughtons Hole, a large pool in the River Rea used by people from Birmingham for country outings. It was known a place for bathing, but also for vice and for suicides. Robert Darwin Vaughton, hence Darwin Street, married Mary Ann Dymoke, hence Dymoke Street and their son Robert Dymoke Vaughton married Emily Boultbee, hence Emily Street.
Vauxhall Road B7
Duddeston Hall Road is a 1960s development named after the medieval moated manor house on the future site of Hindlow Close which belonged to the Holte family. The grounds were used as pleasure gardens from c1750 and for various pursuits including bowling and cock-fighting, and named Vauxhall Gardens c1758 after the London pleasure gardens. Fairs, concerts, balloon ascents, fireworks and balls took place here. The hall was demolished c1781, the gardens closed 1850, the land sold to the Victoria Land Society for housing. The area was built up in the 19th century and rebuilt with a largely new road system in the 1960s.
Vesey Street B4
John Vesey was a trustee of Lench's Trust in the 16th century.
Viaduct Street B7
Vauxhall Viaduct 1837 took the Grand Junction Railway from Birmingham to Liverpool over the Rea Valley on 28 arches; another viaduct was built on top of it 1852 to raise it to the level of New Street Station.
Vicarage Road B14
Formerly Bleak Lane or Black Lane. These are two contrasting names: bleak implies poor quality land typical of heath (Kings Heath), whereas black was used of land that had been previously cultivated. The name must have been changed after the building of All Saints church 1859 at the corner of Kings Heath High Street.
Vicarage Road B25
Recorded 1346 as Bromilone, the present name derives from Yardley Vicarage 1960 which stood at Church Road/ Vicarage Road corner replacing an earlier 18th-century vicarage. It was demolished 2001, though the coach house and a contemporary cedar of Lebanon still survive.
Victoria Square B1
Previously known as Council House Square, it was renamed in honour of the queen 1901. The statue of Queen Victoria was carved in Sicilian marble by Thomas Brock paid for by Sir Henry Barber and unveiled by Lord Mayor Samuel Edwards 10 January 1901, 12 days before the queen's death. Also named after the queen are Victoria Avenue B21, Victoria Grove B18, Victoria Road B6 B17 B21 B23 B27 B30 B33, Victoria Street B9. There are various occasions which these streets may commemorate: Victoria’s accession to the throne was 1837, the silver jubilee 1862, golden jubilee 1887, diamond jubilee 1897; she married 1840 and died 1901.
Vincent Drive B15
Sir Harry Vincent 1874-1952 made his fortune making Blue Bird Toffee finally at Hunnington near Halesowen. He gave generously to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
Vittoria Street B1
Named after a victory won by the Duke of Wellington at Vittoria in Spain 1813 against Napoleon’s army. Nearby Graham Street is named after one of Wellington's generals who fought in the battle.
Vyse Street B6 B18
The Vyse family owned land in central Birmingham, in the Jewellery Quarter and elsewhere from the 19th century.
W - Streetnames
Wake Green Road B13
Wake Green may signify a green where wakes ie. medieval fairs were held, or derive from an Anglo-Saxon personal name, Waca. This lane was improved as a result of the final Yardley field enclosures c1840.
Walkers Heath Road B38
Walkers Heath recorded as le Walkerishethe from the family name 1314
Walmley Road B76
Walmley, first recorded as Warmelegh, Anglo-Saxon warm leage = warm forest clearing; the original site must have been sheltered and south-facing.
Walsall Road B42
The New Walsall Road Turnpike was created 1831 as a more direct route than the Old Walsall Road of 1727. As with all the former-turnpikes it tends still to be known as 'the' Walsall Road.
Ward End Park Road B8
Ward End Park 1903 was opened in the grounds of Ward End House. Ward is recorded as a family name 1315 and the name Ward End was subsequently used for part of Little Bromwich.
Warstock Lane B14
Named from Whorstock Farm. Warstock, le Harstok, derives from Anglo-Saxon har stocc = boundary post, where the manors of Kings Norton, Solihull and Yardley met.
Warstone Lane B18
From Anglo-Saxon har + stan = boundary stone (hoarstone), where the manors of Aston, Birmingham and Handsworth met; the hoarstone, a glacial erratic can still be seen in Warstone Cemetery. This was formerly known as Deadmans Lane.
Warwick Road B11/ B27/ B92/ B91/ B93
This ancient route to the county town from the Digbeth crossing of the River Rea was listed as the highway leading from Burmyngeham towards Solyhull in 1436, though it is likely much older. It became, with the Stratford Road, Birmingham's first toll road as the Warwick Turnpike 1726. As with all the former-turnpikes it tends still to be known as 'the' Warwick Road.
Wash Lane B25
A topographical name probably medieval or older, the lane ran along the edge of land that is washed over by water, the flood meadows of the River Cole; Anglo-Saxon gewaesc.
Washwood Heath Road B8
Washwood Heath, Wasshewode, Anglo-Saxon gewaesc wudu = ground that is washed over by water, ie. land on the flood plain + wood; the stream that runs through Ward End Park is called Wash Brook.
Water Street B3
Dating from 1813 is named after a stream known as Bourn Brook which ran alongside it draining the Carver and Colmore estates into the Great Pool north of Livery Street. The Bourn Brook derives its name from Anglo-Saxon bourn broc. Bourn is an early word also meaning brook which also has the implication of boundary.
Watery Lane B62
A topographical name; this lane led down to a ford through Bourn Brook to Highfield Lane. The land around the stream was certainly marshy especially in winter. The name of Moor Farm (Wilderness Farm) north of Clapgate Lane/ roughly opposite Bell Heath Way denotes boggy land.
Watery Lane Middleway B9
A topographical name suggesting that this route became a water course during the winter; the lane ran down from Camp Hill via Sandy Lane now Bordesley Middleway to the ford across the River Rea at B4 Lawley Middleway/ Montague Street. It was renamed Middleway as part of the Middle Ring Road built round the city from the 1970s to the 1990s.
Waterloo Road B25
Named after Waterloo Farm built in the 1820s between Hilderstone Road and Forest Road, its name derived from the Duke of Wellington's victory at the Battle of Waterloo 1815.
Waterloo Street B2
Was laid out c1800 with Bennetts Hill and commemorates the Duke of Wellington's victory at the Battle of Waterloo 1815.
Watermill Close B17
A late 20th-century name commemorating Harborne Mill on Bourn Brook which stood here in the 16th century.
Waterworks Road B6
Aston Reservoir 1831 15 hectares (alongside Spaghetti junction), now Salford Reservoir, introduced the beginnings of a piped water supply for Birmingham via the gothic-style Aston pumping station which stood between the Birmingham-Fazeley Canal and the Lichfield Road opposite B6 Waterworks Road. Water was soon pumped up to the reservoir at Monument Lane (Monument Road) between B16 Edgbaston/ Ladywood Waterworks Road and Reservoir Road from where it was gravity fed to most of Birmingham borough and beyond.
Waterworks Road B16
The tall gothic engine house, boiler house and italianate gothic chimney of Edgbaston pumping station was designed by Martin & Chamberlain; the site also had a deep well from which water was pumped by steam power.
Weaman Street B4
Named after the wealthy Weaman family who developed the estate. Mary Weaman paid for St Mary’s church to be built after which St Marys Row is named, as part of the attraction of the housing development. Built 1774 in neo-classical style, its octagonal shape was considered ideal for preaching and held 1700 people. Closed 1925 and subsequently demolished, the site is now under the St Chads Queensway/ Dental Hospital site.
Webb Lane B28
Named after the family at Little Sarehole on the west bank of the River Cole, Webb Lane crossed the river by a ford. Due to the building of the North Warwickshire Railway embankment 1906 Webb Lane was joined with Robin Hood Lane so that a single arch could be made over a new central lane, instead of two arches close together. A few years later a wide road bridge replaced both the nearby fords, joining the new lane to the Old Wake Green Road.
Well Street B5
In 1854 a 370m borehole was sunk in Well Lane off Digbeth to supply 72,000 gallons/ c360 000 litres a day from an artesian well. The water was carried in carts around the town from this and other privately-owned wells nearby.
Weoley Castle Road B29
Weoley Castle was occupied from Anglo-Saxon times and rebuilt c1100-1200; when it burnt down, it was rebuilt, moated and fortified 1264 by Roger de Somery of Dudley Castle. Everything was demolished c1380 and rebuilt again partly in stone. Weoley Castle was subsequently altered and added to over the years. For hundreds of years this was the manor house of Northfield. It had fallen into ruins by the 17th century. The placename Weoley derives from Anglo-Saxon weoh leage = heathen temple clearing - and is a rare reference to paganism. The housing estate and this street name date from just before World War 2.
Westley Road B27
An 18th-century corruption of Whistley Brook or Whisley Brook, nearby.
Wharf Road B30
Refers to the Worcester & Birmingham Canal 1815 wharf near Kings Norton Junction with the Stratford Canal.
Wharf Street B6
On the Birmingham & Fazeley canal 1789.
Wharfdale Road B11
Originally Wharf Lane as the Warwick & Birmingham Canal 1799 (now the Grand Union Canal) was being built, but after 1795 Wharfdale Road. Also Wharf Road.
Wheeleys Lane B15
From Wheeleys Farm; the Wheeleys were a family of some standing during the 18th century.
Whittall Street B4
Formerly Catherine Street, the land here was owned by Lench’s Trust and leased to Edward Whittall in the early 17th century.
Whitehouse Common Road B75
A self-explanatory name in use by 1725.
Wiggins Hill Road B76
Wiggins Hill Farm as it now stands is 17th-century, but the name was recorded at Domesday as Wicgingahyll, from Anglo-Saxon Wicga’s, ing = people/ family, hyll = Hill.
Windmill Road B28
Bach Mill was a wooden post windmill belonging to Colebrook Priory. It was replaced by 1644 by a brick mill in Coton Grove which ground corn until c1890.
Windmill Street B1
Named after the 18th-century brick windmill at the top of Holloway Head, Holloway Hill Windmill or Chapmans Windmill which replaced an earlier wooden mill. It was demolished 1973. Also Chapmans Passage.
Winson Green Road B18
Winson Green, Wynesdon recorded 1327, Anglo-Saxon Wine’s dun = Wine’s Hill; may derive from winn dun = meadow Hill.
Wishaw Lane B76 B78
The placename is first recorded as Witscaga, Anglo-Saxon wiht sceaga = curved thicket/ small wood.
Witton Road B6
Witton, the placename first recorded as Witone, derives from Anglo-Saxon wic tun = dairy farm. The Witton crossing of the River Tame is recorded as ‘the foul ford’ 1460, though it probably dates from earliest times; presumably it was a difficult one on clay and a crossing of necessity not preference. There was a timber bridge here from 1358. Witton Road was a churchway to Aston maintained by the parishioners, Erdington and Witton being part of Aston parish until the 19th century. Witton Lane of equal antiquity runs via Aston Lane to a better river crossing on the Lichfield Road at Salford Bridge.
Wood End Lane/ Wood End Road B24
Pype Hall (not to be confused with Pype Hayes Hall) was a medieval moated manor house (sub-manor of Erdington) rebuilt outside the moat by Humphrey Holden 1543. It stood at the south end of Wood End Lane. It was altered and enlarged 1622 as a large 6-gabled timber-framed building, known as Wood End House by the 19th century and demolished 1932. Although Wood End Lane is probably an old farm track, Wood End Road was cut for prospective housing development with streets up to Church Road.
Woodbridge Road B13
This road was formerly Blayney Street, probably named from a local family. Woodbridge Road was named after the wooden bridge built across railway cutting of the Birmingham & Gloucester Railway completed 1840. The wooden bridge lasted until 1908.
Woodbrooke Road B30
One of the roads in the original development of Bournville Village 1900 named after the stream, Wood Brook which runs from Weoley Castle north of Middle Park Road and into The Bourn west of Woodbrooke Road.
Woodgate Drive B32
From the placename Woodgate Valley used of the housing estate developed c1980. This is probably a medieval name: the valley is that of the Bournbrook; what the significance of the gate in the wood is not known; gate may derive from the medieval word meaning road.
Woodlands Road B11
Woodlands Farm stood half-way along Woodlands Road on the north side until its demolition c1900.
Worcester Street B2
Now a tiny street at the foot of the Rotunda, it was widened by the Streets Commissioners from a number of alleys c1820 and was the beginning of the road to Worcester via Holloway Head.
Wordsworth Road B10
Named c1876 after Rev Christopher Wordsworth who owned land west of Wordsworth Road in the mid-19th century. Byron Road and Tennyson Road were named somewhat later to continue the believed literary theme; also Waverley Road after Sir Walter Scott’s novel. Keats Avenue and Byron Close are late 20th-century additions. The roundabout on Golden Hillock Road/ Small Heath Highway has been known as Poets’ Corner from c1990; the real Poets’ Corner is in Westminster Abbey.
Worlds End Lane B32
Worlds End denotes land at the edge of normal settlement.
Wright Road B8
Named after Joseph Wright who founded the Metropolitan-Cammell Carriage & Waggon Company near here 1845.
Wright Street B10
Commemorates John Skirrow Wright 1822-1880, industrialist, philanthropist, social reformer who died at a council meeting 1880. His statue stands in the Council House.
Wychall Lane B38
Wychall Farm was originally a medieval moated timber-framed farm rebuilt in brick at a later date, demolished after 1952 for housing and St Thomas Aquinas School. Wylde Green Road B72/ B76
From the placename: wylde may derive from wild meaning uncultivated, or possibly from an Anglo-Saxon word meaning machinery of some kind, a windmill?
X There are no Birmingham Xs . . .
Y - Streetnames
Yardley Road B25
leading to Yardley which originated as the eastern boundary track around Tenchley’s Heynefield (high field), later known as Stockfield. It became the main road as a result of the enclosures of the open fields c1850,
Yardley Fields Road B33
Originally Rotyford Lane, ie. slippery ford, it is named after medieval Yardley’s open fields, Stichford Field and Church Field which lay west of Yardley village down to the River Cole and north to Flaxley Road. The lane was improved as a result of the enclosure of Yardley Fields after 1843. Yardley is first recorded as Gyrdleahe, Anglo-Saxon gyrd leage; leage = clearing/ fields; gyrd may mean stick or twig, it also has the meaning of yard as a measure of area (at one time a yard denoted ¼ acre); the implication may be that this was small clearing.
Yardley Green Road B9
known from at least 1383 leading to the green ie. the unenclosed grazing land of Yardley.
Yardley Wood Road B13
leading from Stoney Lane (formerly Wildays Lane), refers to the woodland belonging to Yardley at the extreme south end of the manor. This was a drovers' track from at least the Middle Ages if not earlier linking all the commons from Showell Green to Yardley and Kings Norton Woods and Berry Mound.
York Street B17
was named by builder Josiah Bull York as the first housing estate development in Harborne c1850. Similarly Bull Street and Josiah Street later renamed South Street.
Z . . . and no Birmingham Zs.