HISTORY OF TIPTON

Tipton was mentioned in the Domesday survey of 1086 as TIBINTONE, being held by William with land for five ploughs.

The name later became TIBBINGTON and eventually TIPTON, however between 1151 and 1723 there appear 22 variations of the spelling.  In 1294 it was referred to as Stybington.

The ancient parish church of Tipton is St John’s (originally St Martin’s) in Upper Church Lane which is thought to date from the 13th or 14th century but was completely rebuilt in the 17th and 19th centuries. Its tower has a sundial which is inscribed ‘This steeple was built anno domini 1683. John Nightingale, William Clare, Church Wardens'.  The church was closed in 1794 because of damage caused by a storm and mining subsidence and a new church of St Martin was erected in Lower Church Lane in 1797. The nave of the old church was rebuilt in 1854 and rededicated to St John.

The new St Martin’s church was designed by John Keyte of Kidderminster and was completed at a cost of £1,522 with an additional £100  paid for the building of a wall round the churchyard. By 1812 galleries had been added around three sides of the church at a further cost of £383. St Martin’s was affectionately known as the Pepperbox due to the distinctive domed top to its tower but this was removed when the tower was rebuilt in 1963. The church was declared redundant in 1988 but has survived thanks to a residential conversion that was featured on TV’s Grand Designs.

During the Civil War, Edward Dudley of Tipton Green Hall lent money to advance the Parliamentary cause and received a commission to raise troops in Staffordshire.  In June 1644 the Parliamentary forces attacked Dudley Castle and their interception of Royalist reinforcements resulted in the Battle of Tipton Green.      

In 1712 the world’s first successful steam pumping engine was erected at the Coneygree Coalworks by Thomas Newcomen. A full sized replica of the engine has been built nearby at the Black Country Museum. The first commercial steam engine designed by James Watt was purchased by Messrs Bentley and Co. and put to work pumping water from their Bloomfield Colliery in 1776. 

Another Watt engine associated with Tipton is the 1779 Smethwick engine which was relocated to the Birmingham Canal Navigation workshops at Ocker Hill in 1897. On the closure of the depot in 1959 it was presented to the Birmingham Museum of Science and Industry and can now be seen at the Thinktank  in Birmingham where it is the world’s oldest working steam engine.

The Birmingham Canal arrived in Tipton in 1770 and over the next 50 years the town became the centre of a dense network  with over 13 miles of navigable waterways within its boundaries. This led to Tipton being known as the ‘Venice of the Midlands’. At the nearest point to Dudley on the original Birmingham canal, warehouses and wharves sprung up and became known as Dudley's port; later becoming Dudley Port. 

Around 1780, James Keir, the ‘Mighty Chemist’ and member of the Lunar Society established a chemical  works at Bloomfield where he made alkali, soap and lead compounds for the Stourbridge glass industry. He also invented a gold coloured metal, a compound of copper, zinc and iron for making metal sashes for windows, some of which were installed in Windsor Castle. Factory Road, which was originally Soap Factory Road, is a reminder of this venture.

John Wesley founded the first 'Wesleyan Preaching House' in Staffordshire at Tipton Green in 1786. A larger chapel was built in 1809 but this suffered from mining subsidence and a new structure, Park Lane Chapel was built at a cost of £5,874 3s 0d, opening  in 1866. This became known as the cathedral of Tipton Methodism due to its distinctive 120 feet high spire, but was demolished and replaced with a smaller modern chapel in 1978. 

In 1792 the partnership of Dixon, Amphlett and Bedford purchased the Horseley estate and paved the way for the establishment of the Horseley Coal and Iron Company which grew into one of Tipton’s most innovative and famous engineering firms.

In 1798 the historian Stebbing Shaw published the History and Antiquities of Staffordshire containing the earliest detailed description of Tipton. (see appendix 1)

In the 18th and 19th centuries the coal and ironstone below the surface of Tipton was exploited and many collieries and ironworks appeared.  Pigot’s Directory of Staffordshire for 1828-29 described the ironworks as being ‘upon a most extensive scale, some of the blast furnaces consuming upwards of 600 tons of coal per week. The coal mines are said to be inexhaustible, the strata of this valuable combustible averaging thirty feet in thickness……The value of some of the land is so great, from its internal treasures, that some have been stated to be let at the high rent of £1000 per acre.’

On August 4th 1819, a vestry meeting was held for the purpose of enforcing a strict and more orderly observance of the Sabbath.  Four special constables were appointed.

In 1822 the world's first iron steamship the 'Aaron Manby' was constructed at the Horseley Ironworks.  The ship crossed the Channel and then plied along the River Seine from Paris to Le Havre for about 30 years. Manby Street perpetuates its memory.

The Tipton ironmaster Joseph Hall (1789-1862) invented a new method of making wrought iron known as pig boiling or wet puddling at his Bloomfield Ironworks in the 1830s which was to revolutionise ironmaking throughout the world. Sir Alfred Hickman, who became known as the 'Iron King of the Midlands' was born in Tipton in 1830.

In the 19th century the health and sanitary conditions in Tipton were dreadful.  The town was hit by the great Cholera epidemic in 1832 when there were 1,452 cases of the disease, resulting in 404 deaths.

St Paul’s Church, Owen Street, was opened in 1839.

In 1849 a disaster struck at the Blue Fly Pit at Dudley Port in which 16 men and boys were killed.

St Mark’s Church, Ocker Hill was consecrated on 13th November 1849.

William Perry (1820-1879) the prize fighter, better known as the 'Tipton Slasher’, became champion of England in 1850.  The Fountain Inn, Owen Street, was once used as his headquarters, a fact now marked by a plaque on the building and a statue in nearby Coronation Gardens.

The first railway to be built through Tipton was the South Staffordshire Railway from Walsall to Dudley which was opened on 1st May 1850 and had stations at Great Bridge and Dudley Port.

On 1st July 1852 the Stour Valley Railway from Wolverhampton to Birmingham was opened with stations at Tipton (Owen Street) and Dudley Port (High Level).

In January 1854 the Sedgley  Loop railway was opened which allowed trains from Dudley to run into the High Level station at Dudley Port to connect with all the main line services. Until 1957 the Dudley Dodger was one of the most intensively worked pull and push services in the country with about 70 trains in each direction.

In April 1854 the Oxford Worcester and Wolverhampton Railway was opened with a station at Tipton (Five Ways).

The affairs of Tipton were once run by the Overseers who held meetings in the Church Vestry, but on 21st May 1855, Tipton was constituted a district for the purpose of the Public Health Act 1848.  The Tipton Local Board of Health consisting of 24 persons was elected on 28 June 1855.  This body, the forerunner of the local council, held its first meeting at the Tipton Workhouse in September 1855 with the Reverend William Kerr as its first Chairman.  It appointed five officers – a Clerk, Medical Officer of Health, Surveyor, Collector and an Inspector of Nuisances.

The railway line from Bloomfield Junction to Wednesbury via Princes End and Ocker Hill was opened by the London and North Western Railway in September 1863.

In 1864 the South Staffordshire Waterworks Company opened their Coneygre pumping station and reservoir.

The Tipton School Board was set up in 1871 under the Elementary Education Act 1870.  The Board held its first meeting in Church Lane when members elected William Hipkins as Chairman and Reverend S T Tozer as acting Honorary Secretary.  Schools erected by the Board were Great Bridge (1874), Dudley Port (1877), Burnt Tree (1878), Tipton Green (1878), Bloomfield (1890), Ocker Hill (1899) and Park Lane (1903).  The School board was superseded by the Council's Education committee.

In 1872 a horse drawn tram system was opened from Hockley Brook to Dudley Port, extending into Birmingham by the following year, but was closed due to poor receipts in 1874. Steam powered trams commenced operation from Birmingham to Dudley via Dudley Port and Burnt Tree in1885 and the route was electrified in 1903. The trams on this 74 service ran for the last time on 1st April  1939, to be replaced by motor buses run jointly by Birmingham and West Bromwich Corporations.

Tipton Cemetery was opened in March 1873 by the Bishop of Lichfield, Dr Maclagan.

St Matthew’s Church, Dudley Road, was opened in 1876.

On 13 December 1876, the foundation stone of the new Public Offices in Owen Street was laid by James Whitehouse, the Chairman of the Tipton Local Board of Health.  The office buildings were erected at a cost of £4,000.  The buildings later became part of the fire station and were demolished in 1972.

St Michael’s Church, Tividale, opened in 1878.

The Tipton Gasworks were opened in 1882 in Workhouse Lane. The Workhouse stood near the site of the present fire station and gave its name to the lane.  The name was later changed to Alexandra road to commemorate the Queen Alexandra, wife of Edward VII.

A steam tram service from Wednesbury to Dudley via Princes End commenced on 21st January 1884. The line was electrified in 1907 but the trams were replaced by Midland Red buses in March 1930.

In 1885 steam trams began a through service from Birmingham to Dudley via Tividale. Electrification took place in 1904 and the last trams ran on the 87 route on 30th September 1939 to be replaced by Midland  Red buses.

In 1892 Charles Palethorpe purchased the disused Whitehouse Brothers’ brewery in Park Lane West in order to expand his sausage and pork pie manufacture then based in Dudley. By 1896 he could boast that his ‘model sausage factory’ was the largest sausage producer in the world. Palethorpes became a Tipton institution but the factory closed in 1968 when the firm relocated to Market Drayton, Shropshire.

The Tipton Local Board of Health was superseded in 1894 by the Tipton Urban District Council, which held its first meeting on 8 January 1895 under the chairmanship of Daniel Hipkins.

The population growth of Tipton in the 19th century is shown in the census returns as follows:

1801 4,280
1811 8,407
  1821 11,546
  1831 14,952
  1841 18,891
  1851 24,853
  1861 28,870
  1871 29,445
  1881 30,013

Ocker Hill power station was opened in 1902 by the Midland Electric Corporation for Power Distribution Ltd.

On 29th July 1901, Victoria Park was opened by the Right Honourable, The Earl of Dartmouth.  This was preceded by a procession through the streets of the town by members of local organizations and civic dignitaries.

The Central Library in Victoria road was opened on 30th May 1906 by Councillor W W Doughty.
Toll End Library was opened on 12 August 1907 by Joseph Powell Esq. Both libraries were paid for by the philanthropist Andrew Carnegie.

In 1908, Tipton pawnbroker, Hugh Lewis left his entire estate of £80,000 to the Guest Hospital, Dudley.

In 1909 Princess Marie Louise of Schleswig Holstein visited Tipton to open a Nurses Home in Lower Church Lane. 

Tipton Harriers were formed in September 1910 and used the brewhouse at the rear of the Waterloo Inn in Waterloo Street as changing rooms.

On 31st January 1916 Tipton was attacked by German Zeppelins with Union Street taking the brunt. The bombing raid killed 15 people and a number were injured.

The Cenotaph on Victoria Park, erected to commemorate those Tiptonians who fell in the Great War of 1914-1918, was unveiled on 24th August 1921 by the Marquis of Cambridge.  A Roll of Honour was unveiled in the Central Library on 11th November 1922 by Mrs Naylor.

On 6 March 1922, 19 girls aged between 13 and 15 years were killed as a result of an explosion which occurred whilst they were engaged in breaking up miniature rifle cartridges at a Dudley Port factory.  A public subscription raised £4754.  Several of the girls were buried in a mass grave in Tipton Cemetery and a monument was raised to them by the people of the town. 

Tipton Central Schools in Alexandra Road were opened on 13th October 1927 by Councillor Simeon Webb JP.  In 1946 Grammar School status was attained but in 1968 the school became a comprehensive and was renamed Alexandra High School.

The Birmingham to Wolverhampton New Road was opened on 2nd November 1927 by HRH The Prince of Wales.  He was received at Tipton by the Chairman of the Council, Councillor W H Powis JP and several councillors and officials were presented.

The Public Baths in Queens Road were opened  on 25th January 1933 by Councillor J R Baker.
Manor Road Schools were opened in 1933 by Councillor T E Salter.  They were of wooden construction and were to be of a temporary nature but were in use until the 1990s.

The Council headquarters and Council Chamber were moved in 1935 from Owen Street to an office block purchased from Bean Cars Ltd in Sedgley Road West. Known as the Municipal Buildings, these were opened by the Right Honourable Arthur Greenwood MP on 7th March 1935.

Jubilee Park, originally known as Ocker Hill Park, was opened on 13th April 1935 by Councillor   
A P Welch, JP, CC.

On 23rd June 1936 Tipton Urban District Council passed a resolution to apply for the grant of a Charter of Incorporation, to allow Tipton to become a Municipal Borough.

The Central Clinic in Horseley Road was opened on 30th July 1936 by Councillor W E Hampton.

Tipton Urban District Council was proud of its council housing programme and on 21 December 1936 the 2000th council house was opened by Councillor A Jones.  The foundation stone of the 2,500th was laid by Councillor C W Grove.  Both houses were on the Tibbington estate.

In 1937 the world speed record breaking car Thunderbolt was built at Beans Industries in Hurst Lane. The car was designed and driven by Captain George Eyston who broke Sir Malcolm Campbell’s 1935 world record of 301.13 mph on 19th November 1937 at Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, USA. On 27th August 1938 Thunderbolt raised the speed to 345.5mph only to be outdone by John Cobb in his Railton car on 15th September with 350.2mph. However on the very next day Eyston took the world record again with 357.5mph and held it for almost a year.

The extension to the cemetery in Alexandra Road was opened on 28th March 1938 by Councillor Mrs Lucy Bagnall.

A Charter of Incorporation was granted to Tipton on 10th September 1938 making it a Municipal Borough.  On 1st October of that year the Charter of Incorporation was presented to the Charter Mayor, Councillor A F Welch JP, by the Lord Lieutenant of the County of Stafford, the Earl of Harrowby.  The first meeting of the Tipton Borough Council took place on 9th November 1938.  

Locano Road Junior and Infants School was opened on 27th October 1938 by Councillor A Parker JP and Councillor W J W George.

In November 1940 an air raid on Bloomfield destroyed the Star Hotel, killing one person.

In the early hours of 17th May 1941 an air raid destroyed the Tipton Tavern and New Road Methodist Church, Great Bridge, killing six people.

In 1947 two concrete cooling towers were constructed at Ocker Hill power station with a third being added in 1956.

The famous marathon runner, Jack Holden of Tipton Harriers, was honoured in 1952 by gardens, bearing his name, being laid out in Queens Road.  These were opened on 23rd July of that year by the Mayor of Tipton, Alderman A E Bolton.

The Coronation Gardens in High Street were opened in June 1953.

Tipton's first multi-storey block of flats 'Coronation House' at the corner of High Street and Bell Street was opened in 1959 by Alderman A E Bolton.

Tipton (Five Ways) station closed on 30th July 1962. The line closed completely in April 1968.

In 1962 major extensions were opened at Tipton Grammar School comprising of new school hall, kitchen, dining room, swimming baths, gymnasium, science block and practical block.

Tipton’s last cinema, the Alhambra in Dudley Port, closed on 3rd August 1963.

Dudley Port Low Level station closed on 6th July 1964. 

The new Tipton gasworks went into production in 1965, making gas from naphtha fuel. The advent of natural gas from the North Sea resulted in its closure in 1975.

In 1966 Tipton lost its Borough status when it was absorbed, together with Wednesbury Borough, into an enlarged West Bromwich County Borough as part of the nationwide reorganization of Local Government. 

The railway through Tipton (Owen Street) and Dudley Port was electrified in 1967, with the new services coming into operation on 6th March 1967.

Tipton’s new fire station was opened in 1971 at the junction of Alexandra Road and Upper Church Lane.

On 4th June 1971 HRH The Duke of Edinburgh opened the new headquarters of the Tipton Sports Union Trust at Gospel Oak.

In 1974 a further restructuring of Local Government saw West Bromwich and Warley County Boroughs amalgamating to form the Metropolitan Borough of Sandwell within a newly created West Midlands County Council.

The coal fired power station at Ocker Hill closed in 1977.

Between 1980 and 1983 the south side of Owen Street was redeveloped to provide 104 houses and flats, 15 shops, a bank, a Co-op supermarket and new parking facilities.

Ocker Hill cooling towers were demolished in 1985.

In 1988 the railway bridge in Bloomfield Road was refurbished with decorative metal artwork on a musical theme.
In the summer of 1990 the railway and canal bridges at Dudley Port were refurbished with decorative metal artwork on a transport theme.

In August 1992 the Tipton and Coseley Building Society opened its new offices in Owen Street.

In March 1993 the Tipton Challenge Partnership was established by the government to regenerate  Tipton. In its five years of existence the Partnership claimed to have brought £173 million of investment into the town.

The South Staffordshire Railway through Dudley Port Low Level and Great Bridge was closed in March 1993. Its route is earmarked for the second phase of the Midland Metro from Wednesbury to Merry Hill.

The statue of William Perry, the Tipton Slasher, was unveiled in Coronation Gardens on 3rd May 1993 by the Mayor of Sandwell, Councillor John Sullivan.

St Paul’s Church of England Primary School was relocated from Wood Street to a new building in Robert Road during 1994.

On 24th June 1994 HM The Queen visited Tipton to view the work of the Tipton Challenge Partnership as part of a wider tour of the Black Country. This was the first visit of a reigning monarch to the town.

In 1995 the Victoria Infants School was opened on the site of the old Park Lane Secondary School in Silvertrees Road. (Formerly Birch Street)

The Black Country New Road opened in November 1995 providing a direct link between Great Bridge and Wednesbury.

Tipton Heritage Centre, situated in the new St Paul’s Community Centre, opened in the summer of 1997 with John Brimble as Tipton Heritage Officer.

The Asda supermarket in Great Bridge was opened in May 1998 on the site of the Wellington Tube Works.

On 12th June 1998 the Tipton Sports Academy was opened by the Deputy Prime Minister, John Prescott.

The Neptune Health Centre was opened on 12th July 1999 by The Princess Royal.

Between 1999 and 2000 the  Co-op supermarket in Owen Street and the old Lister building in Stockdale Parade, (formerly Union Street) were redeveloped to provide a larger supermarket and ten new shops with offices over. On completion, the pedestrian area was renamed Unity Walk.

The new Tipton Library in Unity Walk was opened on 29th November 2000 by the Mayor of Sandwell, Councillor Mrs Jean Marson.

The new Great Bridge Primary School was opened on 1st December 2005 by Skills Minister Phil Hope.

The old Tipton Library was reopened on 30th May 2006 as the Tipton Carnegie Centre by Councillor Syeda Khatun MBE on the occasion of the building’s centenary.

In September 2006 the Tipton Heritage Centre was reopened in a new location in Tipton Library and later renamed the Tipton Community Museum.

On 4th November 2008 HRH The Duke of Edinburgh opened the new Summerhill Primary School, Upper Church Lane and visited the RSA Academy, the successor to Willingsworth High School.

The new Owen Street Relief Road, known locally as the Tipton Tunnel, was opened on 18th January 2010 by Councillor M Hussain, Deputy Leader of Sandwell MBC.

On 22nd November 2010 HRH The Duke of Edinburgh opened the RSA Academy.



APPENDIX ONE

AN ACCOUNT OF TIPTON FROM THE HISTORY AND ANTIQUITIES OF THE COUNTY OF STAFFORD BY STEBBING SHAW, 1798.

Tipton, formerly written Tibbington, is the next parish in this hundred, about three miles west of the last described.  It is an extensive tract of flat country, bounded on the South by the lofty Rowley hills, and on the South-west by the lime-stone rock on which the magnificent ruins of Dudley castle rear their lofty towers; yet it appears not, though so nearly situated, ever to have been subject to the lords of that great barony; for, at the General Survey recorded in Domesday, one William held Tibintone of the bishop of Lichfield, then containing five carucates (1).  In 1151 Pope Eugenius III confirmed, with the rest of the bishop's estates, Tibintune, cum appendiciis suis.  And in the tenure roll of this hundred, temp. Henry III  it is likewise mentioned amongst the bishop's lands, that he had in Hintes and Tibinton three hides.(2)

Erdefwick says “Tame, passing from Oldbury, North-west for two miles or more, receiveth a little brook at Tibbington, vulgo Tipton, which comes from Sedgeley.  At the Conquest one William held Tibbington of the bishop; not long after one William, the son of Warren, was lord thereof, in right of his wife, Lucia Savage, who had by her sir Jeffery Fitzwarren, knt.  who had issue John Fitzwarren; but afterwards, in Henry the Second's time, Robert Wirley, alias Wyrely, was lord thereof, in whose posterity it continued to this day.”(3) In an old deed s.d. I find that John Prior, of Parva Malverne, grants to John Coleshull, clerk the manor of Tybinton.  Test. Martin Abbot of Hales, John de Heronvile, John Russhall, Ralph de Busshopesburi, &c.  Likewise, William, son of Geffry Fitzwarine, lord of Tybinton, grants to John Coleshul, s.d.  Test. John de Heronvile, &c.

Also, William, son of Milo de Finchepath, grants to Henry de Herovile, all his right in the affart, which he held of William, son of Geffry, lord of Tybinton, near the tenement which Henry Attolle held of the waste of Tybinton   Test. Robert de Blower, Robert de Cambwell, William de Walleshull, &c.

And by another deed s.d. Alice, late wife of William de Oxeley, and daughter of Geffry Fitzwarine, knt. Lord of Tybinton, in her pure widowhood, grants to sir John de Herovile all her right in a meadow situated between the churchyard of Tibinton and the Blakeley, rendering, &c. in the hall of Tibinton.  Test. William de Walton, Robert de Blower, William Walleshall; cleric' &c.(4)
In the account we have lately given of the Wyrley family, under their antient seat at Hamstead, are several of their grants of this manor, it being likewise mentioned in the inquisitions there introduced; in addition to which are the following particulars.

John Wirley, esq. Died March 24 3 Henry VIII. (and William Wirley, son of Cornelius, the son of the aforesaid John; was his heir, aet. 12) feifed of one messuage, 135 acres of land, &c. 30s.10d. In Tibington, held of John Wolseley, esq. by fealty, and 8s. Rent.  And by another inquisition it appears, that William Wirley, esq. died February 24, 4 Elizabeth (and Thomas Wirley was his son and heir, aet. 42) feifed, inter alia (as noticed under Hamstead), of this manor of Tibington, alias Tipton, one messuage, 2 cottages, 200 acres of land, 100 of meadow, 500 of pasture, 60 of wood, and 100 of heath, &c. and 40s. Rent, held of the lord Paget, as of his barony or manor of Longdon, by unknown services, and valued at 20 pounds.

Likewise, John Wirley, esq. died February 10, 39 Elizabeth (and Humphry was his son and heir, aet. 21) feifed of this manor, &c. and held as before. (5)

From an old survey of the lordship of Tipton, belonging to Humphry Wyrley, esq. 1690, it then contained as follows:

The Moat Farm (with an old moated house, where the lords of the manor antiently lived perhaps), which contained 112 Acres 1 Rood 22 Perches.  
This is situated eastward of the church, and near the road to Wolverhampton.

And next  beyond it, Mr Jeaven's farm, containing 125 Acres 29 Perches.
South-west of the church is Samuel Whita's farm 62 Acres 3 Roods 33 Perches.

And adjoining to it John Goodridge's farm 43 Acres 2 Roods 7 Perches.

At the extremity, North-east, Richard Fullward's farm 24 Acres 29 Perches

Tipton Green, North-west 18 Acres 2 Roods 29 Perches

And other lands, 12 Acres 2 Roods 24 Perches

And from an elegant plan and terrier, surveyed and drawn by James Sherriff, of Birmingham, 1789, for the present lord of the manor, George Birch, esq.

The above farms are 7 in number.

Tipton green, cottages, &c. 32 Acres 1 Rood 27 Perches

Roads and waste land, 79 Acres 12 Roods 6 Perches

The mine under Tipton green, &c. purchased by Mr Richmond Aston, 14 Acres 2 Roods 20 Perches

Total belonging to the lord of the manor, 509 acres 0 Roods 20 Perches.


The whole parish and manor contained 2160 acres, the circumference of which is 9 miles and 220 yards.

Notes
1 See vol. 1. General Appendix, p.v.
2 Ibid. p. xvi. Et Mon. III p. 231.
3 Erdefwick's Surrey, p. 142
4 Erdefwick's Extracts from old Deeds.  In Harl. MSS. 509.
5 Inquisit. post mortem.

At Tipton green are the remains of an old gentleman's house, called the Green-house, shaded by a small grove of trees, which formerly belonged to the ancestors of the present Thomas Dudley, of Shut-End, esq. and his brother, the rev. John Dudley, rector of Himley.

In an old visitation-book of this county, it appears, that, about the time of Edward IV. or Henry VII. Thomas Dudley, of Tybington, married Joan, daughter and co-heir of John Wells, alias Clarke, of Tybington.  We, likewise, find, that Edward Dudley, of the Green-house, Tipton, gent.  married Isabella Shilton, daughter of --- Shilton, esq. of Wednesbury-hall; and Thomas Dudley, gent. (son of Edward) of Tipton, is so mentioned in the Freeholders' Book of the county, 1653.  Edward (son of Thomas) lent money to the Parliament during the Civil Wars; and had a captain's commission under Cromwell to raise men in Staffordshire, dated November 1, 1659, at Wallingford-house, and signed by Fleetwood.  This Edward was great-great-grandfather to the two present gentlemen above-mentioned.

Erdefwick, in his survey of this country (p.132) says, “In Sedgley is a large goodly park of the Lord Dudleys; and, in the (1) same lordship is the ancient seat of a gentleman that beareth the surname Of Dudley, who (as I take it) descends paternally from the Someries, Lords of Dudley, for he beareth a chevron between three lions heads erased, Gold.”

The parish contained about 2300 acres of land, including roads; 800 dwelling houses.  They are nearly all inhabited by poor people.  The number of inhabitants are estimated at about 3600.  The proprietors of the large works do not live in the parish, excepting Mr. Amphlett, who has an excellent square house at Horsley, pleasantly situated at a proper distance from the coal-works, in which he is a principal partner, and also in a bank at Dudley.

THE CHURCH

This donative curacy is in the gift of the prebendary of Pipa Minor, Lichfield.

Tipton new church was built by contract for 1400 pounds by Kyte, of Kidderminster.  Since then a brick-wall was built round the church-yard for 100 pounds.

A gallery is now building, 1798.  And the three old bells are gone to be re-cast; and three more are intended to be added, to make a set of six bells.

The square of the church is just thirty degrees different from the dial, which I believe, is the variation of the needle, so that it stands pretty exact to the cardinal points.

This church is about seven-eighths of a mile South of the old church (situated in a less populous part of the parish, close on the other side of the canal, which, being a square old tower structure of rough stone and plaster, much decayed, and inconveniently situated, was deserted for this modern neat chapel.  There being nothing farther in either worth recording, and having no account of incumbents, except that the present is the rev. Thomas Shaw Helier, we shall proceed to

THE IRON WORKS IN TIPTON

Messrs. George Parker and co. (or brothers) have

  • Two furnaces, which are estimated to make 20 or 25 tons of pig-iron, per week.
  • One rolling and slitting mill, where they sometimes roll boiler-plates.
  • Three forge-hammers.

Messrs. Zachary Parkes and co, near Dudley Port,

  • One furnace, estimated at 20 or 25 tons per week.
  • One forge.
  • One slitting-mill.

Messrs. Read, Banks and Dumaresq,

  • One furnace, estimated at 25 tons per week, or more.
  • Forge.

Richard Hawkes and co.

  • One furnace, lately erected, about 20 tons per week.

Taylor's foundry, at Toll End, 

  • where they cast chiefly heavy goods for engines, whimseys, and mill-work.

Daniel Moore, formerly Price Thomas's forge, 

  • One slitting-mill, worked by water, with two under-shot wheels; to which is now added a steam-engine; and one of the water-wheels is a substitute for a fly-wheel, and does very well.

Branches of the iron trade are manufacturers of hinges; viz. Edward Fisher, James Fisher, and James Bate, who employ about 100 pair of hands.  The nail trade is of the first consequence (and employs about one-fourth of the number of the people in the parish), as it gives employment to young and old men, women, and children, which begin at six years of age. It is supposed that near one half of the inhabitants are nailors by trade; but since the nail-trade has been so bad, a great number are gone to work at other businesses, which are chiefly the best workmen.  Others are thrown out of work in consequence of their not being able to make good nails.  These are chiefly children and old people; which is found to be very hurtful to the poor.

The different sorts of nails made are very numerous; from 2oz. Tack, which is 1200 nails, to weigh 2 oz. (some having been made as small as 1¼ oz. for curiosity), up to large spikes.  Considerable quantities of horse-nails are made likewise here; and some few ox-nails.  The place is reckoned rather famous for making horse nails.

There are several shops that make shovels and tongs, which may employ about forty pair of hands.

Auger and edge tool-makers is another branch that employs a considerable number of hands.  

There are several wood-screw makers, and one or two awl-blade makers.

The fender-trade was another branch; all but one water-mill, which is employed in grinding fenders.  There were two, and each did more than is now done.

Besides the various iron-works, which, from the abundance of coal and iron-ore in this neighbourhood, seem to be the natural trades of the country, there is in this parish one extensive manufactory of a different species, which was established here by the present proprietors, under the firm of James Keir and company, about eighteen years ago, on account of the cheapness of fuel, and of the convenience of the canal by which goods are brought from and sent to Hull, Liverpool, Bristol, London, and many other parts of the kingdom.  It consists of several articles.

1. A manufacture of Alkali, which is an article similar to that of which various kinds are annually imported from abroad, under the names of Barilla, Pot-ash, Pearl-ash, &c.  This alkali is made by a process invented by the proprietors, from various neutral salts, and residuums of chemical operations, such as those left in the distillation of aqua fortis, and making of oil of vitriol; all which residuums were, before the establishment of the manufacture, generally thrown away as useless; but are now converted into a valuable article of commerce.  The alkali here made is not sold, but employed in the second branch of the undertaking; namely,

1. Soap-making; which business was entered into merely as an advantageous mode of employing the above-mentioned alkali, by means of which it is carried to such an extent, that it yields to the revenue of excise about 10,000 pounds annually.

1. White-lead.  This article is manufactured by a new process, invented by the proprietors, and differing from the common mode, in this respect, that vinegar is not employed.  The white-lead here is principally used by the potters for glazing their wares.

1. Red-lead is made here in considerable quantities in the usual manner, and is principally consumed in the manufacture of flint-glass, which is carried on to a great extent in Dudley, the neighbourhood of Stourbridge, and in Birmingham.

1. Metal-sashes for windows.  This elegant improvement in architecture, by which the greatness lightness is combined with the greatest strength, is executed here in mouldings made either of a peculiar golden-coloured metal, or of wrought iron, which is afterwards to be painted or japanned. The yellow metal is a compound of copper, zinc, and iron, invented by the proprietors, and possesses singular properties, which make it fit for this purpose.  It is as strong as iron, and, like iron, may be forged or rolled when red-hot.  Bars of this metal, or of iron, are rolled hot between steel-rollers, in which concavities are so cut and turned, that they give corresponding convex mouldings to the bars as they pass through them.  Windows of this manufacture are in Windsor Castle, Carleton House, and in many principal houses in the kingdom.

This manufactory of alkali, soap, white lead, red lead, and metal sashes, occupies  a space of several acres adjoining to the Birmingham canal, receives the power requisite for its various operations from two water-wheels and two fire-engines, and gives employment to a number of people; among whom, it may be added as a singularity, there is not a single person, from the proprietors downwards, who are now employed in these manufactures, who had been bred to them.  In the businesses of red-lead and soap, which differ little from those in other place, workmen have been sometimes employed.  The other manufactures, being quite new, could not receive this assistance, and are carried on by labourers.

1. The Dudleys of Tipton had (as above shown) a house on the borders of Tipton parish, adjoining to Sedgley, which was taken down, and the middle part of the present house built of the materials; so that Erdefwick might easily suppose it to be in the same lordship.

APPENDIX TWO

ROLL OF TIPTON BOARD AND COUNCIL CHAIRMEN FROM 1855 TO 1965


CHAIRMEN OF THE TIPTON LOCAL BOARD OF HEALTH 1855 – 1894

1855 Rev. William Kerr
1856 Rev. William Kerr
1857 Rev. William Kerr
1858 William Howells
1859 William Howells
1860 William Howells
1861 William Howells
1862 William Howells
1863 William Howells
1864 William Howells
1865 William Howells
1866 William Howells
1867 William Howells
1868 William Howells
1869 William Howells
1870 W L Underhill
1871 W L Underhill
1872 W L Underhill
1873 W L Underhill
1874 W L Underhill
1875 James Whitehouse
1876 James Whitehouse
1877 James Whitehouse
1878 James Whitehouse
1879 James Whitehouse
1880 James Whitehouse
1881 James Whitehouse
1882 James Whitehouse
1883 William Whitehouse
1884 James Whitehouse
1885 Edward Bayley
1886 Edward Bayley
1887 Edward Bayley
1888 Edward Bayley
1889 Daniel Hipkins
1890 Daniel Hipkins
1891 Daniel Hipkins
1892 Daniel Hipkins
1893 Daniel Hipkins
1894 Daniel Hipkins


CHAIRMEN OF THE TIPTON URBAN DISTRICT COUNCIL 1895 – 1937

1895 Daniel Hipkins
1896 Daniel Hipkins
1897 Daniel Hipkins
1898 Clement H Barrows
1899 Daniel Hipkins
1900 Thomas Crew
1901 Daniel Hipkins
1902 Daniel Hipkins
1903 George S Peake
1904 James W Dudley
1905 Joseph Powell
1906 Joseph Powell
1907 Joseph Powell
1908 Richard Mason
1909 Thomas E Salter
1910 William A Robbins
1911 Joseph Powell
1912 John A Shephard
1913 William J W George
1914 Thomas E Salter
1915 George S Peake
1916 George S Peake
1917 William Woolley Doughty
1918 William Woolley Doughty
1919 William Woolley Doughty
1920 William Woolley Doughty
1921 William Woolley Doughty
1922 Thomas E Salter
1923 William Woolley Doughty
1924 William Woolley Doughty
1925 William H Powis
1926 William H Powis
1927 William H Powis
1928 John W Bourne
1929 John W Bourne
1930 John W Bourne
1931 Arthur E Bannister
1932 Joseph R Baker
1933 William J W George
1936 Arthur Frederick Welch
1937 Sidney Davis


ROLL OF MAYORS OF THE TIPTON MUNICIPAL BOROUGH COUNCIL

1938 Arthur Frederick Welch
1939 Arthur Frederick Welch
1940 William Henry Powis
1941 Arthur Edwin Bolton
1942 Arthur Edwin Bolton
1943 Arthur Edwin Bolton
1944 Arthur Jones
1945 Arthur Jones
1946 Arthur Jones
1947 William Edward Hampton
1948 William Edward Hampton
1949 William Edward Hampton
1950 William Edward Hampton
1951 Arthur Edwin Bolton
1952 Arthur Edwin Bolton
1953 Arthur Edwin Bolton
1954 Hannah Geneva Cox
1955 Sidney Hall
1956 James Gill
1957 William Horace Hirons
1958 John William Walters
1959 John William Walters
1960 Albert Morton
1961 Albert Morton
1962 John William Walters
1963 Frank Austin Chamberlain
1964 William Eric Drew
1965 Jonah Whitehouse

3 comments:

  1. I am looking for the family/descendants of mary Quinsey Born 1796 in Staffordshire, Dudley, Tipton, She married Benjamin Warren and they had 10 children. Mary Quinsey Warren died circa 1873 in Junetown Ontario. One of their sons was Benjamin B. Warren circa 1816/23 to 1894. and he married Martha Graham Born 1820. One of their granddaughters was Charlotte Ann Warren My grandmother who married William McConnell Jr. of Lansdowne Ontario.

    Any help with photos, or more information would be greatly appreciated.
    My email is sue.defoor@yahoo.ca

    Sue McConnell Defoor

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  2. This blog so much and I would like to thank to the blogger..

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  3. Thank you so much for this history. Love it. My grandparents lived in Horseley Road from early 1900s. Unfortunately the house where they lived 82 Horsely Road no longer exists. I really would love a pic of the house as it was demolished in the late 1960s. My grandparents then had to go in a high rise flat in Ocker Hill. Can anyone give me any history of, I believe, a public house, that became two houses, 20a and 20b Horsely Road, before it became No 82. I always thought it was a Coach House but I have found out that it was an early tavern. It stood next to what is now, The Shrubberies, and where the house stood are two new houses. Would love some history.

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