First-hand accounts of Castle Bromwich in the past

The 1960s

Village School by Graham Simmons

I remember moving to the village school in about 1962/3. I had been at Highcroft private school further up towards the church for a couple of years but my parents decided to move me to the village school. The school was very old. My grandfather went there too as he was born in the village and I lived here from when I was born until I was 22. My father still lives in the same house in Castle Bromwich to this day.

I can still remember Mrs Huggins (a lovely lady teacher) and Mrs Davy and Miss Dobinson. The toilets were outside, adjacent to the playground. The morning assembly and PE were carried out in the Victory Hall. We used to walk from the school to the Victory Hall in the morning through a little alleyway, carrying a large mat to sit on, with a pupil at each end carrying it.

I can't remember walking to school but can remember walking home. I used to walk out of the playground over a small piece of waste land opposite the shops. I can still remember the names: Lambs (toy shop), Perks (wool shop), Holes (hardware), and I think it was the Salad Bowl (fruit and veg) at the end. My cousin now owns this property and it is an office. I then walked past Jack's (the barber) and through the Coach and Horses car park, into Ringmere Avenue, up Woodford Avenue and I was home.

I too remember watching the builders build our new school in Southfield Avenue circa 1964. We were the first pupils to move into the school. I still sometimes have a look at my old school when I visit my father. Happy times.

(Editor's note: Highcroft private school was a large house on the Chester Road at the junction with Kyter Lane; it was run by the Joyner family.)

Memory by Graham Simmons © from Memories of Castle Bromwich on the Francis Frith website. For more go to

Living in Green Lane by Maizie

I used to live in Green Lane in the early 60s. We lived next door to a block of shops. Opposite us was a field were we used to build a fire on Guy Fawkes night. Next to the field was a farm. We used to go down the lane picking blackberries and raspberries straight off the bushes. We used to go in the fields and pick up the potatoes that were left behind after the farm workers had dug them up.

Memory from the Birmingham History Forum

'A History of Castle Bromwich for Young People' written by William Dargue 2016 for the Castle Bromwich Bellringers.

We’ve been ringing here for 500 years and are keen to involve local people in our ancient art. Contact us via our church website, if you want learn to ring or visit the tower or have one of us talk to your group about the history of Castle Bromwich, our church or bellringing.  Material on this site may be reused only for non-commercial purposes providing appropriate attribution is given (Creative Commons Licence Attribution NonCommercial 4.0) - details on the Contact page.