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History Society

Non-members welcome (fee payable) ~ Zoom connection also available

The contact details for Chaddesley Corbett History Society from Freda Griffith 077476 18 487 ___________________________________________________ Visits: June 22 Tong Church & Chillington Hall July 13 Forge Mill Needle Museum (Redditch & Bordesley Abbey) Meetings: Sept. 21 ‘The Potter Family’ - David Hardwick (How one Chaddesley family helped change the world) Oct. 19 ‘Producing the BBC “Antiques Roadshow” - Mike Jackson Nov. 16 ‘How War & Work shaped my family’ - David Green ______________________________________________________

Chaddesley’s Origins

The village of Chaddesley Corbett is an ancient settlement with a prehistoric buriel mound and traces of a Roman road. Originally known as Chaddesley the name is thought to mean "Ceadda's clearing in the wood" and is first mentioned in a Saxon Charter of 816 when the land was given to the Bishop of Worcester in return for hospitality to the King of Mercia and his men. It is mentioned in the Domesday Book as belonging to a Saxon Noblewoman - and had two priests, several corn mills, a population as large as Kidderminster and two saltpans in Droitwich for it's own use. After the Norman Conquest the Manor of Chaddesley was owned by the Corbett family who added their name to it’s title. Later, church lands passed to the Earldom of Warwick and, eventually, to the Throckmortons of Coughton Court.

Contemporary History

Chaddesley Woods in Chaddesley Corbett became a Nature Reserve in 1973 through the generosity of Mr. John Cadbury. The reserve consists of 53 hectares of native oak woodland and 47 hectares of recent plantations of young hardwoods and softwoods - which were added to show how wild life conservation can be intergrated with modern commercial management. A "Jubilee Walk" was introduced in 1977 to mark the 25th anniversary of the Queen's accession to the throne. The walk is marked by yellow arrows - which indicate public rights of way - and by white arrows which indicate courtesy paths. There are Voluntary Wardens for the woods and the area is managed by the Nature Conservancy Council. The Woods are a special feature of the area and attract many visitors all through the year. Car parking by the roadside. Guard against thefts. ____________________
Chaddesley Corbett

Chaddesley - 100 years ago

Week of June 3rd - 1922 The Cricket Team was robbed .. by the clock, as the visiting Hagley Team dallied over tea. The second team achieved victory at Franche by a narrow margin. A column written some 50 years ago by Dr. Fitch mentions his successful efforts to provide an efficient clock for the tower. (On Oct. 14th 1881, a great gale blew scaffolding from the spire, boards of which landed on the school next door .. “and the scholars unceremoniously quitted the vicinity.” June 10th The Vicar announced that £50 will be needed to repair our spire. The Cricket Club - Penny and Milward were in fine scoring form. June 17th The Parish Council meeting was, once again, preoccupied with the ubiquitous ‘Allotments’. The status of the newly acquired Woodrow Allotments have been called into question. The Labour Party held a meeting in Chaddesley School on Wednesday, but it was poorly attended. The removal of the dangerous footpath opposite the church is fizzling out on the economic wave. June 24th The church spire is now not in a dangerous condition .. and the repairs necessary are of a preservative nature. Our village is now being restored to its pre-war beauty. Visitors are remarking on its cleanliness and charm. ‘Alexandra Rose’ Day is set for July 1st. No institution has more friends and fewer detractors than Kidderminster Infirmary. A selection copied from the Kidderminster Shuttle by CC Local History Society which appeared in the June 2022 issue of the Parish magazine ____________________________________________________ What passes for “Humour” in Chaddesley Many will remember the Cobbler (who doubled as the Postman) with his blunt query - “Have ye brought thee money ?” “N0 ?” “Then thee boots’ not done !” _____________________________________ Others might remember “Big Head”, who drank at ‘The Talbot’, who always knew better, been there, done that, more times and more frequently than anybody else. Thinking to give him a lesson, someone lay in wait in a newly dug grave, with a while sheet draped over him. Along comes “Big Head” and said fellow stands up and complains “.. Oooo, I am feeling cold !” thinking to scare the man. But Chaddesley beer is strong beer (and makes brave men of us all !) So “Big Head” remarks “..No wonder thee’s cold, thee’s got no dirt on thee !” and proceeds to kick soil over the poor man in an attempt to bury him, requiring help from those gathered behind nearby tombstones waiting to see what happened ! ___________________________________ One lad, who ‘specialised’ in snatching other’s drinks, got his ‘come- upance’, when a glass of liquid paraffin with fruit dye was downed in one gulp .. and left the lad sincerely regretting it, for some time after ! ____________________________________ A 1922 visit from the Birmingham Tramways Sports Club resulted in Chaddesley wins for both Bowls and Cricket Teams .. and a challenge to a drinking match. The Landlord asked “ .. first visit the Chaddesley then .. ?” “Thought so .. !” “The Brewery hasn’t got sufficient beer for that competition !” _____________________________________
And not forgetting the large rings which were set into the sandstone banks of the main road as it approached Bromsgrove - by Battlefield House - from which chains were to be slung to prevent ‘The Jerries’ from driving towards Chaddesley !
Harvest Festival Offerings Chaddesley school - 60 years ago
Chaddesley Corbett History Society The Society is pleased to announce that a history of the parish from 1900-1950 i published in July.
‘How it Was’ is based on the memories of those who lived in the parish during the first half of the twentieth century and on research into many contemporary documents, all of which help so much in depicting life in Chaddesley Corbett during that time. 100 of the book’s 256 pages contain nearly 400 black and white images, many of which have been donated to the Society by parishioners both past and present. The book will be £8 and we are happy to take advance orders which can be made by contacting:- Sylvia Beardshaw 01562 777955 or email
On 14 May 1940, Secretary of State for War Anthony Eden announced the creation of the Local Defence Volunteers (LDV)—later to became known as the Home Guard. Far more men volunteered than the government expected and by the end of June, there were nearly 1.5 million volunteers. One of their first tasks was to create a first line of defence for rural communities. In 1940 there was great concern in the government that invasion was imminent. So the War Department sent out an order to all LDV brigades to make home-made anti-tank obstacles to be put in the middle of the road to hamper the progress of enemy tanks in the event of invasion. Each village had their own ideas about shape and design. Olive Mason recalls the Chaddesley LDV brigade made four; two for the top of Briar Hill and two for the entrance to the village outside the Police Station. They used easily obtained 4 ft diameter concrete drainage pipes, stood them on end and then filled them to the top with concrete. The iron bar (seen in photo above) was to be used to attach large steel chains between the blocks. Remarkably, two of Chaddesley’s ‘obstacles’ have survived and can still be seen exactly where they were left 80 years ago ─ in the snowdrop orchard opposite the Old Police Station, in the village street. Many of us have probably walked or driven past them hundreds of times and not realised what they were under their annual canopy of nettles. _____________________________________________________________