Welcome


This site has been a year in the planning, research and creation, and yet it is only just the beginning of the publication. During that year ambition of what could be done has given way to practicality of what can be achieved; indulgence of design capability to clarity of presentation; and the realisation that this project will never be  truly complete.


2014 will be the 50th anniversary of the designation of Redditch as a new town. The RLHS believes this is an event of historical significance to the town.  It is as important as the founding of Bordesley Abbey and its subsequent dissolution.  The conversion of Forge Mill, and other mills along the Arrow to needle scouring mills, The decision of the Gatehouse Community to move one mile south to higher ground. The ambition of Albert Eadie to make motorcycles and the foresight of Charles Deveraux to build a shadow factory when the government could not see the threat of war with Germany.


Was the change from old town to new town a good thing? Opinion will always be divided.  No, we can no longer shop in the myriad of independent stores that populated Evesham Street or know most of the people we see.  But yes we now have good roads, houses and schools and the days when Silver Street and the area known as Wapping, with rat infested slums and Dickensian workshops, was a no-go area at night are also gone.


Remembering Lost Redditch


Post-war redevelopment and growth led in 1964. to Redditch being designated a “New Town” in support of the housing the overspill from Birmingham. As part of that redevelopment many streets in the town centre were demolished to make way for the new Kingfisher Centre.


Many residents of the old town did not welcome the planned changes and even today express anger at what they see as the wanton destruction the new town brought. To those born in the town since the 1980’s, and new comers  like me, we have no memory of the old town or what is was like for example, to walk down Evesham Street from Mount Pleasant to Church Green.  Therefore this project has two aims.


Firstly for residents of the old town to record and remember those memories and preserve them for future generations.  Secondly to present those memories to residents who only know the new town so that they can learn and appreciate the towns rich history.


As part of the commemoration of the 50 years since that designation, the Redditch Local History Society is documenting the streets that were lost. in that redevelopment.


Your Contribution


We hope that this site is meeting the aims above. As we have said this is just the start and there is a lot more that can be added, but only if you contribute to the contents.  We are not experts on the history of Redditch, merely enthusiastic collectors and processors of historic information.  Many of you have memories of the old town, please write them down and send them to us.  Many of you will have photographs, documents and artefacts that bring to life the old town, please let us copy and include them in this site. Please go to the Contacts & Contribute page for details of who to contribute content to these sites.


When browsing this site, if you see a mistake don’t criticise, send us a correction. If you see a gap in the information, don’t complain, send us material to help make it more complete. Most of all if you find the site interesting and informative, don’t tell us, tell others so they too can enjoy it.


Thank you,


Derek & Jill Coombes



50 Years of Redditch New Town


The Remembering Lost Redditch is just one of several projects being supported by the Redditch Local History Society as part of the commemoration to 50 years of Redditch New Town.





Other Projects


As well as the Lost Redditch project, we have decided, in time, to include in the site other data the RLHS has been working on.




All these sites are still being constructed and will progressively be added to this site.


Please contact us if you would like  details of other projects.




Existing Sites


Other sites managed by the Redditch Local History Society include:


www.redditchhistory.org.uk

The Redditch Local History Society’s principal web site.


www.redditchhistory.com

This site is to give a brief introduction to the various aspects of the town’s history but essentially to be a portal to the the various sites which encompass the history of Redditch


www.redditchwalks.org.uk

The aim of the site is to develop walks related to Redditch history and existing historical artefacts and buildings


www.redditchforum.org.uk

The Redditch Local History Forum is our on-line site dedicated to the discussion of Redditch History & Heritage.


www.redditchheritage.org.uk/sites/RHP-Heritage-Sites.htm

Redditch Local History Society's project to investigate, document and publish details of the historic sites that remain in Redditch today.