BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

On a bike, riding somewhere. Every day, rain or shine.

Posts tagged ‘statue’

April 3rd – A better day. I set off to work in Darlaston on a pleasant, warm and sunny morning, and then rode over to Tipton at lunchtime.

I was reminded why I love this place, and what the Black Country has my heart; The view of Church Hill, Wednesbury and the twin sisters from Ocker Hill was bustling, frenetic, and yet home to me. Then at Tipton, the canalside park devoted to William Perry, the Tipton Slasher and prize fighter of folklore was gorgeous and peaceful.

You can’t beat the Black Country.

March 25th – A long ride, 58 miles, at a decent average of 12.5mph saw me ride out via the backlanes of Stonnall, Buzzards Valley and along the canal to Kingsbury, then over to Hurley, Grendon, DOrdon, Polesworth and up around Seckington, Clifton and home via Whittington. It was a gorgeous spring day, with warm sun on my back, daffodils in the hedgerows and lots of surprises – like the peacocks in the garden at Footherley and the gorilla statue I must have passed many times, but never seen, at Lee Marston, outside the large factory that’s now an industrial park.

There’s a story there I’m sure.

Whittington Church is really worth a visit at the moment – I passed as darkness was falling but as can be seen, the churchyard is a veritable riot of daffodils.

A great ride that really cheered me up.

June 29th – I find myself running errands to Tipton a lot lately, which I don’t mind at all – it’s a decent ride from Darlaston, and there appear to be plenty of curiosities to investigate when I get there.

In Coronation Gardens, for instance, there’s a statue to a prizefighter who holds legendary status. Wiliam ‘Tipton Slasher’ Perry was one of the greatest local pugilists of all time, and held the title of English Champion from 1850-57; he was a noted character and the pub he used to hang out at – the nearby Fountain – was centre of his empire and is still a shrine to the fighter today.

William is regarded now as one of the greatest sons of the town, despite dying an alcoholic.

Today, his statue stands in classic fighting pose, his familiars pigeons. I wonder how many pass by and not know who the statue is remembering?

February 6th – I had promised not to moan about the rain again. But come on, it was rain all day from the moment I awoke until late into the evening. That’s not good. And again, that evil, evil wind.

I got out around teatime and did a quick loop of the town. There is something enchanting about traffic, electric light and rain, but I think I’ve seen enough of it.

All I want right now is a dry, calm and sunny spring. It seems unlikely. But I can always hope…

November 15th –  A long day and a late spin around Brownhills. The town was quiet, and there was no sign of the Christmas I’d seen in Birmingham the previous Friday. It was windy, but not too bad. Stood on a quiet traffic island, Morris Miner was still stood silent, metallic sentry.

Sometimes the most changeless things are best.

October 29th – Just near the Post Office on Victoria Road, Darlaston, stands the War Memorial. Quite simply, it’s one of the best I have ever seen.

Contained in it’s own, peaceful gardens, it’s a sombre, quiet and lovely place with a wonderful sculpture. I often stop here and have five minutes rest and reflection.

I’ve seen a lot of such remembrance art before, a lot of it in much larger towns than Darlaston. I can honestly say none has matched this one. A beautiful, sombre thing indeed.

April 9th – I had a meeting in Sutton in the morning, then had to pop down to Tyseley. Leaving too late to head anywhere else, but too early to go straight home, I cycled back along the canal home. I love the bit of canal through Bordesley. The stretch past The Bond – so many architectural and technological periods in one shot. I have no idea what’s going on with the statue and the large yellow tank at Typhoo junction, but the cowslips on the embankment were a real treat. 

A really nice afternoon.

November 7th – It is, of course, coming up to remembrance, and across Walsall, Streetpride teams from the Council and volunteers are both working to ensure our war memorials are clean, tidy and generally up to scratch. One of my favourite in Walsall is the one at Darlaston. Human, touching and poignant, the statue of the Tommy is emotive and devotional, and the surrounding peaceful garden is designed to be enjoyed by the blind and partially sighted. 

Tucked away in a very quiet corner of Darlaston, I recommend visiting this one, and musing on the loss and service of those that paid the ultimate price.

For a list of Remembrance Events this weekend, see this post on my main blog.

January 4th – I had to go see the doctor. I still had horrendous stomach problems which I was only managing to abate with Immodium. I felt loads better in myself, but I was still having trouble eating. I’ve lost a whole bunch of weight since Friday, but I don’t recommend this as a dieting technique. What started as food poisoning seems to be a bowel infection, and I’m now the proud owner of a large box of antibiotics, which I’m praying will do the trick. Quite pleased that I cycled to the surgery, I took to the canal at Leighswood Bridge and cycled back home to Brownhills along the canal. Passing through Walsall Wood, I noted that Rod, the sculpted fisherman, is still bereft of Bob, his piscean prize. I take it replacing the fish that once dangled from the iron angler’s pole has been given up as a lost cause. Predictable, but sad.