The History of Walsall
The History of Walsall is a fascinating subject that has inspired writers, artists and politicians. The town has been described as having the "soul of England". According to local historians, the town's earliest inhabitants lived in the area around the sixth century. In the eighth century, the town became a target of raids from France, The Netherlands and Germany. In order to protect the town from attack, Saxons and Angles from Northern Germany were recruited as mercenaries. These soldiers were given farmland in return for their services. In the ninth century, the Saxons and Angles began colonising England. Visit https://walsallbusinessassociation.blogspot.com/ for more information on Walsall.
In the 14th century, the town was overrun with troublemakers and riots. A group of men attacked a new mill in the town, breaking windows and destroying the goods and contents of nearby dwelling houses. By 1885, the town had experienced a dramatic turnaround. Today, the city remains one of the fastest-growing towns in the United Kingdom. And despite its problems, its future is bright. And while the city's population has continued to rise, many industries have relocated to the city.
In the 19th century, Walsall's population increased dramatically. The town prospered thanks to the industries in the area. While some people were dissatisfied with the quality of life in the town, many of these new residents moved to the city. This increased demand for housing led to the creation of the Political Union for the Town of Warwick. In 1830, the Union was formed at the Black Boy Inn on Fieldgate. It was then that Joseph Hicken, later the secretary of the Anti-Corn Law League, was appointed to be its first secretary.
The first purpose-built theatre opened in Walsall's Old Square in 1803. The audience was allowed to invest fifty pounds in shares and received interest. The takings for a full house were fifty to sixty pounds. Unfortunately, the theatre closed in the early 1840s. The proprietors were evicted because they failed to pay rent. The building was then converted into shops. In the early twenty-first century, the theatre became a high-tech hub for the area.
In 1835, the city's first public library opened in Rushall Street. The unitarian minister, Rev. Thomas Bowen, provided a library room and a librarian. The new theatre was built on the site of the new town hall. In 1855, 2,000 pigs were brought to the market. In the same year, the market closed down. By the late nineteenth century, the focus had shifted to general retail sales and grain.
In the nineteenth century, Walsall's first cinema opened in the town centre. However, with the rise of television, cinema attendance declined and all cinemas closed. In 1930, a Wurlitzer theatre organ was installed in the New Picture House in Lower Bridge Street. The New Picture House was later renamed the Odeon and Gaumont. In the 1960s, developments were constructed all around the town centre. By 2010, most of the tower blocks had been demolished.
In the early nineteenth century, a cinema opened in Walsall's town centre. As the use of television increased, the town's cinemas began to shut. In fact, by 1787, all of the cinemas in Walsallclosed. Until then, a Wurlitzer theatre organ had been installed in the town's town centre. The Wurlitzer theatre organ was installed in the New Picture House. This building was later renamed the Gaumont cinema.
In 1857, Walsall council decided to open a library. The Free Libraries Act of 1850 granted local boroughs the power to create a free public library. Nichols and Morgan designed a Renaissance style building in Goodall Street. It was later converted to a reading room and news room. The Robinson printing works library was given to the Walsall Free Library when it closed. By 1910, the Illuminations had become a popular event.
In 1832, the town became a Parliamentary borough. The first Walsall MP was Charles Smith Forster, a banker and former mayor of the town. Forster held this seat until 1837. In the late eighties, there was a large union movement among the voters. In 1832, the population of the city grew by ten-fold. In the early nineteenth century, there was a growing industry in the area. In 1840, the iron foundries produced a vast number of metal goods.