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A Tribute to Bill Gwilliam MBE

A Tribute to Bill Gwilliam, MBE

Worcester People and Places Articles

The Shambles

The Shambles

'Buy!  Buy!  Buy! Saturday night in the Shambles, after 9 o'clock, was like a medieval fair, with butchers vying with each other to auction unsold meat. Until about 1930, a few butchers had any form of refridgeration, and meat was sold off cheaply, rather than let it spoil over the weekend ...


Victoria House and Fashion in 1900

Victoria House and Fashion in 1900

The most famous of Worcester's drapery and millinery establishments in the 19th century was Victoria House. Its premises was part of the old Hop Pole Hotel, one of the most famous posting establishments in the Midlands.


Foregate Street

Foregate Street

From the Town Gate in the Foregate to the Liberty Post at the top of Salt Lane (now Castle Street), was the northern Liberties of the City. The land was outside the walls, but under the control of the City Corporation. Before the Battle of 1651, it was a place of hovels, but in preparation for the attack, these were cleared away. 


Astwood Cemetery - Statistics @ 11th February 2019

Astwood Cemetery - Statistics @ 11th February 2019

The present  official statistics for Astwood Cemetery, @11th February 2019 stands at :

  1. Recorded burials to-date = 79,451
  2. Remainder of burial plots available = 600
  3. Current acreage of land = 85 acres 
  4. There are no plans at present to reuse previously used burial plots
  5. There are no further plans at present for a further Cemetery in Worcester or surrounding area 

 

 

 

 

 


The Worcester White House,  - Held for 12 Pennies and One Red Rose

The Worcester White House, - Held for 12 Pennies and One Red Rose

The Worcester White House, Foregate Street, was until recent times known as the Star Hotel and in the mid - 19th century, the Start and Garter. It shares the distinction of being the oldest County inn with the Lygon Arms of Broadway, for it has had a licence since 1588, the year of the Armada.


More Street Characters

More Street Characters

The Shambles by day attracted the street musicians, if one could generously call them that, for a few could generally play or sing. One played a concertina outside the Butchers Arms (now the site of Marks & Spencers), and his repertoire consists of The Old Rustic Bridge and Abide With Me.


Nash's Almshouses

Nash's Almshouses

Off New Street are Nash's Almshouses, originally intended, like St.Oswald's and Berkeley's for the aged and to be known as Nash's Hospital. It still occupies the original site, and has given the name Nash's Passage to the narrow way by which it was approached. John Nash, in his will dated 1661, 'gave and devised to 16 trustees, property to be held in trust for pious and charitable uses' and with it was bought not only the land upon which the almshouses stand, but five acres of land, the site of the Royal Infirmary. Further almshouses were built on part of that land, which were demolished several years ago at the site of the Cattle Market. The 25 old folk lived rent free, with a small pension, free coal and light, and had other benefits.

 


Alderman John Nash

Alderman John Nash

In New Street there is a fine half-timbered building known as Nash's House. It takes its name from Alderman John Nash, Mayor, and twice representative of the City in Parliament during Charles 1 reign.


St. Andrew's Wesleyan Church, Pump Street

St. Andrew's Wesleyan Church, Pump Street

In 1795, four years after John Wesley's death, the Wesleyan's in the City bought an old chapel in Pump Street belonging to a branch of Independents. It was surrounded by tumbledown houses, and like all the early dissenter's chapels, was tucked away up an alley so not to invite trouble from the mob. 


John Wesley in Worcester

John Wesley in Worcester

The City's first Wesleyan Chapel was built in New Street in 1772, and a plaque on the wall commemorates the building. The first recorded visit of Wesley to the County was in 1761, when he preached in the 'Abbey Church' at Evesham.

 

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New Street Inns and Cock Fighting

New Street Inns and Cock Fighting

Twelve large inns catered for the trade in the Cornmarket in olden times, and four of them were in New Street. They were the Greyhound (later called the Old Greyhound) , the New Greyhound, the Swan, and the Pheasant. The Old Greyhound was the principal place of departure for Carrier carts. No less than nine carts left the Greyhound for outlying places on Saturday afternoons, around 4 o'clock. 


New Street

New Street

Originally, Friar Street and New Street was one street known as Glover Street; there was no break where Charles Street goes to the Blockhouse, Pump Street was a very narrow lane, the bottom of which was known as Vine Street. 


The Blockhouse

The Blockhouse

The Blockhouse was the immediate area outside the City Walls on the east and was part of the Liberties of the City. It was a network of ditches, much like Sedgemoor. Even in the 1850's one remained, with its path along, known as 'Withy Walk', now St Paul's Street. 


Wyatt's Hospital

Wyatt's Hospital

Almost opposite Tudor House is Wyatt's Hospital, founded for six poor men, by Edward Wyatt, Mayor of Worcester in 1696.


Tudor House

Tudor House

Friar Street has retained more of its timber-framed buildings than any other street in Worcester. Many of these houses were of considerable size and were once occupied by citizens of substance, but in the 18th century most of them were divided into tenements and allowed to fall into a sorry state of dilapidation. Many of the brick-faced buildings are in fact, timber-framed behind the facade.


The Greyfriar's School

The Greyfriar's School

Previous to Schaffer's ownership, the prinicipal part of the building was in the occupation of Mr. Christopher Bardin, an old gentleman of venerable aspect, who conducted a private school at modest fees, in the days when public elementary education was in it's infancy.


The Greyfriars

The Greyfriars

The Greyfriars in Friar Street is the finest half-timbered building in the City. The building was only part of the Friary which took in all the ground occupied by the present building a and that of Laslett's Hospital.