Early history

In 985, King Ethelred gave several large pieces of land to Lady Wulfrun, an Anglo-Saxon noblewoman and landowner. He granted the land to her in a charter. Nine years later she gave several pieces of land to the Monastery of St. Mary in Wolverhampton (now St. Peter’s Church), including land at Bilston, Brownhills, Willenhall, and Pelsall, then called Peolshale. The land became part of the Deanery manor under the control of the Canons of Wolverhampton, until after the Norman Conquest when it became Crown property.

The Domesday Book described Peolshale as half a hide of 'waste', belonging to the Canons of Wolverhampton. The term ‘waste’ meant that no taxes were collected from it, possibly because it was uninhabited. Half a hide of land was about 60 acres. At that time the area was covered by dense woodland and was part of Cannock Forest. King William gave Peolshale to fellow Norman, Robert de Corbeuil, for his assistance in the conquest. Robert de Corbeuil’s descendants soon included the territorial title 'de Pelshall' in their name, which eventually was shortened to 'Pelshall'. The name survived until the granddaughter of the last Sir Thomas Pelshall, married the Earl of Breadalbane, in the 18th century.

Little is known of Pelsall’s early history. Ernest James Homeshaw, in his book ‘The Story of Bloxwich’ published in 1955, includes a reference to a document in the British Library, dated 1215 to 1224 that refers to a mill at Peleshale. This could have been beside the Clockmill Brook that flows to Goscote, which is considered to be the site of the earliest settlement in the area. In 1286 Robert the miller had two acres of land, possibly by the mill.

The Staffordshire Assize Roll of 1272 includes a reference to John de Chelesle, who chased and caught William, son of Robert de Thene, and Adam, son of Alote, on the heath at Norton. He accused them of breaking into his Lord's grange at Pyshalle, then bound and beheaded them. He was arrested for the brutal act and taken to the Bishop's prison at Eccleshale, from where he quickly escaped. He was soon recaptured and later beheaded.

At this time the area was still part of Cannock Forest, the chief forester being Phillip de Montgomery who in 1294 had two acres of rent-free land. In 1300 the forest at Pelsall ceased to be part of Cannock Forest and so was freed from the strict forest laws. This allowed the area to develop. In 1311 the first church was built in the village and in 1327 eleven of the villagers paid the sum of £2.12s.0d to be listed on the Subsidy Roll, a tax that was granted by the first parliament of King Edward III to meet the expenses of the Scotch War.


From William White's 'History, Gazetteer and Directory of Staffordshire' published in 1851.

Sadly, little survives from those early years. Remains of an ancient moated farm were found near to the old fingerpost, at the junction of Norton Road and Lichfield Road. The farm measured 168 feet by 80 feet. Remains of another moated building could be found in a grove in the Parkfields, opposite Pelsall Hall, but were destroyed in the 19th century by coal mining.

In medieval times the village was centred on Mouse Hill, with a population of 14 households in 1563. The first recorded ale house in the village was opened by William Horton, who obtained his brewing license in 1593. The population continued to grow. In 1665 the Hearth Tax returns list 51 households, 14 of which were not eligible to pay the tax. The pre-industrial community, living on the higher ground around Mouse Hill had a church, a manor house, a smithy, a communal oven, an animal pound, water from several wells, farmsteads, and a village green.

In the 17th and 18th centuries, road transport was difficult because many roads were simply dirt tracks that were almost impassable during wet weather, especially for heavy loads. Pelsall’s economy was greatly boosted by the coming of the canal, which led to a lot of industrial development in the area. The Wyrley & Essington Canal opened in 1797 to overcome the problems of transporting coal from the mines in the Cannock area to Wolverhampton and the Birmingham Canal.

An Act of Parliament was passed on 30th April, 1792 to allow the work to commence. Much of the finance came from Wolverhampton businessmen, principally the Molineux family. Work soon started under the canal company's engineer, William Pitt. There were two branches, one to a colliery at Essington and the other to Birchills near the centre of Walsall. The canal joined the Birmingham Canal at Horseley Fields, Wolverhampton, and opened on 8th May, 1797. The work included the building of Chasewater reservoir, that was built as a canal feeder reservoir. The canal followed the contours of the land, to avoid the building of locks. Some of the canal boats were wider then usual, because they didn't have to pass through narrow locks. They were unique to this canal and were known as 'Amptons' after their destination, Wolverhampton. Being a contoured canal and following an extremely circuitous route, it became known as "The Curly Wyrley".

Gilpin Arm was built in about 1800 by William Gilpin, an edge tool maker at Wedges Mills near Cannock, to transport coal, iron and limestone to his mill. William Gilpin and his son, George, traded as William Gilpin and Son, Wedges Mills, Cannock. They had several pits that were connected to the arm by tramways. By the 1840s the arm was no longer in use. When the area was redeveloped in the 1970s, in the form of the Ryders Hayes Estate, Gilpin Crescent was named after it.

The Hussey family of Little Wyrley were farmers and landowners who acquired a lot of land in the Pelsall area. In about 1790 their land was purchased by Abraham Charles, from Kings Bromley. He also purchased Pelsall Hall, where his descendants lived until 1917, by which time they owned about one third of Pelsall Parish. The Charles family had acquired the mineral rights in some areas and greatly benefited from the growth of the coal mines. They extended the hall and purchased other properties including a house called Peolsford, which was used to house families of Belgian refugees during the First World War. In 1917 the family sold their property in the area including the hall, which was purchased by the Health Authority and converted into a tuberculosis sanatorium.

In 1836 a national system of Poor Law Unions was established under the terms of the Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834. The Unions were groups of parishes that provided for the poor in their area. Pelsall became part of Walsall Poor Law Union.

Industrial Growth

Thanks to the canal, it was now much easier to transport heavy items in and out of the village. This led to the growth of local industries and an increase in the population, as people moved into the area to find employment. In 1801 the population was 477, which increased to 1026 in 1841. By the 1840s nearly thirteen percent of the local population were nail makers, many of whom lived in Allen’s Lane and Heath End. There was also Thomas Otway, who was listed as a nail factor with a large house and a mill, presumably a slitting mill.

Many coal mines opened in Pelsall, both shallow mines, where the seams lay a few yards below the surface, and deep mines. The coal lay between layers of shale and sandstone. The larger mines included Pelsall Hall Colliery, which had a tramway leading to a canal basin and wharf, and Goscote Old Colliery, which was beside a canal wharf. There was also Blue Fly Pit, which was known locally as ‘The Lemmie’. Accidents were common and many people lost their lives. In 1859 the winding machinery at Pelsall Wood Colliery went out of gear, resulting in one fatality, and in 1871 three people lost their lives when part of Highbridge Colliery, owned by Elias Crapper, flooded. In 1870 there had been an explosion in the colliery that resulted in two men and a boy being buried alive. They were rescued, but one of the men was badly injured.

The most serious mining accident took place at Pelsall Hall Colliery on 14th November, 1872 when water broke into the old workings. The cage could only be brought to the surface once, leaving many trapped miners underground. A vast amount of water had to be pumped out before the men could be reached. Two pumps were quickly set up, along with a large bucket that could raise 25 cwt of water at a time. Around 60,000 gallons of water were removed hourly for seven days, amounting to about 6½ million gallons.


The accident at Pelsall Colliery. From The Illustrated London News.

It was thought that the trapped men were in the shallow workings and that trapped air could keep them alive. Large numbers of relatives and friends waited at the pit head for news, and on the third day, Sister Dora arrived from Walsall Cottage Hospital. She lived with the waiting relatives, and distributed blankets and food at the pit head. She did everything possible to support and comfort them at that terrible time. Twenty one bodies were eventually recovered, and were buried together in Pelsall Churchyard, where there is a memorial obelisk of Aberdeen granite. Unfortunately one of the bodies, that of John Hubbard, was never recovered, but the local community got together to raise money to help the victim’s families, which included the selling of specially printed memorial cards. A total of £84 was raised. Hillside Crescent and Hill Wood, which were built in the mid 1960s, now occupy much of the colliery site.

There were two foundries in the area, Yorkes Foundry on Lichfield Road which closed in the early twentieth century, and Ernest Wilkes’ brass and iron foundry in Mouse Hill, close to the canal, which closed in 1978. The business was founded by Joseph Wilkes in 1852. His son Ernest took over when he retired. Joseph and his wife had six children before moving to ‘The Sycamores’ in Church Road. Ernest purchased a number of properties in 1917 when the Charles family sold the Pelsall Hall Estate.

Pelsall’s best known heavy industrial site was Pelsall Ironworks, which stood on Wood Common, alongside the canal. The factory opened in about 1832 and was owned by Wolverhampton banker, Richard Fryer, along with several adjacent coalmines. The ironworks gained a reputation for producing the best quality bar and sheet iron.

Richard Fryer died in 1846, and Boaz Bloomer, J.P. a prominent industrialist from Holly Hall in Dudley, joined forces with Mr. Davis to form Davis and Bloomer. They purchased the ironworks and expanded the factory and the collieries. Boaz Bloomer’s family had been in the iron trade for several generations. He was born in 1801 and married Catherine Hornblower, on 15th December 1825 at St. Thomas’s Church in Dudley. They had eight children: Caleb, Boaz Jr., Esther, George, Giles, Prudence, Sarah and Benjamin. Catherine died in 1849. Three years later, Boaz married Emily Treffrey.


From Harrison, Harrod & Company's 1861 Directory and Gazetteer of Staffordshire.

In 1865 Boaz Bloomer purchased Davis’s share of the company and began to run it with his son, Boaz Jr. It became the Pelsall Coal and Iron Company. By the 1870s, several hundred men worked there, which caused a rapid rise in the local population. Many of them moved to the Heath End and Pelsall Wood areas with their families. A lot of the new employees had come from the Ironbridge area. Coal was transported to the factory by a network of tramways, and also from a canal basin, next to Pelsall Ironworks. By 1872 there were forty puddling furnaces, two blast furnaces, seven mills and forges, a gas house with a gasometer, and limekilns. The Pelsall Coal and Iron Company’s products were sold throughout much of the world including Canada, China, India, Norway, Sweden, and the United States.

Ironwork was hard physical labour, and liquid refreshment was essential. Beer in buckets was brought to the factory from the Free Trade Inn in Wood Lane. The men were partly paid in tokens that had to be exchanged for goods in the company’s ‘tommy shop’ in Wood Lane, near the canal bridge, where employees could exchange tokens for goods at a lower cost than in a regular shop.

Boaz Bloomer was a staunch Wesleyan Methodist and a generous benefactor to the village. He supplied the land for the building of the Wesleyan Methodist Church in 1858, which stood in Chapel Street, and largely funded its construction. When the church opened on 14th July, 1859, he was made treasurer. His son Ben Bloomer was church organist.

 

Boaz also contributed £750 towards the building of the minister’s house and gave £1,000 towards the building of the Wesleyan day school in Chapel Street in 1866, where he became Sunday School Superintendent.

In the 1880s Chapel Street was developed by the Bloomer family, who built houses for company employees, near to the chapel and school.


Pelsall Ironworks.

The ironworks and the collieries acquired a rail link to the London and North Western Railway in 1865, and an interchange basin was built to transfer coal from barges to the railway.

In the 1860s Boaz Bloomer opened a reading room at the iron works in which newspapers and periodicals were available for the employees to read. He believed in the importance of education, and in the late 1860s introduced a scheme to help company employees pay their children’s school fees. He soon made it a condition of employment, that all employees’ children had to go to school. In 1870, Boaz Bloomer and his family had a large house built at 46 Church Road, called ‘The Sycamores’, which was later occupied by Ernest Wilkes, a brass and iron founder.

Boaz built another large house in the 1870s called ‘Riddings House’ which stood on the corner of Wolverhampton Road and Wood Lane. In 1900 it was owned by local mine owner John Starkey, and then acquired in the 1920s by George Harrington, a local baker. There were tennis courts in part of the grounds that became the headquarters of the first Pelsall Lawn Tennis Club. After lying empty for some time, the house was demolished in the 1950s. The coachman’s house still stands in Wood Lane. Boaz died in 1874 in Kensington, Middlesex. After his death, his sons continued to run the business.

Boaz Bloomer Jr. lived in Grove House, which was later occupied by Joseph Bullock, Managing Director of the Pelsall Coal and Iron Company. Groveside Way now stands on the site of the house. 

The Pelsall Coal and Iron Company remained profitable until the recession in the iron trade in the 1880s. The factory began to open only one week in every three, and by March 1891 it was £3,647.11s.7d. in debt. In 1892 the bank demanded the repayment of a £20,000 overdraft, which pushed the company into liquidation. The collieries were sold to the Walsall Wood Colliery Company, and Bilston Steelworks bought much of the plant in the factory. The buildings and chimneys on the site were demolished in the 1920s when many locals came to watch the spectacle. The site is now part of Pelsall North Common.


Chapel Street in the 1930s. From an old postcard.

The Growing Village

The village became less isolated with the coming of the railway in 1849, which changed many people’s lives. The building of the South Staffordshire Railway was authorised by an Act of Parliament on 3rd August 1846 that allowed the construction of a railway line from Dudley to Lichfield via Walsall. It was designed by civil engineer, John Robinson McClean, who obtained a lease for the line on 5th August, 1850. He agreed to operate the line for 21 years from 1st August 1850.

The first section between Bescot Junction and Walsall opened on 1st November, 1847, followed by the opening of the section to Wichnor Junction, on the Midland Railway, on 9th April, 1849. The line started at Dudley and ran through Wednesbury, Walsall, Rushall, Pelsall, Brownhills, Hammerwich, Lichfield, and Alrewas, to Wichnor Junction. The final section from Walsall to Dudley Park opened 8th May 1850 and was extended to the new railway station at Dudley in 1860. Pelsall Railway Station was roughly half way along Station Road, near to where the public footpath is today.

 

From the London & North Western Railway's timetable, August 1874.

In 1861 the lease for the South Staffordshire Railway was transferred to the London and North Western Railway Company, who then operated the line. The company took it over on 15th July, 1867 and it became part of the London and North Western Railway. As the local coalfields closed, the pits at Cannock responded to increased demand and so Highbridge and Ryders Hayes Junction became a marshalling yard for coal trucks from the Cannock pits. By the 1920s and 1930s the junction had become extremely busy and so was a prime target in World War 2 for German bombers, in an attempt to cripple coal supplies to Birmingham and Coventry. They were attacked in a bombing raid, but the bombs missed their target and destroyed a house in Highbridge Row. Luckily there were no injuries. The Row was demolished in 1964.

Brownhills Railway Station closed in 1965 as a result of the Beeching Report, although the line continued to be used for goods until 1983. The track bed is still in use today, for leisure. In 2000 the section from Walsall to Pelsall became part of the Sustrans National Cycle Route and in 2018 it became part of the 'McClean Way' named after John Robinson McClean.


Looking towards Station Road in the early 20th century. From an old postcard.

As the population increased in the 1860s, affordable houses were built at Heath End and in Wood Lane, and the first shops were built in Norton Road, which supplied the villagers with their every day needs, including food, clothing, and household goods. The wealthier members of society had houses built in Chapel Place (now Chapel Street) and later in Ashtree Road.

In the 1860s and 1870s Heath End rapidly grew due to the establishment of a brickworks and two collieries in the area. This led to the building of back to back terraces around Princess Street that stood between Walsall Road and Victor Street. They suffered from poor sanitation and a crude water supply, having just a single communal tap that supplied water to 20 or 30 houses.

The population of Pelsall in 1851 was 1,132, which had grown to 2,928 in 1881. Around 1885, Miss Hussey of Wyrley Grove opened a free lending library and a night school in Highbridge (now Lichfield Road) and closed the Railway Colliery Hotel. She had it converted into houses and improved the adjacent buildings.

By the 1890s, Pelsall’s shopping area was well developed. The 1891 census lists the following shopkeepers and their shops in Norton Road:

William Clark, grocer; William Gilbert, butcher; Ernest Haldane, draper; James Harrison, hairdresser; Richard Lane, greengrocer; Moses Palmer, tailor; Edward Sluter, the postmaster; Harry Smith, druggist; Edward Trimingham, chemist; and Joseph Williams, stationer and picture framer.

By 1891 the local population had grown to 3,364. Pelsall Parish Council was formed in 1894, and three years later took over the care of the common land. By the end of the century the village had become almost self-sufficient; with its local council, shops and amenities, and an identity of its own.


Norton Road. From an old postcard.

Churches and Chapels

The earliest known church in the village was in Paradise Lane, near to Pelsall Hall. The church, known as St. Peter’s, had an area of land that was farmed to fund a priest.  The land had been given to the church by William de Keu in 1311. During the short reign of King Edward VI (1547-1553), an attempt was made to introduce the Protestant faith to England, based on churches in Switzerland and Germany. During the campaign, churches were inspected to determine the value of property and goods, and Catholic trappings were taken away. When Pelsall church was inspected, the plate and vestments were removed by Richard Forsett, and only the two church bells in the steeple were left.

The roof of St. Peter’s Church collapsed in 1762, and in 1763 the church was rededicated to St. Michael and All Angels. On the 7th November of that year, the first burial took place in the new graveyard next to the church in Paradise Lane. The first person to be buried there was Edward Wiggin. The old graveyard can still be seen today, next to Pelsall Hall. The site has been tidied and grassed-over, but a few of the old headstones have survived. They have been placed against the brick wall on the left-hand side of the site, next to the drive that leads to the hall. Stebbing Shaw describes the church as 'small and ancient' in his 'History and Antiquities of Staffordshire' published in 1801. The half-timbered vicarage was further along Paradise Lane and had a thatched roof.

The church could only seat 174 people and so was too small to cope with the growing population. The decision was taken to build a larger church in the village that could seat around 600 people. The foundation stone for the new church in Hall Lane was laid on 7th June, 1843 and building work was completed in the following year. The new St. Michael and All Angels Church was built of plain brick, and initially had no tower. When the church opened, the old church in Paradise Lane was demolished. The church tower, built some years later, was a gift from Mrs. Sarah Dickenson, who provided the clock and a peal of five bells. A sixth bell, added in 1920 was a gift from Mrs. J. S. Charles. In 1848 a vicarage was added at a cost of £1,000, but this fell into a state of disrepair and was demolished in 1980. The chancel was added in 1889 and a new organ was installed.

The first Methodist chapel in the village opened at Heath End in 1830. It was replaced by a new building in 1869, but was never a great success. The trustees were often faced with bills from costly repairs, especially in 1905-6 when the cost of renovation work amounted to £103.13s.10½d., a considerable sum at the time. A pipe organ was also installed at a cost of £50. The congregation dwindled in the late 1940s when the old houses at Heath End were demolished and the people were re-housed elsewhere. The chapel closed in 1959 and was soon demolished.

In 1836 another Methodist chapel opened in Station Road, after a petition had been sent to the local authority, stating that although the local population was rapidly increasing due to the growth of ironworks and collieries, there was no provision for education. If permission could be granted for the building of a chapel, a school for children of all denominations would also be built on the site.

Joseph Fletcher, an inspector of schools was sent to Pelsall to investigate, and reported that due to the poverty of the poor nail makers and miner population of this remote neighbourhood, nothing but extraneous aid will ever meet their case. Thanks to his report, permission was given for the building of the chapel and a school, which were built for £260. In 1858 the school came under Government control and received its first certified teacher in January 1859. The Wesleyan chapel and the school were a great success, so much so that they couldn’t cope with the demand.


St. Michael and All Angels Church in Hall Lane. From an old postcard.

A larger Wesleyan Methodist chapel opened in Chapel Place (now Chapel Street), on 14th July, 1858. It was largely funded by Boaz Bloomer who ran the Pelsall Coal and Iron Company. He supplied the land on which the church was built and contributed £750 towards the building of the minister’s house. He was made church treasurer, and his son, Ben Bloomer, was church organist.

Boaz Bloomer also gave £1,000 towards the building of the replacement school, which opened in 1866 in Chapel Street. Boaz became Sunday School Superintendent. The school was enlarged in 1895 and continued as a day school until the mid 1960s.

The chapel was renovated in 1904 at a cost of £660, and survived until demolition in 1970. By this time the chapel had  taken over the old Wesleyan day school and amalgamated with the worshipers from the Primitive Methodist Chapel in Paradise Lane, which had opened in 1853. A large extension was added to the church in 1970, which is now known as Pelsall Methodist Church.

The old chapel in Station Road, became known as Central Hall and remained in use as a community centre. The Mutual Improvement Society had a reading room in the building, and the Wesley Guild, the Pelsall United Friendly Society, and the Parish Council held meetings there. In 1923 a concert and a billiards room opened in an extension at the back of the building, and the hall became the headquarters of the local A.R.P. wardens in the Second World War. It has now been demolished.

Education

Some of the older inhabitants remembered a Dame School and a Poor School in the village that charged 4d and 1d per week, respectively, for lessons. Although the Employment Act of 1842 prohibited children under 10 years of age, from working in the mines, many families could not afford the education fees.

In 1845 St. Michael and All Angels Church applied to the National Society for a grant towards the building of a National School, which could cater for 133 pupils, with a residence for a master. A site for the school was provided next to the graveyard. The estimated cost of the school was £432.4s.7d., which included the £95 grant from the National Society and £110 that was given locally. Pelsall National School opened in about 1848. In 1865 there were 180 pupils being taught in one room by a master and a mistress. Large numbers of children started at the school from the age of three, which led to an acute shortage of accommodation. In 1870 the room was divided into two smaller rooms by sliding doors.

In 1881, after the passing of the 1880 Education Act, which led to compulsory education for 5 to 13 year olds, a new boys’ school was built alongside the existing premises to accommodate 230 pupils. Free schooling did not happen in the village until 1891, before which, a two pence a week fee was charged for each pupil. Another room was added in 1891, and in 1895 there were 395 pupils. In 1907 the school became Pelsall Church of England School.

In 1916 the infants were moved to a new council school in School Lane and in 1931 the original school building was demolished to make way for a new infants block. In December 1965 most of the staff and pupils moved to the new school that opened in Maple Road in 1961. The old school continued in use as an annexe until 14th December, 1977.


Station Road. From an old postcard.

Into the Twentieth Century

In 1901 the population was 3,626 and more shops opened, in order to keep pace with growing demand. In High Street in 1908 the shops were occupied by shoe makers, bakers, a grocer, a tailor, and a beer seller. In 1909 gas mains were laid in the village, and in 1924 electricity cables were added. The village’s first regular bus service to and from Walsall began operating in 1925, and in 1934 Pelsall came under the control of Aldridge Urban District Council.

By the 1950s there were many run-down and dilapidated houses in the village and so the local authority started a slum clearance programme. In 1952 Pound House in Paradise Lane was demolished. It stood next to the village pound where the stray animals were kept. Other demolitions at the time included the old chapel, the old vicarage, and Paradise House in Paradise Lane, which had been a large house with a picture of Adam & Eve above the front door. Another casualty was a row of terraced houses known as Slate Row, in Church Road. They had once been occupied by nail makers, ironworkers and miners, and in 1895 a resident died from typhoid. There were also several cases of diphtheria.

Another casualty was Pelsall Farm, a large three storey building off Charles Crescent with a cottage attached.  It had twelve acres of land, including meadows and two ponds with ducks and geese. In 1952 the council purchased the estate from Mrs Wallace of Little Wyrley Hall for £2,000 and rented the land to a local farmer. In 1964 the site was redeveloped for housing and Charles Crescent was built on part of the site.

Oaklands House was a large house in Station Road that had been owned by the Binns family, and previously by Thomas Starkey, when it was known as Victoria House. In 1956 Aldridge Urban District Council purchased the house and grounds for £3,000. The grounds were sold for redevelopment in 1962 and the house was demolished and replaced with the Pelsall Community Centre building, which is there today. The Pelsall Community Association, which is based at the community centre, was formed on 1st July, 1946 to serve the local community. The community centre was officially opened by Sir Alfred Owen, CBE. on 4th September, 1965. In 1974 the building was extended when the Oaklands Lounge & Bar were added. Activities at the centre include adult dance sessions, keep fit classes, Taekwando, ladies' kickboxing, art classes, embroidery classes, and mother and toddler sessions. The site includes a bowling green and tennis courts.

There were several working farms in the area until the late 1940s, but most of the land has now been used for housing development. In the 1960s a large number of council houses were built on the Ryders Hayes Estate between Ryders Hayes Lane and Railswood Drive, and in 1970 much of the old housing and the New Inns pub near the end of the old Gilpin Arm were demolished and replaced by the modern estate.  The pub began life as a beer shop and afterwards became the headquarters of the local pigeon flying club. By 1940 it had become a general store.

In 1966 Pelsall became part of Aldridge and Brownhills Urban District Council, and on 1st April, 1974 it became part of Walsall Metropolitan Borough Council, which was formed following a local government reorganisation.

The old fingerpost at the junction of Norton Road and Lichfield Road still remains, after being restored in the 1980s by Bert Kellitt, for the local Civic Society. Pelsall also has a Millennium Stone, marking the 1994 millennium of the village. Since July 1972 Pelsall has had an annual carnival which was originally a week-long event. It is very popular and features decorated floats, many outdoor events on the common and indoor events at the community centre.

The main shopping area around Norton Road and High Street continues to thrive. There are card and gift shops, dry cleaners, estate agents, fish and chip shops, flower shops, food shops, hairdressers, The Queens pub, and much more.

The population is now over 11,000. It is listed as 11,505 in the 2011 census. A valuable asset to the local people is Pelsall Village Centre, in Highfield Road, which opened in 2012. Sadly Pelsall Library which was based there, closed in 2017 as part of Walsall Council’s cost-cutting plans. Luckily a team of volunteers now run the Pelsall Book Exchange there, where people can sit in comfort to read books, or borrow them.

Pelsall is still a very pleasant place to live, partly because the open areas have been well protected and preserved over the years. The North Common Local Nature Reserve is an important asset, consisting of wet heathland and a wonderful variety of wildlife from butterflies and bees, to many species of birds and mammals.


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