|Willenhall is a typical Black Country manufacturing
town, which unlike others has managed to retain its
traditional atmosphere in this post-industrial era. Many
of the lovely old buildings still survive, as does the
only surviving intact Black Country shopping centre.
Although known for its once numerous lock and key
manufacturers, there were large numbers of factories and
workshops that produced a wide range of items. Luckily,
enough of them have survived to retain the look and feel
of a manufacturing town.
The town is home to our national lock museum, the
Locksmith's House, which is an excellent place to
visit. Exhibits include a local lockmaker's house, and workshop,
and an important collection of old locks.
What follows is a description of the town's history,
from it's earliest mention in the 8th century, to modern
times. Throughout the centuries many changes have taken
place during the area's transformation from extensive
woodland to manufacturing giant, known throughout the