Wolverhampton's  Listed Buildings

Clock Tower west of Ash Hill House

Ash Hill

Listing: Memorial clock tower.  1926 for Davis Green.  Inscribed with verses from Annie Hilda Green's poem "The Silverdale Clock Chimes".  Note:  this tower was built in the garden of Ash Hill House for Davis Green (a local industrialist) as a memorial to his first wife Annie Hilda Green who died in 1926.  The inscriptions are verses from her poem The Silverdale Clock Chimes. (Listed 15 July 1999)

Comment:  Ash Hill House was a large Victorian pair of residences.  It was knocked down in the 1960 and replaced by a much smaller and rather dull house.  But the very extensive gardens remained and it was in these that this clock tower had been built.  Its chimes could be heard all round the district. 

Nick Hogben writes:  Annie Hilda Green was born in Wandsworth on 29th March 1882 and married Davis Green in Silverdale, Lancashire, on 20th April 1904.  She died at Ash Hill House on 3rd. July 1926.  The poem, The Silverdale Clock Chimes, was written in May 1925 and reads as follows:

A merry round
Of cheerful sound,
I mark the time
In tuneful rhyme.


Good people all
Praise God and pray,
Should ill befall
He'll be our stay.



Do well thy work,
Brief is our span
Shun idle talk
It helps no man.



In storm our peace,
Our strength in stress,
Love holds us fast
Till warfare's past.



The loving mind
Doth solace find
When days are ill
In loving still



Blow wind, turn tide,
Fall rain, shine sun,
Joy doth abide
Where work's well done.



Jesus our Lord
Hung on the Cross,
He shed his blood,
He died for us.



'Tis sweet to rest
'Neath summer sky
To watch the trees
Sway in the breeze.


The gardens were designated as a conservation area.  This did not stop developers buying the whole site and applying for planning permission to build houses all over it.  Nor did it stop the city council granting the planning permission.  The developers then saw fit to make a new application for considerably more houses.  But even the council baulked at that.  So now the smaller number of very large houses is being built.  Many of the trees are being kept but the character of the conservation area is entirely gone and its use as a nature corridor very much reduced.  But this listed building is being restored and should, one day, start chiming again.