The History of Great Barr Hall

The first meeting of the new season on Thursday 14th March was a talk by Mr Vincent Shacklock, Conservation Officer for Walsall. he told of his investigation into the history of Great Barr Hall and its Park. Slides revealed the delights of woodland walks, water and wild flowers - so near to the grinding motorway and urban sprawl. Less pleasing was the sight of the Hall itself, vandalised and semi-derilict. Built in a style described as "Strawberry Hill Gothic" (a style said to have been thus dubbed by Horace Walpole), enough remains to show that it was perhaps more curious than beautiful; but certainly of sufficient historic interest to justify saving.

The 'running down' of St Margaret's Hospital and this Government's fiscal policy towards capital assets, will call for great vigilance if this valuable example of Repton landscaping is to be saved for future generations to enjoy its "surprise concealment and variety". this was indeed an incomplete story, authoritatively told.

Ivor Mitchell
March 1985