STONNALL
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Stonnall is  a small picturesque village which has been unaffected by the Industrial developments which went on over Shire Oaks Hill, in Brownhills and Walsall Wood. The area is still very rural and is mainly farm land.
The Village is two and a half miles SW of Shenstone.

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The Church of St Peter in Stonnall.
The church of St Peter in Stonnall was built in 1822 as a chapel of ease to Shenstone Parish and remained within the Parish of Shenstone until 1845 when it became a parish in its own right.A stone Chancel was erected in 1843.
Stonnall is divided into 2 by the Chester Road, Upper Stonnall being on the Aldridge side is in an area which rises up very steeply to Castlefort, or, 'Castle Field' as it was described in Pigots Directory of 1835. There was once a Castle or Fortification there, but whether it was early British or Roman it is unknown.
Lower Stonnall is where the main village is situated and at the far end the Church. In 1831 the population of the Parish of Shenstone was 1,827.

The Chester road which divides Stonnall dates back to the middle ages. It was little more than a cattle drover's track, a wide track down which Welsh cattle were driven to markets in the Midlands and as far as London.
The name, 'Chester Road' is a little confusing as the 'Old Chester Road', ( which passes through Stonnall and Brownhills) is really an alternative route to cross South Staffordshire from the road that runs through Shenstone and Lichfield. This alternative route for coach travellers and Drovers, turns off the at Castle Bromwich, runs over what used to be Sutton Heath through Stonnall and Ogley Hay, then joins the Watling Street at The Rising Sun in Brownhills. Chester bound travellers then continued along the Watling Street to Weston Under Lizard where they turned off towards Chester.
In John Ogilby's roadbook of 1657 the road between London and Chester was described as one of the most frequented in the Country.It was known as the Coach-road because it was a good road for Coach Travellers. It was an long journey in those days as it took 6 days to travel from Chester to London travelling from dawn to dusk, the Coaches were pulled by 8 horses to get them through the mud. It was a complete days journey from Whitchurch to Stonnall, the Coaches resting up for the night at 'The 'Irish Harp'.
The Old Irish Harp is situated on the Chester Road at the crossroad with the Aldridge-Little Aston Road. The pub is more than 350 years old and is in an area which has been a farming community for 100's of years. The local landowners would collect the rents at The Irish Harp ,from the Tenant Farmers every 6 months. The Harp is worth a visit if you are looking for a excellent meal in historic surroundings.

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St Peter's Church from the North West.


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