CLAYHANGER WALSALL WOOD CATSHILL
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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
The Village is two and a half miles SW of Shenstone.
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.
St Peter's Church from the North West.
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