Tag: History

“As steals the morn….”

a morning meditation piece

As steals the morn upon the night
And melts the shades away:
So Truth does Fancy’s charm dissolve
And rising Reason puts to flight
The fumes that did the mind involve
Restoring intellectual day.

Written and first performed in February 1740. So cold that February, apparently, that the theatre owners had to reassure their audience that there would be fires and blankets – just like here in the Gardens!

Another beautiful song that I’m sure must have been performed in the tranquil rural retreat of the Gardens.

G.F Handel’s oratorio:  L’Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato (“The Cheerful, the Thoughtful, and the Moderate Man”) .  Based on poems by Milton and Shakespeare’s verses from the Tempest

The pictures here are not our Gardens, but just imagine!

Mark Padmore – tenor Lucy Crowe – soprano The English Concert,  Conductor – Andrew Manze Label: Harmonia Mundi, from the Album: “As Steals the Morn (Handel Arias & Scenes for tenor)”.


Faces of Castle Bromwich during the 2 World Wars – Birmingham Heritage Week

What was life like on the Bradford Estate and in the village of Castle Bromwich during the First and Second World Wars?

This day will include a mix of participation, re-enactors and community created exhibitions, spitfire stories and contemporary portraits of the re-enactors from our 40s event alongside photos from the ‘real’ 40s in the area.

We’ll be gathering reminiscences of working and living near the Spitfire factories, asking people to ‘fess up’ to scrumping and climbing the walls of the Gardens before it was rescued.

You might even find the maze transformed into a first world war trench… once you’re in can you find you way out?

The event is part of an ongoing community created local history project about Castle Bromwich, the Gardens and the immediate area during the First and Second World Wars.

Appropriate for all generations – be part of uncovering our histories.

We hope to have some tours of the Church, Gardens and Hall, as usual, Details are still to be finalised – please check back here nearer the date

Normal entrance fees apply £4/£4.50 (plus Gift Aid) available at the door. Gardens open at 12.30.

Tours and Garden entrance Free for Garden Members




Fruity stories: Fruit picking, Women and the First World War – a talk for Birmingham Heritage Week

A truly fascinating and amusing talk about how life changed for so many people during the first world war. So essential was jam to the troops that the whole fruit picking industry was rocked with change ... and women from the city arrived too! Jenni Waugh is co-auther of the well researched book "how the Pershore Plum won the War"

Read more

Hall, Church and Gardens tours

Birmingham Heritage Week this year runs from the 8th -18th September. So full of heritage is the Second City that it extends, by 7 days, the dates of the National Heritage Open Days .

St Mary & St Margaret Church 2 (Bradford Estates)This year we are working with St Mary and St Margaret’s Church and the hotel at Castle Bromwich Hall to offer visitors the chance to see all three historic parts of the Bradford estate.

There will be a guided tour of each site including (for those who wish it) a tour of the tower and famous bells in the church tower. Although the Hall is accessible to guests, this is a chance to see some of the magnificent plaster ceiling work and other areas not easily accessible otherwise.

Tours can be taken separately or in series.

The main series:   1pm Hall, 1.45 Church , 2.30 Gardens  (please start at the Garden entrance to purchase your ticket and tour ‘tokens’)

There will be second tours at the Hall: 2pm. Gardens: 3pm and the Church will take informal tours all afternoon.

Please note the Tower can take only 4 or 5 people at a time – ask the Church wardens on entrance.

Normal Entry fees apply  £4/£4.50 (plus Gift Aid). Tours free

You will be given ‘tour tokens’ to exchange at the entrance to each tour.

Can’t make that day? 

The Church will be open on Sunday 11th September in the afternoon for drop-in tours and trips to the tower…also as part of  Heritage Open Days.

..and don’t forget the Gardens have regular , free guided tours around the Gardens on Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday (2pm) during the season.


A bit of Castle Bromwich Hall Garden History


Just the other day over on our Facebook Page, North Arden Local History Society left a post for us with this photograph.

This is Peter Clarke, first head gardener at Castle Bromwich Hall Gardens in 1985, the year the gardens reopened. The Photograph from the Birmingham Mail…

I wonder. Does anyone remember the gardens back then? Do you have photos you could share with us?