Golden memories of Bilston

Memories of Bilston's proud history came flooding back to scores of people when they visited a special exhibition in the town.

Memories of Bilston's proud history came flooding back to scores of people when they visited a special exhibition in the town.

Bilston's civic life, its schools, people, parks and magnificent industrial heritage were all on display in a series of rare pictures.

The Black Country Memories Club, which started in 2000 and boasts 130 members, organised the event at Holy Trinity Social Club in Price Street.

A total of 76 people attended, twelve of whom were paying members of the public who forked out £1 to see the exhibition.

Some of the grand old pictures on display included classic pictures of Bilston Steel works in Spring Vale, which was owned by the reknowned Hickman family from 1866.

Civic life also featured strongly, including pictures of Bilston Town Hall and the town's Mayors stretching back decades.

Old politicians were also pictured, including the town's former Labour MP Bob Edwards who proceeded Lord Turner and was first elected in 1955.

Bilston might be one of the region's great old industrial towns, but the exhibition also sought to show the other side of the area.

The room was littered with pictures of old junior football teams and glorious patches of green land such as Hickman park.

Reg Aston, of Wombourne, the display organiser, said: "We've got so many pictures here, showing every aspect of Bilston that you can think of.

"From the parks to the football teams, to people in public life and schools, you name it, we've got it. All of this stuff goes into storage by members of the club, but we wanted to put it on display.

"We've had a great reception from visitors, and it just goes to show how people care deeply about the town. It does bring back a lot of memories."

The exhibition also had various quirky bits of memorabilia, like minutes of all the old Bilston council committee meetings between 1962 and 1963.

Megan Fitzgerald-Plummer, vice-chair of the club, said: "We put on three or four different events a year, and people always appreciate it.

"A lot of these old pictures were from books or given to us, and we've kept them for days like this."