Express & Star

See unveiling of blue plaque marking 100 years of Tipton's famous Pie Factory building

It was a day of celebration and nostalgia as a Sandwell pub and restaurant received historical recognition.

Staff member Laura Jones shows off the new blue plaque at Mad O'Rourkes Pie Factory

A large crowd gathered at Mad O'Rourkes Pie Factory in Tipton to see the unveiling of a blue plaque on the outside of the building.

The plaque was commissioned by Tipton Town Libraries Local History Group in partnership with the Tipton Civic Society to celebrate the centenary of the building.

It had started out as the Five Ways Hotel in 1923 when it was built, then renamed as the Doughty Arms after a councillor of the same name in the late 1920s, before being converted into the Pie Factory in 1987.

The event at the Pie Factory brought people from across the community together to hear a talk from local historian Steve James before he and members of the history group unveiled the plaque from behind a Black Country flag.

Pie Factory owner Pete Towler said he had been approached a month ago about having the plaque added to the building.

He said: "There's some people from the local history groups who do this sort of thing and I was approached about a month ago, as they wanted to put it on there for posterity and for the fame aspect of the Pie Factory, which I was very honoured by.

"We've always thought it was an iconic place, with even the bus stop across the road having 'Pie Factory' on the tickets, and when you consider where it came from, it has become one of the most well-known places in the West Midlands.

"It's a great honour to be as popular as we are as we're full all the time and we haven't changed what we do and still carry all the traditional touches, so the plaque is a lovely honour."

Manager Jena Morris said it had been a good day, with lots of people in celebrating and a lot of reminiscing about the pub.

She said: "It's an honour to have the plaque on the building and celebrate the history of it and we had a big party, with everyone around enjoying themselves, so it was a great day."