Pictures from the past: Wolverhampton through the years

By Andrew Turton | Wolverhampton nostalgia | Published:

Picture from the past is an Express & Star feature giving you the chance to look back on bygone days.

A sale at Beatties in January 1969

Today we feature sights around Wolverhampton including early market places, Queen Square and the creation of the ring road.

Here we take a look at these 12 images from across the decades.

If you know any more information about the images featured please contact us via

A snapshot of Wolverhampton throughout the years

Flags have been erected along Victoria Street, Wolverhampton for The Queen's Coronation

1. This picture is believed to show preparations for The Queen's Coronation in 1953. Flags have been erected along Victoria Street, Wolverhampton. The hotel of the left is the Star and Garter Hotel, which stood where the entrance to the Mander Centre is today.

Wolverhampton's Dudley Street in February 1971

2. Traffic flowed through Wolverhampton's Dudley Street when this picture was taken in February 1971


Wolverhampton Ring Road on August 12, 1970

3. The fourth stage of Wolverhampton Ring Road pictured from the tower block of Wolverhampton Polytechnic, in Waterloo Road. The Molineux Hotel and Wolves ground Molineux are at the top in this view taken on August 12, 1970.

Wolverhampton's Queen Square, or Market Square, in around 1857

4. Wolverhampton's Queen Square, or Market Square as it was then known, looking towards St Peter's Church, in around 1857. The landmark statue of Prince Albert mounted on horseback had yet to be erected, with a cannon which had been seized in the Crimean War standing on a plinth in its place.


Mayfair Cafe in Stafford Street, in July, 1950

5. This evocative picture captured the all-night Mayfair Cafe in Stafford Street, Wolverhampton, in July, 1950.

The Patch in the shadow of St Peter's Church in 1957

6. This site was known as The Patch and was situated in the shadow of St Peter's Church. It shows Wolverhampton's market taken in 1957. It was the place where people reputedly hunted at their leisure for the 'cheapest and the best' goods.

Wolverhampton Market

7. An undated view of Wolverhampton Market. If you know any information about the people and stallholders featured in this image and period it was taken please get in touch via

Wolverhampton Ring Road on July 12, 1968

8. The remainder of section three of the Wolverhampton Ring Road – between Darlington Street and Waterloo Road – came smoothly into operation on July 12 1968. Only minutes after the last workmen left the road, traffic wardens stepped out into the middle of the Waterloo Road/Bath Road junction and transformed the former two-way section of the ring road into a one way carriageway, and opened the new section to traffic coming up from the Chapel Ash direction to Waterloo Road.

The British Rail car park in Station Drive, Wolverhampton, on September 4, 1969

9. The British Rail car park in Station Drive, Wolverhampton, on September 4, 1969. Regular users of Wolverhampton High Level Station's car park were preparing to petition British Rail for better facilities. Parking fees were set to rise - but the state of the car park remained in a poor condition, with uneven surfaces, no parking lines and bits of metal protruding from the ground; reminders of the days when it used to be a shunting yard. The cost of a day's parking was going up from 5s, to 6s, for people not travelling by train, and 2s. 6d. to 3s for rail passengers.

The sunken garden in the middle of its Penn Road roundabout junction

10. The controversial Wolverhampton Ring Road had a sunken garden and subways in the middle of its Penn Road roundabout junction. In July, 1966, Wolverhampton Corporation wanted to build another sunken garden at the junction of Darlington Street and Chapel Ash. However, many people thought that the gardens were pointless. A small study showed that between 9.30am and 11pm on a Thursday, just 36 people passed through the gardens and only three of them stopped to sit down on the benches.

Wolverhampton Ring Road in April, 1976

11. The fifth section of the Wolverhampton Ring Road was under construction when this picture was taken in April, 1976, with new gantries, railings and traffic lights springing up as the alterations took place. The British Waterways Broad Street depot is in the background to the right.

The Bedford Williams store

12. The Bedford Williams store was set to leave these premises in Victoria Street, Wolverhampton, when pictured here in December, 1972. The shop planned to move into new premises at the Mander Centre

A sale at Beatties in January 1969

13. It was the open season for sales at Beatties in Wolverhampton in January, 1969, as determined housewives were joined by a few brave men hunting for bargains in the clothes department. Suits were a snip at £6.

Andrew Turton

By Andrew Turton
Digital Journalist

Digital journalist based at the Express & Star's head office in Wolverhampton. Interested in breaking news and social media. Get in touch on Twitter @aturton_star or


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