Heritage Weekend – great success

As a contribution towards the national Heritage Open Days, the Society had a special display at the Local History Centre of the 1817 Enclosure Map of Knowle, a large and delicate document which is not usually put out for display. At one point the event drew capacity numbers upstairs in the library. Also proving to be a continuing success were our newly created photo albums exhibiting copies of all our photographic records, which would otherwise have to be requested one by one for viewing.

Dodwell Exhibition

The first in our planned series Local Wartime Heroes, tells of the heroic actions of Thomas Brierley Dodwell DSO DFC and can be viewed in our Local History Centre upstairs in Knowle Library until the end of June.

Thomas was born at Grove Farm, Grove Lane, Knowle on 2nd January 1897, son of Henry Dodwell, farmer and eminent County Councillor and Elizabeth Brierley daughter of Charles and Elizabeth Kimbell. He joined the RAF on 19th April 1918 and in the period before he was shot down on 16th August 1918, he had completed 64 missions over the lines, survived four crashes and several forced landings. His flying career ended when his plane was shot down and had to be ditched in a mined area of the Weilingen off the coast of Holland. Thomas was so badly wounded that his arm had to be amputated and he was then interned in Holland.

Come and see our exhibition and find out more about Thomas’s exploits and the amazing act of bravery he committed which led to him being; mentioned in dispatches, receiving the DSO and being the only member of the RAF to receive the American DFC in the 1st World War.

Knowle Landlord’s notorious daughter

Come and see the story in our latest exhibition in the Knowle Local History Centre!

Dorothy Ward, star of pantomime and theatrical comedy was born in Birmingham and once lived in Knowle. Her father was landlord of ‘The White Swan’ public house in the late 1890s. The White Swan was situated where the NatWest bank now stands. Dorothy was purported to be “The Most Famous Principal Boy” ever. Perhaps not just famous but infamous might also be applied to Dorothy whose theatrical life had an element of notoriety about it. Come and see our exhibition to find out why.

New exhibition on show

Knowle Lodge on the corner of Warwick Road and Lodge Road was demolished and replaced by a large estate of homes built by the Bowser brothers. This exhibition is a fascinating view on that recent history and the dwellings of hundreds of Knowle’s residents today.

Heritage Open Day – Saturday 12 September 2009

This annual national free event opens buildings to the public which are not normally open to view. This year in Knowle the church tower will be opening for visits. As a contribution to this event, The Knowle Society is making available for viewing some of its archives, in particular its always popular Scrapbooks of Knowle. These are becoming delicate books and are not normally available for close examination.

The Local History Centre team will be showing a selection of the many old scrapbooks from the archives which chronicle Knowle village life from the early 1900s onwards. Some of the very oldest have now been scanned and will be available to view on-screen.

In addition, the current exhibition ‘Henry Tonks, Surgeon & Artist’ born in Solihull, will be available to view and will be so until the end of September.

Both events take place in the History Centre, upstairs in Knowle Library, Saturday 12th September 2009, 11am-4pm.

All Welcome! All Free!