off Bath Row


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12th March 2018

Chequers Walk


28th January 2016

My grandfather, Thomas Hawkins, lived in Chequers Walk towards in his latter years in the 1950s and 1960s.  He was a publican at various times and once kept a pub near the Hippodrome.  I think it may have been The Fox and my father remembers actors and theatre people drinking there during his youth.


He was also a bookmaker and was one mugged - allegedly by the Sabini gang - at Brighton Races. 


Thanks for setting up your website!


Stephen Hawkins


3rd April 2015


I have the same old message.... I came across your wonderful website by accident and then spent many many hours reading all the accounts of life in Ladywood and looking at the photos.  It is a great social history record and you are to be commended for setting it up.  I am Australian but have visited Birmingham many times over the past 50 years to visit relatives of my grandparents who emigrated to Australia two weeks after their wedding in 1909 and never returned to see the changes that happened over the ensuing years.


My first interest was to try and find Chequers Walk which of course is no longer on the maps.   I was taken there in 1967 by a cousin but we did not enter from Bath Row through the entrance in your photo on the Chequers Walk page.  I have an old A-Z of Birmingham so we must have entered at the Granville Street end.  My great grandmother lived there I was told and raised pigs in the front yard which was only about 3m x 3m in order to support her family after she was widowed.   I remember Britain in the ‘60s and now when I return I see the great changes in living conditions now in the Ladywood area.  I will be back in Birmingham in August 2015 and intend to visit the area again but I see in Google maps street view that I won’t find any of the houses my relatives lived in which may of course be a good thing as better housing has replaced them.


My grandfather – Eli Pearson – was born 26 Oct 1886 at 188 Camden Street Ladywood which now seems to be a Tesco Petrol Station.


He married Eleanor Moore Bannister on 20 Nov 1909 and sailed for Australia on 24 Nov 1909.  She was living at 62 Camden Street and he was living at 80 Camden Street at that time.  I have also discovered that quite a few of my family have lived in this area.  Holloway Head, Crabtree Street, Granville Street and Bath Row.


Many thanks again for your wonderful site and I would love to hear from anyone who also has similar recollections of the early 20th century.



Patricia Harvey



29th December 2011


Chequers Walk was located off Bath Row and can be seen in this photograph, the entrance is under the word "Wholesale"


How many people knew it was there?

George Bruce in the back yard of houses in Chequers Walk, 1953

Elizabeth Bruce lived at No. 24 Chequers Walk with children George, John and Judith Bruce.

George Bruce in the picture is the eldest son.

Photograph courtesy of Bryan Bates