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Nostalgic city scenes on film and canvas

By Black Country Bugle  |  Posted: February 16, 2014

By Gavin Jones

  • The unmistakeable Guy Indian head

  • A floral scene in the centre of town

  • Cows heading for market, through the centre of Wolverhampton

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LAST week we took a look at some wonderful colour paintings of a rather romanticised Wolverhampton, courtesy of local historian and author Ian Bott.

They were taken from a booklet in Ian's collection, entitled Where Industry and Agriculture Meet, published in 1953 by the Wolverhampton firm of Guy Motors, with the aim of persuading those from outside the area that this was very much a town with beauty both within, and on its doorstep.

The artist responsible for those images was Maurice Bradbury, and the booklet contains more of his work, one example of which we reproduce here. This one is entitled Market Day Scene, and was probably based on a photograph, so realistic does it appear.

The statue of Prince Albert in the middle distance proves that the scene was Queen Square in the middle of the town – imagine the modern day city being brought to a standstill as a herd of cows is ushered through the streets to market.

Among the traffic waiting patiently for the cows to come home are two trolley buses – a subtle reminder of Guy Motors, producers of the booklet.

The image at the bottom of the page, again from the same booklet, is a photograph, though every bit as colourful as the Bradbury painting. Looking across the flower beds next to the Art Gallery, it takes in the war memorial and, this being a Guy Motors publication, captures a green and yellow bus trundling along Lichfield Street.

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