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We used to live in the Hoo Arms, Tipton

By Black Country Bugle  |  Posted: December 05, 2013

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I FOUND the article on the former Hoo Arms (November 7 edition) most interesting as I, and previously my husband worked in preserving this historic building from 1969 when in 1968 the council had placed a Closing Order on it.

We were successful so my husband Harold Harris, who was born there and was a gas fitter for Tipton and also an artist could live out his life there which was until 1982.

After this I kept it going until 2007 when my arthritic problems and inability to do expensive repairing, mainly the veranda, I came out of it.

Shortly after the Council put on an 'unsuitable for habitation until repairs necessary done', so I was able to be re-housed in my present flat after a short stay in hospital.

The building on the land is to be sold. The Black Country Living Museum were very interested in it and thought it had much historic interest.

As a student of architecture the building pre-dates by far the 19th Century.

It had a special type of fireplace set back with a beam of oak which the former owner, my husband's father, removed for safety.

There is much of earlier period within the house.

Also it has the hand made tiles and where next door's bungalow is was the stables. I did know about the Hoo family as I researched where I could. I believe it was something called a 'Court Leet.'

The Bilston Road was a continuation of the Gospel Oak Road and was a coaching road, and the inn would have been special at that time which I believe to be somewhere about 1750 or even before.

In the outer area there is a well. The end of a canal came to the bottom of a long garden and there a spring was covered on Myrtle Terrace.

I myself come from West Bromwich, born on the High Street.

I had lost my home and therefore supported my husband over his possible loss.

We had many happy but difficult years, both practising our gifts of art.

During the later years, 1992, I was able to paint my later mural 'John and Charles Wesley' for West Bromwich Library to add to the Chaucer murals which I did for them in 1945-49.

My interest in the latter mural came because it is possible that in the early 18th century John Wesley was preaching in the area and the Hoo Arms would have been a very convenient inn on a lonely road with stables for his horse and a canal and in the vicinity where the local brew could be delivered to them.

I'm sorry all my lovely trees and wilderness is gone but am happily painting away.

My best wishes to you.

Patricia Arnett Harris,

19 Brewery St, Tipton.

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