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Pelsall, West Midlands (England)

English Village

Last modified: 2021-05-29 by rob raeside
Keywords: west midlands | pelsall |
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[Flag of Pelsall] image by Pete Loeser, 25 May 2021
based on this image provided by Philip Tibbetts, 20 September 2009

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Introduction: The Village of Pelsall

The village of Pelsall is situated in the suburbs of the Metropolitan Borough of Walsall in the West Midlands. It is located 4 miles north of central Walsall and about seven and a half miles from the cathedral city of Lichfield. Pelsall was first mentioned in 994 when it was among various lands given at the death of a Mercian noblewoman named Wulfrun to the monastery at Heantune (modern Wolverhampton). It is also mentioned in the Domesday Book (1086) as Peolshalh, meaning "a nook of land between two streams," as still belonging to the church. In the following years the village stayed rather small with a small cluster of houses built on the fringes of some common land, this continued well up into the 19th century.
A Methodist Chapel and school were opened in about 1836, and a larger church named St Michael and All Angels Church was built in 1844. Small shops gradually became established around the village centre as the population became larger.
Economically, Pelsall become a coal mining village as the area was rich with deposits of coal and iron ore. Iron works and foundries and pit mining followed during the 18th and 19th Centuries. This led to the cutting of a canal to move the coal and iron ore in 1794 which opened up the area for further industrialization. However in the late 1890s most of the pits became unworkable because of flooding and were closed (the last closed in 1977). In 1872, 22 miners died in a mine disaster. They are buried underneath a polished granite obelisk in the churchyard of St Michael. After the World War II most of the farms outside of the village disappeared and it has slowly filled in with new housing and the village has become a suburb of Walsall.
Pete Loeser, 25 May 2021

About the Pelsall Village Flag

The village of Pelsall is located 12 miles north of Birmingham, West Midlands, in the area traditionally known as the Black Country. The village was founded in 994, as recalled by the Millennium Stone erected in 1994. Pictures of the village can be seen on the Pelsall Online website. The village has remained famous for the Pelsall Hall colliery disaster of 1872, in which 22 men and boys lost their lives. The mine was flooded on 14 November, probably after a miner inadvertently pierced an old, forgotten gallery. It took six days to pump the water and recover the bodies of the dead miners. The funerals took place on 25 November and attracted several sightseers to Pelsall, described as "a dull dreary and desolate village with its bare bleak common of swags and pitfalls". Fifteen widows and forty-five orphans were helped by a fund set up in the village. The record of the disaster was published by A. Thomkinson and was put in electronic format by Alan Dean for the Cannock Chase Mining Historical Society.
According to an article in their local paper, the Express and Star:

"On 9 October 2006, a unique flag made especially for the village of Pelsall has been torn down from its pole and stolen by thieves. The flag was snatched from its position in High Street between 6.30 last night and 10 am today. The pole itself has been damaged by fire and the manual pulley destroyed beyond repair. The black and white flag cost £100 and was designed by former villager David Pugh. It celebrates the surroundings of the area and features a bridge with a canal passing beneath and greenery. The flag was officially unveiled at Pelsall Carnival in July and has since been flown at full mast on a permanent basis."
So, thanks to whoever stole the flag, we know that Pelsall has a flag, or had a flag.
Ivan Sache, 16 October 2006

A scan of the flag was provided to me by Councillor Gary Perry. He has indicated that Pelsall may look to fly the flag again.
Philip Tibbetts, 20 September 2009