St Paul's Square

Trail Location 1

When Katie was growing up, the Square was known as Titty-bottle Park, because mothers would come here to feed their babies. It was the only grass land in the whole area. You don’t see many mothers feeding their babies here today! 

Newhall Street

Trail Location 2

Newhall Street was famous for cheap food in Katie’s day. You could get cow heels, tripe, pig’s trotters, chitterlings (pig’s intestines – sounds yum!)… Nowadays there are a couple of bars and restaurants (we don’t think they serve chitterlings…!) - and not many shops.

Our school is on Newhall Street!

Home - Camden Drive

Trail Location 3

Katie lived on Camden Grove, off Camden Drive, in a back-to-back house. She was born in a poor family, with 12 siblings in total; but only 7 survived infancy. At the end of the yard stood 3 ashcans and five lavatories (or closets as people called them at the time). There was a square box in the lavatory, with a large round hole in the middle; children had to hold on to the sides of the seat, or they they could have fallen through the hole!

The house was destroyed by bombs in WWII, killing Katie’s mother and her sister Mary.

St Paul's National School

Trail Location 4

Now you have reached what remains of St Paul’s School. It is covered in graffiti but this is where Katie went to school. Teachers were ‘very stern and forbidding.’ We can infer that punishments were harsh and unforgiving.

When we first came across the school, we thought it was a church. (Which makes sense because it was a church school!!) It was very small for a school and it looked dilapidated and ghostly! Have a look through the cracks to see if you can spot any ghostly figures!

Dayus Square

Trail Location 5

This area was named Dayus Square in 2012. There is a plaque to Katie, which has some quotes form her books. Families at the time were so poor, that some children were sent to school without any underwear; Katie recalled that other children would tease them and chant ‘Mary Brown’s got no drawers, Will you kindly lend her yowers.’

Katie’s parents would dress up in their smartest clothes if they went to the George and Dragon pub – they thought it was posh compared with their regular pub, The Golden Cup!

Chamberlain Clock

Trail Location 6

When she was 12 months old, Katie was taken by her mother to see Chamberlain Clock, and hear the chimes. There are no chimes any more; and there are no longer any trams on the streets, either.

Warstone Lane Cemetery

Trail Location 7

Katie and her brother Jack were walking across a cemetery one night – probably Warstone – when they thought they saw a ghost; but it turned out it was just a gravedigger, who was working late!

Katie’s mum and sister Mary were buried in Warstone Lane Cemetery, after they were killed in an air raid in the war.

Jewellery Quarter Museum

Trail Location 8

You might like to pay a visit to the Jewellery Quarter Museum. It’s great. Katie worked for many years as an enameller, and even set up her own enamelling business.

© Midland Actors Theatre  Tel.: 0121 608 7144 or 07946 006511

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