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Bromsgrove: The Story of a Market Town

Order your copy of our new history of Bromsgrove

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The Bromsgrove Society's new book Bromsgrove: The Story of a Market Town was published on 9th April 2022.

The book is written by well-known local historians and Bromsgrove Society members Jenny Townshend and Julian Hunt, and chronicles the history of Bromsgrove over the last one thousand years. Based on extensive original research, the authors present an exhaustive account of the town’s development, from a medieval settlement to a prosperous market town and industrial centre whose influence extended across the whole of North Worcestershire.

This major new work will appeal to all those who know and love the town, providing an evocative trip down memory lane. Running to 320 pages, the hardback book is lavishly illustrated with drawings, maps and photographs, many of which have not been published before. Its scholarly and detailed treatment will appeal to local and family historians, as well as students of economic and social history.

The opening chapters look at Bromsgrove's geographical setting and its early evolution. Bromsgrove is mentioned in the Domesday Survey of 1086, when it was described as comprising 18 hamlets and the manor belonged to the king. After a charter to hold a market was granted by King John in 1199, Bromsgrove emerged as the principal market town of north Worcestershire. Around this time the church of St John the Baptist was built, standing on a hill overlooking the town.

Early industries and trades, such as tanners, maltsters, clothiers and linen manufacturers, are all described. Nail-making - the district's best-known trade – was first recorded in the 16th century, and by the 19th century exploitative conditions within the nail trade attracted national attention and strikes ensued. Bromsgrove's strategic position on the road, canal and railway networks helped shape the town's development. Other chapters deal with aspects such as the Poor Law and workhouses, schools and schoolteachers, health and welfare, housing, and the town's rich religious history.

The book is priced £25 and is available from our Bromsgrove Bookstall (links to external site). Postage & packing is £3.50 within the UK (additional charges apply for overseas).


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