~ Gallery - Dwellings ~
The Ellowes
Ellowes Hall c1900
The Ellowes was used by the Home Guard during the Second World War.
Sedgley Council considered purchasing the Ellowes Estate as early as 1919.
The wooded area south of Ellowes was known locally as 'The Rookery', although there are no Rooks there now, it's possible that there was at some time past.
Ellowes takes its name from 'Ellen Valle' (Valley), this is marked on a 18th century map of 'Gwarnell' as running along the low lying area of the Cotwall End valley or 'dingle' which the Hall overlooked.
Cora Goffin, 1902-2004.
from an old cigarette card.
Some scenes of the silent film short 'Romance and Reality' (1921) starring Cora Goffin and Isabel Jeans was filmed at the Hall.
Charles Mitchell was the owner at that time, a fete in the grounds was used for one of the crowd scenes.
The film, directed by Harry Lambart was based on the novel 'The Cradle of the Washingtons' by Arthur Branscombe.
The film made use of many locations, including Althrop and Sulgrave Manor, in a production write-up in 1922, it mentions "At such old world places at Penn, Sedgley and Albrighton, the company has captured the most scenic backgrounds for the screen." .
The film was sold off to America in 1922, and appears to have long since disappeared?
Local legend has it that the 'Grey Lady' haunts the Ellowes grounds and School, she is said to have drowned in the pool after a coach overturned at the bottom of the drive, although no record of this has been found.
Apparitions and ghostly sounds of galloping horses have been reported.
Who was the 'Grey Lady'? There is a similar tale of a 'Grey Lady' that haunts the Dudley Castle grounds.
This story possibly was perpetuated by past owners of the Hall to discourage local folk from trespassing on the estate.
In the Birmingham Post newspaper of 1865, there is a note to the editor regarding the history of Sedgley from an anonomous source that states:
"OLD ABBEY - On the estate of 'The Ellowes' or 'Eblavales'[sic], the property of Major Barrows, are the ruins of a very ancient chapel, which probably was formerly constituted a cell to Dudley Priory, but I have been unable to meet with any record of it; however, there is reason to believe that some MSS. in the library of Oscott College would throw light on it".
A small farm called 'Abbey Farm', in the grounds near the gully from the ornamental ponds was partly destroyed by fire in 1919.
This could well be connected with the previous statement.
The Farm was little used after this time, the ruins were demolished to make way for the new school playing fields in 1966.