~ Gallery - Amenities ~
Gornal is not exactly an attraction for outsiders, but perhaps there is at least a couple of reasons to know where Gornal is?
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The Driving Test Centre, Lower Gornal.
Many good and bad memories will be held of the place following their visit to The Driving Test Centre in Lake Street, Lower Gornal.
Since the 1960's this rather unobtrusive building has been the dread of learner drivers from all over this part of The Black Country.
The Centre was closed on Wednesday, 15th of May, 2019, and has been relocated to Newton House, The Pensnett Estate, Kingswinford.
The building is currently being altered.
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Coopers Band Road entrance, 2007
Gornal Wood Crematorium.
For the same reasons, Gornal Crematorium, on the outskirts of Gornal Wood will not provoke many good memories.
The Crematorium was commissioned and administered by Dudley Council, it was officially opened on 1st. October 1960, with landscaped memorial gardens and entrances in Cooper's Bank Road and Forge Road.
The adjacent cemetary had already been in operation since 1955.
Gornal 'Crem' is one of the most well-kept and attractive of its kind.
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Infectious Diseases Hospital
Before the intense mining had begun in the Cotwall End Valley known as the Dingle, Sedgley Urban District Council built an Infectious Diseases Hospital near to Conquerer's Farm.
Very little is known about it.
The Hospital building was located North of Conquerer's Farm, and just off Cotwall End Road, the Hospital is shown on an Ordnance Survey map c1905 but is not present on earlier or later maps, the Hospital was apparently only used in the short-term.
Sedgley Board, had decided not to join with Dudley, and procure their own infectious diseases hospital according to a newspaper report of February 1877, the Board deciding on a joint venture with to join the Coseley district, and providing their own.
The Infectious Diseases Hospital at this time was attached to the Workhouse (The Workhouse later became Sedgley Police Station), however it was severly damaged by a storm in 1877 and apparently no further use was made of it.
A newspaper of 1872 reported that a 'hospital' at Gornal Wood treated Small Pox patients, and reported inmates 'escaping' into the community!
It is not known if that report refers to the Hospital near Conqueror's Farm or even that of Sedgley, but it seems likely that it could have been located elsewhere at that time.
A news snippet in the Dudley and District News on Saturday 2nd September, 1882, reports; "If there were any [small pox] cases at Sedgley there was an Engine House which might be utilised for the accomodation of patients."
Was this part of the choice of Cotwall End Valley, where there may have been a pit 'engine house'?
1894, Birmingham Daily Post, 29 June.
Sedgley
Small pox, two fresh cases have occurred at Upper Gornal. The infectious diseases hospital has recently been completed, but the local Board has not yet definitely decided whether it shall be for the reception of patients.
Subsequent reports up until 1893 indicate that there was still no hospital at Sedgley.
It is probable that the Infectious Diseases Hospital near Conqueror's Farm was built shortly after 1893 as the report opposite implies.
Small Pox, Typhoid and other diseases were rife in the district in the 1870s causing many deaths especially in infants due to poor sanitation.
See the page on the Typhoid epidemic.
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The Royal British Legion Social Club
The British Legion Social Club in 2019
Ruiton Street, Lower Gornal
The British Legion was founded in 1921 to support ex-service personnel principally after the Great War, it was granted a Royal Charter in 1925, and is most associated with Poppy Day.
The Lower Gornal branch of the British Legion was formed in early 1933, and in June 1933 the standard was dedicated at St. James' Church. The parade was headed by the Gornal Excelsior Brass Band and attended by hundreds of people.
At this time the Woodman Inn, Gornal Wood was the headquarters.
Officials were Captain W.E. Gibbons (President), Mr B.A. Hemmings, Mr A.W. Moss and Mr W.H. Harlow (Standard Bearer)
The Gornal 'Legion is one of a great number of social clubs spread throughout the UK and beyond.
The original club building, set back further from the road, was a wooden hut probably constructed in the early 1950s, however the present club buildings were erected in 1966, featuring a large function room.
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Medical Centre, Bull Street, early 1970s.
The Medical Centre, Bull Street.
In 1971, the new purpose-built medical clinic in Bull Street, Gornal Wood, was completed at a cost of 24,000.
The Medical centre was previously located in Bank Street.
Local residents refer to it as 'The Doctors'.
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