About keithbracey

Brummie poet, historian, writer and blogger AKA #BrummieBard Please read my Birmingham Blog from downtown Bearwood at https://keithbracey.wordpress.com Twitter: @1truclaretnblu and Facebook: Birmingham: The City of Enlightenment Villa and Bears fan and Moseman through and through although my fave AVIVA Premiership team is Wasps @Ricoh

Christabel Pankhurst and Smethwick

Suffragette leader Christabel Pankhurst and @SmethwickMuseum

The Iron Room

Less than a fortnight after the Armistice of the Great War, a Bill was rushed through Parliament which allowed women to stand for election to Parliament on equal terms with men, ‘ironically allowing those women aged between twenty-one and thirty years to stand for a parliament they could not elect’.[1] The previous year, after disbanding the Women’s Social & Political Union, Emmeline Pankhurst and her eldest daughter Christabel formed the Women’s Party. This new organisation represented their political views which now conflated the winning of the war with the women’s cause. Emmeline explained that women needed a party of their own because ‘men had grown so accustomed to managing the world in the past that it had become rather difficult for women in politics to hold their own if they were associated with men’.[2] Emmeline declined the chance to run for election in favour of her daughter and eventually it…

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RTM adds to report on plans for the Camp Hill rail line

#Birmingham’s Camp Hill rail line is to be reopened with new stations at Moseley, King’s Heath and Hazelwell……#BrumIsBrill

Our Birmingham

David Lowe draws attention to theRailway Technology Magazinewhich adds to the reportin the Birmingham Mailabout the plans to reopen the Camp Hill rail line from Birmingham city centre to Kings Norton to passenger services, discussed for decades. The line was last used by commuters in 1941 and the stations bulldozed. But the tracks remain in use by freight services.

As the Mail comments:

“Congestion from this part of the city into the city centre is one of the huge drawbacks for what are otherwise thriving areas – undoing the rail closures seven decades ago will be a huge step in tackling both congestion and the clean air challenge we all face.”

RTM explains that the key obstacle to a fully functioning passenger service is that New Street is already operating at full capacity. There is no room for extra trains.

Proposals in the Midlands Rail Hub…

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Charles Rennie Mackintosh

90th Anniversary of Charles Rennie Mackintosh the great Scottish artist, designer and architect……

The Iron Room

This blog is to remember the 90th anniversary of the death of Charles Rennie Mackintosh, who died 10 December 1928.

There’s a wonderful illustrated letter [1] in Archives & Collections in the Gaskin collection, MS 2945, from Joseph Southall about a visit he and Arthur Gaskin made to Charles Rennie Mackintosh and Margaret Macdonald in about 1905.

Dearies, [2] both of you

Tis so pleasant to get your letters in the morning & to hear that you feel better. Well I am having a busy time here but very interesting & of course it is flattering to hear that one is well thought of including you my dear — all this in fact we seem looked upon as one.

We went for a game this morning such pretty links I did not shine with borrowed clothes & club tho’ I put my man 5 down.

Well last night we…

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Emma Archer – Botanical Works

Emma Archer art exhibition at Lightwoods House in Bearwood……

The Bearwood Blog

Lightwoods HouseDecember 9th – 22nd
Artist Emma Archer left her native Birmingham nearly a decade ago to immerse herself in a new life in the Italian countryside. By that time she’d spent a decade on the front lines of the British art scene and was ready for something else entirely. Her lifelong passion for Italy led Emma and her partner to acquire a derelict farmhouse, which they lovingly and painstakingly restored using traditional methods and materials.
Emma took a break from her artwork to start a family and cultivate the land attached to the farm. Finally, Emma developed a beautiful studio overlooking her olive grove, where she returned to drawing and painting. It’s as idyllic as it sounds and the beauty of Emma’s surroundings inspired her new work. Gone are the urban cityscapes of her post art-school Birmingham days, replaced with the languid-cool, lazily-listless, vibrantly-vivid watercolours and acrylics of…

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Creative responses to First World War archives: Men Beat the Walnut Trees

Creative writing in response to #Birmingham Archives and Heritage Great War archives

The Iron Room

On Friday 14th September 2018, here in Archives & Collections at the Library of Birmingham, we held a Creative Writing workshop using First World War archives.

This was a free hands-on Creative Writing session hosted by Birmingham historical novelist and biographer, Fiona Joseph, and Corinna Rayner, the Archives & Collections Manager. Archive material at the Library of Birmingham had been specially selected by Fiona and Corinna to inspire the writers, and it provided a unique opportunity to explore some of the many archival treasures themed around Women at War (Home Front, Industry) and Conscience at War (Quakers, patriotism and pacifism). We had so much material out, including family letters, photographs, posters, postcards, news items and memorabilia from the period which participants could use as a springboard for their own creative responses. Writers at any level, including beginners, were welcomed. For this year’s Explore Your Archives week we thought we’d share…

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