Smethwick’s heritage celebrated in community open day

, September 7th, 2017

Smethwick Rolfe Street station will be celebrating its history on Sunday 10 September by teaming up with a historic local landmark to host a Heritage Open Day.

During the free event, held as part of the national Heritage Open Days festival, Smethwick Rolfe Street and Galton Valley Pumping Station are being showcased as two of the area’s industrial gems. The two sites are a short walk from each other and can be easily accessed by following signage on Smethwick’s towpath.

Smethwick station exhibition gets its first visitors.

Smethwick station exhibition gets its first visitors.

From 1030 to 1530, visitors are being invited into the railway station’s new exhibition space to learn about the central role it has played in the local community throughout the years. The station building, which still boasts original Victorian design features, offers a fitting environment for event attendees to learn about the changes it has undergone since it was first built in the 1890s.

As well as special activity sheets, offering children the opportunity to colour in the station’s new mural, visitors will be presented with special rail tickets as a souvenir of the day. The event will be hosted by Peter Chapman, customer service assistant at London Midland.

Peter Chapman, customer service assistant at London Midland, commented: “Smethwick has an incredibly rich history here in the heartland of the West Midlands. The railway and pumping station are both icons of Victorian engineering and we’re welcoming everyone to come along on Sunday and learn a bit more about the history of their local area. ”

Faye Lambert, head of community rail at London Midland, added: “It has been a fantastic year for Smethwick Rolfe Street station and the local community has been instrumental in its transformation. The new mural stands as an example of cultural unity and the work undertaken by Sandwell College to transform the exhibition space is second to none. What better way to experience first-hand all the effort that’s gone into making the station a community hub, than at Sunday’s Heritage Open Day”.

As no booking is required for the Heritage Open Day, visitors may simply arrive at the station at any time between 1030 and 1530.