Alvechurch

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Alvechurch
Chip Shop, Alvechurch.jpg
Tudor Rose Fish Bar, Alvechurch
Alvechurch is located in Worcestershire
Alvechurch
Alvechurch
 Alvechurch shown within Worcestershire
Population 5,316 
OS grid reference SP025725
   – London  99 miles (159 km) 
Civil parish Alvechurch
District Bromsgrove
Shire county Worcestershire
Region West Midlands
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town BIRMINGHAM
Postcode district B48
Dialling code 0121
Police West Mercia
Fire Hereford and Worcester
Ambulance West Midlands
EU Parliament West Midlands
UK Parliament Bromsgrove (Conservative)
List of places
UK
England
Worcestershire

Coordinates: 52°21′02″N 1°57′53″W / 52.35056°N 1.96472°W / 52.35056; -1.96472

Alvechurch is a large village and civil parish of Bromsgrove district, in the northeast of the county of Worcestershire, England. Lying in the valley of the River Arrow, the nearest city is Birmingham, 17 km / 11 miles to the north, with the closest towns being Redditch, 8 km / 5 miles to the south and Bromsgrove, 9.5 km / 6 miles to the west. At the time of the last UK Census in 2001 the population was 5,316.[1]

History[edit]

Alvechurch means The church of the Lady Aelfgiva, possibly a relative of King Athelstan. King Offa gave the land forming the parish to the local church in the late 8th century. The parish is mentioned in the Domesday Book. In the 13th Century the Bishop of Worcester built a palace in the village, and a weekly market and an annual fair were established. The Bishop's Palace was pulled down in the 17th century, the only remnants being part of the moat and a yew tree which formerly stood in the palace grounds.

From the 19th century to the mid twentieth century there was a brick factory in the hamlet of Withybed on the edge of the village. Other local industries included nail and needlemaking. Dellow cars were made in Alvechurch between 1949 and 1956.

Architecture[edit]

The village has a number of medieval half-timbered buildings, as well as a plethora[citation needed] of Georgian, Edwardian and Victorian buildings.

The church of St Laurence dates back to 1239.[2] It is situated on high ground, and was probably the site of an earlier Mercian church, although nothing remains of the earlier wooden building. Much of the church was rebuilt between 1858 and 1861 by William Butterfield. There is a 1,348-pipe organ. The tower has a peal of eight bells, rung regularly by the North Worcestershire and District Change Ringing Association. These bells are in need of repair and, after a five-year fundraising project,[3] work is due to start in January 2012. The Ark, a £1m extension to the church was built in 2005 despite a village referendum in February 2004[citation needed] voting against the erection of the building.

Alvechurch railway station was built in 1859. There are also many newer residential buildings and a First and Middle school with library. In 2008 a new first and middle school were built north-east of the village, the old school has since been demolished and the new estate has road names commemorating the house names of the school.

Arts and entertainment[edit]

There is an attractive arts and crafts style Baptist church in the centre of the village.

There is also a renowned local amateur dramatic society which produces two plays per year at the village hall. [4]

Alvechurch Football Club was founded in 1929 and played in the local park prior to a move to Lye Meadow. They reached the Third Round of the FA Cup in 1973, losing 4-2 to Bradford City. In November 1993 they folded, but a group of supporters resurrected the club in 1994.

Travel and transport[edit]

The M42 motorway runs across the north side the village; the nearest junction is north of the village at Hopwood junction 2.

Alvechurch station is on the Cross-City Line. It serves local trains to Birmingham, Lichfield and Redditch. The station is un-manned. On 1.9.14 a passing loop and second platform was completed and officially opened.

The village is accessible by narrowboat along a rural canal. Alvechurch Marina is on the Worcester and Birmingham Canal (built 1789) is just across a hedgerow from the station.

The A441 road used to pass through the village, but now a relief road by-passes the village, helping to reduce traffic and pollution. Recently, specific traffic-calming measures have been added to the village's main thoroughfares. These 'pinch-points' reduce the road width to one raised central lane, preventing drivers from speeding and promoting considerate road use.

Alvechurch F.C. play their home games at Lye Meadow on Redditch Road.

Famous people[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]