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Tettenhall (previously known as Totehala and Totenhale and pronounced "Tett-Null") is a historic village within the city of Wolverhampton, England. The name Tettenhall is probably derived from "Teotta's Halh", Teotta being a person's name and Halh being a sheltered position. Tettenhall became part of Wolverhampton in 1966, along with Bilston, Wednesfield and parts of Willenhall, Coseley and Sedgley.
The Battle of Tettenhall in 910 was the turning point in the battle against the Danish Viking invaders by the united forces of Edward the Elder of Wessex and Ealdorman Æthelred of Mercia. It saw the crushing defeat of the last of the large Danish Viking armies to ravage England, including the deaths of the Danish Kings, Eowils and Healfdan. In more recent times, the north part of the village became known as "Danescourt".
The original "Teotta's Halh" was likely situated in the sheltered area below the ridge where the church stands. This area, around Lower Green, was the original inhabited area of Tettenhall. In early English (Anglo-Saxon) times, as the place name evidence tells us, there were many cleared woodland areas - areas where field and settlement would have been commonplace. These can be seen today by the place name ending "ley", from early English "lēah", meaning woodland clearing; Wrottesley being one such example in the local area. Where most of the land was wooded, below the ridge ran, as it does today, the river Smestow - though at this time, it was a larger stream than it is today, running through extensive marshy ground.
Tettenhall has an old parish church, St Michael and All Angels, located at the base of the ridge, leading off Lower Green. An exact founding date for it is not known, though records of a fourteenth-century dispute over village land tell us that the church had been founded during the reign of King Edgar - some point between 959 and 975 AD.:9 The Domesday Book of 1086 informs us that before the Norman conquest, Tettenhall was held by three Englishmen - Hunta, Wulfstan, and Godwin. Of course, as with the majority of England, post-conquest, William the Conqueror gave the land to his followers.
There is a variety of pear known as 'Tettenhall Dick', named after Tettenhall, originally found in the hamlet of Perton and dating to earlier than the 18th century. These small, dry pears are traditionally used for the making of perry. The Bees & Trees charity began a scheme to plant 2,000 Tettenhall Dick trees across the Midlands in a bid to save them, as very few of them existed any more. These trees were grafted from existing Tettenhall Dick trees, and the scheme has proven to be a success, with trees being planted in a variety of different locations. The variety is now part of the National Fruit Collection at Brogdale.
The original route of the London to Holyhead road ran through Tettenhall, though on a different course from the current A41 Tettenhall Road. The road, when heading north east from Wolverhampton, ran behind the shops at Newbridge, on bridges over the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal (when built in 1772) and the river Smestow, then across to Old Hill, where a steep climb was had for any carriages on route. The road then cut across Upper Green, swayed left into Wrottesley Road as far as Woodthorne Road, and then continuing on as the present Wergs Road.:39 This route, because of the problems associated with carriages traversing the steep Old Hill, was looked at in the early 19th century by the Wolverhampton Trust and Thomas Telford, with a view to engineering a new route - either around, under, or through the ridge. Due to a dispute, Thomas Telford dropped out of the plans, leaving the Wolverhampton Trust to go it alone. The preferred method was a cutting through the ridge, with the course of the road sloping up on a gradual gradient from near the Newbridge area, cutting through and rising above Lower Green, before the direct cutting through the ridge to come out next to Upper Green. The spoil from the cutting through the ridge is what was used to create the incline of the road. Work was completed in 1823.:41
Tettenhall is one of the few places in England to have two village greens. Tettenhall Upper Green is situated on high ground near the edge of a ridge that runs in a broadly east-west direction, from Aldersley to Perton. The Upper Green has a large paddling pool, an extensive open grass area, a cricket pitch, practice nets and the Wolverhampton Cricket Club Ground, where W. G. Grace visited and played. The area is common land that was donated by the Swindley family to the people of the parish. A clock tower, built in 1912 by the local Swindley family and donated to the parish to celebrate the coronation of King George V, is a key landmark in Upper Green.
The A41 road runs through the village green as a single-carriageway road. Tettenhall was previously an Urban District in its own right, until most areas became part of the Borough of Wolverhampton in 1966, with some areas of the district being placed within the present South Staffordshire district. Despite the relatively close proximity to Wolverhampton's city centre, Tettenhall retains its rural village character and a strong sense of identity among its residents.
The village has tried to gain independence from Wolverhampton Council and has made plans to return to a parish council but this has no longer been pursued.
The King's C.E. School, formerly Regis Secondary School, is a voluntary aided Church of England school for 11- to 19-year-olds, in Tettenhall. As part of the BSF programme, the school was refurbished and now incorporates Tettenhall Wood Special School onto its site.
Christ Church Infants and Juniors are linked to the church of the same name, situated in Tettenhall Wood.
St Michael's CofE School and Woodthorne Primary School are also located here.
Tettenhall has strong connections to Wolverhampton and Dudley with buses running every 9 minutes in the week and on weekends only to drop to a 20 minute frequency on evenings. There are also buses to Compton and Telford.
Tettenhall also was served by three railway stations which were on the former Wombourne Branch Line. The stations that served Tettenhall were Dunstall Park, Tettenhall and Compton Halt. The nearest railway station to the village is Wolverhampton and Bilbrook.
There has been talks about opening a new station on the edge of Tettenhall on the Shrewsbury-Wolverhampton Line.
The Tettenhall Transport Heritage Centre is the first transport museum in the City of Wolverhampton and is found in Tettenhall.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Tettenhall.|
- Darby, H. C.; Versey, G. R. (2008). "Staffordshire". Doomesday Gazetteer. Cambridge University Press. p. 387. ISBN 978-0521078580.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 8 October 2006. Retrieved 5 July 2007.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- Encyclopædia Britannica, "United Kingdom: the reconquest of the Danelaw"
- Hancock, Geoffrey, A Tettenhall History (1991)
- "Orchards, Trees & Orchard Produce - Staffordshire" at England in Particular Archived 2011-09-28 at the Wayback Machine
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 7 October 2011. Retrieved 23 March 2011.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- Yates's map of 1776
- "Funeral for hanged TV presenter". BBC News. 28 April 2008. Retrieved 30 April 2008.