Elmdon Heath

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Elmdon Heath
Grid reference: SP162807
Location: 52°25’29"N, 1°45’44"W
Post town: Solihull
Postcode: B91
Local Government
Council: Solihull

Elmdon Heath is village which has become a suburb of Solihull in Warwickshire, about a mile to the north of the town centre. It is primarily residential, though there are a few shops, a garage, a community centre a secondary school, a primary school and a church centre. The area is centred on the Damson Lane thoroughfare and the Greville Arms public house. In addition to this there is a further pub at the Red House.

Elmdon Heath is on the edge of the vast conurbation spreading out from Birmingham and engulfing Solihull. It bordered by the Land Rover's Solihull Plant to the north-west, by Solihull to the south, and by the open countryside eastward. The canal emerges here into the green country left to Warwickshire – the first village in free countryside along the canal is Catherine-de-Barnes, less than a mile east of Elmdon Heath.

The village

The houses of Elmdon Heath were largely constructed between the 1930s and 1950s, though infill development continues apace. Much of the residential land was previously farmland until it was commandeered during the Second World War.

A church, named St Francis of Assisi, once stood on Cornyx Lane. It closed when the rector was relocated and no substitute was offered. The abandoned church was vandalised repeatedly, ending in its burning down and so it has been demolished, and the land redeveloped as houses.[1]

The Grand Union Canal runs through the area, and Elmdon Heath used to be the site of Solihull Wharf, which is now remembered only in the name of Wharf Lane. A large gasworks waited on Wharf Lane. This was demolished by British Gas and replaced with their national offices. When these were moved to nearby Blythe Valley Park the land became available for development, as a very large new estate of high-density housing has been constructed, which has more than doubled the population of the area. Local residents met this with mixed opinion, some believing it was a good use of the land, while some thinking that the estate is an eyesore, the new 'bright orange' buildings standing out against the more traditional housing.