Kingstanding Circle shops


Memories of Bernie Ryman

This is a photo of my wife with her mother out side their shop, A M OLDHAM  at the Circle Kinstanding  [ 653 kINGSTANDING ROAD].

Oldman’s on Kingstanding Circle, 1930’s . Courtesy of Bernie Ryman

Memories of Birmingham Municipal Bank, now Lloydstsb on Kingstanding Road

The newly constructed branch in 1937. Copyright David Parkes

David Parkes has produced a very interesting web site and in it he writes ‘The branch was opened on January 1st 1932 as an Evening Branch at 595 Kingstanding Road. Hours of business were Mondays and Fridays 18:00 to 20:00.
The temporary accommodation that was provided for this part-time opening was replaced by a new building, which was formally opened on October 23rd 1937 by the Lord Mayor (Alderman H Roberts). Daily facilities were then provided, and a substantial increase in transactions ensued.’

The official opening of the branch: October 23rd 1937. Copyright David Parkes

Depositors witnessing the official opening. Copyright David Parkes

Branch interior in 1937. Copyright David Parkes

More information about the bank can be seen at Mr Parkes web site at

Bank book cover. Copyright Ron Jameson

Municipal bank account book

Bank log book. Copyright Ron Jameson

Municipal bank account book


Memories of Margaret Potter

My earliest memories…. being carried by my dad to the Odeon cinema in the dark with my pyjamas on, i suppose ready to be put to bed  when they got home.   I remember Harry Rochelles the butcher on the corner at the Circle and their steak &kidney pies, my grandad Frank  Jew used to do jobs for him over the years so we got our meat from him. Clare’s the newsagent, Baines the cake shop ,  can’t remember the name of the  big fruit & veg shop there, my Nan Dolly Jew used to send me to buy loose potatoes and vegetables, there would always be a long q  of old ladies and their shopping bags .  Spuds etc. would be weighed on scales with weights  and then poured from the metal scoop into shopping bag..    Also funeral directors   further round,  Hewards  across the road.  There were trees on the Circle island  and  metal fencing round the greens  at the Circle.  Also a great fish & chip shop across the road from Odeon, a bag of chips was a 3 penny piece  and was wrapped in newspaper.

Memories of Joyce Fowle

my name is joyce Fowle of Adelaide S.A.I have a newspaper cutting sent to me from my cousin Reg Smith the brother of David Smith who contacted you about our Grandfarther Bill Wilson   who did some building of some shops in the circle  ,This newspaper cutting is of Oldham the Drapers the person did very well I Wimbush the Bakers my brother and I spent many an hour in all sors of weather in the war waiting for delivery of cakes if lucky you got one shillings worth then there was a shop in between I think it was a grocers then came Baines  Baker over  the road to Cozifit round the corner the Barbers then Lennons Drapers I worked there Mr& Mrs Lennon had one son Phillip over the road Parks  greengrocer then Jones Fish & chip shop past the funeral directors there was a chemist just before  Knights over the dual roadpast the billiard hall I think there was  aHairdressers shop on from Knights onhe corner was Mecca sweet shop round the corner facing onto the Odeon was the British Restaurant people could

buy bowls of vegs all to help out with the rations I suppose my friend and I used to go in for a  cup of tea and the treat of a Bun then there was a Fish & Chip shop.

The British Restaurant was  on Kettlehouse rd   0pposite the exit from the Odeon the kitchen where the food was cooked was at the bottom of Banners Gate road my mom worked there,it was to help out with the rations you could buy bowls of mashed potato or bowl of peas jug of gravy taking your own bowl of course. So many memories remember when we moved from Twickenham road to Rough road in 1936 the feild opposite our house on Rough road was flat it was a farm there was an old farmhouse in the top right hand corner derelict I cant remember when the water works took it over but every night during the bombing there wre so many insendery bombs wre dropped there think the gerry’s thought it was a secret weapons place lucky none of us got hit only the house in Miilburn road looked like a knife had sliced through leavng the other house standing
I lived at the top of Rough road on the corner of Hartley rd & Rough Rd till we came to Australia in 1949


Rough Road shops of Kingstanding Circle in the 1950’s. Copyright Paul

Memories of Barry Gater from the 1950’s


  1. Where Hewards is, in the 50s, was a shop called Knights. They were basically suppliers of bicycles.

    On the Circle was a shop called John Favours. It was a grocers shop and my brother and I were the delivery boys. We rode the bikes with the big wicker basket in the front. Sometimes the bikes upturned and the contents got wet. The manager then was a man called Jack Shorter. Nice man!

    Happy days.

    Arthur Thynne
    Formerly Living in Templeton Road.

    • Hi Arthur my brother used to work at knights I recall it was just down the Rd from the Coop it must have moved or did they have 2 shops also next door they opened up a food store , after school (kings rise) I worked at Lennons with Mr Lennon and his son Eric Lennon, they had a warehouse in Streetly by chicken sheds , I saved up my wages and bought a Raleigh push bike from Knights Mr Lennon had a ride on it infront of the shop,
      Eric’s Wife managed the haberdashery she made a mean
      cup of coco when it was cold ,
      Parks fruit and veg were opposit . at the back of Lennons there was a shoe shop ,on the Kings Rd there was the very famous Bains bakery every Friday we were treated to an eckles and a fairy cake my sister worked there. on special occasions I had a chocolate eclair

      My mom Mrs Morton was a founding member of the town womans guild ,
      Sunday mornings my dad would take us to Sutton park , as a treat we had Orange juice in a bottle from the milkman he used to run it under the tap to cool as we didn’t have a fridge ( how did we manage )

      • I went to Kings’ Rise 1971-1976 but I still remember Wrights cake shop and Lennon’s, I especially remember Eric. Bains cake shop was on the opposite corner on Kings road, adjacent to Cozifit, the shoe shop!! Bains was next to what I recall ‘Collins’ electrical shop!
        I recall Hewards, but I would have been knee high to a grasshopper.

      • I worked on the chicken farm you mentioned, did you go to kingsrise school ?

  2. The photo over “What used to happen at the function rooms?” is surely the old Billiard Hall alongside the police station, opposite the old Co-op and other shops.

  3. I remember the butcher’s, but most of all, the park on rough road where they had a playground. Remember the coop? My grandparents were frequent customers at the Kingstanding. We lived at 75 Rough Rd before we emigrated to America in 1954. I really remeber playing in the median of rough road that was so long you could roll a snowball all the way to the circle.

  4. I remember the Municipal Bank on Kingstanding Rd. In 1945 to 1948 I was in the RAF. I used to have part of my pay sent home to my mother who would deposit it in the Municipal Bank. When I was discharged from the RAF I went to the bank to draw out the money. The lady Teller persuaded me to leave Five Shillings in the account to keep it open, ” incase I wanted to use it sometime in the future”?? so I did. I never did use it again and I wonder if I ever received any interest on that Five Shillings. I’m now in my 80,s maybe I’m a rich man and don’t know it.

    Have a nice day, Wally.

  5. I had a black metal money box, with a gilt handle from the Municipla Bank where I saved some of my pocket money in the 1950’s. It had to be taken to the bank to be opened and the money deposited.
    I used to work on Saturdays at John Favours Grocers, and I worked at first on the biscuit section, when biscuits came in large metal boxes, and you could buy broken biscuits by weight! Later I graduated to the other counters, and I remember serving Danish butter which arrived in a wooden barrel and was cut with a wire, as was the cheese.
    I remember the butcher’s on the corner, Rochelle’s, with the brightly painted pastoral scene on the wall outside. I hated going in when I was very small, because you had to queue past sides of meat hanging on the wall, and dripping blood onto the sawdust floor. Wouldn’t pass health and safety now!
    My mother’s friend, May Barnes, was manageress at Harris’ Dry Cleaners, and my grandmother used to send me for bread at Baines’ Bakers. They were one of the last shops to have farthings in their prices!

  6. I lived in 123 Hurlingham Rd so my approach to “The Circle” was along Kinstanding Rd from Haringey Rd, past a small school/Nursery, then the Birmingham Municipal Bank, past a high wooden fence, half way along the fence was a wooden hut, The Labour Party HQ. At the end of the fence was a drive way to the Community Centre.
    The first shop was Rochelles the butcher, they also had a shop on Kindstanding Rd in the Hawthorn Rd area of shops, Johnny Rochelle was in my class at Cranbourne Rd school.
    The next shop was Harris’s Cleaners and Dyers ?
    Then Clares the Post office/Newspapers Sweets and Tobacconists
    Boots the Chemist
    Whitehouses a grocer.
    Bates a seed merchants
    Baines/ Wimbush the bakers not sure who ?
    We then crossed the Kings Rd dual carriage way
    There were two shops Beresfords – Electrical repairs/ irons and steam radios etc
    Then came the Cozifit – shoes
    This brings round to Rough Rd the only shop I remember was Summers – the Barbers. There were one or two other shops on this corner but I don’t remember.
    The other side of Rough Rd was Recreation ground with a shelter and toilets, there was also a Roundabout.
    Next came Parkes the Greengrocers
    Then there was a little shop where they re-charged accumalators. I remember when I was older taking the glass accumalator in a metal carrying frame to this shop, the man wrote our name on a ticket and attached it to a terminal – ready for collection in “X” days he would say.
    Then came the chip shop.
    Palmers – sweets and tobacconists
    Hodgesons – Funeral directors
    This was the corner “shop” which brings us into Kinstanding Rd which at this point became a dual carriage way.
    I think we then had Knights – hardware and Knights – Grocers
    The Co-op was the biggest shop along here with it strange centalised
    payment system, when you payed for your groceries the assistant would write out a ticket for the amount along with your dividend number, in my mums case it was 131718, place the ticket and the money into a metal cup which was clipped to an overhead wire, pulling a handle sent the cup wizzing across the shop to an office where the money was received and any change was returned in the same manner.
    Next to the Co-op was a butchers I think followed by Roses another Greengrocer.
    Opposite Roses on the Kingstanding Rd was the Police Station, on its roof was a siren which would warn us of air raids and of the “all clear”
    Then came the Billiard Hall where many years later I would spend many happy hours.
    Knights Cycle and toy shop was on the corner, its big window was empty they had nothing to sell during the war years.
    Round the corner was Kettlehouse Lane? I don’t know the shops here
    rarely went there.
    The rest of the “Circle” was taken by the Odeon cinema which stood between Kettlehouse Lane and Kings Rd and the Kinstanding Pub between
    Kings Rd and Kinstanding Rd
    That’s about as much as I remember of the “Circle” from about 1940, but I’m sure there is more to fill in.

    • I think the shop was moors maybe palmers bought it later the park you refers to I remember we called it the little park I lived in Kingstanding from birth untill I joined the forces I used to know the area like the back of my Han. Still do bus forgett one or two things!!!

    • Thank you Richard great memories!!!

    • Hi Richard. I am a decendant of Jonny Rochelle, who ran the family Butchers with his brother Henry. Henry is my nan’s uncle. Do you know any family members now.
      Kind regards Maxine.

      • Are you Yvonne or Beulah’s granddaughter? Jonny was Fred’s son. My mother-in-law, Josephine Yvonne Rochelle-Hinton, would be related to you as she was Henry’s daughter and they had the circle shop. Fred ran the Kingstanding road shop. I replied earlier to your 2016 query with more information. Hope that helps.

  7. We used to live on the Pheasey and used the shops at the Kingstanding circle for our main shopping. The Co-op was the most used. For fresh fruit and vegetables and for fresh chickens and turkey. I remember they used to head and gut the chickens as you waited. I also still remember my mom’s Co-op number. 108982

  8. I lived in Caversham Rd untill i was eleven,and can remember the weekly shopping trip made with Mom to the Circle. there was a George Masons which sold all the Biscuits from displayed open boxes,and there was a Electrical shop were our TV was rented from think it was Rumbellows.oh and Lennords which sold everything you could think of.I was in the Tufftey Squirrel saving stamps scheme at school ,and when your card was full of stamps you had to take them to the Municiple Bank to get your cash we loved going in there made us feel rich.

    • He Valerie
      George Masons I remember now do you remember Bains Bakery, Parks fruit and veg ? I worked at Bains after school, Coop ran a scheme you had a book and collect points at Christmas you would get your reward
      wish I could go back !!

  9. No one seems to mention A M Oldhams Drapery shop It was the first shop to open at the circle Kingstanding in 1930 They would stay open until nine at night But during the war had to close at six pm

    • Bernie where about on the Circle was Oldhams? I was born in 1944 and recall the name but cannot place it. I do remember the drapers Lennons .

      • Hello Gwen
        Oldham,s shop was next to Jones fish shop, and Palmers Sweet shop, it was sold to P almers about 1949, you would have only been about five years old then. The Oldhams went to live in Great Yarmouth. I married Josie the youngest in 1951 and we came to Australia in 1967 Thank you for your interest Bernie

  10. I lived in caversham rd I used get broken biscuits from favours

  11. Thank you Bernie. Now I recall the drapers by the sweet shop in the 50s. My mother (who came to live in Kingstanding in 1931), of course, would never refer to it as Palmers, but Oldhams and that how I knew the name. A few details do help a slow failing memory. Thanks again.

  12. I find it quite amusing that we all seem to remember our Co-op number
    I am 86 years old and still remember it 171705 Bernie

    • Your right Bernie, I am 75 and still remember my mums Co-op number 131718 also my dads army number 1455454

  13. Hi Bernie and all of you recalling the Kingstanding Circle and its shops, it means many things to me, I spent a great deal of my early childhood with my aunt and uncle on the Pheasey Estate and remember being taken to a clinic on the road to the left of the Odeon with her babies (my cousins who were about 10/11 years younger than me)and my treat was what I thought was a very large round chocolate biscuit from Baines (or was it Wimbush?) I would have passed Oldhams but must be honest it was the picture that stirred my memory, I have always loved Tudor looking buildings. The Odeon also was a big part of my life, being taken there by teachers at Dulwich Road school to see Henry V with Laurence Olivier and my second date with my future husband (who was lodging in Bandywood Road) was to see Mutiny on the Bounty in January 1951. I am glad I decided to browse the whole of the voices of Kingstanding site today, it was just what I needed as I sit here snowbound, I so love it. Nice to hear from you Bernie, hope you and your family and your pal Les/Family are all well in Queensland. PS can anyone remind me what the name of the Road was to the right of the big pub and the left of the Odeon was? it is bugging me that I cant remember. Bye for now Shirley Thain.

    • Defiantly kings road Bernard I was born in Kingstanding and lived there for 20 years so I know the place like the back on my hand completely changed now though. !!!!

  14. Hi Shirley
    The road in between the Pub and the Odeon is part of Kings road. it was part of my milk round in those days. It finished just past Wandsworth road And at the Circle end, It continued on the opposite side, and went right up to the Beggars Bush Thank you for asking we are still resonably fit at 86. and have just got back from a cruise around New Zealand. Sorry to hear you are snow bound. That brings back memories. Hope you are well

  15. i lived at the back of 595 kings rd it was paynes shoe repairs when i was born in 1951 then ridgways the grocer bought it & turned it into a sweet shop then rumbolds took it over now its been sold to indians at the corner of kings rd & shady lane OH & my moms co-op number was 230462 happy days.if you remember it my dad used to stand at the end of the gully watching the cars go up & down shady lane he he

  16. Lennons had one son and he was named Eric Lennon next to lennons was a barbers oposite lennons was Parks green grocers next to parks going into rough road was a small park we used t call it the little park? I don’t remember if it had another name I lived on the kingstanding road almost oposite the police station next to doctor Trimble our house backed on to the gullies that ran along Hines transport yard And came out into winterton road Hines transport yard was bought by the coop I think ? There was 8 brothers and 2 sisters in the Rumbold family I was the third youngest love to here from any one who was around From around 1955 onwards I worked as a 15 butchers boy at Austins the butchers next to roses green grocers !!!!!

  17. Nice to hear comments from Brian rumbold hines transport was my grandad I remember all that you rote

  18. My maternal grandparents moved to Haringey Road in the late 1930s and my grandad Sid Evans was the farrier at the Co-op Dairy on Kingstanding Road. My paternal grandparents lived the other side of the Circle on Kingstanding Road in one of the police houses where my grandad was a sergeant. My parents met in the early 1960s at the Circle Players drama group at the Kingstanding Community Centre – The Circle Players are still going and mum and dad are still acting and doing stage management aged 78 but the plays are performed in Aldridge now.

  19. I remember your surname can’t place you though. I was at kings rise left in1961. Milk kid at coop, me and Lennie jenks used to get in the odeon back way and let bangers off in the cinema anyone remember similar memories


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