The Pub is one of the few great cultural icons of Britain. We are currently in a phase where the future of the pub is in doubt. This blog shows how pubs have changed (or not) over the past 10+ years. I first started taking pictures of pubs in 1986 and have amassed quite a collection. Most of these pubs are within easy walking distance of the English Canals and most are based in the Midlands. Apart from a (very) few, I have drunk in every pub pictured (and sometimes been drunk in them!)
Tuesday, 26 November 2013
#132 White Swan, Harborne, Birmingham : 1967 to 2013
As I didn't first visit Birmingham until 1975, you can probably guess that this photo isn't one of mine!
Some months ago I came across this archive held by Birmingham University as part of Project Chrysalis. Phyllis Nicklin took lots of photos of urban Birmingham over a period from 1953 to 1968 and I've spent many a joyful hour looking through them to see a Birmingham I didn't know. Sadly, from my point of view, there aren't enough pubs in the collection, but not everyone shares my obsession.
Over the years I've been in the White Swan (or Dirty Duck as it is also known) several times, although not for quite a few years. It has always been a bit more upmarket than most Brum pubs.
From the outside remarkably little has changed in the intervening 46 years! The tree trunk is a bit wider and a low fence/hedge has been added. It is also interesting to note how many more lines there are on the road now compared to in 1967!