The political class say “the West Midlands deserves better”- Yes just not them!

I am no fan of politicians of any variety. They appear out of hibernation in December before a May election and preach how things will be better if they are elected.

Image result for mount doom gif


This year locally in the English West Midlands, we get both council elections delayed from last year, plus the pointless Mayor and Police and Crime Commissioner polls thrown in. The latter two positions have no mandate for their creation by the public, and there does not appear to be any mechanism for removing this shackle of tax payer burden either. If the candidates had the b 😛 llocks to allow a “scrap this position” on the ballot paper then I would bother to vote.

Unfortunately, there really is no difference between any of the Mayoral candidates when it comes to brownfield building. I have called out current mayor Andy Street before for his “brownfield first” agenda , which offers nothing for those who live around such sites, particularly historic landfill sites, except disruption, exposure to long buried hazardous dusts and chemicals , and the eventual prospect of lack of services, increased density of population and loss of green space. His “brownfield” are our green spaces, or those which have the potential to become the nature reserves of tomorrow with sensitive and limited management. Unfortunately, what you will probably get from a development in such areas are plenty of houses with  a “tree lined boulevard” or hedgerow thrown in as some form of “mitigation”. Effectively, litter traps where the new neighbourhood dogs can have a piss.

I looked at the Government’s abysmal planning reform white paper, and how this “developer’s charter” if approved makes the prospect of having no green space left in our area even easier if you are deemed to be in a “growth” area. Growth that is by developers and the construction industry laying their cuckoo eggs on our soiled soil.

The West Midlands County is tiny compared to the surrounding counties, yet the population is greatly in excess. The rich keep it that way  with their “greenbelt” agenda.

Locally, the unelected West Midlands Combined Authority, a poor man’s reinvention of the West Midlands County Council and “The Black Country Local Enterprise Partnership”, a new name for the The Black Country Development Corporation is being handed obscene amounts of tax payers money for the house building “clean up” of toxic sites. There is even a £17.5m new building being built in Wolverhampton called the “National Brownfield Institute.” Again we pay for this, when the polluters of the said land never did. 

According to this gushing article, this building will  “be home to a state-of-the-art research and innovation centre and will feature commercial testing facilities and lab space.

It will also house a national policy institute which will inform and guide future strategy development around brownfield regeneration, give specialist advice on dealing with contaminated land and repurposing buildings and sites and look at new and innovative construction methods such as modular housing.”

“Specialist advice” from whom? This is a private sector body created using public money, and also funded by public money to pay for land that was abandoned, or from which serial polluters like Severn Trent Water PLC can flog off for their shareholder profit. WHY THE HELL SHOULD WE PAY FOR THIS, AND, DID I MISS THAT DEBATE? 

Around Rattlechain lagoon there is an evil air stirring on “Mount Doom” that has been buried for some years, a “sleepless malice” with the renewed prospect of more built development. Nothing escapes my eye, and I have been monitoring it for some time, as have local residents, and I will be reporting soon on this.

See the source image

In this regard, I will be asking questions of those standing in Sandwell in the wards of Oldbury– which contains the lagoon and surrounding area, but also Great Bridge which locates Sheepwash local Nature Reserve– which is under increasing threat of such developments on its border. Every candidate standing in these wards will be contacted and asked the same questions and invited to make comment without editing.

It is important at these elections that people voice their opposition to housing being targeted on open space and the very worst historic landfill sites adjoining their homes and the direct threats that “remediation” of these pose. Once the greenspace is gone, it will never be replaced. You should not be left with no open space because green belt votes are considered more important. Use your vote wisely. 



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Blob phos- The joy of tainting

The artist formally known as “the tramp phosphorus” has recently been inspired to take up painting of his surroundings using the wet on wet tip technique. What else can he do after being locked down by the flocculant?

The mountainous foundry sand greened landscapes to the horizon, the flurry of critters scampering through the bushes and the swish of birds wings through the murky lagoon waters- what inspiration.

On a recent wet tip tutorial, he demonstrated to a gang of cormorants his recollections of the waste pipe that used to jut out into the depths of the hazardous waste site discharging liquid laced with milky white happy little phosphorus particles. Of course, there was much to recall layered and smeared on the marl canvas already.


One diorama showed the symmetry of the two lagoons and dividing causeway path, well one lagoon needed a friend.  😆

Said tramp to his captive audience

“Take some titanium white and blend it with a little cad yellow phosphorus, and blend it back. There we go, right over there, here and everywhere. Mix it up, scrub it in,  tiniest little circles, tiniest little circles , grab it and pull, grab it and pull…..”

A stunning result

“And now the fun part of it…. wash the old brush using odourless paint thinner…..shake off the excess…. and beat the devil’s element out of it.”

And for his pièce de résistance, Tramp painted a birds eye view of the lagoon…

“You could add a happy little palm tree going right off the canvas. Mix some Prussian blue and Vandyke brown….have a foundry sand mountain that lives here….there we go…A few distant evergreen trees and some happy little clouds of phosphorus pentoxide… and I think that’s ready for a signature…..

One is reminded of the mantra of Albright and Wilson. “We don’t make mistakes, we just have happy little accidents.”

“Until next time… happy tainting, and God bless.”


No critters were harmed during the making of this blog post, unlike the dozens poisoned in this former brick work clay pit filled with a banned rat poison in suspension. 


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Rattlechain lagoon makes The ENDS report!




The notorious Rattlechain lagoon , a local hazardous waste dump with a very murky secret has at last gone national!


The ENDS report is a brilliant publication and can be subscribed to HERE. 

I must thank Danny Halpin, a keen young investigative journalist for his time and effort in uncovering a large body of information that many authorities would like to remain buried- particularly the construction industry and those crowing for the “brownfield first” building agenda.

The article references some of the struggles that I had, particularly early on in attempting to find out why many birds were dying on this lake, which would go on to be accurately described as “a lake of death”.  

I bore direct witness to the suffering of birds who were unfortunate enough to land on this backwater dump, surrounded by canals and adjacent to a nature reserve, and nothing but obstacles were put in my way by multiple Governmental agencies in attempting to find out the real cause of death.

This was of course , white phosphorus, (P4), a banned rat poison, which perversely, was still allowed to be dumped at sites like this in considerable amounts. This had happened for years, despite even in the 1950’s local authorities knowing that it was “a peril to children”, but still it continued, and then became even worse sanctioned by a paperweight waste disposal licence that was not worth the paper it was printed on.

The idea that this highly toxic and poisonous waste could be dumped in the open air was flawed to start with, and those who considered it “safe” to do so, as the waste management application suggested should have been made to ingest it, along with the fools who believed the “science” of these reckless fraudulent liars operating out of Oldbury.

When applying for a waste disposal licence to The West Midlands county council in 1978, Albright and Wilson had the audacity to make false claims about the “safe” disposal of “small quantities” of this dangerous banned rat poison by claiming that “natural oxidation” would deal with it.

The process was neither “safe” and the amounts were not “small”. Albright and Wilson liars of the chemical industry. 40 years on, it’s still there.

In the ENDS article, Rhodia/Solvay still cling to the deception of percentages of the total waste, but this was dismissed when I asked the EA for the records of how much waste had been deposited since licensing, which can be read here. These quantities do not include the many tonnes of waste dumped for the 30 preceding years before this, when this company were also a Ministry of Supply phosphorus munitions producer in WW2 making the stuff that unleashed a firestorm on Dresden and Hamburg. The wastes of war had to go somewhere, and a satellite waste dump down the road was the answer.

Rhodia also made statements to another national newspaper journalist some time ago, admitting that there were “tens of tonnes” of white phosphorus buried within the waste- when you look at it like that, the 0.1% they claim is perhaps put into a better context and not the disingenuous bunkum that they are trying to peddle.

Milligram quantities are enough to poison people, as well as the unfortunate birds that I myself pulled from the water on several occasions.

It is quite apparent however from Danny’s investigation via ENDS that Rattlechain lagoon is one of many sites that have been forgotten like this around the UK, or perhaps deliberately buried for corporate benefit, and secured by industrial friendly politicians who even in the past have been known to be paid “policy advisors” for such.

The case of young Zane Gbangbola and his Dad’s efforts to uncover the wall of silence and denials is one that I too recognise, and I am sure that there are many other environmental campaigners across the country, and throughout the world who have also been side lined by corporate denial and Governmental ignorance in the same way.  Read about the family’s story HERE on their website, I firmly believe after looking into this that a perverse injustice has been served here, and I wish them well in uncovering a truth that I believe will one day be admitted.

You have to wonder with all of the joined up denials and attempts to silence by those in local Government and national agencies to whom these civil “servants” serve ?

The What’s in your backyard EA website, and the manner in which it was removed from public view, I have looked at in This FoI request. What it was replaced with, and the amount of info that has now been obscured with is really not worth bothering with, as the ENDS article suggests.

The quote from Professor Andrew Watterson   is again something which I recognise fully. This applies to the sites around rattlechain lagoon where housing has been progressively developed over the years, leaving the watery toxic waste hole in situ without dealing with it first, and by that I don’t mean filling it in.

I will be going into painstaking detail about this no doubt in the coming months to years, and have already prepared multiple pages and posts after unearthing vast quantities of desk buried information from various sources. Developers may be increasingly finding it easy to build on such sites through manipulation of the planning process, but I promise them the mother of all battles with them attempting to pull the wool over people’s eyes as to the historic legacy buried at these “shovel ready” sites. 

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White phosphorus misadventures #5 Bright eyes, burning like fire

This is another very weird tale of how to treat a longstanding white phosphorus burn from the early 20th century. The same story appears to have been syndicated in a variety of titles that I have come across, though I take this one from the 16th December 1904 Ashbourne News Telegraph. 

At this point in time, P4 was being phased out of matchmaking due to the dangerous nature of the substance and its poisoning of very young women in particular in the matchmaking industry.

This story from America involves another youngster, but we are not told as to how he came by the injury. I am not sure if “Cornelius Post” was his name, or if the comma in the article refers to the story coming from a newspaper by this name in the New York area?  

The grotesque and cruel method used to treat the burn on his leg was to place a live rabbit on the burn in some bizarre skin graft operation. They could have course have just used some stuff off his own arse, instead of inflicting such an ordeal on the poor thumper. I cannot see how the life of the rabbit would possibly have been saved, or even the boy himself. Thank goodness this type of “surgery”  never caught on.


I feel a song coming on……….

“How could the leg that burned so brightly, suddenly burn so pale- Bright Eyes.”


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Albright’s toxic archives #32 A cloud over Oldbury 3


Published just a day after the laughable comments of works manager Ian Woodhouse’s statement that there would be an “extremely unlikely event” of a major incident being declared at this Top Tier COMAH site, this Sandwell Evening Mail piece from 16th January 1992 shows that there was just that.

Once again, The Trinity Street terrorists toxic assault chemical of choice was white phosphorus. P4 being delivered into the works by rail had caught fire. The amount being carried was 50 tonnes, an extraordinary volume of such a dangerous substance being delivered into an urban area. The “irritant white chemical” was of course oxidising phosphorus- phosphorus pentoxide.  This chemical is also toxic. 

The early morning drama saw both the A&W part timers joining forces with the professionals.

Once again, Woodhouse tries to play down the incident and again directly lies that phosphorus pentoxide is not toxic.

Phosphorus pentoxide is “toxic”. It is a COSSH substance hazardous to health.

The Public Health England Guidance on white phosphorus incident management 2016 makes it specifically clear in its key points, that the oxides arising from uncontrolled releases of white phosphorus are “toxic”.

And this was certainly known to these producers of white phosphorus in 1992.

He also makes the  ludicrous guess that he “thinks” the fumes had dispersed before they reached the site boundaries- so therefore he attempts to connive that there was no off site release. Of course, this was as the Environment agency report from 1997 states, directly linked to his personal bonus scheme as works manager.

What were local residents supposed to make of such senior officials at this chemical factory when they made such verbose statements of untruthful information about their daily activities? What confidence could they have in living next to a site which handled such large amounts of dangerous flammable chemicals which gave off toxic gases when exposed to air? Would their “safety cards” that had been delivered by the company in a PR exercise protect them? It had however been The Albright and Wilson way for many decades, as this blog has repeatedly demonstrated through direct evidence. 

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Albright’s toxic archives #31 The comical Mr Woodhouse

Albright and Wilson were a company that revelled in its manufacture of  dangerous chemicals that they attempted to turn into “everyday” household items used by Joe Public. Some early examples of this I have looked at HERE. This laughable exercise unfortunately didn’t apply to these gas lighters and their hazardous waste sites, like Rattlechain lagoon.

Thus an example here was given in the 15th January 1992 Sandwell Evening Mail with the very ominous, and also highly prophetic “Chemical Plant Danger Alert.” 

A public relations exercise involved them distributing an information pack within the then 2km safety zone, when chlorine and phosphorus were still being delivered by rail into the works. I have looked in the previous post as to why this was a very bad idea!

“The safety card warned of the possible hazards from the accidental release of toxic chlorine, phosphine or phosphorus, which can cause breathing difficulties. “

In this article, we see that the incompetent liar Peter Bloore had obviously got the chop as works manager after a series of incidents involving the very thing that his successor appears oblivious to in this piece.

Ian Woodhouse states “It is simply a question of fulfilling our obligations to our neighbours , ensuring that they are fully informed about the action they should take in the extremely unlikely event of a major emergency at our plant”

I would have to state that the man appears to be on a different planet here, as the “extremely unlikely event” he talks of had happened repeatedly- and here is a little reminder through the following evidential blog posts of past incidents at Trinity Street, and their decennium horribilis, some involving the very chemicals mentioned in this story.

Albright’s toxic archives #14 -Chlorine gassed | What Lies Beneath Rattlechain Lagoon?

Albright’s toxic archives #25 – Oldbury’s Firemen Shams- not Albright on the night. | What Lies Beneath Rattlechain Lagoon?

Albright’s toxic archives #26 Phosphine under pressure | What Lies Beneath Rattlechain Lagoon?

Albright’s toxic archives #27- Bloore’s bad gas | What Lies Beneath Rattlechain Lagoon?

Albright’s toxic archives #28 A cloud over Oldbury #1 | What Lies Beneath Rattlechain Lagoon?

Albright’s toxic archives #29 A cloud over Oldbury #2 | What Lies Beneath Rattlechain Lagoon?

Albright’s toxic archives #30 Bloore’s sesquisulphide mismatch | What Lies Beneath Rattlechain Lagoon?

I rest my case, except to state that other incidents at Portishead, Avonmouth, and fatally abroad at their Charleston plant in the US, show this company for what they really were in the 1990’s and towards demise.  

The timing of this warning from Ian Woodhouse was quite unbelievable , as the very next day, there would indeed be an incident involving the release of toxic phosphorus, which I will examine in the next post. He must have been having a laugh when he said “extremely unlikely event”.

Nice one Woody.

Perhaps this tune hooked up to the air raid siren speakers would have been a better reflection of their “general alarm” warning system to their residential neighbours.  😆

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Another rotten borough Coronation!


Rowley Regis Municipal Borough Coat of Arms.png



Blimey, I thought the pompous self serving councillors at Oldbury had been a one off in their self promotion using a National event , but I was wrong, as it appears that their near neighbours at Rowley Regis were at it too in June 1953!

I have to state that I know less about this short lived dominion than that of Oldbury, but it is important given that at this point in time it encompassed The Rattlechain Brickworks area, and of course by now, the Albright and Wilson toxic waste dump of Rattlechain lagoon. Indeed, we see how rotten a borough it was by virtue of the crooked brickworks Barnett family involvement earlier in the Century as an “urban district”, notably Samuel and then his son William as “local councillors”.

I have acquired another “souvenir brochure” artefact concerning the Coronation of Elizabeth 2nd , this time covering Rowley Regis and it is a Maj macguffin that has been fairly well fingered at nearly 70 years old. This A5 pamphlet weighs in at 40 pages.

We get straight into the Rowley “royalty” before the actual monarch to whom the event relates.  😆

“The opportunity has also been taken to record something about the present-day administration of the borough and its civic regalia.” Yes I bet it was. 


This prologue states that this Municipal borough was formed in 1933.

We then get just 8 pages about the principle characters and the ceremony itself at Westminster Abbey. I don’t intend commenting on this, as it is of little interest to myself or this blog, but feel free to click if you are a fan of the Windsors.


And then to the interesting part, and as with Oldbury, the attempted link to the monarchy with the list of the councillors who made up the council. All male except for one Polly Pritchard. Some of these names I have come across in looking at issues in Rattlechain later in the decade, which I will talk about further on in this post.


I’ve scanned the side wards picture right way up.


And enter the bureaucrats, again all men except for the tea lady by a souped-up name.


A picture of the council house is shown. This building was demolished in 2012.

Image from wikipedia.

More expensive phallic regalia is shown on pages 18 and 19. The gavels connection to “masonic orders” is another red flag as to how these boroughs were run.

The centre pages reveal that “loyal and industrious” is the motto of the borough, but I’m not sure where the loyalty is directed to. Perhaps “loyal” to the industrialists who ran the borough for their own ends? There is also a potted history of the area with as usual the only notable statements being about rich families and industrialists.

It is revealed that there was a coronation committee headed by some old bloke Alderman with a resemblance to Albert Tatlock. Bizarrely they think it a good idea to site a children’s play area on top of contaminated land to mark the occasion! On further pages we are told that even this has some connection to a former councillor, such is the symbiotic relationship between those who bought their way into power.

There is the involvement in the affair of The Vono works, as well as others. A masonic lodge also appears to be in on the act, I just wonder how many of the councillors were active members?

The very British idea of street parties and jelly and custard and fun and games appear to be very prominent here.

The event occurred at a time when the monarchy commanded more respect than it does today, but I’m not really sure why. Events would last a whole week, and even an event in Haden Hill Park in July.


This runs neatly into an appreciation of this park building, again named after another singular wealthy family. There’s more info on this if you’re interested HERE.

A history board of the house and park is also on display in the park today.

The booklet is then given over to several advertisements for local trades. No doubt the councillor Shakespeare on the council had some direct connection to the Joseph Shakespeare company.



And to round it off pair of weapons.


Some of the councillors at this time have cropped up in articles and planning matters that I have seen when looking for information about Rattlechain and the wider local area. The civil servant S.G. Wood appears at a meeting in 1961 about The Vono works and their tipping area.

Rattlechain lagoon and its white phosphorus contents itself arrived on the Rowley radar in 1957 in a very interesting article “peril to children”.

Councillor Noah Edward Thorne, speaks out here about the fact that children could cause themselves great harm with a pool filled with white phosphorus waste.

Councillors Edward Wakeman, and Dennis Gilbert (subsequently Alderman), were critical of the smell that rattlechain was causing and which was detrimental to public health in this article from 1958.

But that said, obviously something happened in Rowley Regis to turn a blind eye to this and allow the “quakers” to keep on dumping their poison waste in their borough. Money no doubt changed hands here to buy silence, I have little doubt, or a trouser leg roll up and funny handshake were employed to good effect.

In 1966, the borough of Rowley Regis merged with the boroughs of Oldbury and Smethwick  to form the “Warley County Borough”, and became part of Worcestershire.

Eight years later, in 1974, on the formation of the West Midlands Metropolitan county, Warley merged with West Bromwich to form the Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council. Rowley Regis is now one of its so called “six towns”, and is perhaps best known virally for a single Street in keeping with a tone promoting pomp and circumstance, and also the berks in its charge.


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A right “Royal” affair in the rotten borough of Oldbury

In the course of investigating the Rattlechain lagoon story and its many historical facets, I have come across a collection of material as a collector of antiquities. Much of this has been about the vile polluters of Albright and Wilson, but the story of their facilitators in local Governance and their “society of friends” is also worthy of note . It reveals a great deal in how these circles of corruption operated and how certain businesses prospered in this web. Unfortunately, it is still ongoing today amongst the political class, with family dynasties operating out of civic society.

There is nothing more than these actors enjoy than an event, and there is also no doubt that one of the most prominent in Britain in the 20th Century was the Coronation of the Queen in 1953. In a post war Britain, this unfortunately served as some form of major “celebration.”  🙄

I will say from the offset that I despise the Royal family as a Republican, their monetary wealth and favour and their “sporting” activities which involve the mass slaughter of wildlife, both home and abroad. The coercive control that this aristocracy has, and its interwoven links with academia and the civil service make me puke.

I had no interest in buying the macGuffin item in this post for commemorative value or souvenir of the maj’s big day, but because I thought it would wield more interesting info on the political players in the former now defunct Rotten borough of Oldbury. For a tenner, I was not disappointed.

This brochure was supposedly put out to commemorate the Coronation, but as I have already alluded, the political players just love to jump on a bandwagon, and by their very nature, association with the ruling class. It was not a surprise therefore to discover that most of the booklet IS ABOUT THEM AND THEIR ROTTEN POLITICAL BOROUGH, and not the Queen herself!  Of course, Oldbury and the West Midlands have fuck all to do with the London centric Windsors, but why should that stop a bunch of trumpet blowing arsehole amateur politicians? There are several familiar names which stand out from the most interesting time of when “The Oldbury smell” took place, which now give faces to those behind the story. 

I will take you through this pamphlet page at a time. Click on the pictures for enlargements.

Right from the get go we get the pompous prick Samuel Melsom set out his credentials. Melsom is strongly associated with appeasing Albright and Wilson and even speaking for them in their defence in connection with the health issues and problems that they inflicted on the people of Oldbury. He was no doubt a shill of theirs, but one of several on this rotten borough.

I bet Lizzy was truly thankful that Oldbury was on hand to help out with the post war issues and “perplexing problems”- I mean this specimen was unable to fix the smell of cat piss in his own neighbourhood, so how he or others like him would be able to offer any hope or help in tackling the pressing issues of the day in the wider country, God only knows. 🙄

We are given a history lesson of this clan and its peerage.

Followed by a two page biography of the lady in question

Then another biography  on Nick The Greek and his inflated military career- promotion by his missis.

And that is that about the actual event, with the next 12 pages all about the rotten borough of Oldbury. Of course, what they attempt here is an example of linkage of history, to which there is none whatsoever. It does this by the use of repetition of words- for example by suggesting that the name itself is of Anglo Saxon origin. Mind you, I never knew that about Quinton, though it does remind me of my Chaucer and The Miller’s Tale where he caught her  “by the queynte”. I’m not sure if the Greek Prince may have offered a similar suit to George the stutterers eldest.  😀

“Manors” , and “Lords” , are intertwined with the desperate narrative that the borough was switched counties in the reigns of William IV and Queen Victoria by Acts of Parliament. They also throughout the booklet put the logo of Oldbury at the top of the page, with the Queen’s initials anchoring the page, and bordered by a purple regal glow. These are all political brainwashing techniques, with a white central hue of text filling the space where the Queen’s portrait appears on pages two and four. A subtle, but clever visual illusion trick to make you believe that there is some form of royal link with the tarnished town.

Of course , it isn’t long before we get the inevitable bigging up of the chemical industry in this area.

“…and in the middle of the century saw the start of the phosphorus works which have achieved international reputation……”  😕 

The only reputation that this stinking polluter had locally was that of its abysmal pollution, but this airbrushing out of reality is what the scum like Melsom were all about. The birth of his rotten borough in 1935 is also linked directly with the weasel faced Wilson family of the chemical factory.

What then follows is two pages of absolute shite pr about how great the borough is run and what it has to offer. There is the subtle mention of “well known families” who have donated pieces of land for parks.

“In 1928, the corporation purchased the Brandhall Golf course which is now run municipally. it is an interesting 18- hole golf course of 6,054 yards and extends over 105 acres”– well not any more under Sandwell council  😆

The other character that I have a problem with is Andrew Carnegie and his library’s. As I have pointed out before, this do-gooder gave books that he wanted the poor to read, and thereby framing their ideas and beliefs, and omitting books which were against his own views. To this day the propaganda of “local history” in Oldbury is selective and uncritical of its industrial past and more attuned to the civic society white lives mattered most movement in terms of tradition and civic political life.

It is a sinister statement concerning planning matters that stands out in the penultimate paragraph, and one can see to this day that the same sheisters now in charge of this still rotten borough are following the same trodden path as those in the 1950’s.

“This scheme, which came into operation in 1936, enabled the growth of those parts of the borough covered by the scheme to be controlled and to follow an ordered pattern.”  The Worcestershire County Council is now the local planning Authority, but by a delegation agreement with the county, Oldbury continues to exercise control over development in the borough. “

Worcestershire County Council, is of course heavily associated with the Wilson family and Ken Wilson in particular, whose Uncle, John William Wilson was also an MP in the pocket borough for many years; at one election unopposed. So what we see from this “order” and “control” is the role out of the Quaker Garden City approach, with Worcestershire of course enjoying “control” and “order” from the centre, and the shite of Oldbury being the development playground where the local wing bitches like Samuel Melsom’s get to swagger as though in control for the Daddies running the prison from the centre.

The events planned for the borough are like some desperate Butlins tie in. They even allowed “public dancing” in the baths car park after dark!  😮

We also get unashamed propaganda gifts given out to children in the shape of mugs. Women over 65 and men over 70 got a tea caddy and half a pound of tea. Don’t drink it all at once dears. There was also a coronation day lottery of births being given a savings account.

“Let its ancient glory flourish”  😆  😆  😆 

Further on, another heraldry lesson showing once again the rotten boroughs links to the chemical industry controllers of the town- this is revealed that the civic tools of office, pointless devices like the mace and mayoral chains made of Silver and Gold were engraved with the names of those who wanted to stamp their control over the people. Written on these are the marks of Accles and pollock and of course Albright and Wilson. The Mayoral chain even bears the coat of arms of the Wilson family.

Such decadence and wealth are of course tied in with these scumbags earnings as councillors in the days when business could buy you a place as a legislator. Park donating and other such gifts were the way of ingratiating  such characters into prominence in the community. They literally “ran Oldbury”. Pictures of these tribal embossed boasts are shown further on towards the end of the booklet. See below.

And this has what to do with the Queen’s coronation?

The one interesting thing about this book are the old photos of what used to be. The cenotaph is still there in Oldbury, but the flower beds have gone to be replaced by the occasional scruffy market, and the Sainsbury’s behind it. The large row of shops in the background have also now of course gone, to be replaced with the new rotten borough of Sandwell’s council house.

And then perhaps the money shot and gamble as to why I bought the book, a picture of the  councillors and Aldermen wh0 made up the rotten borough. This Picture contains an over-tracing with positional names written over for identification. I have not scanned this, but instead numbered each person and recorded their names below the picture. All councillors unless otherwise stated.


1 A.E Lee  2  O Arkinstall      3  Mrs E.M.J Gunn  4B.H Tarr   5Mrs R Starkie       6  Alderman J.W Bright  7 E. Harold Chief sanitary inspector   8 A J R Blackman Borough Librarian    9 W Hayes 10 Mrs M. E Garratt 11 J.H.C Marsh Education officer 12 Alderman J W Holland 13 B I Taylor Housing Estates Manager 14 Alderman J F Goode 15 W R Wilkes Deputy Town Clerk 16 H Jonson Mace Bearer 17   Kenneth Pearce Town Clerk 18 Mayor Alderman S Melsom 19 Alderman G W Rose 20 W H Hunter 21 L W Carter 22 J Mitchell Borough treasurer 23 Alderman Ken Wilson 24  Dr H Tabbush Medical officer  25 DD C McGibbon 26 Alderman B T Robbins  27 A Gunn 28 J D Beard 29 C. B Beck Borough surveyor 30 Mrs E Pine 31 R Hobley Deputy Surveyor 32 F Cooper 33 A E Roberts 34 J W Jones 35 T Swallow 36 H Barrada 37  W Hollyoake 38 F W Thompson 39 W Carter 40 Mrs D.M Hollyoake

Of course there are instant observations to be made. All of senior years, all white, and only four women. There are also obviously two councillor couples of the same name. The incomparable Mrs Gunn who rarely for a councillor actually spoke out about “the Oldbury Smell” caused by Albright and Wilson is present, in this the very chamber where she would waive her withered bush in anger at the fall out of the Trinity Street operation .

We love you Mrs Gunn!

The pompous Melsom sits in the centre in his robes with the list of mayors behind him on the plaque. Nearby the rat faced Ken Wilson, perhaps the real organ grinder of this rotten borough still has influence via his “alderman” position. With his hands on the table, it is almost as if he wants to grab back the mace inches from them. What a c77t.  :mrgreen:

On page 25, The pompous arse Melsom revels in his Mayoral regalia once again wearing his chain with a bunch of other assembled self important idiots. I’m not sure what the connection is to the other picture of a new housing development?


They also appear to be proud of their Langley baths

And Barnford Park.


Three further pages show off the previously mentioned civic regalia, just to rub it in for the hard pressed working class luddites.

The Carnegie Library is also linked to the Oldbury Grammar School.

The booklet is rounded off with the Mayoral board, showing the list of these scumbags starting with rattie Wilson and up to the then present incumbent Melsom, who subsequently appeared to have a spectacular fall from grace when he fell out with members of his own party. Seems a very modern day scenario that repeats itself that one in this most “socialist” of areas.  😆

The Queen and Phillip would themselves visit the area some 4 years later, and be received by Mrs Gunn’s husband Alf, who was now the mayor. I’m just glad that Melsom didn’t get his moment in the spotlight, and at least a fairly decent man did instead.

The rotten borough of Oldbury would have a further 13 years after the Coronation event before being merged with Smethwick and Rowley Regis, (similar), into the “Warley Borough”, and then of course in 1974 with the merger of West Bromwich, “Sandwell” was born, and it’s still as rotten as ever! 

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Albright’s toxic archives #30 Bloore’s sesquisulphide mismatch

and the reward of failure in the chemical industry is…… promotion!

Another tale of failed management, another tale of “Dr” Peter Bloore.

Quite why he was seemingly promoted to the role above in Albright and Wilson due to his absolute failures as works manager at Trinity Street is beyond me, but perhaps he was just so good at lying to the public that they thought he would fit the job.

These two separate incidents , again from his disastrous tenure at the helm as phosphorus commander both deal with a substance known as phosphorus sesquisulphide.

A short history lesson is needed about this substance, chemical formula P4S3, and Albright and Wilson’s manufacture of it, which started in 1898/99.

The dangerous use of white phosphorus matches paved the way for “safer” alternatives, with this yellow solid being one of the most well known. It wasn’t really “safe” because it still could catch fire very easily, due to the impurities of white phosphorus within it when the p4 was heated with sulphur. It’s reaction with water is also dangerous.

From “The manufacture and uses of phosphorus and some of its compounds”, we get the formula for the “strike anywhere” matches that used this chemical at 9%. Don’t try making any fiery explosions at home by following this formula now, yall  😀

This was without doubt a lucrative Albright and Wilson’s export line in the 20th Century. Some  studies however by J. FREDERICK BURGESS show how the sesquisulphide of phosphorus can cause series dermatitis issues when handled with these type of match material.

“This poisoning resulted in a recurring severe primary dermatitis about the eyes and face. In each case, loosening of the teeth occurred which may have been due to phosphorus poisoning. In one case a severe systemic poisoning resulted which cleared up completely on discontinuing the use of matches.”


I’d suggest therefore that the term “non-toxic” is therefore another Albright and Wilson semantic argument which could be challenged. When it combusts, it forms sulphur dioxide and also phosphorus pentoxide, which Albright and Wilson have continuously lied about being non-toxic during their frequent off site releases.

As this post also shows, in the latter part of the century, they were still having problems with making it safely at POBox 80.

Two incidents within just a few weeks demonstrate how their farcical health and safety systems were not up to scratch. The first from 24th July 1989 Sandwell Evening Mail tells how firemen tackling a fire had to be “de-contaminated” after coming into contact with a fire involving the substance.

“The chemical is very dangerous when it dries out because it spontaneously combusts” 

It is interesting to see that the fire commander also highlights the real prospect of carrying the drying solid off site and the potential for it to catch fire thereafter. The only comment from Dr phosphorus is that it was used in the production of matches- a typical Albright and Wilson Bloore statement which basically reads as an advertisement and never an explanation or apology.

Well strike a light, if the same thing didn’t happen just two months later!

The same paper reported another fire in its September 11th edition. On this occasion, firemen spent 3 hours putting that light out. A large amount of the substance had again  caught fire, and one can only deduce from this is that it was not being stored safely.

Bloore promised an  investigation, like these people always do, but the paper failed to link these two close incidents which is poor journalism to be honest. Whatever this “investigation” amounted to, the method of disposing of the mess would not be investigated. It was simply drummed up for disposal.

The statement about storing it in water appears to very dubious as this chemical produces toxic gases when doing so. We do know however that their Gower Tip licence  SL32 allowed them to dispose of 2 tonnes a year of this substance at this site, as well as the linked phosphorus pentasulphide, and this tip was still in use at the time of this fire, indeed, the same firemen would be tackling a fire next to the Gower in the following year.  and expressing concern at the exposed drums of chemicals dumped there 😆

The main problem with phosphorus pentasulphide and sesquisulphide at this very “hazardous landfill” waste site is revealed in the waste management licence report to the former West Midlands County council who granted this “contentious licence” insanity back in 1978.

“I Background

This site is a former clay marl hole which has been used as an industrial tip since 1938. The site has received large quantities of toxic and hazardous waste since this time. These are mostly comprised of various compounds of phosphorus together with some radio-active wastes, laboratory chemicals, solvents etc. The site represents the major disposal outlet for the Company’s waste phosphorus pentasulphide and phosphorus susquisulphide.(sic)

These waste arisings are the main problem associated with this site since they are highly reactive especially with water. “

Of course, “the stuff used in matches” at The Gower tip remains buried there to this day. 

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Albright’s toxic archives #29 A cloud over Oldbury #2


It never just rains over Langley, it rains toxic fumes and escaping gas from the terrorists based at PO BOX80. As the Sandwell Evening Mail reported on 7th December 1990, this capped an absolutely terrible year of accidents and environmental disasters for this company, and it can only have been as a result of the abysmal, incompetent and failed management.



50 tonnes of phosphorus are reported to have exploded at the Oldbury factory sending a cloud plume of toxic gas and vapour into the air, just as had happened at their Portishead plant earlier in the year. This incident is important as it shows the dangers of unloading this highly dangerous chemical from rail cars, like the situation that had occurred in Ohio with Another Albright and Wilson train wagon in 1986. It is interesting to note the copper’s statement about the escaping phosphorus situation.

“As it burns it gives off the toxic phosphorus pentoxide which causes irritation of the nose, eyes and throat.”

This is not what Albright and Wilson staff had categorically lied to the press and public about after the Portishead release, where they claimed that the gas given off, (phosphorus pentoxide) ,was not toxic.

The area around the plant was made “a no go area” after being cordoned off by the plod, as well as being on standby to evacuate homes . The two other tankers containing p4 also had to be removed to prevent any further explosion in a fire that was tackled by 60 firemen.

A company spokesman by the name “John Pickup” , who I must admit I have never heard of in all my long research of this disgusting company, (and I question if this is a misprint), claims that no lasting harm was caused to any personnel. Well they said that about Phossy jaw as well didn’t they- liars.

But where was “Dr” Bloore in this debacle? Hiding his face down the rattlechain whilst supervising the Cremer and Warner investigation cover up for his company which was taking place at this point in time? Now where did all that crap from Portishead go, did it arrive by train……#insurancefiddle?

the dangerous phosphorus releasers.

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