Self Build in Northfield

Memories of Alison Blackwell

My father Harry Smith and my mother Margaret set this up in the early 50's recruiting men from across the works who wanted to build their own homes. I still have one of the original recruiting posters that my grandfather painted that was displayed in the works. My father went to the Austin Board with the proposal for what he and my mother wanted to do and they helped the men by "loaning them the funds to buy land from Cadburys and all the building materials. My father and the men built their own homes in Bramble Close, Verbena Road and Meadow Brook.

They worked in shifts 24/7 - as they came out of Longbridge they would walk or cycle to the building site and put in another shift there before going home for a couple of hours sleep. At the time my parents lived in Moseley! Can you imagine anyone today doing this? All members of the scheme were given a commemorative barometer which still hangs on the wall in my parents house.

The Building Site
Austin Self BuildAustin Self Build I

Austin Self Build FAustin Self Build H

Austin Self Build MAustin Self Build A

Austin Self Build C
Self Build Clock
Clock Presented By The Austin Motor Company
In recondition of their Achievement in building their own home.

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