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Jensen Bros. History

PostPosted: Wed Dec 09, 2009 8:59 pm
by Barrie
On 10th December I see that Bigwoods auctioneers are selling 45 Anderton Park Rd. Mosely.

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Lot 16.

http://www.bigwood.uk.com/

I believe the coach house was where Richard & Alan Jensen built cars in the 20's and 30's.
Anyone got any pictures of the property as it was then?

PostPosted: Wed Dec 09, 2009 11:06 pm
by VFK44
More Jensen property memories:
On my return from the JOC International this year, I diverted to West Bromwich to seek out the Carter's Green Jensen site. Not having any pictures or guidance with me, I just drove around the rather scruffy streets until I saw an Inter-Wars low-rise office block. No-one in the road knew what it had been used for and the place was deserted. I took a few photos just in case, and it turned out when I got home and looked it up in Keith's book, that it was exactly the spot and completely unchanged in 50 years!
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ImageNote that the letterbox is still in the same place!
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The only major change is that the stylish Interceptor 4-litre is replaced with my stylish Daewoo (Chevy) Kalos hire car...

I did some research and found it was currently owned/used by Sandwell Council's Youth Projects department. They unfortunately told me it was destined to be demolished in 2010. That will disturb some ghosts...

PostPosted: Thu Dec 10, 2009 3:05 pm
by Barrie
Terrific stuff!
:)

PostPosted: Thu Dec 10, 2009 8:53 pm
by Kerry Moore
VFK44 wrote:More Jensen property memories:
On my return from the JOC International this year, I diverted to West Bromwich to seek out the Carter's Green Jensen site.


Why didn't you ask me, it's behind the casino, and around the corner from the Wheartsheaf where Eric Neale used to go for a pint

PostPosted: Thu Dec 10, 2009 9:05 pm
by Jens
Kerry Moore wrote:Why didn't you ask me, ...


Kerry, PLEASE.

Quite obvious, isn't it?

Anyway, do you know some more stories regarding this subject? We all would be very interested.

PostPosted: Fri Dec 11, 2009 7:41 am
by Kerry Moore
Jens wrote:
Kerry Moore wrote:Why didn't you ask me, ...


Kerry, PLEASE.

Quite obvious, isn't it?

Anyway, do you know some more stories regarding this subject? We all would be very interested.


Hi Jens.

If it's obvious then sorry. I thought everyone know I was from West Bromwich, which is why I bought my car. As a kid I used to go to the factory to watch the cars coming in and out of the gates.

In a recent JOC mag I went with Keith Anderson to interview Ron Tedstone who worked at the factory for many years and he told us that he used to go to the Wheatsheaf for a pint with Eric Neale to discuss engineering issues, usually drawn on the back of a fag packet.

PostPosted: Sat Dec 19, 2009 11:05 pm
by Keith
VFK44 wrote:On my return from the JOC International this year, I diverted to West Bromwich to seek out the Carter's Green Jensen site.
I did some research and found it was currently owned/used by Sandwell Council's Youth Projects department. They unfortunately told me it was destined to be demolished in 2010. That will disturb some ghosts...


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It will disturb some ghosts Stephen, and here are three of them. Amazing how nothing much has changed over the years. Better get up there to take more photos I think.

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Look at the cut of Alan Jensen's suit - class!

PostPosted: Sun Dec 20, 2009 12:45 pm
by Wallace
Interesting to see that you can still pick out individual bricks from each photo too after all these years.

Mike

PostPosted: Sun Dec 20, 2009 9:53 pm
by ffdave
Interesting stuff!, i had assumed it was all flattened long ago. Here's an aerial view with the old building in the centre, anyone know how far the Jensen works extended to?.

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Dave.

PostPosted: Mon Dec 21, 2009 1:08 am
by VFK44
Thanks for the great picture, Keith! It is an amazing match to where I parked my tin can.

Remember that I shot these photos randomly, without any old pictures as a guide. Especially with the general factory view, I feel linked to the past by the way that 50 years ago a Jensen press photographer made a conscious decision on the best spot to stand to capture the essence of the whole site. And in 2009, I made exactly the same calculations and decisions and ended up standing on the same square metre (or square yard in his case) to snap the photo. Society and technology moves on, but we are still just the same underneath.

Stephen

PostPosted: Thu Jul 15, 2010 11:48 am
by VFK44
Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council
Report to the Cabinet Member for Culture and Leisure Services
18th March 2010
Disposal of ... Control House, Shaftesbury Street, West Bromwich

6.3
Control House is a low rise office building to the rear of West Bromwich High Street. The property appears to be beyond economic use so demolition and redevelopment is envisaged.
Accordingly the costs of demolition have been included in the calculation of value.


Beyond economic use? Maybe we should make a bid for the Club to run it as a Jensen archive centre!

PostPosted: Thu Jul 15, 2010 7:45 pm
by sandro botticelli
wait a minute - if we get the building, or preferably the site, listed asap, then with listed building status nobody will be demolishing it any time soon.

anyone here know anyone at english heritage? or is there on the register anyone who works at english heritage?

i think this should be made a priority of the Club; it is inconceivable we can let the place where all our cars got designed and built be demolished.

we can also hold the international weekend and other events there, as well as using it as archives, not to mention some actual vehicle maintenance;

who's in??

PostPosted: Thu Jul 15, 2010 9:18 pm
by MikeWilliams
Count me in Sandro. Suggest you call English Heritage and ask what the procedure is. They can make "spot" listings where necessary, but you'll have to come up with good reasons for the listing as they don't expect to do any ground work for you.

Mike

PostPosted: Fri Jul 16, 2010 11:20 am
by sandro botticelli
Mike

thanks will do; on the EH criteria for listing they say that in industrial buildings, remarkable vehicles were often assembled in unremarkable buildings so that is not usually a reason for listing; we will have to look for other criteria.

just to be clear, can i please ask what is left on the site now, just the office building in the photos, or does any of the manufacturing (?) or assembly part of the factory survive?

PostPosted: Fri Jul 16, 2010 12:15 pm
by VFK44
Just the Front building - which is probably a blessing, because who would (realistically) want an acre of rusting pre-war factory buildings, whereas a neat little Admin block and car park could still find a use. It seems to be the part heavily featured in Jensen publicity too. Is there anyone living in the area who can give us an idea if there is a genuine wish to redevelop? Are property prices improving in West Brom?

Here is a link to the Sandwell Planning Portal.
http://webcaps.sandwell.gov.uk/PublicAccess/propdb/property/property_detailview.aspx?module=P3&keyval=001YWUNRLI000&propno=000032111313&showmap=true
(The map should work with I.E., but it wouldn't work with my Chrome browser).

There was a 2006 planning proposal for houses, which is viewable from the above website. A nice aerial shot appear higher in this thread, showing the size of the building plus some sort of (temporary?) block in the car park. A developer might need the factory entrance as entry to his housing development.
Stephen