Block Capital

I’m very cheerful to be involved with the new Block Capital project that the Distinctly Black Country network are running. It’s great to be getting back into doing some actual social research, and this ties in with my academic interest in Wolverhampton and the Black Country, and my personal interest in the rise and fall of schemes like this (cf. ring roads) to “help” the poor.

I feel the scare quotes are warranted here: many would argue that slum clearance schemes and their subsequent replacement with bold, modernist ideals, have created more problems than they’ve solved. But that’s probably a bigger argument than I can deal with right now…

I’m currently considering what angle I’m going to take in my own participation. Based on my own background and interests, I’ll probably be looking at the clearance of preceding housing and the emplacement of households into such blocks, to try and figure out some of the rationales and reasoning for these blocks. I’m pretty excited to be honest, I’m going to go and make a map.

They’re still looking for plenty of volunteers: more details here:

The full list of blocks to receive particular attention is:

Arthur Greenwood Court, a1963/-, Wolverhampton
Hugh Gaitskell Court, a1963/-, Wolverhampton
Winston Churchill Court, a1963/-, Wolverhampton
Clem Atlee Court, a1963/-, Wolverhampton,
Wesley Court, <1971/2003-3, Wolverhampton
Trinity Court, <1971/2003-4, Wolverhampton
St. Stephens Court, <1971/2003, Wolverhampton
St Mary’s Court, a1964/-, Walsall
St Anne’s Court, a1962/-, Walsall
St Giles Court, a1962/-, Walsall
Alma Court, ~1975/2001, Walsall
Leys Court, ~1975/2001, Walsall
Russell House, 1966/-, Sandwell
Bolton Court #1, 1965/~1990, Sandwell
Bolton Court #2, 1965/2011, Sandwell
Bolton Court #3, 1965/2011, Sandwell
Jellico House, 1967/2004, Sandwell
Beatty House, 1967/2004, Sandwell
Nelson House, a1963/-, Sandwell
Drake House, <1970/2002, Sandwell

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