Wire Hill History and Living

The district of Wire Hill is one of the most southerly areas of Redditch. Woodrow is to its north, Oakenshaw is to the west, and the Warwickshire boundaries are to the east and south.

The Wire Hill was originally mixed agricultural land and remnants of this can been seen today. Cattle were herded across Wire Hill woods where a number of water troughs can be found; indeed in the 1980’s before Ettingley & Fernwood Closes existed cattle could be found grazing on this land area. The land was also used as an orchard. On the original section of Nine Days Lane old pear trees can be seen; sometimes dropping fruit on unexpected visitors.

But the woods also has an industrial heritage. Gravel was extracted, as evidenced by a large number of earth works and transported to a pond in nearby Woodrow where it was washed before being used to polish needles in the many specialist factory across Redditch. The Woodrow pond is now filled in; but needle production process can be seen at the Forge Mill Needle Museum at Bordesley Abbey.

The Wire Hill estate has two woods close by; Wire Hill Wood which runs towards Oakenshaw & Rough Hill Wood which runs towards the Warwickshire boundaries. To the casual observer there is no distinction between these two woods; however if you look closer there are coloured post markers as Wire Hill is maintained by Worcestershire & Rough Hill by Warwickshire. There is even a small lake in there. The area also had a single track railway that ran between Redditch & Stratford upon Avon. The remains of a bridge can be found near to Woodrow Drive & a converted Railway Station is to be found on Green Lane. The newer ‘cycle track’ alongside Nine Days Lane used to be part of the old railway track.

The Wire Hill estate is made up of 189 properties; the external designs of these are varied as the various builders used the varied topography of the land to influence the individual property design. The original estate, built in the early 1980s, consisted of Batsford, Cornwell & Danzey Closes, and Nine Days Lane up to the traffic calming road position. A number of different builders were involved over this period of time; one of the early ones went bankrupt. The next phase was the building of Ettingley & Fernwood Close, and the lower end of Nine Days Lane. Finally Atworth Close was built; this was originally to be called Kingswood Height, but ‘someone’ in the Council obviously thought we have a B,C,D, E & F; maybe we should start with an A.

The area is relatively quiet as it is some distance from the main traffic flow on Woodrow Drive and has no factories nearby. Public transport is available from a wide number of buses that stop at the Alexandra Hospital, including a direct service to Birmingham, and there are many that go into Redditch for onward connections by both bus and rail. The community is made up of young couples, working families and retirees. Our Wire Hill Residents Association (WHRA) currently has some 250 members who have joined to benefit from sharing issues and concerns regarding our common interests.