Dark Lane Road
Research Contributors: Mike Houlston and Melville Rogers
A map of the area dated 1752 shows that a road called Dark Lane ran directly from Priorslee Village to Stirchley. The name possibly derives from the dark waste furnace cinders from the surrounding industries that may have surfaced the road.
The remainder of Dark Lane Village was built as a result of the industries emerging in the area (1830). A new road was constructed turning right after the Shrewsbury to Birmingham Railway bridge and down into the village.
This then became the main road running between Priorslee and Stirchley because of the better construction. The old road continued to be used to access local farm fields. The road (new one or old one?) was a dirt road until after the Second World War when it was eventually tarmacked.
The trees in the distance can still be seen in Hollinswood with one tree serving as a memorial for someone from more recent times.
Below is an image that shows the original road from the north side (Priorslee). On the corner was Lees Farm, where they had geese that would chase after you! Further along on the left hand side can be seen the original walls that divided the road from adjacent farm land.
The children of the village would walk the Lane to get to local schools, both to the south and north of the Lane. This included Priorslee and St Georges in the north and Malinslee and Langley in the south. Part of the Lane, both in the north and south still exist.
“Melville recalls when going to school she would cycle for all she was worth past the Withy Pool (Telford Town Park) …. because of a story that it was reputedly haunted because someone had committed suicide by drowning in it” (Dennis. J. Rogers and, Melville Rogers (2002) Dark Lane the Forgotten Village of Telford, p.24)
The Withy Pool still exists at Telford Town Park. It is believed that my Grandad had the fishing rights at the pool. This is something to be investigated further alongside the sad suicide drowning and rumoured haunting.
Dark Lane Road is now a pathway with bridges that cross over Stafford Park, the Shrewsbury to Birmingham Railway, the M54 and the A442, picking up the pathway across Telford Town Park to Stirchley and Hinkshay Road.
- Rogers, D and Rogers, M (2002). Dark Lane: the Forgotten Village of Telford
- Heritage Lottery Funded Miner’s Walk Memory Recording Events (Greenways Farm, St Georges November 2017, Turnpike Court St Georges January 2018)
- Shropshire Archives.
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