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Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
/ˈwɜːrli/ is a civil parish and large village in the district of South Staffordshire, England, forming part of the Staffordshire
Staffordshire
border with the metropolitan borough of Walsall, West Midlands. It had a population of 11,060 at the 2011 census.[1]

Contents

1 History

1.1 Etymology 1.2 Early history 1.3 Post-Industrial Revolution 1.4 The ' Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
Outrages'

2 Politics 3 Localities 4 Schools 5 Transport 6 Nearest Settlements 7 Notes and references 8 External links

History[edit] Etymology[edit] The word "Wyrley" derives from two Old English
Old English
words: wir and leah. Wir meant "bog myrtle" and leah meant "woodland clearing", suggesting that Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
began as sparse woodland or marshland. "Great" refers to its dominant size over Little Wyrley.[2] Early history[edit] Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
is mentioned in the Domesday Book
Domesday Book
under the name of Wereleia, and as early as 1086 is said to have been indirectly owned by the Bishop of Chester St John's as part of the "somewhat scattered holdings" of the Church of Saint Chad
Saint Chad
in Lichfield. Some 480 acres of farming land were, assumingly, evenly distributed between Wyrley and nearby Norton Canes. However, all six dependencies of Saint Chad
Saint Chad
had been labelled as "wasta", which meant they had been abandoned by the time the Domesday Book
Domesday Book
was made.[3][4]

Lord of the Manor

Manorialism
Manorialism
continued for a long period and the current holder of the rights to the feudal title of Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
Manor is, Anthony Henry Lord Great Wyrley, the freeholder of Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
and Essington Estates, Red Lane Essington, South Staffordshire, having acquired the title deeds from the Right Honourable Elizabeth Millicent Countess of Sutherland Duke of Sutherland
Duke of Sutherland
in 1989. There is considerable documentation (dating from 1397) relating to this very large manor in terms of land currently in the safekeeping of Staffordshire
Staffordshire
libraries. Post-Industrial Revolution[edit] In former times the town was a mining village — The Great Wyrley Colliery
Colliery
— with metalworking (such as for nails, agricultural implements and horseshoes) in outlying areas. The Wyrley and Essington Canal passes nearby. In 1848 Samuel Lewis included the settlement in his gazetteer and stated it had:

799 inhabitants and 1600 acres, of which the Duke of Sutherland
Duke of Sutherland
owned part; Several collieries[n 1]; The road from Walsall
Walsall
to Cannock
Cannock
passing through the village, long, and consisting of detached houses; In 1844, Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
it formed with Cheslyn Hay
Cheslyn Hay
a new ecclesiastical district, having a population of 1,753; St. Mark's Church, a highly finished structure in the early English style, built 1845, at a cost of £2430, of which sum £1200 was given by the Rev. William Gresley, prebendary of Lichfield; the remainder was raised by subscription, aided by £333 from the Diocesan, and £250 from the Incorporated Society; A perpetual curacy; patrons, the Dean and Chapter of Lichfield; A school, purchased from the Independents (Nonconformists), was opened in 1843 which cross-references the gazetteer entry Cannock.[5]

In 1876 Shapurji Edalji was appointed Vicar of Great Wyrley; he served until his death forty-two years later. A Parsi
Parsi
convert to Christianity from Bombay, he may well have been the first South Asian to become the incumbent of an English parish. The ' Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
Outrages'[edit] In 1903, the place was the scene of the " Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
Outrages", a series of slashings of horses, cows and sheep. In October, a local solicitor and son of the parson, George Edalji,[6] was tried and convicted for the eighth attack, on a pit pony, and sentenced to seven years with hard labour. Edalji’s family had been the victims of a long-running campaign of untraceable abusive letters and anonymous harassment in 1888 and 1892-5. Further letters, in 1903, alleged he was partially responsible for the outrages and caused the police suspicion to focus on him. Edalji was released in 1906 after the Chief Justice in Bahamas
Bahamas
and others had pleaded his case. But he was not pardoned, and the police kept him under surveillance. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Arthur Conan Doyle
of Sherlock Holmes fame was persuaded to "turn detective" to prove the man's innocence. This he achieved after eight months of work. Edalji was exonerated by a Home Office
Home Office
committee of enquiry, although no compensation was awarded. Local myth remembers the Outrages to have been enacted by "The Wyrley Gang", although Conan Doyle believed that they were the work of a single person, a local butcher's boy and sometime sailor called Royden Sharp. Ironically, Conan Doyle’s suspicion was based on circumstantial evidence. It was an over-reliance on this type of evidence in the first place which had resulted in Edalji’s flawed conviction. Poison pen letters in the name of the "Wyrley Gang" continued for another twenty-five years, but these were subsequently discovered to have been posted from outside the town by Enoch Knowles of Wednesbury, who was arrested and convicted in 1934.[7] This case has been related or retold:

Conan Doyle's The Story of Mr. George Edalji (1907, expanded re-issue in 1985). 1972 BBC anthology series The Edwardians: Arthur Conan Doyle
Arthur Conan Doyle
(one episode) centres on his involvement in the Edaji case. Written by Jeremy Paul and directed by Brian Farnham, it stars Nigel Davenport
Nigel Davenport
as Conan Doyle, Sam Dastor as George Edaji, and Renu Setna
Renu Setna
as the Reverend Edaji. Arthur & George by Julian Barnes (2005), nominated that year for the Man Booker Prize. In 2010, Arthur & George was adapted for the theatre by David Edgar[8] and, in 2015, for a three-part British television drama of the same title. A comprehensive non-fictional account Conan Doyle and the Parson's Son: The George Edalji Case by Gordon Weaver (2006). In Roger Oldfield's book Outrage: The Edalji Five and the Shadow of Sherlock Holmes, Vanguard Press (2010),[9] the case is set within the context of the wider experiences of the Edalji family as a whole. Oldfield taught history at Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
High School.

Politics[edit] The village has the unusual attribute of being within the historic "Metropolitan Borough of Walsall" which has wider boundaries than those of the administrative Borough of the same name, however this grants it certain rights and privileges not enjoyed by the administrative district South Staffordshire: chiefly the possibility of ceremonial visits of the mayor and the right for local honours, such as to become an honorary freeman or alderman of Walsall
Walsall
to be awarded to residents of Great Wyrley. There are two representatives on Staffordshire
Staffordshire
County Council, conservatives Kath Perry and Mike Lawrence[10] whose physically large ward is called Cheslyn Hay, Essington
Essington
and Great Wyrley. There are five representatives on South Staffordshire
Staffordshire
District Council:

Member Since Member[11]

Ward

2005 Brian Bates Great Wyrley

1987 Janet Johnson Great Wyrley

2007 Raymond Perry Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
Landywood

1995 Kathleen Perry Great Wyrley

2007 Kathleen Williams Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
Landywood

Localities[edit] Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
can be divided into two South Staffordshire
Staffordshire
wards: "Great Wyrley" and " Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
Landywood,"[12] the latter being home to the slightly more southern area of Landywood. However, the settlement of Little Wyrley lies within the parish of Norton Canes
Norton Canes
— a nearby village. Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
lies just under two-and-a-half miles south of Cannock town centre, just under two miles east of Cheslyn Hay, and three-and-a-half miles north of Bloxwich
Bloxwich
town centre.[13] Schools[edit] Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
has three primary schools and one high school:

Landywood Primary School[14] Moat Hall Primary School[15] St Thomas More Primary School[16] Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
High School[17]

Transport[edit]

Road

Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
economically is largely a dormitory for commuters to Birmingham
Birmingham
and Wolverhampton, and as a midpoint between Birmingham
Birmingham
and Stafford, or Walsall
Walsall
and Cannock
Cannock
more locally; by the parish boundaries are junctions T7 on the M6 Toll
M6 Toll
motorway and 11 of the M6.

Rail

Landywood railway station provides services south to Birmingham
Birmingham
New Street and north to Rugeley
Rugeley
Trent Valley. Wyrley and Cheslyn Hay railway station to the north of Landywood closed in the 1960s (see also: Beeching Report).

Buses

Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
is served by two bus routes running between Cannock
Cannock
and Walsall, and two bus routes running between Cannock
Cannock
and Wolverhampton:

Arriva Midlands route 1 Arriva Midlands route 2 Arriva Midlands route 68 and Arriva Midlands Route 69.[18]

Nearest Settlements[edit]

Nearest Settlements

Wedge's Mills, Saredon Bridgtown, Cannock Norton Canes

Cheslyn Hay
Cheslyn Hay
(contiguous)

Great Wyrley

Little Wyrley Brownhills

Essington Newtown (small hamlet in Essington
Essington
parish) Bloxwich Pelsall
Pelsall
Wood and Pelsall

Notes and references[edit]

Notes

^ "largely employing the population around." Per Lewis, below.

References

^ ward and town populations Archived 27 September 2007 at the Wayback Machine. Staffordshire
Staffordshire
County Council, retrieved 2013-04-02 ^ Etymology and History at Roman-Britain.org Archived 11 September 2009 at the Wayback Machine. ^ Etymology and History at Roman-Britain.org Archived 11 September 2009 at the Wayback Machine. ^ Wyrley - entry in translated Norman script Domesdaymap.co.uk. Great and Little are suggested by the text and this historical maps specialist to be one. ^ Samuel Lewis, ed. (1848). "Wyke - Wyvill". A Topographical Dictionary of England. Institute of Historical Research. Retrieved 2 April 2013.  ^ Weaver, Gordon. "Conan Doyle and The Parson's Son". The Plebeian. Retrieved 24 October 2010.  ^ The Times 7 November 1934 ^ Info on the stage adaption of "Arthur & George" at the Birmingham
Birmingham
Repertory Theatre's website ^ http://www.outrage-rogeroldfield.co.uk ^ http://moderngov.staffordshire.gov.uk/mgMemberIndex.aspx?bcr=1 ^ "Council Members". South Staffordshire
Staffordshire
District Council. Archived from the original on 19 March 2012. Retrieved 28 April 2012.  ^ Staffordshire
Staffordshire
County Council website showing South Staffordshire ward boundaries Archived 23 February 2012 at the Wayback Machine. ^ Results on "Google Maps" ^ http://www.landywoodprimary.co.uk/ Landywood Primary School ^ http://www.moathall.staffs.sch.uk/ Moat Hall Primary School ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 3 August 2006. Retrieved 16 September 2006.  St Thomas More Primary School ^ http://www.gw-hs.org/ Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
High School ^ Arriva Bus Routes 68, 69 and 70

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Great Wyrley.

Conan Doyle and the Parson's Son: The George Edalji Case The Parish of Great Wyrley Wyrley Wide Web (community site) George Edalji Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
Community Band

v t e

Arthur Conan Doyle

Bibliography

Sherlock Holmes

A Study in Scarlet
A Study in Scarlet
(1887) The Sign of the Four
The Sign of the Four
(1890) The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
Sherlock Holmes
(1892) The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes
Sherlock Holmes
(1894) The Hound of the Baskervilles
The Hound of the Baskervilles
(1902) The Return of Sherlock Holmes
Sherlock Holmes
(1904) The Valley of Fear
The Valley of Fear
(1914) His Last Bow
His Last Bow
(1917) The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes
Sherlock Holmes
(1927)

Professor Challenger

The Lost World (1912) The Poison Belt
The Poison Belt
(1913) The Land of Mist
The Land of Mist
(1926) "When the World Screamed" (1928) "The Disintegration Machine" (1929)

Other novels

The Mystery of Cloomber (1889) Micah Clarke
Micah Clarke
(1889) The Firm of Girdlestone
The Firm of Girdlestone
(1890) The White Company
The White Company
(1891) The Doings of Raffles Haw (1892) Beyond the City (1892) The Refugees (1893) The Parasite
The Parasite
(1894) The Stark Munro Letters
The Stark Munro Letters
(1895) The Exploits of Brigadier Gerard (1896) Rodney Stone
Rodney Stone
(1896) The Tragedy of the Korosko
The Tragedy of the Korosko
(1898) A Duet, with an Occasional Chorus (1899) Adventures of Gerard (1903) Sir Nigel
Sir Nigel
(1906) The Maracot Deep (1929)

Short stories

"J. Habakuk Jephson's Statement" (1884) "Lot No. 249" (1892) "The Case of Lady Sannox" (1893) "The Club-Footed Grocer" (1898) "The Brown Hand" (1899) "The Terror of Blue John Gap" (1910) "The Horror of the Heights" (1913) Danger! and Other Stories (1918)

Other

"The Inner Room" (1898) The Vital Message
The Vital Message
(1919)

Related

Charles Altamont Doyle James Doyle Richard Doyle John Doyle The Great Wyrley
Great Wyrley
Outrages Undershaw
Undershaw
(home)

v t e

Ceremonial county of Staffordshire

Unitary authorities

Stoke-on-Trent

Boroughs or districts

Cannock
Cannock
Chase East Staffordshire Lichfield Newcastle-under-Lyme South Staffordshire Stafford Staffordshire
Staffordshire
Moorlands Tamworth

Major settlements

Biddulph Burntwood Burton upon Trent Cannock Cheadle Eccleshall Fazeley Hednesford Kidsgrove Leek Lichfield Newcastle-under-Lyme Penkridge Rugeley Stafford Stoke-on-Trent

Burslem Fenton Hanley Longton Stoke Tunstall

Stone Tamworth Uttoxeter See also: List of civil parishes in Staffordshire

Rivers

Anker Blithe Churnet Dane Dove Manifold Mease Penk Sow Swarbourn Tame Trent Wheelock

Canals

Birmingham
Birmingham
& Fazeley Caldon Lichfield Shropshire Union Staffs & Worcestershire Trent & Mersey Wyrley & Essington

Topics

Flag Museums Schools Grade I buildings Grade II* buildings Windmills High Sheriffs

v t e

Civil parishes of South Staffordshire

Council

South Staffordshire
Staffordshire
District Council

Civil parishes

Acton Trussell, Bednall & Teddesley Hay Bilbrook Blymhill and Weston under Lizard Bobbington Brewood
Brewood
and Coven Cheslyn Hay Codsall Coppenhall Dunston, Staffordshire Enville Essington Featherstone Great Wyrley Hatherton Hilton Himley Huntington Kinver Lapley, Stretton and Wheaton Aston Lower Penn Pattingham
Pattingham
and Patshull Penkridge Perton Saredon Shareshill Swindon Trysull &

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