The Black Country Society abhors the destruction of the Crooked House public house, along with the obvious inadequacies of current measures designed to protect the historic environment, highlighted by this incident.
The Crooked House was the best, and virtually the last, example of a building seriously affected by coal-mining subsidence in the Black Country. Other examples include: the Tilted Barrel public house in Tipton, and Jurushah Tilted Cottage, at the Black Country Living Museum. Therefore, this building was architecturally significant and provided tangible evidence of the region’s proud industrial past.
The Crooked House was also emblematic of the unique character of the Black Country, and the loss of this much-loved local landmark has come as a tragic shock to all right-minded people across the West Midlands, and beyond. It is no exaggeration to state, the wanton destruction of the Crooked House has left many grieving for the passing of an ‘old friend’, and the happy memories it evoked.
The sorry fate of the Crooked House must now act as a clarion call to everyone who wants to protect and conserve our nation’s precious history. This case demonstrates the urgent need for people to become more aware of planned developments in their local areas, and a readiness to take action to prevent irreparable damage to the historic environment – before it’s too late.
The Black Country Society has established a project to capture the lasting legacy of this beloved landmark, provisionally entitled The Crooked House Remembered. This will include drawing together a wide range of written and visual material and also an oral history project that will enable memories and reminiscences of the building and all that took place there to be recorded and preserved. Further details will appear on the society’s website and social media in the near future.