31 Aug 2014
 Walsall MBC Homepage > History Projects > Birchills > Jack Haddock : Current Page

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St Matthew’s Church, 1793,  Gentleman’s Magazine

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Jack Haddock's Birchills

Jack in front of the Woodwork block at North Walsall SchoolJohn Frederick Haddock, better known as Jack, was born on 17th September 1927 in Hospital Street, Walsall. He moved to Webster Road in 1928, where he has lived for over seventy years. As a child, Jack could not help being fascinated with transport as the Webster Road area was surrounded by Ryecroft Locomotive Shed, Birchills Tram and Bus Depot and Peter Keay and Son Canal Boat Dock. He attended North Walsall Elementary schools (Infant, Junior and Senior) and showed interest and ability in History and Geography.

Jack has always been a railway enthusiast but he did not start to photograph locomotives until he discovered that steam traction was due to be phased out. Jack started to keep a photographic record of steam locomotives in 1954, when the locomotive 'Patriot' (No. 45500) came on the turntable at Ryecroft Motive Power Depot.

Jack realised that Walsall's infrastructure was changing and he extended his photographic work to record canals and bus transport, and especially trolley buses. Jack says, "It dawned on me that I was becoming a record photographer recording the changing face of Walsall".

Jack has continued his mission to keep a photographic record of Walsall's recent history and has a collection of between 15,000 and 20,000 images. In 1990, the copyright for part of this collection was acquired by Walsall Local History Centre for the benefit of anyone with an interest in the history of transport or the development of Walsall. Copies of images from the Jack Haddock collection can be purchased from The Local History Centre on application to Stuart Williams at localhistorycentre@walsall.gov.uk.