Let us take you on a journey through Alum Rock and Saltley over the past few decades.

Discover what the area looked like many years ago and how its changed into the Saltley we know today.

See and read about local people and places and re-live their  lives through their stories.


  • My sister had a washing machine they all used to pirate! You’d see some woman dragging a washing machine up the street, dragging it into the house, doing the washing. It was an old-fashioned one with a top on, and a ringer, you know? And it leaked. You couldn't have it in the house, you had to have it just outside the door because of the leak running down the drain. And you’d get all your washing done, and she’d drag it back to our Doreen saying, “Thanks, Dor...I've done my washing. I’ll be back”.

    Mrs Walsh, Saltley 1966


  • It was my first time to see a double-decker bus, and when we come to Saltley, with the pelican crossing, with the yellow light flashing, I asked Pat, “Why is this flashing all the time?”. And of course it was a pedestrian crossing which I had never seen before. That was my first impression of Alum Rock.

    Mr T. Joyce,  aged 67




  • The first house they bought was 106 Ralph Road and his first wife lived for two years, but from what I gather she found it very difficult, a very lonely place to live because I heard there were hardly any other women from Kashmir then, so she wanted to go back he could not stay here any more.

    Mr Khan, memories of 1962

  • Well, I think, looking at Alum Rock, and most other areas as well, not just Alum Rock on its own, one thing that does strike you, the place has got so untidy. Nobody seems to look after their houses like they did years ago. Some of the entries are full of rubbish, and back gardens are full of car parts. So it is a complete disgrace in some cases.

    Mr Joyce, previous resident of Alum Rock

  • St Saviour’s is probably 99% Muslim. My friend Sandra’s daughter went to St Saviour’s and I think she and one other boy were the only two white kids in the school. Because someone said to Sandra once, “What are you letting them go to that school for?”, and Sandra said, “Well, why shouldn’t she? It’s a school”. This young girl got 9 O levels and 10 A levels and went to university, so it didn’t do her any harm to go to a bloody 99% Muslim school, did it?

    Saltley resident

  • I’ve heard stories that there would be twenty-plus men at a time living in a house. Those who worked during the night slept during the day, and those who worked during the day slept during the night. So there was shared accommodation.

    Memories of early Pakistani Migrants