The Parish of Clent
The five hamlets of our Parish nestle beneath the lovely Clent Hills. From its first appearance in the Domesday Book until recent times, Clent was a small rural parish involved with farming and the making of farm implements. The scythe makers have gone, but besides agriculture, the population of around 1200 are now involved in a variety of trades, businesses and professions. Many people work in the nearby Black Country or in Birmingham, but a number of pubs and restaurants, a garden centre and a hairdresser provide local employment.
A couple of miles from neighbouring Hagley, along the Bromsgrove Rd., the first hamlet encountered is Lower Clent, delightful old cottages and the ‘French Hen’ pub. Just beyond the well-kept roundabout are Clent Nurseries and café, and the road then narrows, through ‘The Rocks’, a rough-hewn cutting, with houses perched above, their garages tunnelled from the sandstone beneath.
The road emerges at Holy Cross, the largest hamlet. Here is the primary school, the Bell & Cross pub, Clent Hair Design, and Centenary Field. The Field hosts the Cricket Club, with Clent Social Club and the children’s playing fields nearby.
Up Church Avenue the traveller will find the Alfred Roberts Parish Hall, centre for the many village social and cultural events, and a little further on, past the Jaipur Cottage restaurant is St. Leonard’ s Church, Clent’s principal place of worship.
To the left of the church a road rises through the hamlet of Clatterbach, with a row of ancient cottages and the Vine pub, under the lea of wooded Clent Hill. To the right another lane leads up to Walton Pool, a quiet cluster of houses and farms on the slopes of Walton Hill.
Down from the church, Odnall Lane meanders past the lovely Elsie Partington Walk and the old School House, around the hillside and down to the Fountain Inn, at Adams Hill. This, the fifth hamlet of Clent, also boasts the Four Stones Restaurant and the Hill Tavern. Paths from here lead up to the ‘Four Stones’ Cromlech and the top of Clent Hill, with magnificent views all around. Woodman lane winds down from the Fountain back again to Lower Clent.
The pages of this website and links will give more details of the delights of Clent Parish. Article courtesy of Stan Bloxham, with thanks.