Linking The Past To The Present - Part 2
The show was a great success with twenty seven Staffords on show that day including:
Shaws Jim (Jim the Dandy), Birche's Monty (Vindictive Monty), Peggs Joe (Fearless Joe), Harpers Dreadnought, Silver Queenie, Our Paddy, Foxalls Lady, Tranters Bessie, Brindle Tigress, Brindle Thelma, Hardwicke's Flossie, Smiths Brindle, Brave Nell, Shell Of Gold, Laws Queenie and Quick The Devil. The dogs that competed that day have since been made famous by the progeny they left behind them.
Following the show, Mr Dunn decided to form a club and enlisted the assistance of those owners who had kept and bred the breed for years. A meeting was held at the Old Cross Guns Hotel in Cradley Heath and the name "The Staffordshire Bull Terrier Club" was agreed as the name of the Club by those present. The name was subsequently granted by the Kennel Club in July 1935 and so, our wonderful breed "officially" began.
The first elected officers and committee of the SBTC were as follows:
Mr Jack T Barnard President
Mr H N Beilby Chairman
Mr Joseph Dunn Hon. Secretary
Other members/Committee: Jack Dunn, Harry Peg, M Smith, Joseph T Mallen, J Skidmore, Fred W Holden, S Grew, S W Poole, B Hardwicke, J Birch, C Grosvenor, Horace Priest, G Homer, H Hough, G Williams, A Forrest, M Hill, A Demaine, A Slater, N Dunn, H Boxley, T B Bishop, J W Wood, T W Barnard, A Foxall, W Shakespeare, A Griffiths, F Silvers and Gerald A Dudley.
Mr Dunn has said "without the co-operation of these persons it would have been impossible to have formed such a club and these should be considered as the pioneers of the Staffordshire Bull Terrier Club."
So, how do the beginnings of our illustrious breed link to me today, sat here, writing this article - how do I link to the past and what story is there to be told? Well, here goes.............
My father, Harry Robinson, was born and raised around Staffords by his Grandparents, who lived in Rowley Regis, near Blackheath. He came from a family of workers in the iron and chain industries of the Black Country - the traditional owners and breeders of the Fighting Terrier, Bull and Terrier or Pit-Dog as the Stafford was more commonly known outside of the Black Country. It had long been known as the Staffordshire Bull Terrier or Stafford (not Staffy, Staffie or Staff - it's a Stafford!) by us Black Country folk!!
In 1969 Harry's uncle, Dick Siviter, a keen Stafford enthusiast himself (but an even keener pigeon flyer!), gave Harry, and his new wife Maureen, a Stafford puppy as a wedding present. This didn't go down too well with Maureen, a cat-lover, but she quickly grew fond of the white and brindle pied bitch they had, aptly named Patch - Kennel Club name Patchy Lass.