On my blog you can see some of the pictures that I took during my trip to the West Midlands on February 7 & 8. I took pictures of 14 Gurdwaré and also some of the Wolverhampton tram. Together with those I made when I was working for the Sikh Times I have now pictures of all but 5 of the West Midlands (excluding Coventry) Gurdwaré.
I went from Marylebone Station to Snow Hill in Birmingham by Chiltern Railways, which takes about 2½ hours and cost me only £ 5.00 ! From Snow Hill I took the Wolverhampton tram to Smethwick and a local bus from there to Walsall. I stayed too long with my friends (we enjoyed talking to each other) and got to Wolverhampton later than planned.
I first went to the Ramgarhia Sabha in Newhampton Road East (next to the Wolverhampton Wanderers Stadium) and the Ramgarhia Board and Temple in Westbury Street. Do not ask me why there is a need to have two Ramgarhia ‘Temples’ so close to each other, do not ask me why we have these caste based Gurdwaré, they are there and I took pictures.
I decided to leave the Cannock Road Gurdwara for my next visit, as it is well outside central Wolverhampton. So off to Upper Villiers Street taking a bus that dropped me just outside the Guru Teg Bahadur Gurdwara. It was amazing to see how many people attended on a Saturday afternoon, just around the corner from one of the biggest Gurdwaré in the UK.
The Guru Nanak Sikh ‘Temple’ in Sedgley Street is not a massive building like the new Singh Sabha in Southall, but I think that the total floor space in the Sedgley Road Gurdwara is bigger. Here no money has been wasted on costly building material, it is mostly ordinary bricks and mortar.
My final call in Wolverhampton was the Guru Nanak Gurdwara on the Lea Road. This is a house converted to a Gurdwara, with a grumpy young man on the ground floor reading a Panjabi Newspaper and upstairs a nice looking older man reading from the Guru Granth Sahib. I bet their Akhand Paths are a bargain compared with what the big Gurdwaré charge.
From Lea Road I took a bus to the Wolverhampton Bus Station, from where I took a bus to Walsall. I got off in Willenhall to take some pictures of the Guru Nanak Parkash Gurdwara, designed by the same architect that designed the Guru Nanak Gurdwara on the West Bromwich Road in Walsall.
Although I did not enter all the Gurdwaré I saw, my yatra was very enjoyable. You get a feeling of what happens in Sikh communities when you visit the areas where the Sikhs live and where the Gurdwaré are. By the way, I saw many open beards in Wolverhampton and Walsall.
Click on the link to see my collection of Gurdware pictures !