Chelmsley Wood Baptist Church faith//hope//love

  • BS. Enjoy.

    In the light of the last blog, and to address the councillor’s dismissive ‘fantasy’ comments, I would like to respond (let’s face it, they’re unlikely to invite to speak at the council meeting). The statement from Cllr Hill jnr that it’s ‘all BS’ is not entirely unfounded. Although Chelmund stands in good stead with Robin Hood, King Arthur, Robert the Bruce, St George, Childe the Hunter and countless other localised legends. But here’s a brief foray into the world of Chelmund the Saxon (with a sword and shield).

    The bare facts are: the name Chelmsley comes from Ceolemundsheia (with a few variant spellings over the centuries). Ceolmund is a male Saxon name. ‘Heia’ means ‘enclosure’ or field, so the oldest recorded name for this area is ‘Ceolmunds Field’. From this we can deduce that at some time in the dark ages a man called Ceolmund (likely to be Saxon or of Saxon descent) owned a field here. That’s it. This is fact and is recorded in the Domesday book of the 11th century. Before that there were very few written records (virtually none by saxons).

    The legend of Chelmund (using the modern spelling) is just that, a legend.

    The legend of Chelmund is (ironically) a positive one about overcoming differences and learning to live together. It evolved to bring a bit of pride to our community, to get away from the view that this is just a storyless, concrete jungle. The legend of Chelmund adds a bit of colour and a bit of fun to our community. I know the council do get this because in the past they have been active in planting trees and protecting the natural areas, so why not now add a bit of magic? No-one is being harmed by it, no-one is being ripped off or put down by it, no-one’s position of power is being threatened, it’s just a story, so why not? What’s the objection to the kids taking a bit of interest in our history and surroundings. What’s the objection to adults getting intrigued by local history and exploring the past, be it mythical or historical? Because once you get people’s interest with this you find them talking about the present, about how we became the community we are now.

    So, even if the story offends your sense of historical accuracy, please just enjoy the story.

    If they can find a king under a car park, surely we can find a bit of legend in our woodlands.

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Neil (the minister) occasionally gets round to blogging so welcome to the trivia and ramblings of an erratic stream of consciousness.

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