William Dargue A History of BIRMINGHAM Places & Placenames from A to Y
Reddicap, Reddicap Heath, Reddicap Hill
B75/ B76 - Grid reference SP139957
Redicop Heath: first record 1821
In 1763 Mother Red-Cap Farm stood here and this may be the origin of the name. Cap may indicate a high point, a look-out or possibly a beacon. The high point would be Reddicap Hill which rises between the valleys of Plantsbrook to the west and Langley Brook to the east.
The eastern slope of the hill is Reddicap Heath, heathland being easily worked but agriculturally poor land. The 1841 Census spelled the name as Ready Cap. The modern urban district is largely a development of the mid-20th-century.
Left: The photograph shows the point where Sutton ends and the Warwickshire countryside begins. Old Langley Hall is on the horizon. (See Langley.) Text by Adrian Bailey on Geograph.
Reddicap Hill is behind the photographer; Springfield Road runs left-right across the picture, as does the valley of Langley Brook beyond.
No.59 Reddicap Hill is an interesting survival. It is possibly an early Vesey cottage dating from mid-16th century. Single-storeyed and built of sandstone, it has a pitched roof made of old clay tiles.
Vesey houses are named after Bishop Vesey who, after a successful church and court career, returned to find his home town of Sutton Coldfield in decline. He spent a great deal of money on various projects in the manor, and used his influence with Henry VIII to carry them out.
John Harman, alias Veysey, Bisshope of Excestar borne in this towne, much manetynge the decay of it got a new prevelege of Kynge Henry the 8. for restorynge the market there, and began to repayre and build new howses ther, and furtharmore obtayned licence to deforest the chace there; whereupon he buildyd dyvars praty howsys of stone in the forest, and plantyd his pore kynesmen in them, allotynge ground conveniently unto the howsys, for the whiche the tenaunts bere the Kynge a mean rent.
John Leland Itinerary through England & Wales 1540-146
For other Vesey houses, see High Heath, Little Sutton, Maney, and Walmley.
William Dargue 14.03.2009/ 30.07.2010
For 19th-century Ordnance Survey maps of Birmingham go to British History Online.
Map below reproduced from Andrew Rowbottom’s website of Old Ordnance Survey maps Popular Edition, Birmingham 1921. lick the map to link to that website.