Reading some of the descriptions of the Black Country in the nineteenth century, one could be forgiven for believing the area stood at the gates of Hell. Much was made of burning heaps of coal and coke, with mining waste burying agricultural land and slag tips at the furnaces glowing red. The noise of hammers and machinery filled the air. Gradually, these industries have been replaced with warehouses and retail parks. These much quieter and cleaner industries have changed the landscape beyond all recognition along with the spread of housing over the West Midlands.Some twenty to thirty years ago it was possible to find odd corners of the Black Country that reminded one of the mining past. Most of these scenes have now gone, often replaced by housing and land reclamation schemes. However, in some locations, such as New Hawne, Warrens Hall and Himley Woods, something of the old Black Country remains, but without the blackness of colliery waste tips; most of which is now hidden under a carpet of greenery. We have, over the last century, lost an amazing amount of our industrial heritage to light industry and housing.