Archive Blip (October 2010)
A few months before this journal officially started I was in Birmingham for a work meeting. At the time (and indeed since) I was tracking down traces of my two sculptor/architect (likely) ancestors William and Peter Hollins (my Grandma being a Hollins from exactly the same part of Birmingham). The Birmingham Gun Barrel Proof House (tucked away behind the station) has an impressive sculpted coat of arms above the main entrance (not visible here) which is attributed to William (1813).
It was while trying to get a glimpse and picture of said coat of arms by peering through the gate pictured that a speaker beside me sprang to life inquiring what I was up to. Given that the Proof House is still performing the same function as it was originally developed for, it was fair enough that they would check me out. I muttered something about walking in the footsteps of my ancestors and sidled off.