Standing the test of time: The White Swan in Digbeth
The White Swan public house on Bradford Street, Digbeth has been somewhat of an icon and meeting place within the Irish Quarter for many years and even now with factories and properties around it have been flattened to ground, the building still stands proud.
The pub has been in the Creaton family, from Roscommon, for over 46 years and has seen generations of Irish clientele use its facilities, from the patrons who frequented it in the 1960s and now the grandchildren of those families still use the bar to this day.
The White Swan was the meeting place for the original committee members who reintroduced the Birmingham St. Patrick’s Day Parade to the City in 1996 after an absence of 22 years. Also the Midlands Republic of Ireland Soccer Supporters Club held its first ever meeting in the cosy back room.
Maggie, Angela and Bridget Creaton have all competed in The World Irish Dancing Championships in their many years of Irish dancing, where they started under the instruction of Mary Fogarty Dancing School at St Anne’s Club also in Digbeth. Andrew has been living with his family in Australia for over 15 years and the new picture behind the bar was taken on his recent visit back to Birmingham.
Digbeth has changed in recent years and the industry and factory units that used to surround The White Swan have now been torn down; the historic and listed Pub now stands alone although it’s still as warm and welcoming as it has always been.
The original picture attached, was taken in 1989 on the opening night after a major refurbishment. The recently reconstructed replica was taken on 28/09/2015 in one the famous few Irish pubs in Birmingham.