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Dudley Travel Guide

Today Dudley is a vibrant bustling town with its feet firmly in the 20th century, but with a lasting and proud respect for the town’s place in Britain’s industrial heritage.

Nowhere is this more visible than at the Black Country Living Museum, a 26 acre urban and industrial park, with literally thousands of exhibits tracing the industrial importance of Dudley and the surrounding area. The Museum, one of the best in England, has displays of early vehicles, a recreated factory, underground coalmine workings and a working canal basin.

The Museum lies in the grounds of Dudley Castle perched on top of a small hill, where for 900 years it has surveyed the areas changing landscape. The castle is open to the public and is accessible though the grounds of Dudley Zoo, home to a wide variety of animals from around the world. The zoo has an education unit, tropical house and is currently rumoured to be changing its policy and becoming a conservation centre for British wildlife only.

The town centre is full of activity with shoppers and office workers rubbing shoulders. The town has a good range of retail outlets including most of the national multiples and a number of speciality shops. Close by is the massive Merry Hill shopping centre, one of the largest in Britain.

The Black Country in general has a large ethnic community particularly people of Asian origin. Many settled in the Dudley area in the 1950’s and have now firmly stamped their identity on the town’s make up. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the large number of Asian and Balti restaurants, there are literally hundreds of them, serving some of the most authentic Asian cuisine in the country.

The area is also famed for its beer, and is a noted stronghold for ‘real’ cask conditioned ales. The Delph, an area south of Dudley town centre has a well earned reputation as real ale drinkers oasis, with a more than healthy choice of pubs, the ‘leaning’ Crooked House perhaps being the most famous.

Within a short drive of Dudley are numerous places that would defy any trace of anything vaguely industrial ever taking place. Himley Hall an 18th century listed building in beautifully landscaped gardens, was once the home of the Earl of Dudley. Sandwell Valley Country Park is a great rural retreat with rolling parkland, woodlands, wildfowl lakes and ponds. The park has a number of picnic sites, wildlife refuges and the ruins of an ancient Benedictine monastery. The park also has a working farm raising a number of rare breeds of farm animal including the relatively local Tamworth Pig.

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Dudley Travel Guide, Attractions and Highlights
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