George Lloyd, or “Banger“
This story of George Lloyd, or “Banger “, has he was commonly known, as been read by people who knew him. They have confirmed its authenticity, and added other anecdotes. Not only was he an accomplished poacher, but he had been known to heal sick animals. One such story, told to me by the owner of a pedigree cocker spaniel, happened when the dog had tried to byte a hedgehog. The dog severely damaged the roof of his mouth and eventually could not hold any-thing in it. “Bring him down” said Banger, I’ll soon fix that”. The dog was taken to Banger’s house and the owner told to hold it tightly. He then commenced to continually suck on his clay pipe until it was glowing red. He tipped the tobacco out and quickly placed the pipe in the dog’s mouth, and pressed it against the roof of his mouth. The dog took some holding, but eventually the pipe was removed, and the dog settled down. A couple of weeks later the dog was back to normal and would carry anything.
The clay pipe; mentioned above and can be seen in the photograph, had cotton wrapped around the stem. This was to prevent the stem from sticking to his lips and pulling the skin off.
There are also stories told about his football refereeing days. A couple of days before a match he would visit one of the teams local pub. Making it plain that if they kept his beer glass full, they would win the match. Needles to say; Banger did not pay for his beer that day. Next day he would visit the opposing team, and again, spend the day in the pub without paying for his beer. On the day of the match, he would leave his bicycle near a gap in the hedge or near the exit. On the final whistle, he was off, and nobody saw Banger for the next few days but eventually, all was forgiven.
The secret hiding place, mentioned in the Poacher article, was a large hole dug in the ground and covered by a tin sheet. Soil and grass were then placed on top of this. The hole was situated near a path that passed close to the back of Banger’s house, in Station Road, Lawley Bank. The path connected with the railway line and to the top of the Rock.
By Malcolm Peel