Just to the west of Birmingham lies the Black Country; there is some debate about how the name came to exist: as a consequence of the pollution caused by the Industrial Revolution or due to the coal that lies below the surface. Either way, most of the heavy industry and most of the coal has now gone.
There is also debate about exactly where the Black Country lies, but whatever arguments about the borders, the town of Dudley is definitely in it. Near the town centre is the Black Country Living Museum– living because you are encouraged to touch most of the exhibits and interact with the staff who take on the roles of ‘citizens’.
If you are in the area it’s well worth a visit.