‘Mason-ette’ is set to be ‘pop’ular at auction


A house with fizz is set to get the bids “bubbling over” when it comes up at CPBigwood’s next auction on Thursday, April 26.

With a guide price of  £195,000-£205,000, the Birmingham property was once the home of the Mason soft drinks family.

Indeed the address sort of gives it away – 100 Poplar Avenue, Edgbaston.

OK, it was named after the tree and not the lemonade!

But Mason’s pop was a very well-known brand and, now owned by Wednesbury-based Purity, still has a big following.

T. Mason & Sons, of Smethwick, was one of several firms in the area making soft drinks.

The business was started by Titus Mason, who in 1895 arranged for his soft drinks to be sold at an off licence in Cape Hill. From there everything took off and at one time the company’s specially designed factory in Grantham Road was one of the largest units of its kind in England.

But by the late 1990s the business seems to have fallen on hard times, and was acquired by Purity which itself dates back to 1892.

And Purity, maker of Juice Burst and Smoothie, continues to market 30 different Mason flavours in cordials, squashes and carbonated drinks.

“A famous brand with a truly great heritage, everyone knows Mason’s pop,” declares the Purity sales pitch.

100 Poplar Avenue is a substantial, traditional, detached property, standing on a significantly large plot, constructed in the 1926 when the area was mostly countryside.

It comprises two reception rooms and breakfast kitchen on the ground floor, with three bedrooms and a study/nursery above. It boasts “substantial gardens”.

However, the house is said to be “in need of refurbishment throughout”.

It is owned by widow Hazel Slater who latterly found both house and garden all too much for her.

Mrs Slater said: “There have been some internal alterations but essentially it is not much changed from the time the Masons had it.

“There is an enormous landscaped garden but sadly the brambles and the weeds have largely taken over. There is a brick pergola and summer house, a 200-year-old Ash tree, flower beds, a big vegetable garden and about the only three poplar trees left on the Poplar Estate.”

And there was once a conservatory but it has fallen into disrepair.

However the house still has its original stained glass windows.

CPBigwood director Jonathan Hackett, joint head of auctions, said: “I am confident this nostalgic link to days gone by will prove ‘pop-ular’.

“It brings to mind images of schoolboys in short trousers saving up their old pennies for a Mason’s treat.

“It is a character property of great distinction, but it does require modernisation.”

The auction takes place at the Holte Suite at Aston Villa Football Ground in Birmingham.