Friday April 20 2018

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Village News


Welcome to Barntchurch Newtown

The Green Belt around Alvechurch and Barnt Green is under threat – again. This time, it could be really serious . . .

Barntchurch: What do we know?

The Village delves into the housing study to see why this area is under threat and what ‘Barntchurch’ would really mean.

‘Don’t say its name’

There have been mixed responses to the GL Hearn report among parish and district councillors across The Village area, with some fearing that even by talking about it they might be giving it too much credence.

MP responds to Green Belt threat

Bromsgrove MP Sajid Javid has given his response to the Greater Birmingham Housing Market Area Strategic Growth Study, which proposes building thousands of homes on Green Belt land around Alvechurch and Barnt Green.

The voice of youth

Barnt Green’s new parish councillor, 18-year-old Sam Harris, shares his vision for the village.

Fighting for right of way

Barnt Green Parish Council has joined calls for a public right of way to be reopened.

Street light colour clash

Alvechurch parish councillors had a heated debate over the colour of village street lighting columns after a resident requested that a newly-replaced one on Snake Lane should be painted.

Picnic picks winning logo

As the final preparations for this year’s Alvechurch Picnic in the Park get under way, the event now has its official logo, chosen from entries into the annual competition.

Young talent on show

Talented youngsters showed off their musical skills as The Midland Sinfonia hosted its annual Young Musicians’ Showcase.

Snow lands parish with fun run bill

An unexpected spring snowfall forced the cancellation of Barnt Green’s Sport Relief fun run and cost villagers up to £500, parish councillors heard.

Consultation letters go astray

Residents of Bear Hill in Alvechurch are to be consulted on whether or not they would support the introduction of residents-only parking on their street.

Parish meeting dates

Village parish councils are preparing to hold their Annual Parish Meetings.

Station lifts meeting agreed

Network Rail representatives have agreed to a meeting with Barnt Green parish councillors on April 5, to discuss the lack of lifts at the village railway station. 

Parking restriction plan

Barnt Green Parish Council has asked Worcestershire County Council to look at the possibility of restricting parking on sections of Sandhills Lane and Sandhills Road.

High tea to fund smart toilets

An Oakalls resident is organising a “High Tea” event in Alvechurch to raise money for a Kenyan school.

Joker leads the pack

A Blackwell resident is celebrating after one of her dogs won Best of Breed at this year’s Crufts.

Toby’s 1,000-mile cycle challenge

Blackwell resident Toby Gosnall is preparing for a major cycle challenge to raise money for cancer charity Myeloma UK.

Community car scheme to continue

Rural Rides, the long-running Worcestershire community car scheme, has narrowly avoided closure thanks to Community Transport Wyre Forest (CTWF), which has agreed to take over the running of the service.

Ingenious murder mystery

Alvechurch Dramatic Society’s spring production is Deadly Nightcap, a thriller by the master of the genre, Francis Durbridge. 

The power of poetry

For the 12th year running, Alvechurch Middle School welcomed local poet Giovanni “Spoz” Esposito to work with all Year 8 pupils in a Poetry Slam Day. 

Tribute to canal women

The story of the women who kept Britain’s waterways working during World War Two is being brought to life by a boat-based theatre company.

Halfway there with hedge

An enthusiastic group of volunteers gathered at Tardebigge Community Hall car park to learn the traditional art of hedge laying.

Beastly delay for World Book Day!

Sarah Rees reports from the Oakalls and Parklands.

Get ready for pumpkin-fest

Following the success of last year’s event, Alvechurch will host its second Pumpkin Festival on Saturday October 27 in the Village Hall.

Esme’s £850 charity chop

A kind-hearted youngster has raised £850 for charity by having her long hair cut into a short bob.

Ava meets Vinny

Six-year-old Ava Peyton, of Barnt Green, was the latest winner of a Mini Vinny in our monthly competition, helped by three-year-old sister Esmee.

Time to tidy up

Alvechurch Village Society invites villagers to take part in a Springtime Litter Pick on Sun April 15 from 10.30am to 12.30pm.

New ideas for Lounge

Earlier in the year, The Lounge café and youth project started the Alvechurch Community Survey, writes manager Sarah James.

Catch of a lifetime

A village fisherman was amazed to catch a giant pike in the Worcester & Birmingham Canal at Alvechurch.

Here we come a-wassailing!

Mid-winter procession organised by Aelfgythe Border Morris proves the big bang theory applies in village finale.

Footpath safety fears

Lickey and Blackwell parish council heard that Hunters Hill School in Blackwell had diverted a public footpath that runs through school grounds.

‘Road watch’ may be upgraded

Hopwood’s “road watch” may be escalated as a result of an accident at the end of last year in which a pedestrian died.

Ready for village fun run

Barnt Green Chuggers running group have once again teamed up with the parish council to put on a Sport Relief 5k Fun Run, taking place on Sunday March 18.

Village reunion for poets

In November 2007, The Village carried a feature introducing a new local group, the Withybed Poets, writes Mary Green.

Sam, 18, to join parish council

Teenager Sam Harris was due to become a Barnt Green parish councillor as The Village went to press.

Fears over Lickey parking

Lickey residents and councillors are dismayed at Birmingham City Council’s plans to introduce parking charges for visitors to the Lickey Hills.

Great save at ’Church

An Alvechurch FC “superfan” whose life was saved by a new defibrillator at the club is hoping other sports clubs and village amenities follow Lye Meadow’s lead in installing the equipment.

Handing over a piece of history

Barnt Green WI has marked a new chapter in its history with the handing over of a special keepsake.

Verge parking plea

Damage caused by vehicles parking on grass verges was discussed by Lickey & Blackwell parish councillors after a resident asked them to discourage the practice via their newsletter.

Yellow lines plan for station

Double yellow lines are likely to be painted at the junction of Station Road and Latimer Road as parking problems around Alvechurch railway stations spill into the streets.

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Village Views


Lawton’s View

APRIL 2018

Lawton's View April 2018


Building homes on green fields is a profitable business. It is much simpler than taking on the challenge of brownfield sites and then, more often than not, the new homes have a greater value because of their lovely location.

New town would swamp us

A proposal is to be considered by Bromsgrove District Council for 15,000 new homes on land between Alvechurch and Barnt Green.

MP should support own community

Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government is the momentous title bestowed on Sajid Javid, our Member of Parliament.

Barnt Green folks deserve a first-class service

I am a retired gentleman of class, born and bred in Barnt Green, and am writing to say I am much looking forward to the newly-electrified railway link to Bromsgrove.

Icy scene in Barnt Green

Village reader Gill Hayes sent us this photo of an “icicle tree” on Sandhills Green, Barnt Green.

Lawton’s View

MARCH 2018

Lawton's View March 2018


When plans for the “new” Longbridge were first being discussed in the years after the closure of MG Rover in 2005, there was widespread recognition that the development would increase traffic flowing between the new homes, shops and businesses that would be created there and the motorway network through this area.

Better buses request

We have heard a lot recently about the state of the car park at Alvechurch railway station.

Bromsgrove wanted Brexit

I agree with the part of your January Village View that welcomes the “new blood” that has invigorated our local councils, but must strongly disagree with your wish that “Brexit reality will topple the current Government”.

Town parking fees are ‘brainless’

Every week in local newspapers there are complaints about parking in Bromsgrove – justifiably, in my opinion.

Fingers crossed for prediction

I hope your reading of the crystal ball for 2018 (Village View, January) is 100% correct.

Historical knowledge needed to understand case for Brexit

Like thousands across The Village mag’s catchment area, I get a tingle of excitement as each month ends, in eager anticipation of the next issue and the chance to voraciously consume its contents.

Protect our area from rubbish and urban sprawl

Hats off to the members of Alvechurch Village Society’s footpath group, who do so much physical work to ensure that the footpath network through our delightful countryside is in a usable state.

Please take more care of our verges

You may recall my letter in March 2017, lamenting the damage caused to grass verges by vehicles – well, it is truly verging on the ridiculous now!

Not a bridge too far

In response to Canon Rob Fieldson’s letter (“Prioritise rail cash”) in last month’s Village: I completely agree that disabled access should be greatly improved at Barnt Green, but not at the expense of the new footbridge.

Community spirit in ‘Lego Village’

My wife and I bought our “Lego House” in Cofton Hackett over four years ago. We settled in and watched happily as our family, and other families on Cofton Fields, grew.

Show us your evidence

I could not let go unchallenged the claim from your (unnamed) correspondent in January 2018 under the headline “Plagued by chariots of fire”.


Times, they are a changin’ . . . and they will keep on changing whatever any of us may feel about it.

Fuming outside the school gate

Is it worth mentioning that the popular practice of driving to school early and then sitting in the (large, diesel-powered) car with the engine running (so as to keep warm) is poisoning hundreds of young bodies?

Party pooper

I do hope that an apology from the editor of The Village is forthcoming. The irony of extolling the virtue of local democracy in choosing councillors but not of national democracy in choosing Brexit obviously escapes him.


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Village Features

Village Archive. . . 10 years ago

A look back at what was happening around here in April 2008.

The tree of life

Mary Green continues her series on trees in the Celtic calendar.

Mark Meads: Equity Release Specialist

Firstly I would like to thank you for the response to my last two adverts; I can really see how people value getting personal advice from a local advisor!

Celebrate flavour of spring

In the first of an occasional recipe series, keen baker Jen Morris, of Rowney Green, creates a juicy Jaffa Drizzle Cake.

The story of your life

A common source of regret for many of us is that we didn’t spend more time listening to the life stories of older relatives while they were still around.

Give up six things to save a deposit

There’s no need to rely on the ‘Bank of Mum and Dad’, writes Martin Pryor.

Weird sci-fi world

Amateur astronomer Brian Watkiss peers into the Village night sky.

Hypnotherapy for women

Are you a woman struggling to cope with anxieties or challenges? Do you feel as though you could do with some help or support?

Moderation all year round

Julie Ward is a qualified, experienced alcohol specialist who runs ACT Alcohol based in Bromsgrove. Her service provides one-to-one sessions to teach individuals how to gain control over their drinking.

What happened to spring?

Alvechurch amateur weatherman Phil Thomas records the changes.

Orchards and community

Hannah Genders introduces a special project celebrating our county’s fruit-growing.

AFC’s final push for promotion

Alvechurch FC gathers support for its crucial home games this month.

Village Book Review: Bayly’s War

Barnt Green author Steve Dunn has, for his sixth book on WW1 naval history, chosen to concentrate on a specific theatre of the war and the somewhat divisive figure at its centre.

Spanish lessons for AFC

Alvechurch FC links up with Real Madrid to give young players a world-class opportunity.

Much colder than normal

Alvechurch amateur weatherman Phil Thomas records the changes.

Visual activity centre

Amateur astronomer Brian Watkiss peers into the Village night sky.

Making a woodland

Hannah Genders suggests ways to create a wild garden area.

The tree of balance

Mary Green continues her series on trees in the Celtic calendar.

Cleaning you can trust

In the November issue of The Village, we announced the launch of our Alvechurch-based residential cleaning business, My Clean Home.

Inspirational interiors

If you’re seeking a stylish new look for your home, an interior design agency specialising in luxury residential projects has all the expertise you need.

Balti night brings in cash

Spice Valley Balti in Bromsgrove raised more than £500 for the Stroke Association with a charity night of food and fun.

Bespoke care in your own home

An independent home care agency founded just over a year ago has proved so successful that it has had to take on extra staff as well as moving into a purpose-built office.

Ready for ISA and pensions season

Investors should start to turn their focus to the end of the tax year on April 5, writes Martin Pryor.

The Village Archive: 10 years ago. . .

A look back at what was happening around here in March 2008.

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