Monday August 19 2019



Village News


Hills parking poser

Birmingham City Council’s plan to introduce car parking charges at Lickey Hills Country Park has reached the informal consultation stage, sparking debate at village parish council meetings.

Hanging on an answer

The traditional red telephone box in the centre of Alvechurch could become a “church library” and noticeboard.

Clean green scheme

Kate Van Der Plank, district councillor for Alvechurch Village ward, has launched a campaign to make the area cleaner and greener.

County ‘should be recycling more’

Worcestershire County Council, which recently rejected a motion to declare a climate change emergency, is not doing enough on recycling, Coun Peter McDonald told Barnt Green parish councillors.

Man versus mountains

Alvechurch resident Tim Roberts is back home after completing the arduous Tour Divide and raising £2,000 for Cancer Research.

Play equipment unveiled

New play equipment inspired by the “Hopwood Mums” campaign was to be declared open at a small ceremony before the Alvechurch Parish Council meeting on July 22.

Fallen trees pledge

Beoley Parish Council has vowed to tackle fallen trees in the parish following severe weather in recent months.

Hills and horses

The fourth annual Bilberry Wake on the Lickey Hills attracted plenty of children and families, who had fun making hobby horses and racing them around an obstacle course.

Cardinal to become saint

Cardinal John Henry Newman, the 19th-century theologian who founded Birmingham Oratory and is buried in the Lickeys, will be canonised in the Vatican on October 13.

Day of live music

Blackwell Music Festival takes place on Saturday September 7 in the grounds of Hunter’s Hill School.

Flower patch funding

Barnt Green Parish Council has been quoted £2,000 to install a low rail around the wildflower patch on Hewell Road.

Birthday bash

Marie Storey, a resident at The Lawns care home in Alvechurch, celebrated her 101st birthday.

Incredible start for veg project

The Incredible Edible project in Alvechurch, which sees volunteers planting produce in the village for all to share, has enjoyed a very successful first year.

Burcot homes plan rejected

Plans to demolish Burcot Garden Centre and build 11 new homes on the site have been rejected.

Caravan site approved

A site for three caravans has been approved in Hopwood, at the end of Ash Lane near the motorway services.

Tennis parking plan

Tennis courts at Rowney Green could be given over to parking during the football season under an idea being considered by Alvechurch Parish Council.

Libby meets Vinny

Seven-year-old Libby Thurgood, of Alvechurch, was the latest winner of a Mini Vinny in our monthly competition.

50 years of village life

Alvechurch Village Society (AVS) celebrated its 50th anniversary by inviting residents to a party at the village hall.

Flower power!

This year’s Blackwell Summer Festival had a ‘Flower Power’ theme, which saw residents fully embracing the spirit of the event with a variety of bright costumes and inventive props.

Yellow lines plan

Beoley parish councillors are campaigning for double yellow lines on Holt Hill.

Gardeners galore in Withybed

The biannual Withybed Open Gardens event saw eight gardens in the hamlet open to the public as part of the National Gardens Scheme (NGS).

Golf club’s charity day

Kings Norton Golf Club raised £4,343 for the Parkinson’s Foundation by holding a golf day.

Special visitor at tag rugby festival

Youngsters from 13 local schools took part in a tag rugby festival at Kings Norton Rugby Club’s Hopwood Park ground.

Duck house disappears

Sarah Rees reports from the Oakalls and Parklands.

New hall cash plea

Trustees of the new Cofton Village Hall have made an urgent appeal for more funds, to enable the building to open this summer after a “disappointing” response so far from residents.

Council counts cost of vandalism

arish councillors are looking at ways to deter vandalism after a seat on the new play equipment at The Meadows, Alvechurch, was destroyed and stone seats were marked with paint.

Stations still waiting

Barnt Green Parish Council is hoping that long-promised lifts at the railway station may at last be a step nearer.

Village braces for parking woe

Barnt Green is braced for “parking mayhem” when Hewell Road closes for the water main to be replaced, although Severn Trent assured parish councillors that disruption would be kept to a minimum.

Platinum party time

Husband and wife residents at Burcot Grange care home celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary with a traditional afternoon tea.

Right-of-way battle looms

Barnt Green parish councillors have vowed to keep up the pressure on CALA Homes to give all residents access to a public right of way.

Parish ‘quirks’ prompt review

Lickey & Blackwell Parish Council discussed the idea of adding a new area to the parish after an enquiry from a resident of Staple Flat.

Woody inspires charity

A bereaved father has launched a new children’s charity in memory of his baby son.

Lights donation

Lickey Community Group hopes to donate funds for lighting to illuminate the defibrillator at the Trinity Centre.

Fly-tipping increases

Cases of fly-tipping in Alvechurch worsened during May, including a three-piece suite and sheets of asbestos, district councillor Kate Van Der Plank told parish councillors.

Car boot concern

The return of a car boot sale by Cobb’s Barn roundabout, Bordesley, has “caused a lot of anxiety”, district councillor Annette English told Alvechurch parish councillors.

Tribute to chairman

New Alvechurch parish chairman Marc Worrall paid tribute to his predecessor as he took charge.

Car park decision

Alvechurch Parish Council will decide this month whether to continue to pay for surface water run-off at Alvechurch Social Club car park.

Rating improves

The Deedar restaurant in Barnt Green has improved its food hygiene rating from one star to four stars (Good), after an inspection in April.

Garden fun at Lawns

The Lawns care home in Alvechurch had a bit of luck with the weather for its recent Garden Party, with the rain stopping just before the event began.

Finnley meets Vinny

Eight-year-old Finnley Siembab, of Alvechurch, was the latest winner of a Mini Vinny in our monthly competition.

Village Views


Lawton’s View

JUNE 2019

Lawton's View June 2019


The independent wave continued to wash over the Village area in the Bromsgrove Council elections. The whole tract from Redditch, through Beoley, Portway, Alvechurch, Rowney Green, Barnt Green and Hopwood to the Birmingham border is now represented by independent councillors.

Church could chip in for the hall

As a resident of Cofton Hackett, I was interested to read the article in last month’s Village regarding the apparent poor response from Cofton residents to appeals for funds to fit out the new village/parish hall.

Grubs to blame for wrecked lawn

Having read Keith Hughes’s letter “That’s the badger” (July 2019), I think I can shed some light on why this has happened.

Chemical solution

Keith’s problem is a chafer grub. They are a larvae that live a couple of inches under the turf and live off the roots; then the rooks, crows, magpies, foxes and badgers feed off the grub which is very high in protein.

Thanks to supporters

Alvechurch Football Club would like to thank the landlords and regulars at the Swan and Crown pubs who continue to support J’s football cards, which has been an amazing support for the youth section over the years.

Time to find a new planet!

With regard to Mr John B Holland’s response (July 2019) to my ongoing concerns about bonfires and their impact on air quality, we will just have to agree to disagree!

How I revitalised my garden

Readers may recall my letter in January 2019 asking Where are the small birds?  I have only been in Alvechurch a short while, but I have turned my garden into a natural habitat to attract wildlife.

Lawton’s View




This month we’ll try to observe the summer convention and keep the bees in our bonnet under control – there will be plenty enough to worry and complain about once September comes.

Bonfire gripe misses the point

While refuelling my father’s bonfire on one of the many Sunday mornings during the 1940s, little did I realise that one day my actions may cause consternation to someone in the 21st century.

Tune in to Radio Cofton

Reservoir Road has two new resident DJs on Cofton Hackett Radio (CHR). Myself (aka Dogtags) and my next door neighbour, Will, have our own shows at 8pm on Tuesday and Friday respectively.

Baskets brighten up village

It was good to see Nick Houghton and his two helpers from Where Next? Redditch planting out containers and putting up the hanging baskets in Barnt Green.

Memories of a great friend

I would like to say a few words about a great friend who lived in Alvechurch for many years.

That’s the badger!

Having lived on the Lickey Hills for 20 years and the land having been in the family for 80 years, we have never been plagued by badgers – until this year.


Even though it’s summer and we usually give the bees in our bonnet a rest for a month or two, there’s one that just keeps buzzing around our head . . . and it is all to do with that fear we have of a looming Barntchurch.

Lawton’s View

JULY 2019


We must have clean air debate

I would like to respond to John Impey and John Holland, with regard to my published concerns about bonfires in your magazine.

Let’s consign bonfires to past

I am amazed at the comment by John Holland last month (Bonfires haven’t killed me yet. . .)

Graffiti culprit must come clean

Despite the best endeavours of Lickey & Blackwell Parish Council, graffiti remains steadfast on street furniture including road signs, Virgin boxes and our weather station on Rose Hill and the Old Birmingham Road, Lickey.

Lure of the Lickeys

An original bluebell poem offering for the “smile corner” of your lovely mag.


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Village Features

In-between gardening

Hannah Genders advises on garden jobs to tackle in August. 

Giants of the sky

Amateur astronomer Brian Watkiss peers into the Village night sky.

Colour and vibrancy

Village art exhibition features local scenes plus portraits and seascapes in oils.

Patient care is our top priority

Dental practice in Barnt Green combines experience, excellence and expertise to ensure patients come first.

How much is enough?

Martin Pryor explains why it’s worth considering a bigger contribution to your pension.

Summer improves

Alvechurch amateur weatherman Phil Thomas records the changes.

Ready for challenge

Alvechurch FC warm up for new season with a trio of friendlies.

Reinvent your home

Summer is here and what better time to freshen up your home with Leila Loves Design?

Heart of stone

Mary Green explores an island with a thriving ecosystem.

The Village Archive. . . 20 years ago

A look back at what was happening around here in July/August 1999.

The Village Archive. . . 10 years ago

A look back at what was happening around here in July/August 2009.

Driving in new direction

A professional driver based in Alvechurch has used his years of experience to found a new luxury transport company.

Garden triumph for Dan

A village garden designer has won a prestigious award for the show garden he built at BBC Gardeners’ World Live.

All about Alfredo’s

A friendly welcome and a relaxing experience awaits at Alfredo’s, the traditional barbershop in the centre of Barnt Green.

Building assets with infrastructure funds

Martin Pryor advises on the best way to invest in assets such as utilities and transport.

So-called summer!

Alvechurch amateur weatherman Phil Thomas records the changes.

New faces at ’Church

Alvechurch FC appoints new manager and signs extra players.

Earth and water

Mary Green explains why ‘the answer lies in the soil’.

Future of growing

Hannah Genders visits two Chelsea show gardens with an educational message.

Aiming for the Moon

Dave Morgan looks ahead to the annual art exhibition in Alvechurch.

Easy no-bake cheesecake

Keen baker Jen Morris, of Rowney Green, makes a fruity treat.

Spot the landing site

Amateur astronomer Brian Watkiss peers into the Village night sky.

Town festival brings culture to everyone

Now in its 59th year, the Bromsgrove Festival offers its usual wide-ranging programme of events for all.

Strawberry dream

Keen baker Jen Morris, of Rowney Green, makes a summery gateau.

Village What's On