Monday March 25 2019



Village News


Last-minute lorry stop

Bromsgrove District Council served a temporary stop notice on lorry activity at Marlbrook Tip – just one hour before the latest, long-awaited meeting in the tip saga was due to begin.

‘Promising’ path ideas

The latest developments on the rail crossing diversion in Blackwell look “promising and optimistic”, Lickey & Blackwell parish councillors heard.

Time to have your say on plan

A public consultation on the joint Lickey & Blackwell and Cofton Hackett Neighbourhood Development Plan will run until March 29.

Celebration time

Members of the Alvechurch Neighbourhood Plan steering group, past and present, toasted the successful public approval of the plan with a gathering at The Weighbridge pub.

Village’s ‘fallen angel’

Following complaints over the cutting down of the village Christmas tree in November, two further festive mishaps befell Barnt Green, councillors heard.

Dance donation

Members of Alvechurch Border Morris presented a cheque for £208 to Redditch Nightstop.

Hoping for your vote

Neil Harris, a village Conservative hopeful in May’s local elections, explains why he – and his party – should be given a chance . . .

Independents’ day?

With local election campaigning about to begin, independent hopefuls in Bromsgrove are pooling ideas and experience as they push to change the face of local government.

You really could not make it up

The latest chapter in the sorry saga of Marlbrook Tip sees laden lorries returning to the Green Belt beauty spot with full loads, yet the authorities charged with drawing it to a close appear to be nowhere near finding an ending and the story is beginning to repeat itself. We try to make sense of the latest plotlines . . .

Waes Hael to all

Muskets, Morris dancing and general merriment were the order of the day at the Alvechurch wassail.

Daisy’s story raises smiles

A budding author from Barnt Green has won a young writers’ competition with her short story about a case of mistaken identity.

Oakalls litter pick

The Oakalls & Parklands Community Events Association is to hold its Annual Litter Pick as part of the Great British Spring Clean.

Chance to see classic comedy

Alvechurch Dramatic Society present Noël Coward’s classic comedy Blithe Spirit as their spring production.

Bromsgrove boys win BAFTA for short film

Two former Bromsgrove school pupils have won a BAFTA for their short film.

All change

Out-going Barnt Green parish clerk Gill Lungley handed over the reins to her successor, Tracy Bodley.

Holes in Hewell Road

By the time you read this, Severn Trent should have finished digging “trial holes” in Hewell Road, Barnt Green, in preparation for replacing the water main in the summer holidays.

Speeding ‘not a problem’

After speed monitoring on Mearse Lane and Twatling Road, district councillor Kit Taylor told Lickey & Blackwell Parish Council that although residents have a perception that drivers are speeding, the average speeds recorded were “within tolerance levels” so Highways did not consider it an official problem.

No sign of fixed speed camera

Speed was also on the agenda for Alvechurch Parish Council, which heard that the A441 in Hopwood still does not meet the Safer Roads Partnership’s criteria for a fixed speed camera.

Precept to rise

Parish councillors in Alvechurch voted to increase the precept – the part of the council tax that goes to the parish – by five per cent after a heated debate.

Bouncing bollards

New “indestructible” bollards that bounce back into place if hit by a vehicle could be installed throughout Alvechurch thanks to county council cash.

Council ponders pond safety

Barnt Green parish councillors debated the potential risks of the balancing pond at the bottom of the Foxhills development.

Play equipment boost

A group of mums from Hopwood have received a grant of £10,000 from the National Lottery Community Fund.

Reuben meets Vinny!

Seven-year-old Reuben Mole, of Bromsgrove, was the latest winner of a Mini Vinny in our monthly competition.

Age no handicap for Jake

Seven-year-old Barnt Green resident Jake Jeff-Johnston was a big winner at Bromsgrove Golf Club’s annual junior awards.

Our fields are not easy pickings, say villagers

Villagers gave a resounding vote of approval to the Alvechurch Neighbourhood Plan, with 97 per cent voting in favour.

So vane

Here’s a rare close-up view of the weather vane that usually sits atop Alvechurch Village Hall.

Green graffiti protest

An environmental activist is at large in Lickey, daubing pavements, road signs and street furniture with the slogans “Save Our Green Belt” and “Save Our Fields”.

Lamp post poo bag initiative

Blackwell residents fed up with the scourge of dog mess on the pavements have taken matters into their own hands and installed homemade poo bag dispensers on lamp posts around the village.

Creative charity

Alvechurch’s Knit & Natter group raised £1,050 to split between three charities through sales of their knitted goods and a raffle with prizes donated by villagers.

Community clean-up

Young cricketers and their parents pitched in to help clean up Alvechurch Cricket Club after damage caused by a car fire outside the building.

Library ‘a special case’

The consultation into the future of libraries across Worcestershire has still failed to grasp the scale of the problem it faces in Alvechurch, say councillors.

Back at Burcot

Burcot Grange and The Lodge Care Home were delighted to welcome general manager Vicky Osborne back from maternity leave.

Sadness over squirrel death

This may be the last photo of the white squirrel that was often seen around Crown Meadow in Alvechurch.

Roll on Christmas!

It’s only just finished and already they’re talking about the next one . . . Christmas, that is.

Rogue parking bay

A rogue “parking bay” outside Alvechurch Village Hall is to be investigated.

No response from Network Rail

Network Rail had still not responded – or even acknowledged – correspondence since a high-level meeting about the future of the car park at Alvechurch rail station, district councillor Kate Van Der Plank told parish councillors.

Boost for Hall fund

The Cofton Village Hall Trust received a boost thanks to money raised by village restaurant Goa Goa.

The bright side of Brexit?

Villagers gathered in Alvechurch on New Year’s Day for the annual Mummers’ Play and Morris dancing.

Make some noise at the Alvechurch Wassail!

Aelfgythe Border Morris has again organised the Alvechurch Wassail, which takes place this year on Saturday February 2.

Walking and wassailing

A Wassail Walk from Millennium Park in Barnt Green to Fruitfields Orchard on the outskirts of the village attracted 70 walkers and wassailers.

Village Views


Lawton’s View

MARCH 2019



If there was a Top 10 of “You Couldn’t Make It Ups”, the Marlbrook Tip debacle would surely be a chart-topper.

Create hedges to attract birds

I write in response to the letter Where are the small birds? in your January magazine.

Be thankful for hardworking bin collectors

Further to a recent letter (Village Views, February 2019) I would like to thank all our hardworking bin collectors for their faithful and efficient service.

More graffiti from ‘Tanksy’

Following on from your item in the February issue (Green graffiti protest), here is some additional work (above) by the anonymous environmental artist.

Bonfires bring air pollution

This picture was taken on a Friday morning at 9am. All this talk about air pollution, yet as I write this bonfire has been burning for more than two hours and is still going.

Bench makes beautiful sight

I took the photo above while I was out on a run in Lickey Hills.

Lawton’s View




What a fine mess party politics has got us all into. After more than two years, the mist has lifted to reveal a Prime Minister more concerned with preventing her party being rent asunder than the future of the country she is supposed to be governing.

Libraries should be fully staffed

I attended the public consultation at Rubery Library for the proposed changes to our local libraries and would like to make the following points.

When will the tip farrago end?

So the saga of the Marlbrook Tip continues. Recent inspections have shown that the landowner has been importing hardcore to the site.

Tipping point

On December 13 at 15.20 (3.20pm in old money), as I turned on to Rose Hill, a line of us followed a heavily-overloaded tipper truck up the hill.

The small birds are here!

Richard Page wants to know where the small birds are (Village Views, January 2019).

Thanks for bin collection

We would personally like to thank Councillor Charles Hotham for arranging to get the grey bins collected after we had missed out before Christmas.

Get your facts straight

On Saturday January 5, I received a note through my letter box asking if I could clear an amount of dog waste from the waste ground at the side of my flat.

Parked cars are a real danger

I recently contacted Worcestershire County Council’s Highways department about the parking situation on Fiery Hill Road.

Oh, sugar!

It’s good to have a monthly recipe, but could you and your recipe writer please not describe something as a “healthy treat” and “full of good ingredients” when it is in fact full of sugar?

Lawton’s View


Lawton Jan 2019


With all the talk of referendums (and despite the protestations, it doesn’t look like there’s any sensible way out of the Brexit Mayhem without another one) some villagers have been left scratching their heads as polling cards for a totally different referendum, on January 10, drop through their doors.

Green belt ‘gifted’ to developers

Thank you for alerting me to the District Plan consultation timeframe recently – which, like yourselves, I found to be a challenging read.

Tree trouble

When I was on Barnt Green Parish Council I found out they were paying £200 each year for supply and installation of a Christmas tree.


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Village Features

On course for bright future

Kings Norton Golf Club is bucking the trend of golf clubs cutting budgets by investing more than £600,000 in its course.

Reinvention in a box

Leila Loves Design is an interior design business based in Barnt Green.

AFC unbeaten in seven

Alvechurch leap back into play-off places with an unbeaten run.

Keeping my cool in TV kitchen

Alvechurch villager Mike Rossiter-Eaglesfield tells how cooking has helped him to handle his anxiety so much that he’s currently starring on TV’s MasterChef.

The Village Archive… 10 years ago

A look back at what was happening around here in March 2009.

The Village Archive. . . 20 years ago

A look back at what was happening around here in March 1999.

Tricky politics of trade war

This is Steve Dunn’s seventh naval history book, and with two more already in progress, you’d think there wouldn’t be many aspects of the Royal Navy’s WWI exploits the Barnt Green author hadn’t already covered.

Tales of mice and men

Four very different books form the latest offering from Rednal author Jack Walsh.

Happy birthday to tax-free savings

Celebrate 20 years of the ISA by making an investment, writes Martin Pryor.

Mild end to the winter

Alvechurch amateur weatherman Phil Thomas records the changes.

Here’s a health to the bird in the bush

Mary Green praises ‘good’ hedges and the birds that use them.

All things green and growing

Hannah Genders looks forward to another busy Malvern Show.

Beyond traditional lace

Bromsgrove artist Richard McIlwraith encourages readers to visit a contemporary lace exhibition at Artrix.

Treats for Mum

Keen baker Jen Morris, of Rowney Green, suggests pretty ‘daisy cakes’ as a simple gift for Mothering Sunday.

The food of love

Keen baker Jen Morris, of Rowney Green, creates a chocolatey treat for the most romantic day of the year . . . (contains sugar!)

Chance to look after a classic

An unusual project is enabling younger drivers to truly experience ‘classic’ motoring.

The Village Archive. . . 10 Years Ago

A look back at what was happening around here in February 2009.

The Village Archive. . . 20 Years Ago

A look back at what was happening around here in February 1999.

‘Moderate February’ live seminar

If you are doing Dry January then keep going, writes Julie Ward, alcohol specialist and managing director of ACT Alcohol Ltd.

Make plans now to fund a child’s future

Financing a child’s path to adulthood is a long-term commitment, writes Martin Pryor.

Could winter still bite?

Alvechurch amateur weatherman Phil Thomas records the changes.

Plant wisdom

Mary Green looks at the hidden powers of our plants.

Don’t miss a garden treat

Dave Morgan looks ahead to garden openings across the Village area.

Imagination & illustration

Bromsgrove artist Richard McIlwraith meets local poet and illustrator Penny Turner.

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