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Have The Meadows been short-changed?

Posted on March 22 2007 at 2:35:39

On the subject of wanting to reduce the bogginess of The Meadows playing fields in Alvechurch, I would like to offer the following information gleaned during my tenure as clerk to the Wiggin Memorial/Alvechurch Playing Field Trust that looks after the Meadows. 

The Meadows have long been revered by some as an example of the now fast-disappearing Worcestershire meadowland, hosting an extensive selection of wildlife.

It has always been a juggling act to maintain the fields in accordance with the Trust’s prime directive – the fields were left for the use of the children of Alvechurch – to ensure the beauty of the site is not lost whilst maintaining its accessibility.

However, some years ago we asked for advice from a variety of sources relating to the wish to drain the central playing field to allow for year-round use for football, cricket etc.

The response was that, as the site lies between a hill and a river, the field is clearly likely to become water-logged as rain-water will run down the hill towards the river. It was believed at the time that not much could be done to stop the forces of nature.

It may now be a different story due to the new schools’ building work and pond creation that is ongoing in the adjacent fields lying in the same flood plain.

As yet the long-term effect is unknown, but could it possibly mean that The Meadows will dry out naturally? 

As for the “106” planning gain payment arising from the building work next to the Mill, the original document clearly implied the benefit of £50,000 was to be solely for the area of community space off Meadow Lane.

As this area is held in charitable trust then I do wonder why it is the Bromsgrove District Council that is deciding how the money is to be spent rather than the Trust, and why the amount has to be shared with other recreation areas.

Have The Meadows been short-changed? 

Gill Lungley, Hopwood


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