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In Full . . .

THE VILLAGE VIEW

Posted on October 03 2016 at 11:52:30

It’s been a busy start to autumn, with a cornucopia of events taking place at villages across the area, as you will see in the pages of this magazine.

The Barnt Green Weekender, a kind of mini music and film festival staged in spectacular tents at Barnt Green Sports Club, drew all age groups over two days, while the inaugural Blackwell Music Festival was also a success, despite it being staged on a particularly wet Saturday.

At Rowney Green and at Tardebigge, people enjoyed more traditional village get-togethers at, respectively, the horticultural society’s annual show and the village fair and produce show.

These were just some of the ones we were able to get to and have space for. There were so many events going on during September that we would need five times our usual number of pages to fit in pictures from them all.

As seasoned observers and followers of village life, it looks to us as if there has been an increase in such village vitality over the past few years.

This is a relief after a number of years during which we feared people, over-burdened by stressful lives working to pay ridiculously high prices for places to live, were turning inwards and our villages might become sterile dormitories.

It is as if a new generation has picked up the mantle of creating the communities in which they and their families live and thrive.

It’s what living in these villages is all about, as is the willingness of people to devote their time to maintaining the structure of our villages and ensuring we don’t get sucked up by the hungry metropolis to our north.

That’s where Neighbourhood Plans come in, and again these are the products of work across generations as Village Design Statements from 15 years ago and Parish Plans from 10 inform and form the foundations of the latest attempt by central Government to give grassroots wishes some say in the planning process.

Alvechurch parish got going first with their Neighbourhood Plan and its progress will be watched keenly by those in Barnt Green and Blackwell, Lickey and Cofton Hackett, where Neighbourhood Plans are also being formulated.

We would urge all those who care about where they live to get involved and respond with how they’d like to see their village in the next 20 years.


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