Would you be interested in helping to improve the security of your neighbourhood?

Of recent years there has been much concern locally (and nationally, for that matter) about decreasing police presence in our communities and ongoing crime like antisocial behaviour, vehicle thefts and burglaries.

Image from West Midlands Police.

Very often I have heard residents express the view that they’d like to be able to protect their communities better – well, the chance to do that is coming to Brownhills soon if enough people show an interest. Street Watch schemes have already have been trialled in Aldridge and several areas of Walsall are hoping to, or are in the process of starting their own with the full backing and support of West Midlands Police.

Street Watch involves residents banding together under a lead co-ordinator to patrol their streets – for a minimum of  two hours per month – with the support of local police.

I’ll let  Engagement and Consultation Officer Kevin Pitt from West Midlands Police explain:

Brownhills Street Watch

Do you live in Brownhills? Are you passionate about protecting your community?

If you are prepared to volunteer your time for a minimum of 2 hours a month to patrol around your local area then you may be interested in volunteering to join Brownhills Street 8.

We need a minimum of 10 people to volunteer, including someone who is willing to be a lead co-ordinator.

If you are interested, please contact Kevin Pitt – k.pitt@west-midlands.pnn.police.uk to register your interest.

For more information, please click on this link here and read the attached PDF document.link.

Many thanks…
Kevin Pitt
Engagement and Consultation Officer

This is one step on from the generally successful neighbourhood watch schemes, and represents citizens taking an active role in patrolling their streets. Whilst I can see some potential issues, if managed well (as I’m sure this will be) it can only be a good thing.

If you’re interested please do contact Kevin Pitt via email on the link above, and don’t forget to let me know how you get on.

 

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There’s a great autism support group meeting in Brownhills today and every Tuesday!

Just a heads up to let folk know that there’s a popular and regular autism support group meeting in Brownhills every Tuesday lunchtime from 1:30-2:30pm at the Smithy’s Forge pub, Lichfield Road, Brownhills, just off the Miner Island.

For parents, carers, etc. of children and adults with autism.

Weekly support group every Tuesday at the Smithys Forge, Brownhills 1:30-2:30 🌈

The group has been running for a few months now and is growing in popularity – so why not pop along to see what it’s all about?

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Exploring the Boundary…

This is the best steam/vintage event I’ve ever been to.

If you’re a regular reader of the blog, you’ll know I adore steam engines and British Summertime events. In short, you’ll find me anywhere where there’s the smell of coal smoke on a sunny day, where I can stand with an ice cream or brew, marvelling over and admiring or chatting about a variety of mechanical geekery from times past.

Yesterday (Saturday 22nd June 2019) I found the best event I’ve been to for such stuff, right on the Derbyshire-Leicestershire border – Ashby Steam, this year continuing in it’s new home at Boundary, not far out of Swadlincote.

At times, it was like invasion of the tractors. Never seen so many.

I rode out early and the three hour ride was well worth it – as was the £5 entry fee. It reminded me of the also excellent Barton Gate steam fair, but seemed bigger with a busier atmosphere.

There were steam engines of course – of every variety: traction, showmans, road rollers, lorries and miniatures. There were stationary engines for the diesel strokers and petrolheads. Vintage and classic motorbikes, cars and one of the largest displays of tractors I’ve ever seen in my life.

But not just that: a very good range of food, a beer tent, fairground rides, a busy arena, models, tool and ephemera stalls, even a remote controlled tractor demo (I’m not kidding) – and friendly alpacas too.

Scam-Hazel Farm where the event is held is hone to over 160 alpacas, like Teacup here.

The highlight for me was all the vehicles pulling into line to parade out – Sadly I couldn’t stay for the actual parade, but will hopefully be there for it next year. At 4pm, all whistles were blown in unison. By that time I was on my way to Staunton Harold and could hear the beautiful cacophony of it.

But of course, what made this friendly show so great was the British weather which was sunny and hot, and the range of characters and their dogs. I’ve always adored such events for people watching and it was a cracker for that.

I shall definitely be back and I suggest you check it out next year, too. You can check out the Ashby Steam website here, and I note Barton Gate is this year on the weekend of the 20th and 21st July 2019. If you’ve not been to a steam rally before that one’s a real cracker too.

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Fancy finding out more about local wildlife? You can, this afternoon!

I note that since it’s a decent day it would be an excellent chance to nip up to Stubbers Green with the kids, grandkids of even just by yourself and chat to the Swan Patrol.

The Patrol are there right now – this and every Sunday from 1-3pm and have bird books, binoculars and a wealth of knowledge to share – so why not join them? There’s so much more local wildlife than people think!

The reserve is by the pools on Stubbers Green Road, between Aldridge and Shelfield.

Ann Lawrence of the Swan Patrol said:

Do you want to know more about nature and wildlife?

Stubbers Green Nature Reserve Aldridge
Swan Patrol every Sunday 1-3pm

Lollipops and stickers for children that bring good healthy bird foods. Sweet corn, lettuce, porridge oats, branflakes, cornflakes, vegetable peelings, bird seed.

We have binoculars and bird books available to use.


Donations welcome

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Did you know Bill Poxon from Aldridge? He’d love to get back in touch!

Jessie Road in Aldridge is a large community – there must be plenty of Bill’s mates still about. Image from Apple Maps.

I’ve had a very interesting enquiry from reader Rebecca Elizabeth who’s trying to trace some of her father’s old friends: The old fella is nearing 60 now and he’d love to get in touch with his old mates again.

Rebecca Elizabeth wrote:

Hello Bob

I’m trying to do a good deed – I’m trying to trace my dad’s old friends for him.

My Dad is Willian (Bill) Poxon who  lived in Jessie Road, Aldridge in the 70s and attended Aldridge High School and left in 1978.

He had friends in the Jessie Road area, but also some that drank in the Railway Tavern in Brownhills for years but hasn’t been able to find any of his friends from there either.

Two of his friends were called Steven Williams and Julia Roberts and they left school with him in 1978.Searches on Facebook have drawn a blank.

I hope this helps and thank you so much
Rebecca Elizabeth

Thanks to Rebecca for such a lovely, thoughtful enquiry – let’s see what we can do.

If you can help, please do. You can contact Rebecca directly via Facebook by clicking here, or you can comment on this post or mail me: BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com, or hit me up on social media wherever you follow me.

Cheers everyone.

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There’s a great talent this afternoon in Brownhills!

Friend of the blog Chris Booth has been in touch to let me know about a rather nice Coffee Concert that’s due to take place this afternoon (Saturday 22nd June 2019) at the Silver Street Methodist Church in Brownhills, featuring the talented pianist Jean Martyn.

There’s coffee and cake afterwards, so what’s not to love? It kicks off at 2:30pm

Why not join us for 45 mins of music from Britain’s Got Talent Finalist & International Concert Pianist & Organist Jean Martyn?
Followed by Coffee & Cake
Retiring Collection for Church Funds

Posted in Brownhills stuff, Churches, Clayhanger stuff, Events, Fun stuff to see and do, Local media, Local music, News, Reader enquiries, Shared media, Social Media, Spotted whilst browsing the web, Walsall community, Walsall Wood stuff | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Active Games Club for kids at Brownhills Community Centre this morning!

This Saturday 22nd June 2019 if you’ve got older kids why not try the PEPA Active Sports Club at Brownhills Community Centre from 10am-11am?

It’s suitable for kids from 6-11 years old and there’s all manner of fun stuff going on – Dodgeball, Archery, Nerf Wars – just £3 per week per kid.

See you there?

🌟 Saturday 22nd June 🌟
🌟 Brownhills Community Centre and The Lamp 🌟
🌟 £3 per session 🌟
🌟 Bring a friend and get the next session free 🌟
🌟 6 – 11 year olds 🌟
🌟 Come and have a go on our smoothie bike🚲 🌟
🌟10 am – 11am 🌟

💫Keeping Kids Active 💫

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Why not Stay and Play – at Brownhills Community Centre this morning

If you’ve a child or children under 4 years of age, there is a great Stay and Play session running at Brownhills Community Centre in the heart of Brownhills this Saturday morning 22nd June 2019 from 10-11:30am.

It costs just two quid per kid and includes fruit and a drink, so it’s great value and it’s run by those wonderful people at the Little Green Dragons Nursery, who are resident at the centre and are fully qualified nursery teachers.

There are games and toys and all manner of fun for the weans – and you get a break to boot.

Saturday 22nd June 2019

SOMEWHERE OVER THE RAINBOW 🌈

Our messy tray will be overflowing with hundreds of rainbow drops! We will be exploring different shapes,colours,tastes and textures whilst developing our maths skills without even knowing😏 with filling and emptying-categorising colours and counting through your play 1️⃣2️⃣3️⃣

Our creative table will be sunflowers 🌻 with lots of gluing and sticking 

Sandtray will be open and accessible as it is every week 👍🏼

Along with all our other areas of play within the nursery setting:

• home corner
• construction
• small world
• maths area
• cosy book/music area
• baby sensory area

See you all Saturday…

Fingers crossed the sun has her hat on ☀️☀️☀️we will be outdoors also which is loved by all every single week 🌈🌈🌈

10.00am-11.30am
£2 per child
Snack included

Feel free to invite your friends with children aged 0-4 years and share our events.

This group is held at Little Green Dragons Day Nursery every Saturday morning.2

The Community Centre is what my generation would know as ‘The Annexe’ – the old Central Boy’s School, now a bustling community resource. To find out more,  you can pop in or call them on 01543 452119.

The Community Association have lots of stuff going on, and loads of great facilities, right in the heart of Brownhills. I love what they’re about and all the great things they’re doing.

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New Hall Mill is open again this Sunday

P1040438

New Hall Mill is a splendid place, restored and run by wonderfully dedicated volunteers.

Theres a lovely thing to visit locally this Sunday (23rd June 2019), that’s close by, free and absolutely fascinating…

New Hall Mill is open again on Sunday for the third open day of 2019. I can heartily recommend the place – it’s fascinating and I had a great time there on 2015 Spring Bank Holiday Monday – not enough people know about this wonderful building.

There’s also an appeal ongoing for people who may be interested to join the friends of New Hall Mill and help in all sorts of ways – the team need all kinds of expertise from guides to engineering types who may have time to spare. See further down this post for details.

The open day is free to enter too (although donations are welcomed).

The Friends of Newhall Mill said:

Bob

The Friends of New Hall Mill will be opening the water mill to the public on Sunday 23rd June. Come along and see flour being produced from wheat in the traditional way, have a go on a hand operated quern as still used in parts of the world today. Visit the gift shop, be entertained with Live music, see the many side stalls in the grounds and experience lovely walks alongside the streams and through the meadows.

There is an exhibition room and small tearoom selling cakes and beverages along with a garden shop where produce may be purchased from the millers garden. Don’t forget to visit Auntie Wainwrights to find that bargain that you always wanted.

For your entertainment, we have The Lichfield Lighthouse Company performing 20 min sessions in the mill yard at 12:30pm, 1:20pm and 1:55pm.

There will be a guided walk at approx 2.00 pm around the mill and the grounds.

In the meadows and grounds; we have Displays & Demonstrations  by –

  • Bournville Bread Basket
  • Maidens Fayre Jams
  • Sutton Chess Club
  • The Turner Model Collection
  • Charles & Diana display
  • “A Childhood remembered” display
  • Vintage Tins display
  • Model Fairground
  • British Woodcarvers Association
  • Birmingham & The Black Country Wildlife Trust
  • Fentham Cottage Products
  • Sutton Coldfield Civic Society
  • Paper Flower Making
  • Vintage Bicycles display

P1040417

I totally geeked out over this wonderful place.

Entry to the site and Parking is free, donations are always welcome in order that we raise funds to maintain the buildings for all to see in the future.

Please note that we open at 10:00 and close at 4:00pm with last entry onto site being at 3:45pm.

Only disability assistance dogs are allowed on site.

Access to the mill is off Wylde Green Road, Sutton Coldfield, B76 1QU some 200 metres from National Cycle Route 534.

Having seen what we do, could you be able to assist? In order to continue holding these events, we need additional membership to help out on Open Days and Work Days. It is not all about Flour production – We have ageing machinery to maintain, tea room staff are always welcome, there are openings in all areas. Have a chat with a volunteer on Open day.

Hoping to see you there

Alan Dawson – A friend of New Hall Mill.

More details can be found on their website – www.newhallmill.org.uk or their Facebook page here.

This is certainly a project worth visiting and supporting – please do pop along if you can.  You can check out a gallery of my photos taken there last year below. I had a great time.

Posted in cycling, Environment, Followups, Fun stuff to see and do, Interesting photos, Local Blogs, Local History, Local media, News, Reader enquiries, Shared media, Social Media, Spotted whilst browsing the web, Walsall community, Walsall Council | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bogus workmen still preying on local elderly: Please warn your friends!

I note with concern that the bogus workmen claiming to be working on fencing for neighbours is still in operation and targeting the local elderly folk.

Picture from Police Scotland.

Old friend of the blog Mike Sarsfield has written to inform me that a local friend of his has been (thankfully, unsuccessfully) targeted by a scumbag plying this scam: Earlier this year an elderly Brownhills couple were also targeted by a man claiming to have done fencing work at an adjoining property which they were in some way liable for.

The story is of course, utterly false and it’s a con.

Mike Sarsfield wrote:

Hi Bob,

Mike Sarsfield from Swansea reporting in. Please can you publish the following:

I had a phone call from an elderly lady relative of mine who still lives in the Brownhills area. She was worried, because she had had a visit from a man in a van, who had her name and address and he was trying to have her to pay money for work he had done on a neighbours fence [shared] on her side.

She challenged him and threatened him with the police. He took off fast. She has reported it to the Police, who will follow up.

A suggestion to all ~ be on our guard and report anything that looks out of the ordinary, to your neighbourhood watch and the Police.

I am glad to report that she is no worse the wear for this encounter.

Many thanks Bob, keep the excellent site going, and I hope to be in contact again soon,

Mike Sarsfield

Please tell your relatives and neighbours about this scam, and impress upon them how important it is not to be menaced into giving money for services  at the door, no matter how plausible the people demanding cash are. Genuine companies will always contact you by other means.

Explain that no official body will turn up unannounced demanding money for services like gardening, drain cleaning, fence repairs, tree pruning etc., and that if they are at all unsure of any caller, to close the door and contact the police.

Scumbags preying on the elderly and vulnerable are lower than a snake’s knees.

Please,  if you have any further information relating to this matter, or if you’ve witnessed something suspicious, please contact West Midlands Police by dialling 101 (999 in an emergency, obviously) or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

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In memoriam, Gwendoline Bird

Gwendoline’s funeral will be at St. Johns, Walsall Wood. Imagery from Apple Maps.

Rob Bird has been in touch to let readers know of the sad passing of his mother, Gwendoline Bird (nee Phillips) who passed away on the 12th June 2019, and to invite all who knew her to her funeral at Walsall Wood on Wednesday, 3rd July 2019.

My and our sincerest condolences – and I speak for all of the blog community here – go out to Rob, Alison and all who knew and loved Gwendoline.

Gwendoline Bird (nee Phillips)

17th May 1929 – 12th June 2019

Widow of Bob Bird, Mother of Alison and Robert

Much loved Mother-in-Law, Nanny and Great Nan

Born in Walsall Wood and lately living at Knaves Court in Brownhills

Passed away at Walsall Manor Hospital

Funeral at St. John’s Church, Walsall Wood

Wednesday 3rd July 2019 2pm

 

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Help with the June 2019 Brownhills Summer Clean this Sunday!

There’s a community litter pick event taking place in Brownhills this weekend on Sunday afternoon, 23rd June 2019 from 2 until 4pm – and all are welcome. All kit will be provided!

Every bit helps! Image from the event Facebook page.

This is being run by local lady Kathryn Grace and a band of volunteers for the benefit of the community, so it’ll be a worthwhile event to get involved with and help improve the local environment.

Kathryn said:

It’s almost time for a summer spruce up! So take a hold of your community spirit and join us for a litter pick around the beautiful canal, Brownhills High Street and surrounding area.

Add your name to the list. Do come and meet your neighbours, bring along your children and let’s ‘Make Brownhills Great Again’.

Clean & Green will provide pickers, vests, gloves and bags.

Meet at ther lower car park near the Green Bridge.

You can check out the event’s Facebook page here.

Previous local litter pick events have been a huge success, so let’s see if we can make this one even better!

Recent litter picks have been a huge success and very popular.
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Soultime – Northern Soul and Motown Disco with DJ Leekie and pals this Friday evening!

The inimitable soul DJ Leekie has been in touch to let me know that he’s DJing his regular Soultime event at Pelsall Community Centre next Friday evening, 21st June 2019 at Pelsall Community Centre, where he and a number of great soul pals will be fulfilling all your Northern Soul and Motown requirements.

I’ve yet to meet anyone who doesn’t like a bit of classic soul and Leekie is a great DJ for a wonderful night. A two-room event, it also features Stevie T, Vernon Smith, Pat Ward, Rob Edgar, Alan Wigley and of course, Leekie!

It’s just £5 a head (payable o the door) and kicks off at 8pm and runs until Midnight. What’s not to love?

That’s Pelsall Community Centre, Station Rd, Pelsall, Walsall WS3 4BQ. See you there?

Posted in Brownhills stuff, Events, Features, Fun stuff to see and do, Local media, Reader enquiries, Shared media, Social Media, Spotted whilst browsing the web, Walsall community, Walsall Wood stuff | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Irene the Swan Lady on the telly!

I was really charmed and pleased to see Irene Hodges, the Chasewater Swan Lady, on Midlands Today yesterday evening (Monday, 17th June 2018) – you can see the item in the clip above. Turn your sound up.

Irene, you’ll remember, looks after and feeds the huge number of swans at Chasewater, as well as monitoring the flock and helping any in need of attention.

Irene alerted us to the black swan that visited Chasewater a few years ago.

Irene is concerned that since the water level has been low, there may not be enough natural food for the large number of birds living on the lake this winter, and for many winters now and in all weathers, Irene has selflessly looked after he adopted flock.

It’s a good time to repeat her appeal for help posted a couple of years ago, too.

Irene said:

Hi Bob

I do care so much for the swans as you know. But they have not had any natural food (pond weed or stone wort) for four years and bread really isn’t good but it keeps them from going hungry.

So we buy mixed chicken corn and in winter lay pellets.

It only grows in the shallow part of water. So recent works have caused a shortage.

Sans Brett helps me and a few others, but anyone else who can help is welcome.

Thank you for your time.

Irene

We all love the birds and if you can donate, or if you have surplus bird feed you don’t need, please comment here or mail me on BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com.

Cheers for your help. Irene and her husband Barrie are a wonderful couple who work hard to look after the wildlife out of their own pockets, so any help would be most welcome.

tumblr_mk56tiAUiH1qib2vgo7_1280

Irene and her husband are out in all weathers to feed their grateful charges.

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There’s a great autism support group meeting in Brownhills today and every Tuesday!

Just a heads up to let folk know that there’s a popular and regular autism support group meeting in Brownhills every Tuesday lunchtime from 1:30-2:30pm at the Smithy’s Forge pub, Lichfield Road, Brownhills, just off the Miner Island.

For parents, carers, etc. of children and adults with autism.

Weekly support group every Tuesday at the Smithys Forge, Brownhills 1:30-2:30 🌈

The group has been running for a few months now and is growing in popularity – so why not pop along to see what it’s all about?

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Are you going A5 Live in 2019?

Long term readers will remember the annual music and fun festival that’s taken place on the smallholding just off the A5 at Newtown, Brownhills – formerly called Cockfest (because it took place on a chicken farm), now renamed and revitalised as A5 Live.

This year the music, entertainment and fun returns, and takes place from Friday 2nd to Sunday 4th August 2019, and tickets are now on sale. It promises to be the biggest and best yet!

Tickets range in price from a fiver to just £25 for the whole weekend which is smashing value I think you’ll agree.

When I have details of bands playing and other attractions, I’ll post them here.

A5 Live – the summer festival on your doorstep.

An unforgettable crowd, fantastic live bands, the amazing Humbuckers Licensed Bar, plus fantastic food vendors.

This is the 3rd year of A5 Live and the bands will be announced soon, the charity is Dementia Awareness and Livewire are headlining Friday night and a Foo fighters Tribute are headlining Saturday night.

With an incredible line up for 2019, you won’t want to miss the biggest A5 Live yet – so get your tickets sorted by clicking here, and come join us from 2nd August!

You can get tickets from the A5 Live website here or by emailing A5Live@outlook.co.uk. You can check out the festival Facebook page here, too.

I wish everyone the best for this and it’s always good to see local music events.

Preparations are well underway – it’s a lovely spot too.

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Fancy seeing a beautiful English garden this afternoon?

With the weather improving there’s a lovely event this afternoon,  Sunday 16th June 2019 – Ann Astbury-Pemberton’s gorgeous open garden event in aid of the Alzheimer’s Society.

For a donation you get to see a stunning large garden with remarkable and beautiful flowers and shrubs, there’s a tombola, raffle, refreshments and plant sales, and of course the chance to experience something that’s quintessentially British.

It opened from 10:30am until late and all are welcome, so what’s not to love?

 

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Fancy finding out more about local wildlife? You can, this afternoon!

I note that since it’s a decent day it would be an excellent chance to nip up to Stubbers Green with the kids, grandkids of even just by yourself and chat to the Swan Patrol.

The Patrol are there right now – this and every Sunday from 1-3pm and have bird books, binoculars and a wealth of knowledge to share – so why not join them? There’s so much more local wildlife than people think!

The reserve is by the pools on Stubbers Green Road, between Aldridge and Shelfield.

Ann Lawrence of the Swan Patrol said:

Do you want to know more about nature and wildlife?

Stubbers Green Nature Reserve Aldridge
Swan Patrol every Sunday 1-3pm

Lollipops and stickers for children that bring good healthy bird foods. Sweet corn, lettuce, porridge oats, branflakes, cornflakes, vegetable peelings, bird seed.

We have binoculars and bird books available to use.


Donations welcome

Posted in News | 1 Comment

Experience the 1940s at Chasewater Railway this Sunday

I notice that this Sunday, 16th June 2019, there’s a rather fun looking Experience the 1940s event being staged at Chasewater Railway – just the thing to treat the old fella to on Fathers day.

The fair runs from 10am until 5pm at Brownhills West Station (Use the Chasewater main entrance from the A5 and Pool Road) and there will be entertainment from the Bluebird Belles and others, vintage ephemera stalls, food and drink. the noted tea rooms and of course the wonderful atmosphere provided by a working preserved steam railway.

To be clear, as I understand it the price is for train rides: The event at the station is free to enter as usual.

The organisers said:

Experience the 1940s at Chasewater Railway this Father’s day!

Music, entertainment, vintage vehicles, re-enactors and of course Train rides through the beautiful Chasewater Country Park. Fun for all the family!

Chasewater Railway is a wonderful attraction with regular passenger services at weekends and during school holidays, featuring two excellent cafes and a fascinating museum that chronicles not just railway history, but that of our area and industry.

The whole thing is staffed by helpful and friendly volunteers who are always ready to chat and talk about the railway and rolling stock.

At Brownhills west station there are also a lovely model railway, plus a couple of great vintage and collectible stalls. The railway itself has a shop selling books, rail models, toys and other merchandise.

You can check their website here – trains run this and every weekend from 11am to 4pm with the museum, cafes and stations open earlier.

Posted in Brownhills stuff, Chasewater, Events, Fun stuff to see and do, Interesting photos, Local media, Local music, News, Reader enquiries, Shared media, Shared memories, Social Media, Spotted whilst browsing the web, Walsall community | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Active Games Club for kids at Brownhills Community Centre this morning!

This Saturday 8th June 2019 if you’ve go older kids why not try the PEPA Active Sports Club at Brownhills Community Centre from 10am-11am?

It’s suitable for kids from 6-11 years old and there’s all manner of fun stuff going on – Dodgeball, Archery, Nerf Wars – just £3 per week per kid.

See you there?

🌟 Saturday 8th June 🌟
🌟 Brownhills Community Centre and The Lamp 🌟
🌟 £3 per session 🌟
🌟 Bring a friend and get the next session free 🌟
🌟 6 – 11 year olds 🌟
🌟 Come and have a go on our smoothie bike🚲 🌟
🌟10 am – 11am 🌟

💫Keeping Kids Active 💫

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Why not Stay and Play – at Brownhills Community Centre this morning

If you’ve a child or children under 4 years of age, there is a great Stay and Play session running at Brownhills Community Centre in the heart of Brownhills this Saturday morning 15th June 2019 from 10-11:30am.

It costs just two quid per kid and includes fruit and a drink, so it’s great value and it’s run by those wonderful people at the Little Green Dragons Nursery, who are resident at the centre and are fully qualified nursery teachers.

There are games and toys and all manner of fun for the weans – and you get a break to boot.

Saturday 15th June 2019

Playdough & Pasta tuff tray play🦠🦠🦠🦠 – We will be exploring different sizes, shapes and textures whilst creating your very unique pieces of art with Playdough and pasta
🧐🎨

Our creative table will be card making for the very special Father’s Day 

Sandtray will be open and accessible as it is every week 👍🏼

… along with all our other areas of play within the nursery setting :

• home corner
• construction
• small world
• maths area
• cosy book/music area
• baby sensory area

See you all Saturday ….

Fingers crossed the sun has her hat on ☀️☀️☀️we will be outdoors also which is loved by all every single week 🌈🌈🌈

10.00am-11.30am
£2 per child
Snack included
feel free to invite your friends with children aged 0-4 years and share our events

This group is held at Little Green Dragons Day Nursery every Saturday morning …

The Community Centre is what my generation would know as ‘The Annexe’ – the old Central Boy’s School, now a bustling community resource. To find out more,  you can pop in or call them on 01543 452119.

The Community Association have lots of stuff going on, and loads of great facilities, right in the heart of Brownhills. I love what they’re about and all the great things they’re doing.

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Help save Acorns Hospice – in Walsall this Saturday

Also, there’s this event going on at Walsall Tesco Saturday 15th June 2019 (Tomorrow at the time of posting) – all in aid of Acorns Hospicin Walsall, which as you’ll know by now is threatened with closure.

There will be nail painting, a cake sale, tombola and all kinds of fun.

Please do pop in and support the fundraisers – it’s such an important cause.

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Fancy seeing a beautiful English garden this Sunday?

With the weather improving for the weekend (hopefully) there’s a lovely event this Sunday 16th June 2019 – Ann Astbury-Pemberton’s gorgeous open garden event in aid of the Alzheimer’s Society.

For a donation you get to see a stunning large garden with remarkable and beautiful flowers and shrubs, there’s a tombola, raffle, refreshments and plant sales, and of course the chance to experience something that’s quintessentially British.

It runs from 10:30am until late and all are welcome, so what’s not to love?

 

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Missing teenager Taylor Allen found safe and well

Great news – Taylor Allen, missing from home in Walsall since Tuesday 11th June has been found safe and well.

Thanks to all who kept an eye out, shared and retweeted the appeals.

West Midlands Police posted:


Good news! Taylor Allen has been found safe and well.

Massive thank you to everyone who shared our post! 👍😊

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Lichfield repair cafe June meet up – get together and get things fixed this Saturday!

Never one to sit back and let life pass her by, that there Kate Cardigan from the wonderful Lichfield Lore is involved with the excellent Lichfield Repair Cafe project – which continues it’s regular residency this coming Saturday afternoon (Saturday 15th June 2019) at Curborough Community Centre, Lichfield from 2pm until 5pm.

Kate, who’s more usually known for her excellent work with Lichfield local history group, Lichfield Discovered and other projects, started a community initiative to help people repair, recycle and put back to good use things that my be broken or need some love.

This looks like a great way to have fun, meet up with other like minded folk and also learn some new skills.

If you’re unsure where to find  Curborough Community Centere, check out their contact page here, and the address for twatnav wranglers is 37, Reynolds Close, Lichfield Ws13 7NY.

I’ll let Kate explain:

Hello! 

The Lichfield Repair & Share cafe meets again at Curborough Community Centre on Saturday 18th May 2019 between 2pm and 5pm. As a way of reducing waste whilst learning new skills, we have a team of volunteer repairers on hand to show people how to try and mend their broken or damaged items, rather than throw them away. 

Bring your broken household items along to see if our team of volunteer repairs can help you fix them! As well as the repairs, we’ll also be running two fab free workshops – how to grow your own veg & making a fabric flower brooch. Or just pop in for a chat & a brew! All welcome, no charge but voluntary donations welcome 🙂

Volunteers from the centre will be running a cafe with hot and cold drinks and cakes. Whilst there is no charge, voluntary donations are appreciated!

Also this month, if you feel like YOU need a bit of repairing then your luck is in! There will be some free 15 min taster Shiatsu (traditional Japanese massage) slots, thanks to Sarah Holder https://t.co/CIYfB0H4lZ.

The cafe will be taking place at Curborough on the 3rd Saturday of every month and we are always looking for more people to get involved whether they want to offer their skills as a repairer or run a workshop. To find our more information, or to volunteer, please email lichfieldshare@gmail.com, join the group’s Facebook page Lichfield Repair Café or follow us on Twitter @lichfieldshare.

For more information, contact Kate Gomez at lichfieldshare@gmail.com or joing the Lichfield Repair & Share group on Facebook here.

Many thanks as ever!
Kate

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There’s a great autism support group meeting in Brownhills today and every Tuesday!

Just a heads up to let folk know that there’s a popular and regular autism support group meeting in Brownhills every Tuesday lunchtime from 1:30-2:30pm at the Smithy’s Forge pub, Lichfield Road, Brownhills, just off the Miner Island.

For parents, carers, etc. of children and adults with autism.

Weekly support group every Tuesday at the Smithys Forge, Brownhills 1:30-2:30 🌈

The group has been running for a few months now and is growing in popularity – so why not pop along to see what it’s all about?

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Lichfield Waterworks Trust June 2019 public meeting tonight

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Sandfields Pumping Station – a great historic building with immense history and social significance – not just to Lichfield, but to the Black Country. Lichfield Discovered and local historian Dave Moore have saved this valuable asset for the community.

Sandfields Pumping Station champion and public historian extraordinaire Dave Moore has been in touch to let me know that this evening, Monday 10th June 2019 there will be the monthly Public Meeting of the Lichfield Waterworks Trust charity, formerly the Friends of Sandfields Pumping Station group.

The meeting is at the Bowling Green pub, Lichfield from 7:30pm and is of course open to anyone interested.

Dave wrote:

Lichfield Waterworks Trust May Newsletter

The next public meeting of Lichfield Waterworks Trust will take place on:  Monday 1o June 2019 at 7.30pm, in the rear meeting room of the:

The Bowling Green
Friary Road
Lichfield
Staffordshire
WS13 6QJ
 
Tel: 01543 257344
 
The Bowling Green serves some great food and real ales.

May meeting notes are available here

Latest News

Building Lease Update:

The trustees continue to work on the heads of terms for the lease. It is important to get this part of the process right at the start, to avoid later complications.
 
The trustees hope you have the heads of terms completed by mid-June.
 
We see May as another month of significant progress, we would like to thank everyone for their ongoing support.
 
Important Note:

After the visit by Historic England on 16 Jan, the site has unfortunately been placed on the Heritage At Risk Register.

This is indeed sad news to see that this magnificent piece of industrial heritage is now officially at risk of permanent loss.
 
The trust is committed to continue working with the owner, Persimmon Homes Ltd to find a sustainable solution that will bring this building and its historic contents aback into a community use.

Tonight’s Talk

Following on from last months splendid talk from Alan Hill of the engineering team,exploring Water as a Mechanical Agent – the many forms of water power, Richard Green our electrical engineer will be talking about the Tram systems of Staffordshire and the Black Country. 

The talk will explore the various Tram operators that have worked the streets of Staffordshire and the Black Country. From the northern tip of the county Stoke on Trent to the furthest corner, Kinver and as far as Burton on Trent. The different operators involved and their success or failure in providing a transport system across Staffordshire and the Black Country
 
Richard’s talks are always interesting and innovating, this is certainly another one not to miss.

 

Health and Safety

We are really pleased to report that we have been working for yet another month where there have been no incidents relating to health and safety. A very big thank you again to everyone for working safely and looking after your fellow volunteers.

Engine Team Report

The Engine Team have made some significant progress this month.
 
The “difficult to reach” parts of the engine, at the cylinder-end, now have scaffolding in order to access them for cleaning and the team have wasted no time in getting stuck in.
 
Another job was to free off the valves and ensure that they are all in place. There is a story going around that one of the inlet valves had been taken and used on the Moor’s Gorse Cornish Pumping Engine. These engines were unfortunately two of the last Cornish beam engines ever to be scrapped. Fortunately, it was not the case.

A sigh of relief, the valves are still complete.

Some careful restoration works is need on the inlet valve stem.

Peter Ellis is an amazing photographer and was able to photograph the engines at Moor’s Gorse before they were lost.
 
Here is a link to Peters photos of Moor’s Gorse Pumping Station.
 
Work continues cleaning and lacquering the teak cladding on the ground floor level of the cylinder, the upper part of which may also be difficult to complete without scaffolding. The teak cladding and banding on the middle floor can be cleaned and lacquered once chequer plate cleaning, on this floor, has been completed.
 
Read more on the link below:

Progress notes from the engineering team are available here.

Building Team Report

The building team continue to make steady progress. The focus has been to improve the welfare facilities onsite.
 
The work on the one toilet to convert it to a washing area with a sink and drainer, improving the welfare facilities to benefit all visitors is almost complete.
 
Electrical Supply
 
Work continues in preparing the wring system for the new power supply.
 
Mains cables have now been installed, with the remaining connections still to be made. Contractors surveyors and engineers have been on-site to assess the final connection works. There are some issues relating to how and where the entry point is located for the connection that require further clarification. Our engineers have a clear plan on how this could be made to work safely.
 
Hopefully, electrical power will be available soon.

3D Walkthrough

Dudley Technical College has been extremely kind in producing a 3D Walkthrough for the trust. This is an amazing piece of work that not only showcases the site, it also provides an opportunity to those who are unable to visit the site or climb the stairs

Please click here to explore it.

History West Midlands – Podcast

History West Midlands have produced a stunning podcast titled – Making Cholera History in the Black Country.
 
Presented by writer and broadcaster Graham Fisher and Directed by Andy Partington, featuring David Moore, the podcast gives a detailed history of both Sandfields pumping Station and the story of clean water.

Please click here to find out more about the podcast.

Archive and Historical Research Team Report

The archive and research team are continuing with their sterling work preserving and cataloguing the historic artefacts left on site. Lists of water quality documents, tables, customer complaints and numerous other documents have been carefully and skilfully sorted, catalogued and stored. Their efforts are now bearing fruit as the extraordinary story of clean water unfolds, waiting to be told.
 
“The heritage of the modern water industry is almost entirely absent despite its unarguable relevance to human development.”
 
J. Douet

Donations

With over 2,500 volunteer working hours, (equates to more than two full time equivalents) and over £14,000 spent in cleaning equipment, materials and scaffold over the last two years. This month has seen quite a drain on our bank balance with invoices for the viability study and scaffolding landing on the desk. Looking at the engine now, as opposed to how it looked in 2016, the volunteers have made some remarkable progress.

We will also always invest in our people and we are planning further training days soon. All these costs soon mount up, so if you can donate, then please visit our donation page here.

Any amount is helpful, is well appreciated and will be carefully spent preserving our industrial past for our future generations, developing skills for our people and making our community a better place.

Please make cheques payable to; Lichfield Waterworks Trust, and send to our address:
 
22 Walsall Road
Lichfield
WS13 8AB
 
Membership

We would like this opportunity to welcome a few new members.

Thank you for joining the Lichfield Waterworks Trust. We hope you will enjoy your membership and become part of a very exciting heritage project that will benefit the people, the place and the community.

It would really help us if we develop and grow our membership. If you are not already a member and would you like to be a part of one of the region’s most exciting heritage projects then please, join us now by filling in Membership Application Form by going to our membership page here. It is free to join and be a part of this incredibly exciting project.
 
Finally
 
Thank you everyone for your continued support and helping to make a difference in our community. We hold work days every Friday between 10:00 and 12:00pm, please feel free to pop in a see us, we make everyone welcome and have free tea and coffee!

Do pop over to Dave Moore’s blog and check out the history of Sandfields Pumping Station, an almost forgotten gem – the group also has a Facebook page.

Dave is, of course, one of the leading lights of Lichfield Discovered, along with Kate ‘Cardigan’ Gomez from Lichfield Lore.

It’s great to see people like Dave encourage a better attitude to our historic buildings -please do attend if you’re able, it’s sure to be enlightening and educational.

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When there was a Palace in Brownhills!

There are a selection of articles that David Evans has spotted in the huge Gerald Reece collection that have really interested me and are very much worth a share – they are from a very much lost local history book by noted author and historian Ned Williams about local cinemas, and give the most complete history I’ve ever seen of the picture houses of the area – including Brownhills.

Published in 1984 and sold for £1.95: Now changing hands for more than £30. Que sera.

The following article (and ones to come) are all from a book I’ve never managed to obtain a copy of, and I last saw change hands for upwards of £30: ‘The Cinemas of Aldridge and Brownhills’ by Ned Williams, published in 1984. Gerald had kept copies of the articles and I feature the first here, about The Palace Cinema in Brownhills.

The Palace in Brownhills (I believe, but have a feeling I may be very wrong…) stood on the High Street just at the Church Road Junction, about where the Natwest Bank used to be, where Specsavers is now; it’s not to be confused with the Palace in Walsall Wood (‘The Blood Tub’), more of which later.

Corrections welcome and received with embarrassment.

The book was published by Uralia Press, of 28 Westland Road Wolverhampton with the ISBN of 0 946406 07 3 – do get a copy if you can. I pay tribute here to the immense cannon of work by Ned Williams, a truly remarkable author and researcher.

Ned wrote:

THE PALACE, BROWNHILLS

The Palace, Brownhills, presumably taken on 10th October 1924. The wooden facade hid the corrugated iron auditorium from view. The operating box is presumably above the entrance. (Collection of the late Wally Davies)

Like many other communities, the people of Brownhills first saw films in the travelling ‘bioscopes’ of the fairground. At least two showmen introduced the excitement of the new medium to local people in the area at the beginning of the twentieth century. One was a Mr. Twigden who erected a tent at the annual November ‘wake’ to present films. Some of the travelling showmen later settled down in the cinema business, and this will be clearly demonstrated in the history of Brownhills cinemas.

The first cinema to be provided for the people of Brownhills was the Palace. The man who was behind the Palace was Sidney Bray, later joined by his brother-in-law, Wally Davies. Later they took over the Regent so it is worth clearly establishing who they were.

Sidney Bray came from a business family established in Dudley. As the Cinemato­graph Act came into force in 1910 and premises in which films were to be shown had to be properly licensed for the purpose, it seems that Sidney Bray was already thinking that it would be an interesting business venture. He started showing films at the Drill Hall, Halesowen as from 30th January 1911, and, about the same time, showed films at the Temperance Hall, Langley. It may even have been Sidney’s marriage to Flossie Davies that introduced him to ‘showbusiness’. The Davies’ were Netherton brewers and Wally’s father was licensee of the Criterion Public House in the centre of Dudley in the early years of this century. Music Hall entertainment and probably early bioscope film shows took place at the Criterion. Wally Davies himself did not seem to place cinema-proprietorship high in his priorities. He was born in 1891, and in his teens seemed more interested in a technical career. He assisted Sidney Bray at Halesowen, and from 1913 onwards took responsibility for running the shows at Langley but his inventive mind was more concerned with designing and building aircraft. He left the area during the First World War to work in this sphere.

The mystery is: what made Sidney Bray turn his attention to Brownhills? Possibly practical and financial limitations determined Sidney Bray’s choice of sites, but it meant that his ‘circuit’ was remote and far-flung from his home in Dudley. (In 1915 he managed to establish himself in Dudley itself by taking over the Criterion, which, after the War, he rebuilt on a grand scale.)

Unlike Sidney Bray’s operations at Langley and Halesowen, it seems that in Brown­hills he had to build a purpose-built cinema, rather than rent an existing hall or convert an existing building. The Palace was built to a pattern adopted by many other early cinemas. A timber frame was clad and roofed in corrugated iron and the interior walls were wood. It was slightly set back from the main road and its wooden facade, as seen in the 1924 photograph, had a certain sense of style’about it. There was no balcony but the seats at the back of the auditorium were on a raked floor separated from the cheaper seats by a step. Like other cinemas of the time, the Palace generated its own electricity from a gas engine behind the building. Sometimes films were accompanied by the sound of rain on the roof and the thump of the gas engine, as well as the orchestra.

Sidney Bray: the cinema magnate from Dudley who, for some unknown reason, ventured out to Brownhills to build the Palace.

The Palace opened on Monday 23rd December 1912, a fact recorded in the diary of a local resident. No other details of the opening seem to be recorded. In distant Walsall the local paper did not mention the event. Thus the precious details of the history of small local cinemas is now very difficult to reconstruct. Local people remember some of the films, the children’s matinees, and, above alt, the people associated with the cinema.

In those far off silent days the musical accompaniment to the film was provided at the Palace by the Jones Brothers: Len on the cello, Sam on the violin and Fred at the piano. Len Jones, the youngest of the three, died recently at the age of 83: the last sur­vivor of the cinema’s trio. Len and Sam could also sing and were thus able to provide a singing act when the Palace began to include Variety in its programmes about two years after opening. Fred Jones married Miss Nancy Doricott who worked in the pay box. Harry Russell, whose name is associated at one time or another with each of the four cinemas described in this booklet, first encountered the cinema business at the Palace. As a boy he used to turn the pages of Fred’s piano music for 6d a week.

At one time the Palace was managed by Mr. and Mrs. Beckett. They had come to Brownhills as an act appearing at the Wakes. As Lightning Charley and Starlight Nell they performed an act with whips and lassos. For some reason they decided to crack cigarettes from volunteers’ mouths with the whip no more and settled in Brownhills to work at the Palace. They occasionally performed the act for the Variety shows, and, in fact, may have been responsible for bringing Variety to the Palace. Another retired travelling showman, a Mr. Norsden, left his booth of distorting mirrors to run the cinema but disappeared in mysterious circumstances – perhaps suggesting to Sidney Bray that the cinema needed stronger personal supervision at proprietorial level. In the great tradition of early cinemas the operators came in for a lot of catcalls and abuse when the film frequently broke. Two operators seem to be remembered from the early silent days : Jessie Shrigley and Joey Clegg.

In 1924 Wally Davies became Sidney Bray’s partner in owning and running the Palace. It was a time when Sidney Bray was very pre-occupied with his new Criterion in Dudley, and expansion in Halesowen. Whether these matters were the cause or not, the Palace at Brownhills seems to have been left very much to Wally Davies. It seems that Wally may even have brought his own parents into the day to day business of running the place.   Such economies became even more important when the Regent opened in 1928.

In the rivalry that developed between the Palace and the Regent, the acquisition of sound was particularly important. The Palace adopted a fairly primitive sound system straight away, with each reel of film mechanically synchronised with a disc on the gram­ophone. This was replaced after a further brief period of silence, with Warner Brothers’ Vitaphone system that enabled the Palace to bring many of the well known early silent films to Brownhills. The Regent opted for the sound-on-film system and their rivalry took the form of a battle between the two systems. By the mid 30’s, when both cinemas used the sound-on-film system, the Palace had adopted the Melotone system. There was no room to add a horn room at the back of the Palace and speakers had to be mounted on the wall on either side of the screen, and an additional one above it. By 1932 the rivalry ceased to exist for another reason : Sidney Bray and Wally Davies became the joint owners of the Regent.

For a time Wally Davies and Sidney Bray ran both the Regent and the Palace. The day-to-day supervision of both places was in the hands of Jack Turner, who moved into a house by the Regent. Jack Turner had taken on this job after an accident in the colliery and originally only had the Palace to worry about. About 1936 he was joined by four­teen-year-old Tom Bridgen who had left school to become a full-time worker at the Palace and Regent, doing all kinds of jobs around the cinema, including trying to stoke a very inaccessible boiler at the back of the building. He assisted Joseph Clegg in the operating box and later assisted Charlie Turner at the Regent. Ironically he left the Regent when cinemas were temporarily closed at the outbreak of War, but after only nine days in a factory he realised his heart was in the cinema business. (His subsequent career took Tom Bridgen to the operating boxes at the Forum, Caldmore Green, to the Avion, Aldridge and finally to the Dale, Willenhall where he was made redundant when that cinema closed, along with the Avion, at the end of 1967.)

Wally Davies: the enigmatic inventor, aviator, and hydraplane-builder who joined his brother-in-law in the cinema business at Halesowen, Langley and, ultimately, Brownhills.

For a while during the 1930’s the Palace closed altogether during the summer months when there was only enough trade to fill the Regent.  During the winters it opened for 3 days a week (Thursday, Friday and Saturday) which enabled three programmes a week to be presented in Brownhills: two at the Regent, one at the Palace. It also enabled the staff at the Palace to give its original rubber screen a fresh coat of whitewash each Saturday night, knowing it would be dry and ‘good-as-new’ by the next Thursday.

The final demise of the Palace is obscure. It enjoyed one reprise while the Regent was being rebuilt in 1938, when it opened for six days a week once more. No doubt it suffered summer closure again in 1939 and by the following winter the War was under­way. One night a heavy fall of snow caused the roof to collapse and it seems that it was no longer worthwhile repairing the ‘Tin Tabernacle’ and thus it was closed completely. It has proved impossible, so far, to date the final show.

This remarkable material has have been very generously supplied by the great local historian Gerald Reece, and beautifully prepared for posting by the wonderful David Evans for blog readers to enjoy.

I thank Gerald and David for yet another remarkable article – you are a very wonderful and generous gentlemen.

Gerald Reece, like the author Ned Williams is of course a talented and superlative local historian, now resident in Devon, who wrote the seminal work ‘Brownhills – A walk into history’ upon which this blog stands.

If you have any thoughts or questions on the Palace or any other cinema in Brownhills, please do share them – comment here, find me on social media or mail me: BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com. Thanks.

Gerald and Cherry Reece: on whose shoulders all my work here stands. Image kindly supplied by David Evans.
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A family history question from The Hussey estate and Walsall Wood: Can you help, please?

Do you remember the Beddows family of the Hussey Estate and Walsall Wood? Image from Apple Maps.

I’ve had a very interesting enquiry from Emma Mills who’s working on her family history which involves a family that were resident in Walsall Wood and the Hussey Estate just before World War Two.

I thank Emma for a very interesting enquiry – she wrote:

Hello Bob

I’m looking for some assistance in finding information of some of my ancestors.

The Beddows were originally from Walsall Wood and Hussey Road, Brownhills area which I know was where they were in 1939.

Lily Beddow I believe was married to William Barnard and their daughters were Hilda Beddow and Eliza Barnard.

Any help would be great! 🤔

I know we still have the surname Beddows locally and there are a fair few with that surname about – but the question is, are they related?

What do you know, and can you please help?

Please comment here, say hi on social media or mail me: BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com – thanks to Emma for a really interesting curiosity

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Fancy finding out more about local wildlife? You can, this afternoon!

I note that since it’s a decent day it would be an excellent chance to nip up to Stubbers Green with the kids, grandkids of even just by yourself and chat to the Swan Patrol.

The Patrol are there right now – this and every Sunday from 1-3pm and have bird books, binoculars and a wealth of knowledge to share – so why not join them? There’s so much more local wildlife than people think!

The reserve is by the pools on Stubbers Green Road, between Aldridge and Shelfield.

Ann Lawrence of the Swan Patrol said:

Do you want to know more about nature and wildlife?

Stubbers Green Nature Reserve Aldridge
Swan Patrol every Sunday 1-3pm

Lollipops and stickers for children that bring good healthy bird foods. Sweet corn, lettuce, porridge oats, branflakes, cornflakes, vegetable peelings, bird seed.

We have binoculars and bird books available to use.


Donations welcome

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Fancy a mini market this morning?

I notice there’s a mini-market event this morning (Saturday, 8th June 2019) at Brownhills Methodist Church, Silver Street, Brownhills.

Maybe you can catch a bargain, have a brew? It runs from 9am-12noon. All are welcome.

The Silver Street Church is busy and has an active congregation and you can find out more about it at their website here and Facebook page here.

Image kindly supplied by David Evans.

 

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Active Games Club for kids at Brownhills Community Centre this morning!

No Stay and play this Saturday 8th June 2019 as Stacey is on holiday! But if you’ve go older kids why not try the PEPA Active Sports Club at Brownhills Community Centre from 10amn-11am?

It’s suitable for kids from 6-11 years old and there’s all manner of fun stuff going on – Dodgeball, Archery, Nerf Wars – just £3 per week per kid.

See you there?

🌟 Saturday 8th June 🌟
🌟 Brownhills Community Centre and The Lamp 🌟
🌟 £3 per session 🌟
🌟 Bring a friend and get the next session free 🌟
🌟 6 – 11 year olds 🌟
🌟 Come and have a go on our smoothie bike🚲 🌟
🌟10 am – 11am 🌟

💫Keeping Kids Active 💫

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Find out about the restoration of our lost canal in Brownhills this evening!

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You could join with great folks like these to restore our history! Image from Lichfield and Hatherton Canal Restoration Trust.

Just a quick note to point out that the Lichfield and Hatherton Canal Restoration Trust are holding their Annual General Meeting tonight, Friday nevening (Friday, 7th June 2019) at 7:15pm in Brownhills, at the Parkview Centre (the old Council House on the Miner Island), and all are welcome to attend.

There will also be a talk from Peter Walker of the Canal and River Trust after the meeting – Peter is Technical Support head and responsible for many engineering aspects of our canals – including also their interaction with HS2.

If you’ve been thinking about supporting the trust or volunteering, this is a great way to find out more about them and what they do. You can find out more about volunteering on the project from this excellent blog post by Christine Howles.

At the moment, the volunteers are currently beavering away on the route of the lost line between Barracks Lane, Ogley Hay and The Boat restaurant, on the Lichfield Road at Summerhill, opening the route for walkers, and also on the stretch between Pipe Hill and Lichfield where a nature reserve is being created, as well as many other spots along the route.

The Lichfield and Hatherton Canal Restoration Trust wrote of the meeting:

Our 29th Annual General Meeting will be held at Park View Centre, Chester Road North, Brownhills, Walsall WS8 7JB on
Friday 7th June 2019 at 7.15 pm.

1. Apologies.
2. Minutes of the 28th Annual General Meeting 8th June 2018.
3. Matters Arising.
4. Directors’ Reports.
5. Treasurer’s Report and Presentation of Accounts for the year ended 31st December 2018.
6. Chairman’s Report.
7. Election of Directors:
(a) Directors retiring by rotation and eligible to stand for re-election:
Peter Buck, Stefan Szulc and Bob Williams.
(b) Directors co-opted during the year and nominated by Council for election: None
(c) Any other nominations received: None.
8. Appointment of Accounts Examiner.
9. Any Other Business.
10. Close of formal business.
11. Guest Speaker:
Peter Walker, Head of Technical Support at Canal & River Trust. Peter is responsible for the Canal and River Trust’s interaction with HS2, its restoration and hydrology activities, waterway acquisitions and the CRT team which secure funding from external partners.

After the AGM, tea and biscuits will be served with an opportunity to view displays and sales material.

If you want to find out more, you can get in touch with the Trust on Twitter @LHCRT1, on Facebook or on their website.

Posted in Brownhills stuff, cycling, Environment, Fun stuff to see and do, Interesting photos, Local Blogs, Local History, Local media, News, planning, Reader enquiries, Shared media, Shared memories, Social Media, Spotted whilst browsing the web, Walsall community, Wildlife | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Urgent message from West Midlands Police – beware of courier fraud and other phone scams

Many of the current scams operating are very convincing indeed – warn your relatives about courier fraud and to to give away information, no matter how authoritative the caller sounds. Image from iStockphoto

I’ve become aware over the last few days that phone scammers are targeting the local area once more –  and are employing a number of methods, including courier fraud and impersonating tax officials – please warn your elderly and vulnerable friends, family and neighbours.

West Midlands Police wrote:

Courier Fraud, Bogus Police and Bank Officials Alert
What you need to know

Individuals have been receiving phone calls from people claiming to be a police officer or banking official

The suspect will say either: There has been fraudulent activity at the victims’ bank and the staff at the bank are involved, the victim is then asked to withdraw money to either keep it safe or assist the police with their investigation.

A business such as a jewellers or currency exchange is fraudulent and they require the victims’ assistance to help secure evidence by purchasing jewellery or exchange a large amount of currency to hand over to the police.

The victims’ card has been compromised and used to purchase goods by a suspect, the victim is requested to withdraw their money to keep it safe or hand over their bank card to the police

Occasionally the victim will be told to dial a non-emergency extension of ‘161’ to receive confirmation of the individual’s bogus identity, the bogus official will advise the victim to lie about the reason for the withdrawal or purchase if challenged by staff, as the staff member is involved in the fraud.

A courier attends the victim’s home address to collect the goods the same day Often the victim is given a code word for the courier as a way of authentication

​​​​​​​Your bank or the police will never:

  • Phone and ask you for your PIN or full banking password.
  • Ask you to withdraw money to hand over to them for safe-keeping.
  • Ask you to transfer money out of your account.
  • Send someone to your home to collect cash, PINs, cards or cheque books.

For more information about how to protect yourself online visit

www.cyberaware.gov.uk  and www.takefive.stopfraud.org.uk

 tell your relatives and neighbours about these scams, and impress upon them how important it is not to give away dpersonal details on the phone to cold callers. If in doubt, get details, call companies back and have someone else check them out before making any kind of payment for anything.

Explain that no official body will turn up at your door or call you demanding money – least of all the police.

Please,  if you have any further information relating to the operation of this con or if you or someone you know as been targeted, please contact West Midlands Police by dialling 101 (999 in an emergency, obviously) or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

Posted in Brownhills stuff, Clayhanger stuff, Environment, Events, Local media, News, Shared media, Social Media, Walsall community | Leave a comment

Get some Iron, man – the 2019 triathlon hits Chasewater and South Staffordshire this Sunday

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Care for a dip? No, me neither…

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ll know that this Sunday (June 9th 2019), the fifth Staffordshire Ironman 70.3 Triathlon will be staged, with a 1.2 mile early morning swim in Chasewater being amongst the highlights

IRONMAN 70.3 Staffordshire consists of a 1.2-mile swim in Chasewater reservoir and a 56-mile bike course through the stunning countryside outside Lichfield, Burton-upon-Trent, and across Cannock Chase area of outstanding natural beauty. The 13.1-mile run will start at Riverway, take athletes in and around the Stafford Town Centre before finishing in Market Square.

Read more at the organiser’s site here.

As a result of this Caccess to Chasewater will be limited on both Saturday and Sunday:

Chasewater Country Park and Pool Lane will be closed to vehicles on Saturday 9 June 08:00-18:00 and Sunday 10 June 04:00 – 10:00.

Pedestrians can access the Park at all times. A shuttle bus service will be operating on Sunday between Chasewater and Holland Park car park on both days.

Further information on accessing Chasewater Country Park and the shuttle bus service can be found on the website.

Since the event consists of running and cycling races too, there will be a series of road closures in Staffordshire throughout the day (details on the Ironman website here).

The routes affected around Chasewater. Image from the Ironman website. Click for a larger version.

IRONMAN 70.3 Staffordshire have produced road closure maps with information for local residents to be aware of the safety closures which take place on the Sunday morning of the race. This should allow residents to plan their travel and minimise any impact from the event on their own plans. This may involve using alternative routes over the event weekend or adjusting journey times slightly.

Access for Emergency Services will be maintained at all times

Maps displaying all the road closures can be found on the event website here.

Please plan any travel in advance and be prepared to use alternative routes to minimise disruption to your journey.

More detailed closure information from the Ironman website. Click for a larger version.

There’s been lots of publicity for the event, and I’m interested in reader contributions on the day – photos, reviews etc.

A quick note to those same faces who every Ironman mail me, message me and otherwise complain about the early morning disturbance in the locality: Sorry, but I can’t fix it, can’t help and I fully support the event. The inconvenience is one day a year, relatively minor and over in a few hours.

Why not go watch it, or take the opportunity to get up early and go somewhere else?

Any complaints should be directed to the organisers here, I can’t and won’t do anything.

Best of luck to any readers competing!

Swimming in Chasewater at dawn? Rather you than me, pal. Image from Ironman UK.

Posted in Brownhills stuff, Cannock Chase, Chasewater, cycling, Environment, Events, Express & Star, Fun stuff to see and do, Interesting photos, Just plain daft, Local Blogs, Local media, News, Panoramio photo discussions, Reader enquiries, Shared media, Social Media, Spotted whilst browsing the web, Walsall community | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

There’s a disco at the Motivation Hub this Saturday for adults with additional needs

It’s good to see the Moivation Hub in Walsall Wood going from strength to strength – this wonderful facility for those with learning disabilities or other special needs fills a real local gap in provision and provides a warm, safe and welcoming atmosphere for folk to socialise, learn and hang out.

This is a heads up to folk who may be interested that on this Saturday evening, 8th June 2019, they will be holding a disco night for adults (18+) with additional needs.

It’s just £2.50 per head, carers free. There’s a real gap locally for events like this and this is wonderful to see.

All this takes place at the Hub’s premises in the former Youth Club behind Walsall Wood Primary School at Streets Corner Walsall Wood – Call Suzanne Sant for more information on 07388 553615‬ or email her on santsuzanne@yahoo.com – you can also check out the Motivation Hub’s Facebook page here.

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There’s a great autism support group meeting in Brownhills today and every Tuesday!

Just a heads up to let folk know that there’s a popular and regular autism support group meeting in Brownhills every Tuesday lunchtime from 1:30-2:30pm at the Smithy’s Forge pub, Lichfield Road, Brownhills, just off the Miner Island.

For parents, carers, etc. of children and adults with autism.

Weekly support group every Tuesday at the Smithys Forge, Brownhills 1:30-2:30 🌈

The group has been running for a few months now and is growing in popularity – so why not pop along to see what it’s all about?

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A lovely steamy Saturday…

Nice bowler, mate. Great event for hat spotting.

Yesterday (Saturday 1st June 2019) I took the annual pilgrimage up the A515 to the annual Steam Party event at Klondyke Mill in Draycott in the Clay, home of the North Staffordshire and Cheshire Traction Engine Club – It’s an event I try to attend every year, either in the summer or the October.

(This article should have been up this morning, apologies: I’ve had an issue with the blog hosts which has now been resolved but has rendered me unable to post for most of the day – Bob).

It’s quintessentially British, it’s a feast for mechanical geeks, people watchers and vintage buffs of all stripes. I always have a whale of a time geeking out over the machines.

This year was made a little tricky to document as I set out completely accidentally without a camera at all. All of these images were from my phone – and it shows just how far camera tech in mobile phones has come on that these photos are actually pretty much OK. Sorry for the lack of fine detail…

I sooooo wanted a go on this…

There were traction engines in full steam driving around the yard, stationary engines, classic cars, tractors, land rovers and much more – it’s well worth a visit and the people are very friendly.

The twice yearly ‘Steam Party’ is regular, and the next one is on the 12th and 13th October 2019. It’s well worth a visit, but the entrance fee can be a shock if there’s a few of you; but the fuel alone isn’t cheap and the North Staffs and Cheshire Traction Engine Club need all the funds they can raise.

 

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Early another morning: Chasewater from the air

I had a really positive reaction the other day to local lad Ian Henderson’s drone video of Brownhills – well, he’s done another, this time of Chasewater at a similarly early time.

I’m a sucker for drone photography and this is a real belter of our favourite local country park and reservoir from the air.

My thanks to Ian – this really is a splendid piece of work – if you want to talk to him about the film or his work, you can catch him here on Facebook.

If there’s anything you spotted or you have a comment to make, feel free to comment on this post, mail me on BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com or tug my shirt on Social media.

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New Pilates classes in Brownhills every Saturday

Just a quick heads up that there’s a new Pilates class on at The Memorial Hall (Memo) in Brownhills this evening and every Saturday onwards.

It starts at 6:30pm and runs until 7:30pm, costing a fiver a pop – great value for an activity that keeps you fit, but gently, and can really help with flexibility and general mental wellbeing.

Why not give it a go and let me know how you go on? Comment here, mail me on BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com or tap my shoulder on social media…

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Why not Stay and Play – at Brownhills Community Centre this morning

If you’ve a child or children under 4 years of age, there is a great Stay and Play session running at Brownhills Community Centre in the heart of Brownhills this Saturday morning 1st June 2019 from 10-11:30am.

It costs just two quid per kid and includes fruit and a drink, so it’s great value and it’s run by those wonderful people at the Little Green Dragons Nursery, who are resident at the centre and are fully qualified nursery teachers.

There are games and toys and all manner of fun for the weans – and you get a break to boot.

Saturday 1st June 2019

Ice cream Ice cream come and get your ice cream 🎵 ….. Our messy/sensory tray will be filled with cotton balls and sprinkles and cones to create your own ice creams 🍦🍦🍦🍦🍦🍦🍦🍦🍦

Our creative table will be painting 🖼

Sandtray will be open and accessible as it is every week 👍🏼

Along with all our other areas of play within the nursery setting:

• home corner
• construction
• small world
• maths area
• cosy book/music area
• baby sensory area

See you all Saturday ….

Don’t forgot the outdoors area which is loved by all 🌈🌈🌈

10.00am-11.30am
£2 per child
Snack included

feel free to invite your friends with children aged 0-4 years and share our events

This group is held at Little Green Dragons Day Nursery every Saturday morning 

The Community Centre is what my generation would know as ‘The Annexe’ – the old Central Boy’s School, now a bustling community resource. To find out more,  you can pop in or call them on 01543 452119.

The Community Association have lots of stuff going on, and loads of great facilities, right in the heart of Brownhills. I love what they’re about and all the great things they’re doing.

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Car boot sale and charity car wash in Walsall Wood this Saturday


I know you lot really love a good boot sale and I’ve been alerted to the fact that there’s one going on tomorrow (1st June 2019) at the revitalised Horse and Jockey pub in Walsall Wood.

The Horse and Jockey has recently had a change of management and is getting very good reviews – particularly for food. You could pop in for a bite at the same time! Image from Trip Advisor.

The organisers said:

Firefly Event Management Presents Carboot Saturday at the Horse and Jockey Walsall Wood

Charity car wash too!

Grab your clutter and turn it in to cash…

All traders welcome if you would like a pitch get in touch with me here 

Massive car park and field

You can get your wheels cleaned by the charity fundraisers from 10am (who are raising money for the excellent Naval Cadets of TS Vigo based in Clayhanger) and also buy a whole range of stuff you never realised you needed!

Car boot setup 10am, open from 12pm: free to buyers, traders £5 for cars and £10 for vans/trailers. Food and drink available, with a bouncy castle for the kids.

See you there?

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Big Bounce family fun in Burntwood this afternoon

Just a headsup (I’ve only just noticed, sorry) to point out there’s a Big Bounce family fun event taking place at Coppy Nook Playing Field, Hospital Road, Burntwood this very afternoon, Friday 31st May 2019 from 1:30pm until 3:30pm.

It’s £7 per child with adults and babies free.

There will be rides, inflatables, slides, toddler zone and all kinds of supervised fun.

The organisers said:

Burntwood Big Bounce returns outside at Coppy Nook Playing fields this Whitsun School Holiday.

Morning & Afternoon Sessions bring Family inflatable fun for children of all ages. We have dedicated equipment for under 5’s + all the Big Slides, assault courses, Bouncy castles and games including the new Dash & Grab Hungry Hippos game, Human Wrecking Ball, Duck & Jump sweeper & loads more.

Just turn up & pay on entry we now accept card & cash payments. No reservations required on our outdoor events

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A word about the local deer, please…

This is really important with the deer currently preparing to nurture their young.

I need to alert readers if possible to the issue of the local deer population at the moment, many of whom will be giving birth or nurturing this season’s young – yesterday a concerned local came across a newly born fawn on Brownhills Common and was challenged by the mother.

They can be very aggressive in protection of their offspring.

The man who made the discovery was concerned for the health of the fawn and called rangers and the RSPCA – who judged that the fawn was fine and should be left alone.

If you are concerned for the health or other aspects of a deer, you can call the police on 101 who will contact the on call ranger for help. But fawns should be left – nature will take its course.

If there’s been a serious traffic collision, of course dial 999.

As the days move on to high summer, the females will be straying from their normal herd groupings and places to find quiet cover to give birth, and then they’ll be quite protective of their young.

A very long-range photo (hence the poor quality) showing heavily pregnant fallow deer on the Chase. They were skittish, and clearly easily spooked.

I know we all love these beautiful, majestic creatures and seeing them on the commons and green spaces hereabouts is always a treat – but at the moment, the ladies will be truculent and intolerant of dogs and nuisance.

If you’re in a place where there are likely to be deer, make sure your dog is on a lead, and keep your distance. This is true at any time especially at Chasewater where morons with out of control animals every year are responsible for scared deer and disturbed nesting birds – please don’t be like them; control your hounds please.

If you’re lucky you’ll see fawns as they become mobile and believe me, they have cute in bucketloads – but if you find one alone, heed the warning above; leave well alone and don’t touch because momma will be back!

These bathing beauties were spotted taking a dip in the canal near Chasewater back at this time in 2017 by good pal and top fellow blogger Linda Mason.

This is, however a great time of year to spot deer if you’re responsible, and who knows you may spot them bathing like Linda did above and Angela Morris recorded in 2016 when she created the following footage. My thanks to Angela for sharing it.

I think almost everyone hereabouts love the deer, and they are wonderful to watch. Please do, but do so responsible – and feel free to share any footage you create!

Thanks, all.

Posted in Brownhills stuff, Cannock Chase, Chasewater, Clayhanger stuff, cycling, Environment, Events, Followups, Fun stuff to see and do, Interesting photos, Local Blogs, Local media, News, Reader enquiries, Shared media, Social Media, Spotted whilst browsing the web, Walsall community, Walsall Wood stuff, Wildlife | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

There’s a great feel good film for half term at Brownhills very own cinema this afternoon!

There’s a great sing-along half term showing of kid’s cult classic animated film Moana this Thursday afternoon (30th May 2019) in the cinema right at the heart of Brownhills: The Lamp, at Brownhills Community Centre.

It kicks off at 2.00pm and you can book tickets online. The audience are invited to sing along for a fun showing of a wonderful, feelgood film. 

Brownhills Community Association wrote:

Half-term fun for all the family as our sing-along season continues with this popular Disney film.

Free popcorn and treats for the kids!

Synopsis

An adventurous teenager sails out on a daring mission to save her people. During her journey, Moana meets the once-mighty demigod Maui, who guides her in her quest to become a master way-finder. Together they sail across the open ocean on an action-packed voyage, encountering enormous monsters and impossible odds. Along the way, Moana fulfills the ancient quest of her ancestors and discovers the one thing she always sought: her own identity.


Doors open @ 1:30pm for 2:00pm showing

Tickets

£3.00

Call the Box Office between 9:00am and 5:00pm Monday to Friday on 01543 452 119 or order safely online

Tickets available online at the link below (no fees) or from 01453 452119.

https://www.ticketsource.co.uk/the-lamp-arts-centre

If you haven’t yet visited The Lamp for a show, you really are missing out; it’s a wonderfully modern and intimate community theatre with a wonderful atmosphere operated by a lovely community of dedicated folk, located in the old Annex or Brownhills Central Boys School right there on the Miner Island in Brownhills. You can find out more here.

Please ring the crew on 01543 452 119 if you have any queries or need any help or email: info@thelamparts.co.uk.

There’s loads going on at the Activity Centre on the Miner Island in Brownhills!
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Clayhanger or bussed!

Boy have I a lot of stuff to catch up with – with last weekend being the busiest event weekend of the summer and me taking a break for some long bike rides, I’ve neglected you guys on the blog. Sorry about that. Hopefully I can rectify that in coming days.

With that in mind I’ve had this gem in from reader Andy Shears, who was clearly a Clanger lad when this picture was posted in the local paper in 1967.

It appears to be a school bus protest:

November 20th 1967 – from the typeface looks like the Express and Star. Click for a larger version.

 Andy said:

Hi Bob

Enclosed pic and clippings from 1967 Nov 20. Found this while going through some old paperwork in moms house. I was 9 at the time

Do we know who every kid was, or still is ?

I can supply a copy of the text if required

Cheers
Andy Shears

Now, I’m aware the issue of busses in Clayhnager was a vexed matter for many years – senior school age kids had to walk over The Spot to get to Brownhills or up either of the two roads into Clayhanger which weren’t pleasant back then, particularly in bad weather.

Clayhanger, to the best of my knowledge, didn’t get a bus at all until the Bloxwich circular minibus  service started around 1987. This ended the almost siege-like isolation many of the village felt – with the place being so isolated it’s always been in a bit of a unique position.

Thank you Andy for an excellent contribution – and I would love to see the text so I can add it, and as he asks, I’d be fascinated to know who the kids – and the adult are. Some great placards too – I note Councillor Burt seems to be in support, but what’s the reference to Don Everall?

If you can help, please do: Comment here or mail me: Brownhillsbob at Googlemail dot com, or tug my sleeve on social media.

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Don’t forget New Hall Mill open day today!

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New Hall Mill is a splendid place, restored and run by wonderfully dedicated volunteers.

Theres a lovely thing to visit locally this Bank Holiday Monday (28th May 2018), that’s close by, free and absolutely fascinating

New Hall Mill is open again next Monday for the second open day of 2018. I can heartily recommend the place – it’s fascinating and I had a great time there on 2015 Spring Bank Holiday Monday – not enough people know about this wonderful building.

There’s also an appeal ongoing for people who may be interested to join the friends of New Hall Mill and help in all sorts of ways – the team need all kinds of expertise from guides to engineering types who may have time to spare. Speak to any member of the friends group when you’re there.

The open day is free to enter too (although donations are welcomed).

The Friends of New Hall Mill said:

Bob

The Friends of New Hall Mill will be opening the water mill to the public for the Spring Bank Holiday Monday on 28th May. A bumper festival of events will be located in the meadows and mill yard. Come along and see flour being produced from wheat in the traditional way, have a go on a hand operated quern, experience live music and dancing or simply enjoy the tranquillity of the pathways alongside the mill pond and in the meadow. Something for all tastes awaits.

There is an exhibition room and small tearoom selling cakes and beverages along with a garden shop where produce may be purchased from the millers garden. Don’t forget to visit Auntie Wainwrights to find that bargain that you always wanted.

For your entertainment, returning by popular request, we have The U3A Swing Division playing Swing and Big Band Jazz between 11:00 – 11:45. This will be followed at 13:00 & 14:00 by Glorishears of Brummagem Morris Dancers.

In the cart shed will be a display of Large Steam Models

In the meadows and grounds; we have a bumper collection of Displays & Demonstrations –

  • Turner collection of Steam Models
  • Snuffles Hedgehog Rescue
  • Bournville Bread Basket
  • The National Trust
  • Walsall Hand Spinners
  • Vintage Bike Display
  • Helens Handmade Gifts
  • Face Painting
  • Ladybird Books Display
  • Women’s Hair Accessories Display
  • Smoking Memorabilia
  • 16th Sutton Coldfield Scout Group
  • Birmingham & The Black Country Wildlife Trust
  • Milk Bottles & Churns Display
  • The Vintage Memory Store (vintage and retro toy collection)
  • Model Fairground
  • Gas Engine
  • The Beekeeper

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I totally geeked out over this wonderful place.

Entry to the site and Parking is free, donations are always welcome in order that we raise funds to maintain the buildings for all to see in the future.

Please note that we open at 10:00 and close at 16:00 with last entry onto site being at 15:45.

Only disability assistance dogs are allowed on site.

Access to the mill is off Wylde Green Road, Sutton Coldfield, B76 1QU some 200 metres from National Cycle Route 534.

Having seen what we do, could you be able to assist? In order to continue holding these events, we need additional membership to help out on Open Days and Work Days. It is not all about Flour production – We have ageing machinery to maintain, kitchen staff are always welcome, there are openings in all areas. Have a chat with a volunteer on Open day.

Hoping to see you there
Alan Dawson – A friend of New Hall Mill.

More details can be found on their website – www.newhallmill.org.uk or their Facebook page here.

This is certainly a project worth visiting and supporting – please do pop along if you can.  You can check out a gallery of my photos taken there last year below. I had a great time.

Posted in cycling, Environment, Followups, Fun stuff to see and do, Interesting photos, Local Blogs, Local History, Local media, News, Reader enquiries, Shared media, Social Media, Spotted whilst browsing the web, Walsall community, Walsall Council | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Early one morning: Brownhills from the air

 

A lovely video post surfaced o Facebook yesterday from local drone pilot Ian Henderson, and while I’m busy doing the Bank Holiday Weekend thing, I thought I’d post it here for you to enjoy.

You all know I love drone photography and this is a lovely, beautifully edited segue of our town on a lovely early sunny morning.

My thanks to Ian – this really is a splendid piece of work – if you want to talk to him about the film or his work, you can catch him here on Facebook.

If there\s anything you spotted or you have a comment to make, feel free to comment on this post, mail me on BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com or tug my shirt on Social media.

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Fancy finding out more about local wildlife? You can, this afternoon!

I note that since it’s a decent day it would be an excellent chance to nip up to Stubbers Green with the kids, grandkids of even just by yourself and chat to the Swan Patrol.

The Patrol are there this and every Sunday from 1-3pm and have bird books, binoculars and a wealth of knowledge to share – so why not join them? There’s so much more local wildlife than people think!

The reserve is by the pools on Stubbers Green Road, between Aldridge and Shelfield.

Ann Lawrence of the Swan Patrol said:

Do you want to know more about nature and wildlife?

Stubbers Green Nature Reserve Aldridge
Swan Patrol every Sunday 1-3pm

Lollipops and stickers for children that bring good healthy bird foods. Sweet corn, lettuce, porridge oats, branflakes, cornflakes, vegetable peelings, bird seed.

We have binoculars and bird books available to use.


Donations welcome

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Fancy a pool tournament this weekend? There’s one at The Swan, Brownhills on Sunday!

This Sunday 26th May, The Swan, Pelsall Road will be holding a Pool Match and raising funds for the Brownhills Christmas Tree Appeal – which is going great guns

It’s a 3pm start. Register prior to the Match to enter or just pop along and give your support.

On behalf of the Christmas Tree Appeal Committee Members, we thank The Swan and all those who have contributed, and continue to do so, for your generosity.

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