Reality check. Can we all grow up a bit please?

I see today, Brownhills Town Centre Partnership is pushing their Summer Festival in the town by sharing links on Facebook to an oddly-formatted document scan of their promo leaflet, which seems pretty much Facebook only.
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An epic battle unfolds

Well, The Wood lads did well yesterday, and held the posh chaps from Geurnsey to a 0-0 draw after 120 minutes of what was, by all accounts, tense, entertaining football. Our roving sports correspondent, young David Evans, had this to say:

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Reading allowed

It’s about time I gave some other bloggers a plug again. There’s a wealth of good stuff out there, and I do like to share the posts of those I read and enjoy. For the best in local stuff, always take a punt over to the YamYam for Walsall, or any of its sister sites, The Staffie, The Brummie etc. – just check the ‘beyond’ tab in the menu bar.

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Something to build upon

Just a quick note to point out that I’ve had a fantastic response to my musings on the subject of the BOAK fire, and my desire to channel some of the creative anger abounding in the online community into something to record the state, and lift the profile of,  Walsall’s great architectural heritage. If you…

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After the fire had gone out – an appeal

Last Friday evening, I came back home via Walsall at around 7:30pm. On the way through what was a very weary, against the wind journey, I popped down to take a shufty at what was left of the BOAK building, destroyed by a suspicious fire earlier in the week. Sadly, after sneaking through the security…

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Rubbish service?

Following the furore on social media over the last week, Dan Slee, press officer at Walsall Council offered the following press statement on the question of the controversial recycling leaflets currently being distributed to homes in Walsall Borough. I’ll let you read it in full, and then I’ll add my comments. Cllr Tom Ansell, Walsall…

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I do refuse

For a week or so now, new recycling guidance leaflets have been delivered to residents of Walsall Borough by the council. There has been a degree of justified concern expressed that the authority appear to have limited the range of material one can now recycle – particularly plastics. After a week of largely ignoring our…

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Resolution for Aiden

I’m pleased to say that the sad case of Aiden McHaffie, covered here several times, seems to have reached a satisfactory resolution with apologies and other remedial action from West Midlands Police. Aiden himself wrote about it on his blog last night, and his partner Linda Mason has written a great piece about it today, which…

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Still no justice from Aiden: Protect your arse and serve nobody

I note with some concern that fellow cyclists Aiden Mchaffee and Linda Mason are still struggling to get any action out of West Midlands Police following Aiden’s dreadful accident in Birmingham last March. Aiden has been regularly blogging events, and regular readers will recall that I posted about his plight, and even Radio WM picked up…

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Effecting a change? Your vote counts, don’t waste it.

Just a short note to jog people’s memories today. Today is the day of the local council elections, in which those of us in Walsall (and many other places) get to vote for our local councils. Here in Walsall, it looks very much like the Conservatives, who’ve had control of the council for  the last twelve…

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Cycling safety: Justice for Aiden, plus Linda on Radio WM

Just a quick note to point out that Aiden McHaffie, the keen cyclist currently nursing a broken wing after being involved in an accident in Birmingham, seems to be receiving some justice at last. On Monday, I offered my opinion and reblogged Aiden’s story from his own journal, of how West Midlands Police had tried…

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The Clangers…

Late to the party as ever, I notice there’s a great blog for Clayhanger. It’s been about for a couple of years, but sadly, it slipped well under my radar. I spotted it today thanks to the magic of Walsall’s premier news-hub The YamYam, still plugging away, collecting the very best in Walsall news and…

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New kids on the block

I’d like to take time out to welcome a new blog on the scene in Brownhills. I noticed last night that a new blogger journal had been set up by Brownhills Barry and Clayhanger Clive, and they seem interested in local history and local current affairs.It’s good to have another addition to the burgeoning local…

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Information about public sector industrial action today

From the Website of Walsall Council (see the latest statement by clicking here, or check out TheYamYam for the latest news from Walsall media): Last updated: 29/11/2011 16:05:15 Walsall residents are being advised that some council services, including school closures could be affected by industrial action on Wednesday, 30 November 2011. As trade unions across…

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Over in WS5, something interesting stirs…

I notice today that we have a new blog for South Walsall on the scene, the WS5 blog. It needs to find its feet, but there’s certainly some interesting stuff promised there. Run by a keen chap called Dean Hill, Dean has been working very hard today on twatter to promote his new venture, and…

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A farewell to arms (via The Plastic Hippo)

If you only read one thing today, read this from the Plastic Hippo. It’s the most apposite, brilliant comment on the rash of sudden justice I’ve yet seen. Oh, and bon voyage, Mr. Hippo. I trust you’ve had your distemper booster and parvo shot? Have a good one… There comes a time when even the…

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Prophet margin?

I spotted this on Facebook today, and I’m not really sure what to make of it. The author, Walsall Prophet, has created a newsletter style .PDF file in the manner of stuff by the blogging community in Walsall, making the following rather bold claim in their profile: Along with the Mushroom and Brownhills Bob thought…

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A pressing issue

On Saturday, 16th July 2011, Express & Star columnist Dan Wainwright ran his usual column about local government in the region. Even though Walsall Council is gripped by a Single Status pay controversy, as is Dudley, and other notable stuff had happened in civic life in the previous week, Dan decided to fill three quarters…

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Time and tide (via The Plastic Hippo)

Yet again, The Plastic Hippo vocalises beautifully what I’m thinking. Is this the nastiest, most unpleasant government we’ve ever had? As every day passes, the pronouncements from the Prime Minister become more and more bizarre. I fear for my country, the social state and what is being done to it by people who have never…

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The Wall

I see that the Express & Star have finally jumped the shark. They’re introducing a paywall, so that most of their online daily content is subscriber only. In short, there’s very little on their website that you’ll be able to read for free. This is a bold decision, by which I’m more than a little…

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Welcome back – The YamYam returns…

  Just a quick note to point out that popular local news and opinion site, The YamYam has returned. Thanks in no small part to the dedicated work of Mark Blackstock, the curator, @Hapdaniel a real live web wizard and Tim Brown, ace net developer, the site has been wonderfully and spectacularly automated. Once again,…

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Somewhere, in the distance…

Today is the last day of that wonderful Walsall institution, The YamYam. Yes, I’m afraid that the site that was instrumental and continual in support for The Brownhills Blog, is being mothballed as Mark, the chap behind this king of local news sites, is knackered after two years of producing a daily wonder with little…

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Turn, turn, turn…

Something odd is happening at the moment. I’m not sure quite what’s going on, but it’s very interesting and I think it might be positive. It seems the Cabinet – those leading Walsall Council – have become aware of the adverse publicity they seem to be creating out here in cyberspace. Normally exhibiting the sensitivity…

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Hard Times

    Walsall Council leader Mike ‘Blofeld’ Bird, Councillor for Pheasey Park Farm, has been around Walsall politics for a very long time. Over the years, I’ve become inured to the utter absurdity of many of the things he says. From ludicrously and unselfconciously bigging up his monetary value to the denizens of Walsall, to…

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Birmingham Mail – Tesco abandons plans to pull down a senior citizens’ club

Noticed this article today on the excellent Walsall news site, The YamYam – for once it seems the Birmingham Mail (no longer ‘evening’ you’ll note) have stolen a bit of a march on the Express & Star. It’s a two-page article, don’t forget to click through to the second page. I’m intrigued by the comment…

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The Payne Barrier

Please excuse me a little indulgence today. I’m going to break away from the usual stuff I do and talk a bit about blogging and freedom of speech, because something has happened in the local blog community that’s really irritated me, and what’s more, it seems to be a component of a larger trend. I’m…

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Shot down

On Friday, 30th July 2010, six days after publishing an alarmist, flawed and shoddy scare story about Lichfield Road in Brownhills being ‘gun-plagued’, subsequently proven utterly wrong by West Midlands Police, the Walsall edition of the Express & Star contained this remarkable piece of journalistic humbug. Note that it doesn’t appear on line, whereas the original,…

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West Midlands Police respond to ‘Alarmist’ gun crime story

This morning, 29th July 2010, regular reader and helpful sort Roger Jones – @ziksby on twatter – supplied this comment in response to my ‘Shot in the foot‘ post, which was attempting to locate the truth behind an unpleasant, sensationalist and seemingly inaccurate article about levels of gun crime in the Express & Star. It…

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Shot in the foot

On Saturday, 24th July 2010, the Walsall Edition of the Express & Star ran a story that really annoyed me. The story also appeared online at the same time – you can see a screenshot of the story below in case it should ever be taken down. It’s quite the most ridiculous item I’ve ever…

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Bumbledom humbug

They certainly don’t like it up ’em, as Corporal Jones used to say. I noted with some amusement, but mostly disgust, that since the Express & Star was now taking it’s crusade against all things public-sector to publishing local authority councillor allowances, Walsall’s illustrious cabinet had sprung up in defence of their own generous handouts….

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The Walsall Council reality distortion field

First up, sorry for the lack of updates this week, work has kept me away from the blog, a situation that will be resolved soon. However, in the course of my web browsing recently, there have been a few gems tucked away in the blogs and local media you may not have noticed. First up,…

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Brownhills Senior Citizens Centre : The Tesco Chainstore Massacre continues

The Walsall Advertiser letters page has been improving a tad of late. More often than not it’s just the soapbox for tedious blowhards like Ian Payne. Just lately there has been some excellent correspondence on the subject of Brownhills Tesco development and the dismay caused in the community by the plans to demolish the Senior Citizen’s…

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Very little helps

It’s been a while since I first posted that the application had been submitted for the new Tesco store in Brownhills. Since approval of the scheme can be viewed as inevitable, there would seem to be little point in further comment on the matter. However, there’s some stuff in this sellout that is really beginning…

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It’s been a funny old year

I’ve been debating whether to mention this or not, but I guess I ought to really, The Brownhills Blog was a year old last week. To be perfectly honest, I’m quite surprised it survived the first couple of months, and totally bewildered that it’s still going today. I’ve delved into the genesis of this rambling…

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Vote, vote, vote.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ll have noticed that there’s an election afoot today. Actually, there’s two; both parliamentary and local council elections are being held to decide both national and local government. Who we elect today will have a profound effect on our lives for some time to come, so it’s worth…

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Welcome to Tescotown

Whilst mooching back from work today, I noticed a planning application tied to a lamppost in Silver Street, Brownhills. Reading it, I note it’s for a new Tesco development in Brownhills town centre. I haven’t had time to go through it in detail yet – the application (reference 10/0375/FL) was submitted on the 31st March…

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Railroad wagon

This is a warning. What follows is a verbatim press release from the grey Lubyanka that is Walsall Civic Centre. Anyone who is currently drinking any kind of beverage may wish to take a few seconds to swallow and place their cup somewhere safe. What you’re about to read may well make you splutter… Walsall…

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Reality bites

I noted this evening with sadness but no surprise that both the Express & Star and the YamYam continue to ponder over the fate of Brownhills market, now undoubtedly in the death throes, pretty much like the town itself. What I was not prepared for, however, was the shock that jarred my not indelicate sensibilities…

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Supermarket sweep

It has become evident over the last few months that some shuffling of position has been going on over the retail future of Brownhills town centre. There have been a couple of articles in the local press about how Tesco were hoping to submit revised plans for their apparently utopian new retail facility, but nothing…

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I’d just like to say…

I wish all you readers out there a merry Christmas and a very happy, prosperous and peaceful 2010. When I started this blog back in May, I thought nobody would read it, much less be engaged by anything I had to say. I’m absolutely amazed to find that there’s an enthusiastic, switched-on, opinionated and somewhat…

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Another cracking article by the Plastic Hippo…

Anyone who’s been reading this blog for some time will be aware of the Plastic Hippo – often outrageously funny, witheringly forthright and highly knowledgeable about Walsall politics, he often comments on articles here. Well, there’s a new article up over at the YamYam in which the Hippo dissects the recent budget cuts and wheeler dealing…

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The Lichfield Blog are very, very nice people…

That excellent news site for our Staffordshire cousins ‘The Lichfield Blog‘ very kindly asked me a week or so ago if I’d guest on their esteemed organ by writing a companion piece to my  post about the South Staffordshire Railway, ‘Train in vain’. In it, I try to examine the view of rail reopening from…

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When you’re savaged by a dead duck

When I started Brownhills Blog, I had a respectful, fairly noble, rose-tinted view of the local printed media. I love reading local newspapers – if I’m out and about, away from home in an alien town with time on my hands, I always go to the trouble of buying and reading the local paper for…

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