Clean Up and Tidy Morning on the Grand Union Canal – This Sunday

We are lucky here in Acocks Green to have a stretch of the Grand Union Canal enhancing our local environment. The canal adds to the local heritage and offers humans and wildlife an oasis of calm. With the added greenery of Westley Vale Millennium Green beside the canal, you can easily forget you are in Birmingham at all!


This Sunday we are having our fourth working morning with the Canals and Rivers Trust as part of the ‘Adopt a Stretch of Canal’ event and all locals are welcome to come along and help. Jobs include litter picking, cutting back branches and painting railings.

All locals are most welcome to come along and help improve our waterway for ourselves and the wildlife. All equipment is provided, just wear sensible shoes.

Meet at the old Vineries Bridge on Woodcock Lane at 10am – See you there!

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New Community Choir in Acocks Green

This looks like a pleasant distraction from the longer nights, cold weather and Sunday evening blues!  Everyone knows that singing lifts your spirits. All the information below, £2.50 per session or termly rate.

Kimichi Chamber Choir Poster jpeg

I love to hear a choir. I love the humanity…to see the faces of real people devoting themselves to a piece of music. I like the teamwork. It makes me feel optimistic about the human race when I see them cooperating like that.
Paul McCartney (born 1942); Singer/songwriter

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Heritage Week come to Acocks Green

On Wednesday, as part of National Heritage Week, Acocks Green was graced by a visit from the Ikon Gallery Canal Boat and activities for local people to enjoy on Westley Vale Millennium Green. There were guided walks around Westley Vale, blackberry-picking, clay modelling, singing round the campfire and charcoal-sketching. Click on the pictures below to see them as a slideshow.

On board the boat there were other creative workshops. Local volunteers were treated to a boat trip along the Grand Union and, fortunately, the forecasted heavy rain never materialised. Lots of locals came along and took advantage of the opportunity to be creative on their doorstep.

Thanks to all those involved who helped to make this special creative event happen.

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********Acocks Gold********

What fantastic news for Acocks Green! Thanks to all those who have played a part in helping achieve this award. Here is what Fran the co-coordinator had to say:

Did I hear right?  I went up on stage to receive our award and could not believe it when the chairman said Acocks Green has been awarded ‘Gold’ in the Britain in Bloom campaign.’  What a great team effort from our volunteers, the council with the added bonus of all the wonderful planters and the BID.  It really does focus people’s efforts on putting things right.  Did anyone notice all the improvements made apart from the Smart Route which helped us to secure this coveted award?

Fran Lee receiving the Gold Award on behalf of Acocks Green Village in Bloom Project

Fran Lee receiving the Gold Award on behalf of Acocks Green Village in Bloom Project

You can find out lots more about the Village in Bloom project by clicking on the page:
Acocks Green Village in Bloom

Or to find out more about helping or donating then contact us on this website or
Fran Lee – Co-ordinator – Acocks Green Village in Bloom.

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Allotments Get a New Environmentally-Friendly Loo

Thanks to a grant form the Big Lottery Fund, Wharfland Allotments in Acocks Green have installed the first toilet on the site in it’s 110 year existence.

The odourless eco-friendly toilet uses no water or electricity,  is solar powered and produces useful compost from waste.

Allotment Holders are proud of their new loo.

Allotment Holders are proud of their new loo.

Stephen Cox, the Treasurer of South Yardley Allotments Society who manage the site, said

“ It’s been a long wait but now the many ladies and families who rent plots have the convenience of a toilet on site. It has disabled access too, opening the site to the whole community for Open Days in the future, allowing us to offer plots to local schools and care homes.”

South Yardley Allotments Society manages two sites – Clay Lane and Wharfland and can be contacted via their website you are interested in renting one of the available plots find out more by visiting their website.

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Stone Hall Enrolment Week – Mon 7th to Sat 12th September 2015

Its that time of year again to think about taking advantage of the Adult Education opportunities available in our area. English, Maths and beginner Computer courses are free and depending on your personal circumstances other courses may be free too.

Here is the website that has all the information you need for courses across the city, or pick up the directory at the  library: Enrolment starts next week when Stone Hall will reopen. You can also phone the information line for more information – 0121 303 4318

As well as the basic courses there are a variety of courses for pleasure or to learn a new skill –  for example: clothes-making, acoustic guitar playing, learning Spanish or learning to sing. There are a good choice of courses at Stone Hall in Acocks Green and a huge variety across the many Adult Education Centres throughout the city.

Stone Hall Adult Education Centre, Warwick Rd.

Stone Hall Adult Education Centre, Warwick Rd.

The Acocks Green Neighbourhood Forum website is often found by people searching for courses locally and by typing ‘Stone Hall’ into the search engine, so it seems only right that we spread the word and help promote the worthy message of education and self-improvement.

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Greening of the Green – The Smart Route – Trees and Planters

Here’s the news that many people have been waiting for.  Our Village in Bloom team has been advised of the details of the trees and shrubs which are going to planted on the ‘Smart Route.’ 17 trees will be planted directly in the ground. Due to a large underground gas pipe extending from Station Road to Woodcock Lane 10 trees are to be planted in large containers and under planted with attractive shrubs.

Below is a plan of where the trees and shrubs are going to be located. It is very detailed, but if you are interested, click on the picture to see the specifics. TP indicates Tree Pit – this is where the trees are going to be put into the ground. PP indicates where the square containers are going to be placed with small trees and shrubs. SC is an indication of the planters which are already in place.

Detailed plan of tree and shrub planting on Acocks Green's Smart Route - Warwick Road.

Detailed plan of tree and shrub planting on Acocks Green’s Smart Route – Warwick Road.

The council officers have made some good choices and consulted the Bloom team on their preferences. The volunteers expressed a preference for blossom trees and its good so see that there will be several flowering cherry trees.

We won’t translate all the Latin names but to give you a flavour – Prunus s. ‘Sunset Boulevard‘  is a flowering Cherry.  There are also trees with a tulip shaped flower, a Silver Lime often known as Linden trees, which bears yellow flowers in June/July. Liquidambars worplesdon bears flowers in March/April and fruits in Autumn.

In the planters again we have shrubs and trees which will give us colourful leaves including the Photinia x f. ‘Red Robin’ a popular garden shrub. The Cornus has delicate leaves which when fallen reveal colourful stems in the winter. A real favourite with the Village in Bloom is  Magnolia Stellata – the Star Magnolia which has star like flowers in the Spring. Amongst the shrubs we will see the Woolly Willow and a Hebe with large blue flowers – good for attracting butterflies. Also the attractive garden favourite Euonymus. There is also Box and Spanish gorse. Salvia has pale blue flowers and is part of the sage family.

This excellent mix will provide not only visual interest throughout the year with colourful leaves and flowers and some of them have lovely scents. Most have been chosen for their drought tolerance and hardiness in public places. The trees will be underpinned to provide stability and we have been told that they will not have those unsightly wooden support poles.

The ‘official’ opening of the Smart Route is Wednesday 23rd September.  Tree planting always takes place in the winter months however and should commence in November/December.

Also the Bloom team will be having Bulb-Planting Sessions in October and November and creating new beds to give added WOW factor to our village. If you would like to come along and help on these popular projects, please contact:

Fran Lee – Co-ordinator – Acocks Green Village in Bloom
e.mail: Telephone: 0121 706 0076

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