**UPDATE*** 11th September

There are still places left in the Free Computer First Steps course. Do you or someone you know want to gain more confidence using IT? Or learn how to access the internet or use Word? Ask at Reception of Stone Hall or give them a ring. The course runs Monday 12.30 to 2.30pm and 6.30pm to 8.30pm and Wednesday 3.30pm to 5.30pm (Unfortunately there is no disabled access to this course).

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Acocks Green’s Adult Education Centre has a wide array of courses to make the most of this September. Whether you want to learn something for fun, get more out of life, or gain an important qualification to help your job prospects, you may well find a suitable course in Acocks Green, or at one of the many other Adult Education Centres across the city.

Stone Hall Adult Education Centre, Warwick Road, Acocks Green

There are day time and evening courses, from improving your English and Maths, learning how to use a computer, singing, clothes making, British Sign Language, computerised accounts and LOTS more.  Some courses are free of charge, or if you are in receipt of certain benefits you might not have to pay. The full programme of classes is here.  You can enrol for most courses on line, on the phone: 0121 303 4318, or at the centres in person from Monday 1st September to Saturday 13th September. The usual advice is that if possible, turn up at the time of the class you are interested in. At these times you can usually get to meet the tutor. From September you can also phone Stone Hall Centre directly on: 0121 464 9150 Or you can call into Acocks Green Library to pick up the full programmed of Adult Education Courses across the city.   Learning something new cchange your life (in a good way)!

The Fleet and Waste Team for our area will be at the Ward Committee Meeting on Wed 10th September – 7pm, Acocks Green Library to explain the new bin collection service and answer any questions you may have, so go along to find out more.


Watch this new video made by local school children:




From November our recycling and rubbish collections are changing. The council has recently been posting out information about the new wheelie bins.  They will be delivered from October if your household has been deemed appropriate, having received a ‘Green Card’.  Each suitable household will receive two wheelie bins, one for household rubbish and one, with separate compartments for recycling.

Wheelie Bin Deliveries will start from the end of September for up to 8 weeks for all suitable (green card)  households.  Each household will have 2 wheelie bins, (unless a request has been received for a second recycling bin from larger households) . Each bin will be fitted with a microchip that will be associated with the property address.  Each bin will also be marked with an address label that states the house number to which it was delivered. An information pack will also be provided, including a collection time calendar, bin use instructions and information about the green waste bin collection service. New bins will be sealed with a tape which will remind residents not to put the new wheelie bins out before the start of the scheduled collection times, as shown on your calendar.

Large Households – If your household consists of 6 or more people then if you wish you can also apply for a larger household rubbish wheelie bin and an additional recycling bin. You must however contact the council by Tuesday 2nd September to put this additional request in. You can complete the form at the website:  www.birmingham.gov.uk/wheeliebins or phone them on 0121 303 1112 (Mon to Friday, 9am-5pm)

Collection of old bins and recycle boxes  – a date is to be arranged for the collection of your old dustbins and recycling boxes.  Alternatively, residents can keep their old bins/boxes or take them for disposal at the Household Recycling Centres.

Start of Wheelie Bin collections –  This will commence from 24th November 2014

Possible Change of Delivery Day – Because of the major changes to the service, there may be changes to your current collection day. You will be informed if this is the case when the bins are delivered.

Non Wheelie Bin Properties –  If you should receive a ‘red card’ which informs that your property is not suitable for wheelie bins there will be no change – you will remain  and continue with black-bags/recycling boxes.
-Blocks of high-rise flats will not receive a card. These properties are already on communal collection services with large containers and they will remain unchanged.
-Houses in Multiple Occupation will receive an information leaflet which informs of what can / cannot go into each of their bins.  There is currently a mix of collection services at such properties and the opportunity will be taken to standardise these as a communal collection service for both rubbish and recycling wherever possible. This will be carried out  from September, separate from the main assessment and delivery of new wheelie bins. . Blocks of flats comprising 4-8 properties will also receive an information leaflet which informs them likewise. As these also have mix of services and the opportunity is being taken to standardise these on a communal collection service for both rubbish and recycling. This will be carried out on a bespoke basis during the autumn.

Don’t forget more information can be found at www.birmingham.gov.uk/wheeliebins


If you want to encourage the kids to read more then this is the time – the Summer Reading Challenge is taking place at libraries across the country including Acocks Green Library. Children aged 4 to 11 are invited to sign up to the challenge which involves reading 6 books over the school holidays and writing reviews. Stickers and rewards are given out free along the way. Its a great opportunity to be part of a national club of reading and it’s all free and on our doorstep.


To check details of opening times click on links below:

Acocks Green Library

South Yardley Library

Many locals and people passing through the village may have been struck by the display of whistles on the central island in Acocks Green. Yes they are whistles! A floral display was designed and produced by Birmingham City Council for this year’s entry into the Chelsea Flower Show. The design represented the contribution that Birmingham made to the First World War. As it is the centenary of the beginning of the WWI, it was felt this would be a poignant display. The whistles were used by advancing troops as a signal to their fellow soldiers. Acme Whistles are still made in Birmingham and have a long history, including being used on the Titanic and are the whistle of choice for football referees.

The Acme Whistle Display

The Acme Whistle Display

Also included in the orginal display were other remembrances of the First World War – including a BSA folding bicycle, a train that carried the troops to the war, a biplane, horses, carrier pigeons and dogs, all of  which played vital roles in the war effort. The different elements have now been separated and many appear in the current Birmingham City Centre’s floral trail. We are lucky in Acocks Green to have part of this award-winning and poignant display.

The whistles were in place just in time for the Village in Bloom judgement day on Tuesday 15th July. So the Bloom team were delighted to have this addition to their work around the village. To read more about Acocks Green Village in Bloom click here

Click on images below, to enlarge

There are also lots more activities around Birmingham during the school holidays, many of which are free. A Family Daysaver costs £8 on the bus, (Up to 2 adults and 4 Children).

Click the link to see a full list of activities around Birmingham:  Fun in Brum

Thanks to Fran Lee for this uplifting news story -

Some of  the members of The Acocks Green Village in Bloom team had been looking after the War Memorial in front of our library since 2007 and this has been carried on with even more gusto since Acocks Green  entered into the Urban Category of Britain in Bloom in 2012. To echo the poppies of Flanders Fields, the garden here was planted with mainly shrubs and perennials which flowered red, backed up in Summer with annuals again which flowered red.

When gardening here, it was noticed that some of the paving when damaged had been replaced with concrete. Some thought was put into this problem and it was decided that as it was 2014, the centenary of the outbreak of the Great War, something ought to be done to rectify this problem, preferably by re-paving the area in its entirety.  It had to be this year. The Bloom team approached E.H. Smith, a local builders’ merchant to see if they would supply the pavers to us as they had provided bricks for the Orchard created last year.  To our joy, they agreed.


Stewart Stacey, the local councillor who serves as a Cabinet Member on Birmingham City Council, spoke to Acivico the company which sources the contractors for council premises and again they came to the rescue and found a contractor, Kendrick Construction who agreed to lay the pavers.  It all happened in the blink of an eye at the end of June.  As promised, Coleman & Company, Demolition Contractors appeared with their skip one morning and the contractors worked until 9 p.m. to get the pavers laid on the same day which meant that no prolonged inconvenience was caused as this area provides access for wheelchair and pushchair users.

We did not forget!

Fran Lee
Co-ordinator – Acocks Green Village in Bloom



At the end of June, Swansong presented another enjoyable and cultured evening of music in the decorative and historical surroundings of St Marys.

The audience of around 60 people were entertained by talented musicians Sally Minchin on violin and Rich Hughes on piano. The programme offered great variety; the first half featuring classical pieces by Grieg, Debussy and Elgar and interesting contrasts such as Saint-Saens Danse Macabre and the haunting Theme from Schindler’s List by  John Williams.

After a break for refreshments the duo presented some wonderful swing tunes, influenced by the legendary Stephane Grappelli, including Cole Porter’s  Anything Goes and My Funny Valentine by Rodgers and Hart.

The Swansong concerts are always a pleasure and everyone is welcome.  Admission is free but there is a collection at the end of the evening to show our appreciation for the musicians.

The next concert is Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater and other Italian masterpieces On Tuesday 16th September at 7.30pm.  An evening of classical music in beautiful surroundings, come and enjoy a cultured evening here in Acocks Green.




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