Saturday’s #ArmsAroundBirmingham – the Litter pick that follows the whole of the no. 11 Bus Route has a slight change of timetable: The litter picking will take place around an hour earlier than first listed – This is the new approximate timetable. Come out and help on the Acocks Green stretch.
Every year Keep Britain Tidy work with community groups and individuals to do litter picks and tidy ups in a national campaign. Because of Covid the planned Great British Spring clean ups were postponed but now the campaign is back with a large scale litter pick – thanks to some enthusiastic volunteers and the Active Wellbeing Society. There are also two other Litter Picks organised. Read on!
The weekend of 19th and 20th September there is a litter pick that covers the whole of the no.11 Bus Route. A couple of volunteers are walking the whole route (27 miles!) and asking other groups and individuals to join them on their local stretch of the route. They will be in Acocks Green on Saturday afternoon (2.20pm to 3.15pm approx.) – see the timetable below. Email the co-ordinater if you would like to join in. See email address below:
Also if you just love the satisfaction of tidying up Acocks Green then on: Sunday 20th September Acocks Green Neighbourhood Forum are organising a litter pick around the Yardley Road and the many side roads. Meet outside the Great Western Pub at 10am. If you haven’t got equipment you can borrow some.
And last but not least Acocks Green Village in Bloom are organsing a village clean up on Sunday 27th September at 10am Equipment provided if you don’t have any and wear gloves. Hope to see you there, making a difference to your local community!
The gentle sloping meadow in Westley Vale Millennium Green was given its annual cut this week with local scythe-man Adam. To encourage the wild flowers to flourish it is important that the meadow is cut so that the flower seeds get a chance to germinate in the shorter grass and the dominant strong grasses and nettles don’t take over the meadow.
Scythe Man Adam
Gathering the Hay
Adam arrived by bicycle from Kings Heath with scythe strapped to his back. Local peasants came out in force to collect the hay and try their hand with the scythe, which to keep effective, has to be sharpened every 5 minutes or so.
It was was hot day and hard work but after a break for a ploughman’s lunch and a glass of ale the folks had soon cleared the meadow of hay and Adam was on his way back to the Heath from whence he came. Thank you Adam for working so hard! We’ll see you next year!
Think about the road you live on. Are there young trees that have been planted in the last year or two?
We have been enjoying the sunshine and warm weather, but we haven’t had much rain. All around Acocks Green and our city there are young street trees that are not getting enough water. Their roots have not had time to develop as much as the mature trees so they can easily die just because they don’t have enough water.
Trees are generally planted with a tube next to them in the ground so if the water goes down the tube it goes directly to the roots. You can’t do any harm by watering them, they will not get over-watered, but you could be a LIFE SAVER.
Young tree needing water
Save our trees!
The trees in Acocks Green Village in the large containers on Warwick Road also need water in this dry weather. Do you want Acocks Green to stay GREEN? If you live near a young tree please water it ASAP. Trees enhance roads and add value to properties. Birmingham is bidding to be a World Tree City – let’s show the world we love our trees.
Thanks to Taija for the photos. I know she is looking after the trees near her.
Acocks Green Neighbourhood Forum is a group of local volunteer residents who work with the council and organisations to for the good of the area. Normally we organise Public Meetings and a regular newsletter, but because of Covid-19 like so many other events, these have had to be temporarily cancelled.
However the Executive Committee have been meeting on Zoom and keeping in touch with activities and developments. So many people have pulled together and adapted in many ways to support people in the community who have needed help. Neighbours have got to know each other a little more and lots of people have discovered their neighbourhood a little better. Westley Vale Millennium Green has never been so busy on a summer evening, with people discovering this haven on their daily exercise. The quiet streets made the spring birdsong even more noticeable and uplifting.
Our Peaceful Place – Westley Vale Millennium Green
One local resident got up at the crack of dawn to record the Dawn Chorus at the Millennium Green. Here it an audio recording for you to enjoy:
The local shops have been such a useful resource to people who don’t want to venture into the bigger, busier shops. Also so many people locally work for the NHS or in a caring capacity and have gone beyond the call of duty in so many ways to support people through this pandemic.
As a community we need to continue to build on the positive connections we have made and find strength in our links with others.
If you wish to contact the Neighbourhood Forum and tell us something positive that has been a result of the lockdown then please get in touch and perhaps we can share some of your stories. Use the Contact Us link. Or if you wish to contact us on any other matter we will endeavour to respond.
On Sunday a team of volunteers planted up the majority of the 22 planters in Acocks Green village with a colourful array of bedding plants. Working individually (and keeping our social distance) a team of 7 worked tirelessly to put in the plants. In the afternoon Fran and Ged gave them a first good watering.
Fran waters the bedding plants
Do you live or work near one of these planters on Warwick Road? Could you ‘adopt’ one over the summer and water it every other day when it doesn’t rain significantly? Village in Bloom can supply a watering can if required.
Without help from the community, the regular watering of the 22 planters is a huge task with our volunteers carrying or pushing large tanks of water through the village. But if we can get lots of local people to help out, the task becomes a lot easier. If you can help you will be contributing to keeping Acocks Green looking colourful and floral throughout the summer.
Map of Planters in Acocks Green Village
If you would like to help please contact us by responding in the comments here or emailing the co-ordinator Fran Lee : firstname.lastname@example.org
Pete Paphides is a successful music journalist who grew up in Acocks Green. Over the years Pete has written for music papers, Time Out and The Times. He has interviewed many well known musicians including Prince and ABBA and now he has written a memoir about his childhood growing up in and around Acocks Green intertwined with his fascination with pop music and musicians of the 1970s and 80s. Broken Greek came out in March and is now a best seller.
Many people who live in our area will remember Pete’s parents, Greek Cypriots – Victoria and Chris. They ran two popular chip shops in Acocks Green – The Great Western opposite the Police Station (now Big Johns) and the Kingfisher (now Lincoln Fish Bar) on Lincoln Road. Pete went to Cottesbrooke Infants and Junior school and then on to Yardleys.
From Monday 4th May you can hear Pete reading from Broken Greek on Book of the Week on Radio 4 (9.45am). You will also be able to catch it on the BBC Sounds App.
In the book he talks a lot about little details of life growing up in suburban Birmingham, including school life, journeys on the no.11 bus and going to Preedys, Easy Listening and Woolworths to spend his pocket money on precious singles. He also reflects on being the child of immigrants and searching for his own identity through his love of British pop music.
Back in November the Village in Bloom Team, along with other volunteers, took part in a community bulb planting morning. Little did we know then what the future would hold. But amidst the upsetting turn of events and change of life as we know it.. the tulips and spring flowers have come through and lift the spirit of people passing through and walking through the village.
The completed Triabout with its colourful shrubbery and circular raised bed is a mass of colour with the beautiful variety of tulips. And last month daffodils brightened up the entrance into Birmingham.
The orchard with its mass of forget-me-nots and herb bed looks great
punctuated by the bright colours of tulips.
During this difficult and worrying time it is heartening to hear and see that so many people have come forward to help and support people who need it. The news is full of the stories of great sacrifice and hard work given by our key workers that keep our city going with vital services as well as health service staff who are doing amazing work
Locally there is a co-ordinated effort to support people who may need practical help. Or for those who are interested in volunteering to help:
The best way to contact them is by email:
call or text 07570 240716
You can call or leave a message for our Local Councillor Roger Harmer – 0121 451 3292
You may find other useful information on the Birmingham Voluntary Services Website
and of course the Government website.
There is lots of ways to keep entertained online whilst self-isolating including theatre productions, storytimes, and keep fit activities. A great place to look is the Active Wellbeing Society
And if you are lucky enough to have a garden or local green space and you can observe the strict social distancing rules then getting fresh air and exercise will definitely lift your spirits. REMEMBER KEEP 2 METRES FROM ANYONE YOU ENCOUNTER WHILST WALKING, FOR EVERYONE’S SAKE!