Thursday, 31 December 2009

HAPPY NEW YEAR

I would just like to take this opportunity to wish every one a HAPPY NEW YEAR.

Monday, 28 December 2009

OSCOTT NEEDS MORE GRIT BINS


We need more grit bins in this area which is why I am calling on the Transportation for some time to look again at the amount they have allotted to the Oscott Ward.
I have already asked for grit bins for a number of locations in Oscott, for example like the estate where Wideacre Drive is. This Council administration seem very reluctant to improve the situation regarding grit bin allocation but I am continuing to try to get them to take action.
If you have a suggestion where one should be put let me know and I will pass it on for you. We will then see what happens

Monday, 21 December 2009

GIVE A THOUGHT TO THE ELDERLY AT CHRISTMAS

While you are enjoying the festive season please give some thought to any elderly residents you know. With this bitter cold it is often difficult for them to get about, so why not ask if they need anything fetched from the shops or are they ok.

GIVE WILD LIFE A HELPING HAND THIS CHRISTMAS

This sudden cold snap can be disastrous for out wild life so why not try and help out.
With all the Christmas left overs you may well have just what our wild life needs.
Peanuts birds of cake, old apples and so on will all be snapped by wild birds at this time of year in this weather. (for further information look under the RSPB on the webb. Also if you own a bid bath break the ice to allow the birds to drink and bath.
Compliments of the season.

PLEASE DO NOT LET YOUR DOGS FOUL FOOTBALL PITCHES

I would like to ask dog owners who exercise there dogs on playing fields like Burford Road, Glenmead and Aldridge Road to ensure they keep their dogs under control clean up any dog mess left by their dogs. I have received a number of complaints about over exited digs and dog fouling on football pitches. Dog Warden are aware of these problems and can fine those who do not control their dogs.
There is room for every one on these open spaces with a bit of consideration

Saturday, 19 December 2009

EXPECT DELAYS FOR 12 MONTHS IF YOU USE THE ALDRIDGE ROAD BOARS HEAD JUNCTION

Due to repairs to the M6 motor way bridge over the Aldridge Road near the Boars Head Junction motorists may expect delays near there for the next year.
Work on the bride will start in the new year and as a result, there will be road lane narrowing and the loss of the small slip road (Aldridge road turning near the traffic lights at the Boars Head Junction.) There will also be a 20mph speed limit, at times, in place.
I will do what I can to try and ensure the contractor keep the inconvenience to motorists to a minimum.

COMPLIMENTS OF THE SEASON

I would Just like to wish Oscott Residents and any one who reads my blog all the very best for Christmas and the New Year.



If I can be of any assistance to you please contact me via Tel 303 2039 (messages)

Thursday, 17 December 2009

MORE JOBS FOR THE OSCOTT AREA.

The old P&O Container base on College Road is to be redeveloped a s a Car Auction facility.
Planning permission has been given for 2 auction rooms, a cafe, reception area and assorted offices to be built on the site. There will also be a large car storage area.
there will be around 260 new jobs created on the site and the Planning department at my request are negotiating with the owners British Car Auctions Limited to try and get as many people from the local area employed on this site as possible . We badly need more jobs for the people in this area and this could be a good way of finding some of them them.

Monday, 14 December 2009

A BETTER WAY TO SPEND A MILLION POUNDS

One of the most frustrating things about being a back bench Councillor for an outer city ward, is seeing money being thrown at City Centre projects.
I fairness parties across the Political Davide do have a habit of doing this. However at the current moment when things are tough world wide and economies are having to be made it is particularly annoying.
A recent example is the spending of the best part of a million pounds to have what is basically a large TV screen put up in Victoria square. It has taken two years of consultation to find out most of those people consulted, if they do want this screen? do not want it in Victoria square.
The current Council would have saved a lot of money if they had put this TV screen in say the Chamberlain square rather than the world renown and listed Victoria Square.
They could then have spent that million pounds on saving the Aldridge Road Day Centre and on many other useful initiatives for local people.

Saturday, 12 December 2009

A SLOW WAY FORWARD FOR ROAD SAFETY AROUND OUR SCHOOLS

At long last I have received responses to a number of emails asking what is happening to safeguard Oscott Children out side the Perry Beeches and Great Barr schools.
I have been campaigning for some time to make roads near these roads safer. A number of consultations are now going ahead with local resident and the schools. Unfortunately some objections have been made to proposals for safety measures around the schools and this are slowing up the process.
The good news is according to a senior Transportation department director
Vehicle Activated Speed Sign - Aldridge Road
They are proposing to erect a Vehicle Activate Speed sign on Aldridge Road. The sign has been ordered and is due to be installed in March 2010.
You may be assured Councillor Barbara Dring and I will do all I can to speed up the process.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

OSCOTT ELDERLY RESIDENTS GROUPS DOING WELL

I have managed to get along to both the Saint Marks Day Centre for the Elderly and to the Oscott Elderly Residents Groups meetings this week.
The Saint Marks Day Centre staff do a great job looking after their elderly charges and making sure they enjoy their dinner time meals. They also ensure there is plenty of things for them to do after their meals. It certanly helps to get elderly residents out of their homes.

The Oscott Elderly Residents Groups which is organised by Maureen Bynre and Friends is a monthly get together for older people in the area. Certainly when I manage to pop it they are having a lively time of a cup of tea and a cake. They always manage to ask me those difficult questions you would rather not answer. They also usually have a guest speaker on hand.
(This group meet every month at the 610 Community Centre. Please ring 464 1869 for details)

BOOTHS LANE THIS COUNCILS LACK OF ACTION




The Birmingham City Council have now decided not even to put warning signs at each end of the Non adopted section of Booths Lane depite its clearly dangerous condition.
Some years ago at my request when the Booths Lane was in poor condition they agreed to put up uneven carriage way road signs.
Now the condition of the carriage way has, despite warnings from Councillor Dring and myself, has been allowed to deteriorate to a dangerous condition.
This being the case I have been calling for warning signs to inform those users of especially those on two wheels and not knowing the area, of the potential danger of this part of Booths Lane.
With the current bad weather these signs are even more urgently needed.
Also because of the lack of action by the Birmingham City Council and the Sandwell City Council there are regular accidents on at the near by Queslett Road Nova Court junction area and the Police are having to divert traffic onto the potentially dangerous Booths Lane. This means more drivers who are not aware of the condition of the unadopted section of Booths Lane may have accident.
THE COUNCIL SHOULD REPAIR THE DAMAGED CARRIAGE WAY AND PASS ON THE BILL TO THE OWNER OF THE LAND OR ADOPT THE ROAD THEM SELVES. THE VERY LEAST THEY SHOULD DO IS PUT UP WARNING SIGNS. THEY ARE RESPOSIBLE FOR THE SAFETY OF THOSE DRIVING THROUGH OSCOTT.

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

IMPROVEMENTS TO THE ALDRIDGE ROAD SLIP ROAD NEAR BIRDBROOK ROAD.


At long last the Birmingham City Council have started to carry our work requested by Councillor Barbara Dring and myself some time ago and are widening the Aldridge Road to Birdbrook Road slip Road. They are creating a number of parking bays by reducing the size of the half island at this junction. This will not create any extra parking but it will help ease the problems motorists face trying to negotiate that junction.
The James Watt College have now also presented their Planning application for 150 extra car spaces on their campas to the Council and this should be looked into over the next few months.

DO NOT PARK ON DISABLED BAYS.

one of the things which came up at the recent ORG public meeting was the concern that disabled bays marked on carriage ways are being used by non disabled drivers.
This is a sign of the times it seems where some drivers no longer seem to care where they park and who they make life difficult for.
Disabled bays are meant for disabled people who have problems walking and need to for example park closely to shops and Dr's. These disabled drivers should have blue badges to identify their disability needs.
I would call on all drivers not to park on disabled bays and give disabled drivers respect

Friday, 4 December 2009

PUBLIC MEETING TOMORROW SAT 5th

The Oscott Residents Groups have asked me to let people know there is a ORG public meeting tomorrow at the 610 Community Centre (10.45am). There will be a chance chat with members of the ORG. Khalid Mahmood MP and local Councillors have been invited to a Q and A session.
There will also be "free" mince pies.

Thursday, 3 December 2009

DUNEDIN ROAD REPAIRS TO START SOON

I have just learnt that at long last work is to start on the pavements in Dunedin Road. There will be 8 weeks of major pavement reconstruction work beginning in early January.
I have been campaigning along with Councillor Barbara Dring and local residents for some years to get the pavements and carriage ways repaired in Dunedin Road and this is just the start of things.
Later this year the carriage ways is also expected to have major work carried out on it. Councillor Dring and I will be keeping the pressure on the Transportation department to get on and do this work as soon as possible. The work is urgently needed give the very poor state of the carriage way.
We have also not forgotten the other roads in the area with very poor carriage ways and we will keep bringing these to the attention of the Transportation department to.

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

BOOTHS LANE SOMETHING NEEDS TO BE DONE

Booths Lane which now resembles a bad third world dirt track is again in an appalling state. It is yet again full of pot holes and trenches.
It would appear that the Council are not prepared to do anything about it because of lack of funds. (Councillor Barbara Dring and I will continue the battle.)
The owner appears to have given up on the carriage way which leaves us in the situation we are in.
As an interim measure I am (with the agreement of the Oscott Ward Committee) calling on the Council to a least have signs erected warning the unwary of the potential dangers condition of the road.
WE will have to see if the Council will take action regarding this request.

Monday, 30 November 2009

FRIENDS OF THE QUESLETT NATRE RESERVE ACTIVITY DAY GOES AHEAD DESPITE THE WEATHER.

I would just like to thank those members of the Friends of the Queslett Nature Reserve who have helped out on the reserve over the last 12 months and all those members who have given their support. I thing the way the reserve has improved over that period is testament to your efforts.
The path ways are much clearer now, many trees and bushes have been planted and the reserve is much tidier.
I would also like to thank those members who braved the conditions on Saturday
to plant trees, prune back bushes and litter pick. It was a miserable day but it was a job well worth doing.
Any one wanting to join the FQNR please ring 360 6486 for details

Councillor Keith Linnecor
Chair
FQNR

Saturday, 28 November 2009

JEAN BAKERS SURPRISE PARTY


Both Councillor Barbara Dring and I were delighted to be asked as guests to a surprise birthday party for Jean Baker being held by the Oscott North Neighbourhood Forum.
I have known Jean for many years and she has worked tirelessly to help her local community.
If you have nor heard of her that is part of her charm. She works behind the scenes with no fuss and not craving publicity.
It was a smashing party with Friends and relatives present. Jean was taken by complete surprise.
Jean has been ill recently and I am sure every one who knows her wishes her all the best.

Thursday, 26 November 2009

SLOW PROGRESS FOR THE QUESLETT ROAD

At long last some joint discussion regarding the Queslett Road are to take place between senior officers from the Sandwell and Birmingham City Council. see the note I received below which I received from Sandwell Councils Transportation engineer.

"With regards your concerns about road safety on this stretch of the Queslett Road I can advise you that I am meeting the- Senior Projects Leader Transportation Studies - of the City Council in the next week or so to discuss this matter."


Lets just hope it moves beyond mere discussions. I will be keeping up the pressure.

FREE "DOGGY BAGS NOW AT THE KINGSTANDING LIBRARY

Following my intervention (see post 13th Nov) Free doggy bags have now arrived at the Kingstanding Library.
If you need any bags please just pop in and ask.

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

DONT DUMP GAS BOTTLES


I have noticed recently that Gas containers seem to be being dumped willy nilly all over the place. This has potentially dangerous consequences as they may leak.
If you want to get rid of a gas bottle there should be the owners names and phone number on the side AND THEY SHOULD COLLECT THE BOTTLE. You can also take them to the Holford Drive salvage department.
If you know of a dumped gas bottle let me know by ringing 360 6486.

Monday, 23 November 2009

YET ANOTHER ACCIDENT ON THE QUESLETT ROAD

The now notorious accident black spot on the Queslett opposite the Nova Court junction has claimed yet another written of car.
An eyewitness on this occasion informed me in his opinion this time it was more down to the careless way cones were left on the carriage way than anything else. It was his view that because signs were not visible the unlucky car owner was forced to pull to one side of the carriage way where he lost control and hit a fence. The cones had been there for some time for no apparant readon.?
I am sure we will get the same old excuses from Sandwell Council and unless the driver was injured they will not even note it in their records. When will this stretch of road be safe for its users?

Friday, 20 November 2009

ACIVITY DAY PLANNED FOR QUESLETT NATURE RESERVE

There will be an activity day on the Quslett Nature Reserve which will take place on the 28th Nov at 11.30am. The meeting place will be the Ashworth Road entrance.
There will be tree planting, pruning work and litter picking.
Please come prepared for the weather and wear stout shoes.
For more details please ring 360 6486

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

HAWTHORN ROAD LIGHTS SWITCH ON


I was delighted to be asked to present the Hawthorn Traders Association best Christmas shop window award today. Children from the Hawthorn Road Junior school acted as impartial judges and chose Miles pet supplies as the winner.
It was I am told a close run thing but Miles Pet shop who have been on the Hawthorn Road for generations were ruled the worthy winners.
The owner Mr Miles than had the honour of switching on the Hawthorn Road Christmas lights.
I would like to say well done to all those at todayS switch on including Father Christmas, traders , children and other shoppers. I would in particular like to thank the team led by Jeanette Hart for collecting funds for the Christmas lights.

AGE CONCERN'S KETTLEHOUSE GROUP

The Age Concern Kettlehouse Group is a group of elderly Oscott residents who meet up with the help of Age Concern every Thursday ( 2pm at the Emanuel Church) to carry out a range of activities from having a cup of tea together to going on trips. (I pop in from time to time to see if any one has any problems I can help with.)
For example their December itinerary is as follows.
Decembers 3rd. A tea and chat session.
Decembers 10th A trip to the Dudley Concert hall for a "Forces sweethearts Concert (£13)
December 17th A Christmas party at the Emanuel Church fun and games music and so on.
No meeting December 24th or 31st
January 7 a quiz

For more details ring Age Concern 358 0309

Saturday, 14 November 2009

HAWTHORN ROAD XMAS LIGHTS GO ON WEDNESDAY

Thanks to the great efforts of Jeanette Hart, Nicki, Ken and other Hawthorn Road Traders Association members collecting money and holding raffles the Hawthorn Road Christmas lights will once again be tuned this year. The lights will be " turned on by Father Christmas" who is making a special one off appearance on Wednesday afternoon between 3.30pm and 6pm.
I am glad to say the Oscott Ward Committee has played its part making a donation to this worthy cause and once again may I say well done to all those involved.

Friday, 13 November 2009

DOG MESS TO INCREASE ON OUR STREETS

I have been told by the Councils Animal Welfare Section that dog fouling bags are to no longer be given out on request to residents because of cost restraints (we call them cuts in service). This is a great shame as it will clearly lead to an increase in dog mess on our streets.
This measure when taken with other like the reduction in the Free Bulky Waste Service are without doubt going to mean dirtier streets in the long term in Oscott.
However I have been assured following my request that "doggy bags" will be given to the Kingstanding Library and local neighbourhood offices for residents to request. Lets hope they do not put a stop on this.

Thursday, 12 November 2009

ALDRIDGE ROAD DAY CENTRE TO CLOSE SOON

It was with great sadness I carried out my last visit as a Councillor to the Aldridge Road Day Centre. Thanks to the current Council Administrations policies on day centres this day Centre will now close down on the 18th of December.
I have paid numerous visits to the Aldridge Road day Centre (this is a day centre which cares for a large number of adults with special needs) both formally and informally. I have always found that the staff take tremendous care of their clients and their dedication is superb. Even with the fast approaching closure of the centre you can see how much the staff care and how much the users of the Centre get out of that care and the facilities the centre provide.
I will continue to believe the site should have been kept and the range of facilitates extended to other disabled groups. It is nothing short of a disgrace that this centre is closing.

On a brighter note I also visited the Kings Lodge Centre in Oscott where young adults with various problems are prepared for the out side world. These youngsters have excellent self contained accommodation and are well supervised in a semi independent way by a dedicated well motivated team of care workers .

JAMES WATT COLLEGE PARKING PROBLEMS UPDATE




This is intended to be another update on the parking problems in the area caused by the James Watt College.
At my request Mr Hill a spokes person from the James Watt College attended last nights Oscott Ward Advisory Board meeting, where he informed, Community representatives and your 3 local Councillors about the latest proposals from the college.
In summary these are.
To create an extra 150 car spaces on the college site by next March. This will be done by demolishing the old caretaker’s house. Using the old brick layer yard in the college grounds and by using an area of grass land near the college.
It is also the college’s intention to open up a new access point for vehicle using the site.
With regards to the longer term future of the site. The College still intends to move to the Old Dairy site on the Aldridge Road. The proposed move is on hold for 3 years and has not been cancelled.

Planning permission is still to be finalised, but the college are confident they will be successful given the reaction they have received from the Planning department. There are still issues to be finalised such as the access to the college and new landscaping requirements.

There will be an opportunity to have an early look at a plan indicating the proposals, at the Oscott Ward Committee, which will be chaired by Councillor Barbara Dring. This meeting will take place on Wednesday 2nd December at the 610 Community Centre Kingstanding Road. The time of the meeting will be 7pm.

If you would like any further information please give me a ring on 360 6486

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

BIRMINGHAM AND SANDWELL COUNCIL'S IN COMPLETE CONFUSION WHATS NEW?

I am beginning not for the first time to consider both the Birmingham City Council and the Sandwell City Council either are to concerned about footing the bill for road safety measures on the Queslett Road or are to busy point scoring off each other to do anything.

I have now received an email from a senior officer of the Birmingham City Council saying the following.


"Since the meeting between Sandwell and Birmingham officers, we have had some telephone discussions and have considered the current traffic situation. "

If you go back 2 Posts you will clearly see Sandwell are saying there has been no responce from the Birmingham Council since their last meeting with them on April the 8th.

I have pointed this out to both Council Transportation departments and mildly suggested they get their heads together sit round a table and sort this problem out the sooner the better.


Also see posts re 31st Oct

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

PERRY COMMON LIBRARY UPDATE

Sadly it would appear that there have been yet more delays with regards to work starting on the Perry Common Library. It is now expected that work will begin on this listed building at the start of the new year with a finish date in late April.
This is not clearly a satisfactory state of affairs especially if like me you were a regular user of this library.
We can see by the way the current Council Administration is making heavy weather of their expensive proposed new 19 million Central library nothing goes to plan.
As you make expect I am regularly in touch with the Senior Librarian for the area and have pestered the various planning officials to try and speed things up. I will continue to do so.
I just wish this Council would pump some more money into all our libraries to help keep them better maintained and supplied with books?

BIRMINGHAM AND SANDWELL COUNCILS DODGING AND DIVING NOT TO ACCEPT REPOSIBILITY FOR ROAD SAFETY ON THE QUESLETT ROAD


I am taking the unusual step of publishing the letter below to give you some idea of how Birmingham and Sandwell Councils are dodging their duty to introduce road safety measures to the Queslett road in my view.

Councillor Keith Linnecor
I am in receipt of your email of 31 October 2009 urging Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council to work with Birmingham City Council to tackle road safety on the A4041 Queslett Road in the vicinity of the M6 over bridge.
I can advise that officers of Sandwell MBC met with representatives of Birmingham City Council on 8 April 2009 to discuss a proposal worked up to detail design for introducing traffic signals at the junction known locally as 'Nova Court'.
At that meeting Sandwell raised a number of questions about the justification for introduction of traffic signals at this location.
Sandwell Council requested Birmingham City Council to re-examine the traffic and accident data and come back to us with a justification for the need for traffic signals at this location.
To date we have received no response from the City Council.
I can assure you that Sandwell Council is committed to reducing accidents on our roads and is more than happy to work with officers of the City Council to find proportionate, cost effective and sustainable road safety solutions on our shared boundary roads.


This has come from Nigel Wilkins the Sandwell Councils Group Transportation Engineer.

For the umpteenth time I am calling on both Birmingham and Sandwell Council to stop point scoring and get together to resolve this issue.

Monday, 9 November 2009

ANOTHER WALK ABOUT ANOTHER DAY?

I have just finished analysing the results of a walk about I carried out in Thornbridge Avenue on Friday. It is clear to me that yet again residents are fed up with speeding vehicles and anti social behavior. Residents also want to see new trees replacing ones that were removed and are disgusted that the Council have not introduced a traffic light to the Greenholm Road. Thornbridge Avenue, Aldridge Road junction. How many more accidents are the Council prepared to see at this junction before they take action.

THE WAY FORWARD OR THE WAY BACK?

It is not that often I agree with Conservative Councillors, but I have to say having read a number their scathing remarks about the capability of over paid consultants who are looking at revamping the Councils Forward news paper, for once I do.
Thousands of pounds are being spent by the current Conservative/ Liberal Alliance Council on revamping the Forward and as far as I can tell they are going to make it even worse. It is a great shame they do not spend this much needed money to prevent front line service cuts.

Saturday, 7 November 2009

CAN YOU HELP PREVENT SPEEDING?

The Oscott Ward Committee with the agreement and advice of the Oscott Ward Advisory Board, has helped fund the new Community Speed Watch initiative.
This is where local resident work with the Police and patrol speeding hot spots in the area with equipment to check the speed traffic using certain roads.
Cars spotted speeding will initially be sent a warning letter and should they be spotted speeding again further action may be considered.
I am currently putting together a list of roads where speeding is a problem and to help the Police I am looking for potential resident volunteers who would like to become involved.
It is hoped that this initiative will be up and running by the early spring.
If you would like more details please give me a ring on 360 6486.

WEAR YOUR POPPY WITH PRIDE

I have noticed there does not appear to be as many people wearing Poppies as usual at the moment. I hope there will be a late surge and lots more people will buy and wear one over the weekend.
I would like to thank all those who work to help those who have given so much for this country.
Lets all wear our Poppies with Pride and give thought to those who have made such sacrifices for us all.

MORE ROADS TO BE RESURFACED IN OSCOTT

After years of comparative inactivity the Birmingham City Councils Transportation department have started to resurface roads in Oscott. Now the more cynical amongst us may say it is about time to.
Burnham Road ,Oscott School Lane and Part of Birdbrook Road have already been done and in the pipe line are Dunedin Road, Crestwood Drice and Wideacre Drive.
I have no doubt you will see blue leaflets taking the responsibility for all this but many of you know the real story and Councillor Barabara Dring and I will continue to put the real pressure on to get even more roads done.

Friday, 6 November 2009

DANGEROUS WALL ON COTLEIGH GROVE AND THE COUNCILS LACK OF ACTION








For the last 10 years or so the Birmingham City Council have been avoiding taking responsibility for resolving the problem of having a large retaining wall, on the boundary of Cotleigh Grove repaired. The result is as you can see from the photos above the side passage at no 19 Cotleigh Grove is unusable.
Large wood battens have braced the wall for ten years and for most of that time youngsters have used these battens to clime on the wall up to a fence and into land to the rear of it.
The fence is now so damaged that it is a danger to children.
What is the Housing departments reaction to all this? "we don't know who owns the land and are trying to deal with the situation". This has I repeat been going on for ten years.
The very least the Housing department should do is make sure the fence on top of the wall is made safe the whole situation is a disgrace.

Thursday, 5 November 2009

KEEP YOUR PETS IN OVER THE WEEKEND.

After all the rain tonight which seems to have put a lot of using fireworks you can bet you bottom dollar there will be a lot of Fireworks going off this weekend.
I would suggest you keep your pets in at night over the weekend to stop them getting frightened.

PATROLING THE BANDYWOOD ESTATE WITH THE POLICE NEIGHBOURHOOD TASKING GROUP








I spent a damp afternoon yesterday doing a walk about as part of the Police Neighbourhood Tasking Group. The idea was to speak to local residents on the Bandywood estate and trying to see if we could resolve problems for them. Taking part as members of the NTG as well as myself were were Local community Group Representatives, Council officers and the Police.
There was also a Police caravan on site for much of the afternoon.
A number of issues came up including fly tipping and problems with anti social behaviour. There was certainly one result a youngster taking drugs was spotted and dealt with.
Back at the base a number of issues were raised. I brought up the issue of parking near the James Watt College and various speeding issues. The Police were able to inform us that following an increase in burglaries recently the Police has a crack down and a number of people were arrested.
If you would like more information about the NTG please ring ) 0121 464 1869

EXCITING TIMES AHEAD FOR COOKSEY LANE

Councillor Barbara Dring and I attended a public meeting to discuss the future of the Cooksey Lane Playing Fields last night. We were pleased to hear from representatives of the leaseholders Maxims that they had exiting plans for the site.
These include trying to raise funds for Astra turf and even a boxing pavilion which could be built on the back of the site. These facilities would be of wonderful benefit to local youngsters.
We also heard that after representations tree on the boundary of the site will be pruned shortly. This will be a relief to the sites neighbours.
The area's Councillors were asked to go on a new committee but I suggested and it was agreed this was in the form of observers who could go when possible. Local resident and organisations as well as users of the site will also be making up the committee.
As I say exiting times are are predicted for Cooksey Lane.

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

DON'T BUY MINI MOTOS FOR CHRISTMAS

POLICE are warning parents in Birmingham not to buy their children mini motos for Christmas presents as they could end up being confiscated and crushed.
They say the vehicles are unsuitable for children and teenagers, cause a nuisance and, in most cases, are illegal.
These days’ youngsters ride around parks, reserves and streets on the miniature engines which can be dangerous to pedestrians. Many pedestrians also feel that this is anti social behavior and noisy.
“There is nowhere in Oscott where the mini motos can be legally ridden.”
The motos, which cost over a £100, need tax, insurance, a license and MOT to be legally driven. But they cannot be used on the pavement, road or in a public place. The only place they can be legally ridden is on private land – such as a large garden or farmland –there is very little of this in Birmingham let alone Oscott. And police say in most cases they are unroadworthy as they do not have horns, a speedometer, or lights and the brakes are often not good enough.
: “This is the time of year when parents are thinking about what to buy for their children for Christmas they should – think twice about a mini moto. It is just not worth it.
The Police if they spot these mini motos can confiscate and crush them and I am told they will do so.”. No one wants to be a kill joy but what the Police are saying does make sense.

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

£60 FINE FOR OBSTRUCTING A DROPPED CURB.?


It is unusual I admit but the Birmingham City Councils Transportation department seem to have done something right. They have now identified that cars parking over a drop curb is an offense which could lead to a £60 fine.
If you are troubled by vehicles parking over your dropped curb try ringing the Transportation department on303 7799 to seek advice.
It will be interested to see how officers of the Transportation department react. Just Quote Councillor Len Gregory (Cabinet member for Street Services report to the Birmingham City Council 3rd Nov 09.)

PUDDING AND PINT UPDATE

There appears to be a rumour going around that the Pudding and Pint public House Kingstanding, is going to convert to a place of worship of some description. I am not sure where this rumour has come from but it is certainly not on the cards.
Although it is not in the Oscott Ward, I have spoken to the relevant Council Planning Officers and they have had no approach from anyone, accepting a speculative approach from a consortium wishing to convert the site to a nursing home.
The current Pudding and Pint site only has planning permission for retail,Office, restaurant or public house use and any other type of operation would need a change in Planning permission with all the difficulties that could entail. I am also sure any Planning permission Changes would be closely looked at by the Planning department not to mention Kingstanding Councillors.

(For confirmation please see note below.)


Hello Councillor

Just to confirm our telephone conversation earlier - there are currently no planning applications for the premises.

The previous use was as a drinking establishment (use class A4), which can change to a shop (A1), financial & professional services - such as a bank (A2) and restaurants & cafes (A3) without the need for planning permission. Any other use would require planning permission for a change of use.

I hope this is of assistance.

Kind regards

Pete Barton
Constituency Planning Officer - Erdington

03.11.09

Monday, 2 November 2009

SPEED REDUCTION MEASURES NEEDED IN KETTLEHOUSE ROAD

Kettle House Road and Bandywood Road have also seen more than thee fare share of road accidents over the last few years. But yet again the Current Council administration will take no action in introducing sensible traffic calming measures. As a local resident said to me recently "why is it Kingstanding and other areas can get things like mini islands to slow the traffic down and yet we can not?".
I may be wrong I admit, but I think those islands were put in during the life time of a previous administration?
I have handed in petitions and and put in numerous complaints but to no avail. But be assured I will continue to try and get the Transportation department to take up its responsibility to its residents.
I will also be asking the Police to look at using the community speed watch equipment (which will be paid for by the Oscott Ward Committee next year) in the Kettlehouse Road area.

Saturday, 31 October 2009

DIVERTING FROM ONE DANGER TO ANOTHER


I would like to thank a Mr S who pointed out to me the Police through no fault of their own are often having to divert traffic off the Queslett Road following a accident, into Booths Lane with all the potential danger that may bring, especial at this time of year with the early dark nights.
Certainly if you ride a motor bike it is not the safest road to ride along and I am sure many a cars roads springs must earn their keep.
I have brought this to the attention of the Police but in all fairness there is little they can do.
It is time the Birmingham City Council took action and either repaired the unadapted section of Booths Lane or better still adopted it.

YET ANOTHER ACCIDENT ON THE QUESLETT ROAD


There has been another serious accident on the Queslett Road. This time on the opposite dide of the Queslett Road to the Nova Court junction.
Sadly an Amberline Ambulance Car with a Doctor on board, hit the motorway bridge or post. Ambulances were called and passengers taken away. The car was in a very bad state.
I am sure I can speak for Councillor Dring when I say these accidents are becoming too regular on this stretch of road.
I have now called YET AGAIN on the senior officers of the Birmingham City Council and the Director of Sandwell Councils Transportation department to urgently re look at this stretch of road and work together to introduce road safety measures including traffic lights at the Nova Court junction to this stretch of road following this most recent accident.
Many residents including Maureen Byrne (who lives near this accident black spot) and Mr Wilde who have campaigned for years with me to get this stretch of road sorted out and we will continue to do so. The Great Barr Observer have also in the past done their bit to highlight the problem.
Action must be taken sooner or later to deal with this stretch of Queslett Road perhaps this accident will act as a "Wake UP CALL" to those resposible for this road

Thursday, 29 October 2009

STILL NO ACTION FOR MOOR LANE


How many more Moor Lane residents cars need to be damaged by speeding passing vehicles, before the Councils Transportation department takes action?
Despite numerous requests for action and petitions this Council seem uninteresting in resolving the problem.

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

MY ADVICE BUREAUX


Along with Councillor Barbara Dring I operate a rota system in regards to advice Beaux's*

Every Saturday of the month, 10.30am
610 Community Centre, Kingstanding Road, Birmingham, B44 (Induction Loop Available)

1st Thursday of the month, 3.00pm*
Kingstanding Library, Kingstanding Road, Kingstanding, Birmingham.

1st Wednesday of the month, 7.00pm*
610 Community Centre, Kngstanding Road, Birmingham, B44 (Induction Loop Available)

Should you have genuine mobility problems we are happy to make house visits by appointment.

I can also be contacted by the following methods

By
letter -- Council House Victoria Square Birmingham West Midlands UK B1 1BB
E. Mailmailto:Keith.Linnecor@birmingham.gov.uk
Telephone(0121) 360 6486 or 0121 303 2039 (Message service)

Saturday, 24 October 2009

WALK ABOUT IN TEMPLETON ROAD.

During a Councillors walk about in Templeton road yesterday Councillor Barbara Dring and I really got to what residents thought about.
Fore instance there is a lot of concerns about the state of the carriage ways and pavements in the area as you may expect. Residents can not understand why the council does not have a program of works to deal with these problems.
Residents are also concerned that requests to deal with speeding in the area have been turned down by the Council. We were glad to hear however the introduction of the 375 bus route in the road has not been a particular problem.

Thursday, 22 October 2009

REDUCTIONS IN BULKY WASTE COLLECTION SERVICE

Fly tipping like this in Booths Lane will only get worse next year due to the Councils cuts in the Bulky Waste Service.



Due to cuts being made by the current Council Administration, from January you will only be able to request up to 3 Bulky item collections free of Charge in one year. It you would like have between 3 and 6 you will have to pay £15 and for more than 6 it will cost you £60 for each collection. We are told other author ties charge more for the same service but we are a bigger authority and residents in Oscott relate to this service when they pay there council tax.
Also as can be seen from Booths Lane residents from other authorities are not afraid to dump rubbish in Oscott and this fly tipping will only get worse when Birmingham residents are forced to pay.
one hundred and fifty thousand residents use this service up to 6 times a year and only a hand full abuse 30 times as it as claimed.
Sadly as many people have foreseen we are now feeling the long awaited for cuts in services.

While I accept a small number of residents may abuse the current free system of bulk collections but this draconian response is very unwelcome and when this is added to the reduction in the Ward Environmental officer time allowed in a ward it will result in an increase in fly tipping.

SKATE BOARD AND BMX CENTRE A STEP NEARER

A planning application to build a top class BMX centre and Skate board park on the Aldridge Road side of Perry Barr park, was agreed today at the Councils Planning Committee.

Councillor Dring has campaigned long and hard for this and I am delighted to see it take a step closer to being built. The youngster in Oscott and the surrounding area should be enjoying these recreation facilities by the middle of next year if not before.

It is an ideal location given its proximately to Oscott via all the main bus routes as it is near the College road site of the park just yards from the Oscott boundary. The building work should begin in a matter of months.

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

LETS SUPPORT THE DISABLED ELECTIC SCOOTER USER


Having been given the opportunity to see for my self the problems those disabled residents who have to use an Electric scooter have, I can only say I am pleased to support demands for better pavements and drop curbs.
It is only when you use an electric wheel chair (or the standard wheel chair) you realise how badly users are effected by poor standards in out pavements. It is not only the bumpy ride (just what you do not want when you have a bad back) but also the lack of enough disabled drop curbs. Having to use somebody drive and go out on the road is just not on.
It is time this Council prioritised areas like Oscott where there is a high proportion of elderly residents when it comes to maintaining pavements.
I will be calling on the Council Administration to do just that. The Government have put forward a package of credits for the Council to improve our roads and pavements.I t is time they got on with it.
It is also time , shops, community buildings and offices did more to assist those who have to use electic scooters.
If you are an electric Scooter user or some one who uses a wheel chair and if you know of a bad stretch of pavement please let me know. Tel 360 6486.

MEETINGS ARRANGED TO DISCUSS PARKING PROBLEMS AROUND THE JAMES WATT COLLEGE

The delays in getting something done to sort out the dangerous parking near the James Watt College are a disgrace.
This is why Councillor Dring and I have not let up on trying to resolve the issue. I am as the Chair of the Oscott Ward Advisory Board, calling on all the parties involved, the College, the Planning Department, the Transportation department, the Police and Community leaders, to come along to the next Oscott Ward Advisory board, to discuss the issue and hopefully move it on.
Councillor Dring who is the Chair of the Oscott Ward Committee, is also calling the same parties to the Oscott Ward Committee which takes place a couple of weeks after the Oscott WAB meeting. This will enable the public to hear for their selves what is or not being done by those concerned and to air their veiws.
It is time for action to be taken and the excuses to stop.

Saturday, 17 October 2009

DYAS ROAD RESIDENTS UNHAPPY WITH JUCTION

I met a number of residents yesterday in what ended up as a walk about in Dyas Road yesterday.
One of the issues which was of some concern to many of these residents, were cars parking in a way to obstruct the views of motorists using the Days Road, Aldridge Road junction.
There is currently a road safety consultation process being carried out regarding this issue by the Council and I have passed on residents concerns.

YET ANOTHER ACCIDENT ON ALDRIDGE ROAD NEAR GREENHOLM ROAD

There has been yet another accident near the junction of Greenholm Road and Aldridge Road. I am not aware of any injuries but certainly it did the cars involved no good.
I will continue to request that traffic lights or some other similar road safety measure is put in place at this junction. The new signs have been a help but more is needed.

Thursday, 15 October 2009

MOOR LANE TO BE CLOSED FOR 3 DAYS

Moor Lane will be closed to traffic accept Plant and to frontages for 3 days from the 14th of November. This is due to much needed and request resurfacing of the carriageway.
Now they have grant requests to resurface the carriage way I will keep trying to get them to look at introducing sensible road safety measures, signage and so on, you never know they may do something one day.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

COUNCILLOR DRING LEADS CAMPAIGN TO IMPROVE COOKSEY LANE


I am pleased to be able to support the good work Councillor Barbara Dring is doing on behalf of the residents in Cooksey Lane. Today she will be presenting a petition to the Council on behalf of local residents concerning the state of the carriage way in the road. The Council turned down the last petition lets hope we have better luck this time.

Monday, 12 October 2009

INTERGRATRATED TRANSPORT AUTHORITY MEETING ?

At a meeting of the Integrated Transport Authority business improvemnt Committee ( I know it is a real mouthful) for once a number of interesting issues came up.
For example they were trying yo mull over why Bus patronage has fallen 4% across the West midland area over the last 12 months. I explained in my view it does not help to keep passangers when buses like the 655 are withdrawn from service.
There was also a discussion about the well know Transport Users Forums (TUFTS) especially the Birmingham one.
Again I tried to explain to our Tory / Lib Coalition in charge of the ITA that it may be helpful if they told people what these Forums were. If you look back at some of my old posts you will see I have tried to. I may do so again in the future but for now if unlike most Councillors in the WestMidland you would like to know more about a body supposedly set up to inform Transport users ,what is happening in the way of service provision and so on give me a ring on 0121 360 6486.

RIGHT OF WAY CLEANED ALREADY


The Councils Deep Clean Squad should change their name to Superman. Why because "faster than a speeding bullet" they have now cleaned up the Right of way (see last post) between Birkenshaw Road and Birdbrook Road.
I am impressed well done. I now look forward to seeing this being claimed in a political leaflet by someone WHO CLAIMES THE WORK HAS BEEN DONE BY THEM???

Saturday, 10 October 2009

COMMITMENT TO GET BIRKENSHAW RIGHT OF WAY CLEANED


Over the last few weeks a number of residents living in Birkenshaw Road have been asking if I could get the Council to clean up the right of way, between Birkenshaw Road and Birdbrook Road.
I am now pleased to say the Council have now agreed to carry out the clean up and hedge cutting required required, to make this right of way, pleasant to walk through. They have promised to do the work shortly.

Friday, 9 October 2009

IMAGINE GETTING HELP FOR MENTAL HEALTH ILLNESS

Last week as part of the Oscott Ward Committee I was pleased to be able to grant £1.000 funding for the Imagine group. This is a voluntary self help group who work with people with a mental health illness.
The funding will help pay for trips and to keep the groups Independence when it comes to meeting together to help one another.

If you would like more details about this group please ring 464 1869

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

WHERE ARE THE MISSING LITTER BINS?


I have been requesting replacement litter bins for some time now for locations across the Oscott Ward.
Litter bins are at the moment on order and waiting for placement I am told.
It is a great shame that so many litter bins are being vandalised at the moment as they for fill a useful role in keeping rubbish and litter off our streets.
If you know of a liter bin that has gone missing please let me know. Tel 360 6486

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

YET ANOTHER ACCIDENT ON THE QUESLETT ROAD

Eye witnesses have informed me that there was yet another accident on the Queslett Road near the Nova Court Junction (opp0site) on Saturday evening. An ambulance was called to the scene.

It would appear that the Birmingham and Sandwell Council seem unconcerned about the dangerous on this stretch of road and are far more interested in avoiding their responsibility which is to introduce road safety measures there.

Saturday, 3 October 2009

MORE HELP FOR YOUNG PEOPLE IN OSCOTT

I was pleased along with the other Oscott Ward Committee Councillors to agree that more funding from the Oscott Community Chest be given to those supporting our youngsters in the area.
Recently funding was agreed for, Out door play provisions for the Goodway Nursery and the Elim Church towards football coaching for children.

Thursday, 1 October 2009

AGE CONCERN GETS FUNDS FOR GARDENING PROJECT

Age Perry Barr will be able to carry on with their elderly residents gardening scheme thanks to the Oscott Ward Committee agreeing to a £3.000 funding request by Age Concern.
This will mean elderly resident in the area will be able to get their gardens maintained on a one off basis byAge concern
Many elderly resident find it difficult to keep their gardens under control and this initiative which is a continuation from last years should help that.
For more details please give me a ring on 360 6486.
(he Oscott Ward Committee comprises of Councillor Barbara Dring, Grahm Green and myself.)

Saturday, 26 September 2009

3 LOCAL RESIDENT WE SHOULD ALL THANK

JEAN BAKER, PAULINE ALDER, MYSELF AND WELL KNOW PERRY BARR HOUSING LIASON BOARD REP MAUREEN INGER.



I was really honour to along with Councillor Barbara Dring be asked to award a certificate of honour to local residents yesterday at a Social gathering.
The well deserving recipients were Jean Baker, Pauline Alder and Pauline Cooke.
All three have behind the scenes in a no fuss sort of way really battled for their local community.
Jean has for many years (until recent ill health) been connected with the Oscott Housing Liaison Boards and the Oscott North Neighbourhood Forum.
Pauline A has been a champion for the elderly for many years. She has been a member of the Friends of Witton Cemetery and also a local residents group for many years.
Pauline C helped set up the Old Oscott Community Centre many years ago and has been very active in local residents groups.
I think we all owe a debt of gratitude to residents like these and their selflessness should inspire those of a younger generation.

Friday, 25 September 2009

OSCOTT HOUSING LIAISION BOARD AGM RESULT

After a hard fought battle Car0le Dempster was re elected as Chair of the Oscott Housing Liaison Board last night. Carole who is well know for her battling qualities on behalf of residents won a clear majority in the end.
Alan Wolverson also had a clear Marjory when being elected as the vice chair.
I hope everyone will put aside their differences and have the good grace to get behind these 2 and work for the local community.

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

NIGHTMARE PARKING GOES ON


The parking at the end of Burnham Road and Birdbrook Road where it joins onto the Aldridge Road slip road is getting worse by the day. Since the College opposite reopened as the James Watt metropolitan college, it has been a nightmare for local traders and residents. There are dozens of extra students parking all over the place on corners of the roads (even in Courtenay Road) on grass verges and on pavements.
It is time the Highways department took control of the situation. They should stop delaying and take action before a serious accident occurs.
I am disappointed that neither the James Watt College or Mitchells and Butlers estates have got back to me regarding my idea that they use the disused Drakes Drum car park, to take some of the parking off the road.
I am in constant touch with senior Highways engineers and the Police over this mater and will continue to press on them the importance of taking action.

MARY VALE PROJECT GOING FROM STRENGTH TO STRENGTH.




I was delighted to be asked by the Maryvale Project to attend their Ist anniversary celebrations. They are doing a terrific job for the elderly and other members of the local community.
There was good entertainment for elderly residents including an exelant Steel drum band from the Cardinal Wise man School. Here's to a successful second year for them.

Monday, 21 September 2009

PENSIONER CONVENTION STILL DOING NICELY

I went along to the Perry Barr Pensioners Convention today. It was good to see that these meeting are well attended and informative. Chairman Les Phillips and his team do a good job motivation the elderly in the area and they are always very welcoming. These meetings take at the Great Barr Leisure Centre.
If you would like more details ring Ken Smith 624 6981

Saturday, 19 September 2009

MARHALL GROVE RESIDENTS TELL US WHAT THEY THINK


Councillor Barbara Dring and I did another of our regular street walk abouts yesterday, this time in Marhall Grove. A number of residents there told us of their concerns about Council cut backs, the poor sate of the pavements and the increase in litter in the area.
We will be looking to the Council to take action in these areas.

TRAINNING WORK ON QUESLETT NATURE RESERVE




Along with other dedicated Queslett Nature Reserve, I attended the first of a series of Training sessions where members received training for Parks department Rangers.
Today's session was all about tool handling their use and how to work safely with them.
It will now be up to Reserve members to try and pass on their newly acquired knowledge to other members and hopefully build up a pool of members who can work with less supervision on the reserve.

Friday, 18 September 2009

COUNCIL CAN NOT AFFORD A ROAD DIRECTION SIGN

It was recently pointed out to me that there was no sign telling any one where the Queslett nature Reserve was. I checked and this is in fact correct. I then contacted the Highways department only to be told we do not do these signs for free and it would cost £300 to have one made and erected. "could the Friends of the Queslett Nature Reserve ( voluntary group) pay for one?"
Well what a sorry state of affairs the Council seem to have got them selves. It would appear they can not even afford a information sign, giving directions to one of their own Nature Reserves.

Thursday, 17 September 2009

PERRY BARR SPEED WAY PLANNING APPLICATION DEFFERED FOR 0NE YEAR.

You may well have heard the news but just in case you have not! The Perry Barr Speed way planning application has been deferred for 1 year.
It was felt by some of the Planning committee this would give the applicants time to see how the new style exhaust silencers work and if they help reduce the noise problem which some local residents have complained about so much.

I have my reservations as to whether 1 year is enough time to see if the new technology involved with regards to these new silencers works, but I could find no agreement to my suggestion that the decision should not be taken for 2 years instead.

I now hope that the applicants can resolve the noise problems and that Speed Way with all the obvious advantages it bring to Perry Barr and Birmingham will, succeed at the Perry Barr stadium and eliminate the perceived noise problems we are told about.

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

NEW CCTV FOR GREAT BARR LEISURE CENTRE AND ALDRIDGE RECREATION GROUND

I was really pleased to see a new CCTV camera has been placed in the Aldridge Road Recreation Ground area. This will give almost complete coverage of the recreation ground and will supplement the one Councillor Dring and I fought so hard to get as part of the arrangements for the children's play area on the site, some years ago.

PERRY BARR SPEED WAY PLANNING APLICATION

I have received dozens and dozens of emails and letters concerning tomorrows Planning application for the Perry Barr Speedway Stadium. As a member of the Committee looking into the application I have to remain neutral and not comment on the subject until after it has been fully aired at tomorrows Planning Committee.
What I can say is I have endeavored to read as many of the emails and letters as I could and have taken on board the comments made in them.
Any one still with a view on the matter needs to contact the Planning department ASAP before tomorrows planning committee meeting.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

375 BUS ROUTE CHAOS


Following a week of un announced chaos for those living in the Milnes Walker Court and Oscott School Lane area, I have managed to get the Choice Bus Company, Centro and the Bus Commissioners to arrange to reintroduce the service to Oscott School Lane. This follows both Councillor Barbara Dring and I having to deal with a number of elderly residents waiting for none existent buses to arrive at bus stops on Oscott School Lane.
Why Centro and Choice did not let people know about their change in route is beyond me however I have been informed there will be publicity for the new change will will come into operation on Monday.

Saturday, 12 September 2009


The Friends of the Queslett Nature Reserve are still looking for new members to join them in their battle to improve the Quslett Nature Reserve, The Aldridge Recreation Ground and the local environment.
The hold activity days (designed for those who want to do more than just talk about improving the environment, litter picks, bush clearance work, tree and bush planting and so on. They also actively campaign for a better nature reserve and local environment.
Membership is free please think about joining.
For more information please ring 360 6486. (also please note there is a Queslett Nature Reserve blog see my link)

Friday, 11 September 2009

NEW FENCING SUCCSESS


it is very pleasing to see that the new fencing along the the Kingstanding Boundary of the Burford Road Playing Feilds has all been completed. Residents have already told me they are really happy about this and it was money well spent.
There has also been a section of new fencing put in on the Oscott School Lane boundary of the Aldridge Recreation Ground and we will continue to look for funding to replace the rest.

Thursday, 10 September 2009

HMS DARING GETS THE FREEDOM OF THE CITY OF BIRMINGHAM

I was pleased to be able to attend the ceremony to announce that HMS Daring and her crew have received the freedom of the city today.
It was a very good spectacle and it is good to see our armed forces receiving the honours they deserve is a wonderful thing. We all owe a large debt of gratitude to our armed forces.

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

LATE LATE YOUTH CLUB ARE DOING WELL

I popped in to see the members of the Late Late Youth Club who operate from the 610 Community Centre on a Tuesday morning, yesterday. It was good to see they seem to be doing well as a group, unfortunately how ever due to another commitment I was not able to take up their kind offer to have a game of Countdown with them.
For more information about this group ring 464 2268

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

NO MORE AGENDA'S AT MEETINGS OF THE COUNCIL?

Apparently so I am informed, Ward Committees and District Committees (meetings held in front of the public to inform them of what is happening and to hear the public's views) are now not to be allowed to give out agena's to the public.
This decree has come down from the Council Administration to save money apparently?.

I would have thought letting residents know what is going on is worth the money.
However if this is going to happen?, I have suggested a copy of the various agenda,s be shown at meeting on a overhead projector of some kind. Perhaps this may help make meetings understandable to those resident who attend?

Monday, 7 September 2009

BURFORD ROAD PLAYING FIELD FENCING TO BE ERECTED THIS WEEK?

I have been reliably informed that the new fencing intended for the Kingstanding Road Boundary of the Burford Road Playing Fields is to be erected this week. Lets hope so.

STOP PRESS THE WORK STATED 8am Tuesday 8th.

Saturday, 5 September 2009

UNDERGROUND RECYCLING BINS A SUCCESS


Underground recycling bins are a success is the message I have been receiving from residents recently. Oscott have two such sets of underground recycling bins located near the Kingstanding Library and on the corner of Birdbrook road and Old Oscotthill.

These bins have done away with the need to see unsightly vandalised above ground bins and over the years they have been there they have proved very successful.
These bins really compliment the door step collection service and were certainly money well spent.

Friday, 4 September 2009

NEW BUS SHELTER FOR SHADY LANE


Residents informed me they were pleased to see a new mini bus shelter be erected near the Aldridge Road end of Shady Lane. This follows a petition I presented to Centro on their behalf about 4 years ago. I have been pressing ever since for one of the mini shelters as they do not attact anti social youngsters like the larger shelters.

Thursday, 3 September 2009

SPEEDING BUSES ON COOKSEY LANE

I am still receiving a number of complaints about the way some bus drivers are speeding down Cooksey Lane. This is not only potentially dangerous but also it can lead to vibration in residents homes which causes them a lot of annoyance. It does not help either that the council wont repair any of the sunken trenches in the carriage way and apart from filling in the odd pot hole are taking no interest at all. I have been in touch with Centro and the Transportation regarding the issue trying to get them to take action

CAR PARK CLEAN UP


I am pleased to report that following weeks of trying to get the small car park belonging to the Drakes drum public hose swept of glass and rubbish it has now been done. There have also been over hanging tree branches cut back.
I have also asked if the Council would act as a go between for the Drakes Drum and the college opposite to see if this car par can be used once again by students for parking their cars and I understand the college has agreed to litter pick the car park if the Drakes drum allow it to be used as a car park for their students.
I hope now the owners of the Drakes Drum will be able to see their way forward to helping the local community in regard to the problems there have been in the area as a result of too many student cars being parked in the area.

Saturday, 22 August 2009

NO TO MOOR LANE PETITION

The Birmingham City Council have turned down a petition from Moor Lane residents calling for road safety measures in their road which I presented for them.
Residents are fed up coming out in the morning to missing wing mirrors and scratched cars due to speeding traffic. This road needs some form of traffic safety measures introduced. Signage and narrowing would have been a help. Still they will have to try again and lets also hope there are no more accidents.

Friday, 21 August 2009

A LEVEL SUCCSESS.

I would just like to say well done to all those youngsters who have worked so hard for their A. level results. More and more youngsters from Oscott are getting better results.
I am not one of those who down play the work these youngsters do by saying it is easier to pass these days. I think our youngsters deserve better than that.

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

IS THERE ANY THING FOR THE KIDS TO DO IN OSCOTT DURRING THE SUMMER! YES THERE IS?


At this time of the year half way through the holiday desperate parents and their chidren often ask me "is there any thing for the kids to do in Oscott"
Well the answer is "yes there is".
There are a number of Council and voluntary groups keeping youngsters occupied all year around in Oscott. Many of these are supported by the Oscott Community Chest.

For example there is the Mary Vale youth group ( for details ring 07711 44 0381)
The Great Barr Leisure Centre has a number of activities for young people (for details ring 464 0104.
The 610 Community Centre has youth clubs and many other activities youngsters can get involved in (ring 464 2268 for details)
There are also a whole range of other actives for youngsters being held across the Oscott Ward and surrounding area. These are being organised by the Councils youth services Ring 675 6717 for details.

AGE CONCERN DESERVE ALL OUR SUPPORT

Age Concern to an awful of work for pensioners in the Oscott area. They have a Handy Man scheme, a gardening scheme give out useful information and also hold befriending sessions.
I like to pop in to meetings which they hold every Thursday at the Emmanuel Church Kingstanding Road 2pm to 4pm. when I can o see if any one needs any advice.
They hold a range of activities at these meeting, for example when I popped in last Thursday, they were watching a film about Cadburies in the past.
On the next three Thursdays they are doing the following.
27th August A Talk by Jeremy Shields from the City Council about recycling
3rd September Its a bingo session
10th September There will be a road safety talk.

There are also trips being organised and other activities such as extend exercise classes.* these are in various locations accross the ward.

If you or anyone you know wants to get out of the house to meet other elderly residents why not contact Age Concern on 358 0309

Monday, 17 August 2009

CONCERNS ABOUT THE NHS EXPRESSED AT KINGSTANDING PENSIONERS CONVENTION MEETING


I was pleased to be asked to attend a meeting of the Kingstanding Pensioners Convention today.
I went along with Councillor Barbara Dring to listen to the concerns of a number of pensioners in the area. There main concerns were about whether the free bus pass will be retained, why some people are attacking the NHS and the need for a new bus shelter on the college road,

I was able to assure member of the KPC that the bus pass is safe in the hands of the current government, many of those attacking the NHS were just giving their own political view (hopefully not shared by mainy of their political allies?) on the subject. Most agreed our NHS is vital to the elderly and it should not be got rid of after the next general elections. I am also working with the KPC Chair, to try and resolve the bus shelter issue. I had to admit however, Kingstanding residents and Councillors are opposed to the idea.
Councillor Barbara Dring answered a number of questions about Social Services and health commissioning. Khalid mahmood MP sent a representative (Tristan) to feed back to him as he (KM) was in London..
As ever it was an enjoyable meeting well chaired by Les phillips with the help of Ken Smith.

Saturday, 15 August 2009

OSCOTT PUBLIC MEETING GOES WELL




I was pleased to be able to fit in attending the Oscott Residents Groups public meeting today.
It was as usual an interesting meeting with a number of challenging questions being put as part of it. There were a number of Questions which were parking related, questions about the progress of the new proposed skate Bord centre and well as questions about anti social behavior. Khalid Mahmmod MP was there as the special guest speaker along with Police Sergeant Kearns.

KINGSTANDING ROAD / GREENHOLM ROAD PARKING STILL NEEDS SORTING OUT


That old chess nut the pavement and parking on the Kingstanding Road near the corner of Greenholm is still causing concern to residents. The problem is that customers and staff from the near by shops park at an angle on the pavement at this location. This on occasions obstructs the pavements and damages them.
The Council has an a few occasions come up with plans to try and deal with this situation but on each occasion these plans have not been well received. It is partly a result of the Current Council not wishing to commit the adequate funds to do the job properly in my view. This will not be an easy situation to sort out and in fairness over the years Councillors from all parties have had a go at it.
I have been in touch recently with the Transportation department recently asking them to review the situation. I have also reminded the Police to keep an eye on the parking situation so it does not get out of hand.
If you have a view on the situation please give me a ring on 360 6486.

Friday, 14 August 2009

MORE HARD WORK PLANED FOR THE FRIENDS OF THE QUESLETT NATURE RESERVE


I had an interesting site meeting with Local Parks Managers today and members of the FQNR ,on the Queslett Nature Reserve. Many reserve related issues were discussed and future plans laid.
Although the Friends of the Queslett Nature Reserve a fairly small in number they make up for it in their commitment to the Reserve and the Local Environment.
A practical works program has now been planned for the coming six months and it is hoped that at the end of that time continuing improvements to the reserve will be noticed.
The Council itself will however have to take some responsibility for some of the work they have already undertaken which needs finishing of and I will do what I can to see this work is done.
Councillor Barbara Dring who also came along to today's meeting has also given her backing to improving the reserve.

If you would like to roll up your sleeves and get stuck in to help improve the reserve for the wildlife and the users of the reserve give me a ring on 36o 6486

KING GEORGE PLAYING FIELDS NEW FENCING IS NOW IN PLACE


While I am on about giving credit for things being done in the ward, I think it is appropriate to thank Brian Stevens who is a member of the Oscott North Neighbourhood Forum and the Oscott Housing Liaison Board for all hos efforts helping to get funding from the Council to finish off having new fencing put up on the King George Playing Fields (Oscott site.)
Brian with the help of the Oscott HLB, Councillor Dring and myself have after at least 4 years finally got this new fencing erected. It will mean added security for local residents who back on to the playing fields and there will be added protection for the Cooksey Lane playing Fields.

Thursday, 13 August 2009

LETS GIVE CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE

It was with sadness I learnt how poorly both Jean Baker and Pauline Alder are at the moment.
Both of these ladies have worked very hard for a number of years for the local community in Oscott.
They have been behind the scene in many cases trying to help the local community organising trips, looking after people and campaigning on a number of local issues.
Both Jean and Pauline have also been keen activists on a number of community organisations like Forums Housing Liaison Boards, the Friends of Witton Cemetery and the Kingstanding Neighbourhood Police initiative amongst other things. They have certainly kept me on my toes at times with their demands on behalf of local residents.
They certainly deserve more credit than they have received and I hope their health improves in the future

WORK ON THE AREAS NEW SKATE BOARD PARK MAY START IN MARCH.?

Councilor Barbara Dring who is leading the campaign for a new Skate Board facility in the area has told me " It is hoped that the New Skate Board Centre for local youths will start being built in March. I have a number of youngsters on to me' who can hardly wait.!"
This new centre will be even better than originally thought as new funding is going into it.
Despite a few people who are in opposition to its location we find most people like the place it is going to be put on the Perry Barr Park (on the Oscott side) as it is on main bus routes (997 994,107, 33) and not to close to residents home. There is also a Ranger service for Perry Barr Park and the security of all concerned should be a lot better as a result. BMX tracks are also going to be placed near by and the whole thing will complement the Alexander Stadium which is on the other end of the park. This will be a major youth facility for the area
I am sure Barbara 's campaign will bring a lot of enjoyment to local youngsters.

STILL NO ACTION IN KETTLEHOUSE ROAD


Some months ago now at a site meeting in Kettlehouse Road with residents and council officers, it was shown how dangerous the pavement in Kettlehouse Road can be near the HSB ATM. While we were there drivers were "bouncing up the curb narrowly missing pedestrians, to get as close to the bank as possible. This is amassing given there is a free car park with a few yards of the bank.
Transportation engineers agreed to extend guard railings and to reduce the amount of taxi ranks in the area to help prevent motorist driving on the pavement. However still nothing has been done and in fact due to a taxi rank poll being removed it is even easier to get onto the pavement. Why this Council Administration take so long even to carry out simple improvements is a real mystery. I will keep on to them about this issue however.

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

WEST MIDLAND POLICE WEBB LINK

I popped in for a long Chat with Inspector Leavesley at Kingstanding Police Station today.
During the course of our conversation I was assured that the Police are keeping up with crime in the area. There is also a WMP webb were residents can keep up with the activities of their local Police. Just log in then go through the Sutton Cold Field Station Link Neighbourhood Policing.
If you want more details or have a complaint you want me to pass onto the Police give me a ring on 360 6486
(And do not forget the Police will be attending the Oscott Residents Groups Public meeting Sat 15th August 10.45am at the 610 Community Centre.)

Saturday, 8 August 2009

LOG BENCHES PUT IN RESERVE AT LAST.


The Queslett Nature Reserve activity day went well on Thursday.
Council officers with a team of students as well and FQNR members, cleared more scrub, cleaned rubbish out of the lake, put in 5 new basic log benches for people to sit on and littered picked on the site. Luckily the weather stayed OK and I would like to thank all who helped.

Friday, 7 August 2009

PUBLIC MEETING CALLED BY OSCOTT RESIDENT GROUPS

I have been asked to attend a public meeting of the Oscott Residents Groups on Saturday 15th of August (10.45am at the 610 Community Centre) and I try and attend as many public meetings as possible as they help me understand the problems residents have and in most cases questions are asked which keep you on your toes. I will certainly try and get to this one as the Oscott Resident Groups work hard organising these meeting.
I hope you will be able to attend but if you do have any issues you want to raise with me and can not get to this meeting please give me a ring on 360 6486.

HOST CORPERATION GOLF COURSE GOES INTO ADMINISTRATION

I was sorry to hear that the Host Corperation who own the 9 hole golf course in Booths Lane have gone into administration.
Although Councillor Barbara Dring , most of the local community and myself have had a number of issues between us (mainly the condition of the unadopted Booths Lane) I am sorry to see the company in such trouble.

I have grave concerns for the future of the site and will do what I can to ensure the site is maintained for Leisure purposes. My main concern however is for those who use the Booths Lane unadopted section. I have been in touch already with the Council asking them to reconsider adopting this lane and to consider using some of the new PFI funding made available by the government. I am now calling on the Councils Transportation department to have a complete re think on this issue.

Thursday, 6 August 2009

YET MORE DELAYS FOR THE NOVA COURT TRAFIC LIGHTS

Despite promise after promise the Birmingham City Council have yet again announced a delay in having traffic lights put in place at the Nova Court Junction of Queslett Road. Apparently the Sandwell MBC are objecting to some aspects of the proposals. You would have though after all this time the Birmingham and Sandwell Council could have sorted out their differences. They need to stop stalling and get on and do the work.
you can be assured at least Councillor Barbara Dring and I will keep the pressure on to get these lights erected ASAP.

NEW PUBLIC CENTRAL LIBARY

As part of my Planning Committee duties I had to go to Alpa Tower today to look at the latest plans for the 190 Million pound new Central Library.
Although I can see potential in the new designs the Comments of one of the Conservatives on the Committee who like the others have to agree the New Library is wonderful, said "it looks a bit like a lot of bed springs". I can see what he means. (I have told him I will not name him in public so his secrete is safe with me)
IT IS JUST A GREAT SHAME SOME OF THE MONEY INVOLVED COULD NOT BE SPENT MORE IN THE SUBURBS OSCOTT.

Councillor John Beadman R.I.P

I have been out of touch for a few days due to ill health and have only recently learned of the death of Councillor John Beadman (Sutton New Hall).
John was a lovely man and we hit it off when we first met while signing our Council papers back in 2000. We served together on a number of committees and rarely if ever had differences of opinion. John was one on those genuine Councillors who put his residents first. It was not Johns style to make cheap political points or have a go at some one for the sake of it and when he spoke you listened. He was a true conservative and a true gentle man.
All my sympathy goes out to his family at this time.

Saturday, 1 August 2009

FLY POSTING ON THE INCREASE AGAIN IN

Sadly there has been a noticeable increase in fly posting in the Oscott area since the Council reduced the amount of time spent in the area by our Environmental Wardens.
Under our old warden Fly Posting was almost stopped, now you only have to go down any main road to see it. Not only is it unsightly but at times when it is put on road sign it can be quite dangerous.
I am already calling in fly posting complaint to the Council but if you let me know of any concerns they would be welcome. Tel 360 6486

Thursday, 30 July 2009

COOKSEY LANE BUS SHELTER TO GO




A bus shelter near 70 Cooksey Lane is to be removed following a decision by Centro Bus Shelter appeals committee. The bus shelter near 70 Cooksey lane has been a long term magnet for antisocial behavior in the area. It has been used as a goal post for full scale street football matches and as a den for local youngsters. It has also been vandalised on a number of occasions. I also know the Police were concerned about the problems caused by this bus shelter.
While I regret that bus shelters have to be removed, there are times for the sake of local residents this has to happen.
Both Councillor Barbara Dring and I have worked with the residents for some time on this matter and recently Oscott third Councillor also got involved which enabled this matter to be considered by the Bus shelter committee (all three councillors in a ward must agree on a shelters removal)
The shelter is expected to be removed in a matter of months.
Lets hope those youths playing foot ball in the street and using this bus shelter will now start using the King George playing Fields for the football activities.

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

QUESLETT NATURE RESERVE ACTIVITY DAY DATE

The next Queslett Nature Reserve activity day will be Thursday August the sixth. The meeting place will be the Ashworth Road entrance at 10.am.
(for further details please ring 464 1869)

DUNEDIN ROAD UPDATE

I have had it confirmed today that the pavement in Dunedin Road will be rebuilt and replaced starting Mid January. When that is finished (approx 12 weeks) work should start on replacing the carriage way. I know many with suspicious minds may think this could be a simple electioneering tactic by the current Council administration, but I like to believe in coincidence and hope this is just what this is.
I am certainly pleased this work is to be carried out as I have been campaigning on this issue for many years as has my colleague Councillor Barbara Dring and others. Lets hope there are no more delays and this work gets done asap.