Thursday, 28 February 2013


I was pleased to be asked to attend the Rail Business Awards 2012 last night in London for Centro along with London Midland. Councillor Kath Hartley and I are working hard with this company as well as Centro to improve communications with the public.
For example  I had a good opportunity to discuss improving the Perry Barr and encouraging Cycle storage in various places through out the City.
 The London Midland Representative were very help full and it was interesting to meet Representative form other areas.
The meal its self was very nice and it was pleasing to see Centro in a joint venture with London Midland get a high recommendation award,  runners-up in Safety & Security Excellence at Rail. Well done to them.

This also included the See Something Say Something which I have also been helping to promote.
Helping to keep the cost of the event down was a consideration and an over night stay and a cheap rail tickets helped do that. It was also a good opportunity to learn more about the rail industry and how it effects the Public Transport user.

Wednesday, 27 February 2013


 With Spring allegedly fast approaching many hardy Oscott residents and some not so hardy residents may feel like getting on their bikes and enjoying some healthy exercise or getting to work and school for less money.
The Birmingham City Council may be able to help as they have a Cyclist route planner available on the internet.

The West Midlands cycle journey planner is an on-line route planner to help you plan your cycling trips across the West Midlands.
Plan your route by bike, get an estimated journey time, choose between the quietest, quickest or most recreational routes and link your cycling journey to public transport options. Just click a start and end point, or search for locations/postcodes and then click 'Plan journey' - it's that simple!

So why not give it a try.


I was pleased to hear Councillor Tahir Ali (Cabinet member for Dev elopement) confirm in the Council chamber yesterday 26th February there will be no reduction in the numbers of grit bins.
Oscott is a hilly ward and we need all the grit bins we can get during the winter. I have my time cut out at times checking to make sure there are filled as often as possible and last year I was able to get the Transportation department to chain a number of these bins to near by lampposts to stop them being tipped over.

Tuesday, 26 February 2013


I would like to thank all those Oscott residents who have been contacting me since last August regarding the proposed introduction of wheelie bins in Birmingham.

What ever your views I have passed them on to those making the decisions.

Councillor James Mackay (Cabinet member for green,safe smart city) has told me know other Councillor has contacted him as much on the issue on behalf of their residents.

It is not to late to have you concerns and views known I am happy to continue to pass them on and if you are on line there is a Birmingham City Council survey you can fill out on the subject of wheelie bins

Also see posts dated

14,15,18 & 31August 2012
14 September 2012
4,15 October 2012
9, January 2013
13, February 2013
18th February 2013

Monday, 25 February 2013


The Green waste service will start up onFebruary 25th sadly Green bags will not be supplied from the end of March

Green Waste Collections Resume for 2013
I would like to remind Oscott residents  that fortnightly green (garden) waste collections are set to resume on February 25 following the annual Winter break .

As a result of the Governments cuts to local government  the Birmingham City council’s now needs to save £102million in the 2013/14 financial year. This now means rolls of sacks will no longer be provided for this Green waste service from the end of March. From that point, households will therefore need to purchase their own sacks (available from most supermarkets and many other stores) to participate in the service.

The sacks, should be different to normal black refuse sacks – such as commonly sold green garden waste sacks – to ensure the garden waste can be identified and collected appropriately. It is also recommended that the sacks, as in previous years, should be left open when put out for collection, to aid their identification as green waste.

Compost bins can be purchased from or by calling 0845 130 6090.

This is very disappointing,  it is understood that the way things are today some cuts are needed due to the economic climate but there are very few options left when the Council forced to make such large such cuts in such a short time.


There are now a number of cycle lane in Birmingham and many other towns and cities in this country.
Oscott seems to have been left out however. With this in mind I have asked the Transportation department if there is any merit in introducing some of these Cycle lanes in Oscott?
I am clearly not an Transport Engineer my self but i would like to promote cycling as an alternative to driving as an option in the area.
I think in this day and age given our roads are getting busier we should try to promote cycling  in Oscott as an alternative to driving.
 In the past I have tried to help by trying to get the Toucan style Pedestrian crossings installed (eg Shady Lane) and have some cycle racks erected near our shopping areas.
Cycle Lanes for many Oscott roads clearly may not be possible but I think it is an issue worth looking into.
If you have any suggestions please let me know and I will pass them on to the Local District Transportation Engineers for them to consider.
My email or please ring 303 2039 and leave a message for me.

Saturday, 23 February 2013


The Oscott Ward Committee which comprises of (Chair) Councillor Barbara Dring, Councillor Tristan Chatfield and myself will be meeting on Wednesday 13th March at 7pm. The venue will be the 610 Community Centre. B44 9SH

This is an importunity to raise local issues of concern with your 3 Councillors and hear reports about the Oscott area from Council officers.


Yet again I met up with some Oscott residents when I attended the Integrated Transport Authorities "Your Public Transport Matters" event to. Walall is really popular with some Oscot residents when it comes to shopping.
At these evens normally held in shopping areas in the West Midlands area it is a chance to let Centro, NX and ITA Councillors know what your views are about Public Transport.
Clearly we can not always put right any concerns we hear about but we can insure the right people know about them.
Also attending this event were Birmingham Councillor Kath Hartley and Walsall Councillor Richard Worrall as well as Representatives from Bus Watch UK

Friday, 22 February 2013


Earlier this week I was sent as part of a delegation from the West Midlands Passenger Transport Authority including Councillor Kath Hartley, too Brighton for the day to investigate how the Brighton and Hove Bus Company do so well, receiving awards and so on for their services,
In order to save money it was a all in one day investigation but we were able to see how their bus operations rooms work and more importantly were able to use their buses and question bus users about their observations.
The B& H bus company although much smaller than the main ones in this area have a lot going for them. They are very focused on the passenger and their monitoring of service times and routes is very good. Their real time operation is also good.
 They also make excellent use of the bus lane systems in Brighton.Many of their buses were named after famous people who were connected with Brighton, which I would imagine makes it much easier to identify a bus should a user wish to make a complaint.They also had a very low Young peoples bus fare which was very impressive.
 Our finding will certainly be passed on to the Private bus operators in this area and Centro.
 If you get the chance to visit Brighton I can certainly recommend you use their buses.
From a personal point of view I was a little sad there was no time even to see the sea as every thing was at such a hectic pace but the B&H bus company were good hosts and were understandably very proud of their service to the public.


Amey are currently planting a number of trees in various roads in Oscott. These are by and large replacing trees taken out due to decease or to allow drop curbs to be installed.
While these new trees are to be welcomed I have found that Amey are making the same mistakes that were made many years ago, in that they are planting some tree in such away as they may stop people having drop curbs in the future.
New trees should be planted at the edge of a property which would then allow for a drop curb to be erected if required in the future without the resident having to pay for the trees removal.
If you have this problem let me know while the tree is not established and I will contact Amey on your behalf.
I have already been in touch with senior Amey managers regarding what should be basic common sense and asked them to review what some of the tree planing contractor are doing.

Thursday, 21 February 2013


The Girl Guides UK Brownies meet on Tuesday Evenings at the Mary Vale Centre Old Oscott Hill between 5.30 and 6.45pm.
They carry out a range of activities and events and the age range for girls is from 7 years old to 10years old.

Tuesday, 19 February 2013


I know from attending the last Your Public Transport Matters event in Walsall a number of Oscott residents do their shopping in Walsall and use the bus to get there.
The next such event is on Saturday 23rd February in Park Street Walsall City Centre. between 10am and noon.
This is a good opportunity to tell Centro Officer, NX representatives and I.T.A Local Councillors your views about Public Transport. There are also free bus time tables and information available.

Member from Bus users UK also often come along why not consider joining them.

Monday, 18 February 2013


I have received scores of comments through emails, letters, my tell me your concerns cards, comments when I am in the street, Public meetings and so on.

I have passed them on whether they are for or against the idea of the introduction of the wheelie bins following the government funding initiative, to those making the decisions about the issue. I have done this in order that they can be added to the consultations going on.

It is not to late let me know your views and I will continue as I have been doing since August to pass them on I value you views and opinions all year around.

To contact me simply -         Email
Phone and leave me a message on 303 2039
or write to me C/o Birmingham City Council House, Birmingham B1 1BR

See  also posts dated
14,15,18 & 31August 2012
14 September 2012
4,15 October 2012
9, January 2013
13, February 2013

Saturday, 16 February 2013


Since the Oscott Councillors identified the Templeton to Old Oscott Hill right of way as a priority we have managed to get our Environmental organisation Jericho to give it a good spring clean and to monitor it.
They have now cut back over hanging bushes and brambles and have strimmed overgrown patches of stingers as well as carrying out a litter pick
Sadly given legal implications for this public right of way there is not much else that can be done to improve it. However for local residents and those children and parents using it to go to and fro to Mary Vale Junior and infant school for example we are doing our best to keep it tidy. It certainly looked a lot better today when I paid a visit then it did a few weeks ago.
I have also asked the Police to patrol this right of way as often as possible to prevent anti social behaviour and so on.


I some times get, cards, letters and (emails?) asking for help or assistance, which have no name and address on them.
In these circumstances they have to go to the back of the pile, clearly they will not be answered and often there is little I can do to be of assistance.because I can not check their contents.

If you are particularly concerned about confidentiality if you contact me simple state on your correspondence that it is in confidence and your details are to remain private and that will be the case.

The more information given the better it is when it comes to trying to deal with a concern.

Friday, 15 February 2013


I have only just realised the Perry Beeches Academy school celebrated its 75th anniversary on February 13th this year.
The school has certainly faced a number of challenges over the years including being burnt down and rebuilt.
The school is clearly on the way up these days and offers a wide range of activities for the youngsters who go there as well as an excellent standard of teaching.

The current modern clean and airy buildings can not compare with the old almost Colditz like school buildings and was it only 1999 when  Perry Beeches Secondary School was designated a school in challenging circumstances and had a severe staffing crisis.?

Yes the school has come on a long way in just a few years and I hope it will continue to do so.


Dog owners who let their pets foul Birmingham’s pavements and parks could soon face fines of up to £75 under new powers being adopted by city councillors.
New control orders will also tackle owners of ‘latch key’ dogs – those let out on their own – and limit owners to walking a maximum of four pooches at a time.
Members of Birmingham City Council’s licensing committee have unanimously agreed to take on the new powers saying they are fed-up with complaints from residents over dog fouling and aggressive dogs.
Chairwoman Barbara Dring (Lab, Oscott) said: “There are few things which upset residents more than dog mess in the street or on playing fields. It is also a health hazard.
“Many dog owners are responsible, but anything we can do to make those irresponsible ones stop is welcomed.”
Under current rules a £50 fine can be issued, but enforcement powers are limited – wardens cannot demand dogs are removed from children’s playgrounds.
The proposed dog control orders will not only make fouling on the pavement an offence, but also cover school fields, parks and children’s playgrounds. It will also become an offence for an owner not to give their name and address to a warden.
During 2012 the council received 1,042 complaints about dog mess and a further 3,108 requests for help to deal with stray dogs. According to official surveys the issue is a ‘big problem’ for a quarter of residents.
There are also problems with dogs routinely let out without a lead - one unnamed owner has had his dog seized and impounded 49 times, despite having to pay a £25 fee to have it returned.
Council animal welfare officer Vikki Allwood said: “This particular dog owner is difficult to deal with and now refuses to pay the statutory claim fee.”
The limit on the number of dogs being walked at a time is aimed at professional walking services.
The new powers are backed by police, the RSPCA, the Dogs Trust and Birmingham Dogs Home. Funding is now being sought for a public consultation over the dog control orders.

Both Councillor Tristan Chatfield and myself are delighted our colleague Councillor Barbara Dring has made progress on this issue through her Licensing committee. By working together locally in Oscott we intend addressing this menace

Thursday, 14 February 2013


 Bag and bin your dogs mess or take it home.
 Doggy bin bags can be bought for £1 a roll in some local shops

Yet again the dog mess seen on our pavements and open spaces in Oscott is a disgrace.
All dog owners know it is not only unpleasant to let their dogs mess remain on our streets and open spaces but it can result in dangerous deceases for young children.
The vast majority of dog owners are getting their dogs mess up but there are still to many owners who are not being so responsible. They are making things worse for the considerate dog owners who wrongly get the blame at times.

My Ward Colleagues and I are constantly complaining to authorities ( I have been onto the cabinet member responsible for dealing with this issue) about the issue and I have had a number of litter bins put in place to help deal with the situation. (Bag it and bin it)

But at the end of the day it is up to the dog owners them selves, do not let your dogs foul on the street and on foot ball pitches like those at the Burford Road Playing Fields,Glenmead Playing Field and The Aldridge Road Recreation Ground. (I am trying to get some more noticable No dog fouling signs erected at these locations.). The Bandywood estate is another problem area.

I am asking the Dog Warden Service to be more proactive in this area and they have assured me they will be in the area as much as possible and if spotted those who do not remove there dogs mess will be dealt with. There is no excuse bag it, take it home or bin it.


A number of cars in the Oscott area have been clamped recently by officers from the DVLA.
If you have not  taxed your car beware you could end up with a clamp and an embarrassing notice on your vehicle.
If you are not surecheck you tax is up today or if not go and pay it before it is to late better be safe than sorry.


While I accept that record levels of rain last year and the recent snow and  the current snow has not helped, the state of many of the grass verges in Oscott is not good enough.
Many of the verges are badly churned up or are slippy and very uneven. This is a problem for car passengers getting out of cars and for those pedestrians trying to cross roads.
Builders rubbish and other items are also at times left for weeks on end on grass verges, killing the grass and this practise needs to be stamped out.

I have called of Amey the Private company given the long term contract to maintain our roads by the previous Council Administration, to work with the Highways department to try and resolve these problems.

We do need grass verges as they help soak away access rain water but verges should be either repaired, protected or resurfaced depending on their location and condition. Drivers should not drive over them especially when they are soaked by rain and more thought needs to be given to pedestrians.

Wednesday, 13 February 2013


Along with a number of other Councillors on the ITA, Officers from Centro. NX and members of Bus users UK I attended todays Birmingham "You are Your Public Transport" event at Snow Hill Station.

It may have been a bitterly cold day with snow falling but dozens of Public Transport users had an opportunity to meet with Councillors who are actively involved in trying to improve Public Transport services throughout the West Midlands.
Members of the public were also given a chance to fill out surveys regarding public Transport and to be given Timetables and other information.
Scores of Commuters From Birmingham and the surrounding area took the opportunity to have their say. They will be a number of these events coming up in the future across the West Midland area.


I popped into the Mary Vale Community centre to their elderly residents luncheon club yesterday. They are do really well there was a talk on from Age UK.
If you or anyone you know is interested they meet on a Tuesday Lunchtime at the Mary Vale Community Centre Old Oscott Hill.


As you may be aware long before it became popular to do so I was asking your views in Oscott about the idea of having wheelie bins*. Scores of residents have contacted me with their views for and against and these views have been passed to those who will be making the decision.
If you would still like me to pass on your views whether you are in favour or not of wheelie bins please let me know and I will continue to pass on your views.
You can
Write to me C/O the Birmingham City Council House, Birmingham B1 1BR
Em me
or leave me a message on 303 2039
 -----                    ----------             -------------------                ----------------
The Council have tried to answer some of the questions residents have and I have listed those questions and answers below.

Will the  DCLG (Governments) announcement of funding mean we will have wheeled bins in Birmingham?
Yes. This matter was debated by the city council’s Cabinet on Monday 30th July 2012 and again on the 10th December 2012. The city council has been awarded over £29 million by Central Government to introduce a wheeled bin collection service across Birmingham.
Will the Council look at the experience of Councils who have already introduced wheeled bins?
Wheeled bins are used in over 82% of all councils in England and there is a great deal of experience and knowledge about what works and what doesn’t – Birmingham will learn from this previous experience. This isn’t a unique project and all of the major cities in England already use wheeled bins.
What size bin will I receive?
It will be essential to ensure that households receive an appropriate sized container for their needs. It is recognised that some households, for example larger households, would need larger containers. The council has not determined which size containers will be used but would look at what other local authorities do and determine how best to meet the needs of residents, and the council.
How many bins will I receive?
Up to 3 bins – one for waste, one for recycling and one for green waste (if required possibly at a charge of £35). We will be testing how the bins will be used in selected areas of the city. Adjustments may need to be made for individual property types and roads.
I don’t think my property is suitable for a wheeled bin
We appreciate that not all properties are suitable for a wheeled bin collection service. Following the models from other councils, these include some properties that:
  • Have a steep slope / many steps between the house and the street where it would be difficult to move a wheeled bin up or down
  • Have no access or very limited access to the rear of the property, such as in some types of terraced housing
  • Have no ground floor access, such as flats above shops and some maisonettes.
In these circumstances, other councils make alternative arrangements such as retaining the collection system that was previously used.
What about elderly or disabled residents how will they manage?
We recognise that some residents would find it difficult or impossible to move a wheeled bin, such as a wheelchair user, and we will make alternative arrangements either through the provision of an ‘assisted’ service or again, through providing a different type of collection service that meets the households needs.
Why are we changing black sacks if it already works well?
Whilst we appreciate your view that the current black sack system works perfectly well, independent research has shown that where a wheeled bin system has been introduced, recycling rates have increased. Birmingham needs to reduce the amount of waste that we produce and to reuse and recycle more. Furthermore the current system causes litter due to bags being ripped open by rodents, other animals and birds with the contents strewn about the street. There is also a cost implication
When will the bins be introduced?
The bid to the DCLG outlined a 2 to 3 year timetable for the full procurement and roll-out of the bins. We intend to implement a pilot in spring 2013 in two wards looking at different options. The wards to be selected will be determined shortly.
Will my collection day change?
It is possible when wheeled bins are rolled-out that collection days may change, however it is not possible at this stage to give an indication of what those changes could be. All changes to days would be kept to a minimum.
Will wheeled bins result in redundancies?
No. It is anticipated the introduction will not cause job losses.
Times are tough. Couldn’t you be spending this on something more worthwhile?
The grant funding that the city council has been successful in obtaining from the DCLG is specifically awarded to enable the city to maintain weekly collections of residual waste. This funding cannot be used for other purposes.
I live in a Conservation Area. You simply cannot impose wheeled bins on areas that have such a rich heritage. I hope that you will exempt us from these eyesores.
Each area will be looked at individually to see whether it will be suitable for wheeled bins. The improvements to waste collection are expected to improve the tidiness of the streets in Birmingham and reduce the amount of litter which is currently attributable to the existing bagged residual and box recycling collections.
Will you be conducting a survey?
We will ensure that there is community involvement and engagement and will harness views through a wide range of organisations and forums including an on-line survey for all residents and consultation through District Committees.
Can I have a composter, rather than a green waste bin? It would save you the collection cost, and help me produce compost for my garden!
This is a good idea and will be put forward and considered as part of the implementation plan.
Who is responsible for keeping the bins clean?
The experience of other local authorities who have implemented this type of collection methodology is that residents place bagged waste into the wheeled bins, and therefore there is minimal ongoing need to clean. If cleaning is required then it is the resident’s responsibility to undertake this.
Why are you not proposing to take food waste separately?
The council is currently considering the feasibility of a separate food waste collection. In the future it may also be possible to co-collect food waste with garden waste and the 3 bin proposed would support this method of collection. This is not part of the funding received as part of the DCLG bid. A separate consultation with residents would be undertaken if this option was considered further.
It is my understanding all these questions are still being considered as part of the consolation process and the answers may be changed.*

*See also my posts dated Jan 12th 2013
Dec 4th,Oct15th,Oct4th,Sept14th,Aug31st, Aug15th,Aug 14,Aug10th 2012

Italics my own

Tuesday, 12 February 2013


Have been chasing up getting rid of the large tree which has come down in the Queslett Nature Reserve right across the main path (ASDA end).
I have been assured by the tree surgeons who have been out to see it the tree will be removed soon.
In the mean time take care when trying to get past it.


A Number of Oscott Carriage ways are breaking up badly due to the recent snow and ice.
My Colleagues Councillors Barbara Dring and Tristan Chatfield are along with myself battling to get Amey (the private contractor given the job of repairing our streets for the next 25 years by the previous Council administration) to get many roads inspected and the work needed done.

Cooksey Lane is an example its carriage way is breaking up a number of pot holes and cracks are appearing and due to the weight of the buses which use it they are getting worse by the day.
We will keep pressure on Amey to try and get them to sort this road out.


Thanks to those of you are sending me emails with questions or concerns about Oscott in them.
Although I can not promise to resolve all the issues and concerns I hear about I do read your emails and try to do what I can to help.
However there are times when I have to ask you to be patient because I do get a lot of emails and in these tough times it can also take me some time to get a response for you.
My email address is, you can also leave me a message on 303 2039.

I am also on Twitter

Monday, 11 February 2013


Clearing ice and snow from pavements

  The Highways department does not normally salt footways but where resources permit will work with Councils during prolonged periods of snow and ice to clear footways in busy town centres and pedestrian areas
People often ask me if legally they can clear snow and ice. The fact is there’s no law stopping you from clearing snow and ice on the pavement outside your home or from public spaces.
In 2010, the Attorney General of Northern Ireland advised if you clear snow/ice carefully you are unlikely to be held liable.
Commercial property owners in particular should make sure that they have adequate supplies of salt in place to ensure the safety of employees and visitors.
There's no law stopping you from clearing snow and ice on the pavement outside your home or from public spaces. If you clear snow and ice carefully you are unlikely to be held liable if it is done with care.

Tips on clearing ice and snow

  • clear ice/snow early in the day: Loose snow is easier removed than hard snow which has packed together from people walking on it
  • use salt or sand – NOT water: If you use water to melt the snow, it may refreeze and turn to black ice which is invisible and very slippery
  • take care where you move the snow: When you are shovelling snow, take care where you put it so it doesn’t block people’s paths or drains
  • prevent slips: Pay extra attention to clear ice and snow from steps and steep pathways – you might need to use more salt on these areas


During a recent meeting I organised with the Booths Lane developers Persimmons (which included representatives from the Oscott Residents Association and Friends of Queslett Nature Reserve it was explained that the new section of road being build  by the developers needs to be opened as soon as possible.
Many residents in the Booths, Land Bowman Road area feel marooned because they have to travel much further to get to the Aldridge Road for example.

Developers while very sympathetic have had issues with the recent bad weather which has slowed the work down. The houses must be build along the new road before the developers can safely allow residents to use the road. This is due to health and safety advice.  They are still hoping for the road to be opened by the end of the year. I will continue to monitor its progress on behalf of residents.
The developers have also agreed to remove some rubbish left at the corner of Bowman Road and Booths Lane following their snow clearance operation.

The land scape work and tree planting on the northern edge of the site is nearly complete. 
The foot path which is now diverted partly into the Queslett Nature Reserve needs to made more weather proof and I have asked the developers to consider putting in drainage channels and a surface of chippings. They are to go away and look into this proposal. The developers wish to help where they can the reserve.


I would like to thank those who attended my Bus themed surgery Councillors Surgery on Saturday. I hope the bus time ables and other information came in handy.
 I will pass on the concerns I heard during the meeting to Centro . For example the need for a direct bus to One stop Shopping Centre, missing buses (997) in morning, the need for the 651 to go into the Bowman Road area . Other issues raised included. there should be an earlier 33 bus, to help cleaners and shop workers get to town to do their work, there are to many buses on the 28 route, following each other and so on.

If you have any Public Transport Concerns for this area please email on or phone 303 2039 ask for me and leave a message.

Saturday, 9 February 2013


Birmingham City Council's Debt Advice Team

Deal With Your Debts - Debt Advice Team 303 2087
Thousands of people every year, for whatever reason, get into debt. One in four people now use loans or credit cards to meet the basic costs of living. This situation could mean that you get behind with your regular bills such as rent, council tax, phone, electricity or gas.

The Debt Advice Team takes a realistic and practical approach to helping people who are experiencing severe debt problems. Over 2,500 clients make use of their service every year. They can help improve the quality of your life by developing a realistic and sensible debt repayment programme. Their experienced debt advisers offer a structured approach to managing severe personal debt by:
  • maximising income (with in and out of work benefits)
  • providing budget advice
  • preparing a full debt repayment plan
  • talking to the people you owe money to.

If you have money worries or need some advice please call the Debt Advice Line on 0121 303 2087. One of their advisers will assess your situation, offer you advice on your particular circumstances and, if necessary, arrange an appointment for you.

A number of residents from the Oscott area are really feeling the pinch and need support in these tough times.
If you are, I would certainly recommend that you should not be  tempted to use Loan Sharks and do not put off dealing with your debts without taking advice.
You could also consider using a accredited Credit unions which can help you with your borrowing and spending.


Oscott Councillor Barbara Dring, chairman of the licensing and public protection committee at Birmingham City Council, which oversees the England Illegal Money Lending Team, said: “Loan sharks are motivated only by greed and we are continuing to crack down on this crime. They extort and exploit the vulnerable, trap people in spiralling debt and cause nothing but misery. We would urge people to turn away from loan sharks and report the crime if they have been a victim. Call 0300 555 2222 to speak to an investigator from the England Illegal Money Lending Team in confidence.”


Oscott Councillor Tristan Chatfield is asking people to take part in the Great Midland Fun Run and help out Local Charities.

Tristan will be on the run him self on behalf of the George Collier Memorial Fund ( a charity helping to challenge Asthma, improving awareness of it and improving health care of those who suffer from it.)

Tristan has been helping this charity for many years and is dedicated to helping those like Kim Douglas who do so much for this charity.
If you would like to take part in the race or would like to support the George Collier Memorial Fund please ring 0121 681 9585


I would like to remind everyone that the next Birmingham, Your Public Transport Matters event takes place at Snow Hill Station between 10am and 12am on Wednesday 13th March.
This is you chance to meet with Councillors representing the Integrated Transport Authority, Centro Officers,Bus Champions  and representatives from the Private Transport companies (NX ans so on).
There could be major changes ahead for bus users in North Birmingham so now is the time to have your say.
Tell us your views on Public transport.

I will holding a bus themed Councillors surgery (today) Saturday 10th February at the 610 Community Centre at 10.30am.

Friday, 8 February 2013


It is good to see the Hawthorn Road Post office is to revamp and is being made into one of the new main style branches. The Post office will re open on March 18th 2013 with the new look
Some of the benefits will include longer opening hours and a new open plan appearance..
Those of us who have fought long and hard to save and improve our Post offices will welcome this news. It will be a big improvement for the users of this Post office old and young.

* The new opening hours from March 18th will be
Mon to Friday 6.30am to 19.30pm
Sat                   9.00am to 19.30pm
Sun                  9.00am to 13.00


Birmingham Age Concern operates a Day Care Centre at 277 Birdbrook Road in Oscott (opposite the Kingfisher Public House. Over the last year or so the building has been fully modernised.and is suitable for those with mobility problems. They also cater for those with dementia and long term health problems.

Age Concern operate a open referral system for people over 55.
The Centre open Monday to Friday and offers a range of services. I know from my visits there is a warm friendly environment with trained staff. Age Uk have their own mini buses. They offer fun activities and information support.

To find out more about the excellent support offered by Birmingham Age UK ring 437 0033

If you can not resist a bargain and  want to support Birmingham Age UK why not pop in to the Age UK charity shop on Birchfield Road (near One Stop)

Age Concern Birmingham
520 Birchfield Road
Birmingham, B20 3JE

Thursday, 7 February 2013


B.F.A.B Streetdance

Are you intrested in poppin,lockin,hiphop,house and breakin?and loads more then this is the dance crew for you.... fun for all ages and abilities. You can also meet new friends and build confidence.
Dances are taught by an fully qualified accredited teacher in level 4 degree (diploma)in streetdance (performance arts).....

Contact details O7407 865 045

Location 610 Community Centre


After a number of years campaigning with the help of my 2 Ward Colleagues and the Housing department there will now be new gates erected at the entrance of the Garage area near 228 /232 Beeches Road.
This small Council garages site has had a lot of trouble with gatherings of youths and fly tipping.
The new gates are expected to be erected within weeks should help prevent these problems.
The funding will be from the Oscott HLB.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013


The Perry Beeches Academy are trying to set up a Community Task Force (like the Neighbourhood Tasking Group which is made up of resident groups and other organisation meeting with the Police) and is for Young people to get their voices heard in the local area.
 It is hoped  to address community safety issues in the Oscott Ward and surrounding areas.
 The young people and staff ran  four theme groups today, each one led by a Year 11 student.

Bob Jones the West Midlands Police Commissioner was asked to go along to discuss his new role and a number of Local Police officers and some local residents where present to discuss issues with the young people present. There followed a lively debate.
 I was very pleased to be asked to attend and found the views of the young people there very interesting.Many of the view's expressed will be fed back to the full Neighbourhood Tasking Group.

I think those of use who are a "little" older forget that young people are just as effected and concerned about crime and anti social behaviour as everyone else.


The 3 current Chairmen are all looking for new members for their groups

There will be a meeting of the Oscott Residents Association. Oscott Disability group and the Oscott Elderly Residents Group on Saturday March 9th at the 610 Community Centre (It will be their AGM's) THE MEETING WILL TAKE PLACE AT 10.30am AT THE 610 COMMUNITY CENTRE
I have been informed anyone wishing to be considered for any post in the above groups should contact 675 2349 one week in advance of the AGM's for further details.

The above groups campaign on issues such as the Environment, Community Safety, Matters of concern to disabled residents and the elderly. in the Oscott area.

If you would like to be involved please cont the number above.

Help improve you local community


Local residents and Councillors from different parties past and present worked hard to get the pavements in Dunedin Road resurfaced. Sadly after just over 2 years a Gas Company have decided and been allowed to dig up this pavement.
With these facts in mind I have Called on Amey the Company awarded the Streets upgrade contract by the last Council Administration, to ensure they monitor the work going on and even more importantly ensure the finished repairs to the pavement are of good quality.
 The reinstatement of the pavement should be of good quality not merely satisfactory. (this should apply to all the works carried out in the area by the Gas Company.)

Tuesday, 5 February 2013


Given the frost today I have been out and about again checking grit bins are full.
I can report the 23 I have checked in Oscott today are all full or close to being.
I would remind residents this grit is only for the carriage way.

If you know of a empty Grit bin in Oscott please give me a ring on 303 2039 and leave me a message.

Monday, 4 February 2013


I will be holding a "bus themed Councillors Surgery on Saturday at the 610 Community Centre Kingstanding Road  Road. This will start at 10.45am.
If you have a concern regarding public Transport relating to the Oscott area why nor pop in and tell me. about it.

Saturday, 2 February 2013


I have now been assured that the railings which were erected on the outer edge of the Kingstanding Circle Island (KFC side) will have gates fitted within the next week or so.
Sadly some motorist have been parking on the island carriage way rather than on near by car parks. The Police have been very worried about this and this is why the railings have been erected.
The gates will allow deliveries to the shops but in a very controlled way. The traders will have keys for the gates.
Customers are urged to use the near by car parks which are on yards away.

Friday, 1 February 2013


It is always pleasant to be able to conclude a case. For example last year I was informed by a couple of cyclists that the cycle storage racks located at the Kingstanding  Circle, KFC side were positioned in such a way as to mean when push bikes were chained to them, they over hung the carriage way.
This I am pleased to say has been rectified today and the positioning off them has been adjusted.
I now hope cyclists will have the confidence to use them more often and it is important to try and promote the use of alternative transportation like bikes and buses in this area which is clogged with traffic.


The Bandywood Job Club

Need help and advice searching for work or training

The Jobs club and advice sessions have helped many people back into work, training or apprenticeships. The Jobclub runs every week on Thursday afternoons

Back to Work ICT Every Thursday 1pm to 3pm

Update your IT skills, create a professional looking CV, sign up and learn how to use email or just spend some time doing looking through some of the many internet jobsites.

Location Saint Marks Church Bandywood Crescent B44 9JX

The Bandywood Project receives funding from the Oscott Ward Community Chest