Love Stirchley More will take place from 14-16 February 2013 and will provide an alternative Valentine’s experience with a series of events celebrating and demonstrating love which have been made for Stirchley and hosted by businesses there.
Singing, comedy, art, a Love Boat, a new love seat for Stirchley Park… Organised by Stirchley Prospects and Stirchley Happenings, lots to experience and chances to join in!
More details at http://stirchleyprospects.wordpress.com/
City Council sets new boundaries for Stirchley’s retail centre – and leaves out some favourite shops
As part of Birmingham’s Big City Plan, a new Shopping & Local Centres Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) was adopted in March 2012. The aims of this document are to
- Define the boundaries of each local centre in Birmingham’s hierarchy of shopping centres
- Define the primary shopping area, where the main retail uses are concentrated
- Set out policies to maintain the primary retail function of the centres.
According to the document – available at http://www.birmingham.gov.uk/spdlocalcentres – Stirchley’s primary retail core stretches from Twyning Road in the north to Elm Tree Road/Mayfield Road in the south, taking in the Tesco site but not the Arvin Meritor (ASDA) site. This means that some of Stirchley’s best known and established shops now fall outside the main shopping area – these include Wards the greengrocers, Ash Tree Pharmacy, Stirchley Wines and Spirits, Pandora’s Box and newcomers the Birmingham Bike Foundry. During the consultation period, Tesco objected to this proposed boundary and requested that the primary retail core should terminate north of Hazelwell Road, and although the City Council did not yield to Tesco’s demands on this occasion, their final definition of Stirchley’s retail core does not appear to reflect the High St as experienced by local people, and this document may even undermine the sustainability of some of the independent shops that give Stirchley its unique character and distinctive charm.
Thanks to everyone who took time out from having fun to add their thoughts and suggestions to our ideas board and maps. Hazelwell and Stirchley Parks drew the most attention, but we also identified some underused spaces and opportunities to improve east west links across Stirchley. Here’s a quick run down of our findings:
More play equipment – rope/tree climbing frames, zip wire, trim trail, big logs
Skate park for older kids – another set of goalposts – a tennis court
More dog waste bins, especially near playground
Outdoor gym equipment next to the playground for adults to exercise on (like Selly Park)
Create meadow and orchard next to River Rea by Hazelwell Rd (planned by FoHP)
More activities for young people from Pineapple Estate – needs funding
Public footpath linking Edwin Rd to Newlands Rd needs clearing and better lighting
Build friends group – could Farm Foods work with the Park?
Play area – skate park – Graffiti wall – beach– landscaping
Urban farm and café (like St Pauls in Balsall Heath) – independent café and play area behind Farm Foods would draw people into park and community centre
Create an orchard – plant bulbs
Keep bowling green – use the Kwik Save site as a car park for the new community centre
Comment: “This area feels isolated/closed/not safe”
Open spaces in general
Sow meadow flowers in areas of grassland – leave uncut to support bees
Use green spaces for activities for residents of all ages
Fruit trees/fruit shrubs/edible gardens – use even small spaces for growing vegetables
Lifford Canal Basin – strengthen the link with the River Rea – create a stop on the River Rea cycle route and canal side walk to Kings Norton – repair canal towpath
Green space next to Riverbrook Drive – fly tipping a problem
Green space on Pineapple Grove – swings/roundabouts/railings would increase use
Create recreation area between TASCOS and River Rea for young people and older citizens
Empty green space at the bottom of Fordhouse Lane next to derelict fireworks shop (rats)
Regenerate derelict Lifford Curve site
Potential to develop/improve embankment between Oxford St and Lea Yield Close – canal bank to the rear of Oxford St is a great view point
Footpath linking Fordhouse Lane to the rear of Falkland Croft – this was created around 20 – 30 yrs ago but is now impassable
A village square
More community events – street parties, celebrate local heritage, reinstate the Stirchley Carnival – involve residents
Better shops – a good coffee shop anywhere in Stirchley, pop-up shops supported by supermarkets and city council to regenerate High St
Community facilities – open Stirchley Library outside regular hours for community activities, staffed by volunteers – reopen the Friends Meeting House
More activities and facilities for teenagers – a cinema – and older residents – exercise classes
A nursery for babies and toddlers
Drive-in cinema on vacant site – car boot sales
Cycles routes that are meaningful – safe links to parks/school – set up a cycle hire/repair/tuition scheme
Make more pedestrian links joining east and west Stirchley – create green link across Tesco site – new footbridge over River Rea connecting Hazelwell estate to Pershore Rd
Better access for mobility scooters and wheelchairs, particularly with crossing Dog Pool Lane to reach Cannon Hill Park
Improvements to the junction of Fordhouse Lane and Pershore Road
Paths on Pineapple Estate not well maintained by the council
Residents parking scheme for Newlands Rd
Well, What a fantastic day it was, bit of a rough start, wrong key to the gate, were all there waiting at 7.30am, to get in, but, it wasn’t long until we found one.
The Army of Stirchley volunteers sprang into action, by 11am, it was beginning to look like a fun day was going to take place, the caterers turned up early followed by charity stalls, community groups entertainers and trade stands, fairground rides and inflatables, gazebos went up, ducks got primed ready for a day of swimming, councillors put their waders on (there is a rumour that councillor Sealy will wear his in the council chamber) Don’t know who started that.
Well, 12noon came, and it was a very quiet start at first, but boy did that change, by 12.45, things were really buzzing, a rough estimate was that over 1300 people were in the park and the best thing was, every face had a smile on it, are you doing it again next year, we were asked?
Well I think so, just look out for the posters etc. next year.
I have one or two thank you’s to make, it’s a bit like an Oscar list, but please take the time to read it, and if you won one of the fabulous prizes we had, say thank you to the business that provided it.
I would like to thank the following for donating the prizes.
Wards, Stirchley wines and spirits, Oakton estates, midland Vac, Travis Perkins, St Andrews Healthcare, National Express west Midlands, Tesco Five Ways, Wickes, Magnet, Fitness First, music Exchange, Midland computer exchange, Empire Garage, Hearts and flowers, Joshuashaun, Akash Tandoori, printigo, Dutch embassy, venture Bikes, Sasha hair design, Selco, Jades hairdresser, Elliegance, ADI (Kings Norton) mirror image, Stirchley Newsagent, Gents, ash tree Pharmacy, Printigo, Powder Coatings, Asda, Akrams, Empire Cinema (Rubery) p.walker Ariel’s (Kidderminster) Fallons, Stirchley Neighbourhood Forum, Headmasters (Cotteridge) .
I would also like to thank, Signarama (Cotteridge) for providing us with three five foot x two foot full colour banners, so that we can advertise the event, to Roxie and Kerry from Stirchley Happenings for designing the flyers and negotiating the cooperation with the T.A.S.C.O.S social club, to pay half the printing bill for their advert on the flip side, for getting them printed at reasonable cost and delivered to me, dose everyone agree, that the art work is superb, also, I would like to thank the army of Stirchley volunteers who delivered them to your door, (not as easy as you think) also, thank you to Webb’s tool hire who has provided the hi vis vests we need for in the park and to printigo, who printed the forum logo on the back.
Last but not least, in no particular order.
Ron, Brian, Chris ,Peter , Jon, Brenda and Margaret my long suffering wife, who gave up their Saturday to help put the Fun Day together not forgetting Paula, who had a key to the gate padlock, when the wrong one was supplied (we got her out of bed).
Also, David Jee, Judith Jones, Syria (hope I have spelt your name correctly, who helped during the day.
And to some of the artists who gave their time to entertain us in the arena, like Elvis and Brian withey.
Also to Mick Jones from stirchley.co.uk, who allows us a lot of free space on his website.
Also to Karen Stevens from Birmingham City Council (Selly Oak Division) who put many hours into the fun day and to anyone else who I may have forgotten
Thanks to all
Stirchley Neighbourhood Forum
We’ve booked a stall for the Fun Day on Saturday, 12 – 4 pm in Hazelwell Park, and we’re looking for volunteers to come along and help out on the day. We’re using the event to promote the network, sign up new members and canvas opinions about Stirchley’s green and open spaces, which will inform our first project. We’ve got a map of Stirchley and we’ll be asking people to colour in the green spaces and add any comments about these spaces, or suggestions as to how they might be improved or added to. We have two volunteers to set up the stall and two/three volunteers to cover it for part of the afternoon but we could really do with a few more people. If you are able to spare half an hour please email the network on email@example.com and we can organise a timetable.
Many thanks and look forward to seeing you there!
The next SURN meeting is tonight, 8 pm at the TASCOS Club on Hazelwell Lane. We’ll be choosing our first project which will focus on Stirchley’s green and open spaces.