Mobile Recycling wagon coming to Calthorpe Park

17/09/2021 at 8:50 am | Posted in Recycling | Leave a comment

Monday 20th September will see a first visit by a mobile recycling wagon to Edward Road, Balsall Heath, at Calthorpe Park . People can bring out their unwanted items and the crew will help you put them into the right compartment for recycling; cardboard, clothing, electrical goods and small furniture. Operates morning 7am to 12 .00

This is part of a drive against anti-fly-tipping by the City Council, to give people a positive way to get rid of unwanted stuff. However, a lot of it will still go into the “crusher” vehicle, and so to the incinerator. But in other towns, such as Bristol, you would have a fully separated recycling collection by a wagon like this, coming down your street every week.

Our Council is testing what the response to the new wagon is from local people, so please use it. Many people don’t have car or don’t have time to drive to the “tip”, so this is your chance.


Be paid to get rid of your car

04/09/2021 at 7:12 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Clean Air Zone Scrappage and Travel Scheme enables people who work in the City Centre and who earn less than £30,000 a year. to scrap a vehicle that is subject to the Clean Air charge. In exchange, you will receive £2,000 credit towards a compliant cleaner vehicle or £2,000 as a ‘mobility’ credit to use on public transport via a Swift Card .

This may be very useful to people in areas like Balsall Heath, who want to change how they travel into the city centre, and avoid paying the new charge. More details are at the Brumbreathes website

National Express is making bus travel cheaper and easier by dropping most of its fares,

Cycle Hire arrives

05/07/2021 at 5:26 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Racks of bikes for hire are offering a new way to get around the city for people in Balsall Heath and adjoining areas.

The West Midlands Cycle Hire scheme has put in some at Cheddar Road,, beside the Rea Valley Cycle Route. This goes from the city centre to Cannon Hill Park and beyond. It will suit visitors and those residents who do not have anywhere to store a bike at home. Many people are already enjoying trying them out.

Back on the Bus

25/06/2021 at 8:50 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Bus fares are being reduced, to encourage people to use buses again. The fares will fall from July to the level they were in 2012, at £4 for a day ticket. You can use cash, a, contactless card, or a phone app to make it easy to pay. The 50 bus through Balsall Heath to the city centre runs every 4 minutes . More about fares

Most adults have now been vaccinated and are less worried about the virus, so public transport is again a safe alternative to the car and a bus can carry as many people as 75 cars. I see that the buses are being cleaned very thoroughly. The are often new ones, because National Express has invested in low emission buses with a cleaner engine,. These do not have to pay the new Clean Air charge, which is £8 on all older vehicles that enter the city centre, inside the Middleway. More on CAZ

A new option is to cycle with the new West Midlands Cycle hire scheme which offers racks of bikes on the streets . A final factor reducing the need to drive is that many office workers can work online at home and not commute every day as they did before COVID19.

Take large items to the tip

11/06/2021 at 10:10 am | Posted in Recycling, Streets | Leave a comment

Householders can now use a van to take large items to Household Recycling Centres in Birmingham. This may help with the problem of mattresses, beds, fridges and furniture being dumped on street corners in Balsall Heath and similar areas. Commercial vans cost £78, but if you can use your own or a friend’s van it should be free to enter, if you have booked a slot in advance. Both mattresses and fridges can be recycled for the materials. Fridges contain a chemical that is really bad for the atmosphere, so you should not dismantle it yourself. Some suppliers of new mattresses will take the old one away in the delivery van for a small fee.

Of course, if the items are still usable then people can consider giving it to a charity such as Betel or CT, so that a low income family benefit. If you can get to Sutton Coldfield then the Re-users can take a wide variety of items including waste wood. One way to get use of a van could be to join the Co-wheels car club.

Council website


Bikes Wanted

22/04/2021 at 10:22 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Bike Project, located in the Old Print Works in Balsall Heath, refurbishes bikes and gives them to refugees. This gives them a much-needed means of transport and also exercise. Some of the donated bikes are sold, to help fund the project.

The project takes any bike of any size and in any condition, as long as the frame isn’t cracked, dented or snapped and there is no more than 25% rust – they love a challenge, but can’t resurrect a write-off! Any queries or offers, with opening times please contact:

Kings Heath Farmers market on Saturday May 1st, the Bike Project will be collecting unwanted bikes both children’s and adult size in the Kings Heath, Village Square between 10am and 2pm.

About The Bike Project You can donate on line

Future City Plan

23/03/2021 at 6:42 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Only a few days remain to comment on this vison for 2040 from Birmingham City Council planners, closing at the end of Friday 26th March. The idea is to join inner city neighbourhoods, including Balsall Heath and Highgate, onto the city centre, as “Central Birmingham”. This involves reducing the barrier of the Middleway, with crossings for pedestrians and cyclists. Green spaces are to be linked up, and even space for food growing is mentioned.

However, it is also about attracting inward investment and new developments, with perhaps the danger of pricing out existing residents and businesses. The Balsall Heath Development Plan needs to be supported as the expression of local community’s aspiration for a “sustainable community”. BHIOP will make a submission, saying these things, based on our work over many years – and so can you… Consultation; Future City Plan at BeHeard

Town Square for Balsall Heath

02/03/2021 at 5:02 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The deadline for your views on the Town Square is the end of Friday 5th March. Changes can start this summer 2021 with some small improvements. Longer term, the Town Square proposals would involve making more space for pedestrians and cyclists, without widening the roads. Car parking space to be re-organised. It should be possible to make this fit with funding for bus priority along the A435 that was discussed in 2019, since when the pandemic has made any narrowing of the footways impossible. There are access issues to be resolved with the Town Square, but the impact of traffic overall should be reduced and the approach is similar to the centres of Moseley and Kings Heath. Picture below is the location in April 2018 when traffic was diverted for one day. The Plan and the Survey for you to make your submission are at Beheard

Date labels waste food

29/01/2021 at 4:59 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Often food that has passed its ‘Best Before’ date is perfectly safe to eat for weeks, or even months afterwards. Date label confusion causes a great deal of food to be wasted. The “Too Good To Go” campaign aims to help people to better understand whether produce is safe to eat . “Look, Smell, Taste, Don’t Waste” is the slogan, endorsed by 25 leading food brands.

Not throwing away good food saves you money, saves on producing and packaging and on waste disposal as well. Some useful information about the meaning of Best Before, Sell By and Use By dates is at Too Good To Go


Simple energy advice

03/01/2021 at 11:01 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

There is a good website that shows easy ways to cut your gas and electric bills, without feeling cold, see Video

Balsall Heath has many older homes that need a lot of insulation work to hold the heat. Blocking draughts is very important, and I have draught stripped my front and back doors. Lowering heating control by just 1 C can save 10% on heating over a winter.

The website has advice for tenants , as well as improvements that homeowners can make. There is also information about grants and an advice phone number to ring. You can check also with the Energy Savings Trust website

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