Cycle facilities for Balsall Heath

13/07/2017 at 1:19 pm | Posted in Cycling | Leave a comment

Cyclists gathered at The Old Print Works, Moseley Road on Saturday July 8th for the launch of its new cycle facilities.Councillor Tony Kennedy began by cutting the ribbon and a short speech, explaining how the facilities had been paid from the City Council’s Cycling Revolution budget. OPW is a Top Cycle Location.
The new facilities include cycle parking in front of the Ort Café and GAP Arts, with additional parking in the courtyard to the rear of the Old Print Works. In addition, we have a repair station, which includes a bike work stand with a range of tools, and a cycle pump, so useful for all those odd jobs and repairs and punctures while you are out and about.
The Old Print Works is run by a charity and these facilities are helping them to be much more sustainable.

‘Stand and Deliver’. We then went on a guided cycle ride around Balsall Heath. This was led by John Newson from Balsall Heath is our Planet and looked at locations where improved cycle facilities are wanted. Views about this will be fed back to the Council.
Cyclists get going!

Opening of the Bee Garden

13/07/2017 at 12:39 pm | Posted in Gardens, Wildlife | Leave a comment

Myrtle Cottage stands in front of The Old Print Works on Moseley Road, opposite to Edward Road. It was built in the 1790s and it had a lovely garden, we can imagine. However, more recently, it was concreted over, like a lot of gardens. Jeremy Hunt, who lives in the cottage, teamed up with John Newson to lead volunteers on making planting boxes from scrap wood and planting them up as a Bee Garden. Bees need places to feed that are not doused in chemical pesticides. The environmental charity Balsall Heath Is Our Planet was happy to pay for materials. There are also edible plants and herbs.
On Saturday 8th July all was finished so an opening was held with a tea and cake celebration and poems about bees and other subjects. The garden is at 506 Moseley Road and visible through the gate at any time, with more if you enter the courtyard of the Old Print Works.

Bee Garden in July

Living on the Sun

11/07/2017 at 12:44 pm | Posted in Community energy, Solar power | Leave a comment
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At the roasting start of July, John Newson led a walk to visit some community buildings that benefit from solar panels. The walk took place during Community Energy Fortnight and the Moseley Festival. We were greeted at the Old Post Office building by Fiona Adams of Moseley Exchange, who explained how they benefit by the cheap electricity from the two solar arrays there, which belong to Community Energy Birmingham. The next stop was St Mary’s parish church, where John Dowell who is a former churchwarden, showed us the display inside the church of all the power produced over 6 years, since the panels were installed by British Gas. That was part of their Green Streets programme, which had been won by Sustainable Moseley and it also paid for panels at the Hamza Mosque, where we arrived to be shown around by Saifer Rehman. He had a most interesting story to tell about solar generation, with LED lights to cut consumption, and a range of water saving methods, as well as cycle stands put by the main entrance.
We agreed that there is one sun for everyone and all can benefit from using renewable energy !
To learn more about Community Energy Birmingham visit their website

Hamza Mosque

Solar Walk

27/06/2017 at 3:54 pm | Posted in Community energy, Solar power, Walking | Leave a comment

We will be holding a walk to look at some community buildings that are acting as power stations. Community Energy Birmingham is joining forces with Balsall Heath Is Our Planet to hold the event on Saturday 8th July. We start at 11am from in front of the Post Office in Moseley Village. Our tour will include that building and the parish church and Hamza mosque, which all generate electricity for local use.
Many people do not realise how much solar power is being used already, and what a great potential there is on all the roofs of the city to make clean electricity for the future.
As usual, please let us know if you are coming, or just turn up. No charge. The walk will last about 90 minutes and we shall see inside of some buildings as well meet people from the organisations who benefit from cheap electricity.
John Newson bhiop[@]jericho.org.uk see CEB website
Hamza Mosque solar

Tree Survey of Calthorpe Park

06/06/2017 at 1:51 pm | Posted in Air pollution, Trees | Leave a comment

Can you help us ?
We are looking for local people to
• Learn about different kinds of trees and how to recognise them,
• Help us to make a map of the trees in the park,
• Suggest trees that could be planted in the park in future.

Saturday 17th June 2017

Meet 2pm at Calthorpe Wellbeing Hub, Edward Road corner Cheddar Road limited car & cycle parking, bus 35 or 45
This activity organised by Balsall Heath Is Our Planet and Birmingham Trees for Life. Please let us know if you are coming. Reply to bhiop@jericho.org.uk John Newson 0121 647 1960
Not suitable for small children

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Opportunity to become a confident cyclist

12/05/2017 at 2:27 pm | Posted in Cycling | Leave a comment
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Cycle Active introductory rides are continuing for adults now on Fridays at 1.30 Calthorpe Well Being hub, Edward Road in Balsall Heath. You can practice off road, then venture out with them to Cannon Hill Park.
Places can be booked at the Ride Active website

John Newson, BHIOP development officer
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Oranges and Lemons

02/05/2017 at 2:19 pm | Posted in Food, Gardens, Trees | Leave a comment
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People were delighted to see citrus fruit growing on bushes for sale at the Community Garden Centre in Balsall Heath at a Grow It weekend, which took place over 29th and 30th April. The event was supported by Balsall Heath Is Our Planet and 175 people attended.

“We are trying to stock some more unusual fruit and vegetables, as well as flowers”. Said Sanjay who works there. “Gardeners may like to try them out, given that they have already been given a flying start”.

The community garden centre supports the work of Balsall Heath Forum. It is open every day, being located at 82 St Pauls Road, close to Ladypool Road, tel 0121 446 6183. They offer local delivery.

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Grow It Weekend

20/04/2017 at 3:35 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Spring is here and the plants are arriving, so we would love to see you at the Community Garden Centre in Balsall Heath on Saturday 29th April, and Sunday 30th April from 12am to 4pm.
You can see and ask about fruit, vegetables, herbs, and flowers, also methods of composting your garden waste. Bring us your questions!
Everyone welcome and free admission. Plant Sales at reasonable prices.
Balsall Heath Forum’s Garden Centre is on St Paul’s Road, near the junction with Ladypool Road, B12 8LS. Limited on-street parking only.
Supported by the ‘Making a Change’ programme of Balsall Heath is our Planet, a registered charity, with Lottery funding
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Pledge for Nature

10/04/2017 at 10:28 am | Posted in Wildlife | Leave a comment
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Many local people and organisations are pledging to protect nature. I pledge to;
* Do everything I can at home and at work to create space for nature,
* Support and protect my local green spaces
* Take action to encourage my local political and community leaders to protect the natural environment
* Encourage my employer to do more for the environment.
This has come from the Birmingham and Black Country Wildlife Trust, who want to build a coalition of people who will work together to preserve nature in the city. Well worth signing up, and there are more details of the pledge on their website

Cyclists of Balsall Heath

14/03/2017 at 1:45 pm | Posted in Cycling | Leave a comment
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Cyclists of Balsall Heath have an opportunity to learn about and influence Birmingham City Council’s plans for cyclists at a one-off meeting on Tuesday 21 March at 6pm start.
The venue is the Old Print Works, on Moseley Road; enter the courtyard, where new cycle stands are being installed. NB No car parking.
I will be leading the discussion on…
• What cycle routes and provision have been dropped from the City Council’s programme ?
• What do we think of the proposed route down Bristol Road?
• Where are more cycle stands required?
BHIOP will ensure that your ideas are fed forward to the council’s cycling team which is planning future expenditure.
Do circulate this message to any other cyclists in Balsall Heath
Please let me know if you can come along… John Newson BHIOP[at]jericho.org.uk
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