Better Parks Please

02/07/2019 at 11:55 am | Posted in Green Spaces, Walking, Wildlife | Leave a comment
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What are the main problems in the parks and green spaces of Balsall Heath?  What changes would make them more attractive and useful for everyone ?

These are questions that BHIOP is looking at in 2019 and 2020. We have received a small grant from the National Lottery Community Fund to involve local people in finding some answers. I have been appointed as Project Officer John Newson bhiop[at]jericho.org.uk

I hope to meet you at the Commonwealth Carnival in Pickwick Park, St Paul’s Road, on Saturday 6th July from 1 pm to 4.30 pm. We shall collect people’s ideas, using a simple survey about “Better Parks Please”..

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Path beside the River Rea

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Balsall Heath Neighbourhood Plan

01/06/2019 at 9:00 am | Posted in Green Spaces, Streets, Train station, Walking | Leave a comment
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We have put up a display in the library for people to learn more about the Neighbourhood Plan. It runs through June.

You can see designs to improve the streets for pedestrians, re-open the station and make better use of the green spaces. It was all based on extensive public consultation, but comments sheets are there for you to add your own ideas for the future of the area.

The library is next to the Baths. Exhibition is free during library opening hours

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Sit down protest pays off

05/04/2019 at 4:53 pm | Posted in Streets, Walking | Leave a comment
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People need to be able to sit down in the centre of the Balsall Heath, especially the elderly, disabled, parents with small children, those waiting for a bus etc. Complaints have been going to Birmingham City Council for months about the broken benches in front of the baths and library.  They  looked awful and let the street down  Thanks to the library staff and to Councillor Shabrana Hussein and others for keeping on with the requests to get this problem fixed. If you know of something that needs doing to improve the street scene for pedestrians then you can use the reporting website FixMyStreet

Library bench

We have a Plan

02/07/2018 at 1:43 pm | Posted in Green Spaces, Streets, Walking | Leave a comment
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Visitors to Balsall Heath Carnival on Saturday 7th July will be able to learn about some cunning plans to get our streets moving and to re-open the local rail station. A stall and display by BHIOP and the Forum will be there to explain how the Neighbourhood Plan can take these matters forward, and to take your comments, so we can feed them to the planners. Remember, if we don’t ask, we won’t get….

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Fun and Games The day will also be a lot of fun for all ages, from 12.00 to 4pm, with schoolchildren in costumes and flags , to represent the many countries of the Commonwealth .  There will be our own Games to watch , well ahead of the 2022 Commonwealth Games. This Carnival  will not be as noisy as some previous ones, I am advised and there will be tea and cake also a lineup of stalls and activities.

Venue; St Paul’s Road will be blocked off for the event ,which is in Pickwick Park opposite Clifton School B12 8LS

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People in the Road

25/04/2018 at 4:15 pm | Posted in Streets, Walking | Leave a comment

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People take over Moseley Road

23/04/2018 at 9:57 am | Posted in Streets, Walking | Leave a comment

All motor traffic  was shut out of the Moseley Road through Balsall Heath on Sunday 23 April. The sun shone and stalls lined the road. The “We Are Balsall Heath” event had people of all ages and backgrounds meeting and enjoying games, dance, art, food and learning about local projects and the future of the many interesting old buildings that make up the centre of Balsall Heath.

Balsall Heath Is our Planet and Balsall Heath Forum ran a stall and display, asking for views about some of the proposed changes in the Neighbourhood Plan, including a town square, railway station and making the river more natural and accessible. People also gave views about about housing and transport. The daring experiment on the day got everyone thinking about how our lives are dominated by road traffic and what can be done about this. More about Neighbourhood Plan

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Street Market to Close the Moseley Road

20/03/2018 at 3:11 pm | Posted in Cycling, Streets, Walking | Leave a comment

On Sunday 22 April 2018 permission has been given to MELA enterprises to close the Moseley Road through Balsall Heath for a We Are Balsall Heath  intercultural street market . Thousands of people are expected to attend 11am to 4pm and they will see what we can do when the neighbourhood is not being cut in half by a river of traffic. and parked vehicles. It will mean some diversion of buses and drivers, but traffic is light anyway on a Sunday.

Local people and organisations are being invited to book stalls and come to display their goods or services . Inquiries can be made online here 

Balsall Heath is our Planet and Balsall Heath Forum will be asking people at the market what they think about the way the street operates, what they want from their streets and how to implement the Neighbourhood Plan for the area. Give us your ideas!!

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Note that local people are also supporting a Balsall Heath Carnival in July, so if you want to look ahead and support it see the details here

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Street Audit

05/02/2018 at 1:40 pm | Posted in Cycling, Recycling, Streets, Walking | 1 Comment

We are going to have a street audit of Edward Road in Balsall Heath on Wednesday 7th February at 2pm. The idea is to walk the length of the road, noting any problems for pedestrians; such as blocked footway, poor parking,  dangerous crossing,  litter and dumped items. We want to identify who may be able to take action, especially to prevent the problems from repeating.  Could rubbish be sent to recycling?

A better environment would encourage people  to walk and cycle short distances rather than drive everywhere. We will report back on our findings, via this blog. Anyone interested is most welcome to join us. A follow up Spring Clean event should happen next month. Meet up 2pm on Wednesday outside MECC, corner of Edward Road and Court Road – take about an hour.

Walking route into city centre

11/09/2017 at 12:31 pm | Posted in Walking | Leave a comment

Walkers set out from Balsall Heath Library on 9th September with the idea of discovering a safe and quiet walking route into Birmingham city centre. We strode through green spaces down to the River Rea, where we saw some public art and lovely flowers among the grass. Then crossed the Middleway, turning left through more green spaces in Highgate to reach the zebra crossing of Sherlock Street, so into Hope Street, after which we used a new pedestrian crossing of Bristol Road. Following Rickman Drive we entered Moonlit Park, then Sunset Park, exited onto Langley Walk, which took us to the bombed out St Thomas’s church with its Peace Garden. From there on up Washington Street, then beside The Cube to join the canal towpath all the way to the back of the Convention Centre (toilets!). We finished behind the Library of Birmingham in the City Centre Gardens. Here we met the other walkers and cyclists who had come in by other green routes and we all received the praise of the Lord Mayor.

We agreed that our route was surprisingly peaceful and traffic free, and these green spaces should be signed and made better known. Birmingham isn’t just roads and traffic ! 

John Newson, development officer, Balsall Heath Is Our Planet

 

Walk to the City Centre

30/08/2017 at 12:19 pm | Posted in Walking | Leave a comment
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Walk to the City Centre on Sunday 10th September

Let’s discover a safe walking route into Birmingham city centre that goes through green spaces. We want to show that they should be protected and linked up for walking and cycling routes. Please join this community walk and picnic, organised by the Greener Birmingham Coalition. One of the walks will be led by Balsall Heath Forum on Sunday 10th September meeting at 12.00 from Balsall Heath Library, next to Moseley Road Baths. Finish at the picnic at City Centre Gardens, behind the Library of Birmingham. It’s free, no booking, just turn up. Please have your walking shoes, rainwear and a picnic. About 2 miles or 1 hour, take a bus back or walk. More information at Greener West Midlands

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