Author Archive

Local community action at its best in Handsworth

Posted on 21st May 2011 by

I attended a community event this morning which I was invited to held in Brunswick Gardens in Handsworth.

Local residents have been working for months with West Midlands Police, Midlands Heart, Groundwork and Birmingham City council to claim back the alleyways that run between Albert Rd and Herbert Rd.

Through neighbourhood management we were able to get some funding to clean up the area and put in new fences and get an alcohol restriction sign up.  

At the end of neighbourhood management local residents led by Sonia Hymen, Marlene Graham and Selwyn Clarke were keen to keep on with their plans to transform this area.

They have been working with Wilkes Green Infants School and Groundwork to create some mosaics which have just been fitted on site this week.

In the next few weeks the iron art panels will be fitted along the metal fence to really help change the feel of the alleyway when you walk through. The designs have been chosen by local people and represent the diversity and culture of Handsworth; Handsworth park, Handsworth carnival, Vaisakhi, cricket & music etc.  

These will be painted once they go up lovely bright colours.

Slowly but surely residents plans to improve this area are beginning to take real shape. Sometimes it is these small things that make a big difference to local people so it was great to see how wonderful the mosaics look. It was also great to see so many kids enjoying the games provided by Groundwork Street games team.

Next steps for the residents is to try and get agreements in place to keep the alleyways clean and  to take over management of the small piece of land adjacent to the alleyway. Good to see the residents supported by the new councillor for Lozells and East Handsworth Waseem Zaffer and Srg Dan Wickenden & PCSO Stacie Muir from West Midlands Police.

Latest edition of the Hands on Handsworth Magazine is out now

Posted on 17th May 2011 by

The latest edition of the hands on Handsworth magazine written by a team of local community journalist is out now

You can down load a copy here

Hands on Handsworth Community Magazine Issue 4

You can also get a copy from Handsworth Library or other outlets accross Handsworth

Election Results – for wards in Handsworth

Posted on 6th May 2011 by

The results of the local elections 2011 are available on the Birmingham City Council Elections website

Lozells & Handsworth – Labour candidate Waseem Zaffer won 71.0% of the vote (elected as new councillor)

Handsworth Wood – Labour candidate Paulette Hamilton won 50.8% of the vote

Soho Ward – Labour candidate Cybil Spence won 72.1% of the vote

Results for the referendum haven’t been declared yet –check here for updates

BRMB Walkathon 2011 through Handsworth this Sunday May 8th

Posted on 6th May 2011 by

This year’s Walkathon is all in aid of Birmingham Children’s Hospital – and to help rebuild the Emergency Department.

It is this Sunday May the 8th – visit the BRMB website for more details

Part of the route is through Handsworth click here to see the route and how to join

Whats on this Easter in Handsworth

Posted on 22nd April 2011 by

Looking for something to do this Easter weekend in Handsworth then here are a few suggestions:

Sunday 24th April –  Vaisakhi in Handsworth Park

Processions and cultural entertainment mark the beginning of the Sikh New Year in this colourful celebration. With stalls and displays, music, sport and food. Entrance is free starts at 12.00 finishes at 6pm for more details about the event click here

Visit Soho House & Museum which re-opened in April for the summer season – see opening time by clicking here. 

Monday 25th April – Full Stream Event, Easter Monday family steam fund Day at Soho House from 12 until 4pm, special free entry

Fancy a walk then there are a number of options

Or fancy a swim than joining Be Active and you can swim for free at Handsworth Leisure Centre

Local Elections & Referendum

Posted on 14th April 2011 by

The local elections are being held on the 5th May for information on the elections you can visit the Birmingham City Council Local Election pages.

Handsworth falls between three wards; Handsworth Wood, Lozells and East Handsworth and Soho. Each ward has three elected members. On the 5th of  depending on which ward you live in – you can vote for 1 candidate from the list for that ward.

The nominations for each of the three wards are;  

Persons nominated – Handsworth Wood
Other names in full
Home address in full Description (if any)
Kingsley Seymour
8 Island Road,
B21 8NP
Liberal Democrats
Rabinder Singh
12 The Slieve,
Handsworth Wood,
B20 2NR
The Conservative Party
348 Sarehole Road,
B28 0AQ
Green Party Candidate
* Hamilton
Paulette Adassa
821 Chester Road,
B24 0BX
The Labour Party Candidate
Persons nominated – Lozells and East Handsworth
Other names in full
Home address in full Description (if any)
129 Bacchus Road,
B18 4QR
The Conservative Party
46 Stamford Road,
B20 3PN
Liberal Democrat
215 Hubert Road,
Selly Oak,
B29 6ES
Green Party Candidate
123 Leonard Road,
B19 1JH
The Labour Party Candidate
Persons nominated – Soho
Other names in full
Home address in full Description (if any)
Steven John
30 Lansdowne House,
Great Colmore Street,
B15 2AR
Green Party
Robert John
172 Poplar Avenue,
B17 8EP
The Conservative Party
* Spence
Sybil Eurlena
69 Babington Road,
B21 0QD
The Labour Party Candidate
23 Willes Road,
Winson Green,
B18 4PZ
Liberal Democrat

Election results will appaer on the local elections home page as they come in click here

 On Thursday 5 May 2011, there will be a referendum on the voting system you use to elect MPs to the House of Commons.

To find out more to help you make a decision about how to vote you can  watch the May 5 Referendum short video

For information on women and electrol refrom visit the Fawcett Society

Why electrol reform matters to Britains Black community visit the OBV site

Electrol reform popular with young people visit British Youth Council

Electrol Reform Society

New local website in Handsworth for the Shri Guru Ravidass Bhawan temple on Union Row

Posted on 8th April 2011 by

The Shri Guru Ravidass Bhawan temple on Union Row, near Grove Lane Handsworth has a new website. The roots of the Bhawan on Union Row, Handsworth go back to before the 1960s in Birmingham, when a group of Ravidassia immigrants from Punjab, India decided to set up their own place of worship.

You can find out more about its history and what is happening there now by visiting the site. Good to see more local sites/blogs being developed across the neighbourhood. Real potential for social media to help connect people in Handsworth.

Exploring the many faith buildings along handsworth heritage trail

Posted on 5th April 2011 by

One of the key aspects of the new Handsworth Heritage trail is its connection with some of the faith buildings around Handsworth. Many of these buildings are spectacular and add immense vaule to the way the neighbourhood looks today. Some of them have pretty impressive history such as St Mary’s Church which has stones that can be dated back to 1160.

If you start the trail at Soho House it takes you through the garden at St Micheal’s Church built in 1850.

Across the road the trail takes you past the Guru Nanak Niiskam Sewak Jatha, which sits impressively at the bottom of the Soho Rd in Handsworth.

The trail then takes you up Thornhill Rd into Handsworth Park where St Mary’s Church is situated on its boundary by Hamstead Rd. I was very lucky in 2009 I got the chance to get up on the roof of the tower and look at accross Birmingham, what a few. Not for the faint hearted thou as it is quite a treck up the tower which isn’t really very easy to access so isn’t open to the public. For pictures showing outisde of St Mary’s visit the photostream for the trail on flickr

The next part of the trail takes you up to Oxhill Rd and past St Andrews Church dates back to early part of the 19th century

You can download a copy of the heritage trail from this site click on the heritage trail page

#Handsworth Carnival Could be set to return

Posted on 31st March 2011 by

Story today in the Birmingham Mail speculating about the possible return of the carnival to Handsworth?

The carnival was held in Handsworth Park from 1984 until 1994 when it moved to Perry Park.

Some great images of the carnival available online; Digital Handsworth photos by Brigitte Winsor like the one below. Larrie Teirnan on flickr has some wonderful vibrant images of the carnival.

Interesting clip on You Tube from West Midlands Police video from 2009 featuring Professor Black who helps local people make the wondeful costumes. Also views from police from their perspective of policing the event.

What do people think should the carnival come back to Handsworth?

#We are what we Tweet and Hands on #Handsworth Blog

Posted on 31st March 2011 by

We Are What We Tweet event is being organised by BCU MA Social Media Students. It looks like an interesting event and is mainly about; a practical exploration of how social media is being used to drive change, tell stories and provide a commentary on our lives, the event will consider a number of recent high profile world events. Key speakers from a range of backgrounds will explain how social media influenced those events and discussion will consider what lessons we can apply to our own lives.

One of the organisers is Noha Atef local Handsworth resident. I have been aksed to go along and talk about my experience of setting up the Hands on Handsworth blog and how this has been successful over the last 12 months. Its a free event so if you would like to come along you can register here

The event is on Friday 8th April from 9.30 @ 

BIAD (Birmingham Institute for Art & Design)
Margaret Street
B3 3BX