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BirminghamWeAre – A FreeTimePays community

A City for All

BirminghamWeAre is a community devoted to social value, providing a shared space for people who make a difference and together have a positive social impact across the City.

Launch date: August 2018
Combined FreeTimePays following: 101K


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Green open spaces
Displaying until 01 Sep 2021 - FreeTimePays
Featuring

Love our parks - get involved!

As Lockdown rules start to enable more people to enjoy their parks and green spaces, we all want to ensure that these wonderful places of natural beauty are protected for all to enjoy.  This community collective will share some of the brilliant initiatives running across the UK and show just how, together, we can make a difference for the benefit of all.  Connect with us.

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Love our parks - get involved!





As Lockdown rules start to enable more people to enjoy their parks and green spaces, we all want to ensure that these wonderful places of natural beauty are protected for all to enjoy.  This community collective will share some of the brilliant initiatives running across the UK and show just how, together, we can make a difference for the benefit of all.  Connect with us.


Over the next month and for the remainder of 2020, we will be growing our reach and pull together information and details on all the great work being carried out across communities as they collectively protect their parks.  

This will grow into a massive 'community-led' resource for people with a shared interest and passion for their local parks and green spaces.  

Here's just a few of the ideas and initiatives we will be telling you more about so we can share and get more people actively involved.

Litter picking groups - they do a fantastic job.  We'll connect you with your local group.

Art & Culture Trail.  We'll help you set up your trail and showcase your parks.

Walking clubs. We'll connect you and bring in more friends.

Park angels.  Volunteering with a difference.  We'll tell you more.

Creativity and green spaces collide.  Let's look at how art, music, photography and creativity in all its forms can help promote and protect our parks. 

Parks and mental health.  A walk, ride or jog in the park can do so much for your mental health.

There's something for everyone.

Connect with us and help us protect our parks. 

 

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60 passion points
Art, culture & creativity
10 Jul 2020 - Stephen Calcutt
News & Updates

BuStopia

https://www.youtube.com/embed//4thOYIdnxwM

This is a prototype event that encapsulates my work and where I'm coming from as an artist 

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BuStopia





This is a prototype event that encapsulates my work and where I'm coming from as an artist 


This is the run down of the BuStopia event as depicted on my wesite, I was to present this again as  a performance piece at the Midland Fashion Awards 2020 which has been cancelled due to Covid 19. 

BuStopia 

The first  live show was performed Saturday March the 7th 2020 at the Direct Art Action Gallery in Sutton Coldfield.  Birmingham UK.  that was conceived as part of the overall multi media art exhibition is also called BuStopia as a stand alone piece.

The show lasts approximately 5 minutes and is made up of three stages representing a transition from an anxious, depressed state to a feeling of taking ownership  of ones life and  empowerment.

The first stage of the show the models portraying an anxiety or depressed  state.  The models  are some way from the viewers the projection and the windows reinforcing the detachment that the models are portraying as the pace across the floor. 

Phase 1:       Anxiety depression 

The models stop and stand still for this part of the performance. This is the transformation phase where the make up artist  applies some colour to the faces of the models in a minimalist fashion. Preparing the models for the final movement.  

Phase 2:         Transformation

The transformation music stops the models start to weave through the windows getting closer to the viewers slowly the barriers are diminishing. 

The models  discarded the  white outer garments, removed to reveal the garments I created  this is symbolic like the butterfly that transforms from the caterpillar .

This phase of the show the models are now stood in  front of the windows. They are now in full view of the audience the projected film is now hitting them directly. When the models remove their outer white garments they reveal the brightly coloured formal garments that Idesigned. 

Phase 3:           Empowerment

They have broken through the anxiety and depression there are no barriers between them and the viewer.  They have taken ownership, they are in control of their lives.  The clothing symbolises  this state by containing the chaotic image within classic formal clean cut garments. The models then engage in a traditional catwalk as the final movement of this show 

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40 passion points
Green open spaces
10 Jul 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Newey Goodman Park off the Stratford Road in Hall Green

Previously this was just a recreation ground off the Stratford Road in Hall Green. But Birmingham City Council developed it into Newey Goodman Park by about 2012 after a new housing development was built around Newey Road and Goodman Close. Named after Newey Goodman Ltd which used to be on Robin Hood Lane. They made hairgrips and pins. The site was sold for housing in the 1980s.

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Newey Goodman Park off the Stratford Road in Hall Green





Previously this was just a recreation ground off the Stratford Road in Hall Green. But Birmingham City Council developed it into Newey Goodman Park by about 2012 after a new housing development was built around Newey Road and Goodman Close. Named after Newey Goodman Ltd which used to be on Robin Hood Lane. They made hairgrips and pins. The site was sold for housing in the 1980s.


Newey Goodman Park

A relatively new park in Birmingham, Newey Goodman Park only opened sometime after 2012 on what before was just the Newey Goodman Open Space. Located near the Stratford Road in Hall Green, the park has a play area and a basketball court. The park is quite small. Nearby is the housing estate around the following roads: Newey Road (which leads to the Robin Hood Lane), Goodman Close, Longfield Close, Oldhouse Farm Close, Bissell Close and Glover Close.

The park and the nearby roads were named after Newey Goodman Ltd which used to be on the site of the park and where the houses are now on Robin Hood Lane. The company was sold in the late 1970s and early 1980s. After that the site was sold for housing to be built.

 

2010

On a walk around Hall Green in the snow during December 2010 (on Christmas Day - a rare White Christmas), I saw this recreation ground or open space from the Stratford Road. I did not go in, nor did I know that it was named after Newey Goodman Ltd.

There was nothing there at the time, so the snow just covered the entire field.

So much fluffy white snow on the Newey Goodman Open Space. Not that I knew what it was called at the time.

Some trees close to the Stratford Road. Even then you could see the houses around Newey Road and the cul-de-sac's around it.

I would have continued on from here down Robin Hood Lane and up Highfield Road. Didn't think about this space again for years, although did used to pass it on the bus.

2020

The rest of the photos were taken on lockdown walks. I first went in at the end of March 2020. I did consider going in before lockdown, but too many people going in there. This time though was hardly anyone in there.

Welcome to Newey Goodman Park the sign seen from the Stratford Road.

Bright sunshine and clouds over the play area.

Due to the pandemic / lockdown, at the time the playground / play area was closed from the public.

This play area had a green tree sign, instead of those elephant signs I've found in other Birmingham parks.

Some of the play equipment out of use, seen over the fence. A seesaw, and some kind of tyre swing.

It was all quite modern with the children's play equipment that they have here. Looking towards the Stratford Road.

There was also a basketball court, but it didn't look sealed off. In April 2020, I later saw people in there exercising or something.

Still daffodils to see at the end of March. The view towards the houses around Newey Goodman Park.

The furthest path goes towards Goodman Close.

Looking back into this small park.

Trees at the far end of the park.

I just walked down Newey Road and re-entered the park at Longfield Close. Daffodils near the closed play area.

Bollards at the end of Newey Road. It looks like the road used to continue onto the Stratford Road, so that means cars can't go into the park from here.

Popped in again in June 2020 to see what had changed. Dark clouds over the park, and the grass looked cut from the Stratford Road entrance.

Was some long grass behind the cut grass, for social distancing.

Walking up the grass cut in the park, while you can see the long grass to the left.

There was daisies growing in the long grass.

Close up look at the daisies.

Continuing up the cut grass path.

Another look at the basketball court. Seems like the grass had been cut for routes towards it.

Getting near the top end of the park again.

Longer grass in the middle with all the cut grass either side of it.

One last look at the park before I left via Goodman Close and Newey Road. This time I exited onto Robin Hood Lane.

A few more photos from early July 2020 taken from a walk up the Stratford Road. Saturday evening was the last time that I saw the National Express West Midlands Platinum bus on the 6 before they were replaced on that route the following day by brand new National Express West Midlands Electric buses. It was passing Newey Goodman Park.

I also noticed that the play area is now open again. Mothers with their kids on the swings, having fun. Playgrounds and play areas have been allowed to reopen again.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Thanks for all the followers.

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60 passion points
People & community
10 Jul 2020 - Elliott Brown
Inspiration

Welcome to Ladywood around Ladywood Middleway

While Ladywood now includes the City Centre. In this introductory post, we will take a look at Ladywood around Ladywood Middleway. The suburban part not far from Edgbaston and Five Ways. Spring Hill Library is near the end of Ladywood Middleway, while Broadway Plaza is close to Five Ways (the former site of the Children's Hospital). Ladywood Leisure Centre opened in 2019.

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Welcome to Ladywood around Ladywood Middleway





While Ladywood now includes the City Centre. In this introductory post, we will take a look at Ladywood around Ladywood Middleway. The suburban part not far from Edgbaston and Five Ways. Spring Hill Library is near the end of Ladywood Middleway, while Broadway Plaza is close to Five Ways (the former site of the Children's Hospital). Ladywood Leisure Centre opened in 2019.


LADYWOOD

I know more about Edgbaston than Ladywood, but I used to regularly travel to Five Ways. Either to go to the cinema at Broadway Plaza, or to get onto Broad Street to walk into town.

In terms of the history of Ladywood, lets go to Bill Dargue's A History of Birmingham's placenames A to Z for information. He has allowed reuse by Creative Commons CC BY-NC-SA 3.0. (You are free to share and adapt the licensor's work).

The first record of Lady Wood was in 1565. It was named after the Lady Wood which was between Monument Road and the Ladywood Brook. It stretched from Portland Road to Spring Hill. The wood may have been church property. The wood was long gone by the mid 16th century.

The Birmingham Canal Navigations Main Line

The Birmingham Canal Navigations Main Line was built through Ladywood from 1769 until 1772 by the canal engineer James Brindley. It was straightened by Thomas Telford in the 19th century, which led to Brindley's sections being cut off as loops. Today we have the Icknield Port Loop and the Soho Loop within Ladywood (and the Oozells Loop in the City Centre).

The Birmingham to Wolverhampton Railway

The Birmingham to Wolverhampton Railway opened in 1852 and it passes through Ladywood. It is known as the Stour Valley Line. There used to be a station in Ladywood called Monument Lane. It opened in 1854, was renamed to Edgbaston shortly afterwards. Renamed back to Monument Lane in 1874. It was relocated in 1886 and it was closed down in 1958.

St John's Church Ladywood

The Church of St John is located on Monument Road near Ladywood Middleway. Seen here in May 2011. A Grade II listed building. Originally built in 1854 in the Gothic style (or Decorated style) by S. S. Teulon, the Church of St John the Evangelist was built on the site of Ladywood House, on land leased from King Edward VI School. Famed Birmingham architect J. A. Chatwin built additions in 1881. It was also called the Anglican Church of St John and St Peter. It was built of coursed red sandstone with ashlar dressings. The Church of St John the Evangelist became the Church of St John and St Peter in 2000.

Lench's Trust Almshouses

These Almshouses are on Ladywood Middleway near Five Ways. Seen below in December 2009. Built in 1858 by J H Hornblower and Haylock in the Tudor style or Jacobean style. A Grade II listed building. It was built of red brick with stone dressings and tiled roofs. No 1 Hagley Road (Metropolitan House by John Madin) is seen behind to the left.  Broadway Plaza is to the right of here (site of the Children's Hospital until 1998).

View from the Hagley Road below of the Lansdowne House site during April 2016. Seven Capital would build it. No. 1 Hagley Road was also getting refurbished at the time. You could see Lench's Trust Almshouses from Hagley Road before The Lansdowne got built.

Ladywood Middleway view of Lench's Trust Almshouses, with The Lansdowne well under way behind. Seen during March 2018. A mixture of old and new architecture.

Another view of Lench's Trust Almshouses from more recently during November 2019. The Lansdowne seen from Ladywood Middleway was now complete.

Spring Hill Library

Seen in May 2011 from Ladywood Middleway, Spring Hill Library is next to a large Tesco supermarket at Spring Hill on Summer Hill Road. Spring Hill Library is a Grade II* listed building built in 1893 by Martin and Chamberlain. It was built in the Gothic style with bright red bricks and terracotta dressings. It is in the Soho ward.

Welcome to Ladywood

Seen on Ladywood Middleway during October 2012 is this sculpture of Charles Blondin, a French tightrope walker. In September 1873 he came to Birmingham, and he crossed Edgbaston Reservoir on a tightrope! The statue was made in 1992 and placed on Ladywood Middleway. It was sculpted by the artist Paul Richardson in 1993.

Biddle and Webb Auctions - Icknield Square

Saw this building from Ladywood Middleway in February 2020. Biddle & Webb is located off Ladywood Middleway on Icknield Square. The building probably dates to the 19th century, but is not listed. But was built close to the Birmingham Canal Navigations, so was probably a canalside warehouse at one point.

Broadway Plaza

The Birmingham Children's Hospital was on the Ladywood Middleway site from when it was built from 1910 to 1919, until they moved to Steelhouse Lane (the former Birmingham General Hospital) in 1998. Most of the hospital was demolished apart from the facade, and Broadway Plaza opened in 2003. It originally had a 12 screen cinema run by AMC, but Odeon took it over in 2012. It was transformed into the Odeon Luxe Cinema in 2018. There is also a bowling alley here. Originally BowlPlex, it is now the Hollywood Bowl. You would also find a Domino's Pizza, Costa Coffee, and a Subway there. As well as a Travelodge hotel.

The architect of the Children's Hospital was F W Martin. At one point it was called the King Edward VII Memorial Children's Hospital. View below from June 2009. Only the facade was retained, the rest of the hospital was demolished. The facade was now the entrance to Broadway Casino, with Virgin Active to the left.

This memorial stone was laid in April 1913 by H.R.H. The Princess Louise, Duchess of Argyll.

View below during December 2009 with Christmas stars up as Christmas decorations at Broadway Plaza.

An early evening shot below from December 2013 with Christmas lights on the facade of the former Children's Hospital at Broadway Plaza.

The AMC 12 Cinemas opened at Broadway Plaza in 2003. It became one of my regular cinemas to visit. This view below from June 2009. Travelodge hotel on the right and apartments.

In 2012 Odeon took over the AMC at Broadway Plaza, and there was some minor changes inside, such as moving the box office, and installing more automatic ticket machines. A Costa Coffee also opened, which is to the right of here. View below from October 2012. Used to regularly go with early bird tickets.

Further changes at Broadway Plaza in 2018, when Odeon was transformed into an Odeon Luxe. Each screen was refurbished, and the seats changes to recliner seats. Also meant the tickets cost a bit more. I stopped going here, and was going to Cineworld instead. This view from June 2018. Although I have seen a few films here in the last year or so (before the lockdown).

Kareo 6 Medical & Health Centre

I don't know much about this buildings history, but saw it from Ladywood Middleway back in March 2017. In the middle of the building is a Birmingham Forward coat of arms dated to 1934. Inscribed on it was Maternity & Child Welfare Centre. So that must of what it was originally built as back in the day.

Ladywood Community Fire Station

Ladywood Fire Station is located on Icknield Port Road in Ladywood. It is not far from Monument Road. Seen in February 2020. West Midlands Fire Service serves all of Ladywood plus the City Centre West from this fire station. The Union Jack was flying proudly in the middle of the building.

Ladywood Leisure Centre

Seen during February 2020, the new Ladywood Leisure Centre was opened in August 2019 on a site on Ladywood Middleway at the end of Monument Road. It replaced the old Ladywood Arts & Leisure Centre. The site was cleared by 2015 and it was built in 2019. It is similar in design to new leisure centres built in Northfield (2018) and in Stechford (2018).

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Thanks for all the followers.

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70 passion points
Green open spaces
10 Jul 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

The Dingles in the Shire Country Park

Another section of the Shire Country Park on the Millstream Way is The Dingles in Yardley Wood. Entrances near Robin Hood Lane (from Coleside Avenue) or Trittiford Road or Highfield Road. The River Cole runs through and the Chinn Brook joins it. Suitable for walks, walking your dog, running and cycling. Runs alongside Cole Valley Road.

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The Dingles in the Shire Country Park





Another section of the Shire Country Park on the Millstream Way is The Dingles in Yardley Wood. Entrances near Robin Hood Lane (from Coleside Avenue) or Trittiford Road or Highfield Road. The River Cole runs through and the Chinn Brook joins it. Suitable for walks, walking your dog, running and cycling. Runs alongside Cole Valley Road.


The Dingles in the Shire Country Park

The Dingles is part of the Shire Country Park runs alongside the River Cole from Robin Hood Lane (not far from Brook Lane) towards Trittiford Road and Highfield Road in Yardley Wood. There is at least three main ways to walk through it. The main path is now like a raised cycle path. There was also a rough path in the middle between the River Cole and the Chinn Brook. The final route was just an open field of grass that you can walk on. The parkland runs alongside Cole Valley Road. If entering from Robin Hood Lane, you have to walk down Coleside Avenue to enter. There is also a couple of bridges that cross over the River Cole or the Chinn Brook.

The Dingles is the halfway point between the John Morris Jones Walkway and the Trittiford Mill Pool.

 

Over on Bill Dargue's History of Birmingham place names from A to Z on Yardley Wood he has a lot of useful information about The Dingles which I will summarise here.

The Dingles is also called The Dingles Recreation Ground. There was formerly fords at both ends of the river here, but they were replaced with road bridges. The original bridge at Highfield Road was called the Titterford Bridge. The Four Arches Bridge in The Dingles is close to Coleside Avenue. It dates to at least 1822. The bridge was maintained by the Yardley Great Trust. The bridge was almost in ruins in 1956, but was restored in 1980, and is now pedestrianised.

2012

First visit was during March 2012. Starting at Robin Hood Lane in Yardley Wood. A look at the River Cole.

View of the River Cole from the Four Arches Bridge.

The open field in The Dingles you can walk through. No paths on here though.

One of the bridges you can cross over in The Dingles.

View of the footbridge further back.

Trees bare of leaves near the River Cole.

Another close up view of the River Cole.

Contiuing on the walk up the grassy field.

The gate that exits to Trittiford Road. There is also entrances on Highfield Road.

More views of the River Cole.

And another view of the River Cole. By the looks of it from the rough path between the River Cole and Chinn Brook.

The gate at the exit to Highfield Road in Yardley Wood. The River Cole continues beyond here passing the Trittiford Mill Pool.

2016

Back in The Dingles for another walk during May 2016. It was the May Day Bank Holiday walk that started from the Sarehole Mill car park. First up a look at the bridge on Robin Hood Lane, which replaced the ford that used to be here historically.

Fingerpost in The Dingles pointing the way to the John Morris Jones Walkway (left) and the Trittiford Mill Pool (right). Near the historic Four Arches Bridge.

A look at the Four Arches Bridge that crosses the River Cole in The Dingles.

A tree had been cut down near the River Cole at this point.

Another fingerpost in The Dingles. This one alongside the raised cycle path. The Chinn Brook Recreation Ground to the left (also called Chinn Brook Meadows). Sarehole Mill and Cole Bank Road to the right.

Must have taken the walk between the River Cole and the Chinn Brook at the time.

It looks like a bike crossing into the river at this point.

Sign for the 7 Wonders Walk.

After leaving The Dingles this time, saw a fire engine from Billesley Community Fire Station, before going into the John Morris Jones Walkway again.

2017

Snow from December 2017. I didn't enter The Dingles at that time. Only popped into the Trittiford Mill Pool while it was snowing.

White stuff (snow) everywhere.

Even the River Cole from Highfield Road was surrounded by snow at the time.

Not sure what it would have been like to walk through The Dingles covered in snow. But was best to stick to Highfield Road and walk back up to Hall Green.

2020

The first lockdown walk through The Dingles was in March 2020. I took the grass route from the Highfield Road entrance. The man running ahead of me in the Trittiford Mill Pool ran far ahead of me in The Dingles.

See the running man go way ahead of me, while I caught him with the River Cole.

The grass was bit wet to walk on and would be no paths until I got to the bridge to cross over the River Cole.

Saw a magpie on a branch.

Trees were bare as I saw this River Cole view.

Had a blue sky that day in March.

The River Cole from the footbridge.

Looking back at the footbridge I'd crossed over. Same one I used 8 years earlier.

Now on the path towards Coleside Avenue, running alongside the River Cole.

The exit to Coleside Avenue, which was also near the main path in The Dingles.

In May 2020 had another walk through The Dingles. First up saw some ducks near the River Cole from the bridge on Robin Hood Lane. Had just come from the John Morris Jones Walkway.

Another look at the Four Arches Bridge.

Another view of the River Cole from the Four Arches Bridge.

Grass near the main cycle path has been cut for social distancing walking.

Was a lot of long grass apart from the grass mown for the 2 metre social distancing rule.

Gate to Trittiford Road. Briefly exited here before going into another gate on Highfield Road.

On the rough path between the Chinn Brook and River Cole, I found this stump of a tree with all these plastic toys! Some kind of memorial to a child or something?

View of the toys from the top. I hope it was not classed as littering or flytipping.

Still on the rough path between the Chinn Brook and River Cole, in the middle of The Dingles.

View of the River Cole from an alternative route back towards Coleside Avenue and Robin Hood Lane.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Thanks for all the followers.

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70 passion points

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