Birmingham news and blogs Friday 18 March 2016
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Solihull Faiths Forum ECO group to hold its 7th ‘Go Green’ Fair 

14 Mar 16

Beryl Moppett (Solihull Town Centre Chaplaincy) draws this event to our attention: (Below: flyer with details) She adds: “This is the seventh year of the ‘Go Green’ Fair, which will be held as usual in Mell Square 10.00am – 4.00pm.


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Banking: Birmingham’s first MP, John Clancy & a Conservative MP 

14 Mar 16

Thomas Attwood, Birmingham’s first MP, was a local or country banker.


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NHS Birmingham evening session at Bournville College, March 16th 

11 Mar 16

NHS Birmingham South Central Clinical Commissioning Group ‘Different Anglez of Society’ radio presenter Charmaine Burton will host a Question and Answer session and the discussion will be recorded for broadcast on New Style Radio 98.7FM.


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The Times lauds Birmingham 

9 Mar 16

Ruth Bloomfield in the Times gives the following grounds for optimism: A report by Knight Frank states that it has more start-ups than any other regional city in Britain, and attracts more foreign direct investment projects than any other English …


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Science Capital: innovation-related events in the West Midlands 

6 Mar 16

Birmingham based Science Capital aims to create a sustainable and internationally recognized hub of entrepreneurial science that contributes to the development of an innovation-driven economy.


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Reflections on Digbeth workshops: ‘Anti Austerity – Pro what? 

4 Mar 16

Are there better ways of organising society and economies? “Austerity is part of a wider approach called neo-liberalism which is based on five very short and easy to understand principles: free markets; small state; low tax; individual liberty; …


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Birmingham’s Future Waste Strategy – “Be Heard” 

2 Mar 16

The major 25-year contract for the Tyseley incinerator is due to end in 2019 and the council is taking this opportunity to review the entire refuse and re-cycling service, save money and make major changes.


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Solar Pioneers of Bournville: Dr John Newson 

26 Feb 16

The Bournville area of Birmingham has had a pioneering role in the use of solar energy in Britain and a paper which briefly describes this has been commissioned by Greening the North in memory of the late Tom Greeves, who was inspired by reading The …


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Could urban rental housing co-ops be an option for Birmingham? 

25 Feb 16

News of West Rhyl Housing Co-operative , Wales’s first urban rental housing co-op, formed by North Wales Housing and West Rhyl Community Land Trust, prompts this question.


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A ringside seat for the Birmingham Press versus the Times 

24 Feb 16

A verbal sparring match between the Birmingham Press’ independent Steve Beauchampé and Rachel Sylvester in the Murdoch Times would be well worth turning out for.


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Keep ahold of EU nurse for fear of finding something worse – untrammelled plutocracy 

22 Feb 16

In Birmingham on Saturday it was remarkable to see a large room full of solid citizens opting to remain with the EU – not one dissenting voice.


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Protesting junior doctors put private providers under scrutiny 

19 Feb 16

A link in the Brummie aggregator, i n a notice from Birmingham Against the Cuts, gives notice that there will be a rally to support the junior doctors on Saturday 20th, at 2pm, outside Waterstones by the Bull Ring, because the government’s decision…


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Housing 5: input from an independent group of 12 housing experts chaired by Sir Michael Lyons 

17 Feb 16

Sir Michael, who served as Chief Executive of Birmingham City Council (1994–2001), headed the 2007 Lyons review of local government which pointed out that good housing is “critical to the health of the national economy and the quality of life …


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It’s time to challenge the West Midlands Combined Authority 

16 Feb 16

A superb analysis of ‘ Osborne’s model of devolution’ caused this regular ‘Brummie scanner’ to look again at its publisher, ‘Communities Against the Cuts’.


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Birmingham – a turning point? 

14 Feb 16

Care for EVERY child in the city – wherever they live Cllr John Clancy, leader of the city council, records good progress already being made with social care and education improvements.


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Yes, the EU is indeed our bulwark against government tyranny, Mr Cameron 

13 Feb 16

“The EU is our bulwark against tyranny”: Cameron Today’s headline in the Times will cause many to reflect on these words.


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Aston Business School: Green Politics & the Left 

10 Feb 16

The election of Jeremy Corbyn to the leadership of the Labour Party – a Labour leader ‘without historical precedent’ – offers a challenge to all those political groups, organizations and parties that oppose continuing inequality, climate …


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‘Visit My Mosque’ initiative 

9 Feb 16

News of this initiative comes from a Surrey reader and the International Business Times, which often records news avoided by the mainstream press.


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The new Conservative campaign swings into action 

8 Feb 16

A few days after Cllr John Clancy, Leader of Birmingham City Council, announced a targeted programme of action to clean up litter-strewn neighbourhoods , leaflets are being distributed by Conservative councillors urging constituents to get involved …


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The road to 2020: Conservative Caucus city seats initiative 

6 Feb 16

Conservative Home lists Birmingham targets : Birmingham Hall Green Birmingham Hodge Hill Birmingham Ladywood Birmingham Perry Barr Birmingham Yardley Conservative party membership has fallen from nearly 300,000 to about 150,000 over the last ten …


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W. Midlands whistleblower Dr Mattu: justice cruelly deferred, but finally not not denied 

5 Feb 16

In 2012 a sister site published the case of Dr Mattu and also Julian Assange, both currently in the news, under the title, ‘Whistleblowers: so many have suffered – is the Public Disclosure Act being deliberately ignored?’ The editor briefly …


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City centre’s ChangeKitchen now also in Stirchley 

3 Feb 16

Local people from this lively neighbourhood are taking a great interest in the Edwardian Stirchley Baths , lovingly restored and re-opened – hundreds coming to an open evening in December.


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Birmingham’s housing partnership – a new approach 

31 Jan 16

The council’s Press and PR Officer Debbie Harrison has issued an account of a meeting convened to discuss how to ensure enough quality homes and support services for Birmingham’s citizens.


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An appeal from the Director of Interfaith Relations for the Bishop of Birmingham 

29 Jan 16

Background In December, former English Defence League leader Tommy Robinson (left) formed a UK branch of Pegida , a German organisation founded in   Dresden.


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Fastaid volunteers provide fast, life saving treatment in Solihull and Birmingham 

28 Jan 16

A reader sent news of this organisation in order to raise awareness of its work Established in 2005 Fastaid provides and trains Community First Responders (CFRs) in the Solihull and Birmingham areas of the West Midlands.


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At the BMI: Coding for the Web 101 

26 Jan 16

From Thursday 18 Feb for 5 weeks, 18:00 – 20:30 at the BMI : More and more people are finding themselves needing to write code as part of their jobs, whether it’s updating HTML for a content management system or tweaking colours and layout for a …


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Birmingham writers: is increasing mass protest due to economic stagnation or something deeper? 

23 Jan 16

The author of a recent article in The Conversation , David J.


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Housing 4: the FT reports on John Clancy’s proposals for investment in housing and infrastructure 

21 Jan 16

John Murray Brown reports that John Clancy, the new leader of Birmingham city council, wants to anchor the £11bn West Midlands local government pension fund in Birmingham and the surrounding region, creating a “West Midlands sovereign wealth fund…


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Housing – 3: Council leader welcomes the building of homes with affordable rents 

21 Jan 16

On his website , Cllr John Clancy, the Leader of Birmingham City Council, celebrates the Birmingham Municipal Housing Trust development by Jessups in Nechells and Small Heath (below) – properties offered at an affordable rent.


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Housing – 2: Repair empty homes? 

18 Jan 16

Council leader John Clancy writes ‘Building housing here and now is our first priority’ and to this Our Birmingham adds a recommendation to reuse empty housing.


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Birmingham’s one-year old Borroclub trending: Sunday Times 

16 Jan 16

On the 10 th of January in the Sunday Times , Kiki Loizou wrote about Borroclub.


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TTIP: will government agree to pass massive powers to transnational capital? 

16 Jan 16

Roger Godsiff MP for Birmingham Hall Green, has tabled a Parliamentary Question asking whether government will reconsider support for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership trade deal, following the announcement that a tar sands company …


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Moseley: Boundary Commission meeting 

13 Jan 16

The Boundary Commission recently published recommendations for new ward boundaries which ignored the proposals put forward by the Moseley community.


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The Birmingham Pound: an exciting idea for the city 

12 Jan 16

At Impact Hub Birmingham’s Open Project Night on 18th January 2016 from 18:30 the next steps in developing a local currency for our city will be explored.


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JDC news: workshop exploring alternatives to austerity 

10 Jan 16

Message: Whatever else, Jeremy Corbyn has stimulated a significant debate and shown a willingness to engage constructively with others, which is a challenge that needs to be responded to by people of all parties, all faiths and none.


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Offices abound, but housing? Heffer and Shelter fear there is worse to come 

8 Jan 16

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Invitation to learn more about Birmingham’s first pay-as-you-go all-electric car 

7 Jan 16

Co-wheels Birmingham is a local car club, operated under license by social enterprise Green Revolutions CIC .


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NHAP: facing an attack on the social determinants of health 

5 Jan 16

The National Health Action Party  was set up by health professionals who believe that a political party is needed to defend the NHS and its values.


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Councillor Timothy Huxtable (Bournville Ward) adds to the news of investment in flood defences 

2 Jan 16

Updating an earlier post : “After the Stirchley floods of 2008 (and other minor flooding events previous to these floods) I am very pleased that there has been investment by the Government and Severn Trent in flood defence works in Stirchley.


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Reward for failure: Birmingham’s former chief executive Lin Homer 

1 Jan 16

David Cameron has rewarded a senior civil servant who committed a “catastrophic leadership failure” in the new year’s honours list.


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Government’s unfulfilled 2013 flood insurance promise – but some action taken in Birmingham 

29 Dec 15

The Rivers Cole and Blythe in and around Solihull are ‘ threatening to burst their banks’ according to the Birmingham Mail .


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Council investment policy: government managing dissent? 

28 Dec 15

In this brave new world, ‘predominant concern should be the pursuit of a financial return on investments’ Donald Macintyre reports on ministerial consultations, preparing new procurement guidelines to stop town halls operating “municipal …


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Times review: Birmingham in danger of losing architectural character 

23 Dec 15

This is the title of an article by Edwin Heathcote, architect, designer and author.


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Happy Christmas: despite the ideological glee at making disadvantaged people suffer 

22 Dec 15

The writer tried to ignore the news, cynically announced as the public prepares for Christmas festivities, that – on ‘trash day’ – a total of 36 written ministerial statements and 424 government documents were published, as Parliament rose …


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As the City of London and Cameron’s constituency relax, there is ‘little to celebrate’ for Birmingham 

18 Dec 15

The FT’s Alphaville columnist Cardiff Gardia notes that the very wealthy (we add including the prime minister, one of his homes pictured) have little need for state-provided education or health care; they therefore have every reason – (we add) if…


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The Government’s ‘Muslim Brotherhood Review’: The Muslim Council of Britain Responds 

18 Dec 15

Today a reader drew our attention to the Government’s publication of its long-delayed and controversial review into the Muslim Brotherhood.


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Councillor Anita Ward – a disappointing encounter 

15 Dec 15

A reader who had one brief contact with Cllr Ward a couple of years ago found her conduct very unsatisfactory; have many of her constituents had similar disappointments? We read that – for the second time – Hodge Hill ward Labour Party members …


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Four-square solid citizens: Birmingham Momentum who care for the 99% 

13 Dec 15

Correcting assumptions: from Tom Watson’s vested interest viewpoint ‘a rabble’ – aka people with minds of their own – to the Times-reading onlooker’s, “I think Corbyn is very interesting, but the “Momentum” behind him is a bit …


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WMNEG open meeting in Digbeth 

7 Dec 15

On Thursday 10th December, 5-7 pm West Midlands New Economics meeting FOE Warehouse, 54 Allison St, Digbeth, B5 5TH The main issues on the table will be climate change – the negotiations in Paris, the recent Autumn statement and where Austerity is …


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Small Business Saturday: a boost for the city’s small and independent businesses 

5 Dec 15

Today MP Steve McCabe is backing local independent businesses across his constituency as part of this year’s Small Business Saturday.


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“Whether you like it or not is not the issue” 

4 Dec 15

“(The Madin Library) is an iconic building of the 70s.


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We can be proud of these Birmingham MPs – ‘not in their name’ – as the people of Syria cower 

3 Dec 15

Excellent news in a Facebook entry today that these city MPs voted against bombing the people of Syria.


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Not in MSM: Jeremy Corbyn, MPs Steve McCabe and David Davis reflect on the proposal to bomb Syria 

30 Nov 15

The Labour Party consultation, led by Jeremy Corbyn, has attracted almost 110,000 replies .


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Case for air strikes against Syria based on emotion and hubris: 

30 Nov 15

Received from Steve Beauchampé today: “Don’t do stupid stuff.


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This evening: Birmingham Branch UNA: the UN at 70 

27 Nov 15

Birmingham Branch UNA: Speaker: Rod Fielding, lecturer in the Dept of Politics at the University of Warwick and former board member of UNA-UK.


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Cllr John Clancy, the new leader of Birmingham City Council, appears to share some aspects of Corbynomics – and some negative colleagues 

25 Nov 15

Steve Beauchampé informed readers yesterday that Cllr John Clancy has been elected to succeed Sir Albert Bore as the new leader of Birmingham City Council, by a meeting of the 78-strong Labour group of councillors.


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Tonight: see Stirchley’s restored Edwardian Baths preserving and reinstating many original features 

25 Nov 15

Preview Wednesday evening, 25 th November, 6.30 onwards.


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The Java Lounge’s three stage journey 

23 Nov 15

The arrival of this independent coffee shop in Colmore Row has brought the Hudson building to life again.


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Birmingham Momentum’s student organiser: New Statesman interview: 

23 Nov 15

David Skuzbee recalls: “I first met (Rachael Harris, the founder of Birmingham Momentum) over the summer; she was one of the hardest workers in my phone banking team for the Jeremy Corbyn for Labour Leader campaign, often working from home due to …


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Labour’s recent by-election successes suppressed by MSM; will Birmingham voters also ignore propaganda? 

22 Nov 15

Jonathan Dale and many in the advertisement dependent mainstream media (MSM), readily promote the views of disgruntled MPs.