Postal Voters if you haven’t yet received your form don’t miss your chance to vote in the EU elections

Screen Shot 2019-05-03 at 21.27.06

 

Many people who have applied for a postal vote have still not received their forms to enable them to vote in the forthcoming EU elections.

If this is you and you are going away soon consider applying for a proxy vote instead. The  Proxy voting form can be downloaded, scanned or photographed and sent to the electoral office by email to electionsoffice@birmingham.gov.uk

The deadline for receipt of the proxy form by the council is 5pm Wednesday 15th May

 

 

 

 

EU 27 Citizens are you ready to vote? Don’t let youselves be disenfranchised.

a8b06cfa-7c1f-49ef-9875-063b35976430

Citizens of other EU countries who live in the UK can elect to vote for UK MEPs in the European elections on 23rd May. I contacted Birmingham City Council in early April and they assured me that a  form UC1  will be sent out by Council Elections Office automatically to EU27 citizens registered to vote in the UK.

The form needs to be completed and returned to the elections office  no later than Tuesday 7th May, even if it has been completed previously.

However, as I write Birmingham City Council has been woefully slow in this, with many EU27 citizens not having received anything and others contacted by email only. The local Liberal Democrat Councillors are now chasing the Elections Office to find out what is happening.

So don’t leave it to them. Download the form UC1 and send it to ensure your vote

Failing to engage properly will only lead to more disenfranchisement of EU citizens in the UK.  As this  Article in the Independent   describes, the introduction of extra administrative burden, poorly handled by local authorities resulted in a dramatic decline of EU27 citizens voting in the UK, falling from 1,043,629 registered to vote in 2009 to 327,883 five years later in 2014.

If you are not registered to vote, you have to do so AND return the UC1 form by
7th May 2019. You can find more information on what to do here: Your Vote Matters
If you wish to vote in Birmingham this is the address of the Elections Office.

Elections Office
Council House
Victoria Square
West Midlands
Birmingham
B1 1BB
Telephone: 0121 303 2731
Fax: 0121 212 1065
Email: electionsoffice@birmingham.gov.uk
Opening Times:
Monday to Thursday: 9am to 5pm
Friday: 9am to 4pm

The  Liberal Democrats are the STOP BREXIT party, consistently fighting for YOUR RIGHTS since the referendum and we fully support the campaigning of the The 3 Million

Let’s be leaders not quitters! 

 

Screen Shot 2019-04-24 at 20.18.18

 

 

Screen Shot 2019-03-19 at 23.57.33

It is very worrying that the people behind the Parkfield School protest against the No Outsiders programme are now taking their message to other schools, including Anderton Park School in Moseley and are being encouraged in this by a community neighbourhood forum. They are allegedly intimidating parents into signing a petition to get this approved programme, which is taught as part of the Equality Act, removed. These actions amount to homophobia and need to be challenged. We have been down the route of censoring schools on LGBT+ rights before, and we can never do so again. Equal rights relate to faith, disability, age, gender and sexuality. We cannot pick and choose.

Join EU in Brum to march in London on Saturday

42812306_1656394981126949_7253808014681964544_n-1

 

EU in Brum have booked their fifth coach to the Peoples Vote March  next Saturday 23rd March. There is a discount of £5 on seats for students, free seats for children and for some adults if anyone is struggling. Buses will depart from the City Centre and from Kings Heath. You can book your places here if you haven’t already. 

The meeting point in London is the Achilles statue at 11am. Liberal Democrats will meet outside the Dorchester Hotel, Park Lane

Liberal Democrats  have led the fight for remain from the beginning- we will be joining people from all over the UK on Saturday to demand an #exitfrombrexit

Camp Hill Chords planning threat. Last day to make comments.

52829692_412081309622259_5648145348749688832_n

I’ve made my comments on the planning application that could compromise the Camp Hill Chords, and so prevent frequent passenger rail services from Moseley station when it re-opens:

(See previous blog  here )

Re: Planning Application 2018/09467/PA, 193 Camp Hill, Highgate, Birmingham, B12 0JJ

Redevelopment of the site to provide 480 no. homes, a hotel (Use Class C1) and flexible business/commercial floor space of 1,480sqm (Use Classes A1, A2, A3, B1, B2, B8 and D1) in 7 new blocks (A to G) ranging from 3 to 26 storeys, together with car parking, landscaping and associated works including an energy centre of 320sqm to provide for combined heat and power and plant to serve the development

“I am writing to you on behalf of thousands of  residents in Moseley and Kings Heath who have campaigned and desired for many many years for the Camp Hill railway line to re-open to passenger services and to provide a frequent service commuter rail link into Birmingham City Centre. This topic has been number one in any political hustings for many years!  We were always told that the issue stopping it happening was the cost of building the Camp Hill chord – a link to redirect the trains to Moor Street station as New St does not have the capacity for the extra services.  In 2013 Moseley Forum was made aware that the land where a developer is now seeking this permission to build was to be sold by Birmingham City Council. They together with other community groups and local councillors objected to the sale on the grounds it could compromise the later building of the Camp Hill chord. However, Birmingham City Council in their wisdom, dismissed the need to protect the route of the link railway line stating they could ‘always compulsorily purchase it back’ at a later date.
In September 2018 Transport for West Midlands, West Midlands Rail Executive and Network Rail unveiled initial designs to rebuild  stations at Moseley, Kings Heath and Hazelwell with the expectation the line will re-open to allow two passenger services an hour into New Street station, in time for the 2022 Commonwealth Games. This news was received with enormous excitement and anticipation locally but also many calls to West Midlands Mayor, Andy Street to ensure that the construction of the Camp Hill chord would still happen, so the line will in time become a fully functional high frequency train service. He fully acknowledged this call and stated that the opening of the line earlier than expected would not stop later construction of the chords which are now referenced in the Birmingham Development Plan, the Bordesley Area Action Plan, the West Midlands Local Transport Plan, in the proposed enhancements pipeline for the London North Western route and in the long-term strategies of Midlands Connect and West Midlands Rail Executive.
Network Rail is currently carrying out development work on the Midlands Rail Hub on behalf of Midlands Connect; a Strategic Outline Business Case is due for submission to the Department for Transport by summer 2019.
The Camp Hill chord would allow up to 10 extra trains an hour in and out of Birmingham, that’s 85,000 extra seats a day. This will enable many more passengers into and out of Birmingham so easing pressure on our already congested road system and reducing vehicle emissions both in the centre and suburbs of Birmingham. The Midlands Rail Hub project  is being developed by Midlands Connect to significantly increase passenger capacity to and from Birmingham from across the Midlands and the South West. Early analysis suggests the Midlands Rail Hub could bring overall economic benefits of £649 million a year to the region and the country by 2037.
Network Rail stated in 2017 that the work that included the Camp Hill chord was worth up to £2billion of economic benefits through unlocking jobs and supporting economic growth and maximising transport connectivity.
If this planning application is approved the subsequent development has the potential to block the alignment and construction of the Camp Hill chord preventing the expansion of and long term desired frequency of rail passenger services. This would be a huge blow for the Birmingham and West Midlands community. Economic and environmental drivers will be severely and critically harmed if this planning application is allowed to go ahead in any form that prevents the city from installing the Camp Hill Chord.
On behalf of the  community of Moseley and Kings Heath I ask Birmingham City Council planning committee, when considering this application, that as a very minimum sufficient land is protected to enable the construction and accommodation of an up and down south/east railway link at Bordesley from the Camp Hill railway line, known as the Camp Hill chord.
I also urge the applicants and developers to work  with the council, with Network Rail and local rail community groups to protect the future alignments of the proposed Camp Hill chords and to  explore mutually beneficial opportunities for both developments to avoid any impediment to the chords’ future construction.
Izzy Knowles
Moseley Liberal Democrats” 

URGENT: Save the Camp Hill chords

The recent consultation events in Moseley, Kings Heath & Stirchley regarding the re-opening of our train stations to passenger services has caused much excitement that this long fought for project is now finally happening. I have not spoken to one person who doesn’t think it is a good idea.

Having  secured the backing of  Government and Regional authorities, the West Midlands Rail Executive, Transport for West Midlands (TfWM), West Midlands Railway and Network Rail are now working together on the track, signalling and service changes required.

We even had West Midlands Mayor Andy Street and Secretary of State for Transport Chris Grayling visit for a tour of the Moseley station site and the unveiling of the station designs. In a press release by West Midlands Railway  in September Cllr Roger Lawrence, the Chair of West Midlands Rail Executive, said: “The Moseley line is part of the wider investment TfWM is making across our region”

But, the current plans to re-open the stations will result in a maximum of only two trains an hour.  This is due to the lack of capacity for trains into New Street Station. In order to develop the line into a fully functioning commuter service, which connects not only to services from New St but also to HS2 when it arrives, we need the Camp Hill chords to be built. This is an extra section of track which would divert the line into Moor Street station and part of integral plans to create a Midlands rail hub so significantly increasing rail use across the region.

This is now all under threat

51795588_2267616696628957_3081096035049668608_n
Image from 2013 showing where the proposed railway chord would cross the land being sold.

In 2013 the city’s Labour cabinet,  despite representations from opposition and community groups, decided to sell off the piece of land on which the chords would be built. At that time, it would appear they clearly didn’t have any optimism that the project would ever take off like it has. 2013 Press article

Now the inevitable has happened and the land the council sold off has a planning application to build a hotel, housing and retail complex. We understand the West Midlands Rail Executive, Transport for West Midlands, Midlands Connect and other Rail user groups are objecting to the proposed development.

The Camp Hill Chords are critical to the long term resilience and success of the rail network in and around Birmingham, to ensure effective public transport so minimising the need for vehicular traffic and  enabling Birmingham to meet it’s emissions targets

Moseley Liberal Democrats are calling for as many people to add their voice by commenting on the planning application  Comment online here

The planning application number is 2018/09467/PA 

URGENT – We have until 1st March to make comments. 

 

 

Lib Dems in Hall Green Demand Better than an MP who doesn’t care.

42812306_1656394981126949_7253808014681964544_n-1This week our Hall Green MP Roger Godsiff voted with a dozen other Labour MP’s to torpedo the Cooper and Grieve amendments, which would have been a way out of this nationally embarrassing Brexit impasse and also voted for the batshit crazy Brady amendment which kicks the can down the road.

All these things making a hard chaotic crash out Brexit more likely.

This is despite his writing to his overwhelmingly remain supporting constituents to say ‘I do not believe Theresa May’s deal is acceptable to the majority of my constituents and will not be supporting it’ and ‘I will not support proposals to leave the EU without any agreed deal’.
Labour propped up the Tories on immigration the night before (Roger didn’t even bother to vote). And now they’ve propped up the Tories on Brexit again. 

Britain deserves a better opposition than this chaotic Labour Party – and the Liberal Democrats will provide it.

If you want to send a message now is the time. Join us to fight against this chaos.

Join the Lib Dems for £1 a month

img_3301

I’ve been a member of the Lib Dems for two years and have found nothing but support, encouragement and unity. We don’t argue, we work together. We are a small force but we punch above our weight when it comes to holding the bigger parties to account, both locally and nationally in a whole range of issues.

 

 

Help us to make your voice heard – in Moseley, in Birmingham, in the UK and in Europe

LIBERAL DEMOCRATS DEMAND BETTER – JOIN US

 

School Road Closure – Your chance to comment.

School_Road_northbound.jpg

For anyone wanting to see the history of the School Road closure scheme please see my previous blogs:

Traffic Management in School Road 

School Road Traffic Issues- An update

School Road Closure Scheme gets closer

School Road Closure – latest

I was not able to attend the engagement event on January 11th but I have received feedback from many residents with concerns.  These include the continuing lack of traffic studies and no detailed rationale on why this particular option has been chosen over the other five options that were presented at the meeting on 24th January 2018 (other than it received the highest number of votes from people who happened to attend the meeting).

The council has published a map showing their preferred alternative routes,  (see below). They are hoping traffic currently using School Road as a cut through between Moseley & Kings Heath will be forced to use Alcester Road or Springfield Road, Billesley Lane & Wake Green Road.

school_road_alternative_routes_map-page-001
School Road scheme -Alternative Routes

 

Although the closure will undoubtedly lead to a reduction of through traffic on School Road between Prospect Road and Valentine Road roundabout, (which is a good thing) it will not prevent drivers meeting each other on the bend. It is also hard to see why into city traffic used to entering School Road from Poplar Road or Ashfield Road, is likely to re-route along the already congested A435, or Springfield Road, rather than cut down Cambridge, Prospect or Greenhill Roads for a quicker route to Billesley Lane. Similarly in the evening, what is to stop traffic travelling out of city to use Oxford Road rather than busy Wake Green Road to reach Billesley Lane. All of these roads are residential side roads with similar problems to School Road. Even Springfield Road & Billesley Lane which are favoured alternative routes are not without traffic problems, with speeding and volume already an issue, frequent accidents at the junctions and even fatalities in the past. These are questions to which no answers have yet been given.

Right from the beginning of this process I have argued that the best possible solution should be the one that addresses the problem, with the least impact on surrounding roads. It is also important that the community is fully consulted and involved in the process, and we are given the fullest information to enable the best possible decision. Without any impact traffic studies to inform and advise us it is hard to make informed comments.

I have now joined a group of residents who are collecting our own data in an attempt to understand the traffic flow and volume of the area at peak times. We will make our findings available to the Council Officers and anyone else who is interested. If you would like to help please let me know.

A resident led petition calling for a full consultation and traffic impact assessments on the original six options, before any preferred scheme is selected, will be presented at the full City Council meeting on 5th February. You can sign it here: Online petition    (NB: This is a different petition to the one featured in my previous blog although they make similar representations).

Following representations the council has now published more information about the scheme with a survey where you can make comments – although they confirm this is not a formal consultation – the decision has been made:  Council Survey here 

I would love to see Moseley (and other parts of Birmingham) become a low traffic neighbourhood. I have long supported Moseley Forum’s vision for a more pedestrian and cyclist friendly Moseley village. I would also like to see an informed engaged community fully involved in the process, which should properly take into account all of the pinch points, accident hot spots and rat runs in the neighbourhood so the very best scheme can be devised and properly communicated for maximum possible success.

I have been knocking doors to gauge peoples opinions on this scheme and how it has been presented so far. I would welcome your feedback.

 

 

Happy New Year from Moseley Lib Dems

 

HYE 2019

Happy New Year from Moseley Lib Dems. Going into 2019, as we feel the affect of the uncertainty and roller coaster of current national politics, here’s to the community spirit, camaraderie, openness and neighbourly support that will keep us together. Xxx

School Road Closure – latest

Screen Shot 2018-12-20 at 22.30.07
Following my last blog on this matter (see post November 1st) I made further representations to the Council Officers, and to Councillor Jenkins, calling for a full consultation to take place and an updated traffic impact statement to be prepared before the experimental scheme is put in place (see copy email I sent below).
Residents have now received a letter from our Councillors regarding the experimental closure:
IMG_3350 2
It is disappointing that no formal consultation will take place
I welcome the proposed drop in engagement event on Friday 11th January and that the matter is now being progressed, but I am disappointed, as are many residents, who have contacted me since, that, despite multiple representations and earlier promises , a more formal consultation has not been conducted to involve the wider community who will be affected by this.
I will ask that the information be made available at other events, for example via Moseley Forum or at the Moseley Exchange as not everyone is going to be in a position to attend on 11th January or have access to the online documents.
I will also continue to call for an up to date traffic impact assessment to take into account the affect on surrounding roads especially near to the schools.
You can access some information on line  here
You can also send your comments to connected@birmingham.gov.uk
Loss of School Crossing Patrols
A further concern that needs to be considered is the Council’s proposal to withdraw funding for the remaining School Crossing patrols in Birmingham. This will include patrols at both Moseley and Kings Heath. You can see more about this proposal and comment on it in the recent council budget, which is out for consultation. (See page 41).
Petition:
A local resident has started a petition calling for better consultation for Moseley and Kings Heath residents about the School Road proposal and traffic management in general.
You can view and sign it if you wish here:
My email:
From: Izzy Knowles 
Subject: Re: School Road Traffic Issues
Date: 4 November 2018 at 00:03:00 GMT
To: Councillor Kerry Jenkins 
Cc: Joe Green  Gill Brook 

 

Dear Joe & Gill
I would like to make some representations please and I also have some more questions:
Firstly:
Consultation:
On reading your update I was surprised when you said no formal consultation will take place prior to the experimental order, and instead it would be an ongoing consultation during the implementation of the scheme.  Since I communicated your recent update to residents a number of people have expressed their concern to me that they feel this scheme is being pushed through without  their having been given the chance to formally comment on the proposals. I believe that the Councillors have also received similar emails.
I have now looked back through previous correspondence and re-read the letter Gill emailed in July which I circulated to some residents at the time (I attach for your info). The letter clearly gives the impression a formal consultation was to be held after the summer holidays. (It also places the closure in a different place which has also caused confusion although Gill did clarify that in a later email). Therefore mixed messages are being sent out here.
I am still very concerned, as I have been since the beginning of this process, that there are many residents who live in roads that will be directly affected, but who are still unaware of the proposal because they don’t use email or social media. Your proposed letter notifying them of the implementation of the experimental scheme will be the first they will be informed of what is happening. I anticipate some will not be very happy at not having been formally consulted, and the scheme being experimental will not appease them.
Therefore I would urge you to please re-consider and conduct a formal consultation scheme prior to the experimental scheme beginning.
Secondly:
Traffic Impact studies:
The scheme is being implemented in order to stop dangerous driving in School Road between Prospect Road and Valentine Road. The main issue is when drivers meet each other head on, due to parked vehicles and the narrow road and vehicles are driven onto the pavement or road rage incidents occur. This is a real problem and I totally support the School Road Traffic Issues residents in their desire to make this road safer.
The proposed scheme to close off part of School Road further down past Greenhill Road will undoubtedly reduce traffic on the entirety of School Road as it will no longer be used as a a convenient alternative route between Kings Heath and Moseley, especially at peak times. Traffic is more likely to be local residents moving in and out of the immediate area.  However traffic is still going to be able to travel two ways along that section of School Road. Having stood and watched traffic this evening , even at a quiet time of a weekend the same problem of  cars not being able to pass each other is still occurring. What guarantee do we have that there will still not be incidents where cars meet each other on that section of road?
There is also the issue of where the displaced traffic will head at peak times, I would suggest the most likely routes will be Billesley Lane and Oxford Road. These roads are not so narrow as School Road, but have suffered from safety issues in the past, including a fatal accident in Billesley Lane ,before traffic calming measures were put in, so residents are understandably concerned at the impact of an increase of traffic.
Although the proposed scheme of closing School Road will be experimental, the outcome will hopefully be that it does the job and becomes permanent. Otherwise a lot of time and money will have been wasted.
Therefore I urge that an impact study be undertaken before the closure, to measure vehicles traveling along that section of road and to consider the displacement on both the nearest likely commuter roads (Billesley Lane and Oxford Road) and the adjoining residential through roads, (Ashfield, Greenhill, Blenheim, Prospect & Cambridge Roads) This would not only reassure residents but also provide a benchmark to measure against during the experiment.
 Other questions I have been asked:
How will the road be closed? Will it be a physical barrier such as bollards or will it be traffic regulation signs? If the former will emergency vehicles have access and how?
When is the experimental order likely to begin?  Can we please have a proposed timeline.
Thank you for your time and efforts with getting this right.
Very best wishes
Izzy

 

Izzy Knowles 
Moseley Liberal Democrats

National Day of Action 8th December

fullsizeoutput_2e9c

Join Izzy & local people from EU in Brum to show your support for a Peoples Vote on the Brexit deal.

Meet outside Waterstones, Bull Ring between 11am and 3pm Saturday 8th December

This event is going to be big- and it needs to be, as it’s the final weekend before Parliament votes on the Withdrawal Agreement drawn up by Theresa May and the EU. We know all too clearly that the Withdrawal Agreement will badly damage the West Midlands in so many ways, leaving us poorer with less money for essential public services.

We are a country divided, but leaving the EU under these terms will not bring us together and will continue the arguments for years to come.

Many people have changed their minds on Brexit and Birmingham as a city would now vote to remain. Check your post code here to see more

THIS IS THE EVENT TO COME TO IF YOU WANT YOUR VOICE TO BE HEARD!

 

What is your experience of the new bus routes?

images-1
How are the new bus routes working for you?
Do you think the National Express bus routes and timetables introduced in July are better than before or is there still room for improvement?
The bus company is consulting with Councillors on Wednesday 5th December and I’d be interested to know comments from Moseley bus users which I will pass on.
The main changes in Moseley were to:
The No 1 route, which saw the addition of a no 1A to the QE Hospital but reduced the frequency to Five Ways.
The no 2 & 3 so they now both go along Stoney Lane
The no 5 re-routed from Springfield Road / Stratford Road to Wake Green Road / Yardley Wood Road and then Showell Green Lane
A reminder of the changes can be found here

 

Land at rear of Moor Green Lane/ Cadine Gardens

Birmingham City Council are consulting local residents about the demolition of six garages at the end of Cadine gardens, off Moor Green Lane. The letter mentioned a development on the patch of council owned land which boundaries on to 276-284, Moor Green Lane, Cadine Gardens, Moor Green Primary School & Seaton Grove, but gave no further details.

Scan

Following enquiries we have established that there are no current plans to sell the land but it is being considered as a site for affordable housing, to be managed by the   Birmingham Municiple Housing Trust

The council are aware that the site is heavily infested with Japanese Knotweed, which has spread into some neighbouring gardens. An appraisal has been done and it is planned to treat the knotweed over the next 12 months.

Moor Green Primary School have permission to use part of the land as a Forest School, however they have been asked not to go onto the site until the knotweed is fully eradicated.

You can find copies of  the following documents here which give more information about the site:

16517 – Final Site Plan

Map / Aerial plan showing ownership by committee. Blue is Housing land, Yellow is Education and Green is Leisure.

Cadine – holding by committee aerial 20 11 2018

 

Cadine-Pipe-easementboundary
Plan showing the easement for the sewers, highlighted yellow. This is the land which cannot be built on in the event of Severn Trent accessing the sewer. The proposed modules are shown along the boundary and in the middle

The council has identified the potential for modular homes along the boundary with the school and in the space between the two sewer pipes but  would provide further information for consultation when these have been finalised.

Some information can be found here about the likely design of the modular homes being considered Birmingham City Council modular housing plan

If you have further questions let me know and I can try to get answers for you.

Alternatively the Senior Housing Development Officer, Simon Felton is happy to answer questions as is the lead officer on the project Claire Carr. You can contact them on 0121 303 5722

simon.felton@birmingham.gov.uk 

Claire.Carr@birmingham.gov.uk

It is important to note that nothing has yet been finalised and no planning application has been made. There will be a full consultation before anything is agreed.

If you have any signs of Japanese knotweed in your garden I advise you to inform Simon Felton.  It is illegal to allow it to spread. You can find government information on identifying and approved methods to dispose of it here 

If you should see Japanese knotweed in local parks or open spaces you can report it to the council here

Screen Shot 2018-11-22 at 18.27.41
Key identifying features of Japanese knotweed

WooHoo the train is getting closer!

Moseley Overhead

Consultation is now open for the re-opening of the Camp Hill Line between Birmingham New Street and Kings Norton to passenger services,  with new stations at Moseley, Kings Heath and Hazelwell to offer passengers journeys of less than 15 minutes into New Street station.

Transport for West Midlands and West Midlands Rail Executive invite the public to view and comment on the proposals online between 13/11/2018 – 14/12/2018 – you can access the survey here , or in person at one of the drop-in sessions below.

FINAL_flyers_deliver_12112018-page-001.jpg

Council Budget 2019 – Have your say

download.jpg

Birmingham City Council has opened it’s budget consultation for 2019/20.

You can view the proposals and make your comment here

The council needs to make additional savings of £86 million , on top of the annual savings, totalling about £690 million that the Council has already made from 2010/11 up to 2018/19. This will mean that they will have reduced spending on services to residents and businesses by total annual savings of around £775 million over a twelve year period.

The council propose an increase of 2.99% in Council Tax in 2019/20 and 1.99% in later years. In addition they propose to raise a “Social Care Precept” by increasing Council Tax by a further 2% in 2019/20 to provide extra funding to meet the costs of social care. This would result in a combined increase in Council Tax of 4.99% in 2019/20

Clearly the council are in a difficult position. However there are still a number of questionable priorities. And your say is important in helping get it right.

One proposal for example includes a 25% cut in the budget of the flytipping team by £300,000. They will only investigate where there is a high likelihood of prosecution, which in reality means they will leave themselves with little choice but to pick up all dumping without investigation.  In contrast the settlement following last year’s waste strike means another £2.5m has to go into basic waste collection services.

 So we will have the crazy situation where you cannot overstuff your wheelie bin but if you dump it in bags round the corner it will be collected.

Please make your comments. It is important we all make our voices heard.

Birmingham Liberal Democrats lead the way for remain.

IMG_2890
Izzy Knowles with members of EU in Brum presenting the petition at Birmingham Council House
Yesterday Birmingham City Council formally approved a motion to support a People’s Vote with an option to Remain in the EU, provided a) that any deal reached by the Conservative government was rejected by Parliament and b) that there was no possibility of a general election being called in this scenario.
A petition of almost 2000 signatures, from all parts of Birmingham, collected by local campaigners, EU in Brum , was presented to support the motion, which was tabled by Birmingham Liberal Democrat councillor Jon Hunt.
The motion initially called for the City Council to commit to a People’s Vote with an option to Remain, but the Labour leader of the council, Ian Ward, called for the inclusion of the provision of a general election. The compromise was enough to secure the votes, illustrated by a show of hands in the Chamber, of a majority of the Labour, Liberal Democrat and Green councillors in the room, after a series of passionate speeches from voices such as Mike Ward, Morriam Jan, Paul Tilsley, Julien Pritchard, Sir Albert Bore and Martin Straker-Welds
You can watch the debate on Birmingham City Council’s streaming service here  Go to no 10 on the agenda – the debate starts at 04.38hrs into the meeting.
This vote is symbolic because this is the largest local authority in Europe and because this is a local authority which very narrowly voted to Leave in 2016.
It follows on from Channel 4’s programme on Monday evening, hosted live from Birmingham that revealed a new Survation poll which showed that if the referendum question was asked now, Remain would win 54% to 46% Leave. Drilling into the detail, it shows that Birmingham would now vote to Remain too: you can see for yourself  https://www.survation.com/what-does-the-british-public-now-think-about-brexit/
Moseley Liberal Democrats played a big part in helping the Birmingham Liberal Democrat group to bring this motion to the Council.  Once again Liberal Democrats are at the forefront of making things happen .
We would like to thank every one of you who signed the petition, everybody who helped Izzy tirelessly to get signatures, Councillor Jon Hunt for putting the motion forward and Councillor Fred Grindrod for helping to develop cross-party support for the People’s Vote principle.
Now, we must move on to persuading other Birmingham MPs and our Metro Mayor: already, we have seen Yardley MP Jess Phillips joining the People’s Vote campaign, and our own MP Roger Godsiff in Hall Green also calling for a Peoples vote
This again is a symbolic action, because Mr Godsiff becomes the first MP who supported a Leave vote to support the idea of a People’s Vote. But it shows he is responding to the level of campaigning and concern from his constituents.
Izzy is organising a non party affiliated Hall Green Constituency Peoples Vote group. Join her and other campaigners at The Village Pub, Moseley on Thursday 15th November from 7pm or contact her izzyknowles@gmail.com
IMG_2894
Campaigners with Cllrs Mike Ward, Carl Rice & Roger Harmer

BREXIT: Sign the petition – before it’s too late!

uaMWywEmSbYovat-800x450-noPad

Grass roots campaigners from EU in Brum have launched a petition to Birmingham City Council to support a Peoples Vote on the final Brexit Deal with an option to remain in the EU.

It’s not too late to sign the petition – click HERE

Pressure has paid off and  Birmingham City Council will debate the motion on Tuesday 6th November. 

Moseley Lib Dems are calling for more signatures to the petition which will be handed over by Jon Hunt, Lib Dem leader at the Council, who has put forward the motion.

Many Moseley business owners are extremely worried  about the uncertainty of  the Brexit deal, and especially how they would be affected by no deal or by leaving the single market.
It will also negatively affect a large number of the Moseley Farmers Market traders.

This is really important. We won’t get another chance. To show the strength of feeling is from all over Birmingham, we really need you not only to sign the petition, but PLEASE EMAIL your local Councillor (find them here) to ask them to support the motion, and specifically to support a People’s Vote, with an option to remain.

If you can collect paper signatures from people who don’t go online, please email me (Izzy ) at izzyknowles@gmail.com and I’ll send you a printable GDPR compliant form to use.

If you would like more information on how you can get involved in the Birmingham People’s Vote campaign please get in touch izzyknowles@gmail.com

Over 30 councils across the UK have now backed calls for a People’s Vote and another 20 have debates scheduled, including Birmingham City Council, where leave won the referendum result by the tiniest of majorities.

Now we know the full extent of the harm that could be inflicted to the city by Brexit, it is absolutely essential that the British People, and the people of Birmingham, who only voted to leave by the narrowest of margins, and are the youngest and most diverse population in the UK,  get a chance for a meaningful vote to ratify or reject the final Brexit deal and an option to remain in the EU.

School Road Closure Scheme gets closer

26961860_933588140155236_5270100869917463165_o

NB: THE PROPOSAL TO MAKE VALENTINE ROAD ONE WAY (IN THE DIAGRAM)  IS NO LONGER GOING AHEAD 

I previously posted in this blog on the School Road closure scheme  ( see Sept 11th, July 20th & Jan 29th).

Following an update from Cllr Jenkins to Moseley Forum on Tuesday 29th Oct I  wrote to the Council for  some clarification.  I have copied below a reply I have received from Joe Green of the Transportation & Connectivity Team.

I’ve also had previous confirmation that the letters will be sent to residents along the entire length of School Road, any road that leads directly off School Road (and roads leading off these), Valentine Road and Cambridge Road. Also (after I made some representation) it will now include Oxford Road between St. Mary’s Row and Billesley Lane, and  Billesley Lane between Wake Green Road and the junction with Cambridge Road/ Southlands Road.

From: Joe Green
Sent: ‎31/‎10/‎2018 16:48
To: Izzy Knowles; Gill Brook
Cc: Councillor Kerry Jenkins
Subject: RE: School Road Traffic Issues

Hi Izzy,

I sent some further information across to Cllr Jenkins this morning, on the back of a request from discussions at last night’s Moseley Forum meeting.The meeting you mention was requested by School Road Traffic Issues Group to provide them with an update, and was attended by Phil Edwards and myself.

Further answers to your questions are included below:

Please can you confirm whether an engineer has been allocated to the scheme yet and if so who it is?

Yes, this project has now been approved and funding allocated. It will be overseen by Natalia Haberko in our Infrastructure Delivery team. Gill and I are currently in the process of handing everything across to Natalia for taking things forward, but we will continue to be involved to support the communication and engagement elements of this scheme.

Will there be any formal consultation either before or during the experimental period?

A letter drop of the local area is being organised to inform residents of what is happening. It is envisaged that this will be sent out week commencing 12th November.

It is not necessary to hold formal (statutory) consultation for an experimental traffic order, other than with the emergency services who are in the process of being contacted.

There will be ongoing consultation while the experimental traffic order is in place, and any views or comments submitted during this period will be recorded to help inform future decisions.

How long do you envisage the experimental period to be?

The maximum length of time that an experimental traffic order can remain in place for is 18 months, after which point it is either progressed to a permanent intervention (pending formal consultation) or removed. It is generally seen as good practice to keep an experimental traffic order in place for a minimum of 6 months, but there is scope to remove it sooner than this if deemed necessary.

There is scope for the scheme to become permanent if it is deemed that the experimental road closure has been successful. However this would be subject to a formal consultation process – and this would need to have been completed within the maximum period of 18 months for an experimental traffic order for there to be no break in the provision of this intervention.

What traffic surveys are planned to  take place before and during the experimental scheme?

Natalia will be developing monitoring arrangements for this scheme, which will include traffic counts before and during the experimental closure.

There is some existing data from traffic counts carried out at locations in the area last year that can potentially be used, and we will work with the local engineer to identify locations for any further counts; they have already suggested that the junctions of Oxford Road/St Mary’s Row and Billesley Lane/Wake Green Road should be included.

I hope these answers are useful, we are keen to keep local residents informed of what is happening and shall continue to seek to do so.

Please do get in touch if there is anything else you would like to know at this stage. Regards, Joe

Joe Green, BA (Hons)

Transportation Behaviour Change Manager

Transportation & Connectivity – Economy Directorate

Birmingham City Council

 

From: Izzy Knowles [mailto:moseleylibdems@gmail.com]
Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2018 2:26 PM
To: Gill Brook
Cc: Joe Green
Subject: Re: School Road Traffic Issues

Hi Gill & Joe

I learned from Cllr Jenkins last night at a Moseley Forum meeting that a meeting has taken place with the School Road Traffic Issues group and the funding has been approved for the experimental scheme. There was also a suggestion that as it is an experimental scheme no further consultation will take place following the letter,  which is still to go out to residents.

Please can you confirm whether an engineer has been allocated to the scheme yet and if so who it is?

This scheme is going to cost a lot of money to implement so it is important we get it right, otherwise it will be money wasted. I am concerned that the decision to carry out this experimental closure has been made with very little consultation and there are still people who will be directly affected who do not know it is taking place.

Will there be any formal consultation either before or during the experimental period?

How long do you envisage the experimental period to be?

I’m also concerned that proper measures need to be taken to correctly survey the amount and speed of traffic on these roads and potentially affected roads, both before and at periods after the experiment, so that the scheme can be properly evaluated.

What traffic surveys are planned to  take place before and during the experimental scheme?

Are you able to please update me on these points?

Best wishes

Izzy
Izzy Knowles
Moseley Liberal Democrats

 

 

 

 

Improving the junction of Pershore Road/Priory Road/Edgbaston Road – Have your say.

Screen Shot 2018-10-26 at 14.48.29

Birmingham City Council are consulting on their plans to improve the safety and efficiency of the junction of Pershore Road, Priory Road and Edgbaston Road, and to provide a cycle route between the new  A38 Bristol Road cycle route  and the  National Cycle Network Route 5 at Cannon Hill Park.

Moseley Liberal Democrats support these proposals, especially with the pending developments at Edgbaston Cricket Ground, the hotel opposite and Pebble Mill that will all add to traffic in the area.

You can see and comment on the proposals  here    Consultation closes on 9th November.

It’s not too late to get the bus to London tomorrow. #peoplesvote

IMG_2420

Local grass roots pro EU group EU in BRUM  have organised coaches for local people to travel to London on Saturday 20th October to take part in the Peoples Vote march.

Buses will be leaving from Brunel Street, City Centre or opposite Goose pub, Kings Heath.

They still have a few seats left including free places for students and people who otherwise would not be able to go. You can book them here:  Bus tickets to London

E Mail  euinbrumbus@g.mail.com for details of free tickets.

Liberal Democrats and the Greens are the only parties that have consistently championed Britain’s membership of the European Union. We believe that Britain’s best chance to succeed is within the EU.

While we respect the outcome of the referendum held in June 2016, we believe that Britain is a more prosperous country when we are part of the world’s largest economy, working in partnership with our closest neighbours and allies to tackle the biggest challenges.

We believe that free trade is a good thing. It creates jobs, increases prosperity and helps pay for things like the NHS, schools and public services.

Our livelihoods are improved because of free trade – including through our membership of the Single Market. That is why we are fighting for Britain at the very minimum to remain a member of the Single Market.

It is becoming more and more clear that the final deal will not deliver any of the promises made by the Leave campaign prior to the referendum,  which is why we are also calling for the government to give the British people a vote on the final deal that they negotiate with Europe.

The terms of Brexit will have a huge impact on jobs, security and the opportunity to travel and live abroad, and the Tory Brexit government should therefore be made to put their deal to the British people before it is finalised.

Waste collection service changes – warning disruptions ahead!

Screen Shot 2018-10-05 at 10.45.28.png

Birmingham City Council Waste Collection Services have re modelled their methods of collecting waste. This is to implement their agreement with the Trade Unions to move the crews from a 4 day x 10 hour shift to a 5 day x 7.5 hrs shift pattern. As a result the rounds and crews have been changed. This may cause some disruption as the new crews will have to get to know the quirks of the new rounds.

If you experience a missed collection report it on line  here 

If it still isn’t collected after several days,  or you experience repeat missed collections contact  Izzy at moseleylibdems@gmail.com  or local Councillors and we will chase them for you.

West Midlands Lib Dems march to the Tory Conference

40160006_1146618878796215_4096876253187932160_o

On Sunday Lib Dems across the West Midlands will be taking part in the ‘ Bin Brexit in Brum’ march and rally in the city centre.

This event has been entirely organised and funded by local people in their own time – the grass roots remain movement ‘EU in Brum’  – to remind the Conservative Party conference participants that the Midlands do not want to leave the EU, as any kind of Brexit will hurt the region a lot.

All evidence points to the fact that the West Midlands Economy will be damaged in any scenario, but especially devastating will be a no deal Brexit. Birmingham Mail. Devastating effect of no deal Brexit

Even West Midlands Mayor Andy Street in an answer to Izzy at the recent Ask Andy event at The Prince of Wales acknowledged that leaving the EU without a deal would be catastrophic for business in the West Midlands Andy Street ‘s answer to Izzy at Ask Andy event as reported in the B’ham Mail

Local Moseley business owner George Howell of Indigo Wholefoods also describes the damage to his business by the uncertainty of Brexit.   Indigo Wholefoods and the impact of Brexit

It is becoming clearer by the day that no Government is going to be able to deliver any of the promises made by the leave campaign before the referendum. No one voted to make our region poorer and the  consequences that would result from loss of manufacturing and closure of small businesses.  There is no such thing as a ‘Jobs first Brexit’.

Come to Victoria Square from 11, the march will leave there at 12pm and return around 1pm for the rally, where we will have exciting speakers and music including Moseley band The Lost Notes.    The Lost Notes 

The touring musician industry would be especially hit by loss of freedom of movement rights and customs checks on equipment.

fullsizeoutput_2b9f
Poster outside the Hare and Hounds in Kings Heath

The event will finish between 3 and 4.

You can register your interest and find out more here:
https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/bin-brexit-in-brum-march-and-rally-tickets-48906010193
https://www.facebook.com/events/422114528254258/

While we want you to bring as many flags as possible,  part of the march will go along the tram lines at Corporation Street, so any flag poles should be under 2.5 meters long, and carried very carefully through this part.

If you can volunteer as a steward for the march and/or rally, or for litter picking afterwards, please get in touch with hello@euinbrum.org . Or message Izzy. Any help is very much appreciated.

See you on Sunday!          #ExitfromBrexit

Preserving our grass verges

 

IMG_9390

On Wednesday at The Moseley Meeting I supported residents in bringing up the issue of constant parking and driving of vehicles on the open grass verges where Stoney Lane meets Yardley Wood Road  between Esme Road and Phipson Road. 90 residents have signed a  petition  calling for trip rail or other preventative measures to prevent the parking.

The Anderton Park Residents Association have been asking for these measures for some time, they campaigned years ago to stop the  green space being built on, but since then they have seen the road become more densely used by traffic, witnessed the grass being damaged by an increasing number of cars and vans being driven and parked on it and experienced children being deterred from playing there. They have in the past planted bulbs with the school children from Anderton Park School, and they regularly litter pick to keep it tidy. At one stage the area was even costed up for trip rail, but it was never installed.

I have had email conversations with the head of the Parks Department and the District Highways Engineer  over the last six months to ask for trip rail to be installed.  Springfield Police have . been contacted to deal with the parking on the grass, which is illegal. Letters were sent by Highways to the residents and several fixed penalty tickets were issued by PCSO Peach. However this has not deterred drivers from continuing to park on the grass area. As one individual or family stops doing it another takes over. The council departments have been supportive but a more long term solution is needed and we need funding to make it happen.

I have witnessed myself numerous instances of cars and vans parking and driving across the verges.  The area does not have any other safe green space for children to play close to their homes and  children play on the greens whilst cars are parked there. If the green verges were railed off to prevent vehicles accessing them we would create a nice safe space for families and children to enjoy and the residents  could utilise the space for  other family friendly projects such as bulb planting, games and community events.

The council would not have to repair ruts, potholes and damage to the pavements caused by heavy vehicles and police time could be better taken up with other issues. The green space is also important to help reduce the traffic pollution in the area

The green verges are wholly in Sparkhill Ward, however the petition shows there is a demand for this action from residents of both Sparkhill and Moseley Wards.   There is a budget for each ward to use for verge protection and minor transport measures. This is a small budget and there will be other needs to be considered in both wards however I believe this project should be seen as a priority need. It is possible if necessary we could fund some of the cost through an application to the Active Citizens fund or other similar scheme.

I  have sent the petition, together with photos to the Councillors for both Moseley and Sparkhill wards, the Police Sergeants for each ward ,Mike Hinton of the Parks department and Garry Dalton, the Highways Engineer and I have offered to work with them to get approval and find funding for this scheme.

 

I hope to have some feedback by the next Moseley meeting in November

IMG_1778

image013

Further update to the School Road closure proposal

Further to my previous posts on this (January 29th & July 20th 2018) I  received the below email from Gill Brook in answer to queries I raised. I have written back to ask that both Billesley Lane and Oxford Road residents are included in the letter to be sent out.  

From: Gill Brook <Gill.Brook@birmingham.gov.uk>
Date: Mon, 10 Sep 2018 at 10:16
Subject: RE: School Road Traffic Issues
To: Izzy Knowles <moseleylibdems@gmail.com>
Cc: Joe Green

Hi Izzy, thank you for your email. The information on the School Road Issues Facebook page was taken from a direct response to an email they sent in to our assistant director. The response was as follows:

Dear School Road Issues group

Thank you for your email of 13th August in response to the message sent out by Gill Brook on 19th July. I would like to respond to the points you have raised as follows:

  1. I can confirm that the experimental closure is still proposed for between Cotton Lane and Greenhill Road. There appears to have been a discrepancy between the information that was shown at the meeting in January 2018 and what was passed on from this. Apologies for any confusion, this has now been clarified.
  2. Before any scheme can be implemented, we need to take the proposal through the city council’s project management process, to obtain approval and release the required funding. The paperwork for this has been written, and is due to be taken through the first stage of this process on 10th September. With regards to the letter drop, this is not to formally consult on the experimental order but to make local residents, businesses and schools aware of what is being proposed as a matter of courtesy. There are many local people who would be affected by an experimental closure of School Road, and we need to make sure people in all local streets are informed of the proposal.
  3. Once the project management process is complete, and letters have been distributed across the local area informing people of the proposed experimental closure, the management of this scheme will be handed across to the local engineer. They will make the necessary arrangements for the implementation of the scheme. It is hoped that the timescale for this will be in the next couple of months. I am happy to look to arrange a meeting with yourselves along with relevant officers and local Councillors if you feel that this would be useful for further clarification and discussion. 

With regards to the questions you have asked:

  • The 64% figure refers to the total responses we received, including those from the meeting, and those we received after the meeting, including those that you kindly forwarded to us.

The total number of responses we received was 109.

This was made up of :

3 in favour of Option 1

1 in favour of Option 2

7 in favour of Option 3

28 in favour of Option 4

70 in favour of Option 5A/5B

  • We will be sending the community wide letter to the entire length of School Road, any road that leads directly off School Road (and roads leading off these), Valentine Road and Cambridge Road. The area will be bounded to the north-east by Oxford Road and to the east by Billesley Lane (but will not include these roads).
  • The public meeting was a resident led initiative, and therefore this is something that you would need to speak to the organisers about.

I hope that the information above answers your queries.

Kind regards, Gill

Gill Brook  BA (Comb Hons)

Senior Transportation Officer – Transportation Behaviour Change

 

Moseley (mostly) goes from Hall Green to Kings Heath. Constituency Boundaries Report released.

Screen Shot 2018-09-10 at 14.32.10

The Boundary Commission for England has released it’s final report on the revision of Parliamentary Constituencies in England.

You can read the whole report here: Boundaries Review

It still has to be voted through Parliament but if approved it will be implemented at the next General Election.

Birmingham will lose one MP overall with some wards joining up with neighbouring areas. To add to confusion the changes have been based on the old council wards rather than the one’s that were introduced in the council elections of 2018.

Moseley & Kings Heath will come into a new constituency called Birmingham Kings Heath, joining up with Billesley, Brandwood & Bournville.  However anyone living in the parts of the new Moseley Council ward who were originally in Springfield or Sparkbrook, will remain in a constituency called Hall Green.

That does not mean local Councillors or ourselves will no longer represent everyone in the new Moseley ward. It  means we will have two MP’s covering different parts of Moseley rather than one.

Screen Shot 2018-09-10 at 14.32.10.pngScreen Shot 2018-09-10 at 14.32.27

Screen Shot 2018-09-10 at 14.59.56.pngscreen-shot-2018-09-10-at-14-59-37.png