Village News


Weekend of community spirit

Barnt Green’s inaugural Community Weekend raised £5,000 for local charities and provided visitors from the village and beyond with a great day out.

Library manager bows out

Alvechurch Library will host an afternoon tea party as a farewell to library manager Alyson Williams, who is retiring in July.

Gardens of Alvechurch

Don’t forget that the bi-annual Alvechurch Open Gardens event takes place on Saturday and Sunday June 25 and 26.

Shelter for outdoor lessons

Pupils at Rigby Hall School in Aston Fields will now be sheltered from the elements as they enjoy their “Forest School” lessons, thanks to the Rotary Club of North Worcestershire.

Sam is British champ

Blackwell triathlete Sam Boswell can now call herself “British champion” after coming first in her category at the British Middle Distance Triathlon.

Squash success

Two Barnt Green youngsters helped England to victory in the Five Nations squash tournament.

Roll up,  roll up!

There was plenty of clowning around at this year’s Blackwell Festival, which brought villagers all the fun of the circus as well as music, games, stalls and sideshows.

Royal revels at Lickey Festival

The inaugural Lickey Festival celebrated the Queen’s 90th birthday with music, dancing, cakes and cider – plus a visit from some exotic animals!

Crafty fundraising

Blackwell’s 35th Craft Fair at the Methodist hall on Greenhill raised £134 for Leanna Horne, the Bromsgrove thrower who is hoping to go to the Paralympics in Rio.

Bob is back

A village resident has bucked the naming farrago spreading through Alvechurch by restoring the name “Bob Hopping Street” with a home-made sign.

The ‘great lake’ returns

The “great lake” of Alvechurch returned in June, to the dismay of parish councillors who had been warning the temporary fix to the railway car park was a waste of money.

Parish ‘yes’ to bus shelter ideas

Three murals are to be installed in a village bus shelter with designs created by local children.

Hill speed trap

Speed monitoring will be taking place at Hopwood Hill over the next six months after legal problems with speed limits were finally sorted out, Alvechurch Parish Council heard.

Landowners warned over travellers

Alvechurch Parish Council is urging village landowners to take precautions to prevent incursions by groups of travellers over the summer.

Plan comes out of retirement

Retirement home developer McCarthy & Stone has not given up on its plans to build an apartment block on Green Belt land close to the centre of Alvechurch.

Rugby stars and royal fun

Earlier this year, Year 4 children from Finstall First School won the Sport Relief Tag Rugby tournament at Bromsgrove RFC, beating St Andrew’s First School in the final.

Happy birthday to us!

The summer fair at St Andrew’s First School in Barnt Green celebrated the fact that both the Queen and the school are 90 years old this year.

Bikes to Benidorm and back

A group of friends are aiming to raise £20,000 for a village charity with a marathon cycle challenge.

Birthday bash

Pupils at St Andrew’s First School in Barnt Green marked the Queen’s birthday as well as their own 90th anniversary – they are the only church school in the country to have been founded in the year of the Queen’s birth.

Village parking plea

The problem of street parking around Barnt Green was in the spotlight once more when residents from Oakdene Drive implored parish councillors to take action.

Lost jewellery

Alvechurch Library has found a tiny piece of jewellery.

The Merrie Meadows!

This year’s Alvechurch Picnic in the Park had an ‘Olde Englande’ theme to mark Shakespeare’s 400th birthday. . . and there were plenty of other attractions, too.

Tea parties for the elderly

A village group is aiming to help isolated elderly people by offering monthly tea parties where they can reconnect or make new friends in their own community.

Barnt Green’s big weekend

After watching neighbouring villages hold successful Open Gardens events each year, Barnt Green has decided to get in on the act for 2016 – and it’s going one step further by hosting a weekend of charitable community events.

A dozen delights in Alvechurch

A dozen gardens will be open for the National Gardens Scheme in Alvechurch on Saturday and Sunday June 25 and 26.

Hospice garden is ‘People’s Choice’

Primrose Hospice in Bromsgrove has won two prestigious awards for its first-ever entry at the RHS Malvern Spring Festival.

Concern for road safety

Sarah Rees reports from the Oakalls and Parklands . . .

Could you host French students?

A Cofton Hackett resident who has hosted visiting French students for the past three years is encouraging more people to get involved.

Church school’s unique history

Barnt Green’s village school has a unique claim to fame – it has been discovered that St Andrew’s is the only church school in the country to be founded in the Queen’s birth year, 1926.

Bollard victory

A story in The Village about the missing bollards in the centre of Barnt Green has prompted Severn Trent – which parish councillors say removed three of the bollards when attending to a water leak – into agreeing to pay £600 for replacements.

Family’s fun day

A Cofton Hackett family who raise funds for Birmingham Children’s Hospital with an annual fun day for friends and family are hoping to make this year’s event even bigger.

Tree officer to investigate claim

Bromsgrove District Council’s Tree Officer is investigating claims that a tree protection order for land on Cherry Hill Road, Barnt Green, has been breached.

Hats off to Fin!

Just over a year after young Alvechurch fundraiser Finlay Church broke the Guinness World Record for the longest line of teddy bears, his family and friends paid tribute to him by smashing another record.

Charlie chases ‘freehold farrago’

Barnt Green Councillor Charlie Hotham has vowed to “keep chasing” Bromsgrove District Council to secure the freehold lease on its new premises.

Rail footbridge hope

A railway footbridge costing around £1 million is now the likely solution to the closure of the popular village footpath skirting Cofton Hackett and Barnt Green.

Village Views



There is nothing village dwellers like more than tradition: say anything against morris dancers and woe betide you; have a go at horses leaving manure on the roads . . . well, lock up your doors.

Lawton’s View

JULY 2016

Lawton's View July 2016

Minority give dog owners bad name

Walking across between The Meadows playing fields and Old Rectory Lane, I saw that some irresponsible dog owner had left poo bags on the fence.

High praise for the Alex

People are very quick to criticise the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch but I for one would like to express how good they are. 

Rowney speeding slur

I was disgusted to read the letter titled Racing Through Rowney Green in the June magazine.

Spend on signage, not traffic-calming

May I draw attention to a parallel between two items in your June 2016 issue?

Speeding will lead to fatal accident

On reading your June 2016 issue, it is plainly evident that there are serious speeding issues in Weatheroak, Alvechurch and Rowney Green.

Lawton’s View

JUNE 2016

Lawton's View June 2016


There are many recurring themes of village life, almost all of them positive. Many of us have, tucked away at the back of our minds, the idea that we don’t suffer the negatives of city life and have instead only to step a few hundred yards to be in countryside or to find special views across beautiful landscapes.

Racing through Rowney Green

I was interested to read the letter regarding the traffic in Alvechurch. As a resident in Rowney Green and horse owner I have never seen such a change in the traffic on Rowney Green Lane.

Capturing the beauty of our villages

I have taken some photos in the village area for your consideration. I hope you like them.

High speeds are not acceptable

Your correspondent Michael Lewis is right about speeding, with folk flooring their cars in order to get to work on time.

Cameras required to quell speeding

The residents of Weatheroak have been lobbying every official body for a decade or more regarding speeding traffic. 


People make a place, no matter how pleasant the surroundings. So it has been uplifiting to see, first, the swell of support at a public meeting in March to highlight the plight of a crisis-hit youth and community project in Alvechurch, and then to find that had crystallised into people stepping forward to offer their help.

Leave pavements for people and prams

It strikes me that the footways are just wide enough for people, prams, scooters and dogs on leads. . .

Walls have ears

The village of Alvechurch is renowned for its gossips and we certainly get plenty going on for them to talk about!


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Village Features

Musical mystery solved

The history of a fondly-remembered village band from the swinging sixties.

Artists’ homage to Hockney

Although there are original basic sketches by David Hockney that go up for auction at £10-£15,000, if you want something really striking by the artist it will cost you considerably more – indeed, one of his paintings sold for £5.2 million in New York in 2009.

Open garden party

A Marlbrook garden enthusiast who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease two years ago is hosting a special summer garden party in aid of the Parkinson’s UK charity.

Made in Chelsea

Hannah Genders discovers two special show gardens.

Life by the waters

Mary Green points out highlights of Bittell and Hopwood.

Consider an annuity for retirement plans

“Annuity” is no longer a dirty word, writes Austin Broad.

Flares back in fashion!

Amateur astronomer Brian Watkiss peers into the Village night sky.

Jazz gig makes for a hot night

A night of jazz music in The Ark at St Laurence Church, Alvechurch, saw George Huxley’s Hot Five Jazz Band playing to a packed house, writes Keith Woolford

Summer starts warm and wet

Alvechurch amateur weatherman Phil Thomas records the changes.

Rugby fun for all ages

North East Worcestershire Ravens Rugby League Football Club (NEW Ravens) are offering a summer season of rugby league-based activities to suit most levels of interest, age and experience.

Success for star students

Students from a local stage school are celebrating excellent results for solo exams in Musical Theatre and Individual Acting Skills.

Tale of two Alfreds

A Barnt Green resident aims to ensure that his uncle, who died 100 years ago in the First World War aged just 15, is not forgotten.

Vinny the hospital visitor!

Cofton Hackett resident Sandra Whitby was the latest winner of a Mini Vinny in our competition, having spotted him when her husband brought her the magazine to cheer her up during a stay in hospital.

Village Archive: 10 years ago…

A look back at what was going on around here in July and August 2006.

Villagers with stories to tell

Sally Oldaker reviews four recent books by three local authors.

Grandad’s army

Village reader Robert Andrews brought us a photograph of the Alvechurch Home Guard in 1945, featuring his grandfather, Percy Horrix.

Perfect country pub

Sally Oldaker and Louise Robinson pop in to The Coach & Horses Inn to see its new look and sample the food and drink.

Those were the days

Our May article on village band The Cellarmen offered a detailed history of the group thanks to memories from former members and fans – but there was one gap still to be filled in.

In the driving seat

Sally Oldaker meets a village racing driver who followed his dream.

Make a positive change

There are many options available for those wanting to make a positive change in their lives, including life coaching, hypnosis, Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).

Advanced scan for eye health

Don Williams of Eye Opticians explains how early diagnosis means a better prognosis.

Cupitt celebrates 70 years

Bromsgrove jeweller marks its ‘platinum anniversary’ with a very special range of hand-crafted engagement rings.

Probus group learns pottery history

Members of the Kingfisher Probus Group recently visited Middleport Pottery at Burslem; the home of Burleigh ware and of BBC2’s The Great Pottery Throw Down, writes Malcolm Shine.

A summer of English song

St Bartholomew’s Church at Tardebigge (B60 3AH) hosts the popular Celebrating English Song series at 3pm on three Sunday afternoons this summer, featuring a starry collection of performers.

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