Village News


Blackwell’s first Music Festival!

Organisers of Blackwell’s inaugural Music Festival are encouraging people to buy their tickets now to avoid disappointment.

Alvechurch soldier remembered

Alvechurch Library is marking the 100th anniversary of the Battle of the Somme with a special exhibition.

Floral display lifts station

While Alvechurch rail users and parish councillors are still unhappy with the new station’s infrastructure, at least it has been brightened up for the summer by some beautiful wildflowers!

Giving notice

The Worcester-Birmingham & Droitwich Canals Society has installed two new noticeboards on local canal bridges.

Duo of Burcot gardens on display

Two gardens in Burcot will be open to the public under the NGS on Saturday August 27, between 12 noon and 5pm.

Temporary tenants

Sarah Rees reports from the Oakalls and Parklands . . .

Wilde about Vinny!

Ben Wilde, a 12-year-old Alvechurch resident, was the latest winner of a Mini Vinny in our competition.

A dozen garden delights

Alvechurch held its bi-annual Open Gardens event, with 12 very different gardens raising money for charity under the National Gardens Scheme.

Lickey mums raise charity cash

A group of mothers from Lickey Hills Primary School are raising funds for a fellow mum’s cancer treatment.

Silver for sea cadet

Hopwood youngster William Wortley is celebrating a second place in his first-ever district sailing competition.

Canadian canoe challenge

An Alvechurch man has helped raise more than £145,000 for Cancer Research UK by competing in the world’s longest annual canoe race.

Hollywood to Cofton Hackett

Cofton Hackett and Barnt Green have a new curate, as Rev Sheri Gidney comes to work alongside Canon Rob Fieldson.

Farewell to Alyson

Villagers, friends and colleagues past and present gathered to say farewell to Alyson Williams, who has retired as manager of Alvechurch and Wythall Libraries after 12 years of service.

Rail station budget hits the buffers

There is no money left to complete the refurbishment of Alvechurch rail station, parish councillors heard.

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.

Road calming plea

Alvechurch Parish Council has joined the call for action after yet another car crash at dangerous bends on the main road out of the village towards Redditch.

Post office pledge

The Post Office has pledged its commitment to maintaining a service in Alvechurch.

Heat is on over smell

As summer temperatures rise, one group of villagers say they can’t leave windows open because of the smell from lorries carrying animal parts.

Cricket stars raise cash

Cricket stars Dougie Brown and Ashley Giles hosted the annual charity curry night in Barnt Green’s Deedar Indian Restaurant.

Garden party for gargoyle

The annual garden party at Burcot Grange care home raised £730 for Blackwell First School’s gargoyle restoration.

Going, going, gone!

Villagers are mourning the loss of a landmark tree that had to be felled after a giant bough fell into the grounds of a children’s nursery.

Scenic route starts here

A village centre bus shelter has been brightened up thanks to the efforts of youngsters from the local youth project.

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.

Village Views



This edition of The Village has blossomed unintentionally into a gardens special, so we hope most of you will enjoy seeing what the industrious villagers of Barnt Green and Alvechurch have been doing on their patches.

Lawton’s View


Lawton's View August 2016

Rainbow brightens Alvechurch skies

My daughter Caitlin took this photo of a rainbow after a shower.

Appreciation for milkman

I would like to say thank you for the last 50 years that George has been delivering milk to residents in Cofton Hackett.

Hopping mad at new sign

Why has someone re-named London Road as “Bob Hopping Street”? I first thought it was a joke, but the sign remains in place.

Where has new name come from?

Regarding your photo of the new sign for “Bob Hopping Street” (The Village July 2016). As a child growing up in Alvechurch in the 1950s, I distinctly remember that there was a road sign by the chip shop naming the alley from Red Lion Street to Bear Hill as “London Road”.

Why are police not using powers?

After Alvechurch Parish Council urged landowners to take precautions to prevent incursions by travellers on their land (The Village July 2016), I recently wrote to our newly-elected Police and Crime Commissioner, John Campion, on this subject.

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.


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.

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

JULY 2016

Lawton's View July 2016

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.


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Village Features

Musical mystery solved

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

South Africa – our best holiday yet!

Blackwell travel counsellor Jane Ward plans a tailor-made trip.

Service sparks success

A village electrical business has proved so successful that it has now launched its own town centre shop.

Bliss celebrates eighth birthday

Popular Alvechurch salon Bliss Hair Therapy has notched up eight years in business thanks to its expertise in ladies’ and gents’ hairdressing, the team’s passion for the job they love and their care for each individual client – backed by support from loyal customers.

AFC ready for action

Alvechurch FC gears up for a new season with new signings.

Penstemon power

Hannah Genders revamps a sustainably-sourced garden.

Bring on the sunshine!

With summer in full swing, it’s time to make sure you’re in shape to enjoy the sunshine!

Further afield

Mary Green compares the wildlife of Scotland, Africa and home.

It’s all in the service

Austin Broad highlights two types of investment advice.

Shooting stars and diamonds in the sky

Amateur astronomer Brian Watkiss peers into the Village night sky.

Hot July brings humid nights

Alvechurch amateur weatherman Phil Thomas records the changes.

Provest celebrates 20 years of quality service

Paul and Liz Tracey of Provest Financial Solutions LLP are celebrating their 20th year in business.

Gardening through the generations

When Di Morgan opens her Marlbrook garden for the National Gardens Scheme in August she will be following in the footsteps of her father and grandfather as a third-generation Worcestershire gardener.

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.

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