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Please enjoy and share OUR ONLINE SEPTEMBER ISSUE

Where connected communities can achieve the incredible WIN WIN WIN Pamper Experience

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Powerful Creative Kids

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From Rugby Sprinter to 30+ Mile Runner In January Federico Gonzalez Anton couldn’t run more than 45mins and would be limping home in agony as he ran around his village of Harborne. He’s always been sporty but is a rugby player/sprinter so is all muscle and isn’t built for long distance running.

However, after his aunt, cousin and best friend were all diagnosed with breast cancer in late 2019 he wanted 2020 to be the year he pushed himself out of his comfort zone and so signed up for three crazy challenges linked to the army selection process for paratroopers, SAS and commandos. He’s not ex-army, nor are any of his family but he wanted to choose off road, long distance events with a difference as opposed to a city marathon. All three challenges involve carrying heavy weights on his back and running in tough terrain in walking boots over long distances. They include: • Paratroopers 10 miler – 10 mile undulating run with 40lbs on his back (Sub 1.40hrs) • Fan Dance Event – a half marathon up and over Pen Y Fan Brecon Beacons and back again (Under 2 hours) • Commando’s 30 – 30 miles over Dartmoor with 40lbs on his back (likely 10+ hours)

Since January, 39yr old Fed has been training daily using a programme and peer support from a group of elite army recruitment experts supporting him to reach his goal. Being Harborne based he’s had to frequent the local hills such as Lickey and Clent and has even got up at 5am on a weekend to go and run 1520 miles over the Malvern Hills or The Chilterns as part of his training. He’s been the most improved out of a group of 20, and his dedication to get out and run 5 days a week without fail in rain, wind and scorching sun has been truly inspirational. Fed has done it all through tough conditions with Covid-19, being furloughed, not being able to do any group events to test himself and, also getting runners knee and injuring his IT Band. He’s kept fighting and not given up, seeking professional help and paying for treatment and support. His progress has been fantastic to watch and witness. Obviously with Covid-19, all training has had to be done remotely and two of the three events

C’mon people show your support on Saturday 5th September

“You may have seen Fede running around Harborne, Edgbaston and Northfield during his training-he’s usually seen wearing green and a large ‘Bergen’ (army rucksack) filled with bricks on his back! This Saturday 5th Sept look out for him between 10-12am as he’ll be undertaking his remote ‘Paras 10’ run along the canal from University through Bourneville, Cotteridge and back finishing behind Sainsbury’s Selly Oak - 10miles with 40lbs on his back. Any encouraging words welcomed to get him through this gruelling run!

“For anyone who thinks they can’t do a run or a challenge, Fede truly is motivation for you, the human body is amazing and when you think you can’t go on, you’ve only reached 40% of your true potential!” (supposed to be in July, Aug and Sept) have been cancelled, but he’s decided not to give up and still do each of them himself in September/October. Luckily his brother-in-law (and somewhat of a celeb in the European ultra-marathon

circuit) Tom Macer-Wright has agreed to join him alongside some Truro running club stalwarts to run the Dartmoor hellish 30miler on 10th October.

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Fed outside the house with his bag, ready to go.

For more information on this remarkable young man and his story visit:


Connected communities achieve the incredible Hello and Welcome to September

September is known as a month of change, more so now than ever! People are returning to work and for many anxious parents it’s a new year. Whether your child is just starting school, moving to the next level or finished their education we wish you all a great journey. I would like to take this opportunity to briefly bring all our readers up to speed on the ‘method behind our madness’ (online only, albeit less pages) – Most local businesses have been and, are still being affected by this pandemic, with the sharp drop in advertising we simply can’t cover the costs to print and distribute but… all is not lost. We will continue to share the positivity and love for the wonderful adults and children in our communities, offer up to 60% off advertising to help businesses get back on their feet and, keep our readers in the loop as to who, what and where recommended, trusted and reliable services and products are within the current health and safety requirements in the following areas: Harborne, Edgbaston, Moseley, Five Ways, Hockley, Selly Oak, Bournville, Bearwood, Kings Heath, Kings Norton, Stirchley, Longbridge, Quinton, Barns Hill, Halesowen, Black Heath and Cradley Heath. In the meantime, why not try your luck at not one but two fantastic competitions (pg 4 & 6).

Until next time, good health and stay safe... Angela, and the HEM Life Team Next issue published Friday 2nd October 2020

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Life Stories



St George’s School, Edgbaston; a thriving independent co-educational school from 4-18 years, that provides a personalised approach to education. COVID seems to have dominated our lives for so long now it’s hard to remember when it all started ever. For many It has caused fear and uncertainty and so much of the news has too often been bad news. However, as a nation we have risen above it and we witnessed courage and sacrifice as individuals, institutions and families accomplished some extraordinary things. Schools and examination results have been the subject of argument and anxiety. Parents and students watched with disbelief and trepidation as the political football bounced back and forth between eccentric decision makers. Often today’s articles of faith became tomorrows heresy and the only real certainty seemed to be that the hopes and dreams of young people would be sacrificed on the fires of mismanagement. We are delighted to tell you that St George’s is currently buzzing with good news. We always had high expectation of our Upper Sixth as they really are a bright group. Naturally we were fearful for their grades as their futures seemed governed more by rumour than reality. Well we can put aside our worry beads as their results are not just good, they are outstanding. Many of them are to take up places at Universities across the country where individually they will follow degree courses right across the spectrum of the Arts and Sciences. Some students have decided to pursue courses at local universities where variously, they will study Maths and Computer Science, Architecture and Medicine at the Universities of Birmingham, Coventry, Aston and Leicester. Several students have secured placements on prestigious apprenticeships and internships. GCSE results came out last Thursday. Suffice it to say they were just outstanding. Our kids excelled themselves. The sad thing is that because exam results became a political issue some may be sceptical about our student’s success in the various exams. As any school should, we knew well in advance how our students were likely to perform. Well they did themselves proud, they distinguished themselves and to the naysayers we say ‘your green eye does not diminish their success’. We are pleased and proud to welcome back nearly 70% of our Year 11 students who have decided to return to St George’s for their Sixth Form education. We wish God speed to all of our students and to young people everywhere as they take their first steps towards realising their hopes and dreams. May the road rise before them and may the wind be always at their back. Sir Robert Dowling Chair, St George’s School Board of Trustees

Please contact us at: 0121 625 0398

Let us kick start your future

A co-educational independent day school for children from ages 4-18 years of age.


Life Stories


Illegal placarding crack down

A recent crackdown on illegal placards has seen Birmingham City Council send warning letters to 35 businesses advertising without permission on the city’s street furniture such as lampposts.

Harborne Spa & Clinic. ‘Cream Tea Pamper Experience’ Would you and a partner, friend, mother, father, sister or brother like to be pampered in a relaxed and tranquil environment where your safety is top priority? Harborne Spa & Clinic are giving not one but two lucky HEM Life readers the opportunity to relax and enjoy a ‘Cream Tea Pamper Experience for 2 Guests’ This fantastic prize is for approximately 1.5hrs and includes a 60 minute treatment of your choice, cream tea and a glass of Prosecco. To be in with a chance of winning this prize for two, simply tell us in no more than 50 words why you both deserve this opportunity. Entries by email, please also include a contact number and the area you live in to: A winner will be selected at random on Monday 28th September and notified by e-mail/text

Good Luck!

The Harborne Spa & Clinic Team *Terms and conditions apply. The prize is as stated and no cash or other alternatives will be offered.

The blitz began in early July and is part of the ongoing engagement campaign to help deliver cleaner, greener, streets in Birmingham. Now Trading Standards officers have collated the details of the offending operators and attempted to engage with them to remind them of the law and advised them to take down any other offending signs. Officers will continue to monitor the city’s streets and if repeat activity is discovered, they will not hesitate to move to the next stage – enforcement action. Ultimately, the maximum penalties upon conviction are a fine of £2,500 in the case of an individual or £20,000 in the case of an organisation or body such as a business. Cllr John O’Shea, Cabinet Member for Street Scene and Parks at Birmingham City Council, said: “Placarding is a plague upon our

communities here in Birmingham and causes damage to street furniture. “It is also littering our street scene and is providing those that do it with an unfair advantage over those who pay to advertise their products and services lawfully. We are also concerned that some unscrupulous businesses may use this type of advertising to hide behind an un-registered telephone number. “When we carry out operations like this, we are willing to give businesses a chance to reform their ways – the trading conditions are tough because

of the coronavirus pandemic and we will support business, but once a firm is on our radar acting illegally, there will be no second chance if they are caught disrespecting our environment.” To report any concerns in relation to placards or flyposting, visit:

It’s your funeral… Where saying goodbye means everything

At Mortons we recognise that the present difficulties brought about by coronavirus serve to amplify the anxieties bereavement brings; that’s why we’re on hand to help you through. We pride ourselves upon our professionalism, whilst maintaining a warm and courteous approach. Taking care of the smallest details to make a big difference. Supporting at times of loss, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year For the latest information on how the coronavirus pandemic is impacting funerals, please visit our website. If you need to arrange a funeral for a loved one, let us help with what happens next.

Mortons Funeral Directors Northfield (Head Office) 705 Bristol Road South Northfield Birmingham B31 2JT Tel: 0121 476 9111

Cotteridge 1856 Pershore Road Cotteridge Birmingham B30 3AS Tel: 0121 459 9111

Rubery 218-220 New Road Rubery Birmingham B45 9JA Tel: 0121 453 9111

For many years, funerals have been quite Victorian in their delivery. There’s no reason for this except tradition and yet slowly, very slowly, the tide is turning, and we are seeing some interesting changes in styles of funerals.

Photo: Derek Case

It’s surely right that we should have the funeral WE want and not the funeral someone else wants for us. As a family firm, we are keen to deliver exactly what’s requested (provided it’s legal, decent, honest and truthful) and the blend of the Victorian with a 2020 twist is allowing many families to express the character or lifestyle of their loved one whilst maintaining dignity. We’ve developed quite a selection of ties, because often families request that we wear a tie which perhaps reflects an allegiance to particular football team, a country or lifestyle and our wearing them always proves to be appreciated and a topic of conversation. A printed Order of Service can similarly be designed in such a way to illustrate hobbies or interests, or include a montage of family photographs which bring much-needed smiles to an otherwise sad occasion. And interestingly, we are seeing an increase in families choosing our silver vehicles rather than our black ones – isn’t it great to have the choice? Add into the mix the opportunity for eulogies to be recorded and played on a large TV screen at a funeral together with an endless library of music to choose from and you are really able to personalise the funeral at almost every turn. These are just some ways families can distinguish the funeral and make it unique. Now, I realise that with legislation in place restricting the number of mourners attending funerals (typically 30 at present) may mean that not everyone who wanted to be there could do so. However, with the advent of technology it is now possible for many funeral services to be streamed to those elsewhere and we’ve had many examples of family and friends being part of the funeral whilst in the USA, Canada, Australia and various parts of Europe. The streaming has been a blessing too, for instance when two family members got caught up in delays on the motorway and pulled into the services to watch on their mobile phone. For some, tradition is important and for others embracing innovative ways to personalise brings immense comfort – it doesn’t have to be one or the other it can be a blend of both – you do have choice.

Starting the learning journey early The three-year-olds in our Transition class start school a full twelve months ahead of most of their contemporaries. During that first year, much valuable work is done by our specialist Early Years teachers to instil a love of learning in the children and to lay sure foundations for their future studies. Modern facilities, small group sizes and a homely atmosphere combine to create an environment in which young minds can flourish. Norfolk House School is a leading independent school for children aged 3 to 11 4 Norfolk Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 3PS Tel: 0121 454 7021 Email:


Life Stories


Welcome Back!

It’s very nice to be back writing this column for HEM-Life as we emerge from what has been a very challenging and uncertain time. It was pleasing to see that the lockdown, with the closure of restaurants, pubs and bars, didn’t prevent people from enjoying wine. The wine shelves in supermarkets were beginning to look a bit thin soon into April, and specialist wine shops were reporting sales almost on a par with the Christmas period. No doubt because of the beautiful weather we enjoyed during April and May, rosé and sparkling wine were in particular demand. I suspect too that more than a few bottle recycling tubs were rather fuller than usual! On July 4th, restaurants and pubs were allowed to re-open - subject, of course, to strict social distancing and hygiene measures. As I’ve travelled around, I’ve been very impressed by the creativity and ingenuity of many venues in the re-organisation of their available space in order to reduce the impact of reduced numbers. During August, many consumers took advantage of the government’s Eat Out to Help Out scheme. As well as being of much needed support for the hospitality





Berkmann Wine Cellars

sector, it encouraged people to begin to dine out again, giving them the confidence to return to their favourite restaurants. Many sites have also reported seeing new customers, spurred on by the scheme, and this can only be healthy for the industry at a time when it needs all the help it can get. Finally, you may have read the article I wrote some time ago about the numerous celebrities who have decided to launch their own range of wines. See page 25 at:

One of the favourites is rosé from Provence in the South of France, and the latest to launch one is Kylie Minogue. As I said before, I sometimes wish these people would stick to what they do best – after all it’s not as if they need the money or the publicity. On the other hand, perhaps Ms Minogue will send me a case so that I can review it for you. I should be so lucky …

WIN afternoon Tea for Two Delivered to your doorstep! Jonathans in the Park, Lightwoods House, Bearwood are giving a lucky HEM Life reader the chance to enjoy an ‘Afternoon tea made by afternoon tea artist Marie Havelin’ delivered to your doorstep within a 6 mile radius.

To be in with a chance of winning, just answer the following question: Which style of cooking best describes Jonathans in the Park Saturday evening restaurant? a) Modern French Dining b) Victorian Country House Dining c) Spanish Tapas Dining

Have you seen our roses this year?

Book your visit online Find us on:

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*Terms and conditions apply. The prize is as stated and no cash or other alternatives will be offered.

As we slowly start to head into autumn, the gardening team will be doing all it can to ensure the last flowers of summer continue to bloom for as long as possible and that the later specimens are ready to make their grand appearance. If you visit this month, you’ll still be able to enjoy the cacti and succulents on the Terrace. They’re looking splendid this year and the display is impressive – we’ll be tidying up the area, too, so the beds they are planted in look their best.

For more information please visit us at;

Your support keeps the Gardens growing

A winner will be selected at random on Monday 28th September and notified by email. The winner will receive one of our delightful Afternoon Tea for two Vouchers.

Looking forward to Awesome Autumn

GET BACK E R U T A N O T Take a breath of fresh air this summer in the safety of our beautiful Gardens, where you can get some much-needed headspace. Visitors are welcome to bring their own picnic for the perfect summer’s day out.

Email your answer along with your mobile phone number to:


30/07/2020 14:43

The Rose Garden is also having a spectacular year, with the flowers continuing to flush – the scent is heady, and the colours look beautiful. Deadheading is crucial to keeping roses going, so we’ll be checking the shrubs regularly to make sure we can enjoy as many roses as possible until the end of the month. The dahlias on the Terrace are also enjoying their warm spot this year. If you visit this month, keep an eye on Dahlia imperialis (the tree dahlia), which is located close to the entrance of the Subtropical House. This stunning species flowers later in the year, so we’re looking forward to the late burst of colour. Another of our big tasks for September is working on the new Urban Garden. As you may know, we’re transforming the site of a former Hampton Court Flower Show garden into a space that has four distinct areas that will demonstrate what can be achieved in a small space. The project is being developed with the Friends of Birmingham Botanical Gardens, which has developed and raised funds for the project,

Cactus Garden

which will also be used for demonstrations and activities. Our task for this month is to carry on working on the hard and soft landscaping. It’s coming along nicely and we’re looking forward to unveiling it to visitors once it is completed. We hope we can see as many of you as possible in the next few weeks – we can’t think of a more beautiful place to come and relax.

Post-lockdown planning for the elderly Home Instead Senior Care Edgbaston knows that the COVID-19 pandemic has been particularly difficult for the elderly, who have had to spend months shielding. It must be a relief for those aged 70 years or over who can again enjoy visiting places like shops and cafes, and even attractions like National Trust properties. That said, COVID-19 isn’t over yet, and elderly people will still need to be careful. But it’s not just about handwashing and adhering to social distancing – having a plan to keep an older person safe at home is crucial.

Providing high quality and safe care to suppor t people at home Home care is safe care Our professional and DBS checked CAREGivers are required to protect you and themselves and are highly experienced and trained in using a combination of social distancing, infection control procedures and wearing PPE as guided by government. Personal care

Home help

Keeping you safe and happy at home Award winning care Same CAREGiver each visit Highly trained CAREGivers Our CAREGivers can facilitate activities to help stimulate the mind and body Helping you stay connected with friends and family


Telephone: Call us: 0121 721 0300 8937

Dementia care

012 0123 #StayHomeInstead #stayhomeinstead Each Home Instead Senior Care® franchise office is independently owned and operated. Copyright © Home Instead 2020.

A winter spike of cases could happen, and winter brings its challenges pandemic or not. With local lockdowns being introduced, it might not take much for the elderly to have to shield again. Or some elderly people who are particularly high risk may choose to stay at home for longer than they are told. Returning to shielding, and doing so for the long-term, might seem unbearable to many. But Home Instead Senior Care Edgbaston advises that it can be viable if elderly people and their families start to plan and consider various options:• Self-care: find activities that maintain physical and mental health which can be done at home. It’s key to not neglect the rest of your health as you protect yourself from COVID-19. • Support from loved ones: checking on elderly relatives or delivering food might not be as easy for relatives as it was during the height of lockdown. As the furlough scheme period ends, many are returning to work, giving them less free time. Elderly people – or their relatives – should find out who can pay them visits, and how often, if they need to shield again. • Volunteers: find out what support charities and public sector organisations have available for the elderly. An emergency community response hub has served many over 70s in Birmingham throughout the pandemic, fulfilling a number of services from delivering food to combating loneliness. • Home care: having a professional coming into the house and performing duties, even just help with cooking and general companionship, will help maintain an elderly person’s health and wellbeing. It’s a safe care option, since it minimises the care recipient’s contact with other people, and caregivers will be fully trained and in full PPE. Loved ones can rest assured that their relatives are being looked after by qualified carers that have become a familiar face. Home Instead Senior Care Edgbaston provides care in your own home, and their friendly team understands that an elderly person’s home is where they feel the most comfortable and happy. Whether it’s one hour a week or 24/7 live-in care support, our caregivers provide clients with a range of services, from light housekeeping, to help with bathing and dressing, to companionship. For more information, please call 01217 218937 or visit:

Iron Man raises £1,600 for charity 13yr old Zachary Michael from Harborne volunteered to take on a school challenge that was close to his heart after his dad’s bother and his wife both had cancer, he has friends who have also had cancer or passed away.

‘Outstanding’ and ‘Excellent’ - ISI Inspection

Experts in educating girls

“When Zachary told us he had chosen to do a school challenge. I looked at his mum and thought, job for you! He then explained his chosen challenge was to raise money for Cancer Research UK and he’d decided to do an Iron Man! It would be spread out across the month of August, 112 mile cycle, 26 mile run and 3 mile swim! The problem was it was the 7th August he told us about it.” said Dad Steve. Zachary focused and with encouragement from his friends Sam Rotherham and Eddie Blythe, the running started, the swimming and family cycle rides were notched up. It was the early morning run in the rain and then an evening swim that impressed Zachary the most. He finished the cycle with a 22 mile bike ride and the running with a 4 mile run. “We are so proud of our son and very thankful to all of you that have helped him surpass his donation target of £200 by a staggering £1,400.00, raising over £1,600.00 for cancer research.” added Steve.

Dancer makes Britain’s Got Talent Semi-Final

The wait was finally over for 11 year Yakub on Sunday evening (30th August) as the Britain’s Got Talent judges deliberated before finally revealing the semi-finalists for this year’s competition. Ecstatic whoops of joy and cheers could be heard all through the town.

Yakub, who trains with Mezzo Dance Company in Harborne and Stratford-upon-Avon was through! Yakub wowed all four of the Britain’s Got Talent judging panel and received a standing ovation with his stunning The Lion King routine at his audition back in April and will now dance a new routine in the first set of semi-finals on Saturday. Yakub has been training with Adam Nightingale and Kirsty Nicholls for the past two years at Mezzo Dance Company. He trains at least 12 hours a week. Adam and Kirsty are so proud of their young protégé. “We cannot be more proud of our superstar! He has worked so hard over the past couple of years and we have watched his talent grow and grow! He deserves to go all the way! We can’t thank his loyal supporters enough – our social media channels exploded after Saturday’s announcement with good wishes and congratulations from all around the country.” Yakub has also received unfailing support and encouragement from his foster carers, John and Juliet Short, over the past two and a half years. Proud Juliet will be standing in the wings with Ant and Dec as Yakub dances his semi-final and says, “Yakub has had an amazing BGT journey so far and making the semi-final has completely boosted his confidence and he’ll give it his all!” Yakub says, “I’m buzzing that I have got through and so excited to be able to dance again and share my new routine with the BGT audience. It will be a bit nerve wracking and the biggest and best thing I have ever done in my life. I can’t wait!” The BGT semi-finals will start at 8.00pm on Saturday 5th September on ITV. Yakub’s family, friends and MDC team mates will be part of television history as they take their seats in the first every BGT virtual audience.

An independent school for girls aged 21/2 -18 years

WHOLE SCHOOL VIRTUAL OPEN MORNING Saturday 19 September 2020 Email to register your place.

We st b o u r n e . P re p a rato r y . S e n i o r . S i x t h Fo r m Transport from Sutton Coldfield, Streetly, Solihull, Stourbridge 0121 454 5831

Jonathans in the Park

Authentic Victorian Country House Restaurant and Tearoom YEY WE’RE OPEN


10am until 4pm weekdays 10am until 5pm weekends Until further notice we are NOT open evenings

to homes and offices.

Tel: 0121 420 1888 Facebook @ JonathansinThePark


Passed by Sandwell Councils Health & Safety Executive

Experience the Taste and Ambience of Yesteryear REGULAR HIGHLIGHTS

Jonathans in the Park Quintessential Afternoon Teas Jonathans Quality Corporate Catering Opening Times

Weekdays 10am to 4pm Weekends 10am to 5pm

Relaxed Traditional Sunday Breakfast 10am - 12 noon Sunday 3 course Lunch 12 noon - 4pm Please book in advance to ensure you are not disappointed

Jonathans in the Park

Lightwoods House, Adkins Lane, Bearwood, Smethwick B67 5DP • Telephone: 0121 420 1888 •


Entrance to car park is on Adkins Lane B67 5DP *Vegan, vegetarian and allergen awareness are important factors to us, we strive to maintain a very high degree of mindfulness when dealing with these areas of concern.


07966 291730 or



Janet Eastwood BA (Hons) Lic Ac MBAcC “Helping you look after your health”


Pain Fertility Pregnancy Facial enhancement Sleep problems Addictions

Welcome back!

We are now open for business again in a new clinic location Multibed and Private Appointments Available Multi-bed treatments: Mondays and Thursdays Private treatments: Tuesdays and Fridays Our new address is: Euro Skin Clinic, 370 Court Oak Road Quinton, Birmingham B32 2DY Please call or text to make an appointment:

07707 878 549

Prearrange Your Funeral Reassure your loved ones that your funeral is the one you wanted - not the one they hoped you wanted. We offer two ways of prearranging your funeral: • Prearranged funerals without prepayment • Prearranged funerals with prepayment For more details simply ask for our brochure.

0121 476 9111 Offices in Northfield, Cotteridge and Rubery Professionally Qualified Independent Funeral Directors

“When times are good, you should advertise. When times are bad, you must advertise.”

Curtains • Blinds • Soft furnishings


t: 0333 366 0279 e:

Are you open for business? Spread the word with cost effective advertising. Single Ads £20 – Double Ads £30 Call Angela on: 0333 366 0279 Visit or Contact Us: email: Lapal House, Lapal Lane South,Halesowen B62 0ES Tel: 0121 503 0326 e:


Curtains Pelmets Blinds Materials Soft Furnishings Curtains Blinds Soft furnishings Poles and Tracks •

Curtains Pelmets Blinds Materials Soft162 Furnishings M: 07815 283 Email: Poles and Tracks

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Harborne, Edgbaston & Moseley Life, September 2020  

Hyperlocal community newspaper. News, Business, Property, Lifestyle & Sport, where connected communities can achieve the incredible.

Harborne, Edgbaston & Moseley Life, September 2020  

Hyperlocal community newspaper. News, Business, Property, Lifestyle & Sport, where connected communities can achieve the incredible.

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