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KNOWLE & DORRIDGE

MAGAZINE MY FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

SHAGGY IS IN BRUM FOR KISSTORY PRESENTS: THE BLAST OFF TOUR >>>INTERVIEW INSIDE<<<

LOCAL BUSINESS DIRECTORY INSIDE

See page

CHANGING BAD HABITS TO CONQUER

30

STRESS & ANXIETY

40,000

Over local readers

? e ntin

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FOOD • LIFESTYLE EVENTS • HOME & GARDEN & DORRIDGE, • FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020 1 & DRINKMY KNOWLE PHOTO CREDIT JOHNATHAN MANNION


Solihull’s Luxury New Care Home MARKETING SUITE NOW OPEN If you’re considering care options for yourself or a loved one, visit our new Marketing Suite at Fountains Care Home. Meet our friendly team and experience for yourself what life will be like in our home, before our official opening in spring 2020. • Bespoke residential, dementia and respite care • Daily life-enrichment programme • Choice of nutritious and delicious home-cooked meals • Interactive multi-sensory environment for residents living with dementia

Tel: 0121 514 8369 www.barchester.com/Fountains 1355 Stratford Road, Shirley, Solihull, B90 4EF Our Marketing Suite is open at the following times: Tuesday–Sunday: 10am–5pm and Thursday: 12–8pm Minibus • Café • Private dining • Spa bathroom • Hair salon • Wi-fi • En-suite rooms

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MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020


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MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

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Cullen

17 Whitacre Rd, Knowle cullenplumbingandtiling@gmail.com

Tel: 07896 862 916 Established in 2005

Plumbing & Tiling  Full bathroom and ensuite design and

installation to the highest standards with complete project management from start to completion

 Kitchen Sinks and Taps, Dishwasher and Washing Machine Installation

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Call Alex Cullen

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MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020


Contents

FEBRUARY / MARCH COVER STORY 26-28

SHAGGY IS IN BRUM! COMMUNITY ACTIVITY

19

WORD ON THE STREET LEISURE & RETAIL

12

LET’S SAY GOODBYE TO FAST FASHION

13

2020 LESSONS IN LOVE

11

WHAT’S ON GUIDE HOME & GARDEN

25

HOT TIPS FROM BHAM BOTANICAL GARDENS LOCAL INTEREST

17

ANDY STREET: SOLIHULL LEADING THE WAY WITH HOMLESSNESS SCHEME EDUCATION

16

TUTOR LISTING PAGE HEALTH

LOCAL BUSINESS DIRECTORY ON PG

30

15

DO YOU NEED AN ARCHITECTURAL TECHNOLOGIST? FOOD & DRINK

9

COCKTAIL FOR YOUR VALENTINE

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

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We have a bumper edition for you this month, stuffed full of great local businesses, events and stories as well as the exciting news that superstar Jamaican reggae musician, singer, DJ and actor Shaggy will be coming to Birmingham in March. Our new magazine is packed full of all things local as usual, and don’t forget if you’re a writer we’d love to help you promote your book on our local reads page, or if you’re an artist or poet we would love to hear from you too for our creative corner page. So sit down with a nice hot cuppa and enjoy your new edition. Find Greg the Gnome in our online magazine (go to swanpublishing. org) and you could be spending a day out at Birmingham Botanical Gardens. And remember, keep this copy in a safe place until we’re back at the beginning of April with our spring edition.

Happy Valentine’s and Mother’s Day everyone,

Ruby, Amy and Julie www.swanpublishing.org @TheMYMagazines @amyMYMag email info@swanpublishing.org

Our reader survey found...

51%

EDITOR’S WELCOME

Hello Neighbours!

amywatson@swanpublishing.org

0121 689 0432

Ruby Prosser

Designer & Editor

rubywatson@swanpublishing.org

0121 689 0432

54% 74%

Look in MY Magazine

Have used

Have been

need a service

MY Magazine

reading about it in MY Magazine

FIRST when they

Amy Watson

Managing Director

a business or service from

to an event after

Find Greg!

All you need to do to enter our prize draw for the perfect family day out at Birmingham Botanical Gardens is find Greg the pesky gnome who is hiding somewhere in our E-Mag. Enter through the website swanpublishing.org

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Julie Wilkins Advertising

juliewilkins@swanpublishing.org

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

07914 145 638


BEN HART COMES TO THE CORE Britain’s Got Talent 2019 finalist, West End star and multi award-winning magician Ben Hart is embarking on his debut solo tour. He will perform at The Core Theatre, Solihull on Saturday 9th May. Book early to avoid disapointment!

“UNBELIEVABLE! THAT WAS UNBELIEVABLE… REALLY… I’M SHOCKED” - Simon Cowell “THE LIVING EMBODIMENT OF MAGIC” - David Walliams

“DELIVERS HANDSOMELY ON ALL FRONTS…A CRESCENDO OF COUPS THAT LEAVE YOU SERIOUSLY STUMPED FOR A RATIONAL EXPLANATION.” ★★★★ Scotsman Expect Ben’s most mind-blowing and exciting magic in a show that shines a light on magic, life, the universe and the darkest corners of your imaginations. With the simplest of props, using the objects and minds of the audience, Ben Hart conjures an altogether new kind of magic. “MAKES SCEPTICS BECOME BELIEVERS” ★★★★★ Broadway Baby Funny, subversive, often dark and always amazing, Ben has established a reputation for always creating wonderfully alternative magic. At the age of 16 he was awarded the prestigious Young Magician of the Year award by the Magic Circle and is one of the youngest ever members of The Inner Magic Circle (with gold star) – the highest level of the famous Magic Circle. He was nominated for the Time Out and Soho Theatre Cabaret Award in 2013. The star of Killer Magic, Ben Hart’s Life Hacks Hoax (both BBC3), Now You See It (BBC1), The One Show, Len Goodman’s Partners in Rhyme and countless other TV appearances in the UK and abroad (his work has taken him to America, Australia, across Europe, The Middle east, Asia and Africa). When not performing magic, Ben invents writes and directs magic tricks and illusions for tv, theatre and film. His ideas have been performed by some of the top magicians working in the world and he has designed illusions for The Royal Shakespeare Company, The Old Vic, The Globe, The Hampstead Theatre and was the mind behind the acclaimed special effects in the west end production of The Exorcist. Ben has also performed as part of Impossible, one of the world’s biggest magic shows and performed in the West End for two consecutive years with the show. “EYE-BOGGLING… HIS SLEIGHT OF HAND IS EXTRAORDINARY” Time Out www.benhartmagic.com |

@ItsBenHart

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

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HOME & GARDEN

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AVON

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ARCHITECTURE

New Builds / Extensions / Conversions M: 07972 203 422 T: 01789 751 345 E: enquiries@avonarchitecture.co.uk W: avonarchitecture.co.uk

Local contractor with over 10 years experience in the trade, specialising in Extensions Alterations Refurbishments Plastering Landscaping

Please contact Jordan for a free no obligation quote Tel: 07889 082120 Email: arbbuildinglimited@gmail.com

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MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

@ARB Building Limited


FOOD & DRINK

? e n i t n e l a v y m Be BELLINI ROSSINI

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A romantic surprise for Valentineâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s day...

INGREDIENTS

METHOD

1/4 cup sugar 2 tbsp water 3 hulled strawberries 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice 1 bottle prosecco

Step 1 Combine sugar and water in a small saucepan, stirring until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat.

Step 2 Place sugar mixture, strawberries, and lemon juice in a blender; process until smooth. Pour pureed strawberry mixture through a sieve over a medium bowl, reserving liquid. Discard solids. Step 3 Place 3 tablespoons strawberry mixture into each of 8 Champagne flutes. Pour 1/3 cup prosecco into each flute.

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

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HOME & GARDEN

& TREEWORKS 01564 820 170 LOOKING FOR IT SUPPORT?

MOPHEADS DOMESTIC CLEANING & IRONING

• Expert and Friendly • Computer Support and Training • To Your Door

NetClicks provides high quality, IT support, computer repairs and training.

Contact Chris for friendly support and guidance without the jargon

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07505 094 686 net_clicks@outlook.com

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SPRING CLEANS AVAILABLE NOW Regular cleans. Removal cleans. Builders cleans. or just the in-laws are coming cleans.

Washing collected ironed & returned. Service washes. Dry cleaning. Simple alterations.

Curtain cleaning service. We will take your curtains down, get them dry cleaned and put them back up.

HOUSE CHECKING SERVICE AVAILABLE Tel:-0121 605 2322

LOCAL COMPANY - NOT A FRANCHISE www.mopheads.co.uk - mail@mopheads.biz

170 Yardley Rd. Acocks Green. Birmingham. B27 6LR

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020


LEISURE & RETAIL

What’s on FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

Monthly Markets & Fairs

Seasonal Events

Solihull Farmers’ Market Fresh locally grown produce Where: Solihull High Street When: First Friday every month Info: solihullfarmersmarket.org

Fine & Local Food Fayre Locally sourced food and produce from top quality suppliers. Where: Solihull High Street When: Third Saturday every month Info: solihull.gov.uk/events Bentley Heath Country Market A cross between a farmers’ market and a craft fair all under one roof. Where: Bentley Heath Hall When: Every Fri 9.30am 11.30am Info: facebook.com

Valentine’s Day at Hogarths Spend a romantic evening with your loved one at Hogarths. Be greeted to live entertainment in the bar area followed by a candlelit 4-course sharing menu. Where: Hogarth Hotel When: 14 Feb Info: hogarths.co.uk

For The Kids Nature Tots Join Warwickshire Wildlife Trust to explore the outdoors using the five senses, make smelly potions, and play fun games. Suitable for children aged 2-4. Where: The Parkridge Centre When: 21 Feb Info: solihull.gov.uk Den Building Join Warwickshire Wildlife Trust to find out how to survive outside this winter by making a den in the woods. Suitable for children age 5+ Where: The Parkridge Centre When: 19 Feb Info: solihull.gov.uk

Music

Wedding fair at Hogarths With a backdrop of 32 acres of beautiful woodlands & landscaped gardens, with two unique outside civil ceremony areas. Hogarths is a stunning location any time of year. Where: Hogarth Hotel When: 14 Feb Info: hogarths.co.uk

California Dreamin’ The Music of Mamas and Papas This show will instantly transport you back to one of the most iconic periods; the Sixties! Where: The Core Theatre When: 16 Feb Info: thecoretheatresolihill.co.uk

Classes

Vicki Gorman Weekly Art Classes for adults who want to learn or develop drawing and painting skills. All abilities and ages welcome. Where: The Core Courtyard Gallery When: Thursdays and Fridays Info: vicki_kilgour@yahoo.co.uk

Mother’s Day at Hogarths Hogarths provides a wonderful place to treat your Mother. Let your Mum relax and indulge with a menu specifically designed by thier Executive Head Chef. Where: Hogarth Hotel When: 14 Feb Info: hogarths.co.uk

Annie the musical Annie is a Broadway musical based upon the popular Harold Gray comic strip Little Orphan Annie. Where: The Core Theatre When: 10 - 14 Mar Info: thecoretheatresolihill.co.uk

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

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FASHION

Oxfam have their own website stocking some great designer brands that you can browse and purchase from. Visit oxfam.org.uk/shop to take a look.

IS FAST FASHION GOING OUT OF FASHION?

This issue Dawn Marriott shares her expert advice on the kind of shopping habits our planet desperately needs us to embrace... clothes. Their campaign encouraged us to try to buy more pre-loved items, reducing the need for constant newness. Buying second hand isn’t for everyone, but the good news is that it doesn’t have to involve rummaging around in second shops any more – there are plenty of places you can buy online in a bid to do your bit to save the planet, as well as bagging yourself a bargain in the process.

For some time now we have seen headlines around the fashion industry and how we need to slow down our consumption. Our planet is suffering, and the fashion industry is the world’s second biggest polluter. Fast fashion is one of the biggest culprits, with throwaway purchases been made by thousands of people daily. In the last 15 years, global clothing production has doubled to meet our ever-growing demand. It’s estimated that during the Christmas period we spent £3.5bn on new clothes in the UK with a staggering 8 million items only being worn once. In a bid to raise awareness and slow down our consumption Oxfam launched several campaigns last year, backed by the likes of Kate Moss and Ellie Goulding, encouraging us to try to make more sustainable choices when buying

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So if you fancy joining the revolution and trying to shop pre-loved items more, here are some great places to start: Oxfam have their own website stocking some great designer brands that you can browse and purchase. Visit www. oxfam.org.uk/shop to take a look. Depop is relatively new but already has over 11 million users. The App based marketplace is simple to use, whether you are buying or selling you will find everything from high street to designer listed at reasonable prices. Download the app to get started. Vinted is another online marketplace similar to Depop with millions of users selling high street brands. Vinted also offers buyers and sellers the opportunity to swap items saving cash and the planet. Download the Vinted App to start shopping. And not forgetting EBay where you can buy anything from a pair of thermals to a Ganni dress all at reasonable prices.

But if buying second hand isn’t for you – what about hiring a new dress? Dress agencies can be found in most cities and are a fantastic way of getting your hands on the latest catwalk styles at a fraction of the catwalk prices. If high-end fashion is more you, head over to My Wardrobe HQ the UK’s premier destination for luxury fashion rental. Offering a real solution to the fast fashion crisis, with designers such as Vivienne Westwood, Stella McCartney, Chanel and Sandro. You can rent an item at the touch of button or if you really want to you can buy it outright. All items are pre loved by someone else making this the perfect way to shop sustainably. The government says that we only have 12 years to make the changes needed in order to save our planet. Even making small changes to the way in which we shop can make a difference, slowing down our consumption of Fast Fashion can only have a positive impact, and buying more pre-loved will help to slow down demand too, so surely it’s time that Fast Fashion went out of fashion?

x Dawn

www.dawnmarriottstylist info@dawnmarriottstylist.com 07725 538 829 Dawnmarriott_stylist Dawn Marriott Stylist

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020


IS ANYTHING MORE ROMANTICISED THAN

LOVE?

Do you know what the biggest threat to relationships is in 2020? Unmet expectations. Love has been commoditised, packaged and sold as unrealistic picture-perfect movie moments. The modern enemy of love is people throwing away good loving relationships in search of something that isn’t real. Determined to find the cinematic love experience. The instagram filter of romance that air brushes out the struggles and conflict. And it’s no wonder. Because next to that, a happy relationship with balance, mutual respect and its fair share of arguments hardly seems as exotic. But for the sake of our sanity, we must remove the rose-tinted glasses through which we view the idea of love, and fall for the reality of love. There will be pressures that test your resolve… Society expects you to find your soul mate and be married by 30, and for women there are very real pressures connected to that, with our biological clocks ticking. It takes a huge amount of courage to deviate from that expectation, but if you can, you can reclaim your narrative. Harry Potter actress, Emma Watson recently was asked in an interview with Vogue why she is single (at the ripe old age of 29!), and she responded that she’s very happy being single, calling it being ‘self-partnered’, which is an act of reclaiming her narrative. After all, the foundation of a great relationship begins with an understanding of yourself, so whether that is the end goal or not it seems like a healthier stepping stone towards happiness than jumping directly from one relationship to another. I suppose the unifying problem is expectation. Try not to let other peoples expectations weigh too heavily on what your love life should look like, at whatever age you are. And, hard as it may be, fight against the warped perceptions of romance online, and avoid applying unrealistic expectations to love. But obviously, if they’re awful, leave them! Happy Valentines! - Written by Ruby Prosser

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

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HEALTH & WELLBEING

Quality care in your own home

Bluebird care (Solihull) is a privately owned local business operating only in the Solihull Metropolitan borough area, with offices in Shirley. Our main aim is to deliver high quality care to vulnerable people in their own homes, so that they can remain as independent as possible and remain in the familiar surroundings that they love. Our service is available 365 days per year and from a half hour to 24 hours per day. In addition all of our carers are trained in Dementia and Alzheimerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s. We provide personal care, for example, washing, bathing, toileting, dressing, getting into bed and getting up in the morning, administering medication. Bluebird care also provides home care such as help with ironing, cleaning, cooking, shopping etc. We can also provide companionship services for people, for instance reading to them, playing board games or taken to a show or a favourite venue. Our personalised service is provided by very highly trained carers who are recruited locally.All of our carers are CRB checked and multi referenced to give you peace of mind. Our aim is to give you the same care staff so that they can get to know you as an individual and really know what matters to you.

PMJ House, Highlands Road, Shirley, Solihull, West Midlands B90 4ND T: 0121 7117435 E: solihull@bluebirdcare.co.uk www.bluebirdcare.co.uk

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MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020


DO YOU NEED AN ARCHITECTURAL TECHNOLOGIST? What is the role of a Chartered Architectural Technologist? A Chartered Architectural Technologist, MCIAT, is a fully qualified professional who offers design services on a wide array of construction projects. We are able to design and manage projects from the very early stages of concept design, through to technical design and contract administration. How does it differ from the role of an architect? From the perspective of the client on a domestic project, the services provided by both a fully qualified architect and a Chartered Architectural Technologist are broadly very similar. The main difference between them is that a fully qualified architect will

employ a particular focus on the aesthetic of a project, whereas a Chartered Architectural Technologist Pictured above, Caroline Hutton has extensive training and experience of Martineau Gardens watches in the science and technology of Andy Street, CBE and Mayor of the construction methods materials. A broad-brush way of thinking about West Midlands cut the ribbon it would be that an Nicholson architect will with Charlotte ofconJo sider the design of a building from the Malone London. outside to in, and a technologist will consider it from thethe inside to out. With Please visit Martineau this being said, website many architects Gardens for morewill adopt a technical approach with their information: ideas, and many technologists will martineau-gardens.org.uk/ possess creativity and design ability.

visitor-information’

Why choose Avon Architecture to design your project? We are a forward-thinking design practice with a focus on detailed design and information. We implement

a proactive approach to the management and delivery of the projects we do, with a strong emphasis on providing good design, practicality and value for money for our clients. We can produce the architectural plans for your project, take the design through the stages of planning permission and building regulations and ultimately work closely with you and your builder to achieve your dream home, conversion or extension. We offer a free consultation, so why not get in touch with us today about your project?

A VON

ARCHI TE CTU RE M: 07972 203 422 T: 01789 751 345

New Builds / Extensions / Conversions

Now Selling

M: 07972 203 422 T: 01789 751 345 E: enquiries@avonarchitecture.co.uk W: avonarchitecture.co.uk

We are delighted to announce that we are now selling at Knowle. Why not come along and view this delightful development? Make the first move towards Churchill Retirement Living today – you’ll be surprised how easy it can be.

NEW RETIREMENT APARTMENTS FOR SALE IN KNOWLE Eleanor lodge, Station Road, Knowle Call today register your interest

0800 458 1852 churchillretirement.co.uk

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

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Aylesbury Park Lapworth

The Grade II listed Aylesbury House comprises of five unique, refurbished period homes featuring exposed 18thcentury brickwork, timber beams and original fireplaces.

This is where

we’ll write our own history

Local Private Tutors Helen Mills

Flute & Intensive Grade 5 Theory BMus; GBSM Hons; ABSM Over 30 years flute teaching experience. All abilities, ages and levels taught. Excellent results record. ALSO Aural Training Member of ISM Blenheim Road, Moseley Tel: 0121 449 2135

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Sarah Nation

Maths & English tuition Key Stages 1 & 2 (age 5-11) Highly experienced local tutor, qualified primary school teacher. DBS checked. Tel: 0121 446 6468 sarah.nation@btinternet.com

Hazel Buller BSc

Guitar Tutor All ages, abilities and levels taught. Lessons provided in your own home or Solihull. Special rates for JLR emloyees. DBS Certified. hazelbuller.co.uk Tel: 07847 557 765

Set within stunning gated parkland, Aylesbury Park provides privacy and security for the discerning buyer in the highly desirable community of Lapworth. Homes from £575,000 to £1,450,000

For a private viewing call 01564 454 611 or visit cameronhomes.co.uk

Laurence Dalton Learn More 4 A* B.A.P.G.C.E. English Tutoring

Specialising in GCSE language and literature Contact: www.englishgcsetutor. co.uk / 07525 206 388

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MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020


West Midlands Mayor Andy Street, Cllr Alison Rolf, Solihull’s cabinet member for stronger and safer communities, and Solihull BID chief executive Melanie Palm er.

Solihull is leading the way in dealing with homelessness, says West Midlands Mayor Andy Street.

Solihull is leading the way with homeless scheme SAYS WEST MIDLANDS MAYOR ANDY STREET West Midlands Mayor Andy Street says Solihull is leading the way in dealing with homelessness thanks to a pioneering scheme which is ensuring donations from kind locals make a real difference in the borough. Mr Street, who heads up the West Midlands Combined Authority, says the Change into Action scheme which was launched in Solihull last year is now helping improve the lives of the area’s homeless. “Rough sleeping across the West Midlands is completely unacceptable and shames us as a region,” he said. “Thankfully, compared to other areas, Solihull has fewer people who regularly sleep rough, however there are now more people who are homeless and at risk of sleeping rough. There are also a growing number of people across the borough who beg. “As someone who grew up in Solihull, I know how generous Silhillians are by nature, and the way local people have backed Change into Action is testament to that community spirit. It is a scheme that works at a hyper-local level, by ensuring money donated goes into

Solihull to support those at risk of rough sleeping. “The battle to end homelessness has been incredibly difficult, but Change into Action has been a real positive and we are aiming to roll it out across the rest of the West Midlands.” Change into Action is an alternative giving scheme which helps local specialist charities and street teams operating in the borough to support rough sleepers and those at risk of rough sleeping. Donations can be made online at changeintoaction.org.uk/solihull or by visiting one of the collection points which are currently at Sporting Barbers and Specsavers on Solihull High Street, William Hill on Station Road, Solihull, Touchwood Solihull and at Asda, Parkgate shopping centre, Shirley. Mr Street is being credited with bringing about a change in direction to how the region tackles homelessness. Alongside Change into Action, he also helped introduce another project – Housing First – to the UK after seeing its success in Scandinavia.

“The only way we are going to be able to ‘design out’ homelessness – the aim of the West Midlands Homelessness Task Force – is by facing up to our moral responsibility and working collaboratively,” Mr Street said. “Projects like Change into Action and Housing First have shown that we can break the cycle of people ending up on the streets and give rough sleepers the chance of a genuine new start in life. “I’m delighted that Solihull people are at the forefront of this very important change in direction.” Keep up to date at:

www.fb.com/andy4wm

Housing First provides homes, support and guidance to rough sleepers and has already helped more than 100 people off the streets.

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

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Is your dream home a flood risk? Amanda Holden, Residential Conveyancing Solicitor and Head of the residential conveyancing department at The Wilkes Partnership Solicitors has a few words of advice. “When you fall in love with your dream home it is sometimes difficult to see it without rose tinted glasses. Buying property is more complex than it has ever been before,” she said. According to a report from The Conveyancing Association in December 2019; ‘as the global climate undergoes rapid and unprecedented changes, the frequency and severity of flood events in the UK are due to increase.’ Amanda Holden continues: “We all remember the first two weeks of November 2019 when we saw bigger floods and new areas of flooding on our roads around Solihull. This increased flood risk has a knock on effect on the house buying process. “As part of the conveyancing process we carry out a drainage search which checks whether a property is connected to the mains foul water sewer or whether it has its own septic tank. It will also confirm whether the property

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is connected to the mains surface water system and the location of the nearest mains surface water drain to the property. If the drainage search doesn’t reveal where surface water goes then you may have a problem as it is essential to know where the surface water drains to from a flooding point of view. We also carry out an environmental search which contains information as to the flood risk of a particular property”. “You will want to know if the property is at risk of flooding and importantly whether you will be able to obtain suitable insurance under normal terms. If your property is in an area affected by flooding you will need to check whether there are any exclusions on the buildings insurance policy you have chosen. Any mortgage lender must be satisfied that those exclusions don’t prejudice their lending,” Amanda said. In addition if the property you have your heart set on has a paved drive you will need to find out whether it is permeable. Due to the increasing trend to fully pave front driveways, which reduces the ability for the ground to absorb excess surface water, regulations have been in force since 2008 requiring driveways to be built with permeable material.

The risk of flooding is just one of many aspects of the house buying process that Wilkes will consider for you. The firm offers an efficient, friendly service in the community where you can see somebody face to face who will handle your sale and purchase from beginning to end. The Wilkes Partnership have offices on the Stratford Road in Shirley with on-site parking as well as offices in central Birmingham. If you would like any advice on property conveyancing you can contact Amanda Holden at The Wilkes Partnership to discuss in person on 0121 733 8000 or via email on - aholden@wilkes.co.uk

The Wilkes Partnership LLP Stanton House, 54 Stratford Road Shirley, Solihull, B90 3LS

0121 733 8000 www.wilkes.co.uk

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020


WORD

PETROL AND DIESEL CAR BAN PLANNED TO BEAT CLIMATE CHANGE

STREET

The plan also includes the creation of a national park and that a new tree will be planted for each of the near three million people living in the region.

EVERY petrol and diesel car and vehicle will be banned from all roads across the West Midlands in 20 years time under a suggested new controversial £40bn climate plan.

ON THE

The #WM2041 document includes a series of recommendations to help the region meet the target of a zero-carbon economy by 2041 and has been published by the West Midlands Combined Authority in response to the ‘climate emergency’. Encouraging more active travel, cleaner transport, infrastructure changes to support electric vehicles and the transition to more eco-friendly homes, the plan is the first of its kind in the country, acting as a blueprint for the region as it seeks to move away from reliance on fossil fuels and toward a renewable future.

£85M FUNDING BOOST FOR SOLIHULL HOMEBUILDER EVENTS AND CONFERENCE CENTRE SAVES 60 JOBS An events and conference centre has saved in the region of 60 jobs which were threatened by the closure of a West Midlands security business. Solihull-based Securex provided security and stewarding staff to help manage the tens of thousands of visitors who attend more than 275 events every year at the NAEC, which is based at Stoneleigh Park, Kenilworth. Securex is now closing down and NAEC Stoneleigh has stepped in to create Grandstand Security and Stewarding, to save the jobs. Rob Patterson, head of venue operations at NAEC Stoneleigh, said: “We host more than 275 events a year at Stoneleigh and pride ourselves on providing a safe, secure and efficiently-run environment. “To do that, we need the expertise and experience of an extremely proficient and professional group of security staff, which Securex has always provided for us. “As soon as we heard the business was closing, we moved to ensure the high-quality service provided to all visitors and exhibitors at the NAEC would continue. See full article: insidermedia.com

A £85m equity and debt funding package has been agreed by a Solihull housebuilder to enable it to deliver 500 homes per annum over the coming three years, which would result in a turnover of £180m. Hayfield Homes has confirmed a £50m senior debt site acquisition facility, together with rolling development funding, has been secured from OakNorth Bank plc, arranged by London-based Reality Wealth Ltd. In addition, a prominent Dubai-based family office private investor – with more than 30 years’ property development experience in the UK and internationally – has led providing Hayfield with a new £35m rolling equity facility. The equity facility was jointly negotiated by Geneva-based MSM Investment Advisors SA and Reality Wealth Ltd. Hayfield managing director Mark Booth said: “Our first three years of trading have been very successful. “This new capital structure will enable Hayfield to quickly lose the newcomer badge and will allow us to realise our aspiration to become an established medium-sized housebuilder of note. “For a company of the size and age of Hayfield to secure a £85m funding facility is representative of the great strides the team have achieved. See full article: insidermedia.com

But while its recommendations are far-reaching and sometimes radical, environmental groups have warned that, without significant action on aviation emissions and HS2, the plan will have little impact. Using a set of guiding principles, the West Midlands Combined Authority has outlined actions to be taken over five, ten, fifteen and twenty year timeframes, ranging from incentives to adopt low emitting modes of transport to a transition to more eco-friendly homes. The board of the WMCA has also agreed that, to be successful, an estimated investment of 1-2 percent of regional GVA is required. Between 2020 and 2041, this would work out at around £40bn: Speaking after the release of the papers, leader of Solihull council and the portfolio holder for the environment, Cllr Ian Courts, encouraged people to have their say, with a six-week public engagement event set to take place if the papers are approved at next week’s WMCA Board meeting. However Friends of the Earth activist Chris Crean, while praising the WMCA for their actions in creating the plan, says that both Birmingham International Airport and HS2 must be dealt with if our region is to truly see a reduction in carbon emissions. “I think the way in which this is going to be tested is going to be in the actions, the way in which budgets are allocated,” he said. “And within that there are some significant infrastructure issues right in front of us at this very moment. We know that the Oakervee review is being deliberated, over the awful HS2 scheme. And a decision upon whether or not that scheme goes ahead could be taken very very shortly. See full article: herefordtimes.com

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

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LEGAL & FINANCIAL

Let’s Be Civil - Mixed-Sex Couples Now Have Right to Enter into Civil Partnerships

Under the terms of a civil partnership a couple is entitled to the same legal treatment in terms of tax, pensions, inheritance and next-of-kin arrangements as if they were married. There are an estimated 3.3 million unmarried couples currently living in England and Wales who could take advantage of the new arrangements and the government predicts that uptake could be as high as 84,000 in the first year, with numbers stabilising at around 30,000 a year by 2029. Civil partnerships for mixed-sex couples are now legal, meaning that mixed-sex couples now have the right to choose whether to marry or alternatively, enter into a civil partnership. Until recently, civil partnerships have been reserved for same-sex couples and they represented the only way for many people to formalise their relationship until the introduction of same-sex marriage in 2014.

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One Couple’s Story Which Led to Legal Change In October 2014, Rebecca Steinfield and Charles Keidan tried to form a civil partnership at their local town hall, only to be told that because they were not of the same sex, this could not be done. They were advised that civil partnerships were only reserved for couples of the same sex. Following this, Rebecca and Charles launched a legal challenge in the form of a judicial review, which allows individuals to challenge the law. Their case was eventually heard in the Supreme Court in May 2018. The couple’s position was that they had “deep rooted and genuine ideological objections to marriage”.

Their barrister said matrimony was “historically heteronormative and patriarchal” and the couple’s objections were “not frivolous”. Following deliberation from the judges in the Supreme Court, they gave the unanimous ruling that the government’s refusal to allow mixed-sex couples to enter into civil partnerships was incompatible with human rights law. How Has the Law Changed? Following the Supreme Court’s ruling, the government pledged to allow mixed-sex couples in England and Wales to enter into civil partnerships, and legislation was passed in 2019 allowing for a change in the law. Secondary legislation was required before those provisions could become law,

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020


LEGAL & FINANCIAL

WWW.VWV.CO.UK but following recent approval from the House of Lords, the Secretary of State was required to issue the regulations allowing for mixed-sex civil partnerships by 31 December 2019.

Some couples, like Rebecca and Charles, feel that the institution of marriage isn’t compatible with their beliefs and ideologies. As such, being unable to enter into a civil partnership was viewed as discriminatory.

The same reforms will soon be extended to Scotland and Northern Ireland too.

Concerns that mixed-sex civil partnerships would undermine the institution of marriage have diminished and many people now see them as offering a route for cohabitants to secure their rights.

What Is the Basis for This Legal Change? Traditionally, principles of marriage are rooted within religion and would involve a religious ceremony. Civil ceremonies have become more popular. However, there are strict rules as to what constitutes a legally-binding marriage which can be restrictive on those wishing to get married outside of a typically religious building.

How Can We Help? If you are unsure how this legal change may affect you or you are concerned to determine what your legal rights are currently, or you wish to enter into a civil partnership, please contact Nigel Mears on 0121 227 3731.

Need Legal Advice? We offer a personal service to meet your needs: • Buying or selling a house • Estate administration • Family, divorce & children

• Lasting powers of attorney • Personal injury • Wills & inheritance tax

Contact Rachael Armstrong at rarmstrong@vwv.co.uk or on 0121 227 3726.

vwv.co.uk

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

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HOME & GARDEN

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MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020


THIS ISSUE’S LOCAL READS Enjoy this issue’s recent release from a local author...

What they didn’t teach me on my PGCE Sarah Mullin, an award-winning Deputy Headteacher and Doctor of Education student from Solihull, has recently had her book ‘What They Didn’t Teach Me on My PGCE’ published. In its first week, the book was featured as a Number 1 Best Seller in the education category on Amazon and has received five star reviews from some leading educators across the country. What They didn’t Teach Me on My PGCE is a collection of narratives written by teachers for teachers. Sarah has captured the voices of over 200 educators who share their heartfelt advice, top tips, honest reflections, disastrous experiences and laugh-out-loud anecdotes about early career teaching.

Price: £16.65 To order your copy go to www.amazon.co.uk

‘My hard work, growing role within the school and the evidence of whole school improvement meant that I was promoted to the role of Deputy Head during my current maternity leave I have continued with my EdD, written a book, and have been featured as an ‘Inspirational Woman’ by We Are The City. I have also been shortlisted as a finalist in the categories of ‘Head teacher of the Year 2019’ and ‘Teacher of the Year 2019’ by the West Midlands Education Awards. I have also been shortlisted as a ‘Positive Role Model’ by the National Diversity Awards!’ - Sarah Mullin

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

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HOME & GARDEN

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MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020


HOME & GARDEN

GARDENING TIPS FROM THE EXPERTS at Birmingham Botanical Gardens As the daylight hours increase and the temperature starts to rise slowly, you can get on with making sure your garden is ready for spring – and you can also look ahead to what you plan to do later in the year. Doing a little bit, often, is the best way to make sure you keep on top of your horticultural chores, so if you have a spare 30 minutes or so, here are some tasks to do over February and March:

It might be early in the year, but there are hints that spring is well on its way – the snowdrops are already out and narcissi are also peeping from the ground, brightening up our gardens and parks with their delightful yellow tones. We’ve enjoyed being out in the garden, even in the rain, and it’s at this time of year when the legwork you did at the end of last autumn starts to pay off: your tools are already sharpened and cleaned, your scrubbed-up pots are ready to be filled, and the greenhouse is sparkling.

* * * * * *

In February:

Prune winter-flowering shrubs when they have finished flowering. Prune wisteria back to about two or three buds. Clip ornamental grasses back to a few centimetres from the ground. Remove the faded flowers from winter pansies. Get a head start on the weeds, by removing them from the borders. If the soil is not frozen or waterlogged, you can reposition deciduous shrubs or trees.

* * * *

In March:

Replenish the goodness in your soil by adding a general fertiliser, well-rotted manure or compost. Prune roses and give them a good feed. Deadhead hydrangeas. Remove the flowers from faded daffodils, but leave the foliage to die back naturally. Think about using nematodes if you want to keep slugs at bay. You might need to start mowing your lawn now – make sure the blades on your lawnmower are set higher than they are in the summer.

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

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PHOTO CREDIT JOHNATHAN MANNION

SHAGGY’S IN BRUM!

Shaggy is coming to Birmingham and he’s bringing the nostalgia of early 2000’s RnB with him, AKA Eve, Nelly, Salt N Peppa, Mya, Blu Cantrell, and Fat Man Scoop! 1. The Blast Off! Tour kicks off at the end of February next year – are you excited to be heading back on the road? Yeah! I’ve literally just got back off the road with UB40 in North America so this is a perfect time to be hitting the UK and Ireland! It’s a great line up also, and as soon as I looked at the line up I said, ‘yeah, I definitely wanna go!’ It’s a line up of great hits.

2. Nelly, Salt N Pepa, Blu Cantrell – are you excited to have some of the biggest names of the 90s & 00s joining you on the tour?

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It’s going to be good vibes! I’ve done a couple of shows with Nelly on several occasions back when he was just coming out so we did the circuit together. Recently, I think the last shows we did together were in Canada, a couple of dates there. I just think with the amount of amazing records these guys have got, we’ve got Salt N Pepa, Blu Cantrell. I’m sure there will be a lot of guests coming in and out, it’s just going to be a really, really good night!

3. If you had to pick one other artist from the line up, who do you think will be the most fun to hit the road with? I mean, any one of them! I think Mya

will be cool in the sense that she’s been doing a lot of dancehall and reggae as of lately, even from before she’s done records with Beenie Man and people like that… but they’re all great!

4. You’ve not long completed a tour with Sting! How did that come about? I’ve known Sting for years! We have a mutual friend in common which is Martin Kierszenbaum, he was my A&R at Interscope and also Sting’s A&R at Interscope, and then Martin started managing Sting and then managed me and he just thought that we would work well together. We went into the studio to do one song and then we

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020


found it a little weird because they forgot how many hits we have between us and it’s the journey and soundtrack of people’s lives – and that’s what it’s all about. The smiles on people’s faces, that’s all that matters really.

6. Rather impressively, you’ve had 4 UK number one singles. How do you find playing the UK compares to elsewhere? Do you feel an affinity with the UK? I used to go over to the UK for years, it’s almost as if people thought I lived there! We’ve had a few number ones and a lot of Pop records over there, which started in 1992 with Oh Carolina, which was the first dancehall record that actually went into the British chart at number one, and then we were on Top of the Pops four times and it was the first time Dancehall really did that as well. Then we debuted at number one with Boombastic, and it was the first time for Reggae and Dancehall again. At that point, I started to circuit and get to know everyone over there so England and the whole of the UK was a big part of that time for me, and I have a lot of friends in the UK that I’ve known over the years because I feel like I’ve lived there.

7. Your music career has spanned close to three decades, what do you find is your biggest motivation to keep making music and keep performing? thought that we had a lot in common on many levels that turned into a friendship, which then developed into an album. We just couldn’t get enough of each other and the way we make music, and the laughs and the fun, we just said, “We’re gonna take this show on the road.”

5. Your joint album 44/876 was a massive success and also won you a Grammy - did you expect to receive such an amazing response to the album? We didn’t know what to do with that thing because Sting & Shaggy on paper looks really weird! That’s kind of what attracted us to it anyway, the fact that no one was really expecting it and everybody would be sitting there thinking, “What the fuck is it?” But one thing was undeniable, which we knew would be, that once you came to a show, you would leave entertained, and if you look at most of the write up and reviews of the shows throughout the whole tour, people were saying that they came even though they didn’t think they would like it and they

I just do music because I’m really not good at anything else! Honestly, you don’t want to see me kick a ball. Trust me, it aint pretty! I’ve a knack for writing great melodies and obviously we did the Sting album, we won a Grammy, three years before that we did ‘Need Your Love’ which was a Top 5 single in America, which made me happy. I’m still writing songs that have relevancy within Dancehall, and I write for other people also. It’s just a hobby for me, music for me is just like air after a while, and it’s just kind of what I do! I don’t have any aspirations to be any mogul or have riches – I just want to play music and be happy, that’s it.

8. Throughout your career, you’ve always given back to your hometown community in Jamaica and charity has always been close to your heart – how important do you think it is to give back? For me, coming from humble beginnings to now being at this level - I played for the Queen’s birthday the other day - when you’re sitting around and dining with kings

MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020

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and queens, from a little kid that came from Jamaica, it’s humbling. After a while, you realise just how very fortunate you are and I don’t think that was given to me just so I could walk around drinking, partying, and banging chicks, it had to be something greater. I have to use this platform I have to bring people together to do something amazing. Starting up a hospital for children was what I chose to go behind because it was the only one in the English-speaking Caribbean and I realised for a hospital like that, it would mostly be children and they would be serving in a neighbourhood of about 400-500 people a day and those are huge numbers for such a small hospital. I had the ability to get sponsorship and pull people together and create these massive concerts, we made a lot of money for them. We were able to build their cardiac wing, and were very instrumental in the building of the CAT lab, and all the equipment. I was in Jamaica just two days ago where we turned over $100,000,000 to Jamaica. We continue doing stuff like that. I’m also a brand ambassador for Food For The Poor, which is the 5th largest charity in the US. I do a lot of work with Home Base, which is a charity for the military to combat invisible wounds. It’s good to be in that position where you can put your celebrity towards something like that. I also do work with Chain Of Hope who do cardiac operations for little babies in third world countries. After a while, especially where I’m at right now where I’ve done all the partying, it’s time to do something.

9. You have a military background yourself, is that something that has always stuck with you, especially when it comes to charity? I was in the first Gulf War so I know all about that. I don’t think you’re going to go through any war without having some sort of trauma, it just comes with it. I’m in a position where I can do a lot of work with the military, even as far as doing concerts for them and doing shows in Bosnia and Germany.

10. You’ve had number one albums, number one singles, toured the world… What would you say is your career highlight to date? There’s a lot! I think meeting James Brown and him being such a really big Shaggy fan was such an out-of-body experience. Also, the whole Sting project has certainly been a highlight of my life. Michael Jackson, and Michael just being such a fan and playing at the 30th Anniversary at Madison Square Garden.

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Going diamond is also a massive highlight. It’s been a very amazing ride; it’s been pretty good and pretty colourful.

11. Last but not least, what else is in the works for you? Well, after the tour with UB40 in North America, I went straight off and did Disney’s ‘The Little Mermaid’ LIVE for ABC, and now Sting & I have just shot the holiday special for Thanksgiving and Christmas, where we’ll be doing all Reggae and Dancehall for the opening… we’re doing Christmas Carols and Reggae! Sting & I might get back in the studio, as there’s a project we’re discussing, so we’ll see how that works… It’s going to be something off the wall, it seems so far fetched, people might not understand it but that’s how we like it! When you’ve been doing things so long, you just look for things that excite you. So, a couple of projects here and there and we’ll just see how it goes!

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MY KNOWLE & DORRIDGE, FEBRUARY / MARCH 2020


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Local Business Directory Architect

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Arts Centre

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Building & Construction ARB Building Ltd

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Care Home

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Carers / Home Help

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February 2020 - My Knowle & Dorridge  

February 2020 - My Knowle & Dorridge