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Herald
the Sandwell
Sandwell
Sandwell
@sandwellcouncil
www.sandwell.gov.uk
WINTER 2015
Merry
Christmas!
Whatnti’sal On
Herald
Your esse
s
guide to what’ll
on in Sandwe
the Sandwell
Christmas & New
Year info: Page 2
Christmas bin
collections: Page 3
News from your
town: Pages 14-19
Your events guide
What’s On: Page 23
2
The Sandwell Herald
CHRISTMAS IS COMING
Preparing for cold weather
We’re all set for the winter here in Sandwell.
Our Snow Champions are at the ready with salt and shovels to help keep Sandwell
moving if it snows. Snow Champions are ordinary people willing to help out by
clearing paths and pavements.
This year, we’re giving out 33 tonnes of salt to our residents.
We opened up applications for new Snow Champions before The Herald went to
print. To check if we have any salt and shovels left for new Snow Champions, and to
find out more about the campaign, visit www.sandwell.gov.uk/snowchampions
If you’re already a Snow Champion, then we’ll be delivering two
3kg tubs of salt to you before Christmas.
Our gritters are also on 24-hour call,
ready to travel around Sandwell gritting
our roads. Do give them a wave if you
see them!
You can find out more about gritting at
www.sandwell.gov.uk/gritting
Most council offices will close over Christmas.
This helps save many thousands of pounds at what is
traditionally a quiet time of year.
Offices will be closed on Wednesday 23 December
and will not re-open until Wednesday 30 December.
They will also be shut on New Year’s Day.
Only essential and emergency services will be
running on these days.
For full details, and how to contact us in an
emergency, go to www.sandwell.gov.uk/christmas
Money saving tips
Christmas is an expensive time, so keep up-to-date
with our top tips to make your money stretch further at
www.sandwell.gov.uk/moneysaving
There’s advice on energy savings, savvy shopping,
cooking on a budget and managing your money.
For free advice on keeping your energy costs down, call
Sandwell Consortium on 0121 533 2668.
Santa Dash at Valley
Red-suited runners have signed
Get into the Christmas spirit by
up to walk, jog or run 2km around
cheering on walkers, joggers
the country park in this mass
and runners at Sandwell’s firstparticipation event.
ever Santa Dash on Saturday 5
December.
Mytime Active has organised
Everyone is welcome to come
the dash event, supported by
along to the fun event, which
Sandwell Leisure Trust and
starts at 10am at Sandwell Valley Sandwell Council.
showground.
www.mytimeactive.co.uk/santa-dash-sandwell
Enjoy a traditional Victorian Yuletide at Sandwell Park Farm
.
Featuring crafts, carols and brass and jazz bands,
Sandwell Valley’s
annual Christmas event runs from 10am to 6pm
on Saturday 12
and Sunday 13 December.
Children’s activities include Punch and Judy, pony
cart rides, face
painting, street performers and magicians.
It’ll be a fantastic Christmas shopping experienc
e too – with craft
stalls, gifts, real Christmas trees and local and fresh
produce in our
farm shop.
And there’s festive fare, including a hog roast and
traditional real
ales, to tempt your taste buds.
Admission is £3.25 for adults; £2.75 for children/o
ver 60s; £13
family ticket (2 adults and 3 children). Call 0121
553 0220 to book
a craft stall or for more details.
Santa’s here too!
Santas prepare to ‘dash’ at Sandwell Valley
And…Santa is in his grotto at Sandwell Park Farm
every weekend
(10am to 5pm) until Christmas. Visits to Santa are
£7 per child
(includes a gift). Normal admission prices to the
farm also apply.
Or book a mid-week group visit to see Santa. Call
0121 553 0220.
Free council car parks for Christmas shoppers
Shoppers can park for free in Sandwell Council car parks on the two weekends before Christmas.
There will be no charge in our car parks on 12 and 19 December. Sunday parking is already free.
For a list of council car parks, go to www.sandwell.gov.uk/parking
The Sandwell Herald
3
New leisure centre for Wednesbury
We’re honouring a Wednesbury victim of this
summer’s terror attack in Tunisia by naming a
sports hall in his home town after him.
The sports hall to bear his name is part of the
council’s new £8.1 million leisure centre complex
in Wednesbury.
“Joel spent a lot of time volunteering within the
community, encouraging and teaching young
people all types of sports.”
Joel Richards, aged 19, died while holidaying in
the coastal city of Sousse along with grandfather,
Charles Patrick Evans, 78, and uncle Adrian Evans,
49, who was manager of the council’s gas service.
Joel’s brother Owen survived the attack.
Joel, a former pupil at the town’s Stuart Bathurst
and Wood Green schools, was a keen sportsman
and promising football referee.
The naming of the hall will be part of an official
opening ceremony for the
leisure centre expected in
December.
Joel's mother Suzy said: "Mom, Owen and I feel
very honoured and proud.
Watch your Christmas
‘waste-line’!
Changes to your
Christmas bin collection
A big thank you to everyone who’s been
recycling this year.
Your usual collection date
Christmas collection date
Please keep this up over the holidays and recycle as much as possible.
Wednesday 23 December
No change
We all create lots of extra waste over the festive period. Did you know the
amount of wrapping paper thrown away at Christmas in the UK alone
would stretch to the moon?
Thursday 24 December
No change
Friday 25 December
Monday 28 December
And don’t forget those Christmas
and New Year parties which
mean more glass bottles, cans
and leftover food.
Monday 28 December
Tuesday 29 December
Tuesday 29 December
Wednesday 30 December
Wednesday 30 December
Thursday 31 December
Thursday 31 December
Saturday 2 January
Friday 1 January
Sunday 3 January
These are easy to recycle through
your kerbside collections in the
blue-lid recycling and brown food
waste bins.
And you can also recycle your
real Christmas tree. We’ll be
collecting trees with garden
waste collections in January.
Please either cut it up and put
it in your garden waste bin,
or place alongside the bin on
your collection day.
www.sandwell.gov.uk/recycling
www.sandwell.gov.uk/binday
There will be no garden waste collections between
Monday 21 December and Friday 1 January
If you would like FREE text updates to your
mobile about the bin service, please text
your postcode only to 07860 019 200
All collections will return to normal from
Monday 4 January 2016
4
The Sandwell Herald
The Sandwell Herald
5
Have a healthy winter... and a healthy new year!
Get your flu vaccine
Flu is a viral infection that causes
headache, fever, coughing and
sneezing. It generally lasts about a
week and is unpleasant.
But for some people it can be
dangerous and cause serious
complications. People most at risk
are:
• older people;
• the very young;
• pregnant women;
• those with underlying disease, particularly chronic respiratory or cardiac disease; and
• those with weakened immune systems.
If you’re at risk, ask your doctor or
local pharmacist for the vaccine.
Children in Year 1 and 2 can get
vaccinated at school.
Top tips
Making any new year health resolutions?
Here are some ways we can help you.
• Wear warm clothes and slippers.
Free health checks
Here are some benefits of stopping.
If you’re aged 40-74, you may be
eligible for a free NHS Health Check.
It’s like an MOT for your body.
• You will save money.
A trained healthcare professional will
measure your height, weight, waist,
cholesterol and blood sugar and
discuss your diet, lifestyle and family
health history.
• Your breathing and general fitness will improve.
Keep warm
• Heat your living room to 21°C (70°F) and your bedroom and rest of the house to 18°C (65°F).
• Fit draught proofing, draw curtains and make sure radiators are not obstructed.
Eat, drink and keep moving
This will help keep your energy
levels up and your body warm.
Keep spare medication
If you take medication, have some
spare so you’re not caught out in
the cold.
Check on older people
Look out for them, especially if
they live alone or have a serious
illness.
It’s a really good way to get advice
on reducing your risk of dementia,
diabetes, heart disease and strokes.
Quit smoking
Smoking is the biggest cause of
preventable deaths in England,
accounting for more than 80,000 each
year. One in two smokers will die from
a smoking-related disease.
• You will enjoy the taste of food more.
• The appearance of your skin and teeth will improve.
Our Stop Smoking Service gives
tailored advice and support.
Watch what you drink
If you’re worried about your own or
another person's alcohol drinking,
we’re here to support you.
Get fitter and trimmer
Check out our physical activity and
weight management programmes
below.
For support and advice, register online at
www.sandwell.gov.uk/lifestylechoices
or call 0800 011 46 56 or text GETHEALTHY to 64546
*Calls FREE from landlines. Charges may apply for calls and SMS texts from your mobile phone.
Do you have ideas to get your community active?
And do you need help with funding to make your ideas a reality?
Six new community activity network development officers (CANDOs) – one
based in each town – want to make people’s lives better by giving them the
chance to take part in, and enjoy, more physical activity.
For more information
about the funding opportunities on offer
please contact your town-based CANDO.
Jo Dodd
Wednesbury
Katie Deeley
Tipton
Eilish O’Callaghan
West Bromwich
Ricky Byrnes
Smethwick
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
Megan Smith
Oldbury
Matt Hill
Rowley Regis
Want to lose weight this new year?
Contact our weight loss services by calling Sandwell Healthy Weight
Network on 0800 011 46 56 or text GETHEALTHY to 64546.
We also have a new weight management development officer
Sam Palmer, pictured right, waiting to hear your views and ideas.
You can also find us on Facebook and Twitter:
Sandwell Healthy Weight Network
@SandwellWeightN
6
The Sandwell Herald
Coming soon – your
online MySandwell
account
Do you do your supermarket
shop online? Or do you use
Amazon, eBay or online
banking?
More and more of us are using
the internet to do business, and
that’s only going to increase in
the future.
That’s why we’re giving residents
their own MySandwell account.
You’ll be able to use your online
account to report problems, ask
questions, book services, pay bills
and follow the progress of how
we’re dealing with any enquiries.
So, if you report a pothole or
missed bin collection, the council
will be able to inform you through
your account when we’ve fixed
the hole or collected your bin.
You’ll be able to go to one place
to view your council tax bill and
payments, benefits and rent – as
well as any outstanding reports or
complaints you’ve made.
We’re not abandoning our phone
lines or offices, but with so many
people preferring to contact us
via the web, we want to make it
even faster and easier.
Dealing with more customer
enquiries online will also be
cheaper for the council in the
long-term – and therefore for you
too as Council Tax payers.
We’ll be rolling out the new
MySandwell account in 2016.
Look out for information at
www.sandwell.gov.uk/mysandwell
Interactive
road
safety
A new computer game
is helping children learn
about road safety.
The interactive game helps pupils learn
about the dangers they need to look out for
when they are out and about. The game is
available for children to use both in school
and at home.
Children learn as they go through the game
and encounter possible hazards. If players
make the right choice, they progress through
the levels. If they choose the wrong option,
they can learn why this is wrong and what to
do in future.
The game was developed by young people
from LearnPlay Foundation, an organisation
specialising in using games and films to
educate young people.
The feedback we’ve had so far has
been really positive and children have
been able to remember what they’ve
learned and put it into practice.
Facing the Future
In the last edition of the
Sandwell Herald, we told
you how we're radically
changing the way we
work through our Facing
the Future programme.
Put simply, the council needs money to provide the
services you need. But we now get less money from
government – in fact £132 million less this year than five
years ago, which is £400 less for each man, woman and
child in Sandwell.
Facing the Future has already saved the council £22
million, but we need to carry on making savings without
hitting the things you need from us.
Sign up for
email updates
So we've come up with a package of projects to change
the way we work and save money across the whole
council.
We've created a video explaining what Facing the Future
is all about which you can watch on our website at:
www.sandwell.gov.uk/facingthefuture
Thanks to everyone who has signed up to our new email updates service. More than
4,000 of you now get news, information and details of events from the council straight
to your inbox.
Not signed up yet? Just go to www.sandwell.gov.uk/emailupdates and register for free
updates on everything from roadworks and bin collections to jobs and housing.
You’ll find the updates particularly useful this winter, as we’ll be using
them to let you know about snow and school closures.
Other topics you can subscribe to include crime, fostering and
adoption, museums, libraries, health, leisure and business news.
Your email address will be kept confidential and we won’t bombard
you with updates – we’ll just send you important or helpful
information and news.
Sign up at www.sandwell.gov.uk/emailupdates
The Sandwell Herald
Tune in to
Sandwell
In the new year, you’ll be able to tune into
council meetings from the comfort of your own
home.
We will webcast our full council and cabinet
meetings LIVE from Sandwell Council House.
You will be able to watch by logging on to
www.sandwell.gov.uk/webcast before or
during meetings.
And if you’re not able to watch the broadcast
live, you’ll be able to catch up when it suits you
by using our on-demand service.
While watching the webcast, you’ll also be able
to see the meeting agenda on your computer
screen.
7
New pet memorial garden
Sandwell Valley Crematorium in West Bromwich
now has a new pet memorial garden.
We know how difficult it can be
when you lose a beloved pet,
so we now have a place where
you can choose a burial plot,
memorial or a peaceful place to
scatter ashes.
The Leader of Sandwell Council,
Councillor Darren Cooper,
opened the gardens with the
Mayor, Councillor Barbara Price.
Councillor Cooper said:
"We created this pet
memorial garden in
response to requests
from local residents.
a pet cemetery, fulfilling a need
that is not met at present.
"Sadly, I lost one of my dogs last
year and found it was difficult to
find anywhere like this locally.
"This cemetery will be a great
facility for grieving pet owners to
have on their doorstep."
"Pets are dear to people's hearts
and part of the family so these
facilities will ensure they get a
fitting send-off and memorial."
To find out more go to
www.sandwell.gov.uk/petmemorial
Rory Lydon, from Scott Veterinary
or call 0121 569 6700.
Clinic at Great Barr, said: "As one
of the local vets I must praise
Sandwell Council for establishing
The new service is to make sure our democratic
process is as open as possible for Sandwell’s
residents.
PUZZLES
of Sainsbury’s
vouchers
Send your answers along with your name and a contact number to
The Editor, Sandwell Herald, Communications Unit, Sandwell Council House,
Oldbury, B69 3DE or you can email via [email protected]
by 31 JANUARY 2016.
First correct entry for each puzzle out of the hat wins the prize. The editor’s decision is final
and no correspondence will be entered into.
1
2
3
Lucky voucher winners from puzzles in the last Herald are:
9
WORDSEARCH
From left to right, what is the top row of numbers?
Which word is NOT in the wordsearch?
B F
Q J
R U
L O
N I
V X
E M
E P
R Z
F C
V S
O Y
L S
S E
C G
H T
O G
A S
Y N
G T
G
T
R
T
Y
B
Q
I
L
H
4
O
E
W
X
E
I
K
W
K
G
D L I
F A S
I Q O
R L P
T A C
R B D
V I S
Y T N
B U O
I E W
5
6
7
8
Crossword: Margaret Wiatrowicz, Oldbury
Wordsearch: Mrs Gadd, Rowley Regis
Sudoku: Mrs L Gudger, Tividale
SUDOKU
Sudoku © Kevin Stone
CROSSWORD
What word is spelt from the Golden Boxes?
10
12
11
13
U
N
U
R
S
E
R
Y
G
D
ROAD SAFETY NURSERY
FOSTERING SNOW DOGS FREE
PARKING LIGHTS LOSE WEIGHT
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
ACROSS
1. ------ car (6)
4. Prunella ------ (6)
9. Spectre (anagram) (7)
10. More rude (5)
11. Opposite of hit (4)
12. A material (7)
14. Kind of athlete (6)
16. Rhymes with rates (6)
19. Historical accounts (7)
21. Deer (anagram) (4)
23. Eskimo’s house (5)
24. Well ordered (7)
25. Truthful (6)
26. Not rare (6)
DOWN
1. Great ---- (4)
2. Particular task (7)
3. Even money (5)
5. Not careless (7)
6. Big spoon for serving soup (5)
7. -------- Sea (8)
8. Say (5)
13. West -------- Albion (8)
15. They run newspapers (7)
17. Maths proposition (7)
18. ----- Villa (5)
20. Fruit (5)
21. You listen to this (5)
22. Religious song (4)
Name.. ...............................................................
Name.. ...............................................................
Name.. ...............................................................
Phone.. ..............................................................
Phone.. ..............................................................
Phone.. ..............................................................
8
The Sandwell Herald
Help us spread the word
We know that becoming a foster carer is a big
decision and unfortunately not everyone is able to fit
in the responsibilities with their work-life balance.
But even if you’re not able to become a foster
carer yourself, there are still lots of ways you can
support us.
It’s good to talk!
Give us the thumbs up!
Show us off!
Just talking about fostering can help. By
spreading the word you could prompt someone
to decide to become a foster carer.
If you’re on Facebook, make sure you ‘like’ our
new fostering page.
Just search ‘Sandwell Fostering’ on Facebook
and you’ll find us.
Show your support for our fostering service by
taking one of our fostering & adoption bags on
your shopping run.
You can also put one of our eye-catching
stickers in your car.
Both are available from the One Stop Shop at
Sandwell Council House in Oldbury. Or call
us on 0800 358 0899 to
request your
promotional
bag and car
sticker.
The Sandwell Herald
More primary school
places on offer
We’ve created more than 4,400 new
primary school places since 2010 across
30 schools.
210
We’ve concentrated on improving
buildings at schools rated as either
‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted.
Schools have had extensions
built, giving them state-of-the-art
classrooms and facilities.
This means we can now offer
88% of parents their first choice
of primary school.
175
PLACES
PLACES
30
PLACES
210
210
PLACES
PLACES
210
PLACES
105
210
PLACES
PLACES
FREE childcare places
20E1E6K
W
11234567895012
Januar
y
All three and four-year-olds are entitled to 15 hours of free
childcare each week, 38 weeks a year.
There’s also free childcare for two-year-olds if you receive
benefits or your child has special educational needs (SEN).
Apply for
primary school
places before...
Apply online at www.sandwell.gov.uk/earlyyears
www.sandwell.gov.uk/schooladmissions
FRIDAY
9
10
The Sandwell Herald
Safety news in brief...
Check out results for your town from our annual autumn Safer 6 campaign,
which sees organisations targeting their efforts and providing extra
reassurance as the nights draw in. Visit www.sandwell.gov.uk/safer6
Sniffer dogs are helping Trading Standards find
illegal (and potentially dangerous) cigarettes
and counterfeit tobacco. They sniffed out huge
quantities in recent raids on shops in West
Bromwich, Tipton and Smethwick.
Call the confidential fakes hotline
0300 303 2636.
Our wardens have issued more than 130 dog
mess fines since our hard-hitting campaign began
last year. We've also prosecuted nine people who
refused to accept or pay the fine.
Report dog mess, and who's not cleaning up, at
www.sandwell.gov.uk/dogmess
or call 0121 569 6625.
Neighbourhoods officers litter-picking at Tame Bridge
A big thank you to our 1,905 community
volunteers who helped us collect more than five
tonnes of fly-tipped waste AND 1,429 bags of litter
during 114 events in this year's Big Spring Clean
campaign.
More than 100 people have become drug-free
over the past year, with help from our drug
treatment services. For support, call Sandwell drug
and alcohol services (18 and over) 0121 553 1333
or DECCA (under-18s) 0121 569 2201.
Yoyo the sniffer dog
Let us know how we're responding to
top priorities or 'ward pledges' in your
neighbourhood and influence next year's
pledges too.
Fill in an online survey by 18 December at
www.sandwell.gov.uk/neighbourhoodsurveys
Domestic
abuse
–
need
help?
Are you suffering domestic abuse or worried
about someone who is?
Domestic abuse isn’t just physical
violence – if you are scared
and threatened by your
partner or someone you
live with, please don’t
suffer in silence.
In an emergency, always call
police on 999. Otherwise call
their 101 non-emergency number.
Every year, Sandwell Women's
Aid (SWA) supports thousands of
women, children and men affected
by domestic abuse – call 0121 552
6448.
For housing advice – whether it's
keeping safe or looking for a new
home or refuge – call us on
0121 569 6000 (choose option 3).
For more advice and info, go to:
www.sandwell.gov.uk/domesticabuse
We're all working together to tackle
domestic abuse – here are
a few things we've done
this past year:
• recruited new domestic
abuse workers for each of
the six towns;
• educated 3,600 young people
in schools on relationships;
• trained GP practices on how to spot
the signs and respond;
• signed up to a West Midlandswide set of standards for domestic
violence and abuse services – the
first of its kind nationwide; and
• launched a new programme to
target perpetrators – to refer yourself
or someone into the programme, call
07471 355280 or email
[email protected]
Christmas refuge appeal
This year 50 women and up to 60 children who have escaped domestic
abuse and international human trafficking will spend Christmas in Sandwell
Women’s Aid’s refuges.
You can help make their Christmas special by donating a present.
Contact Kat Bailey on 0121 553 0090 or [email protected]
Healthwatch Sandwell
here to help you
Healthwatch Sandwell is the borough’s ‘consumer
voice’ for health and social care services.
It works with residents, community
Compare doctors
organisations and groups to hear any issues,
Healthwatch Sandwell has introduced
concerns or experiences from those using
a web service called CompareDrs.com
health and social care services in Sandwell.
giving local people the chance to find
Healthwatch works with organisations
out what services are available at their
that provide these vital services to make
GP surgery and other local surgeries.
sure that the views of local people are
To find out more, visit
taken into account.
It also provides information to direct
people to the right place, whether it is for
help and guidance or for complaints.
www.comparedrs.com
The aim is to make sure local
providers consult properly to make
services better.
To contact Healthwatch
Sandwell, call 0121 569 7210 or
email
[email protected]
www.healthwatchsandwell.co.uk
Food allergies?
When you ordered your last takeaway,
did the restaurant ask: “Do you have any
food allergies?”
New laws mean caterers have to tell customers about
allergens in food and drinks they supply.
It’s vital they know the law and how to protect
customers and themselves.
To raise awareness, our trading standards officers
have visited more than 400 cafes, takeaways
and other food premises and devised a special
information pack for them.
A food allergy is when the body’s immune system
reacts unusually to specific foods. Reactions are
often mild but can be very serious, sometimes life
threatening.
The most common food allergies are to celery,
cereals containing gluten, crustaceans, eggs, fish,
lupin (used in flour), milk, molluscs, mustard, nuts,
peanuts, sesame seeds, soya and sulphur dioxide
(sometimes known as sulphites).
Visit www.food.gov.uk/allergy
for more info.
The Sandwell Herald
11
Combining for a
better West Midlands
We have agreed to team up with other councils in the West
Midland to help secure a better future for the region.
Sandwell councillors unanimously voted in favour of joining the
West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) at a meeting in
October.
By setting up a Combined Authority, councils can work together
to create a stronger local economy and secure decision-making
powers from the Government.
At the time of going to press, the WMCA was negotiating with the
Government over a potential devolution deal.
For the latest news visit
www.westmidlandscombinedauthority.org.uk
Support for new tenants
We’ve set up a team to provide advice and support to new
council tenants.
Our three prevention support officers cover two towns each:
Ranjit Gandham Smethwick and West Bromwich
Layla Law Tipton and Wednesbury
Tom Sheppard Oldbury and Rowley Regis.
They can help with housing benefit claims and budgeting
advice and refer tenants to other support agencies.
Based at Court House, High Street, West Bromwich, they're
available Monday to Friday, 9am-5.30pm. Call 0121 569 5074
or 5075 for advice or to book an appointment.
12
The Sandwell Herald
Investing in homes and communities
Improvements include new kitchens, bathrooms
and central heating systems plus electrical
rewiring as well as new roofs and windows.
We’re working with four partners: Keepmoat,
Lovell, VINCI Facilities and Wates Living Space.
1,450
ROOFS
REPAIRED/
REPLACED
1,760
BATHROOMS
So far we’ve
made a
staggering...
1,080
HEATING SYSTEMS
IMPROVED
1,680
KITCHENS
IMPROVED
IMPROVED
£30
RTH OF
WO
I
This is funded by income from tenants’ rents,
which we are reinvesting back into people’s
homes.
We started our internal improvements
programme last year, which is improving
6,000 homes.
ERNAL IMP
T
N
E
VEM NTS
RO
We’re investing more than £70 million in our council homes – £50 million on internal
improvements and a further £20 million on high-rise blocks and new windows.
MILLION
1,200
HOMES
REWIRED
3,500
HOMES
COMPLETED
When are we improving your home?
Where next?
Estates we are working in:
* Temple Way and Kenelm, Oldbury
* Springfield and Haden Hill, Rowley Regis
* Bearwood, Smethwick
* Tipton Green and Shrubbery, Tipton
* Great Barr, West Bromwich
* Kenrick Park, Charlemont and
Yew Tree, West Bromwich
* Coneygre, Tipton
For more information visit www.sandwell.gov.uk/housing and click on 'when are we improving your home?'
High-rise improvements
A £2.5 million facelift has started on West
Bromwich tower block Kynaston House.
It’s getting new windows, balcony doors and lifts,
and the outside of the building will be insulated with
cladding to reduce heat loss.
Councillor Paul Moore, Sandwell Council’s cabinet
member for regeneration and economic investment,
said: “People living in and around Kynaston House will
know just how much the block needs improving.
“I look forward to the block being transformed.”
Two new flats will be created on the ground floor with
entrances remodelled and communal areas decorated
plus extra car parking spaces and landscaping.
Keepmoat is carrying out the upgrade, taking on three
apprentices and creating another three roles for local
people.
The 11-storey block, with 41 flats, is the 34th to benefit
from the council’s high-rise improvement programme
since 2005.
The refurbishment should be completed in late 2016
giving the 1960s-built flats in Rydding Lane an extra
30-year lifespan.
Councillor Paul Moore, right, with Jon Merricks,
operations manager, Keepmoat
All new at Yew Tree
Our construction partner Lovell has transformed a Sandwell community centre to
the delight of its hundreds of users.
The company, which is improving homes on Yew Tree
estate, offered its expertise and materials to the Yew
Tree & Tame Bridge Community Centre in Redwood
Road.
Back row, Ann Young, left, receiving the hamper from Ann Poynton
and Fred Jones, vice chair of the centre; with The Little Sew and Sews
centre and its attached bungalow, which can be hired
out. Mirrors have also been installed in the dance
studio.
“We grabbed the opportunity with both hands,” said
Ann Poynton, community support worker. “It’s very rare
for our centre to be offered something like this.”
“It’s made such a difference, it’s unreal,” adds Ann. “It
was in a bad way before but now, not only has the
centre been brought up-to-date, we can let the space
and bring in money to make further improvements.”
Lovell and its supply chain planned, provided and
installed a new kitchen and toilet – along with electrical
work and new windows – in both the community
Members of The Little Sew and Sews group based at
the centre, handed over a ‘thank you’ hamper to Ann
Young, Lovell site manager.
The Sandwell Herald
13
Facelift for nursery
We had a great response to the first round of our Hands-on help
scheme advertised in the last edition of the Sandwell Herald.
We invited voluntary, community and not-for-profit
organisations to apply for free labour and materials to improve
their community buildings. More than 20 groups applied and
we’ll be contacting the successful organisations in the new year.
The scheme is supported by our four construction partners,
who are working with the council to give community
groups a helping hand.
Organisations can now apply for the second round.
Go to www.sandwell.gov.uk/sandwelllegacy
for details of how to apply.
The closing date is
Friday 11 March 2016.
Headteacher Heidi Faulkner and nursery children say
a big thank you to Brian Price and VINCI Facilities
Pupils and teachers at Ocker Hill Infant and Nursery School,
Tipton, are reaping the benefits of a long-standing relationship
with VINCI Facilities.
With offices close to the Gospel Oak Road-based school, the VINCI team
has carried out a range of improvement works at the school in recent years.
Heidi Faulkner, headteacher, said:
“
The whole school community would like to offer their sincere thanks
to the company which has supported our school in so many ways. This
includes full decoration of our nursery, painting of all corridors in the
school and fitting new units and sinks in our staff room and staff toilets.
External improvements include repairing a school wall and more
recently fitting new gutterings, soffits and fascias.
“All of these have helped make our school a lovely place to be and the
nursery is now a vibrant learning environment which is welcoming to
all.
“We really hope this partnership continues and would particularly like
to thank Brian Price at VINCI who has organised everything for us.
”
NEW COUNCIL
HOMES
FOR WEST BROMWICH
Work has started on 29 new
council houses on the former
site of a West Bromwich junior
and infant school at Kent Close.
The £3.25 million development
sees Kier Living building the
much-needed two, three and fourbedroom family homes for the
council.
The properties are set to be
completed in August 2016.
Our housing investment partners, working with us, can offer a range of opportunities for schools
and colleges to get involved in construction and the business of improving council homes. Pupils can take part in a variety of work-related learning activities from primary stage to sixth form.
Here are some of the activities we can offer:
Work experience
Mock interviews and careers events
Enterprise days
Preparation for work days
Visits to offices and construction sites
Health and safety assemblies
Maths and design technology lessons
If you would like know more
about how the partnership
can work with your school or
college, please email:
[email protected]
The Sandwell Herald
14
Oldbury
LOCAL OFFICE
Sandwell Council House, Freeth Street, Oldbury B69 3DE
Improving council Making roads
homes and estates
We’ve improved 72 flats across six low-rise blocks in Oldbury
Green making them more energy efficient. We’ve refurbished
communal areas and made external improvements including
outside cladding and roofing work and installing doubleglazed windows.
Around 300 homes were surveyed across six high-rise blocks
on the Tividale part of the Coneygre Estate. Tenants have
been selecting their choice of kitchens and bathrooms ready
for improvements getting under way in the spring.
We’ve also invested in extra lighting and fencing on
estates that have traditionally attracted crime and antisocial behaviour, to make them safer and more attractive for
residents.
SAFER
We've been working across all four Oldbury
neighbourhoods – Bristnall, Langley, Oldbury
and Old Warley – to make roads safer for
residents, cyclists and schoolchildren.
Boosting activities
for young people
We’ve teamed up with Oldbury-based charity
KRUNCH to put on more activities for young people,
tailoring what’s on offer to the needs of each ward.
Working with three local churches – Kings Community
Church, Old Warley; George Road Church, Bristnall; and
St James’ Church, Langley – KRUNCH is providing wellattended weekly youth sessions.
Brandhall, Bleakhouse and Langley libraries have
expanded their range of activities for young people to
cater for different hobbies and interests.
And the Motiv8 project offers introductory and
educational courses showing young people new hobbies,
experiences and career opportunities, boosting young
people’s self-confidence and leading to work placements
for many.
You told us you wanted to reduce risks
caused by speeding, poor parking and
inconsiderate behaviour by drivers.
We've responded by:
We’ve opened a new skateboard park at Barnford Park
thanks to Local Area Budget money.
* council wardens visiting schools to talk
to parents about problems caused by
irresponsible parking;
And looking forward to 2016, we’re planning to improve
play and activity facilities at Lion Farm estate as part of
planned improvements to the high-rise blocks there.
* issuing fines to people parking where they
shouldn't around schools;
Bristnall
1
2
3
Old Warley
7
* improving some parking places by 'lining
out' bays to make the most of spaces
available and ease congestion;
Langley
4
5
6
8
9
10
11
12
* resurfacing pavements and roads, reducing
the risk of trips and falls; and
* working with the police on Speed Watch
campaigns to monitor speeding levels.
Police have also ticketed vehicles
for illegal and unsafe parking and
removed untaxed
and uninsured
vehicles.
Your Oldbury councillors
Ann Jarvis
07891 162 762
4
Sharon Davies
07772 895 213
7
Sue Crumpton
07854 374 855
Susan Downing
10 07976 042 372
Steven Frear
2 07814 212 572
5
Bill Gavan
07813 364 277
8
Steve Trow
07768 610 460
Mahboob Hussain
11 07796 337 799
Carol Goult
07773 625 573
6
Yvonne Davies
07772 405 686
Dr Trevor Crumpton
9 07714 116 434
1
Oldbury
* creating new spaces in high-demand areas;
3
Suzanne Hartwell
12 07814 862 104
The Sandwell Herald
15
Rowley Regis
LOCAL OFFICE
Payne Street, Blackheath B65 0DH
Healthy Passport
success for older people
Speeds reduced
Residents and visitors to Britannia Park
reported that cars had been speeding
in Mackmillan Road, Rowley Regis.
Nearly 150 older people have signed up for an Agewell Healthy
Passport and are enjoying their journey to a happier and healthier
older age – and there's still time to sign up.
Located in Old Hill High Street, Agewell is leading the council-funded Community Offer for
older people in Blackheath, Cradley Heath and Old Hill.
We listened to concerns and have
now installed a speed bump outside
the park entrance to slow traffic down and
make the road and park entrance safer for all.
Illegal tobacco
seized from shops
Agewell chief executive Deb Harrold said: “Our Older People’s Champions support
everyone who signs up. There are lots of ways to earn points to add to your Healthy
Passport, from having a flu jab or getting your eyes tested to joining a local community
group.”
Ann, aged 77, has joined a local gentle exercise class, re-registered with Ring & Ride and
had a free home safety assessment.
She said: “Taking part in Agewell’s Healthy Passport has helped me get out and about
again. If you’re not careful, you get to the point where you stay in all the time and you
even start to forget what day it is. It’s so good to be in contact with the outside world
again.”
Sandwell Trading Standards and West Midlands Police
have uncovered 6,400 cigarettes and 6.9kg of hand rolling
tobacco worth more than £5,200.
The scheme runs until 31 March 2016. To register yourself or someone you know,
call 0121 796 9333 or email [email protected]
www.agewelluk.org.uk
The illegal products were seized from two shops in
Rowley Regis by trading standards and police officers
working with highly-trained tobacco detection dogs to
sniff out illegal tobacco.
Both shops now face further action.
Barncroft Road
car park complete
In the last Herald, we told you about plans to create a car
park in Barncroft Road, Tividale.
Residents told us about parking problems there, so after
consultation with them we changed an area of disused
grassland into parking bays.
We’ve finished this work now and residents are using the
extra parking spaces.
Blackheath
1
Cradley Heath and Old Hill
2
3
Rowley
7
4
5
6
Tividale
8
9
10
11
12
Members of Agewell’s popular Rowley Regis Forum for
older people celebrate completing their Healthy Passport.
Your Rowley Regis councillors
1
Kerrie Carmichael
07905 274 227
4
John Tipper
07501 066 202
7
Susan Eaves
07794 088 247
Maria Crompton
10 01384 258 609
2
Danny Millard
07825 706 133
5
Julie Webb
01384 638 588
8
Chris Tranter
07853 969 171
Sandra Hevican
11 07814 295 254
3
Bob Price
0121 559 6412
6
Ann Shackleton
0121 550 1245
9
Barbara Price
0121 559 6412
Lorraine Ashman
12 07875 504 918
16
The Sandwell Herald
Smethwick
LOCAL OFFICE
Smethwick Council House, High Street, Smethwick B66 3NT
The Bearwood clock returns
The Bearwood clock has returned to its original home, just a few yards
from where it stood outside The King’s Head pub.
The clock had originally stood outside the pub
since 1905, but it moved to Birmingham city
centre in 1971 when the road was widened.
The Mayor, Councillor Barbara Price, and local
councillors unveiled the refurbished clock on
the day the clocks went back in October.
Councillor Steve Eling, deputy council
leader, said:
“It is fantastic to see the clock back in
Bearwood and I know it means a lot to
members of the local community.
It also includes a controller that will
re-set it in autumn and spring when
the clocks change.
Work on the transformation of
Lightwoods Park and House is back on
track, after the original company doing
the work went into administration.
Following a management buy-out of Fairhurst Ward
Abbotts, work started again in October through the new
company, Heritage Building & Conservation, and will be
completed next year.
The £5.2 million restoration will see the house transformed
with tearooms, community space and offices and the
historic parkland will be landscaped, along with a new
children’s playground.
We’re also improving the
pavements, landscaping and
replacing the street lights,
among other things.
We’re expecting the work to
be finished around March
2016. We’ll be suspending the
roadworks for three weeks over
Christmas so they don’t interfere
with Christmas shopping.
Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and Big Lottery Fund (BIG) are
putting £3.6 million towards the project under the Parks for
People Programme, with Sandwell Council providing £1.6
million.
We’re now planning a series of oral history events. If you
have memories of Lightwoods Park that you would like to
share, contact Julia Morris on 0121 569 4740 or email
[email protected]
For updates on the park restoration and future events, go to www.lightwoodspark.wordpress.com
Congratulations Julie!
Please bear with us. This is
important work to improve
safety and could help save lives.
For more details about what
we’re doing, go to
www.sandwell.gov.uk/capehill
Abbey
The clock’s dials, movement and lighting
brackets have been replaced and it has new
low-energy LED lighting.
Lightwoods Park restoration
Cape Hill
road safety
improvements
By the time you read this,
we will be well into our
work to improve road
safety on Cape Hill.
“The clock looks wonderful now after
being extensively restored by the worldrenowned clock restorers Smith of Derby.”
Many congratulations to long-serving Thimblemill librarian Julie McKirdy
who was named in the Queen’s Birthday Honours.
Smethwick
Julie, who has worked at the library for 37
years, was awarded the British Empire Medal
(BEM).
for Smethwick, a member of the Friends of
Lightwoods Park and House and secretary to
the Friends of Thimblemill Brook.
As well as working as a library supervisor
and organising music and theatre events at
Thimblemill, Julie is a community ambassador
She was presented with the honour at the
library last month. Well done Julie!
Your Smethwick councillors
1
2
3
Soho and Victoria
7
8
4
5
6
St Paul’s
9
10
11
12
1
Dr Ann Jaron
0121 429 9216
4
Linda Horton
0121 558 8719
7
Darren Cooper
07887 567 744
Preet Kaur Gill
10 07891 169 501
2
Bob Piper
0121 429 4276
5
Richard Marshall
07814 295 188
8
Mohammed Rouf
07766 421 423
Babu Singh Bawa OBE
11 07815 567 280
3
Steve Eling
0121 569 3045
6
Keith Davies
07836 512 941
9
Roger Horton
0121 558 8719
Zahoor Ahmed
12 07896 850 928
The Sandwell Herald
17
Tipton
LOCAL OFFICE
High Street, Princes End, Tipton DY4 9JB
Cannabis crackdown
We're tackling drugs in Tipton – and we need you to help us
'weed out' people you suspect of running cannabis factories.
“We have evicted tenants for this
before and anyone doing it risks
losing their home.”
Police raids have uncovered vast
cannabis factories, leading to a
string of arrests.
Our awareness campaign has
reached thousands of residents,
through cannabis tent roadshows,
walkabouts, leaflet drops, school
talks and social media.
Councillor Jo Hadley, Tipton town
lead member, said: “People tell us
they're worried about cannabis, so
we're taking action.
Sergeant Dave Rogers, from Tipton
Police, said: “Cannabis is an illegal
drug.
“If you are caught growing it in a
spare room or loft with the purpose
of selling it onto others, you
could be looking at a long prison
sentence.”
Read more about cannabis risks and
how to spot a cannabis factory at
www.sandwell.gov.uk/cannabis
“Using or growing it at home puts
children’s health, safety, learning
and education at serious risk.
Report growers and dealers by calling police on 101 (non-emergency
number) or Crimestoppers (anonymous) on 0800 555 111.
Help for young people
Boost for
Jubilee centre
Jubilee Park Community Centre
is looking great following a major
revamp.
It’s now a brilliant place for local people to meet
for social, leisure and educational activities.
The £44,400 refurbishment, funded by SITA
Trust, means the centre now has modern
facilities, including an office, kitchen, meeting
room, social room, community hall and male
and female changing rooms – as well as access
to health, education and employment services.
The boost follows Bangladeshi Women's
Association Ltd (BWA) taking over responsibility
for the centre's management and development.
It’s a great example of how voluntary groups
can bring in extra money the council can't.
1
2
Princes End
3
4
A community
project running
activities for
young people
in Great Bridge
has received
a £105,000
boost from Big
Lottery Fund's
Reaching
Communities
programme.
6
7
8
The project also supports twice weekly after school
clubs as well as holiday playschemes from Farley
Park Lodge.
For more information, email Karen Tittley at
[email protected] or call 0121 532 4023.
Your Tipton councillors
Tipton Green
5
Mayor Councillor Barbara Price at the Great Bridge Community Forum
celebration day at Farley Park
Great Bridge Community Forum's Karen Tittley
said: “Our aim is to help young people live healthier
lifestyles by providing qualified sports coaches to
offer free sporting activities on a weekly basis and
throughout school holidays.”
Razia Sattar, chair of BWA, said the
refurbishment is helping make the centre
a high-quality, thriving hub for the whole
community.
Great Bridge
Tipton Police Sergeant Dave Rogers, Councillor Jo Hadley,
Sandwell Council’s Lydia Dunne and Tipton Fire Station’s Wayne Little
9
1 Derek Rowley
07748 182 187
Bill Cherrington
4 07786 265 056
Ian Jones
7 07876 131 414
2 Joanne Hadley
07963 187 127
5 Philip Garrett
07814 295 104
8 Ahmadul Haque MBE
07786 277 367
3 Pete Allen
07976 958 843
6 Stephen Jones
07833 682 585
9 Syeda Khatun MBE
07766 421 436
18
The Sandwell Herald
Wednesbury
LOCAL OFFICE
Town Hall, Holyhead Road, Wednesbury WS10 7DF
SAFER 6 SUCCESS
During the Safer 6 campaign, parts of Wednesbury
received a makeover with rubbish, graffiti and
overgrown weeds being cleared by supervised
offenders doing Community
Payback.
Bagnall Street walkway
Before
Sandwell’s Safer 6 autumn campaign
kicked off with an information
roadshow in Wednesbury Town
Square. It featured representatives of
Sandwell Council, West Midlands Police
and Fire Services, volunteers from Sandwell
Crime Prevention Panel and Neighbourhood Watch and many more.
Cycle safety with BikeRight!
Young people had their bikes checked and were given free
saddle covers and lights at a BikeRight! safety event at
Friar Park Millennium Centre. They also received
health and careers advice.
After
High Street
Before
After
International
role for
Wednesbury
Young
Firefighters
A team of ten young people won
the honour of representing the
United Kingdom at the 2015
CTIF (International Technical
Committee for the Prevention and
Extinction of Fire).
The BikeRight! event was supported by neighbourhood officers, Connexions and police,
including Sergeant Sean Griffiths, PC Shendy Blakemore and PC Simon Ackroyd.
For information on BikeRight!, go to www.bikeright.org.uk/westmidlands
Friar Park
1
Wednesbury North
2
3
4
5
7
8
They hope to represent the UK
again in Austria in 2017.
Your Wednesbury councillors
Wednesbury South
6
The competition was held in
Poland.
Crew Commander Paul Ratcliffe
said: “They performed admirably
and did the brigade and UK proud.
I’m pleased to say that in their
relay they performed a flawless
run, with no mistakes and our
best-ever time.”
9
1
Geoff Lewis
0121 556 4253
4 Peter Hughes
07896 914 849
7 Pam Hughes
07772 892 315
2
Simon Hackett
07813 989 422
5 Tony Meehan
07971 631 364
8 Bob Lloyd
07889 101 052
3
Joy Edis
0121 505 6618
6 Elaine Costigan
0121 526 2757
9 Olwen Jones
07814 708 869
The Sandwell Herald
19
West Bromwich
LOCAL OFFICE
Court House, High Street, West Bromwich B70 8LU
Knife bin for town centre
This is part of a national project which started
in London and is now being rolled out in the
West Midlands.
As part of the Safer 6 campaign, a new knife
surrender bin was unveiled in West Bromwich
(at the corner of High Street/New Street) for
people to voluntarily give up weapons.
Anyone with information on those carrying
a knife should call police on 101 – or 999
in an emergency. Or call Crimestoppers
anonymously on 0800 555 111.
By putting knives in the secure bin, people can
help save lives and reduce the fear of being
injured or killed on the streets.
Exciting times for
Phoenix Collegiate
Phoenix Collegiate is being transformed over
the next two years under a major rebuilding
scheme.
The project will rebuild and refurbish the school
on the Clarkes Lane site, and the site in Friar Park
Road will no longer be used.
The transformation will provide a new main
entrance, teaching areas, dining area, main hall
and auditorium.
And the sports hall and an existing teaching block
will also be improved.
Students will still use the current buildings on the
Clarkes Lane site while building work continues
there.
We expect work will be finished by September 2017.
New lights for
extra security
We have provided extra lighting for the residents
of Birchfield Gardens, Yew Tree.
We have installed security lighting for all 16
bungalows as residents said they had felt unsafe and
vulnerable when leaving or returning to their homes.
Right, Desmond Jaddoo, founder of Birmingham Empowerment Forum, and Yvonne Mosquito, Deputy
Police and Crime Commissioner, join councillors at the launch of the knife surrender campaign
Joy for dance group
We’ve helped out Yew Tree & Tame Bridge
Community Centre dance group through our
Youth Offer.
The money we’ve provided has given local young people
the chance to train in first aid, dance and sports leader
programmes. Workshops took place throughout the
summer, with the dance group going on to perform and
win awards at a national competition.
This ongoing project will have a long-lasting impact.
Charlemont with Grove Vale
1
2
3
Hateley Heath
10
11
Great Barr with Yew Tree
4
5
6
Newton
12
13
Greets Green and Lyng
7
8
9
West Bromwich Central
14
15
16
17
18
Now residents are happier and complaints have
reduced.
Youth activities at
Great Barr centre
We have a programme of activities for young
people at Tanhouse Community Centre,
Hamstead Road.
Work will be starting on a new skate park there.
We are also providing a martial arts group and a
radio project.
For more information, call the centre on
0121 569 2545.
Your West Bromwich councillors
1 Liam Preece
07515 354 967
John Edwards
7 0121 531 5060
Joyce Underhill
13 0121 358 5742
2 Sue Phillips
07814 296 095
8 Jackie Taylor
07813 364 299
14 Keith Allcock
07970 202 313
3 Elizabeth Giles
07779 416 817
9 Gurcharan Singh Sidhu
0121 553 3090
15 David Hosell
07896 690 512
4 Chris Worsey
07891 630 477
10 Paul Sanders
07711 625 074
16 Kim Frazer
07976 056 515
5 Steve Melia
0121 502 5751
11 Paul Moore
07969 138 038
17 Mohinder Singh Tagger
07733 014 616
6 Shirley Hosell
07891 699 992
12 Pat Davies
07771 955 605
18 Bawa Singh Dhallu
07891 297 574
20
The Sandwell Herald
Storyplayers bring Christmas fun
S
andwell Storyplayers are
visiting schools, libraries,
museums and more, bringing
festive cheer, fun games, jokes –
and a special Christmas story.
Father Christmas has sent elves Elmo and Eli
to perform The Last Christmas Parcel, which
involves a large game of 'pass the storyparcel', where every layer torn open reveals a
clue towards the storybook inside.
THE FORCE IS STRONG – IN TIPTON!
With Star Wars about to return to cinema screens, Tipton Library hosts
Star Wars Saturday on Saturday 19 December from 10.30am to 12.30pm.
The event, in partnership with UK Garrison, features themed crafts and activities, face painting,
PS4 games and the chance to have a Star Wars ‘selfie’ with a legion of Star Wars characters.
There is also a fancy dress competition with the chance to win a special Star Wars prize.
Call Tipton Library on 0121 557 1796 for more info.
Footy – all year round!
Hadley Stadium in Smethwick has a fantastic new
3G football pitch that teams can use all year round.
Run by Sandwell Leisure Trust (SLT)
for Sandwell Council, the pitch
benefits local schools and colleges;
adult and junior football teams –
including for league games; and
West Bromwich Albion Foundation.
The pitch has a new ‘third
generation’ surface with perimeter
fencing.
Costs were kept down considerably
by using the base of the old sandfilled pitch.
Ash Rai, SLT’s deputy chief executive
officer and operations manager, said:
“3G is the very latest in artificial pitch
technology. Users can benefit from
excellent playing characteristics in
terms of ball bounce and ball roll,
meaning players have a high-quality
experience plus greater comfort.”
SLT also has a 3G pitch available to
book at Portway Lifestyle Centre,
Oldbury.
Email [email protected] or call
0300 012 0121 for more information
Water drains through easily so it can
about both pitches.
be used in any weather.
Creating story sessions for children aged up
to 11, our players bring stories to life all year
round through drama and interactive games,
keeping the audience fully involved. Sessions
focus on the national curriculum and early
years foundation stage.
Call 0121 569 2601 or email
[email protected]
for more information about booking the
Storyplayers for an event.
www.sandwell.gov.uk/storyplayers
The Sandwell Herald
*
* Calls FREE from landlines. Charges may
apply for calls and SMS texts from your
mobile phone.
21
22
The Sandwell Herald
Booktastic is back
Thousands of children in
Sandwell will be getting library
membership cards as part of a
Booktastic pack.
The scheme is designed to encourage children to
discover the joys of reading from a young age. Last
year the scheme helped to double the number of four
and five-year-olds regularly borrowing books from its
libraries.
The pack includes a library membership card, folder
and information about the library service.
There will also be special Booktastic
Missions for children to complete and
earn stickers.
Councillor Simon Hackett, cabinet
member for children's services, and Mayor of
Sandwell, Councillor Barbara Price, launched
the scheme in October with help from
Highfields Primary School pupils.
Reception children will receive their
Booktastic packs this school term.
Councillor Simon Hackett and Mayor Councillor Barbara Price with Dion
Salem, Najma Kaid, Ibraheem Farooq, Sam MacFarlane and Anjali Salhan
Need a job? Looking for work experience?
Moving house?
The Sandwell Guarantee is the council’s commitment to
helping young people find work, training, apprenticeships
and work experience.
When changing your address,
don’t forget to:
Interested in an apprenticeship?
Remember to take
your vote with you.
So far we have helped more than
1,000 people. And we want to
help many more.
Could your business benefit apprentice’s wages – worth up to
from an apprentice? We
£6,500.
could help with funding.
• redirect your mail;
We have 79 apprentices working
at the council in areas including
plastering, electrics, gas services,
gardening, admin and planning.
We’re looking for local businesses
willing to take on an apprentice.
In return we may be able to
fund up to half of the cost of an
• register to vote at your new address.
If you’re a business interested in
taking on an apprentice, go to
www.sandwell.gov.uk/guarantee
Or call us on 0121 569 2099.
You may struggle to get credit for a mortgage,
loan or other finance deals such as a mobile
phone contract.
Go to www.sandwell.gov.uk/elections to find
out where your polling station is, check if you’re
registered to vote, learn about working at an
election count and download our Register to
Vote app.
Interested? Apply online at
www.sandwell.gov.uk/guarantee
or call us on 0121 569 2099.
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Paying Council Tax at your new property does
not mean you are automatically registered to
vote, so everyone who is 16 and over in your
household will need to register.
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When you move house, your vote doesn’t move
with you. If you vote by post you will also need to
re-apply for a postal vote for your new address.
Not being registered to vote means you will not
be able to vote in any elections.
We can also help you find work
or an apprenticeship with a local
company, set you up with a work
experience placement at the
council or advise you on finding
a college course.
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• tell the utility companies; and
Council leader Councillor Darren Cooper with some of our apprentices
It’s quick and easy to register – go to
www.gov.uk/register-to-vote
Or give us a call on 0121 569 3244.
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www.sandw
DECEMBER
Tuesday 1, 8 and
15 December
4pm – 7.30pm
(last admission 6.30pm)
Build a Gift
Manor House Museum,
West Bromwich
Choose your Christmas gift,
personalise it, wrap it and add some
extras if you want. Choose from owl
tea-light holders, personalised tea
towels, bracelets and more.
Free entry; £1 – £10 per item
0121 588 2985
Thursday 3 December
6.30pm – 8.30pm
A Candlelit Christmas
Haden Hill House Museum & Old
Hall, Cradley Heath
Soak up the Christmas atmosphere
of two beautiful houses dressed
for the festive season and bathed
in candlelight. Light refreshments
in our tearoom, courtesy of The
Friends of Haden Hill Estate.
£3; concessions £2
01384 569444
Thursday 3 December
7pm – 10pm
Christmas with Ian Casey
Oak House Museum,
West Bromwich
Jump into the Christmas spirit with a
nightofmusicalentertainment.Seethe
house decorated for Christmas and lit
by candlelight. Licensed bar available.
Booking essential. Doors open 6pm.
£7; concessions £6
0121 553 0759
Saturday 5 December
10.30am – 1.30pm
Craft Fayre and Grotto
Oakham Library, Tividale
Fun for all the family. See Santa in
his grotto! Free entry
01384 255563
[email protected]
Sunday 6 and
Sunday 13 December
11am – 3pm
Deck the Halls
Haden Old Hall, Cradley Heath
See the hall decorated for Christmas
in Tudor style with real greenery and
pomanders. Our Victorian Haden Hill
House will also be open. Free entry
01384 569444
Sunday 6
December
4pm
Santa in the Woods
The Pavilion,
101 Lightwoods Hill,
Smethwick
See Santa ride through
the woods from Abbey Road
(by the fountain) to The Pavilion. Bring
your torch to light his way. Carol singing,
mince pies, mulled wine – andvisit Santa
in his grotto.
Free entry (small donations for Santa’s
Grotto)
0121 420 1061
www.warleywoods.org.uk
Sunday 6 December
11am – 3pm
‘Santa’s Coming!’
Elf Christmas Family Fun Day
Oak House Museum,
West Bromwich
Get into the festive mood at a family
fun day with the wonderfully wacky
Oak House elves. Create Christmas
craft decorations and browse our
craft stalls for presents. Free entry
0121 553 0759
Monday 7 December to
Saturday 12 December
2.30pm (all movies)
Multistory Mini-Film Festival
Wednesbury Library
The festival showcases several movies
– from Chains, Dogs & CHAOS (set in
Cradley Heath) to Teddy Gray’s Sweet
Factory, Tudor Crystal, Mark Goes to
Magnolia and much more.
Free entry
0121 569 2886
www.multistory.org.uk/events
The Sandwell Herald
Thursday 10 December
Saturday 19 December
7pm – 10pm (doors open 6pm)
7pm – 10pm (doors open 6pm)
Carol Concert with the
Salvation Army
Oak House Museum,
West Bromwich
See the Oak House lit by candlelight
and decorated for Christmas. Sing
along to favourite carols.
Booking essential.
£5; concessions £4
0121 553 0759
Saturday 12 December
11am – 3pm
A ‘Frozen’ Christmas and Santa
Manor House Museum,
West Bromwich
VisitSantainhisgrotto,makeChristmas
crafts, meet Anna, Elsa, Olaf and Sven
and sing your favourite Frozen songs.
£1.50
0121 588 2985
Saturday 12 December
7pm (doors open 6.30pm)
Sandwell Civic Carol Concert
Town Hall, West Bromwich
An evening of festive music featuring
the Langley Band, Sandwell & District
Scout Choir and Maggie O’Hara.
Compered by Mike Wyer from BBC
Radio Hereford & Worcester. £5
0121 569 3440/8276
Sunday 13 December
11am – 3pm
Jack and the Beanstalk Christmas
Haden Hill House Museum,
Cradley Heath
Festive family fun for all at our
Jack and the Beanstalk-themed
Christmas event. Music, children’s
entertainment, kids’ crafts, face
painting and much more.
Free entry (small charge
for some activities)
01384 569444
Sunday 13 December
11am – 3pm
Santa’s Grotto Party and Disco
Oak House Museum,
West Bromwich
Family fun Christmas party.Visit Santa
in our spectacular grotto, get a present
and then bring your friends to our
magic disco with face painting and
balloons. £4
0121 553 0759
Thursday 17 December
7pm
Classic Christmas Movie:
It’s a Wonderful Life
Manor House Museum,
West Bromwich
ComeandenjoythisclassicChristmas
film. Free entry
0121 588 2985
For more info about museum events, visit www.sandwell.gov.uk/museumevents
23
Nightwatch ‘Singing the Seasons’
Oak House Museum,
West Bromwich
A celebration with 13th to 18th century
music.HeartheoldestsurvivingEnglish
songsandsomeoftheearliestsurviving
carolsplayedwithmedieval,renaissance
and baroque instruments. Booking
essential.
£6; concessions £5
0121 553 0759
Saturday 19 December
6.30pm – 10pm
Christmas Family Disco
Manor House Museum,
West Bromwich
Boogie the night away to live music and
a disco with fun and games and snack
bar (non-alcoholic). Booking essential.
£5
0121 588 2985
Tuesday 22 December
12 noon
Christmas Movie Club
Manor House Museum,
West Bromwich
Come and see a 3D Christmas movie
in the Great Hall.
Free entry
(£1.50 for 3D glasses)
0121 588 2985
JANUARY
Saturday 16 January
10am – 2pm
Sandwell Connexions
New Year, New Start Careers Fair
Sandwell College Central Sixth
campus, New Street,
West Bromwich
Aged 16-19? Come along for
jobs, education, training and
apprenticeship opportunities.
Free entry
0121 569 2955
Saturday 30 January
10.30am – 12.30pm
Zeppelins over the Black Country
Tipton Library
Local history day based on the 100th
anniversary of Zeppelin raids on
Tipton in 1916. Photo exhibitions,
local history displays, book sales
and talk by Tipton historian Derek
Nicholls. Event includes the official
unveiling of the new Zeppelin victims’
memorial. Free entry
0121 557 1796
[email protected]