Important information for B26 readers

B26 message

Unfortunately B26 will have to close for a short time. Today my wife was taken ill and was rushed to the Heartlands Hospital where she was diagnosed with a stroke. As I’m sure you will all understand, B26 and my other community commitments will have to take a back seat.

Lols Photo for B26 Lol Thurstan. Editor and Publisher of B26

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Birmingham Airport gets a shock on how passengers rate the airport

B26 News Report

B26 has always been a very big supporter of Birmingham Airport, I was therefore very disappointed to read a report that the airport has come twelfth out of fifteen in satisfaction ratings by passengers.

Birmingham Airport (3)

Out of a score of 120 Birmingham got 89.39, Newcastle getting 94.83 and voted the top airport for satisfaction, Heathrow only doing slightly better by coming eleventh. Out of the twelve questions, Birmingham’s highest score out of ten was 7.93, this was for general cleanliness, the lowest being 7.13 for baggage reclaim.

BHX performance figures

I have reported in B26 on a numerous occasions how Birmingham has achieved great success by attracting more airlines to more destinations, however, they now need to look at what the passengers think, and as many a school report has said ‘must do better’. (click on the chart to read the details of what passengers said)

Lols photo No 4 Lol Thurstan. Editor & Publisher of B26

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Is the police 101 service a failure

B26 News Report

Keeping the residents in our community safe is very important and B26 has regularly supported the police to this end. It was quite disappointing to read the headline in the Daily Mail; “Three million calls to 101 police line go unanswered”.

Campaign photography for promotion of 101 non-emergency national police number.

Campaign photography for promotion of 101 non-emergency national police number.


I have attended many police meetings as a representative of NW where there has been numerous complaints from people who say that they wait ages to get through, or that the service doesn’t appear to work at the weekend. 



The 101 service was introduced by the Labour Government in 2006 but was abandoned after costing £41 million and failing to reduce 999 calls. Following its reintroduction. callers are charges 15p no matter how long they are on the phone.

Out of the 36 police forces that responded to Freedom of Information requests, the number of abandoned calls since 2012 until May this year is 3,469,984. It seems very obvious to me that this service is just not working.

Lols photo No 4 Lol Thurstan. Editor & Publisher of B26

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Meetings in Sheldon this week

 WMP Lampost            Sheldon Ward Police Tasking meeting (2)           WMP Lampost

There will be a Sheldon Ward Police Tasking meeting this Tuesday 19th July 7.00pm at the Manston Road Common Rooms.

There has been a lot of effort by local community leaders working with Sheldon Neighbourhood Policing Team to get these meetings bi-monthly. This is your opportunity to raise your concerns relating to crimes issues in our area with an officer of Sheldon Police Neighbourhood Team.

Please make every effort to attend this meeting, there is always a local Councillor in attendance. Please see map of the venue.

Police Taskin meeting venue (2)

(click on the map to see more detail)


Sheldon Residents Association meeting

Howard SRA 1

Howard Selwyn, Chairman of Sheldon Residents Association

The next meeting of Sheldon Residents Association will be on the 21st July 7.30pm at 568 Barrows Lane,  B 26 3BE

This is your opportunity to try and make a difference in Sheldon. There is always a local Councillor present at these meetings for to raise any concerns you have over issues in Sheldon. 

B26 Community (2) supports all of our community groups in Sheldon

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Birmingham leader seeks urgent talks with new PM

Birmingham News Logo (1)

City Council leader Cllr John Clancy is seeking urgent talks with new Prime Minister Theresa May to make the case of Birmingham’s role in the post-Brexit UK economy.

Cllr John Clancy Leader of BCC

Cllr Clancy has written to the new PM explaining why he feels Birmingham has a big contribution to make. And he has urged the new PM to ensure that cities have a voice in negotiations to exit the European Union.

As she launched her bid for leadership of the Conservative Party in Birmingham last week, Mrs May called for greater fairness in developing all Britain’s large cities – not just “one or even two of our great regional cities”.

Now Cllr Clancy wants to discuss what that means for Birmingham.

He said: “I’m a proud Labour politician but I’m also a pragmatist and from day one in my role as Birmingham City Council leader I’ve met, worked with and lobbied a number of Conservative government ministers. So I’ve wasted no time in writing to Theresa May requesting an urgent meeting with myself and other Birmingham leaders to discuss how our city can play a big part in addressing the post-Brexit challenges the UK now faces.

“In my letter I’ve stressed that our great city is well placed to work with her government to grasp the opportunities and to tackle the challenges that the next period holds.

“In the short term we must work out a way of maintaining the investment plans that are currently based on EU funding and ensure that long term repatriation of funds comes down to the local level and not just Whitehall.

“There must be a voice for the great cities in the negotiations with the EU, as part of the local government representation that Greg Clark has already promised and I would hope the news Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Sajid Javid will agree.”

Cllr Clancy added: “I believe that the Brexit vote was a call for all politicians to take up that challenge and to take seriously the need to reform our over-centralised and out-dated approach to government.

“That’s why I particularly welcome the PM’s commitment to creating a plan to help all of our “great regional cities”. Actions of course will speak louder than words and I firmly believe that Birmingham can and should be at the forefront of any such plan.”


Enjoy the sun – stay out of the water

With Birmingham set to bask in the sunshine this week, the city council has warned people to stay out of ponds, lakes and canals across the city.

The city is set for a mini heatwave this week, with temperatures set to hit 30C (86F) by Tuesday.

And Cabinet member for Health and Social Care Cllr Paulette Hamilton has warned people not to cool down in open water.

She said: “We want people to enjoy the sunshine but we also want them to be sensible. So the message is simple: Stay out of the water and stay safe.

“Open water may look inviting on the surface but there are often hidden dangers underneath. If you want to swim, we have swimming pools across Birmingham where people can swim safely.”

Cllr Hamilton has also urged people to check on elderly relatives and neighbours to ensure they are coping in the heat.

Extreme heat can affect anyone, but the most vulnerable people are:

  • older people, especially those over 75
  • babies and young children
  • people with a serious chronic condition, especially heart or breathing problems
  • people with mobility problems, for example people with Parkinson’s disease or who have had a stroke
  • people with serious mental health problems
  • people on certain medications, including those that affect sweating and temperature control
  • people who misuse alcohol or drugs
  • people who are physically active, for example labourers or those doing sports

Top advice for being sun safe:

  • Shut windows and pull down the shades when it is hotter outside. If it’s safe, open them for ventilation when it is cooler.
  • Avoid the heat: stay out of the sun and don’t go out between 11am and 3pm (the hottest part of the day) if you’re vulnerable to the effects of heat.
  • Keep rooms cool by using shades or reflective material outside the windows. If this isn’t possible, use light-coloured curtains and keep them closed (metallic blinds and dark curtains can make the room hotter).
  • Have cool baths or showers, and splash yourself with cool water.
  • Drink cold drinks regularly, such as water and fruit juice. Avoid tea, coffee and alcohol.
  • Stay tuned to the weather forecast on the radio or TV, or at the Met Office website.
  • Plan ahead to make sure you have enough supplies, such as food, water and any medications you need.
  • Identify the coolest room in the house so you know where to go to keep cool.
  • Wear loose, cool clothing, and a hat if you go outdoors.
  • Check up on friends, relatives and neighbours who may be less able to look after themselves.

Cllr Paulette_Hamilton (2)

Cllr Hamilton added: “We all want to enjoy the sunshine but high temperatures can be dangerous, so please keep an eye on people who may be particularly vulnerable such as older people, young children and those with serious illnesses.

“It’s important that people take sensible steps to ensure they stay safe in the sun. First of all, we’d advise people to avoid sunburn and heat exhaustion. Use sunscreen with a sun protection factor of at least 15 – the higher the factor, the better.”

Useful links

Sun Safety:

Summer safety for younger children:

Barbecue food safety:

Preventing hay fever:

B26 Community (2) keeping you updated


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West Midlands Police news update for Monday 18th July

WMP Lampost

   Career criminal jailed for Birmingham robberies

A career criminal who stole just over £300 in cash in two armed robberies at Birmingham convenience stores has been jailed for 13 years.
Ain Williams, of Amiss Garden, Small Heath raided the two stores in West Heath and The Green, Meriden in June 2014.
The 50-year-old threatened staff with a police style baton before demanding cash.
The court heard that he planned the robberies and had a getaway driver waiting for him on both occasions.
But he was tracked down by detectives after CCTV caught him on camera getting into the car and an extensive investigation linked him to the getaway driver and the crimes.
Williams was arrested in September 2014 and charged with the offences. He appeared before Birmingham magistrates and was remanded pending a trial.
Investigating officer Detective Constable Kate Fitzgerald said: “Williams chose to represent himself at trial and deliberately tried to obstruct the justice system by requesting adjournments and claiming police interview tapes had been tampered with.
“Twice trials were abandoned and reset for later dates and finally on Wednesday 13 July a jury found him guilty of both robberies. He was sentenced on the same date.”
DC Fitzgerald added: “Williams targeted vulnerable shop workers in convenience stores with no regard for their welfare. During each trial witnesses were called and this also took its toll on their health, causing stress and anxiety.
“I am pleased that this has now concluded and they can move on with their lives.”
The getaway driver, Lee Saddler, aged 49 from Nevada Way, Chelmsley Wood, pleaded guilty on the first day of the trial and will be sentenced on 29 July.


Man charged with firearms offences in Birmingham warrant

A Birmingham man will appear before magistrates on Monday 18 July after a warrant was executed in Alum Rock on Saturday.

Several firearms were seized in the search at Pelham Road just after 5.30am and a man and a woman were arrested.

A number of houses in the vicinity were evacuated as a precaution while the search was carried out.

Unemployed Danyal Aziz, aged 22, was charged with possession of firearms and a prohibited weapon. He will appear at Birmingham Magistrates Court.

A 25-year-old woman has been released on police bail while enquiries continue.

B26 Community (2)

Updating you on news from WMP newsroom direct to B26.

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Proposed Bus service Changes – East Birmingham / North Solihull

WM Travel logo                   WM Travel bus Solihull 71

National Express West Midlands (NXWM) have advised that they are undertaking a public consultation on a number of bus service changes in the East Birmingham / North Solihull Area.

The proposals look to provide faster and more reliable bus services between North Solihull, Solihull Town Centre and the UK Central Hub (inc. the airport, NEC, Jaguar Land Rover and Birmingham Business Park). A more resilient and reliable bus network will also better accommodate the ambitious managed growth agenda for UK Central and encourage better use of the bus network reducing the reliance on private car and the associated congestion.

The proposed changes include:

  • higher frequency 24/7 bus services between Solihull Rail Station and Chelmsley Wood Town Centre via the UK Central Hub using high quality ‘Platinum’ buses;
  • New bus services to the NEC and ‘Resorts World’; and,
  • Provision of additional overnight bus services at Solihull Rail Station and Chelmsley Wood Town Centre, providing a network of overnight services for Solihull.

Full details of the changes can be found at the following link;

Please give your views by email to however please do feel free to contact me or Richard Mayes direct should you wish to discuss in more detail.

Kind Regards

Jon Hayes
Strategic Highways Partnership Manager

Direct Dial: 0121 214 7826
Mobile: 07920 560546

Transport for West Midlands, 16 Summer Lane, Birmingham, B19 3SD

B26 Community (2) keeping you updated

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