Civic Voice chief, Ian Harvey, guest of honour at Brierley Hill Civic Society AGM

Brierley Hill Civic Society
Brierley Hill Civic Society

Brierley Hill Civic Society – Monday 17th February 2014, 5.30pm, St Michael’s Church, Bell Street South, Brierley Hill

You are cordially invited to attend the next meeting of Brierley Hill Civic Society on Monday 17th February 2014 commencing at 5.30pm at St Michael’s Church.

This meeting will be our AGM and we are hugely privileged to have Ian Harvey, the national director of Civic Voice, the umbrella organisation for Civic Societies, as our main speaker.  Ian will be speaking on:

‘ The Civic Society Movement – Past, Present and Future’

I am sure that this will be fantastic talk and a good chance to hear what is happening elsewhere in the country.

The agenda for the meeting will be:

  1. Apologies
  2. Ian Harvey: The Civic Society Movement – Past, Present and Future
  3. Minutes of previous meeting (AGM 2013 and Jan 2014 – see below)
  4. Treasurer’s report
  5. Election of officers
    1. Chair
    2. Vice-chair
    3. Secretary
    4. Treasurer
    5. Brierley Hill in Bloom update
    6. Information Exchange
      1. Merry Hill sale
      2. Point North Flats
      3. HCA properties in High Street
      4. Clean Power
      5. RDF
      6. Other
      7. Any Other Urgent Business
      8. Date of Next Meeting – Monday 27th March 2014 


Minutes of the AGM of Brierley Hill Civic Society Held on Monday 18th February 2013 at St Michael’s Church Hall, commencing at 5.30pm


Beryl Biggs, Judy Foster, Rachel Harris, Zaf Islam, Betsy Lafferty, Andrew Mann-Ray


Geoff Attwood, Janet Attwood, Shane Birch-Bastock, Joy Cooper, Beryl Fisher, Kathy Garton, John James, Stephen Masters, Pat McAlpin, Maggie Norton, Jenny Sunter, Tim Sunter, Rosemary Tomkinson, Dennis Whittaker,


The minutes of the AGM held on 20th Feb 2012 were agreed as a true record.

Minutes of the 17th September 2012 meeting were agreed as a true record.

Officers Reports

The chair reminded members of the successful events which had been organised by the Civic Society in the previous 12 months.  Speaking events had been particularly successful with Geoff Tristram, Ned Williams and Michael Taylor all having made excellent contributions.  Stephen Masters had given a very successful tour of the central Brierley Hill area in June 2012, and Jenny Sunter had helped facilitate a very successful Christmas Lights switch on event in the town.  Thanks were expressed to all who had taken part during the year.

Jenny Sunter reported on the need to renew membership of the Civic Trust and in the absence of the treasurer indicated that the Society would have circa £100 in the bank.

Election of officers

The following people were duly nominated, seconded and elected as officers of the Society for the year 2013-2104

Chair: Tim Sunter

Vice-chair: Shane Birch-Bastock

Secretary: Jenny Sunter

Treasurer: Dennis Whittaker

It was agreed to approach Rachel Harris to see if she would be willing to act as auditor

Brierley Hill Community Forum

TS reported that a number of Brierley Hill organisations were or had been going through a lull in their activities.  Brierley Hill Community Forum had similar aims to ourselves with respect to regeneration and had significant funds in their accounts.  It was suggested that it might be worth considering a merging of the Civic Society and the Forum as we could bring an active membership to the Forum’s activities, whilst the Forum would have resources to support the work of the Civic Society.  The Society discussed this issue and expressed its view that a merger might be a positive step forward and that a joint meeting with the Forum take place for the March meeting.

Christmas 2013

JS reported that work was well underway for the Christmas 2013 event which was earmarked for 30th November.  Action Heart were being asked to help with the proposed Santa Run and other activities being tested for feasibility included the Christmas Fair at Insight House, performances throughout the town, a pantomime hunt and enhanced publicity – possible by grouping organisations together under a ‘Brierley Hill Christmas Festival’ brand.  All help and support would be welcomed.

Community First Brierley Hill Hill Plan

TS reported on progress on the plan which had to be produced by 31st March.  Society members would have the chance to have an input at the March joint meeting with the Community Forum.  Some £40,000 of funding would be available to community groups in Brierley Hill ward over the next two years.  It was hoped to submit a bid for the Civic Society to fund future speakers and for the Christmas Project to enable a budget to be enacted to support the event

Future Programme

The bid for funds had been submitted (see above).  Once the outcome of the bid was known it would be possible to formulate a programme.  It was important to keep a balance between speakers and to keep a focus on regeneration issues.

The meeting closed at 7pm.

Continue reading Civic Voice chief, Ian Harvey, guest of honour at Brierley Hill Civic Society AGM

Pathé video footage of WW1 tank in Brierley Hill

Dr Paul Collins spoke about the tank ‘Julian’ visiting Brierley Hill in 1918 during his recent talk to the Civic Society. A bit of online research resulted in this splendid footage from Pathé films.  The first shot is of the tank at the junction of Church Street and Church Hill, next to St Michael’s Church. The action then moves to Aston Road, near Queen’s Cross in Dudley – by the cemetery.  The house in the background is still there today. Many civilians seem to be wearing badges.  These could well be silver badges issued to returning troops and to civilian workers in essential industries – it was important to wear these to avoid the stigma being attached to those men at home who were not fighting.


Clean Power proposal rejecting by Dudley Planners

Young chefs can cook up a storm in our exclusive Black Country tourism contest | Have a lovely time

Young chefs can cook up a storm in our exclusive Black Country tourism contest

Written by Have a lovely time on July 16, 2013

Want to win a free family hotel break? Read on and get your kids stuck in!

The Copthorne Hotel, Merry Hill wants young food buffs to come up with a unique dish as part of a summer competition launched to celebrate the hotel’s 20th birthday.

Winning youngsters will be given the chance to have their dish featured on the hotel’s menu for 20 days.

They’ll also get to enjoy a break at the hotel and tickets for Dudley Zoo and a canal barge journey courtesy of Dudley Canals Trust Trips. Other Black Country attractions can also be chosen.

The competition will help raise awareness about a special family deal available at the hotel which includes a stay and visit to a local attraction including the zoo and The Quest, which has a vast range of activities including a Nerf combat zone and a high ropes area. This should give parents the chance to release their inner child.

There are six prizes up for grabs in total, with three for the under 10s and three for over 10s. Children are being asked to send recipes for their favourite meals, with an image of them enjoying their dish to be shared in an online gallery.

Copthorne general manager Matt Ward said: “We wanted to have a fun competition with young people at the heart of it, to mark our 20th anniversary and help highlight our brilliant attractions and family leisure breaks.” He continued to say that: ”We’re really excited at the prospect of featuring the dishes on menus and seeing what budding Jamie Olivers and Delia Smiths come up with. Perhaps they want to suggest something simple like bangers and mash, something wildly inventive from their own imagination or even a taste of some wonderful local produce.”

“Winning entrants will also receive a complimentary overnight stay with dinner, bed and breakfast for up to three young people and two adults.”

So go on, get those ovens fired up and those cameras charged. Snap away at all your culinary delights for your chance to win and become a gastronomic legend. We will personally host the gallery here on Have a Lovely Time so that you can see yourself with your favourite dishes. Images will also be shared on social media including facebook by the Copthorne.

Picture shows:  Elliot Beech from Dudley Quest, Andrea Hales from Dudley Zoo, June Hodgetts from Dudley Canal Trust Trips and front row Scott Jones – demi chef de-partie at the Copthorne Hotel with Will Mills from Quest.

To enter the competition, children should send details of their favourite dish, with a recipe and image of them enjoying it to Closing date: August 31st at 11:59pm.

Competition terms and conditions: Entry is open to UK residents. Anyone related to the team at The Marketing Room, publishers of Have a Lovely Time can’t enter. It’s a condition of entry that all rules are accepted as final and that the competitor agrees to abide by these rules. The decision of the judges is final and no correspondence will be entered into. The winner may be asked to participate in publicity. Events may occur that render the prize draw itself or the awarding of the prize impossible due to reasons beyond the control of the Promoter (The Marketing Room) and accordingly the Promoter may at its absolute discretion vary or amend the competition and the entrant agrees that no liability shall attach to the Promoter as a result thereof. Your email address will not be passed to a third party, but may be used by the Promoter to send you details of future competitions and offers run by

via Young chefs can cook up a storm in our exclusive Black Country tourism contest | Have a lovely time.

Fusion Festival

Jessie J, Ne-Yo JLS, McFly, The Wanted, The Saturdays & James Arthur
All confirmed for Birmingham’s Brand New Fusion Festival
August 31st & September 1st 2013

In support of youth charity The Prince’s Trust and in association with Capital FM

Jessie J, Ne-Yo, JLS, The Wanted, McFly, The Saturdays and James Arthur are among the first names to be confirmed for this summer’s brand new Fusion Festival, in support of The Prince’s Trust and in association with Capital FM.

Joining them are Union J, Wiley, Amelia Lily, Wretch 32, Conor Maynard with many more to be announced. Birmingham’s iconic Cofton Park will play host to the ultimate summer pop party with 60,000 people and some of the biggest acts from both sides of the pond coming together for a huge weekend of pop at its very best.

Chart topper Jessie J will headline Saturday night’s proceedings alongside platinum-selling boy band JLS and “It’s All About You” crooners McFly. British rapper Wiley, Union J and songstress Amelia Lily will also be taking to the stage as part of an incredible mix of artists to play the festival.

Sunday will see American R&B god Ne-Yo bring the noise to Cofton Park, where he’ll be joined by chart heartthrobs The Wanted and uber glam The Saturdays, fresh from gaining their first UK Number One with “What About Us”. Wretch 32, Conor Maynard and this year’s X Factor winner James Arthur are also on the bill, with many more acts to be announced across the weekend.

Expect spectacular live performances, massive chart smash hits plus all the fun of the festival fair with a full fairground and many other interactive events. Fusion Festival is proud to support The Prince’s Trust, with £5 from each ticket sale donated to the charity to help change young lives across the UK. The Prince’s Trust is a youth charity that helps vulnerable young people to turn their lives around.

Youth charity The Prince’s Trust has helped more than 700,000 young people since 1976 and supports 100 more each day. Further information about The Prince’s Trust is available at or on 0800 842 842.

Tickets are priced at:
£35 per day – general admission £60 weekend – general admission ticket
£50 – per day Golden Circle Ticket £95 weekend Golden Circle Ticket
Tickets are available online at and also from ticket partners Ticketmaster, The Ticket Factory @FusionFest

Concord Market Brierley Hill Closing Down

It is with great sadness and regret that we have decided to close Concord Market in Brierley Hill on 29th June 2013.

Some traders wish to stop in the town so we will do our best to relocate them

We must stress that this decision has not been made lightly but this will have no effect on the Concord Market at Sedgley.

This shows how important it is to support your High Street Concord Market as been in Brierley Hill for over 40 years

and may we take this opportunity to thank you all for the support over the years.



Brierley Hill christmas lights switch on fixed for Saturday 30th November #BHXmas2013

2012 – rain on the day, but a good time had by all. Perhaps we need an umbrella competition this year!

Brierley Hill Christmas lights switch on has been fixed for 30th November 2013.

A christmas fair, Santa Run, lantern parade, pantomime hunt, choir and other musical sensations are in the feasibility/planning stage as the planning group gets to grips with the logistics of putting on an even bigger and better event than last year.

A small committee of volunteers, traders, councillors. Stourbridge College, schools  and council officials has been established and community engagement will be a key theme.  The group has already been able to achieve an award from the Community First initiative towards the cost of the event.

All offers of help are welcome – email  Watch this space as details firm up.

Brierley Hill in the Bugle