10 respondents referred to the community with a sense of belonging, togetherness, friendliness and community spirit being mentioned specifically. The energy of people putting effort into voluntary work, often innovative, was seen as a positive (38%)
Green spaces, including playing fields, canal tow paths and parks (12%).
The heritage of the town with its ‘fine industrial past’ and its ‘rich history’ and its old market hall. The ‘…potential to capitalise on its historical heritage’ was commented on. (19%)
The High Street was described as ‘…an old established Black Country market town’ and its facilities were seen as a positive with ‘…may shops for local people to buy groceries, clothing and fresh meat’. Its markets ‘…though looking tired and in need of a boost still have life and potential’. (15%).
The town was seen to benefit from its location ‘…close to both urban centres and rural escapes’…with ‘…everything at hand…’ (8%).
The mix of facilities – the town has a ‘…wide variety of places accessible to the community. Shops, banks, supermarket, market stalls, library, Civic Centre, churches.’ ‘The area comprises of three local schools for the children of the community, and a children’s centre…these link well together’. There are ‘pockets of green in the area which is great to encourage outdoor activities for all ages’. Brierley Hill has a ‘…mixture of land use from nature reserves to housing to industry to shopping’ – ‘an all round community. The shopping opportunities at Merry Hill were also mentioned (42%).
People who were ‘friendly’, robust ‘in the face of diversity’ with the ‘potential to build’ and were well networked in carrying out ‘a lot of good work’ and ‘innovation among the voluntary and community groups’ (35%).