Category Archives: Business

Businesses encouraged to ‘Meet the Buyer’

Artists impression of the 'Light' cinema now under construction
Artists impression of the ‘Light’ cinema now under construction

Small businesses and sole traders who work in the construction and supply industries are being given the chance to pitch their products and services to developers who are working on three exciting projects in Walsall.

Walsall businesses are being urged to attend Walsall’s third Meet the Buyer event at Walsall College’s Wisemore campus on Thursday 30 April to find out about contracts on offer at the two new leisure centres in Bloxwich and Oak Park and the new cinema and retail development at Walsall Waterfront.

More than 60 local businesses attended the last Meet the Buyer event in November, which centred around the £26m Darlaston highways improvement scheme, the new £11m Business and Sports Hub at the college and the £3.2m HQ for Jhoots Pharmacy.

Construction firm ISG is working with Walsall Council to deliver both leisure centres, which will include a 25 metre eight lane swimming pool, teaching/learner pool, six court sports hall, 100 station fitness suite, dance studio, two squash courts, cafe, artificial turf pitch and additional car parking spaces for each centre.

Both sites are expected to be completed by Summer next year.

Kier Property – through their appointed contractor G F Tomlinson Group – is behind the £12m, eight screen The Light Cinema development, which will provide around 5,000 sq ft of retail and leisure space, including four restaurants, Chiquito, Pizza Express, Bella Italia and Hungry Horse.

Both developers are keen to work with local suppliers and tradespeople to ensure Walsall businesses benefit from each project.

ISG Regional director Jon James, said: “This event is an open invitation to all those high-quality construction trade specialists looking to learn more about the opportunities associated with this key leisure scheme.

“The region has a wealth of skills and expertise that we are looking to deploy on the construction of the Oak Park and Bloxwich leisure centres, and we are determined that the scheme will create a skills legacy that will not only benefit the local economy, but also the wider construction industry.”

Andy Sewards, managing director at G F Tomlinson Group added: “We’re delighted to be involved in such an important regeneration project on Walsall’s Waterfront which is helping to create new job opportunities and grow the local economy. We’re committed to working closely with all stakeholder partners and local people to ensure this new leisure complex development is the best it can be to meet the needs of the local community.”

The event is open to businesses who are already involved in commercial contracts and to those who are interested in moving into this field.

Simon Neilson, Walsall Council’s executive director for economy and environment, said: “It is one of our top priorities to ensure that local businesses and our residents who are self-employed are given the opportunity to work with these key developers to boost the economy in Walsall by creating new and safeguarding existing jobs.

“We want to ensure that every investment we and our partners make into Walsall is an investment in our economic future.”

Local firms will have access to one-to-one business advice and the opportunity to meet with the developers to help businesses grow and access the supply chain.

To find out more and to book your place at the event please visit Eventbrite atwalsall-mtb-apr15.eventbrite.co.uk or contact Andrew Clayton in Walsall Council’s Employment Growth Team on 01922 654468 or emailAndrew.Clayton@walsall.gov.uk.

Mice close Bloxwich bakery

A bakery in Bloxwich was ordered to close its doors temporarily earlier this week, after mouse droppings were discovered in the factory’s food storage areas.

Polish Bakery Mazowse Ltd, of Bloxwich Lane Industrial Estate, Bloxwich Lane, was issued with a Hygiene Emergency Prohibition Notice, requiring its immediate closure, following a visit by environmental health officers on Wednesday 25 February.

Walsall Magistrates supported the decision taken at a court hearing this morning. (Friday 27 February)

The court heard the owners have worked closely alongside environmental health officers to address the concerns they raised and the factory was allowed to reopen this morning.(Friday 27 February)

Neil Harris, Principal Environmental Health Officer, for Walsall Council, said: “Mice spread diseases such as salmonella and their faeces can contaminate food products thereby placing the public’s health at risk if they are present in an area where food is being kept.

“Environmental health officers carry out regular inspections throughout the borough where food is being prepared and sold. The safety of our residents is paramount and we will always look to take prompt action against those premises that fall outside the required hygiene standards.”

Eggcellent Easter Saturday all set for Bloxwich!

Easter Fun in Bloxwich

Thanks to the generous support of local businesses, clubs and organisations as well as Walsall Council, Bloxwich families can look forward to a most eggcellent public Easter event in the village again this year – all set for tomorrow, Saturday 30th March!

The event will run from 11am to 3pm and leaflets and posters have been distributed to promote the family fun!

Confirmed activities include:

  • Reach Up Tower in Park Rd by the toilets (free activity)
  • Easter Bonnet Workshop at Bloxwich Market (free activity)
  • Face Painting at Bloxwich Market (free activity)
  • Donkey Rides in Park Rd by the toilets (small fee charges)
  • Walkabout Acts including The Mad Hatter, Stilt walker, and balloon modeller – promoting an Egg Trail Competition
  • Easter Bonnet Parade Competition at 2pm for 2.30pm in the Market Place for children up to 12 years of age
  • Easter Egg Team Hunt in King George V Playing Fields from the Play Area off Stafford Rd at 10.30am (see poster below).
  • Visit from the Easter Bunny and Easter Chick

The events are also of course aimed at increase the footfall into Bloxwich, and therefore supporting both a healthy business community and jobs. Activities organised to hopefully assist business and local organisations include:

  • The Egg Trail competition
  • Business Offer leaflet and promoting activities
  • Charity Stalls on Bloxwich Market

The Egg Trail competition starts at 2pm from the Market Place and offers the chance for families to track down up to ten letters, each in a different business in the village centre.

The event has been organised by the ever-energetic Nikki Rolls of Walsall Council, working with Bloxwich Business Partnership to support local trade, organisations and the people of Bloxwich.  For more about the event check out the Partnership’s Facebook page via the above link and click on the link below to download the PDF event poster.

Easter Eggstravaganza

Photo courtesy Bloxwich Business Partnership/Walsall Council

Sparkling spectacle is icing on Bloxwich’s Christmas cake

Bloxwich Christmas tree and lights, Promenade Gardens, reflecting in the historic 'National' school windows
Bloxwich Christmas tree and lights, Promenade Gardens, reflecting in the historic ‘National’ school windows

In our final festive posting before Christmas, The Bloxwich Telegraph would like to wish all its readers both  Festive Felicitations and Season’s Greetings, wherever they are.

And it is a particular pleasure to conclude our 6th year first as The Bloxidge Tallygraph and now The Bloxwich Telegraph by presenting a photo-spectacular of the village’s wonderful new Christmas Lights – truly taking us all back to the days of our youth when bright bulbs hanging in trees along the High Street always used to complement the Bloxwich Christmas tree in Promenade Gardens, come rain, snow or hail!

For this sparkling return of our much-missed lights, now in powerful LED form, we have to thank the Bloxwich Business Partnership CIC and  donors, raising a total of £15,000 pounds to pay for the lights and their hanging by cherry picker; massive support was given by Walsall Housing Group in particular.

We especially need to thank Bloxwich’s energetic organiser Nikki Rolls of the Partnership/Walsall Council, for doing so much to bring back the Spirit of Bloxwich Christmas Past.

MERRY CHRISTMAS, ONE AND ALL – AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR!

The new lights begin in trees opposite the former Grosvenor Cinema on High Street
The new lights begin in trees opposite the former Grosvenor Cinema on High Street
They continue outside St Peter's Roman Catholic Church
They continue outside St Peter’s Roman Catholic Church
Bloxwich Market Place boasts its own modest but attractive lights
Bloxwich Market Place boasts its own modest but attractive lights
A further eye-popping avenue of light begins outside the dear old 'National' school
A further eye-popping avenue of light begins outside the dear old ‘National’ school
The view back along High Street from the Bloxwich Christmas tree in Promenade Gardens is spectacular
The view back along High Street from the Bloxwich Christmas tree in Promenade Gardens is spectacular
The display of ethereal luminescence continues past Bloxwich Park
The display of ethereal luminescence continues past Bloxwich Park
The gem-like spiderwebs of icy light offer a dazzling gauntlet for night-riders
The gem-like spiderwebs of icy light offer a dazzling gauntlet for night-riders
Chlidhood recollections of trips to the 'Blocko Lights' on a trolleybus spring to mind as a double-decker speeds northwards
Chlidhood recollections of trips to the ‘Blocko Lights’ on a trolleybus spring to mind as a double-decker speeds northwards
The display concludes just before the Bell Inn
The display concludes just before the Bell Inn
And Pat Collins' Memorial Clock in the northern Promenade Gardens marks time as it views the spectacle
And Pat Collins’ Memorial Clock in the northern Promenade Gardens marks time as it views the spectacle

For more pictures at higher resolution, see our Flickr album via this link.

It’s Sparkle not Splutter as Christmas in Bloxwich starts with a bang!

The Italian Market adds sparkle to All Saints grounds.

Saturday saw the third annual Sparkle into a Bloxwich Christmas spectacular take over the village centre, and despite the dismal weather in the afternoon, this annual kick-start to the festive season still managed to sparkle instead of splutter!

The event was organised by Bloxwich Business Partnership – local businesses and organisations working with Walsall Council and the Rotary Club of Bloxwich Phoenix, churches and schools to bring together local people for yet another fantastic event for the people of Bloxwich and district.

Numerous charity and craft stalls were showcased in All Saints' grounds.
Numerous charity and craft stalls were showcased in All Saints’ grounds.

Today’s feast of festive fun was billed to take place 11am to 4pm, with a busy and jolly-looking Italian Market and a synthetic Ice Rink open between 9am – 5pm.  It was also planned to showcase Bloxwich’s local talent and history – it certainly did the latter by being centred on the grounds of the picturesque All Saints Church as well as the historic High Street this year!

Walsall Cats Protection volunteers Val Turner and Jacki Chilton do their bit for pussies in peril.
Walsall Cats Protection volunteers Val Turner and Jacki Chilton do their bit for pussies in peril.
National Elf Pat Till of the Sister Dora Friends of Walsall Hospice engages youngsters in Christmassy conversation.
National Elf Pat Till of the Sister Dora Friends of Walsall Hospice engages youngsters in Christmassy conversation.
Heidi Summersby - holding a Bloxwich Lion - had been amazingly busy on her craft stall
Heidi Summersby – holding a Bloxwich Lion – had been amazingly busy on her craft stall.
Tasty treats were all for the taking in the Mamma Mia Italian market.
Tasty treats were all for the taking in the Mamma Mia Italian market.

The former was undoubtedly well-represented too, by talented local school pupils and the young stars of Russon Dance Academy performing at various locations, as well as the Steel Pans Band and the Salvation Army band – though due to being unable to attend before 2pm as a result of work commitments, we were sadly only able to catch up with Steel Pans and some young ladies from the Mirus Academy, who were putting on an energetic performance in a shelter near the church and the ice rink.

The Steel Pans Band strikes up a tune as The Bloxwich Telegraph arrives!
The Steel Pans Band strikes up a tune as The Bloxwich Telegraph arrives!
Talented pupils from the Mirus Academy, Beechdale, with Baljit Dutfield, the Academy's Director of Creative Industries and Partnerships.
Talented pupils from the Mirus Academy, Beechdale, with Baljit Dutfield, the Academy’s Director of Creative Industries and Partnerships.

The lynchpin behind the event was as usual the remarkably energetic Nikki Rolls of Walsall Council, whose efforts on behalf of Bloxwich since re-launching the Business Parnership with local traders and groups a few years ago have been tireless.

Of course she would be the first to say how much help she has had from Bloxwich Rotary, the schools, churches, Bloxwich Library, Council colleagues and other local organisations, as well as hard-working community-minded local councillors such as Shaun and Julie Fitzpatrick, who joined Nikki’s daughter Amber and others as enthusiastic if rather damp event marshals!

Street entertainer Mad Dom pumps up a balloon hat for volunteer event marshal Amber Rolls.
Street entertainer Mad Dom pumps up a balloon hat for volunteer event marshal Amber Rolls.
Bloxwich East Labour councillors Shaun and Julie Fitzpatrick also acted as volunteer marshals.
Bloxwich East Labour councillors Shaun and Julie Fitzpatrick also acted as volunteer marshals.

Nikki told The Bloxwich Telegraph that before the rain rolled in the grounds of the church had been jam-packed with revellers looking for festive fun and bargains, not to mention the ice rink and stalls, which had been equally busy – and she estimated that around a thousand visitors had passed through All Saints’ grounds in the morning – very impressive.  She hopes that the event will be even bigger and better next year – with hopefully better weather to boot!

A moment of festive fun as organiser Nikki Rolls gets a hug from a roller-skating Christmas bauble!
A moment of festive fun as organiser Nikki Rolls gets a hug from a roller-skating Christmas bauble!
Buddy can you spare a dime? Neil Bennett, Steve Antill and Stuart Fisher promote the annual Bloxwich Rotary Santa tour.
Buddy can you spare a dime? Neil Bennett, Steve Antill and Stuart Fisher promote the annual Bloxwich Rotary Santa tour.
Slip-sliding away on the synthetic ice rink!
Slip-sliding away on the synthetic ice rink!
Jeneve Bridal Wear's festive entry in the Best-dressed Shop Window competition.
Jeneve Bridal Wear’s festive entry in the Best-dressed Shop Window competition.

The nature of today’s weather, however, inevitably put a bit of a dampener on activities late in the afternoon, though hardy Bloxwich folk and youngsters were still skating away right till the end.

The Bloxwich Telegraph was only able to cover part of today’s events, but I hope you’ll agree that it was well worth us turning out to witness some of the festive fun, food and foolery later on!  If any of our readers have pictures of events up to 1pm that we could add to this picture feature, we’d be very grateful if you could get in touch!  Please email Stuart Williams: bloxwichtelegraph@gmail.com

MORE PICTURES from this afternoon can be viewed on our Flickr Album.

We will report on the winner of the Christmas shop window competition when the results are available.

For more details of what was scheduled to take place today, please see our previous report.

There is no doubt that events pulled together by Bloxwich Business Partnership have raised the profile of Bloxwich in the borough and beyond, and especially by linking groups together in co-operation have fostered a greater sense of community in Bloxwich.

Sparkle into a Bloxwich Christmas is also a great curtain-raiser for the rest of the festive season, and we can surely look forward to more local events from the churches, the Rotary and other groups.  Watch this space!

Best-ever Sparkle Into A Bloxwich Christmas is coming!

Sparkle Banner.

Now we’re heading on down the slippery (indeed, icy!) slope to Christmas, surely it must be time for a bit of sparkle in Bloxwich?

Yes – as is now traditional in the village, Bloxwich Business Partnership is all set to bring local people and organisations including the Rotary Club of Bloxwich Phoenix, churches and schools together for another fantastic event to kick-start the festive season all along the High Street and beyond!

Back for the third year running, Sparkle Into A Bloxwich Christmas is taking place NEXT SATURDAY 24th November 2012, 11am to 4pm, and aims to showcase all of Bloxwich’s local talent.

Organisers say their plan is to create a greater sense of community in Bloxwich and district by raising the profile of local schools, community groups, churches, and key partners as well as the historical values of Bloxwich within the programme of activities. The event also promotes trade and retail in the village, by bringing in shopping families for a feast of festive fun and entertainment.

ITALIAN MARKET

A surprise addition to this year’s sparkling spectacular will be a taste-tastic three-day Mamma Mia Italian Food Market in the grounds of All Saints Church, Elmore Row, Bloxwich – starting on Thursday 22nd November, 9am – 5pm!

AND ON 24TH NOVEMBER THERE’LL BE…

JINGLING JOLLITY IN THE SHOPS

Activities lined up for the retail sector include:

  • Best Dressed Window Competition for retailers.
  • A Christmas Trail for families to follow.
  • Special Offers from local businesses.
  • A Christmas Market.

‘The Best Dressed Window’ display this year is to be judged by St Giles Walsall Hospice and a teacher from the Mirus Academy. The winner will be notified on the day and with all entries will be notified by letter after the event. The winning displays will be immediately updated on Bloxwich Business Partnership’s Facebook page along with any photo’s taken of the day.

FESTIVE FAMILY FUN

Christmas

And yet more fun-packed festive family activities are set to Ho, ho, ho the High Street and beyond, including:

THE FUN OF THE FAYRES!

Christmas at St John's 27 Nov 2010.

  • A Christmas Fayre organised by St John’s Methodist Church (Victoria Avenue).
  • A Victorian Fayre organised by Parklands Court Nursing Home (Park Road).

PLUS a jam-packed Christmas-themed performance programme from:

  • St Peter’s Primary School.
  • Walsall Academy Choir.
  • The Mirus Academy.
  • Great Wyrley High School.
  • Jubilee Academy Mossley
  • A dance performance from Russon Dance Academy and the Mirus Academy.

There will also be Brass and Steel Band performances, street acts and more – see below.

A CHOIR AND DANCE PROGRAMME

Pupils from Walsall Academy performing on the 'Move' truck in 2010.

The choir and dance performances by local young people will be located at both High Street/Park Road on Walsall Council’s Move Bus and at Asda in a Marquee.  The performance programme for the day is as follows:

Time                Park Road / High Street                  All Saints Church

11.30am          Jubilee Academy Mossley                 Walsall Academy

12.00pm          Walsall Academy                               Jubilee Academy Mossley

12.30pm          Great Wyrley High School                 St Peters Primary

1.00pm            Great Wyrley High School                 Snow White Panto Promotion

1.15pm            St Peters Primary                              Great Wyrley High School

1.45pm            Snow White Panto Promotion            Great Wyrley High School

2.00pm            Russon Dance Academy                    The Mirus Academy Dance Group

2.30pm            The Mirus Academy Choir                  Russon Dance Academy

3.00pm            The Mirus Academy Dance Group     The Mirus Academy Choir

BRASS AND STEEL BANDS AT ST PETER’S

Salvation Army Band.

Located on the steps of St Peters Church the traditional Salvation Army Brass Band will perform outside the Church at 11.30am to 1.30pm, then Steel Pans Band from 1.30pm to 2.30pm

STREET ACTS

This year there will also be several walkabout Christmas acts including 10ft tall Snow Queen and the  Elf, Mad Dom the Stilt-walking Elf, and a Roller-skating Christmas Bauble that will be interacting with visitors and may pop in to see the traders in their shops!

ICE RINK

Children Ice Skating

This year’s first for Bloxwich is a special attraction –  a 12m x 12m ice rink to all visitors to use for free!  The Ice Rink will be open 10am – 5pm.

CHARITY/GROUP CHRISTMAS STALLS AT ALL SAINTS

Snowy All Saints Church, Bloxwich.

Christmas stalls are available for any charity or group raising money for their cause at NO CHARGE and will be located within All Saints Church grounds.  Anyone who is interested in having a stall should please contact Nikki Rolls at Walsall Council on 01922 654324.

ACTIVITIES AT ASDA, BOOKMARK BLOXWICH AND BLOXWICH MARKET

Bloxwich Library

There will also be activities and entertainment planned at Asda and Bookmark Bloxwich Library (where there will be Christmas storytelling)  and at Bloxwich Market including a visit from Father Christmas from 1pm at the Market handing out a free gift to all the children attending. Christmas cakes and festive drinks and a Hog Roast amongst other festive activities are planned for the day.

MORE INFORMATION

For more information about this event contact Nikki Rolls at Walsall Council on 01922 654324.

DOWNLOADS

Sparkle into Bloxwich Christmas 2012 Poster. (PDF)

IT’S CHRISTMAAAS!

The Bloxwich Telegraph is proud to support Sparkle into a Bloxwich Christmas, all those involved – and the people of Bloxwich and district!  See you there!