Category Archives: Little Bloxwich

Little Bloxwich garden opens for charity this Sunday

Julie and John Quinn on their 'bridge over troubled waters' in the Small but Beautiful garden
Julie and John Quinn on their ‘bridge over troubled waters’ in the Small but Beautiful garden

One of the prettiest private gardens in Bloxwich – and beyond – is all set to open its gate to the public this Sunday, 28 June, endorsed by the highly-regarded National Gardens Scheme.

Dubbed ‘Small but Beautiful’ by owners and gardeners John and Julie Quinn, their Japanese-themed back garden, just 32ft square but packed with glorious plants, shrubs and trees, certainly fits the bill.

Just one of many vistas in this tiny patch of heaven...
Just one of many vistas in this tiny patch of heaven…

John is a self-employed professional gardener, and Julie works in a bank, but it’s easy to see that their hearts are really in their other work – building a haven of peace and tranquility at the back of their home, 6 Fishley Close, Little Bloxwich, WS3 3QA.

Our editor had a preview of the glorious garden, which will open to the public between 10am – 5pm, and the photographs he took, shown here, give just a taste of the multitude of many-layered vistas which have been masterfully created by the hard work of John and Julie.  It’s a wonderful inspiration to the great majority of us who only have a little patch of green to work with!

CLOSE UP: This exquisite flower entices the eye to contemplate the bridge beyond
CLOSE UP: This exquisite flower entices the eye to contemplate the bridge beyond

The garden also includes a lovely water feature and a typically Japanese-style bridge beyond, giving depth to the whole arrangement.  There are also a number of non-Japanese style aspects to the garden nearer to the house.

The birds love the garden too!
The birds love the garden too!

This is not the first time that the garden has been open to the public for such charity events, as it has been a total of 14 times over the years, raising a total of around £12,000. Previous events have raised cash for Marie Curie Cancer Care and Macmillan Cancer Support – and the garden even sported its own lights in 2009 after Walsall Illuminations closed down!

Part of the garden, illuminated in October 2009 - click on picture to see the 2009 album on Flickr
Part of the garden, illuminated in October 2009 – click on picture to see the 2009 album on Flickr

This year, the Small but Beautiful garden has featured on Midlands Today, on BBC Radio WM, in a two-page spread in Gardening News, and has been recognised by The Daily Telegraph as one of the top fifty small gardens to visit in the country.

Hidden visions are numerous, and worth seeking out...
Hidden visions are numerous, and worth seeking out…
CHARITY FUNDRAISER

Visitors are welcome on Sunday, and the modest fee for admission is £3,  with children free.  Donations in general are also welcome; funds raised by the event will be shared between the Alzheimer’s Society and the Parkinson’s Society, as well as Pelsall Care Home. Home made cakes and drinks will be on sale throughout the day.

The Quinns are also inviting any gardeners who would like to help contribute to the charities to donate in kind, by bringing along any spare plants or garden items to be sold on the day.

ACCESS

Anyone with special access needs, or thinking of bringing a group, should contact the Quinns beforehand, on 07846 496715.

PARKING

They also recommend that visitors park in nearby Fishley Lane, as Fishley Close is quite small and could easily become blocked.

Don’t miss this little gem in Little Bloxwich, whatever the weather this Sunday – it’s a real treat!

Full of small and intimate perspectives, the garden is a vision in subtle colours
Full of small and intimate perspectives, the garden is a vision in subtle colours

 

Pictures (c) by Stuart Williams – click to enlarge

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Bloxwich Remembers – for the fallen

The Remembrance Sunday service at Bloxwich War Memorial 2012 (click for full panoramic image)
The Remembrance Sunday service at Bloxwich War Memorial 2012 (click for full panoramic image)

In Bloxwich today, Remembrance Sunday combined with Armistice Day, and hundreds of residents of Bloxwich, Blakenall Heath and Leamore gathered in glorious but decidedly chilly November sunshine for the annual observation of the nation’s traditional act of remembrance and to see the village’s traditional parade to honour fallen UK servicemen and women of all wars and conflicts, especially the Great War and the Second World War.

Participants in the parade assembled outside the former Bull’s Head pub in Park Road and, the road having been closed by police, marched off at 10.20am, led by the Walsall Coronets band, along High Street to the War Memorial on the corner of High Street and Elmore Green Road where large crowds of local folk were gathered for a service of Remembrance around 10.40am.

Veterans and their representatives arrive at Bloxwich War Memorial.
Veterans and their representatives arrive at Bloxwich War Memorial.

Local veterans and cadets marched proudly behind the standards of the Royal British Legion and other ex-services organisations, and were followed by youth groups including Bloxwich Army Cadets, Scouts, Guides and Brownies, representatives of local organisations, and local councillors.

Reading the Bloxwich, Blakenall Heath and Leamore Roll of Honour.
Reading the Bloxwich, Blakenall Heath and Leamore Roll of Honour.

The people of Bloxwich and district were welcomed by Revd. Phil Hoar of St. John’s Methodist Church, who together with the Revd. Monica Arnold, Curate of All Saints Church and Licensed Reader Margaret Wootton (also of All Saints) read out the Bloxwich and district Roll of Honour for the Great War and the Second World War.

We Will Remember Them...
We Will Remember Them…

Preceded by bells from All Saints Church, The Last Post was played to herald the traditional two minutes silence at 11am, with standards lowered by both veterans and youth groups (though sadly Drum Sergeant Alf Cooper, Staffordshire Regiment (retired) was unable to attend to sound the bugle in person this year, due to ill health).  Mr Witton of the Royal Naval Association read the traditional Ode of Remembrance from ‘For the Fallen’ by Laurence Binyon.

Mr Witton from the Bloxwich Branch of the Royal Naval Association reads from 'For the Fallen'.
Mr Witton from the Bloxwich Branch of the Royal Naval Association reads from ‘For the Fallen’.

Revd Phil Hoar subsequently led those assembled in prayer, readings and hymns to both honour the fallen and to pray for future peace, including a particularly poignant reading about the examples set in 2009 by a young soldier in Afghanistan and by the late Harry Patch, ‘the last fighting Tommy’.

Jassica Castillo-Burley leads the singing of the National Anthem.
Jassica Castillo-Burley leads the singing of the National Anthem.

The service concluded with the National Anthem with singing led by All Saints’ Church Youth Choir leader Jassica Castillo-Burley and the laying of wreaths by local dignitaries, Mr Witton laying the first wreath, followed by Roy Aldridge of SSAFA Forces Help West Midlands North Branch (Walsall District)  then Bloxwich councilors and representatives of the armed and civilian services and other organisations.  Individuals, including many youngsters, then proudly placed small crosses and poppies for fallen relatives and friends.

The laying of wreaths.
The laying of wreaths.

At the final conclusion of ceremonies, the parade returned smartly along High Street to its point of origin, the Bull’s Head, before breaking up for another year.

Army Cadets step out smartly on the return parade.
Army Cadets step out smartly on the return parade.
The Rotary Club of Bloxwich Phoenix representatives.
The Rotary Club of Bloxwich Phoenix representatives.
Bloxwich Scouts did their duty proudly on parade, as did the Guides, Cubs, Brownies etc.
Bloxwich Scouts did their duty proudly on parade, as did the Guides, Cubs, Brownies etc.

This year’s poignant, reflective but uplifting event was again very well supported, with an excellent turnout, and onlookers were once again particularly impressed by the large number of young people who proudly joined the veterans in the parade, notably smartly turned-out army cadets and other youth groups carrying flags including Bloxwich Scouts, Cubs, Brownies and Guides amongst them.

Other local groups were represented, including the Royal British Legion, Rotary Club of Bloxwich Phoenix, Bloxwich Fire Station, Bloxwich Police and more.

'In Flanders fields the poppies blow, Between the crosses, row on row...'
‘In Flanders fields the poppies blow, Between the crosses, row on row…’

All photographs by Stuart Williams.

Many more photographs were taken of this event than it is possible to show here.

A FREE FLICKR ALBUM of photographs of Remembrance Sunday 2012 in Bloxwich – including the parades to and from the memorial and many more pictures not shown here – is presented by The Bloxwich Telegraph via the following link for download as personal souvenirs of the occasion and for any non-commercial use by groups and organisations pictured:  BLOXWICH REMEMBERS 2012

See also REMEMBERING HAROLD PARRY.

Bloxwich War Memorial - a village remembers...
Bloxwich War Memorial – a village remembers…

Conman preying on young women hunted by police: appeal

Police Line

Police are hunting a man who failed to appear before the courts for crimes committed in the Black Country.

Alex McEvoy, 26, of no fixed abode, pleaded guilty at Walsall Magistrates Court last month to a theft which took place at an address on Mill Lane in Wednesfield.

Back in October last year, McEvoy stole cash and gold chains from a 24-year-old woman who he had befriended over a period of time. The chains, which were pawned, had belonged to the woman’s dead grandmother.

Having admitted the offence, he was released by the courts on bail pending sentencing.

LITTLE BLOXWICH OFFENCE

While on court bail, a similar offence took place in which a 23-year-old woman from Stoney Lane, Little Bloxwich befriended McEvoy and had her kindness re-paid by having her debit card stolen and a substantial quantity of cash stolen.

McEvoy was named as the offender but failed to appear before Walsall Magistrates Court on 8 August to face charges. In his absence, magistrate’s found him guilty and issued a warrant for his immediate arrest.

Despite the best efforts of local officers, Alex McEvoy who has connections across the West Midlands and Staffordshire, has so far evaded officers.

APPEAL

Detective Constable Jo Myatt-Jones, from Walsall police station, said:

“We are appealing to anyone who knows the whereabouts of Alex McEvoy to contact us.

“The courts have found that man chooses his victims based on their vulnerability and ingratiates himself with them and their family. He becomes involved in their lives, gaining their trust and then uses this to his advantage by betraying them and stealing from them.

“He has used many guises to meet women including pretending to be a security guard.

“We have released his picture in a bid to trace him and to try to prevent him committing any further offences. He may be operating under an alias and we are urging anyone who may recognise him or can tell us where he is to get in touch.”

Anyone with information which may aid DC Myatt-Jones should call West Midlands Police on 101. Alternatively information can be given anonymously by contacting the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Former Bloxwich North neighbourhood office to be demolished

Former Bloxwich North Neighbourhood Office
Former Bloxwich North Neighbourhood Office

A former neighbourhood office in Bloxwich is to be demolished with plans to transform the land into a car park to ease parking problems in the surrounding area.

Bloxwich North Neighbourhood Community Office(NCO),Buxton Road,closed on 24 June 2011 and  is one of three former neighbourhood offices set to be demolished after being declared surplus to requirements by Walsall Council.The others are Proffitt Street, Birchills, and Tantarra Street, Chuckery.

Buxton Road NCO was latterly occupied by staff from Walsall Council’s social care team who have relocated to the Allens Centre in Willenhall.

Proposals are to turn it into a 14 space car park to ease parking problems in Bakewell Close particularly during school drop off and collection times and to benefit visitors to the adjoining shops. This is subject to planning permission and funding to carry out the work being secured.

Work will be carried out by contractors Tarmac who are due to move on to the Buxton Road site on Monday 24 October. The work is expected to be completed in around five days and following demolition the site will be secured to prevent unauthorised access.

Councillor Adrian Andrew, Walsall Council deputy leader and cabinet member for regeneration, said: “We have known about the need for parking for a long time. The opportunity has now arisen for us to turn the former neighbourhood office into a car park which has always been a long term plan of the council.”

“This building only became empty a few weeks ago but already we have been moving quickly to sort out the future of this site.”

The former Proffitt Street neighbourhood office has already been demolished.