Birmingham news and blogs Saturday 27 May 2017
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Bardolino Birmingham 

15 May

Yesterday, I had a very nice little lunch with two of my closest friends at Bardolino’s in Birmingham.

Gluten Free Veggie Crisps 

10 May

Photo: Word In Veg Ways I find it’s a dangerous game opening a bag of sharing crisps.

Mountain Berries & Desert Spice 

30 Apr

I absolutely loved Sumayya Usmani’s first book – Summers Under The Tamarind Tree with its introduction to Pakistani food and culture brought to life by stunning imagery, anecdotes, memories and family stories.

New Cole DC Appointed 

23 Apr

We are delighted to announce that following a successful conclusion to the Cole District Commissioner Search Process over the last few months, Liz Rashvand has been appointed as the new District Commissioner for Cole.

Solihull Scouts Receive Queen Scout Award at Windsors Castle 

23 Apr

Alex Buck, Ashley Shadbolt and Luke Shadbolt are being honoured by international adventurer Chief Scout, Bear Grylls at Windsor Castle for gaining their Queen’s Scouts Awards on Sunday 23 th April 2017.

Put St George’s Day on the Calendar 

22 Apr

It is one of my bugbears that St George's Day here in England isn't celebrated with the gusto that it should be.

Buckholt Scout Troop Sleep Rough to Raise Money and Awareness for St Basils 

22 Apr

12 Scouts and 4 leaders from Buckholt Scout Troop took part in the Solihull St Basils Sleep Out 2017, to help raise awareness of homelessness and raise funds to help St Basils provide beds and much more for local homeless people.

Supercharge Breakfast with Manuka Honey 

8 Apr

My BFF Sonia is endeared with the fact I have a 'weekend' breakfast cereal.

Lunch at Leon Restaurant 

4 Apr

Photo: Word In Veg Ways Leon Restaurants.

Just a Coffee…. at Damascena 

26 Mar

Last Sundaywas just one of those lovely Sunday afternoons that flowed from one nice thing to another.

Seasonal Food in February 

9 Feb

So it’s February.

We’re Searching for New District Commissioner 

7 Feb

As Andy and Chris finish their terms as District Commissioners for Blythe and Cole, the process of selecting replacements has begun.

County Night Hike 2017 – Results 

29 Jan

Congratulations to Intrepid Explorers ‘A’ and Nelson Sea Scouts ‘A’ on winning the Walking stick and boot trophies respectively.

Baxters Souper Swap Challenge 

28 Jan

Lunch during the working week cansometimes come andgo without any aplomb, with choices made on autopilot or with only'hobson's choice' from the local shop or fooddelivery van it can be all quite groundhog day.

Help needed for 6 Summits 

23 Jan

Adult Leaders   34th Six Summits Challenge April 29 th to 1 st May 2017  The Six Summits Challenge is a 36 mile, 3 day expedition for Scouts and Explorers.

Ukrainian Christmas Festivals 

20 Jan

January is always verybusy for me, hence I'm only now just sitting down to write.

Mothering Sunday Lunch 

12 Jan

Surprise your Mother this Mothering Sunday with a fabulous 6 course Sunday Lunch that she thoroughly deserves.

Merry Christmas & Happy 2017! 

31 Dec

It's New Year's Eve and I can't believe it is 'that time' of year again! Honestly, where has it gone??! Just thinking about the blogging part of my life, I've enjoyed trying out all the new places opening up in and around Birmingham and checking out ...

Burns Supper 

25 Dec

Robert Burns was born into a farming family at Alloway in Ayrshire, he died in Dumfries at the early age of thirty seven.

Valentines Day 

25 Dec

Treat Your Loved One to a Romantic Valentines Evening Full Name * Address * Telephone * Email Address * Date: * Number of People * Preferred Time Additional Comments or Special Dietary Requirements Treat the special person in your life to a romantic ...

Seasons Greetings at this festive time of year 

22 Dec

Seasons Greetings at this festive time of year 2016 has been another fantastic year for Solihull Scouts: It Saw hundreds of young people receiving their Chief Scout Awards as well as 10 receiving their Queen Scout Award and Duke of Edinburgh Award ...

Cubs100 Promise Party 

21 Dec

Cub Scouts up and down the country celebrated a 100 years of adventure with Cubs 100 Promise Parties – Cubs joined together with thousands of other to renew their promise.

Rise of Social Enterprises 

15 Dec

Having frequently seen Miss Macaroon on the Birmingham food scene over the years, I was really pleased to hearwhen MD Rosie Ginday announced that she was opening a shop in Birmingham's Great Western Arcade .

Food Roots Interview – Joudie Kalla 

14 Dec

After thoroughly enjoying reading and reviewing Joudie Kalla’s cookbook – Palestine On A Plate , I thought it would be interesting to interview Joudie via my Food Roots Interview series to find out about her and her heritage and how it fits in ...

Mr Crumb Stuffing 

5 Dec

I don’t always make stuffing when putting together a Sunday Roast Lunch, but when I do, it is usually a cheap cheerful packet mix that I can make up in minutes (sorry to all food purists, it is very uncouth of me I know…..

Italian Deli Figs 

28 Nov

Regular readers will recall that I reviewed a vegetarian parmesan style cheese earlier in the year from Italian online deli food providers Vorrei .

Review: Boston Tea Party 

15 Nov

  Boston Tea Party .

Six Summits Challenge April 29th-1st May 2017 

7 Nov

Bookings for the Six Summits Challenge will open on the 1st December.

Palestine On A Plate 

6 Nov

Joudie Kalla’s culinary memoir brings to life a part of the world that I have little knowledge about – the area of Palestine.

Review: Baxters Deli Toppers 

4 Nov

Instead of ketchup or hummus, sometimes it is nice to have something different to top your food with, something that will add a different dimension.

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26 May

Posted below is a letter I received toady in relation to a proposal to develop office accommodation on Fore Business Park, Monkspath by IM Properties (this site is between Notcutts Garden Centre and the M42).

Blythe Valley Park – investment in Solihull 

17 May

Planning Application – PL/2017/01205/PPRM relates to the: ‘Erection of five warehouse buildings (Use Class B2/B8 with ancillary B1) with associated internal access roads, car parking, substations, service yards, landscaping and all other details ...

Bogus Callers 

17 May

This is a message sent to me via WMNow.

Interested in Local Policing in Solihull? 

17 May

I have copied this from a message sent to me regarding the IAG’s: Do you think you could offer advice and support to the Police in Solihull? If yes, why not join our Independent Advisory Group where you can help influence local Policing decisions ...

BOGUS CALLERS – Distraction Burglaries 

6 May

I have been notified by West Midlands Police of reports about bogus callers and they have sent useful advice which we could all refresh ourselves with.

Stanbrook Road – parking issues 

5 May

Just to update residents in the area of Stanbrook Road, following a meeting I had with people at Listers Land Rover Dealership, Stratford Road.

Marie Curie – London Marathon 

26 Apr

Whilst down in ‘That There London’ for the Marathon I thought I would try and capture as many images of other Marie Curie runners.

ANDY and the London Marathon 

26 Apr

One of my sons, Andy, ran the London Marathon on Sunday, undertaking the challenge on behalf Marie Curie.

Caroline Spelman to seek re-election in snap General Election on 8th June 

18 Apr

Caroline Spelman to seek re-election in snap General Election on 8th June Tue, 18/04/2017 - 13:15 Tuesday, 18 April, 2017 Earlier today the Prime Minister, Theresa May, advised that she would seek Parliament’s permission to hold a snap General ...

Wild flower hedgerows in Solihull 

13 Apr

Land changes out of the blue is the headline for the council press release, which reads; Eagle-eyed residents who have seen some areas of land in Solihull turn blue recently may be wondering why.


12 Apr

At yesterday Full Council meeting we received a presentation from Dave Martin, Independent Chair of Solihull Safeguarding Adults Board (SSAB) and Sue Walton – SSAB Business Manager.

HEART AND SOUL – Magazine from Heart of England NHS 

11 Apr

Please find here the link to the Spring 2017 edition of this useful magazine: Hamp;S_spring_2017 This edition has information about baby Boxes, Parkinson’s, Cardiac study and much more.

Planning Application Land At 146-150 And To Rear Of 152-162 Tilehouse Lane Tidbury Green Solihull 

10 Apr

Planning application PL/2017/00477/PPOL refers to ‘ Outline planning application for the redevelopment of existing haulage yard and residential properties, for residential development of up to 48 dwellings including the means of access, with all ...

Planning Application – Blythe Valley Park 

5 Apr

What I consider a welcome planning application is reference number                     PL/2017/00627/PPRM which relates to the: Erection of an office building (Use Class B1(a)) with associated internal access road, car parking, ...

Appeal re HGV’s on Rumbush Farm dismissed 

4 Apr

An extremely pleasing result for residents of Tidbury Green, especially those living on Rumbush Lane and Norton Lane.

Multi Agency Vehicle Operations, Solihull 

4 Apr

I have received this message from Solihull Police and can share this good news more widely.

Communities under threat after two mayoral candidates back second runway at Birmingham Airport 

27 Mar

Communities under threat after two mayoral candidates back second runway at Birmingham Airport Mon, 27/03/2017 - 10:50 Monday, 27 March, 2017 Dame Caroline Spelman, MP for Meriden has expressed her disappointment after two of the candidates in the ...

Andy Street Conservative Mayoral Candidate for the West Midlands 

16 Mar

Andy Street Conservative Mayoral Candidate for the West Midlands Thu, 16/03/2017 - 12:06 Thursday, 16 March, 2017 Andy Street - Conservative Mayoral Candidate for the West Midlands Andy Street has given up his job running John Lewis to stand as ...

Solihull Borough still under threat from ‘divisive’ boundary changes 

16 Mar

Solihull Borough still under threat from ‘divisive’ boundary changes Thu, 16/03/2017 - 11:11 Thursday, 16 March, 2017 The Rt Hon Dame Caroline Spelman, MP for the Meriden constituency is urging residents of Solihull Borough to have a say in the ...


14 Mar

Click to view slideshow.

Monkspath Community Litter Pick 

14 Mar

A local resident, Bob Summers, suggested we do this in our local park, Hillfield Local Nature Reserve and together with the Olton Library Litter Pickers/Love Solihull Team (SMBC) we got together yesterday afternoon.

Spotlight on GP Appointments 

13 Mar

Fed up with hearing that GP appointments are hard to come by? Come to a public meeting about the situation in Solihull.

The state of adult social care funding 

12 Mar

Just a few months old but this report from the Local Government Association can be considered a detailed and accurate report about the issue.


12 Mar

I have been a governor at schools in Solihull for over 25 years (Monkspath and the Federated Special Schools of Forest Oak and Merstone).

Solihull Sleep Out – St Basils 

10 Mar

I will be taking part in the Solihull Sleep out on behalf of St Basils this evening and wish to make a few points about the issue in Solihull.


9 Mar

Beat Surgeries have returned and here are the dates, time and venues of surgeries in or near to Blythe ward: March Tuesday 14 th – Dickens Heath Parish Office 1000 x 1100 Wednesday 15 th – Notcutts Garden Centre 1100 x 1300 Friday 24th – ...

Housing Provision for Disabled in Solihull 

5 Mar

A question posed at Full Council to me this week related to this issue and the timing allows me to expand on the issue in a more general way to help inform residents of the borough Within the draft local plan review the Council is committed to ...


2 Mar

My original post regarding the budget was dated 22 February 2017 and can be read here: https://cllrkenhawkins.

How can I improve my engagement with you? 

23 Feb

Even being a prolific user of Twitter, Facebook and having my own website to engage with residents and the wider community I do frequently reflect as to how effective these communications are and whether I don’t do enough to engage with those who ...


23 Feb

Solihull residents are being warned not to use ‘ cowboy builders’ or rogue traders to repair or clean up after any damage caused by storm Doris.

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