Category Archives: Local Issues Page

DGYxbH7XcAATgKo Police Knife Crime poster

A day In the Life of Your Councillors – Monday It’s a Sizzling Swelterer Again!

Morning comes around and the first calls are “ Have you seen the smashed bus shelters in Wednesfield/”.  Isn’t it darn well depressing to receive the bad news so early at the start of a week!

The fact that vandals are running riot on the streets of Wednesfield is bad enough, but in the week that we are expecting the Heart Of England in Bloom Inspectors – to learn of their activity has its own live traumas.

Like the rest of the Wednesfield in Bloom volunteers, this time in the cycle gets you so darn focused on Wednesfield In Bloom, it kind of blanks out everything else.

Mary and I discussed the news and then I had to attend a City Council meeting at the Civic centre. I was there a couple of hours, and then had to visit the New Cross Hospital, Respiratory Unit. By mid afternoon I was out and in Sainsburys! You always meet people you know in Sainsburys.

I know that the report by the Police regarding knife crime at Bentley Bridge and at Heath Town has unnerved some of you because you have been speaking to Mary and me about it.

But as a way of re-assuring you can I remind you that  – I wrote to West Midlands police towards the end of 2017, about knife crime in Wednesfield North. They reassured me with these facts . There had only been 7 reported knife crimes in Wednesfield North from January 2014 through to September 2017. Less than 2 offences a year.

Now what I shall do is contact the Police again and see if there has been any rise in concern about knife crime here in Wednesfield North in the last 9 months.

Like the rest of you –  I have been enjoying the World Cup and tonight.  I was an arm chair fan, and watched the footie! That ended Monday very nicely… No meetings, no activities just chilling watching the footie!

VikingIMG_0780

A Day In The Life of Your Councillors – Sunday is Canada Day!

Today Sunday 1st July 2018 -Mary and I had one of those days today!

It was of course Canada Day, the day Canada received its Independence from Britain. So Canadians celebrate the day in Canada and wherever Canadians gather. I shot off happy Canada Day messages to friends and family.

We also snatched a few hours of family time, and Mary and I went and played Golf with Mary’s brothers! We won’t go into the scores…but I must admit we had a great time. The weather is still in scorcio form here in Wednesfield.

Sun and Blue skies and 29 degree heat! Phew!

But our minds are never too far away from watering the flowers that are part of the Wednesfield in Bloom competition. In fact tonight on Ashmore Park – Mary & I watered the three flower beds on the Ashmore Park Parade.

We also planted some extra flowers to make the beds a little more attractive.

Whist playing golf I took a phone call from Wednesfield Police who told me that the CCTV images picked up a man taking the 25 plants that were nicked from the Ashmore Park flower beds. They are investigating the matter, so if you thought the cctv cameras on the shopping parade didn’t work think again.

Whilst on crime issues, you will be aware of the attacks on bus shelters in Peacock ave and Lichfield road. I have been following these attacks up. I can tell you now that this vandalism is immensely expensive.

I have been in touch with Transport for West Midlands and they have told me that this is what the true situation is….Transport for West Midlands have told me

“ from monitoring and our damage reports and repair orders. We’ve noticed an increase of damage along Lichfield rd and are monitoring this closely with our colleagues from the Safer Travel Police Team. – There have been 370 incidents of vandalism at 178 Shelters in Wolverhampton since 1 January 2016. -The cost to clean, make safe, repair or replace glazing for these incidents comes to £56,550. – There have been 63 panels damaged at 27 shelters on the 59 bus corridor since 1 January 2016. -The cost incurred on this corridor is £9,450. TfWM provide weekly proactive cleaning and auditing of all shelters within the West Midlands. They also offer a 24/7 fault reporting service for their customers and partners to inform TfWM s of cleaning or damage issues by using the ‘Fix it’ service.  Information about using ‘Fix it’ is displayed at every stop and shelter. They tell me that they have a reactive maintenance team who provide daytime and out of hours service to quickly respond to issues.”

I don’t know what you think but I think that figures quoted are horrendous. So if anyone does see or who find out who these vandals are please report the, Not only are they destroying our environment and this activity is so costly to every single person who pays Counciltax.

Finally before the light went totally Mary and I drove to Bentley Bridge to have a look at the work the scouts had done with the old boat Mary and I had sourced for Wednesfield in Bloom….It was worth it! You Wednesfield Scouts have done a cracking job! We salute you!

And another day slips by!

Canada-day

Happy Canada Day – Canadians Everywhere!

Today is Canada Day – Wolverhampton has a long association with Canada.

Through family ties, through trade and commerce, through vacation and holidays, food and drink! Who doesn’t like maple Syrup on their pancakes????!!! So today I wish all Canadians living here in Wednesfield or in Wolverhampton, The Black Country or back in their native Canada a very great Canada Day!

Viking War Boat with a modern Wednesfield twist!36397010_1943141562417682_6230159120104685568_n

A Day In The Life Of Your Councillors – Saturday Yet Another Scorcher!

A Day In The Life Of Your Councillors!!

 

Saturday another scorcher again..and so the great weather continues. But this time next Saturday the Inspectors will have been to Wednesfield and will have inspected the Wednesfield in Bloom entry in to the Heart of England in Bloom competition. We are again chasing the Gold Award to go with the Silver Award in 2016, the Gold Award in 2017! We are not greedy but the Wednesfield in Bloom team are very enthusiastic..

We will not know the results of that inspection until September.

But what I can tell you is that the volunteers who have been working on this project this year have been truly fantastic. The place has been awash with energy, as people have been transforming our Village with flowers, giving it a great tidy up, and just feeling good about the location they live and work in!

Saturday was an extra level of endeavour. Mary and I added our flower beds with more flowers, we also made a quick visit to the Ashmore Park beds too. I spent five hours in Wednesfield, before nipping off and getting my I –Pad fixed by a Wednesfield Business, and also getting my hair cut- again by a Wednesfield business.

I was blown away with how the scouts had transformed the old boat that Mary and I procured from Pendeford Mill into the most brilliant Viking War Galley with a modern twist! This additional Wednesfield in Bloom trick adds the Village history into the Wednesfield in Bloom bid…if you haven’t seen it live yet – visit the boat which is located next to the canal at Bentley Bridge….

Thanks goes to Mark Welsby from Land Securities that own the Bentley Bridge Leisure Park for giving the permissions and sponsoring the In Bloom activities yet again, by taking part in the great attempt to turn Wednesfield from ‘Grey to Green’!

Whilst doing the Wednesfield in Bloom activities, both Mary and I continued to be accessible to our constituents. You wouldn’t believe the case work we picked up on Saturday…!

 

Ashmore In BloomIMG_1362

Friday – Another Great Weather Day In Wednesfield!

Friday was yet again another great day in Wednesfield for the weather!

Wall to wall Sun and high temperatures, certainly not going to bemoan the weather.

But it makes it hard for all our great volunteers that are working like Trojans to ensure we get a great result when the Inspectors come to look at the results of the 2018 Wednesfield in Bloom actions.

Keeping the flowers and the plants has been a major headache as the water has to be carried to all the flower beds. The Severn Trent Water restrictions will have an impact over the last week. No hosepipes will hit hard!

Yesterday Mary and I watered the flower beds in the Village that we adopted when we decided in 2016 to enter the Heart of England in Bloom competition. I did a bit of weeding and planted a few more Marigolds.

We also tended the three flower beds outside the Ashmore Park Shopping Parade last night, watered them before we attended the Wednesfield North Labour Party Meeting at The Hub at 6.00pm.

The Ashmore Park beds look good, and we were both complemented by residents, as the flowers are indeed very much welcomed and do brighten the shopping parade. Thinking caps on folks for next year’s entry for Heart of England in Bloom competition?!

Yesterday I met with Wolverhampton Homes at their Wednesfield Offices to speak with them about housing casework I had. The Officers were very helpful.

On Wednesday/Thursday the Wolverhampton Homes offices in the Village were burgled causing a mess and a closure of the offices to the public, whilst a clean up took place. I just hate it when crime strikes.

Just to update you.

I am now in contact with Wolverhampton Homes officials regarding the idea I have floated to turn a disused piece of land in Millbank street into allotments. Yesterday I continued to work on this project. 

Finally here is ‘a did you know’ item?

Did you know that there is a strong likelihood that in every purse or trouser pocket that contains ‘change’ there will be a link with our great Village of Wednesfield?

Did you know that nearly all the 1p 2p 5p and 10p coins now in circulation in the UK are processed in Wednesfield by steel made in Port Talbot.

Just another reason to be proud of Wednesfield, and proud of the people that work here making our City of Wolverhampton the unique place it is!

 

High Street

Vanishing Cash Machines….

Rural communities worst hit by vanishing ATMs
Consumer group Which? has warned that more than 300 cash machines are being removed each month from Britain’s high streets, with rural communities the worst hit.

The issue is linked with the wider break-up of Britain’s banking system that has also seen hundreds of community branches closed. The ATM Industry Association says as many as 25,000 to 30,000 cash machines are likely to disappear from the UK’s current network of 55,000 free-to-use ATMs over the next few years. Which? and the Federation of Small Businesses have launched a campaign which urges the Payment Systems Regulator to conduct an urgent review to fully evaluate how the changes will affect communities and consumers.

Councillor Phil Bateman said “Luckily here in Wednesfield we still have access to two local Banks. This is an important facility for our High Street, as the Cash Machines they have on their sites generate footfall, and that is important to the other small independent traders, and the market.”

IMG_7608 Corpus Christi

Thursday 28th June 2018 – The Sun is still scorching Wednesfield!

Thursday 28th June 2018 – The Sun is still scorching Wednesfield!

I had an appointment at Corpus Christi School on Thursday, and I met the new Executive Head of the school Miss Craig. Corpus Christi School is part of the Pope John XXIII Catholic Multi Academy Company, a Private Company Limited by Guarantee with Charitable Status.

I had arranged to attend the school following a change of Head, and the poor results from their latest Ofsted Inspection. Ofsted gave the school an Inadequate result.

However the changes are being made at double quick time. The new Executive Head Miss Craig is a person with great energy, and is hugely impressive. I had a tour of the school, the children were hard at work, and they looked a very happy bunch.

I have no doubt that the Corpus Christi School will be in a very different position next time Ofsted Inspect the school. They are expecting a new Head of School to be in situation soon, which will again strengthen the teaching staff.

My next visit was to The Hub at Ashmore Park, where I had conversations with the great volunteers that run The Hub.

It was the Scrutiny Annual Work Planning Event at the Civic Centre in the late afternoon, Mary and I attended this event.

It was primarily for outlining where the City Scrutiny should go next!

We left the Civic about 6.15 just in time to visit relatives and watch the England v Belgium World cup game where England lost 1-0. But we are still in the next round and up against Columbia! This Summer is still exciting!

Finally here are the dates and times of the Police and Community Meetings here in Wednesfield –

Friday 20th July 10:00 am Ashmore Park Hub

Thursday 6th  September 6:30 pm Ashmore Park Hub

Friday 23 November 10:00 am Wednesfield library

Monday 28th January 6:30  pm  Ashmore Park Hub

Friday 29th march 10:00 am  Wednesfield library

Taking a look at the former Elephant Park site in Millbank street.

Wednesday Was All About Wednesfield North Ward!

Well Wednesday (27June18) was again a very interesting day the sun was high in the sky and so was the temperature! Every morning the first thing to think of is Wednesfield in Bloom and the ‘do the plants need watering’!

In the morning I attended with Mary, the Slimming World class held at St Albans, no loss this week but no gains either. So all in all a good start to the day. There were about 10 constituents in the extended class, and it is always a great start to the day to have a gossip with them about life in the Ward!

Following the Slimming World event. Mary and I visited the Hub at Ashmore Park, had a few hello’s to make. Glad to see Ann and Derek there, both of them haven’t been in good health over the last few weeks. We had a cup of tea and a natter with friends and again generally put the World to rights.

Telephone calls with the Head Teacher at Ashmore Park Nursery about the impending Full Governors meeting, and some reading relating to the Scrutiny Committee I am chairing relating to the flooding that took place on the 29th May here in Wolverhampton was next on the Agenda.

In the Afternoon I had a meeting with Cllr Greg Brackenridge and City Officials in the Civic Centre about some work taking place in the City Council about Wednesfield’s Action Plan. It was a good meeting as we look to see the Action Plan develop over the next few months. Wednesfield North & Wednesfield South Councillors are working together on a range of Local Initiatives that affect Wednesfield.

Later In the day I learned of the death of a former chum, Micky Minogue a huge character in Wednesfield, larger than life and always a great laugh. RIP Mick.

Late las night I also had cause to phone the Police because of some marauding youngsters coming down Broad Lane North running behind cars on drives, shouting and throwing bottles. Not pleasant and very dangerous.

Finally I have also taken the idea of turning the former Elephant Park in Millbank Street in to allotments a step further, following the sympathetic response the idea got after I raised the proposal on my Facebook site. I have requested a meeting with Officials of Wolverhampton Homes. I will keep you informed as the idea is kicked around…..!

IMG_5708 City Council

New Cricket Pitch for Wednesfield!

Work underway to create new artificial cricket wickets

Released: Tuesday 26 June, 2018

Work is now underway to install artificial cricket wickets in six parks and green spaces in Wolverhampton.

The City of Wolverhampton Council is working with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) to install seven new wickets, with work on the first six – at East Park, Claregate Playing Fields, Fowlers Park, Newbridge Playing Fields, King George V Playing Fields and Goodyear’s Park – taking place this week.

The wickets will be available for use in the next couple of weeks, while a seventh wicket, at Ward Street in Bilston, will be installed at a later date.

At the same time, the council and the ECB are developing a new sports facility at Peace Green, Dunstall Road, which will include three all-weather cricket training nets and a basketball area. Initial works are underway, with the pitches due to be laid later this year.

The new cricket facilities will be free to use and will compliment a range of other free facilities around the City, including tennis courts and outdoor gyms, and the new £3m sports development at Barnhurst Lane, Pendeford, which opened in 2015 and offers nine football pitches and a multi-use track. Meanwhile, work is also underway to improve the changing facilities at Newbridge Playing Fields and to create new changing rooms at Barnhurst Lane.

Councillor Hazel Malcolm, the City of Wolverhampton Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: “We are delighted to be working with the England and Wales Cricket Board to deliver a range of new cricket facilities in Wolverhampton which will further increase opportunities for local residents to get active.

“This is another big investment in sport in our City, and these high-quality facilities will have a major role to play in improving the health and well-being of the people of Wolverhampton.”

Cabinet Member for City Environment, Councillor Steve Evans, added: “We will regularly inspect these new facilities in our parks and green spaces to ensure they are maintained to the highest standards.”

ENDS

Notes to editors:

1/ For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact Paul Brown, Communications Advisor, on 01902 555497 or email paul.brown@wolverhampton.gov.uk.

photoMarket View

Wednesfield Action Plan

Wolverhampton City Council produced this action plan for Wednesfield, which is still being worked on after pressure from City Councillors last year. The plan is still a live document. But with the interest that is taking place in the Wednesfield economy, I thought it appropriate to publish on my web site the document that is acting as the base for the work taking place now within the City Council.

This report is a PUBLIC [NOT PROTECTIVELY MARKED]DOCUMENT

Stronger City Economy

Scrutiny

21 November 2017

Report title Wednesfield – Local Economic Development and Growth

Corporate Plan outcome An environment where new and existing businesses thrive

Wards affected Wednesfield North; Wednesfield South;

Accountable Director Keren Jones, Service Director, City Economy

Originating service

Heather Clark,

Julia Cleary

Service Development Manager, Systems

and Scrutiny Manager

Tel Tel: 01902 555614, Tel: 01902 555046

Accountable employee

Email heather.clark2@wolverhampton.gov.uk,

julia.cleary@wolverhampton.gov.uk

Report to be/has been

considered by

Recommendation(s) for action or decision:

The Stronger City Economy Scrutiny Panel is asked to consider how can the Council help to

support the development and strengthening of the local economy in Wednesfield?

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1.0 Purpose

1.1 To provide an overview of the local economy in Wednesfield and ask the Stronger City

Economy Scrutiny Panel and witnesses to consider how the Council can help to support

the development and strengthening of the local economy in Wednesfield:

What is the vision for Wednesfield?

How can the Council work best in collaboration with partners and what information do Councillors hold to help with this process?

What do the witnesses invited, who work in partnership with the Council, believe can

be done to improve collaborative working?

How can the Council’s existing approach help with external partners plans and what

is missing to achieve the vision for Wednesfield?

2.0 Background – local economic development

2.1 Local Economic Development (LED) is an approach towards economic development

which allows and encourages local people to work together to achieve sustainable

economic growth and development thereby bringing economic benefits and improved

quality of life for all residents in a local municipal area.

2.2 The Centre for Local Economic Strategy (CLES) resilience model examined the

importance of all parts of the economy: the social; commercial; and public economies to

ensure an economy is resilient to external forces or change. The commercial economy is

often seen as the priority for economic development, but the resilience model

demonstrates that the public sector can have considerable influence on a locality through

procurement spend, planning and employment opportunities. Likewise, the social

economy does not regularly feature in economic development strategies but plays a

crucial role in providing the foundations for any healthy and effective economy both

directly through local employment, local supply chains, volunteering and social

enterprise, but also indirectly through development of social capital and promotion of civil

engagement and participative democracy.

2.3 Wednesfield is made up of two wards Wednesfield South and Wednesfield North. Both

wards have a population of 22,646 (census 2011). Outlined below are the key statistics

for Wednesfield. Economically active residents are those residents who are employed or

actively seeking employment. Economically inactive residents are not available for work

and include retired people, students, those looking after home or family and residents

who are long-term sick or disabled. Unemployed residents are those without a job but

who are available for work.

Economically Active: 75.9% of Wednesfield South population are economically

active, higher than Wolverhampton but lower than England and Wales.

Unemployment is also lower than Wolverhampton but higher than England and

Wales.

77.2% of Wednesfield North population are economically active above both

Wolverhampton and England and Wales. See Graph 1 Appendix 1. Unemployment

is also lower than Wolverhampton but higher than England and Wales.

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Economically Inactive: 24.1% of Wednesfield South population are economically

inactive, lower than Wolverhampton but higher than England and Wales.

Wednesfield South has a lower proportion of students but higher proportion of longterm

sick or disabled. 22.8% of Wednesfield North’s population are economically

inactive, lower than Wolverhampton and England and Wales. See Graph 2 Appendix

1. Wednesfield North has a lower proportion of students but higher proportion of

long-term sick or disabled.

In employment: Wednesfield has 9441 residents in employment, 943 of which are

self-employed. Wednesfield South has a higher proportion of residents in full time

employment than both Wolverhampton and England and Wales but a lower

proportion in part-time employment. In contrast, Wednesfield North has a lower

proportion of residents in full time employment than both Wolverhampton and

England and Wales but a higher proportion in part-time employment. See Graph 3

Appendix 1.

Employment tends to be concentrated in lower level occupations: the highest

proportion of Wednesfield South residents are in elementary occupations (15.6%)

followed by skilled trades at 14.1% and administrative & secretarial at 12.9%. These

proportions are higher than for Wolverhampton and England and Wales. Wednesfield

North has the highest proportion of residents working in skilled trades at 15.2%

followed by elementary occupations at 14.7% and administrative & secretarial at

12.5%.

Educational: Wednesfield High School is a specialist engineering academy and hub

school for Jaguar Landover through Business in the Community.

Low skills profile: Wednesfield South and North have a relatively low skills profile

with 24% and 23.8% respectively having no qualifications above Wolverhampton

(22.1%) and England and Wales (15%) and only 16.4% and 15.6% respectively

having Level 4 qualifications below Wolverhampton (21.7%) and England and Wales

(29.7%).

Claimant count in Wednesfield South and North at 3.4% and 3.1% respectively is

less than Wolverhampton and Black Country average (4.2%) but above GB average

(1.9%)

(Source: NOMIS 2011 ward labour market profile)

Sources of employment: Health is a very important employer in Wednesfield North

employing 47.8% of employees whereas in Wednesfield South, manufacturing is the

most important source of employment employing 20% of employees, followed by

retail at 14.6% and wholesale at 10.2%

Sector strengths: Wednesfield has 490 businesses, the majority (360) of which are

micro businesses (0-9) with the largest number of businesses in retail (55) followed

by construction (45), business and administration (45) and manufacturing (40).

Wednesfield has 110 small businesses (10-49), majority of which are manufacturing

(25), retail (20) followed by wholesale (15). Wednesfield has 20 medium sized

businesses, majority in manufacturing (10) followed by motor trade and transportation

& storage.

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(Business Register and Employment Survey NOMIS 2017)

3.0 Wednesfield Local Economic Development

3.1 Wednesfield’s economy is concentrated around Bentley Bridge, Wednesfield village

centre and the employment area to the south of the village which contains a number of

development opportunities including Pantheon Park and Bowmans Harbour. In addition,

New Cross Hospital on the boundary of Wednesfield is an important local employer.

Wednesfield has a self-contained village centre including a supermarket and post office.

The High Street hosts a High Street market organised by the Council and charity markets

where charity organisations are invited to have a stall to promote their charities. Bentley

Bridge Retail Park has undergone major expansion, which has attracted many national

retailers including Argos, TK Maxx, Costa Coffee, Boots and Next. The site also houses

many restaurants and leisure facilities which include a cinema, bowling alley, gym and

swimming pool.

3.2 Business Support: Businesses across Wolverhampton are supported through the

Growth Hub. Business navigators, funded by European Regional Development Fund

(ERDF), undertake reviews to identify business needs and broker support that will help

businesses grow. Navigators are currently working with a few companies in

Wednesfield, mainly in the Neachells Lane area, including Total Construction Supplies,

Pemberton Engineering, NDT Ltd.

3.3 City Development: the employment area to the south of the village centre is one of the

largest and better quality employment areas in the City and there are a number of

development opportunities available including Pantheon Park and Bowmans Harbour.

The City Development Team are progressing an Industrial Sites Strategy which seeks to

bring forward a portfolio of sites across the City including Wednesfield. Recently £3.7

million has been awarded from the West Midlands Combined Authority’s (WMCA)

Collective Investment Fund to construct six units on the Steelpark Trading Estate worth

£6.2 million aimed at providing dozens of new jobs once construction is complete at the

end of 2017. Recent investments include GTG Training Academy (part of the Arnold

Clark Group) invested £10 million into a new West Midlands Regional Training Academy

in Wednesfield.

3.4 Skills and Employment: a range of support is available to local residents to get into

employment, education and training including Wolves at Work and European Social Fund

and Youth Employment Initiative funded Impact programme. Wolves@Work, a

partnership between the Council and DWP, provide support for Wednesfield residents

including a drop in at the Hope Centre. To date, 15 Wednesfield residents have been

supported by the Council’s work coaches. Impact, which supports young people

between 15 and 29 into education, employment and training deliver support from

Wednesfield Strengthening Families hub and a dedicated Impact Key Worker works with

Wolverhampton Homes tenants. Impact has supported 52 Wednesfield young people.

3.5 Local and Cultural Economy: Wednesfield have a strong network of community

voluntary organisations who are very proactive at organising events and activities that

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add vibrancy to Wednesfield. They aim to improve the economy by putting Wednesfield

on the map and increasing footfall of high street through events such as the Christmas

Lights switch on and Bentley Bridge via the canal festival. Wednesfield in Bloom also

aims to attract people to the village.

3.6 Hands On Wednesfield is a volunteer community group formed from the former

Wednesfield & Fallings Park Local Neighbourhood Partnership. The group organise local

community events and fundraise to improve the community cohesion and lives of the

local area. Events include:

1. Summer events

2. Christmas Lights event and Christmas Charity Market

3. Annual Christmas carol service

4. Wednesfield Canal Festival

5. Lich Avenue community garden project

The group also support all local initiatives such as the Wednesfield in Bloom entry, and

promote all the local organisations within the area via promoting and supporting their

events through social media and website links.

3.7 Wednesfield In Bloom Volunteer Committee bring together various organisations from

around Wednesfield to enter the England in Bloom initiative. They work together to raise

funds to support groups to put their project ideas into action. In September, Wednesfield

scooped a Gold Award in the Urban Community Category of the Heart of England in

Bloom awards. They receive lots of support from local organisations such as

Wolverhampton Homes and the Council. The Council’s involvement is through improving

the landscape and street furniture it is responsible for and removing graffiti to keep a

vibrant feel. The Council also contributed six four-tiered planters, and help with grass

cutting, street cleaning and painting street furniture. Their ambition for 2018 is to get best

in category.

3.8 The Christmas lights switch on are run by the Council’s events team who organise

activities such as Signal 107 and the Fairground. The local community organises a

charity market event and Christmas carol service which incorporates all the local school

children. Hands on Wednesfield are raising additional money for new lights on

lampposts, storage and installation. They are keen to work with Council to buy more

lights and columns and get businesses involved.

3.9 Wednesfield Canal Festival held at Bentley Bridge Moorings by the Nickelodeon pub is in

its third year. The festival sees a number of canal boats trading at the pop up market, an

extended live music line up and children’s activities and entertainment. The festival

resulted in an uplift in sales at Bentley Bridge from customers attending the canal festival

with footfall up 9.38% vs the same week in 2016 attribute approximately 4,300 visited the

site for the canal festival. Going forward, additional support is requested to publicise the

event through for example what’s on events.

3.10 The Council has recently secured European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) on

resources on behalf of a broader Black Country partnership to improve Wednesfield

canal as part of the proposed Local Nature Reserve (LNR). The LNR will cover the

length of the Wyrley and Essington canal, and adjoining land owned by the Council. The

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City Council is to enter into a collaboration agreement with the Canal and River Trust and

Walsall MBC to manage the LNR for at least 21 Years and to designate the LNR in

Wolverhampton as a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation (SINC).

3.11 Wednesfield History Society was founded to keep history of Wednesfield alive including

celebrating the historic battle of Wodensfield. The group is chaired by local historian Ray

Fellows who has written several books on the history of Wednesfield. The founders of the

group have been involved in visiting Schools to deliver sessions on the history of

Wednesfield and held several events to commemorate Queen Elizabeth II visit to

Wednesfield and the Lancaster Bomber Crash. The group also hold historical day trips to

various locations linked to the history of Wednesfield. Recently the Group have been

involved in the renaming of Albion public house on Lichfield Road to The Lancaster is

remembrance of the Aircrew killed in the Lancaster Bomber crash of 1945, the group are

currently working towards a permanent memorial for the Aircrew.

3.12 Wednesfield have a range of other local statutory and community resources including:

Ashmore Park Hub is run by volunteers and supports the local community in holding fund

raising events and local family fun days for the local community. Volunteers manage the

community café which is a great asset to the local community. The Hub is managed by a

group of volunteers and hold regular committee meetings consisting of the Hub users

and groups who hire the rooms. This group is chaired by Anne Wood. The Hub have

recently won the 2017 Queens award for voluntary service.

Wednesfield Community Hub, run by a committee of volunteers, holds many community

fun days annually and hire out the community rooms to many local groups. They hold

regular committee meetings consisting off the Centre users and community

groups/organisations.

Long Knowle Community Hub, run by volunteers, hire out their rooms to many

community groups and hold annual community fun days for families. They hold regular

committee meetings consisting of Hub Users and community groups.

Wednesfield Rotary Group fund raise throughout the year and support local groups in

giving donations to improve their organisations. They also hold an annual Christmas

sleigh route around the Wednesfield Area and donate Christmas gifts to Children within

the area.

The GEM centre, situated in Neachells Lane, offers a set of specialist services for young

people of all abilities to support with mental health, emotional and psychological

difficulties

Wolverhampton Homes Office, Alfred Squire Road houses both the Housing Office and

the Head Start team.

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Police Station, Alfred Squire Road houses the Local Neighbourhood Police Team which

support the local community at local community days and hold regular PACT meetings

and visit local schools to deliver safety messages.

The Children Centre on Graiseley Lane have a nursery and family support teams working

from the Centre and offer a variety of support services.

3.13 In the past, the partnership developed the Wednesfield Art Trail, a community led public

art project encapsulating what the area means to local people. The trail comprises four

figures in cast iron, produced at a local foundry in Willenhall, on granite plinths distributed

around the green space in front of Wednesfield Community Hub – the Readers, the

Shoppers, the Bus Stop and the Market Stall. The fifth piece is a striking stainless steel

signpost with decorative arms called The Wayfinder which points out key locations in

Wednesfield including the community hub, canal and the Bentley Bridge retail park. The

Wednesfield Art Trail was delivered by the City of Wolverhampton Council and local

community group Hands On Wednesfield thanks to a grant of £35,000 from the owners of

the Bentley Bridge.

3.14 Challenges emerging from this report include:

Supporting Wednesfield businesses to grow and thrive;

Ensuring Wednesfield residents benefit from local jobs and opportunities;

Supporting Wednesfield key local employment areas including the High Street to prosper

and grow;

Supporting local groups to increase vibrancy of Wednesfield including promoting events

and encouraging local spend.

4.0 Financial implications

4.1 The report provides an update on the current Wednesfield economy, as yet there are no

further proposals and current financial obligations are stated, therefore there are no

financial implications arising directly from this report. [HM/26102017/X]

5.0 Legal implications

5.1 As there are no actual proposal yet, there are no specific legal implications arising from

this report. When proposals have been formulated, a new reflection as to legal

implications will be required. LW/26102017/A

6.0 Equalities implications

6.1 There are no equalities implications arising directly from this report.

7.0 Environmental implications

7.1 There are no environmental implications arising directly from this report.

8.0 Human resources implications

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8.1 None.

9.0 Risk implications

9.1 There are no risk implications.

10.0 Corporate landlord implications

10.1 There are no corporate landlord implications

11.0 Schedule of background papers

11.1

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Appendix 1: Key Partners and Stakeholders

Local businesses and employers

Bentley Bridge

High Street Retailers

Local businesses and developers – GTG

Employment and opportunity sites – Pantheon Park, Bowmans Harbour, Steelpark Trading

Estate etc

New Cross Hospital (as local employer)

Local community and voluntary organisations

Hands On Wednesfield

Wednesfield in Bloom

Wednesfield History Society

Support Agencies

Black Country Growth Hub and Chamber of Commerce

Wolverhampton Homes

City of Wolverhampton Council

City Economy – Enterprise, Wolves@work, Impact, City Development

Markets

Events

Environmental Services

Canal and River Trust

West Midlands Combined Authority Collective Investment Fund

Local community assets and facilities

Ashmore Park Hub

Wednesfield Community Hub

Long Knowle Community Hub

Wednesfield Rotary Group

GEM Centre

Wolverhampton Homes office including Headstart

Police station including Local Neighbourhood Police Team

Children Centre

Local schools

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Appendix2: Wednesfield Statistics

This report is PUBLIC

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