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Green open spaces
16 Nov 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

New Hall Valley Country Park: From Sutton Coldfield Town Centre towards Pype Hayes Park (January 2019)

I initially became aware of New Hall Valley Country Park during the Christmas Day 2018 walk up from Pype Hayes Park along the Plants Brook. So a month later in January 2019, got a bus up to Sutton Coldfield Town Centre, and made my way to the park. And walked down the path. Passing the New Hall Water Mill and Walmley Golf Club. Eventually back on the same paths I was on the month before.

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New Hall Valley Country Park: From Sutton Coldfield Town Centre towards Pype Hayes Park (January 2019)





I initially became aware of New Hall Valley Country Park during the Christmas Day 2018 walk up from Pype Hayes Park along the Plants Brook. So a month later in January 2019, got a bus up to Sutton Coldfield Town Centre, and made my way to the park. And walked down the path. Passing the New Hall Water Mill and Walmley Golf Club. Eventually back on the same paths I was on the month before.


A walk through New Hall Valley Country Park during January 2019. Starting from Sutton Coldfield Town Centre and heading in the direction of Pype Hayes Park.

First up some information taken from the Wikipedia page (link above). It is a country park located in the New Hall Valley between Walmley and Wylde Green in the Sutton Coldfield. Birmingham City Council created the park in 2005. The land was formerly part of the New Hall Manor Estate. There is ancient woodland, historic wetland grazing meadows, former farmland, and part of Plants Brook within the country park. There is also a 17th Century listed watermill called New Hall Mill.

 

During a Christmas Day 2018 walk from Pype Hayes Park (link to the post is above), on a path along the Plants Brook, I got to this point where I saw a fingerpost for the New Hall Valley Country Park. Making a mental note about this park at the time. It was just beyond the railway line for the Sutton Park Line. We turned back in the direction of Pype Hayes Park from near here. I would be back a month later.

In January 2019, I ended up getting a National Express West Midlands Platinum bus all the way to Sutton Coldfield Town Centre. After a coffee stop, I started my walk to the park. These fingerposts were on the South Parade near Lower Queen Street.

Some more signs on the National Cycle Network route 534. Seen on Ebrook Road. I was only about a quarter of a mile away from the Newhall Valley Country Park (seems to be two spellings). Sutton Coldfield Town Centre was three quarters of a mile in the other direction.

I got into the park at Ebrook Road from this path near the Plants Brook.

Below the bridge on Ebrook Road was what looked like a small waterfall.

The path towards the Sutton Park Line Tunnel. The former railway line crosses over the Plants Brook at this point.

From the other side of the Sutton Park Line Tunnel. Graffiti on this side.

A look back down the path along the Plants Brook towards the tunnel.

Heading forward saw this footbridge cross the Plants Brook.

Saw an electricity pylon to the left of the path.

Checking out this wooden decking. Looked quite icy on the grass and on the decking so wasn't on here for long.

A no cycling sign. The path to the right is a bit too muddy, so cyclists should stick to the main path. But it's suitable for walking (if you want to get mud on your shoes etc).

Another footbridge over the Plants Brook.

The Plants Brook was looking quite calm from this side of the footbridge.

Back to the main path, as I followed the Plants Brook in the direction of the mill.

First glimpse of the New Hall Water Mill. Trees in the way.

Another view of the mill. Would try and get better views when I shortly after this walked up a path towards it.

The path and the Plants Brook close to Wylde Green Road.

Saw this stone house near Wylde Green Road. It is time to get a proper look at the nearby mill.

Close to the end of the path as the Wylde Green Road Bridge was straight ahead over the Plants Brook.

Bollards for New Hall Valley at Wylde Green Road. Before I continued, I turned left to check out the mill.

On the way to the road to the mill, I went past this gate for Wincelle House.

Wincelle House is a Grade II Listed Building dating from the early 15th century. It is a timber framed building, which was removed from Wishaw in 1910.

Continuing on, saw this sign for New Hall Hotel & Spa. B76 1PH. The sign was for the Emergency Access to New Hall Health Club & Spa.

Side view of Wincelle House from a nearby field as I headed to see New Hall Mill.

First proper look at New Hall Mill, without too many trees in the way.

New Hall Water Mill is a Grade II* Listed Building. It dates to the 18th century.

As it was during winter though, the mill was not open. I think it is open on open days, but it is quite a distance to travel back  there to properly explore this mill.

Fingerpost for visitors to use. You can go on the Tree Trail, go to the Cart Shed and more.

One more view of the mill. A bit hard to see behind the trees. But now it was time to resume the walk towards Pype Hayes Park.

Back to Wylde Green Road for the last leg of the walk in the New Hall Valley Country Park. Another pair of bollards.

Fingerpost near the Wylde Green Road entrance. Sutton Park and Coleshill Road to the left. Walmley to the right.

Saw this Birmingham City Council map of New Hall Valley Country Park. Was looking a bit dirty.

Another bridge crossing the Plants Brook, this one with yellow railings.

A look down the Plants Brook. Appeared to be a bricked channel of water on the left near the path.

Better view of the Plants Brook not obscured by the trees.

At the end of the New Hall Valley Country Park near near the Plants Brook walk. Another part of the old Sutton Park railway line passes by near here.

Fingerpost near the Plants Brook walk just outside of the Country Park. Sutton Coldfield was not a mile and a half away on foot and on a bike.

Passing through these gates as I exited the New Hall Valley Country Park and followed the Plants Brook back to Pype Hayes Park. On a path I had walked on the month before.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Now at 1,100 followers. Thank you.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

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70 passion points
Green travel
16 Nov 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Voi eScooters around the City Centre

In the months before the 2nd lockdown, I was able to travel to the City Centre (when it was allowed), and occasionally saw the new Voi eScooters around. They are road legal, although some users did seem to ride them on pavements, or on pedestrianised roads. It's not just the official orange ones I've seen. Personal owned black eScooters have been seen all over the City as well.

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Voi eScooters around the City Centre





In the months before the 2nd lockdown, I was able to travel to the City Centre (when it was allowed), and occasionally saw the new Voi eScooters around. They are road legal, although some users did seem to ride them on pavements, or on pedestrianised roads. It's not just the official orange ones I've seen. Personal owned black eScooters have been seen all over the City as well.


Voi eScooter's

Voi Scooters users can download an app, and pay for the use of them. They are located all over Birmingham City Centre. Apparently anyone can use the, either a man in a suit or a student in jeans. They reduce noise and air pollution. They enable people to move freely in an urban environment.

There is a 6 month trial in Birmingham City Centre. I think they were to have a trial in Coventry but that was halted. I also found some none Voi eScooter's over in Redditch, Worcestershire.

After about a month, Voi put these pads on the handles, so that they can be cleaned after each use (due to the Pandemic and hand sanitising etc).

I wouldn't want to ride them myself, prefer to get the bus or train and walk.

 

12th September 2020 on the High Street (near lower Bull Street). Got my first photo of a Voi eScooter from my bus stop. Buses on the Stratford Road routes including the 2, 3, 5 and 6.

Earlier that day, I got a photo of a masked man riding an Voi eScooter through Centenary Square, outside of the Library of Birmingham.

16th September 2020 in Victoria Square. Graham Young of the Birmingham Mail on a test ride, stop as another guy passes him. He later wrote an article for the Birmingham Live, which you can read here: What happened when we tried to ride a VOI scooter in Birmingham city centre

You can find him on Twitter: Graham Young.

9th October 2020, heading down Hill Street, I spotted this eScooter. Close to Hinckley Street, and not far from Smallbrook Queensway. I was heading down to Southside to check out the latest B-Side Hip Hop street art.

On the 10th October 2020, saw this pair of Voi eScooter's near the bike racks on Eden Place. Close to Colmore Row and the Council House.

11th October 2020 from Navigation Street outside of Birmingham New Street Station, saw this trio of three Voi eScooter's. Not far from the Stephenson Street entrance to the station. The day I was going to see Van Gogh Alive at the Birmingham Hippodrome. Had just come down from Grand Central Birmingham.

25th October 2020 from the Bullring near St Martin's Church. This Voi eScooter at the corner of Edgbaston Street and St Martin's Lane.

2nd November 2020 in The Golden Square near Vyse Street in the Jewellery Quarter. Three Voi eScooter's, not far from the site of where the Jewellery Quarter Clock was until August 2020.

Bonus eScooter's in Redditch, Worcestershire

14th October 2020 a train trip to Redditch to see the John Bonham statue, when I saw some BIRD eScooter's in Redditch on Alcester Street. Similar in design to Voi, but a little different.

There was three BIRD eScooter's outside of the Redditch Town Hall.

 

It will probably not be until the 2nd lockdown is over that I will see more eScooter's around Birmingham. Unless I got out for a local walk, and see someone riding a black eScooter on the pavement (which is illegal, they should be ridden on the road).

I might be back in the City Centre week commencing 16th November 2020, for the first time in 2 weeks, so might see move Voi eScooter's when I'm in town.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown. Can be found on Twitter: ellrbrown.

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50 passion points
Construction & regeneration
16 Nov 2020 - Stephen Giles
Gallery

Construction of 103 Colmore Row - October & November 2020 photo update

103 Colmore Row is certainly looking superb!

Take our October & November update feature from Daniel and Reiss, contributors at It’s Your Build and Birmingham We Are, and loyal followers of the built environment in Birmingham.

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Construction of 103 Colmore Row - October & November 2020 photo update





103 Colmore Row is certainly looking superb!

Take our October & November update feature from Daniel and Reiss, contributors at It’s Your Build and Birmingham We Are, and loyal followers of the built environment in Birmingham.


NOVEMBER

Photos by Daniel Sturley

Photos by Reiss Gordon-Henry.

OCTOBER

Photos by Daniel Sturley

TWITTER: Buildsweare
INSTAGRAM: Itsyourbirmingham

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40 passion points
Rivers, lakes & canals
12 Nov 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

The River Cole at the Scribers Lane ford

There is a few fords that pass through the River Cole. Scribers Lane in Hall Green near Yardley Wood is one of them. Located in the Shire Country Park between the Trittiford Mill Pool and the Scribers Lane SINC. This road is no longer in use, as there is bollards at both ends. There is a footbridge for pedestrians, cyclists and dog walkers. The river level changes here during the year.

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The River Cole at the Scribers Lane ford





There is a few fords that pass through the River Cole. Scribers Lane in Hall Green near Yardley Wood is one of them. Located in the Shire Country Park between the Trittiford Mill Pool and the Scribers Lane SINC. This road is no longer in use, as there is bollards at both ends. There is a footbridge for pedestrians, cyclists and dog walkers. The river level changes here during the year.


River Cole at the Scribers Lane ford

This ford is located on Scribers Lane between Yardley Wood and Hall Green in Birmingham. The River Cole flows through the road on the Cole Valley. Nearby is the Trittiford Mill Pool and the Scribers Lane SINC. Visitors on walks can use a footbridge to cross the river on Scribers Lane. There is bollards at both ends of the river, as it is no longer suitable for cars or other motor vehicles to cross over. One set of bollards on Scribers Lane is near Riverside Crescent. Pedestrians can walk through the middle in the gap.

For my Shire Country Park posts relevant to this area:

2014-16

After a walk down to The Baldwin during February 2014, I walked down Baldwins Lane and then onto Scribers Lane. I got to this Ford sign just before the railway bridge on the Shakespeare Line.

The road is liable to flooding. Only cycles can go past here. At the time I thought that you couldn't walk up the road, so I turned back. Beyond here is the Scribers Lane Allotments.

The May Day Bank Holiday during May 2016. After leaving the Trittiford Mill Pool, saw the River Cole on the Scribers Lane ford for the first time.

The back of the tree near the River Cole. From a footbridge at the far end of the Trittiford Mill Pool. Can just about see the road surface to the right.

There's the bridge that pedestrians and cyclists can use to cross the river.

At this point in the Spring, the river level was quite low.

Scribers Lane sign near the bridge.

Discarded barrier in the River Cole near the Scribers Lane ford.

The other side of the River Cole into the Scribers Lane SINC.

These views of the River Cole at the Scribers Lane ford taken during December 2016. The river level is always higher in late autumn and early winter. This was after a period of heavy rain.

You can see why this road is closed off to cars or other motor vehicles, it is just too unsafe for them to pass without them getting stuck.

2020

The first National Lockdown at the end of March 2020, and a walk down Scribers Lane to get onto the Trittiford Mill Pool. First up the railway bridge on the Shakespeare Line between Yardley Wood and Shirley.

It seems that you can walk down Scribers Lane. Trees yet to get their leaves grown back.

Bollards just before the footbridge. The River Cole is to the right on Scribers Lane.

Crossing the footbridge over the River Cole.

The view of the River Cole from the footbridge on Scribers Lane.

The River Cole from the other side. Within months all of the natural growth would grow back during the first lockdown.

The River Cole looked shallow enough to go into from Scribers Lane.

The main tree near the River Cole on Scribers Lane. Water surrounds it when the river level is higher.

Still in lockdown during May 2020. The trees are now lush and green. A month long drought, and the River Cole was quite shallow.

Even the main tree was looking dry as the leaves were green, and the river was low.

It was so nice and warm in May, and the Shire Country Park was looking green near the River Cole on Scribers Lane.

The 2nd lockdown began on the 5th November 2020. After a walk down to Yardley Wood and into the Trittiford Mill Pool. Got some Autumnal views of the River Cole on Scribers Lane. The river level now looks higher.

There's that tree again, the River Cole going behind it, but the land around it was not flooded at this point.

Heading to the footbridge over the River Cole. The closest cars can get now is behind the bollards and close to the Allotments.

I think the river level is too high for cyclists to ride through. Then again, I expect that they use the bridge as it's safer to cross.

The walk up Scribers Lane towards the railway bridge. Vehicles that do drive down here must be under 12'6".

There is also the ford on Slade Lane. I think I'll do a separate post on that ford at a later date.

The other ford in the Shire Country Park, but one that cars can drive through is on Green Road near the Greet Mill Meadow and Sarehole Mill Recreation Ground.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown. Can be found on Twitter: ellrbrown.

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60 passion points
History & heritage
10 Nov 2020 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

The Lickey Monument

If you are walking to or from Beacon Hill at the Lickey Hills Country Park on Monument Lane, you might spot an obelisk in a field. This is The Monument. Erected in memory of Other Archer Windsor, 6th Earl of Plymouth by the Worcestershire Regiment of Yeomanry Cavalry in 1834. He was their Colonel Commandant. From a distance the monument is visible from far and wide.

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The Lickey Monument





If you are walking to or from Beacon Hill at the Lickey Hills Country Park on Monument Lane, you might spot an obelisk in a field. This is The Monument. Erected in memory of Other Archer Windsor, 6th Earl of Plymouth by the Worcestershire Regiment of Yeomanry Cavalry in 1834. He was their Colonel Commandant. From a distance the monument is visible from far and wide.


The Lickey Monument

I first saw the obelisk behind some gates off Monument Lane in Lickey back in May 2013. I took some zoom ins over the fence at the bottom, but didn't enter the field at the time. I've seen it again close up at least one more time since, but didn't take more close up photos.

 

Some history.

The monument was erected by the Worcestershire Regiment of Yeomanry Cavalry in memory of their late Colonel Commandant, Other Archer Windsor, 6th Earl of Plymouth (1789-1833). He lived in a house in nearby Barnt Green for some time.

 

It is Grade II listed. It dates to about 1834. It was made of Anglesey marble.

Located in a field off Monument Lane, it is also close to Old Birmingham Road. Beacon Hill is to the north west, while Bilberry Hill is to the east.

 

In October 2020, I was walking down the Bristol Road South in Northfield, when I zoomed into this view of the Lickey Hills. The Monument was clearly visible from here. At the bottom of the picture is Longbridge.

I unexpectedly went down to Longbridge again at the end of October 2020, after getting a bus down Bristol Road South from Selly Oak Triangle. Got off the bus and got this view. The Lickey Hills seen in the distance, but not zoomed in far enough to see The Monument. Bournville College on the corner of Longbridge Lane and Bristol Road South is now part of South & City College Birmingham (either the Bournville or Longbridge Campus).

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown. Can be found on Twitter: ellrbrown.

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