Author: Cllr John O'Shea

Work with Canal & Rivers Trust

Work with Canal & Rivers Trust

Ninna Makrinov and I joined the local volunteers helping the Canal & Rivers Trust tidying up the stretch of canal that runs through Acocks Green. Ninna got on with some litterpicking while I got busy with the grappling hook. I didn’t catch much until I moved west of the bridge, when the hook dragged out the catch of the day – a Farmfoods shopping trolley.

Acocks Green Police Station taken off closure list

Acocks Green Police Station taken off closure list

I’m very pleased to announce that Acocks Green Police Station has been taken off the closure list following years of campaigning by myself and the rest of the local Labour team.In 2018 I secured a promise from the Police Constable and Police and Crime Commissioner that they would keep our neighbourhood policing teams local, and now they’ve kept that promise.The police will now be looking at how this station can be modernised to serve our community for many years into the future.

Huge investment for Fox Hollies park

Huge investment for Fox Hollies park

I’m delighted to confirm that I have just signed off on an investment of £495,000 in Fox Hollies Park. This will see both play areas refreshed and replaced, with the larger one at the Gospel Lane end moved a bit further up the hill and kitted out with the latest play equipment. There’ll be new play surfaces, fencing, paths and benches and even a bit of extra equipment for the skate park on the other side of the road.

This is part of a rolling scheme of investment using money secured from developers around the area. We’ve done this in close consultation with local residents and we’ve listened to you about priorities. You asked for more secure fencing around the park, so we did that first. Improving the play areas was the next step, so now that the money has become available, we’re getting on with the work.

We should start work in March 2022 and complete during that summer, making this great park even better for all those who live around it and use it.

Elmdon Road update

Elmdon Road update

Reported this excessive growth around the base of several trees on Elmdon Road that were actually blocking safe use of the footway. They’ve been cut back. I’ve reported the same problem on Malvern Road.

Birmingham Covid Update

Birmingham Covid Update

The impact of the national lockdown continues to reduce case numbers. The % of positive tests and the overall rate of cases has also fallen and testing rates have improved. Most of the identified contacts of cases are in the same household or householdvisitors. Spread often happens in the household but it isn’t inevitable, and can help.

We also continue to see clusters in workplaces and it is important that all employers take action to protect staff, including regulartesting. Anyone who is unable to work from home, or in a care or support bubble, should be testing every 3 days with lateral flow test which can help identify people who are infectious but don’t have symptoms. Testing for asymptomatic individuals is now available across the city including a facility at the Hippodrome along with fixed sites in Shard End, Sheldon, Kingstanding, Handsworth, Kings Norton, Sutton Mere Green and Maypole.There are 3 mobile sites as well as at over 90 community pharmacies – including the Jhoots pharmacies in Acocks Green and Hall Green.

The average daily Covid admissions has fallen to around 30 new cases a day across the hospitals in the city. Pressure on the NHSremains high, although there are positive signs of case rate improving and this should hopefully fall soon.

28 wards showed an increase in case numbers over the lastweek, but overall the case number has dropped from lastweek from 1,007 to 879 across all wards. Sutton Mere Green reported 2 cases this week, but had no new cases last week,so has been shown as a zero percent increase this week asthere is no denominator.

Case rates take account of the different population sizesacross wards so is a more useful way of looking at differencesbetween areas than just looking at case numbers.

The wards with the highest case rates (cases per 100,000residents) in the last week are:

• Allens Cross (213)

• Shard End (211)

• Highter’s Heath (186)

• Perry Common (172)

• Oscott (159)

• Edgbaston (154)

• South Yardley (140)

• Pype Hayes (139)

• Ward End (132)

• Kingstanding (114)

Case rates are declining in all age groups, and the 20 to 39 age group has the largest number of cases. Similarly, caseshave fallen over the past week in all ethnic groups, with thelargest number being from the White ethnic group.

Help for Carers

Help for Carers

Are you or do you know of any carers in Birmingham?

Carers are defined as citizens who are in receipt of carers allowance or, may care for a friend or family member that wouldn’t be able to cope without the support. These carers are sometimes known as hidden or informal carers.

Carers, both those in receipt of carers allowance or informal carers, are now eligible for a covid vaccination if they haven’t already been invited to have one.

We have asked Birmingham Carers Hub to register as many unknown/hidden carers as possible and pass their details to the NHS (University Hospital Birmingham) so that invitations for priority vaccinations can be sent out to eligible carers.

Forward Carers are the organisation who run the Carers Hub and who support carers in Birmingham on behalf of the City Council. They will ensure that you get access to information and advice from now onwards as well as ensure that your appropriate details are shared with the NHS as a carer who is eligible for a vaccine.It is really important that if you are eligible that you have the vaccine in order to protect you, yourself and those you care for.If you are still unsure if you are a carer, this link will help you decide:

You can register as a carer online:…/carer-register-form/ this is the quickest and most efficient method to register. Doing this will automatically ensure that your carer status and eligibility is shared with Birmingham’s local vaccination roll-out programme that is managed and led by the NHS.

If you need help registering, please call Birmingham Carer Hub Info & Advice Line on 0333 006 9711 (low call rate)