‘Fighting For Air’ BBC2 documentary broadcast 10 January 2018

Fighting For Air, an air pollution documentary presented by Dr Xand van Tulleken, will be shown on BBC2 on Wednesday 10 January 2018 at 9pm.

Recorded with the help of local enthusiasts and volunteers in December 2017 for Kings Heath Clean Air Day, the programme investigates:

  • how communities and experts in pollution science can work together to reduce air pollution on the High Street on a single day
  • the effect of air pollution on the human body after being exposed to a typical city street

Public meeting for BBC2 air pollution documentary

Amazing Productions, a production company from London, are making a documentary for BBC2 about air pollution in the UK. Part of their enquiry focuses on Kings Heath, and considers what can be done to reduce traffic and emissions causing air pollution on the High Street.

A public meeting to gather views from residents and business owners on how to tackle air quality and traffic on Kings Heath High Street takes place on:

Tuesday, 24 October 2017
6pm to 8.30pm
All Saints Centre, 2 Vicarage Road, Kings Heath, B14 7RA

The meeting will be filmed.

BBC2 documentary flyer

Public space protection order (PSPO) consultation opens

There has been a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) in place for Kings Heath High Street and Moseley for several months. The original news item about the consultation prior to the introduction of the PSPO can be seen here.  Birmingham City Council is looking to extend this PSPO.

The original Order expires on 25 September 2017. The draft of the revised Order can be read in full here.

The text explains that the purpose is to restrict activities ‘that have had or are likely to have, a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality’. The Locality is defined as Kings Heath High Street. The activities being targeted include:

  • Anti-social behaviour caused by groups of people or individuals in public spaces;
  • Verbal abuse;
  • Threats of or use of violence;
  • Unlicensed drinking;
  • Obstructing Pathways;
  • Begging;
  • Possession of goods, items or materials used for unauthorised graffiti;

If you want to make a comment as part of the consultation process, you can find details here. 

 

New transport proposals

A new Draft 2026 Delivery Plan for Transport across the west midlands has been put out for consultation. The plan has been prepared by Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) and is described as setting out ‘the schemes which will deliver a large amount of the Combined Authority’s long term transport strategy Movement for Growth’.

From Kings Heath residents’ point of view, one of the surprising aspects of the report is that Kings Heath is mentioned very few times. The proposed new railway station at Kings Heath is included (page 6) while the number 50 bus route is identified as a corridor which should be studied to ‘identify potential improvements’ (page 13).

However, the fact that Kings Heath is rarely mentioned in the document offers a possible benefit. One of the key factors appears to be that a number of transport ‘corridors’ are being proposed, none of which include the A435 (Alcester Road South and High Street, Kings Heath).

The Kings Heath Residents’ Forum (KHRF) has seized on this as evidence that the A435 should be downgraded and categorised as unsuitable for heavy through traffic. This would provide an opportunity to ban HGVs from Kings Heath unless they are making deliveries. Among the benefits of such a policy would be an improvement in traffic safety and a reduction in air pollution.

The KHRF will monitor the response of TfWM to submissions and, if necessary, make further representations.

For more information:

Main Transport for West Midlands website

Consultation draft document

Proposed transport corridors

Additional information

Kings Heath Residents’ Forum gets results

Two recent actions by Kings Heath Residents Forum (KHRF) members have achieved results.

BT Openreach premises in Howard Road East

A considerable amount of litter and fallen leaves had collected both on the frontage of the building and along the pavement side of the fence. A KHRF member contacted BT, explained that a Spring Clean was being organised in various sites and by various groups across Kings Heath. Would BT help by cleaning up the front of the premises in Howard Road East? Admittedly it’s a while since the Great British Spring Clean but the clean up outside the building has been completed.

Commercial waste on the High Street

Complaints were made about an accumulation of commercial waste behind retail premises on the High Street. It should have been in a closed container so that it could not be blown out into the street. The complaint was passed to the Environmental Health Regulation and Enforcement department and a Waste Enforcement Team visited the retailer. A member of the team explained the retailer’s legal responsibilities which hopefully means that this particular source of wind-blown litter has been stopped.

Thanks to Kate Smith of BT Openreach and the Waste Enforcement Team of Birmingham City Council for dealing with these issues so quickly.