Knowle Ward Strategy submission

Solihull Council sets out an overview of its strategy and plans on a regular basis. The Knowle Society has submitted its priorities to the Council’s Neighbourhood Management team for 2008/2009.

The Neighbourhood Management team (responsible for Transport, Highways & the Environment Community Services Directorate), has requested an input on the Knowle Ward from The Knowle Society for 2008/2009.

The Community Services sub-committee of The Knowle Society has sumitted the following matters as priorities:

1. Youth involvement with positive activities in order to reduce anti-social behaviour.

2. Parking issues including green verge damage

3. Speeding

In addition the maintenance of roads and footpaths has been highlighted as a concern.

Your chance to meet our local police and raise your concerns

A Public Meeting is to be held by the Police on Thursday 15th May at 7pm in Knowle Village Hall with Council neighbourhood teams in attendance. Local Priorities will be set and Knowle Society members are encouraged to attend.

The Police hold regular public meetings in Knowle, the next one being on Thursday 15th May at the Village hall at 7.00pm. Representatives from SMBC attend and members of the public are invited to take part. Lorna Gale from the Community Services Sub-Committee of The Knowle Society will also be there. The purpose of the meeting is for the Police to give a progress report and get feedback from the meeting. The resulting discussion will enable priorities to be set for Police actions.

Best Practice award for The Knowle Society

Runners up for SUSTAiN competition to find the Best Practice organisation in the voluntary sector in Solihull Borough.

The Society entered a ‘Best Practice’ competition run by SUSTAiN, the new name backing Solihull’s voluntary sector. We were fortunate to achieve a position in the final three entrants, and after being interviewed by an independent judge, Mr Lawrie Rumens, a decision was made that we finished a close second to the winners. An award of 200 pounds has been made which is to be spent in connection with the Dr Bower memorial garden project, which is hopefully to be the site at the top of Station Road created by demolishing the old toilet block and having a more open garden around a new style bus stop. The development will be a ‘community effort’ and the existing Steering Group also incorporates Knowle & Dorridge Rotary Club, Knowle Traders and Solihull Council on whose land the existing building is sited. All this detail is subject to acceptance by the residents and the Council.

Doorstep collection of glass for recycling

Solihull Council has announced that it plans to commence doorstep collection in the autumn of glass for recycling.

It will be interesting to see whether all or some of the bins in various locations around Knowle will then be withdrawn. There may still be a need for a central ‘bring to’ facility but otherwise it could herald a welcome return of car parking places. On the other hand there are still several household waste materials that could be collected for recycling that are currently disposed of to landfill or incineration, these could now be collected centrally – but if collecting those items, why not continue to collect glass centrally? What is really needed is full doorstep collection of all waste materials and that will take a little longer to organise.

Response to Airport Expansion proposal

Read the letter sent to the Airport in March 2008. Subject – The Knowle Society’s response to Birmingham International Airport’s proposed Planning Application for airport expansion.

The Knowle Society is pleased that a number of concerns raised in March 2006 to the first consultation document, have been addressed. In particular the maps showing projected flight paths and noise contours will be satisfactory to the residents of Knowle. The proposal to raise the level of public transport usage to the Airport from 25% to 35% is also welcomed.

Surface Access is however, still a major concern, very little detail is available with respect to existing and projected peak and average traffic flows on the M42 up to 2012 and specific detail is required. Later years (2012 -2030) are of even greater concern as the projections are unspecified and inevitably more speculative.

As we set out in our 2006 response, the roads around Knowle already feel the impact of congestion from the M42. Significantly increased traffic and peak events will adversely affect local amenities e.g. road congestion and air quality

The Knowle Society is also of the opinion that a direct link from the M42 to the Airport is required to mitigate M42 congestion.

There is an urgent need for a powerful co-ordinating authority to ensure that all agencies involved, airport, road and rail, produce and deliver a coherent plan to meet all needs that will arise.

These concerns prevent us from endorsing the Airport’s planning application.

Finally any new motorway service station in the area will exacerbate the congestion problems and the relevant planning authorities should take this into account.