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Kings Heath Park TV Gardens Opening Hours 2014 PDF Print

Above: The former TV Gardens in the March 2014 Sunshine!

King's Heath Park's former TV Gardens will be open from 1 p.m. to 4.30 p.m. on  the following Sundays:in 2014:-

March 16th.

April 20th.

May 18th.

June 15th.

July 20th

August 17th

September 21st.

October 19th.

Entry is free and everyone is welcome.

 

 

 
Toyah is the first star on King's Heath's Walk of Fame PDF Print

Click and link to Toyah Willcox websiteSinger and actress Toyah Willcox was honoured as the first star on King's Heath's very own Walk of Fame on York Road on Monday 16 July 2012 in a ceremony hosted by legendary Birmingham drummer Bev Bevan. Later in the evening she played an unforgettable special intimate homecoming show at the Hare & Hounds.

Toyah said "My DNA is firmly rooted in King's Heath. Not only was I born in Grove Road, my grandfather, a construction developer, built most of the buildings there. And then my father took over the business that was then known as Willcox-Lang".

Toyah's induction is the latest stage in an ambitious plan to create a Walk of Fame to rival that of Hollywood. Starting last month with the unveiling of the first Musical Heritage Plate to  commemorate the Ritz Ballroom (see www.gigjunkies.com), It then continued with the erection of a specially commissioned Guitar and Microphone Summer Floral Display as part of Kings Heath's 2012 Britain in Bloom entry. And now Toyah has been honoured as the first star on the Walk of Fame.

York Road has been chosen as the location for the Walk of Fame because it contains the Hare and Hounds where UB40 and Frank Skinner started their careers as well as the Cash Converters building which was previously the Ritz Ballroom – one of 4 ballrooms run in the 1960’s by Irish husband and wife team Mary (Ma) and Joe (Pa) Regan – where most of the famous groups and artists of the 1960’s played.

These include

  • The Beatles on 15 Feb 1963beatles-p.p.m. cover shortly after releasing  “Please Please Me”,
  • Gene Vincent/The Outlaws featuring Ritchie Blackmore on 21 June 1963,
  • The Rolling Stones on 14 Sept 1963,
  • The Moody Blues on 28 March 1965,
  • Jimmy Cliff on 15 Dec 1965,
  • Robert Plant on 24 April 1966,
  • The Kinks on 11 June 1966 and
  • Pink Floyd on 16 Dec 1967.

Other artists who are thought to have played at the Ritz Ballroom include Bill Haley and the Comets, Jerry Lee Lewis, Spencer Davis Group, Cliff Richard. Gerry Dorsey (later to be known as Engelbert Humperdink), The Walker Brothers, The Animals, Freddie and The Dreamers, The Tremeloes, Joe Brown and Dusty Springfield.

They were all supported by top local groups like The Modernaires who were the first British act to sign and record  for RCA Victor - Elvis Presley's record label.

Other stars who could  be honoured on the Walk of Fame include Martin Barre (lead guitarist with Jethro Tull) who was also born in King's Heath,  Jo Dunne of Fuzzbox and folk Legend Ian Campbell who both lived in King's Heath until their recent untimely deaths, rock legend Trevor Burton and actress and comedian Janice Connolly who still live in King's Heath, The Editors who shared a house in King’s Heath from 2003 onwards after graduating from Stafford University and the Highbury Recording Studio founded by Bob Lamb and now run by John Mostyn.

UB40's Brian Travers believes the Walk of Fame initiative "is really exciting and bound to inspire young artists, performers and musicians to believe in themselves as well as making the residents and shoppers of Kings Heath feel good about their neighbourhood".

Please e mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it if you have any old photos, posters etc or memories of famous King's Heath people.

 
Here We Come A-Wassailling in King's Heath! PDF Print

treebread

alysgathering02King's Heath's very first Wassail is thought to have taken place at the Community Centre Edible Garden on Sunday 15 January.

Wassailing is a traditional ceremony which normally takes place in cider-producing counties that involves singing and drinking the health of trees in the hope they might better thrive.

Morris dancing by King's Heath's very own Brethren Border Morris group began the Wassail, toast soaked in cider was then placed on the fruit trees in the garden and food and drink shared by all those who attended.

Sharron Carr-Wu rounded off the Wassail by telling stories and Alys Fowler demonstrated how to prune the trees in the garden.

A great afternoon was enjoyed by all those who came to what is hoped will become a regular annual event.

Many new volunteers were recruited to help maintain the grarden throughout 2012 with more events in the garden being planned for the summer.

gathering02

treebread02(Wassail images within gardens belonging to Heathfield Road Community Centre's "Edible Garden". Permission and courtesy - Marcus Belben of KHCC Garden Club who must be thanked for largely organising the Wassail!)

The image below is of King's Heath's very own Brethren Border Morris Group. Click on the image to go straight to their website.Click on image to go to Brethren Border Morris

 
Front Garden Competition Winners Announced PDF Print

39AlbertRoad02_small

The winners of the 2011 Kings Heath Floral Trail Front Gardens Competition were announced at a celebratory gathering at the Hare & Hounds Pub, Kings Heath, Birmingham, on the 20th September 2011. In attendance were all those volunteers, organisers and helpers who had come together to make this year's Gold Award possible, along with comedienne, actress and artistic director Janice Connolly (aka the caricature, Mrs Barbara Nice), who was invited to compere the occasion and present the awards,

Every front garden was automatically judged within the area bounded by Valentine Road, Springfield Road, Barn Lane, Wheelers Lane, Howard Road, Vicarage Road, Avenue Road and Dads Lane. Gardens were assessed against the criteria of sustainability, types of plants used, maintenance and biodiversity. All those nominated by the judges were invited to the "Thank You" event on September 20 where prizes were awarded to the winners. 

joint Winner of KHFT Front Gardens Competition 2011

Regional Front Garden Winners

North-west Area Winner - 47 York Road

North-east Area Winner - 25 Valentine Road

South-east Area Winner - 39 Albert Road

South-west Area Winner - 18 Abbots Road

Overall Winners (Joint Award)

47 York Road

39 Albert Road

 
Kingsway Blaze Sadness PDF Print

KingswayCinema01aIt is with great regret that organisers and volunteers of the Kings Heath Floral Trail learned of the fire which took hold of the former Kingsway Cinema, turned Gala Bingo Hall, that gutted the inside and damaged its roof, including the ornate ceiling, on the morning of Saturday, 17th September 2011. This summer, Floral Trail volunteers worked their socks off to clear up the frontage of the now ruined building, giving their time to weeding, cleaning and sprucing up what was clearly a neglected area, just in time for the judges to view the Floral Trail in its entirety. Events like this can hit a community hard when groups take interest and discussions take place as to the eventual usage of such an iconic neo-classical building. One idea mooted, was to turn it into a trendy music venue  - although a planning application to convert it into a wedding reception centre had recently failed (click here for more details). Now all ideas are on hold as safety experts, buildings inspectors and insurance assessors will undoubtedly soon meet to decide on the cinema's eventual fate.

A silent 8mm cine film of Kings Heath village in 1960, apparently filmed at the time by the son of a Kings Heath shop owner, has been digitally converted and uploaded onto youtube. Just click on the embedded window below to start playing the movie and you can see, between 1:49 minutes and 2:05 minutes, what the Kingsway Cinema was like in its heyday and former glory. (Please let us know if you have problems by contacting us here)

Who knows what will become of the former Kingsway Cinema and what was the real reason behind its demise - the latter should be known in due course. But let's hope a decision is made that will not undermine the hard work of local residents and businesses alike that culminated in this year's Gold Award in the Urban Community category of the Heart of England in Bloom competition, but can act as a springboard to further improve inter-community links that was so important in securing our success this time around.kingswayvolunteers01a

 
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