Black Country news and blogs Friday 24 March 2017
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Event 264 – 18 March 2017 

23 Mar

This week's Hi-viz heroes: If you can help us out by volunteering in future weeks, please get in touch.

High-Strangeness in Defiance, Ohio 

23 Mar

My two latest articles at Mysterious Universe have a connection: the location.

Celebrating Mothers Day with Tesco 

23 Mar

*A collaborative post in partnership with Tesco In case you had forgotten, it’s Mothers Day this coming Sunday and it’s the one day of the year when Mums really should come first.

A Shape-Shifter in the Lone Star State 

22 Mar

At Mysterious Universe , I share the strange story of a shape-shifting wolf in 1930s Texas...

Immortality of the Gods – CD Version 

22 Mar

For those who may be interested, my Immortality of the Gods book is now available in a 6-CD audio version.

Year 10 HS2 – Head Quarters Visit 

22 Mar

Pupils AT HS2 are taking part in exciting activities, from designing a ‘whirly bird,’ to using the iterative design process in improving their ideas and planning.

School Council and Comic Relief 

22 Mar

This year School Council will again be supporting Comic Relief.

I saved the Tipton Slasher’s clock from being thrown away 

22 Mar

WILLIAM PERRY, the Tipton Slasher, may be the most famous son of the Black Country but very few of his personal possessions have survived to the present day.

Remembering the good old days of the horse and cart 

22 Mar

DO YOU remember when horse-drawn carts still plied their way through the Black Country's streets?Their numbers declined throughout the 20th century and after the Second World War they became an increasingly rare sight, but some traders remained true ...

Workin’ 5 to 9 

21 Mar

What A Way To Make A Living! ...

Meal Planning Monday 20th March 2017 

20 Mar

I didn’t get chance to write up last week’s meal planning post.

Sheffield Utd 2:1 Charlton Athletic 

19 Mar

Mr Five Pints invited me up to Sheffield this weekend so of course we went to Bramall Lane to watch Blades beat a competent Latics side 2-1.

First Timers and Record Breakers – 18 March 2017 

19 Mar

Welcome to this week’s first time parkrunners Runner Time Runner Time Joy MASON 27:21 Ruth JONES 39:01 David HOLYHEAD 29:26 Arron GREEN 40:05 Laura DAVIES 31:10 Georgina GRICE 40:10 Josh LAKE 32:03 Manpreet KAUR 40:39 Peter WILLIAMS 32:14 Eve ...

An afternoon of family fun at Hollywood Bowl Birmingham 

19 Mar

Last Sunday, we were invited over to Hollywood Bowl Birmingham for an afternoon of tenpin bowling.

#SlimmingSunday (Week 3 – 2017) 

19 Mar

It’s Sunday which means it’s #SlimmingSunday here on Life According to MrsShilts.

The Problems With Lake Monsters 

17 Mar

That's the subject of another new article from me , which deals with some of the stranger aspects of lake-monsters.

A Weird Side of Ufology… 

17 Mar

A new article from me on one of the stranger aspects of Ufology.

Imaginative play with Disney Cars Mack Truck & Diecast Cars 

17 Mar

Ever since Olly was a toddler, he’s been a fan of Disney Cars.

Buy Buy Love – This Week’s Secondhand Finds 

16 Mar

For a woman who spends a large part of her life shopping I rarely end up keeping any of it.

Dudley Canal Museum 

16 Mar

Year 6 definitely had the weather for their trip to Dudley Canal Museum  yesterday.

“The Hugest Monster In The Sea” 

15 Mar

Yep, another article, this one on the legendary Kraken...

Students remember Lauren in World Book Day fund-raiser 

15 Mar

STUDENTS at Grace Academy Darlaston raised 657 for the paediatric unit at Walsall Manor Hospital on World Book Day in memory of former student Lauren Wilkinson, a long time asthma sufferer who died in January.

New song tonight! 

14 Mar

Hi members, we’ve got a great new song for you tonight so don’t miss it – see you shortly...

Leo & Me 

14 Mar

A day without dressing up is a day wasted says me.

“A Surviving Form Of A Giant Ape” 

14 Mar

No, not the Yeti or Bigfoot.

New Build – Pupil Visit 

14 Mar

I applied to see the site as I used to be very passionate about architecture and I saw it as a great opportunity to get myself back into it.

Walsall librarian gets her first novel published 

14 Mar

GETTING your first book published is never easy.

Beacon’s LGBTQ+ Bake Off 

14 Mar

Following LGBT History month, Barr Beacon’s after school Food Club celebrated diversity with LGBTQ+ awareness by creating a multi-coloured, icing coated, rainbow-layered sponge cake.

Encountering Fenris, “The Wolf-Horror” 

13 Mar

That's the subject of a new article from me .

Vintage wedding party unearths mystery photograph from 1950s 

13 Mar

ROMANCE was in the air at Tipton Library on Saturday when the culmination of a three month project collecting Black Country Wedding photos came together in a special wedding party in the library.

Afternoon tea at Aria | Hyatt Regency, Birmingham 

12 Mar

Last Saturday, I had the absolute pleasure of meeting up with friends for afternoon tea and a good catch up.

#SlimmingSunday (Week 2 – 2017) 

12 Mar

Welcome back to #SlimmingSunday, the new weight loss and fitness linky from me, MrsShilts and Michelle from Mummy From The Heart.

A new way to work out with Fatkiller Club 

12 Mar

*A collaborative post As a health-conscious family, we do try and make decisions about our lives that are going to be positive, both in terms of our meals and also our fitness.

5th Anniversary Honours and Stats 

11 Mar

So that's another parkrun year done - it doesn't seem like five minutes since we did this twelve months ago! When we held our first parkrun at the arboretum, we had 55 runners and it took eleven months to break into three figures.

Fifth Birthday First Timers, Record Breakers and Hi-Viz Heroes – 11 March 2017 

11 Mar

Welcome to this week’s first time parkrunners Runner Time Runner Time Matthieu LEROUX 20:37 Kamal SHAH 39:08 Jonathan WALTERS 26:56 Luke ROWLEY 39:19 Alanna Louise BODEN 27:28 Karen KAY 40:36 Craig SIMMONS 28:34 Lisa HALL 41:03 Aaron MORETON 30:22 ...

The one with the Greatest Loser award 2017 #SlimmingWorld 

11 Mar

Ever since I walked through the doors at my local Slimming World group, I have wanted to do well.

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LONDON ATTACK: six tweets that show how the public sector comms stepped-up 

23 Mar

When a terror attack struck London the people who ran towards it were members of the public sector.

New Invention Community come together to create a HIVE of activity 

23 Mar

Back in October last year Walsall Council had only sufficient funding to keep one library open and that was the Central Library next to the Council House in Walsall town centre thanks to continuing austerity measures from Mrs May’s Tories at ...

Stationary travellers 

23 Mar

There is a good deal of concern at the moment in Brownhills West about a planning consultation currently being undertaken by Cannock Chase District Council, regarding many aspects of local development, but in this case about future provision for ...

There’s going to be a jailbreak… 

23 Mar

Hey folks - you all know that here on the blog I'm very keen to support charities, particularly ones working so hard to combat cancer and support those enduring it's effects.

Today’s Buy To Let Deal, 2 Bed Terraced House, Upper Forster Street, Walsall, WS2. With Yields Of 6.00%. 

22 Mar

A two bedroom terraced house literally a stone’s throw from the town centre of Walsall, WS2.

Models at the museum – a great event happening this Sunday 

22 Mar

I see from the events list that Aston Manor Road Transport Museum in Aldridge have a 'Models at the Museum' event this Sunday, 26th March 2017 -It starts at 10:00am and should be just the thing for modellers, transport enthusiasts, petrol heads and ...

Walsall Property and the Housing White Paper..Back to the Future Part 2 (2037)!! 

21 Mar

I had an interesting conversation with a landlord who called me last week.

Where does the water go? Find out this Sunday! 

21 Mar

An interesting history walk is taking place this Sunday, 26th March 2017 at Chasewater, entitled 'Where does the water go?' which takes a look at how the dam infrastructure functions, and some of the industrial history of Anglesey Basin and surrounds.

If you go down to Coppice Woods today… 

20 Mar

I've been contacted by a few people lately who've been worried about the woodland management and scrub removal ongoing in Coppice Woods (formerly Goblins Wood) just off Green Lane, between Walsall Wood and Shelfield.

So what’s all this about a Metro Mayor? 

19 Mar

In May 2017 a number of areas will be electing a metro mayor for the first time.

You were earnestly invited… in 1935 

19 Mar

While I go get some other behind the scenes stuff done (hopefully involving cake of some kind), I have here another gem from Tony Portman via the wonderful David Evans: A Walsall Wood Parish Magazine - from October 1935.

Walsall Wood Reserves melt Cadbury’s defences 

19 Mar

There was no first team match for Walsall Wood FC yesterday, but as I noted here, the Reserves were playing their Cadbury Athletic counterparts at Oak Park.

Walsall Wood Boys Brigade from the 1950s, and an enquiry from a new reader 

18 Mar

First up, an apology: the blog and 365daysofbiking journal have slipped terribly this week – sorry, but as people who follow me on social media will be aware, last weekend I really wasn’t well.

Sad news in the search for Andy Cooper 

18 Mar

In the period since Christmas, I've shared with readers the desperate search for missing Walsall lad Andy Cooper; Andy was well known and liked in Walsall where he grew up, but was living in Stourport when he went missing just after New Year 2017.

Walsall Wood Reserves at home to Cadbury Athletic this afternoon 

18 Mar

No first team match today, but the reserves are playing well and are at Oak Park from 3pm! Continue reading...

Standard job description 

18 Mar

The owner of London`s biggest and best free sheet, cat litter and fish and chip wrapper is looking to recruit a dynamic yet compliant editor to take the flagship toxic rag forward during the inevitable disintegration of Europe and the rise of a new ...

Chasewater Railway 2017 Industrial Gala this weekend! 

18 Mar

Chasewater Railway - the little gem of a preserved industrial railway right on our doorstep is holding it's annual Industrial Gala this weekend, Saturday and Sunday 18-19th March 2017.

Today’s Buy To Let Deal, Valley Road, Walsall, WS3. With Yields Of 6.35%. 

17 Mar

Staying in the same area as my last buy to let deal because the bargains keep on a comin’.

Foot stomping live music and a great St Patrick’s Day party tonight at the Chase Inn! 

17 Mar

The staff from the Chase Inn at Newtown, Brownhills have been in touch to let me know that there's a fantastic St.

Food Ratings in #Pheasey #GreatBarr #walsall #birmingham 

16 Mar

An unusual post but these are the food ratings for all the local places serving food.

Business Questions 16 March 2017 

16 Mar

As Shadow Leader of the House I asked the Leader of the House, Rt Hon David Lidington MP, a number of issues at Business Questions.

Meet your local coppers this Friday – and help Beat the Burglar! 

16 Mar

I received notice of this great event from Walsall Police via the excellent WMNow service a few days ago, advertising a bunch of events across the borough this Friday, 17th March 2017 where you can meet your local policing team and get help and crime...

GONK GONE: Stop the free stuff, there’s no money 

15 Mar

Not long ago a council launched a snazzy video for residents on how they were looking to make millions of pounds of cuts.

Urgent ! Please help find this dog stolen from Bloxwich 

15 Mar

Friend of the blog Jess Horsley has been in touch to ask me to spread the appeal for a stolen Star Pei dog, pictured above, that was stolen from her pal's garden in Bloxwich on Monday 13th March 2017 - Jess wrote: Continue reading...

Today’s Buy To Let Deal, 3 Bed Semi, Goldsmith Road, , Walsall, WS3, Yields 6.00%. 

15 Mar

Priced at £110000 for a three bed semi, this is a good deal.

Get in the sea 

15 Mar

It has only been three of four days but it seems that the sea swimmers of Clevedon featured on the BBC News ident have finally taken off their bathing caps and thrown in the proverbial beach towel...

Ravens Court – surveying the wreckage? 

15 Mar

I'm always careful here not to get folks hopes up unnecessarily, particularly on longstanding and serious matters that have occupied the blog for a long time - but I'm interested to note as many blog readers and regulars have done that for a couple ...

Walsall Property – Back To The Future 1981! 

14 Mar

Oddly, for some reason, as a 5 year old back in 1981, I remember some things quiet vividly and others not so much thankfully!  I can remember there was a lot of snow and black ice everywhere which had me and my father playing games such as taking a ...

Don’t miss Back to Backs – another brilliant Talk in the Wood! 

14 Mar

Don't miss your opportunity to attend another fascinating local history talk at Walsall Wood Library this Wednesday, 15th March 2017, when Birmingham Historian and National Trust Guide Clive Katz will be discussing the subject of the Birmingham Back ...

European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill: Lords Amendments 

13 Mar

On Monday evening I voted in favour of the two amendments agreed in the House of Lords to the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill.

Corporate Suits and Corporate Lattes 

13 Mar

My latest poetic effort; a tongue-in-cheek reminisce about those times spent in the corporate world from where the obligatory uniform of suit, tie, briefcase and filofax over the years swiftly became, no suit, open-necked shirt, smart phone and ...

Valerie meets with Cardinal Bo to discuss the situation in Burma 

13 Mar

I met with His Eminence Cardinal Charles Maung Bo Archbishop of Yangon and Ben Rogers, East Asia Team Leader for Christian Solidarity Worldwide, on Monday 13 March 2017 for an update on the situation in Burma.

Today’s Buy To Let Deal, 3 Bed Terraced House, Irvine Road, Walsall, WS3. With Yields Of 5.74%. 

13 Mar

A 3 bedroom mid terraced house on Irvine Road, Walsall, WS3, being marketed by Purple Bricks (01926 267 659).

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Tamworth Arts Club all set to perform Peter Pan 

20 Mar

PETER Pan is the latest rip roaring musical adventure from popular local theatre group, Tamworth Arts Club.

WIN tickets to see Olly Murs live at the Genting Arena 

16 Mar

YES, he's back! Pop's cheekiest chappy, Mr Olly Murs, is bringing his 2017 tour to Birmingham this March! The tour will support the pop sensation's eagerly anticipated 5th album '24 HRS', released last November, which features airplay hits 'You Don't...

REVIEW: Billy Elliot the Musical at Birmingham Hippodrome 

9 Mar

BILLY Elliot the Musical is a snapshot in time.

Shane Richie returns to the Belgrade Theatre 

9 Mar

SHANE Richie is set to return to the Belgrade Theatre to star as Peter James' famous literary Detective Superintendent Roy Grace in Not Dead Enough.

REVIEW: Shirley Valentine at Birmingham’s New Alexandra Theatre 

8 Mar

THERE is only one woman on stage for the whole of this Willy Russell comedy, but by the time the audience leave the theatre they know a great deal about ten others and are probably laughing all the way home.

Ricky Gervais set to rock Birmingham arena with hilarious show 

8 Mar

CONSIDERED one of the most influential British comedians since Charlie Chaplin, Ricky Gervais is returning to stage with his first stand-up tour in seven years: Humanity.

Billy Elliot the Musical at Birmingham Hippodrome 

6 Mar

BILLY Elliot the Musical, one of 'the most loved shows on stage today', is on the way to the Birmingham stage as part of its first ever UK tour.

Cult classic Trainspotting to be brought to Nuneaton stage 

20 Feb

A CULT classic will be brought to life on a Nuneaton stage by a company renowned for pushing the theatrical boundaries.

Review: Thoroughly Modern Millie at New Alexandra Theatre in… 

15 Feb

LOVE was well and truly in the air on Valentine's night as little Millie Dillmount, played by Strictly Come Dancing winner Joanne Clifton, eventually found her man, albeit not the one she first hoped for.

Jack Whitehall’s new show ‘At Large’ at Birmingham’s Genting… 

13 Feb

THIS year sees one of the UK's brightest comedic talents return to the stand-up stage as Jack Whitehall announced an extension to his biggest ever tour.

Prepare to scream for the Dreamboys 

3 Feb

PREPARE to scream for The Dreamboys in what promises to be their sexiest show to date when it arrives at The Belgrade Theatre in Coventry later this year.

PREVIEW: Wonderland at New Alexandra Theatre in Birmingham 

3 Feb

FOLLOWING sold out international seasons in Tampa, Texas and Tokyo, the multi Grammy, Tony and Drama Desk Award nominated Frank Wildhorn's Wonderland comes to Birmingham next week, as part of its UK and European premire.

Visit My Mosque Sunday 5th February 

29 Jan

The post Visit My Mosque Sunday 5th February appeared first on Aisha Mosque Islamic Centre .

Birmingham date for Kaiser Chiefs 

19 Jan

FRESH from a run of sold-out summer shows and a headline slot at this year's V Festival, Kaiser Chiefs have announced a brand new single Hole in my Soul and their first UK arena tour in two years in support of the forthcoming album Stay Together.

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A last minute Twitch – worth £4.50 of anyones money! 

23 Mar

Sometimes the celestial wheel turns in just the right way and the spirit guides that look after birders go that extra mile to put the universe in balance for them.

I know I said I wouldn’t, but I did! 

23 Mar

Wellll - it was a nice afternoon ( if a bit blustery ).

As Promised 

23 Mar

I said that I would keep you informed of any response received regarding the damage to the mineral line.

Wednesday 22nd March 2017 

22 Mar

Morning rain, 6c : Little Ringed Plover, Dunlin, Oystercatcher, Little Egret, Heron, Cormorant 6, Goosander 4, Wigeon 5, Teal 9, GC Grebe 5, Meadow Pipit 4, Pied Wagtail, Chiffchaff 2 in song, Collared Dove, Stock Dove 3.

‘Where’s Wally?’ – For birders 

22 Mar

Its Wednesday, middle of the working week and its peeing down - all day if the forecast is to be believed? I actually re-arranged my Swimming days this week in accordance with the predicted weather and it appears that I did the right thing.

March 20th – With the start of my beloved British Summer Time… 

20 Mar

March 20th - With the start of my beloved British Summer Time less than a week away now (not that I’m counting the days at all) it was strange to get as far as Brownhills on a normal time commute and it still be pretty much light.

March 20th – One aspect of springtime in Walsall that’s always… 

20 Mar

March 20th - One aspect of springtime in Walsall that’s always worth a mention are the fantastic displays of daffodils on public land - grass verges, open spaces and parks are full of cheery patches of which-growing gaffs, and are always a joy to ...

If you didnt know… 

20 Mar

You have just missed International Happiness Day! Well lets be honest, it would have been an inappropriate event on my blog.

Monday 20th March 2017 

20 Mar

0930 - 1030 rain, 9c : Little Egret, Heron, Oystercatcher 3, Goosander 8, Wigeon 7, Teal 2, GC Grebe 4, Cormorant 7, Meadow Pipit 2, Pied Wagtail 2, Chiffchaff.

March 19th – I thought today that it was time to check to see if… 

19 Mar

March 19th - I thought today that it was time to check to see if the swans were nesting yet at the Watermead in Brownhills, where they’ve previously raised several successful clutches - and I was surprised and delighted to note that the swans had ...

Sunday 19th March 2017 

19 Mar

0920 - 1200 cloudy/strong winds 11c : Green Woodpecker (photo), GS Woodpecker, Chiffchaff 3 in song, Bullfinch pair, Lesser Redpoll 12, Chaffinch 2 in song, Goldfinch 5, Greenfinch, Redd Bunting 2, Song Thrush in song, Collared Dove, Pied Wagtail 2, ...

March 13th – This is a terrible photo, and sorry about that, but… 

19 Mar

March 13th - This is a terrible photo, and sorry about that, but the mood I was in precluded concentrating on image quality; but the subject did very much cheer me up.

Saturday 18th March 2017 

18 Mar

0920 - 1100 windy, 11c : GC Grebe 10, Tufted 53, Goosander 7, Wigeon 2, Little Egret, Cormorant 6, Heron 3, Mute Swan pair at nest, Oystercatcher 2, Lapwing 2, Pied Wagtail, Chiffchaff 2, Lesser Redpoll 2.

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