Friday, 30 May 2014

Sunday X-press

Courtesy of Bearwood's no 1 music blog, The Hearing Aid (we are seriously not worthy!) we've found out that one of our favourites and in our opinion one of Bearwood's best bands, Miss Halliwell, are playing at the Sunday Express this weekend, on Sunday of course!

The gig's taking place at the Adam & Eve on Bradford Street in Digbeth, the music starts at 4pm and Derrick D and the Back Bones will also be performing.   For those brave souls there's an open mic slot too. 

Thursday, 29 May 2014

Bearwood Handmade Summer Fair

Bearwood's where it's at and the Bearwood Handmade Fair on Saturday 7th June is another wonderful example of this.

The fair organised by those very Crafty Muthas has found its home at Bearwood Baptist Church (Rawlings Road) and you'll be able to buy all kinds of homegrown loveliness between 10am and 4pm. We've been promised that Bearwood Pantry and Albert the Baker will help you keep your hunger at bay.

There will also be a raffle with all proceeds going to the very worthy soup kitchen Smethwick in a Stew.

Don't be daft, buy Bearwood craft!

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Thimblemill Library June 2014 Calendar

As soon as we received Thimblemill Library's events calendar for June we couldn't wait to put the details on our What's On In Bearwood page.  

Here are some of the highlights we've featured:

Jazz is definitely the order of the evening on Saturday 7th June with Mike Conliffe on piano and Nicola McAteer on cello.  Tickets are only £5 per person.  Nice!

Mary Bodfish, Bearwood's fountain of all local history, is hosting a walk around Thimblemill Brook on Tuesday 10th June. It's FREE and you'll be amazed what you'll find out.

You can tell summer's on its way (if only the weather would behave itself come on now PLEASE!)  when you find out that Thimblemill Library is holding its Sounds of Summer Strawberries and Wine evening on Saturday 21st June with Brandhall Community Choir, the Ukuele Union and local singer/songwriter Bethan Lawler.  

Don't worry Thimblemill Library haven't forgotten the younger members of Bearwood. Dangerous Dave (daft more than dangerous we think!) and his ridiculous sidekick Herbert Lemon on Thursday 12th June sound brilliantly bonkers.  

Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Dance To The Music!

With just over a fortnight to go until Bearwood Shuffle VI takes place on Sunday 15th June, the organisers behind Lightwood Park Bandstand’s mini music festival are getting into the groove.   

Three of the music highlights have been confirmed and we have to admit it's going to be a soul filled, damn funky, hip hop-tastic, jazzy afternoon.

The Atlantic Players will be showing how its done old-school style with their Rhythm and Blues and Southern Soul classics.  Now that's Stax appeal! The band have already supported soul legends such as Geno Washington, Booker T and Steve Cropper (of Green Onions fame!) and been praised by UB40's Brian Travers and Craig Charles.

Jazz lovers will know what an incredible influence the late great Andy Hamilton's band The Blue Notes have had on the local music scene.  At the Shuffle the Blue Notes old and young will be performing so we'll be able to see the past, present and who knows maybe even future line-up of these cool jazz cats.

The other highlight is definitely going to be Dantanna. They describe their sound as bringing the "Party To The People".  There's 11 of the people (now that's going to be a challenge fitting them on the bandstand!) and they’re on mission with their dancey hip hop sound!

We reckon you won't be able to stop your feet from shuffling!

P.S. To keep up with what the Bearwood Promoters are up to and to get the low-down of the Bearwood Shuffle on the 15th June (mark that date in your diary Bearwood!) visit the Bearwood Promoters' website, right here!

Friday, 23 May 2014

Get Fit For Free!

We live such busy lives these days that trying to cram everything in is almost impossible and one of the first things that can be easily neglected is keeping fit. 

The owners of the 24/7 fitness group realized this and had the fantastic idea of opening the gym 24 hours a day and 7 days a week.  

So whether you're a busy parent, need to cram more hours down the gym before you go on holiday or just need stress relief from your hectic job the gym on Hagley Road caters for you.

For the bargain price of £17.95 per month (£19.95 per month on a non contract basis) the 24/7 gym offers separate Ladies Only Gym & Sauna/Steam Room, free classes, free parking, free Weights, cardio and Resistance Facilities and a mixed sauna/steam room.

We've linked up with the 24/7 gym and have one month's free membership to give away.  

To have a chance of winning all you need to do is fill in the blanks in the following sentence and get your entry in by Monday 9th June.

I would go to the gym at  ..................... (give your preferred time)   because ..................... (give your reason for going to the gym at this time).  

Please email your answer to and put the words 24/7 Gym competition in the subject header.  

P.S. To get you in the mood....
One, two, three o'clock, four o'clock work out
Five, six, seven o'clock, eight o'clock work out
Nine, ten, eleven o'clock, twelve o'clock work out
We're gonna work out around the clock tonight

Thursday, 22 May 2014

Bearwood Promoters AGM

The Bearwood Promoters Team, the friendly bunch behind the Bearwood Shuffles, are holding their AGM next week and they would love for you to join them.  It's taking place next Wednesday 28th May at 8pm at the Kings Head pub.  
You'll be able to meet the team, find out their plans for the future and - as they're always on the hunt for likeminded souls who believe there should be more live music in Bearwood - volunteer to help out at future events.
P.S. You'll also be amongst the first to find out details of the Bearwood Shuffle that's taking place on Sunday 15th June!

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

The Wonders Of Warley Woods

Photo Credit: Simon Lea Photography
Simon Lea took this beautiful photo of Warley Woods at the weekend. It’s no wonder the park has been awarded the Green Flag award which recognises and rewards the best green spaces in the country for the fifth year running.

On Wednesday evening, 21st May, Professor Ian Trueman from Wolverhampton University is holding a guided walk around Warley Woods.  You will be able to learn about the flora and fauna and the walk covers both the open spaces and the woodland area of the park.  

Professor Trueman's knowledge of botany is insurmountable and in 2012 he was awarded The Wildlife Trusts' Christopher Cadbury medal for his services to nature conservation. 

No booking is required, you just need to turn up at the Pavilion for a 7.30pm start.  £2.50 per adults and children free.

Monday, 19 May 2014


Saturday couldn’t have been any batter!

Glorious sunshine and 99p fish and chips from our favourite fish and chip shop, Chamberlains.

 By the looks of things we weren’t the only ones to think so!

P.S.  Photos courtesy of Chamberlains Fish & Chips restaurant.  Chip-tastic!

Sunday, 18 May 2014

Jubilant Julie

The BAFTAs are on our TV screens tonight and Bearwood's very own Julie Walters has been awarded the Academy's highest honour, a Fellowship for her outstanding contribution to film and television.

Amanda Berry who is the Chief Executive of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts said 
"Julie Walters is one of the most talented individuals to grace our screens. She has the innate ability to draw the viewer in across any genre, captivating and entertaining with every performance."

Well done Julie, we're so pleased for you

Friday, 16 May 2014

Strange Pleasures

Bearwood playgroup mum and PHD student at Birmingham City University School of Jewellery, Sian Hindle, is holding her Strange Pleasures creative workshop next Friday evening, 23rd May, between 6.45-9.30pm at St Germain’s Church Hall on Portland Road. 

No don’t worry it’s nothing kinky Sian’s project is to explore how wearing contemporary jewellery makes women feel.  Sian explained that “contemporary jewellery is a form of adornment that is often very different from the jewellery we wear everyday.  It can express a range of ideas and concepts, is sometimes worn on unexpected parts of the body and is frequently made out of unusual materials.”

If you agree to take part in the project, you will have the opportunity to select and try on a range of pieces of contemporary jewellery.  

You will be asked to reflect on how you feel about wearing it, and to capture your thoughts and ideas using photography and a drawing activity.  Don’t worry, no drawing skills are expected – just the willingness to consider how wearing the pieces makes you feel.

Drawing, photography and cake (yes please!) are promised so if you are interested , please contact Sian Hindle ( or 07814 735011) for more details and to book your place.

Places are free but limited and booking is essential.

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Bearwood Bake Off!

If you’ve been inspired to dig out your mixing bowl and get baking after watching The Great British Bake Off the perfect competition for you is taking place next month in Bearwood.

Khakan Qureshi (his cakes are legendary!) and Samantha Cotton who runs the recently opened Upcycle Chic on Bearwood Road (where you can buy lots of upcycled loveliness for your home) have put their baking trays together and are hosting The Bearwood Bake Off on Saturday 28th June 2014.  

They are looking for the best cakes and cupcakes in Bearwood and are encouraging everybody to put their pinnies on and get baking.  

For more details and to pick up an application form pop into Upcycle Chic (420 Bearwood Road) or email Sam at

Happy Baking Bearwood!

Monday, 12 May 2014

Cheap as chips!

99p?  Really?  Wow!  That means you and your loved ones could have a takeaway for your Saturday night tea courtesy of the multi-award winning Chamberlains Quality Fish and Chips Restaurant (Hagley Road) for less than a fiver (that's if there's 5 of you of course)!  Bearwood Bargain Alert!

Simon, one of Chamberlains' owners, told us that the offer is for one for their normal small cod and chips and is to celebrate Norway Day in honour of the Norwegian fishermen who brave the frozen Arctic conditions so that we can all enjoy our cod and chips.

Get your order in early, this is one offer that must be caught! 

Friday, 9 May 2014

What a blinder!

We have to admit we're not the biggest fans of period costume dramas but last September when 'Peaky Blinders' burst onto our TV screens that all changed.   The drama was set in Small Heath and told the story of gang warfare, illegal book making and was set against a background of revolution and Irish terrorism. 

We got really bad withdrawals when series 1 ended and got very excited with the news that series 2 will be on our TV screens this autumn.  We don't really need an excuse to put a photo of The Peaky Blinders on welovebearwood (just mention the words Cillian Murphy and Mrs B needs to lie in a cool dark room!) but thankfully we have one!  A very good one too!

As part of Smethwick Local History's programme of talks, Dr Chris Upton of Newman University, Birmingham, who was historical advisor for the series (we definitely want that job!) will be talking about the making of the series, the role of 'historical advice' and the history of Birmingham gangs.

The talk's on at Bearwood Baptist Church on Wednesday 14th May 2014 at 7pm for 7.30pm start.  

We'll be fighting you for front row seats!

Thursday, 8 May 2014

Second Sunday Samba Sounds

The first Sunday Acoustic Sessions at the Samba Lounge on Three Shires Oak Road was such a success that they’re holding the next one this Sunday, 11th May. 

The line-up’s looking great with live music from Sayob Ibrahim, Amelia Wallace, Dan Hartland and organiser Paul "Prof.Firestick" Miller’s band, Mr Apollo. Get there early for the 2pm start.

Amelia (definitely one to watch for the future!) had such a great afternoon last time that she wrote a wonderful review for welovebearwood.  Read it here!  

Fingers crossed for the Brazilian dancing next time.  

Friday, 2 May 2014

Have fun in the sun!

With the weather warming up in perfect time for Bank Holiday Monday we thought we would put together our top 10 suggestions for this weekend’s Lightwoods Park May Day Festival:

1. Walk or catch the bus to Lightwoods Park. If you do have to bring the car please don’t park it in the street - the car parking at the top of Lightwoods Park is much closer

2. Shake some moves whilst watching Smethwick Fusion’s dance-off between the Jockey Morris Men and the Dhol Empire

3. Try Enville Brewery’s Lightwoods Ale or Black Country Ale’s Bearwood Best Bitter

4. Don’t miss the Punch and Judy Show or the Circus Skills Marquee

5. Get pumped up during the Sandwell Strongest Man Competition

6. Guess how high the skateboarders will jump during the Skatejam

7. Listen to the brass bands, djs, live music on the main stage and catch a preview of tracks from Pete’s Williams fantastic new album and sing along to Musical Youth’s  ‘Pass The Dutchie’

8. Support local businesses and community groups by visiting the stalls

9. Have a picnic and try some of the festival food for sale

10. Have a brilliant ‘IT’S GOOD IN BEARWOOD’ time