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Environment & green action
21 Sep 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Hollybank Spinney on The Haunch Brook Pathways

Beyond Billesley Common, on Hollybank Road is the Hollybank Spinney. Also called the Hollie Lucas Memorial. The piece of land was named after Hollybank Farm. Named in memory of Christopher Hollins Lucas, who was killed during the Great War in 1918. Was a grandson of Joseph Lucas. Just a path and trees along the Haunch Brook. Just a small pocket of the Shire Country Park.

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Hollybank Spinney on The Haunch Brook Pathways





Beyond Billesley Common, on Hollybank Road is the Hollybank Spinney. Also called the Hollie Lucas Memorial. The piece of land was named after Hollybank Farm. Named in memory of Christopher Hollins Lucas, who was killed during the Great War in 1918. Was a grandson of Joseph Lucas. Just a path and trees along the Haunch Brook. Just a small pocket of the Shire Country Park.


Hollybank Spinney

Part of the Haunch Brook Pathways, which goes through Billesley Common, if you leave the Common at Hollybank Road in Kings Heath, and cross over the road, is a small section called the Hollybank Spinney. This is also called the Hollie Lucas Memorial. The path amongst the trees goes from Hollybank Road towards Ardencote Road, so it's not very long. There is another short path from Hollybank Road that leads to Chamberlain Road.

The land was named after the Hollybank Farm which used to be on the site. It was given to the City of Birmingham by the Lucas family, known for Lucas Industries, in memory of the late Hollie Lucas, a grandson of the late Joseph Lucas (1834 - 1902).

Christopher Hollins Lucas fought during the First World War (1914-18), which at the time was called The Great War. He was also called Hollies Lucas. He was a second lieutenant in the 8th battalion of the Prince of Wales North Staffordshire Regiment. He was killed in action at the age of 21 on the 10th April 1918 in Belgium.

His medals were sent to his parents, who at the time lived on Cambridge Road in Kings Heath. A road off Wheelers Lane was named Hollie Lucas Road in his memory.

 

My visit to the Hollybank Spinney on a walk from the Kings Heath High Street towards the bus stop on Haunch Lane near Billesley Common, during July 2020.

Approaching the Hollybank Spinney from Hollybank Road in Kings Heath.

Lots of trees and long grass.

Onto the path towards Ardencote Road.

Here's the sign about Joseph Lucas, and his grandson that this area is named after.

The path curves around the trees.

Near the end of the path, it's not very long.

Man walking his dog near the end of the path as it goes onto Ardencote Road.

Bit hard to see the Haunch Brook from here.

The Haunch Brook is down there. Goes under this tunnel towards Kings Heath, not sure were it emerges though.

Going back on the path towards Hollybank Road.

Trees and bushes everywhere. A little bit of paradise.

About halfway back to Hollybank Road.

Not too far back to the end of the path.

The Hollie Lucas Memorial on the left (the Joseph Lucas sign I saw earlier).

Near Hollybank Road, noticed workmen who were resurfacing the paths in Billesley Common.

The other end of the Haunch Brook from Hollybank Road.

Almost hard to see here too. Some unwanted rubbish on the banks of the brook.

One more path to take. This leads to Chamberlain Road.

This path was much shorter.

Trees all around the Haunch Brook near Chamberlain Road.

Chamberlain Road is a cul-de-sac with this turn circle at the end. The path into the Hollybank Spinney is straight ahead.

Chamberlain Road leads to Haunch Lane. Then just a walk down the hill to the bus stop outside of Billesley Common (the wait in my mask for the 76).

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

 

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70 passion points
Environment & green action
10 Sep 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Scribers Lane Site of Importance to Nature Conservation in the Shire Country Park

Beyond the Trittiford Mill Pool in the Shire Country Park is an area called Scribers Lane. It is designated as a Site of Importance to Nature Conservation (or SINC for short). It runs alongside the River Cole from Scribers Lane near Yardley Wood and Hall Green, and passes through Slade Lane. It ends on the Birmingham / Solihull border at some stepping stones. Two fords also pass through.

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Scribers Lane Site of Importance to Nature Conservation in the Shire Country Park





Beyond the Trittiford Mill Pool in the Shire Country Park is an area called Scribers Lane. It is designated as a Site of Importance to Nature Conservation (or SINC for short). It runs alongside the River Cole from Scribers Lane near Yardley Wood and Hall Green, and passes through Slade Lane. It ends on the Birmingham / Solihull border at some stepping stones. Two fords also pass through.


Scribers Lane in the Shire Country Park

Located near Hall Green and Yardley Wood is the Scribers Lane Site of Importance to Nature Conservation (also called SINC). The site runs alongside the River Cole from Scribers Lane (after the southern end of the Trittiford Mill Pool) then heads south towards Slade Lane. The site continues beyond that towards some stepping stones on a stream. If you cross over them you leave Birmingham for Solihull at Nethercote Gardens (and you can continue your walk towards Mill Lodge Park).

You can get onto Scribers Lane from Baldwins Lane in Hall Green. One end of Baldwins Lane leads to Slade Lane. The Shakespeare Line runs along the eastern side of the site, with two railway bridges that you can walk under. There are fords on Scribers Lane and Slade Lane.

2016

First walk through of Scribers Lane was during May 2016. During the May Day Bank Holiday (a walk that started from the Sarehole Mill Car Park).

Wetland near the footbridge close to Scribers Lane (what the area was named after).

A look at the wetland from the footbridge.

There was what looked like a guillotine lock on the River Cole.

Saw this heron, but the photo was not to clear as my camera focused instead on the branches.

Gates to the woodland walk.

View of the River Cole.

Cut branches to the side of the footpath.

Some planks of wood on a muddy part of the path.

Another view of the River Cole.

Got as far as Slade Lane. The fingerpost was missing the direction signs from here.

2020

A lockdown walk through Scribers Lane during May 2020. This time went further than last time (as far as the stepping stones).

A look at the River Cole from Scribers Lane.

The footbridge again this time everything around was overgrown, apart from the grass that was cut.

Lilies in the River Cole.

The trees on the other side of the river.

Hard to believe that this is in south Birmingham (but it is).

On this tree is a rope that kids can swing over.

Getting to the bridge on Slade Lane. Gate to exit to the left.

This time continued further than last time. The path was dry. May had a heatwave.

Cow parsley growing on both sides of the grass path.

Another view of the River Cole.

Was some nice natural reflections in the River Cole.

Out onto the path to the end of the nature reserve.

The stepping stones. I did stand on them, but didn't cross over the end of May 2020 (from the Nethercote Gardens side).

Close up look at the stepping stones.

That time we turned back towards the Trittiford Mill Pool.

Then back onto the normal path between Slade Lane and Scribers Lane. River Cole on the left.

Saw a red ball in the River Cole with a nice reflection.

Pair of sluice gates on the River Cole.

And the other sluice gate.

Later that month we were back in the Scribers Lane SINC having crossed over the stepping stones (on the walk from Mill Lodge Park).

The heatwave would last until the end of the month.

Blue sky and a lot of long grass.

Was a lot of long grass next to the main path from Slade Lane to Scribers Lane.

Near the end of Scribers Lane.

The guillotine lock again. After this we headed back into Scribers Lane to walk back to Mill Lodge Park.

More views of the River Cole which was quite shallow at the time.

Still cow parsley to see near the River Cole at the time.

One last look at the Scribers Lane area before crossing back over into Solihull. The suburban area near Shirley and Solihull Lodge.

Next post will be the fords on Scribers Lane and Slade Lane.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

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60 passion points
Green open spaces
08 Sep 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Kings Norton Park on the August Bank Holiday Monday

My first walk around Kings Norton Park in many years. This was after visiting West Heath Park for the first time. More people in Kings Norton Park. Kids in the playground / play area, also at the Skate Park. Was also a group of cyclists who I later saw ride past Kings Norton Junction (via the Recreation Ground). Was nice to be back.

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Kings Norton Park on the August Bank Holiday Monday





My first walk around Kings Norton Park in many years. This was after visiting West Heath Park for the first time. More people in Kings Norton Park. Kids in the playground / play area, also at the Skate Park. Was also a group of cyclists who I later saw ride past Kings Norton Junction (via the Recreation Ground). Was nice to be back.


Kings Norton Park

Previous Kings Norton Park post here: Kings Norton Park down the Pershore Road South.

After the walk around West Heath Park, there was time in the morning for another park walk, so next we headed to Kings Norton Park. It's been years since I've last walked around it (at least once). Other than skimming it down the Pershore Road South, Camp Lane or Westhill Road. This time went around the field towards the Skate Park. Briefly left the park for the Kings Norton Recreation Ground and Kings Norton Junction (where the Stratford-on-Avon Canal meets the Worcester & Birmingham Canal). Before later walking back to the park. Earlier in the park I noticed a group of cyclists meeting up. Eight of them later rode through the Recreation Ground towards the canal junction, and I had to wait until they all went past me. Both green spaces are on the Rea Valley Route and National Cycle Network route 5. It was the August Bank Holiday Monday on the 31st August 2020.

 

Starting with crossing this footbridge over a stream (it's not the River Rea). Just at the end of the Shrub Garden.

Saw this NAF (Northfield Arts Forum) sign about Domesday. The art of a stylised letter 'D' was painted by Thelma Coulson.

Looking back at the Shrub Garden towards the playground / play area and car park.

Into the field, and I noticed a lot of kids playing on the Skate Park ramps.

No paths around here so you have to walk over the grass.

The clouds were looking a bit grey, maybe a sign of later rain?

Kids on skateboards, scooters and possibly bikes. Not seen it this busy before.

Just the field and trees.

There was that group of cyclists meeting in Kings Norton Park. They later rode out towards Kings Norton Junction and beyond.

Sign on the Pershore Road South says that Kings Norton Park has been a public park since 1924.

Later heading back into the park after the walk to and from Kings Norton Junction.

The bridge crosses a small stream.

Towards the trees to social distance from people walking their dog.

Saw this sign about the Kings Norton Park Civic Garden.

The Civic Garden leads towards the Pershore Road South entrance. The park exists thanks to the Birmingham Civic Society when they purchased the land in 1920.

Another NAF sign, this time about the Grammar School. Suffragists mid-protest. Painting by Jenny McClaren.

On the footpath in the tree covered canopy. This leads towards Westhill Road.

Looking out over the field towards the playground / play area.

The path continues on to the steps to Westhill Road. This time I left at the end of the path and walked back towards the car park.

A wide open field with trees.

There was more kids playing at this play area, but only a limited number allowed at one time.

There is a small hill with a slide, and a couple of swings.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

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60 passion points
Green open spaces
08 Sep 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Return to the Warley Woods in June 2020

At the beginning of June 2020, we had a walk around Lightwoods Park which continued into the Warley Woods. This time I had a full walk around the woods. Even passed the Visitor Centre (it reopened in late May 2020). But plenty of people out getting their daily exercise. Or looking for those rainbow doors. The golf course was open again as well.

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Return to the Warley Woods in June 2020





At the beginning of June 2020, we had a walk around Lightwoods Park which continued into the Warley Woods. This time I had a full walk around the woods. Even passed the Visitor Centre (it reopened in late May 2020). But plenty of people out getting their daily exercise. Or looking for those rainbow doors. The golf course was open again as well.


Warley Woods

Previous posts from the Warley Woods:

 

Heading up a path from Lightwoods Park towards Lightwoods Hill. We entered the Warley Woods for the next part of this walk. It was early June 2020. First was a walk around the woods going in a anti-clockwise direction. Then crossing through the large open field. After that following the perimeter paths around the golf course (which was open again and members were playing golf once more). There was also some sculptures to see in the woods and I also found the Visitor Centre.

 

First view of the Warley Woods this time from Lightwoods Hill before entering the gate.

Proceeding to walk in the woods off the paths.

Tall trees everywhere.

Back onto the path.

The wide open field. People were either sitting on the grass or having fun.

The gates to the Abbey Road entrance.

Some sculpted wood that looked like sarcophagus's.

Now onto the path that goes around the golf course.

A pair of yellow flags on the Warley Woods Golf Course.

By early June some lockdown restrictions had been eased, this probably included playing golf.

Later saw this Sidewinder lawnmower.

The Visitor Centre near the car park. Both of which are near Lightwoods Hill.

A bench near the golf course, which was close to the Visitor Centre.

The Visitor Centre and shop were reopened on the 21st May 2020.

One last walk into the woods to see some sculptures.

There was these carved stone sculptures to see in the Warley Woods.

Also this area with picnic benches. There was bear sculptures to the back, maybe it was a crazy golf course for kids?

Another set of sculptures, more like carved wooden sculptures.

Another look at the drinking fountain.

Back on the path walking to the exit.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

 

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60 passion points
History & heritage
07 Sep 2020 - FreeTimePays
Did you know?

J.R.R. Tolkien and The Shire Country Park

The Shire Country Park follows the attractive and varied valley of the River Cole as a green ribbon for some four miles from Small Heath to Yardley Wood. It was named in 2005 to reflect Tolkien’s links with the local area. The ford at Green Road (formerly Green Lane) is one of the few remaining fords along the Cole Valley and would have been very familiar to the young J.R.R. Tolkien.

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