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Articles about ‘Northfield area’

Closure of Longbridge Police Station

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£130m cuts force police to choose between keeping local Police stations open and recruiting officers, says Richard Burden as Longbridge Police Station faces closure.

West Midlands Police have announced that Longbridge Police Station will close at the end of May, with Northfield and Longbridge neighbourhood Police teams moving to work out of Bournville Lane Police station and the Weoley neighbourhood team working out of Quinton.

Responding to the announcement, Richard Burden, Labour Parliamentary Candidate for Birmingham Northfield, said:

Government cuts have put our local Police in the invidious position of having to either close buildings or lose more officers. With £130m of cuts already leaving West Midlands Police with 1,700 fewer officers and over 360 fewer PCSOs than it had in 2010, they had little choice but to choose officers over buildings.

I am confident that the Police will do everything they can to make sure that the loss of Longbridge Police station does not affect the service they provide to the public. Even so, the Government should not have put the Police in the position of having to lose the visible presence on Bristol Road South which Longbridge station represents.

Our region is also being hit unfairly hard. Even though the actions of Birmingham’s Labour MPs in Parliament helped stave off even worse cuts to our Police, National Audit Office figures still show that West Midlands Police has lost over £130m since 2010 – around five times the level of cuts experienced by leafy Surrey.

It shows a cockeyed sense of priorities by Conservative Ministers who clearly cannot be trusted to back our Police in keeping the streets safe. It’s another reason why we need a change of Government on June 8th and why we need Labour MPs back in Parliament after the election to carry on fighting for Birmingham – whoever is in Downing Street.

Gang Violence in South West Birmingham

Many people will have seen the story in the Birmingham Mail on gang violence in South West Birmingham. Here is my response:

“The emergence of these street gangs in South Birmingham is certainly cause for serious concern. I have been in close contact with the Police about it for some time now. I can reassure people that a dedicated Police operation is in place with targeted actions ongoing to disrupt the activities of those involved. A number of arrests have already been made. Just as important is the cooperation taking place between schools and the Police to divert young people at risk of becoming involved in gangs away from criminal activities that offer them no future.

It in no way undermines the seriousness of this issue, however, to emphasise that only a small minority of young people get involved in these gangs and that it would be entirely wrong to allow young people in and around Northfield to be stigmatised because of the actions of the few.

Let us remember too that these gangs are not what makes the Northfield area tick. There is so much that is positive about people who live around here – young and not so young. Nurturing, celebrating and taking pride in all that is good about our community is as important to safeguarding the future as is cracking down on criminal gangs.”

Help re-elect the local, independent-minded and trusted MP for Northfield

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In all the years I have been an MP I have always stayed true to the values that took me into politics in the first place.

My values are Labour and that means that I have consistently been a thorn in the side of Conservative-led Governments. But those same values also mean that I have never been someone who blindly follows party lines. I stand up for what I believe – first by working in partnership with the people I represent here in Northfield to make a difference to our local area, but also on issues ranging from the future of the automotive industry in the UK to promoting peace in the Middle East.

I also hope you agree that that having independent and experienced voices like mine in the Commons will be even more important in the coming years – whoever is in Downing Street – as Britain faces the challenges of Brexit and at a time when world affairs are more uncertain and perilous than they have been for generations.

So that is why I am asking for your help.

In the last General Election two years ago, the Conservatives spent a fortune on promotional material in their efforts to take the constituency of Birmingham Northfield. There was no way we could ever match the kind of money the Conservatives put in. We held the seat by hard work on the ground. But getting our message across still costs money and the donations we received ranging from small ones to large ones were vital.

There is no doubt that the Conservatives will spend a fortune in trying to take Northfield again and so once again I am asking for your help to get the message across and to win on June 8th .

So please give whatever you can afford – however much or however little that may be. I promise you that anything you give will be put to good use.

To help, you can donate through PayPal by clicking here:

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Alternatively, you can donate by:

• Online banking to – Account Number: 58124637, Sort Code: 60-83-01
• Cheque made payable to ‘Birmingham Northfield Constituency Labour Party’ and sent to John Stewart, 5 Ramsden Close, Birmingham, B29 4JX

Please note that under electoral law I can only accept donations from individuals registered to vote here in the UK and from UK–registered organisations. More details on the rules covering donations at elections is available here.

So please help me to remain one of those voices in the House of Commons. All donations are vital and I promise you that anything you give will be put to good use. Please give as little or as much as you can.

Looking forward to hearing from you.

February/March Newsletter

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Birmingham Northfield

North Worcestershire Golf Course

Residents living close to North Worcestershire Golf Course will know that at the end of February, Bloor Homes withdrew their planning application to build on the golf course. However they have now said they will be submitting new proposals shortly. In their latest notice they have said their new proposals are aiming “to address the concerns raised during the determination period. The amount of housing has been reduced and additional public space is now proposed.”

Locally, there has long been widespread opposition to building on the Golf Course and this has been reflected in cross party opposition amongst elected representatives of the area too. The City Council’s current Planning framework also opposes redevelopment and, had Bloor proceeded with their recent application, Planning officers were recommending refusal by the Council’s Planning Committee. Last year, the Government’s Planning Inspector also reviewed the overall Plan or Birmingham and also said he was not persuaded of the case to overrule the City Council’s policy in opposition to building on the site.

Bloor Homes are hosting a public consultation event next week. I would encourage local residents to go along and let Bloor know your views. Details here: Thursday 16th March, 1pm-7:30pm, Hollymoor Community Centre, 8 Manor Park Grove, B31 5ER.

Schools Funding

The news that we feared from the Government has been confirmed, Birmingham schools are set to lose a staggering £20m Read more

January Newsletter

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Welcome to my latest Parliamentary newsletter. In my first newsletter since Christmas and the New Year, let me wish you all a Happy New Year.

In Birmingham Northfield

Birmingham Council Budget

In recent weeks, Birmingham City Council published their budget proposals. Faced with over £800m being cut from the grant they receive from Government, the Council are in an impossible position with rising demand for key services like care for older people but without the money they need to fund those services. This in turn is increasing the already severe pressure faced by our NHS. There is no doubt that the grossly unfair way Birmingham is being treated by Theresa May’s Government is at the root of the budget problems which Birmingham faces in the coming years.

I made these points at the South Birmingham budget consultation that the Council organised. In a letter to Council leader John Clancy, I also put forward concerns that local people have been raising with me about some of the choices that the Council are considering in response to the financial pressures imposed on them by the Government. In particular I have urged the Council to do all they can to protect services that serve the most vulnerable people in our city – people hit by homelessness, mental health, drug or alcohol problems, and domestic violence – as well as older people facing isolation. I am also asking the Council to reconsider the level of cuts to our parks and ranger services and to make sure the problems which parents face last year in the reorganisation of home to school transport for children with special needs are not repeated. Read more