The Friends were delighted to be invited, by Bereavement Service staff, to join them on a rare opportunity to actually get inside the chapels !
They were joined by City Council officials, eager to view the newly fitted temporary roof and inspect the work already done. Everyone agreed that the visit had been well worth while and it stirred enthusiasm all round, that these magnificent buildings should not be allowed to deteriorate further. This is the present stance of BCC . Those present included- Alison Fumagalli (BCC Registrar / South) Bev Nash (BCC Registrar North) Andy King (BCC Principal Building Surveyor Building Consultancy Acivico) Coral Howard FBEC Vice Chair, Kerry Tinkler FBEC Committee Member, Steve Hollingworth (BCC Assistant Director/Regulation and Enforcement) and Dawn Harding (BCC Bereavement Officer responsible for Brandwood End and Kings Norton Cemeteries)
We are still celebrating being awarded a ‘Silver Gilt’ medal by the RHS for Heart of England in Bloom! We now have the certificate and here is a photo of it in our hands as proof!
Yet again can we take the opportunity to thank Nicola for her suggestion that we enter, the RHS for including Cemetery entries this year and everyone that works so hard to keep Brandwood End looking at its best both ‘in bloom’ and also on more practical levels.
Gosh, such a frenzy of activity in the cemetery. We are sure the RHS and all our visitors will appreciate it! Gates mended, benches varnished, beds weeded, roses pruned, hedges cut, notice boards washed, section markers scrubbed, litter picked…….. but hey…..we actually do all of these things all the time- but not usually all at the same time. Well done to all our supporters and committee members for stepping up to the plate. Fingers crossed.Can we invite anyone who is interested in the visit of the Judges to Brandwood End to pop along and join us. We will be meeting them at 3pm by the Lodge, on Wednesday 27th July.
Sarah has spent two weekends re varnishing our two benches- so why not come along and sit on them!
Those of you with an interest in Brandwood End Cemetery are cordially invited to a ‘Coffee and Cake’ morning to be held in the conference room of St Dunstans Church, Kingsfield Rd, Kings Heath. (Opposite All Saints Village Square) on the morning of Thursday 14th April at 10.30am.
We will be holding a short AGM at the start of this event, when we will present our annual accounts and report on our work in Brandwood End Cemetery.
It was lovely to meet some of the newly formed ‘Friends of Lye and Wollescote Cemetery’ as they paid a visit to Brandwood End. They were amazed at the size and the beauty of the tree lined avenues and monuments. FBEC have been in contact with West Midlands Historic Buildings Trust as they were seeking our advice on how we had formed our ‘Friends’ group.
Dudley Council transferred Lye and Wollescote Chapels to West Midlands Historic Buildings Trust, who made an Heritage Lottery application for the site to be renovated and it is now to be used as the Registry Office for the area with a resident Registrar. The Friends themselves were not involved in the funding bid or the restoration as work was more or less completed prior to their formation. We wish them luck with their group.
If you would like to see what has been achieved at their site you can follow this link .
We are afraid that the Friends and Brandwood End Cemetery will not be holding an event during this years Heritage Open Week as we currently lack the capacity to deliver an event to the standard of the one you may have experienced last year- but fear not! We hope to be able to participate on site next year and instead, in celebration of our 10th year as a Friends Group, we have installed displays in Kings Heath and Druids Heath Libraries that we hope you will enjoy.
Can we thank the staff at both libraries who have helped us in this venture and seem happy for our displays to stay in place for several weeks.
At Kings Heath Library we were able to add some historic photographs from the early 1900’s provided by the staff (from library archives.)
Christmas is almost upon us and the committee of Friends of Brandwood End Cemetery would like to wish all our supporters ‘Seasons Greetings’. Although we seem to have made no progress with the Chapels in 2014, due to the financial constraints being experienced by Birmingham City Council, we have never the less been busy on other projects in the cemetery. Can we thank Bereavement Services staff for their co operation, our project sponsors and all of the volunteers who have worked alongside us. Thank you all again and we look forward, hopefully, to more progress in 2015.
For many months now we have been awaiting the commencement of work on the pot holes along the cemetery drives. Earlier this week our Chairwoman got really excited as, from her house, she could hear the sound of heavy plant engines so she rushed round only to find it that was a large drain cleaning machine! Disappointment…. but then the helpful driver informed me that he would be followed within a couple of days by the whole kit and caboodle. Today it all arrived and work has begun.
Take care when using any of the drives as preparation work involves removing the road surface in some areas.
FBEC and the staff at Bereavement Services have received many complaints about the appalling condition of the drives and, whilst the work carried out will be limited, this must be a step in the right direction.
You are invited to the Annual General Meeting of the Friends of Brandwood End Cemetery which is to be held on Thursday 10th April at 7.30 pm. Please note that we have changed the venue back to St Bedes Church, Bryndale Ave, B14 6NG. We hope returning to this venue will increase attendance at our AGM as we need your support at our meetings. Copies of the Annual Report and the Audited Accounts will be presented and circulated to the members. Following the meeting these will be posted on our website www.fbec.org.uk.