Posts Tagged ‘ Val Woodward

DRA December meeting

On Monday 10th December, Digbeth Residents Association held their final meeting of 2012 at the Old Crown in Digbeth.

The meeting featured presentations on the History of the Bullring Markets from Jo-Ann Curtis, Curator of the Birmingham Museum, and on the Future of the Birmingham Wholesale Markets from Keith Simpson of Technolink. Both presentations were recorded and will be available to watch soon for those unable to attend the meeting. Thanks to Rob at Media Dog for loaning us a light for filming.

The inaugural Digbeth Community Awards were also held at this meeting. We were delighted to present awards to residents Val Woodward, Adam Robins, and The Custard Factory. All three recipients of a Digbeth Community Award were recognised for their valuable contribution to the Digbeth community and support of DRA.

Finally, the meeting was followed by the DRA Christmas party. All the fresh produce at the party was donated by traders from the Bullring Markets, emphasising the need for us to fight to keep this important service in our community in Digbeth. Digbeth Residents Association will continue to support the campaign to keep the Wholesale Markets in Digbeth.

Digbeth Residents Association would like to thank the Old Crown for hosting our meeting, and cooking up a fantastic feast for our party! Thanks also go to the market traders who very kindly donated fresh produce to DRA. We are very grateful to our presenters, Jo-Ann and Keith, for taking the time to prepare two very interesting talks, and last but not least, thanks to all who have supported DRA in 2012.

Here’s hoping that 2013 will be just as successful for DRA! Remember that we’re always looking for volunteers to contribute to our website, help organise events, and even to take on committee positions such as Chairperson. If you’re interested in finding out more, register your interest by email to

Digbeth Bike Ride – TODAY!

Inspired by the Olympics? Have nothing planned for this afternoon? Dust your bike off and join us for a social beginners ride!

The last bike ride organised by Digbeth resident Val was a route including Sarehole Mill and was attended by 18 people. See some pictures below, along with some more information about today’s expedition!

Get out on your bike and have fun! Join us for a social ride and explore Digbeth.

It’s perfect for beginner and those that haven’t been out on their bike for a while. We’ll always ride at the pace of the slowest rider so no one is left behind.

It’s a good idea to bring some water and you may also want to bring a snack or you can buy refreshments so please bring some money. Wearing a helmet is advisable; if you don’t have one please do not to worry you can still take part. If you enjoy the bike ride and would like to come again perhaps you could look to buy one then.

Apologies for delay in adding details. I was waiting to check the weather forecast. Its not bad, so the canals should not be too muddy, and a picnic should be fun.

Plan therefore is a circular going to the canal via a few quiet roads in Lee Bank; along the Worcester and Birmingham canal to Kings Norton and then back along cycle route 5 through Cannon Hill Park and some more quiet roads to Digbeth.

Lets have a late season picnic in Kings Norton Park. I’ll provide some goodies – there is not a handy café.

Toilets in Cannon Hill Park, but afraid there are few elsewhere.

Parking usually okay on the streets of Digbeth on Saturdays.

Look forward to seeing you there!
Val Woodward

For more information, please check the Sky Ride website, but hurry, it sets off at 11:00!

Another Bike Ride!

When: Tuesday 24th July, 17:30-21:00
Where: Leaving from the Spotted Dog in Digbeth at 17:30

Digbeth resident Val Woodward is organising another fun and easy bike ride next week!

Eat, drink and chat at the Black Eagle in Hockley after cycling along the canals, returning to Digbeth before dark. The route is approximately 9 miles, and all adults are welcome to join in! Simply turn up at the Spotted Dog by 17:30 or canal-side outside NIA just before 6pm.

Please contact Val beforehand if you would like to try arranging the borrowing of a bike for you. More information on the Facebook event page.

Digbeth Bike Ride and Walk

When: Tuesday 26th June

Where: Meet at the Spotted Dog at 17:30
More info on the Facebook event page

Due to the success of last year’s cycle ride from the Spotted Dog to the Black Eagle in Hockley, Digbeth resident Val Woodward has kindly agreed to run another outing in 2012!

The ride will take the same route as last year, along the scenic canal network. Val is qualified to run bike trips, and has organised a number bicycles for those who do not currently own one to use. Please get in touch at to enquire about borrowing a bike for this trip.

The group is aiming to be back in Digbeth before dark. If you will be joining the ride, please email, or simply join the Facebook event.


When: Thursday 28th June

Where: Meet at the Spotted Dog at 17:30
More info on the Facebook event page

For those more comfortable on two feet rather than two wheels, there will also be a walk around Digbeth organised for the 28th June. Again leaving at 17:30 from the Spotted Dog pub, the walk will take in the sights and sounds of Digbeth, returning to the Spotted Dog before dark.

If you are interested in attending, please email, or simply join the Facebook event.

Donation from West Midlands Police

Digbeth Residents Association recently spoke about the work of the Digbeth neighbourhood policing team.We very much appreciate their work and support, through their regular attendance at our meetings.

DRA was recently awarded a £1000 grant from West Midlands Police, to help in our work to create a safer Digbeth by focussing on fostering a sense of community both within Digbeth and with our neighbours in Highgate.

PC Tracey Pickering is pictured handing over a cheque to DRA Chair Val Woodward. Digbeth Residents Association would like to thank  West Midlands Police warmly for this donation; we look forward to working even closer together with the Digbeth Team in future.

Photo credit: RnR Organisation™

The (animated) Digbeth Summit

The Digbeth Summit: Keeping Digbeth Different event is less than two weeks away. To help promote the event, Digbeth Residents Association has enlisted the talent of two second year animation students at BCU’s Birmingham Institute of Art and Design (BIAD) to create a viral video.

The event to be held on 16th February at the Custard Factory, will bring together residents, business owners, voluntary sector agencies, developers and council staff to discuss the future of Digbeth. Digbeth residents strongly recognise the need to work in partnership with local businesses to make the area a destination rather than an exit out of Birmingham, and to influence its direction.

Students Michael Price and Brian Lobeda jumped at the opportunity to create a video to promote the Digbeth Summit. Michael said: “Hopefully, our animation will help to show people that Digbeth is just as important to the city as the other districts, and that its legacy should not be neglected.”

Brian said: “I have learned a lot about Digbeth, especially about the Custard Factory and the Ty.Phoo factory.”

DRA Chair Val Woodward said: “It’s great that so many of the diverse sectors in Digbeth are working together so constructively. We are keen to support creative arts students and their contributions to Digbeth as one of the two main cultural areas in Birmingham. Our logo was also designed by a BIAD student and we have always been delighted with the quality of their work.”

The video created by Michael and Brian is below. For more information about the Digbeth Summit please click here.

DRA’s Val on BBC WM Radio

As reported on Wednesday, our very own Chairperson Val Woodward appeared on BBC WM Radio on Thursday morning talking about the St Patrick’s Day festival.

If you missed it, please click here to listen to the whole show, but you only have 5 days left to listen online!
DRA is mentioned in the news at 31 minutes in, and 39 (and a bit minutes) in Val is interviewed by Phil Upton.

Well done to Val and here’s to DRA gaining more local media coverage in future. Of course, we will keep you up to date with any information we hear about the St Patrick’s Day Festival 2012 as soon as we know about it.

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