'Everybody charged in all directions'
Plus: The latest VERVE poetry event
Good morning readers — welcome to Tuesday’s Dispatch.
This week I’m engrossed in all things architecture ahead of our upcoming story on the Ringway Centre. You know when you get so into a topic that you keep seeing it mentioned everywhere you look? It’s seeped into other work too as yesterday I included a photo of an old housing estate in the briefing’s photo of the week slot, and I’ve been reading John Grindrod’s book Iconicon on my lunch breaks. (Unfortunately, he doesn’t include the Ringway Centre but he does include Holloway Circus Tower and the old library).
The r/Brum reddit page has also come up with the goods — a second thread on the Ringway Centre has appeared in the space of a few weeks, sparking a fiery debate. The topic is bubbling up because this Thursday, Birmingham City Council’s planning committee will re-consider its decision to let developers demolish the near-empty building and build flats in its place. Whatever your view, you can attend the meeting at 11am on Thursday or watch it online here. I’ve heard Grand Designs' presenter Kevin McCloud has put his support behind the campaign to save the Ringway, but whether or not that will persuade the councillors remains to be seen.
A bit of housekeeping: A reader got in touch with me yesterday to say The Dispatch had suddenly started appearing in their junk folder (clearly they aren’t using a very discerning platform!). I thought I’d give everyone the heads up in case it was happening to others. If it is, just click the button that marks it as “not spam” and all will be right as rain.
Other than that, I’ve continued to be astounded by the rate at which we are gaining new subscribers and paying members. At the time of writing we have 318 of the latter, and 9,760 free readers. Thank you so much. As always, if you want to support independent journalism in Birmingham, and make sure we can keep going, please click the button and join us. We’d love to have you.
Brum in Brief
⚽ Fans who saw crowds descend into violence at Sunday’s FA Cup tie between Wolves and West Brom have condemned the fighting. Clare Sidaway, who was at the game with her daughter and disabled son, told Radio WM: “Everybody charged from all directions — running into me, my kids, my son who was in a wheelchair.”
🌳 Sandwell Council has launched a public consultation ahead of plans to improve Wednesbury town centre’s public realm. They are proposing changes including refreshing the paving in front of the Town Hall and Art Gallery, and a new square between the bus station and Union Street, for socialising and events. Give them your views here.
⚖️ An inquest has found that 17-year-old Muhammad Hassam Ali died from an “unsurvivable stab wound to the chest” after which he was rushed to hospital on 20 January. A police spokesperson at the time said the victim was mistaken for someone else by his attacker. The inquest has been adjourned while police continue their investigations.
🗣️ Indie favourite VERVE Poetry Press hosts one of its renowned poetry nights at The Glee Club tonight. Former Birmingham poet laureate Casey Bailey will be performing. If you want to get up on stage too, you can sign up between 6.30 and 6.50pm.
🍺 Co-founder of the hugely successful Stirchley beer-makers Attic Brewery, Sam Fraise, will be in conversation with ProductTank Brum at 6.30pm. The idea is for people who make products to come together to share ideas, learn from each other, and make connections over a pint or two.