Birley councillors joined the picket line in support of DWP striking to save Eastern Avenue Job Centre.
The strike is in opposition to DWP’s decision to close the Eastern Avenue jobcentre. Closing the jobcentre will remove a vital public service from an already deprived area of Sheffield. It will also force the claimants who use the office, many of whom are disabled or have young children, to make a much longer journey to access vital services.
The campaign against the office closure is getting strong backing from Sheffield MPs and other local politicians as well as good media coverage. Paul Blomfield, MP for Sheffield Central, has asked further questions in parliament to find out from the minister what assessment has been made of the effect of the proposed closure of the jobcentre on the roll-out of universal credit in Sheffield. These follow the numerous questions raised by Louise Haigh, MP for Sheffield Heeley, who has previously tried to press the minister to provide answers around the closure of the site. Meanwhile the leader of Sheffield City Council, Julie Dore, has written to the DWP to make clear her strong opposition to the closure.
On 30 August Birley Ward Councillors Denise Fox and Karen McGowan attended the opening of a new café in Birley Ward called Remember When… The café was opened by Councillor Anne Murphy. The café is based in a building within the Frecheville Cricket Club on Silkstone Road and everyone is welcome.
Ruth the owner is serving healthy food and sweet treats in a happy atmosphere, where everyone can be themselves without judgement, regardless of age, gender, race, culture, background or disability. Food is based around home cooked and locally sourced ingredients where possible.
Ruth’s aim is to provide ambiance, surroundings and activities to stimulate memories and conversation, particularly supporting those experiencing dementia.
Further details can be found at:
Facebook: Remember When Sheffield
On Monday July 3rd, the three Local Councillors for the Birley Ward (Cllr Bryan Lodge, Cllr Denise Fox and Cllr Karen McGowan) will be spending time in the area to talk to local people about keeping safe and well and distributing free information packs for residents.
Over the last few month the councillors have been working with a range of partner organisations, including South Yorkshire Police, South Yorkshire Fire Service, Trading Standards, the Housing Service and local GP Practices.
On Monday July 3rd the councillors and partners will be at the following local Co-op Stores:
Between 10am and 12 noon – The Birley Moor Road Coop, S12 4WF
Between 2pm and 4pm – The White Lane Coop, S12 3GH
This is your chance to speak to your local councillors, and collect a free pack with information to help you stay safe and well please do come along and talk with them.
On Tuesday 15 November the Birley Ward Labour Party held a social event. This was an an informal evening giving members (new and old) an opportunity to meet over a few drinks and a chat and yes the bar was open!!!. There was also nibbles and home made mince pies thanks to Pat Emmingham our Social Secretary. The invitation was open to family, friends and neighbours and a very pleasant evening was had by all. We were joined by the Lord Mayor of Sheffield our very own Birley Ward Councillor Denise Fox. One new member that had recently joined the ward attended and we had another person joined the Labour Party on the night.
Spot the Birley Ward Councillor Karen McGowan (centre of picture just peeping out from behind a guy with glasses!)
Birley Ward member Ken Curran amongst supporters of the campaign
It was great to see such fantastic support at the campaign to say no to Grammar Schools that was held outside the Sheffield Town Hall yesterday. Over 600 signature were collected.
Lord Mayor of Sheffield Birley Ward Councillor Denise Fox’s son Jordan Fox and family friend Ray Mason will be cycling from Sheffield to Skegness on Saturday 9 October to raise funds for the Lord Mayors charities. Jordan says “I only started cycling at the beginning of the year and I got addicted straight away. I wanted to join a club and thanks to the great set of fellow riders at Sitwell cycle club, I joined. My other goal was to complete a 100 mile bike ride. What better way to do this then to help my mum who is the current Lord Mayor of Sheffield raise as much money as she possibly can for her four chosen charities which are close to her heart. The four charities are:
Army Benevolent Fund – supporting soldiers, former soldiers and immediate family of the British army.
St Luke’s – supporting a hospice which helps people through a difficult journey.
Sparkle – supporting disabled children, young people and their families.
Support Dogs – supporting a Sheffield based national charity helping children with epilepsy, physical disabilities and autism.
I hope you all give generously as I am going to kill myself doing this ride. Thanks to Cllr Karen McGowan for generously putting the accommodation up for me. Thanks to Cllr Terry Fox for being the support on the way down. And thanks to Ray Mason for taking me on the route and looking after me or killing me.”
If you would like to donate please go to Jordan’s just giving page on facebook
On Friday 16 September Councillor Karen McGowan, Cabinet Assistant for Housing and Planning attended the launch of Nightstop in Sheffield. This event was officially launch by the Lord Mayor of Sheffield Birley Ward Councillor Denise Fox.
Nightstop provides overnight accommodation in the homes of trained and vetted volunteers in the area. The Nightstop service is designed to stop young people, aged from 16 to 25, entering the cycle of homelessness and unemployment that can lead to this devastating outcome. Nightstop teams work with homeless young people, in partnership with local agencies, to help them address the issues that caused them to become homeless, providing family mediation and securing long-term settled accommodation.
At the launch attendees heard from a family who had been volunteering for 2 years and from a young person who said he had only been homeless for 11 nights thanks to Nightstop who helped him get his life back on track, but he didn’t know what would have happened if the volunteers hadn’t been there to help him.
The new service, is funded by a £200,000 grant from players of People’s Postcode Lottery. They are aiming to recruit 45 volunteer hosts to provide around 400 nights of accommodation in its first year. Once the service is established in Sheffield they are hoping to expand across South Yorkshire.
If you would like to find out more about volunteering for Nightstop Sheffield, please call 0114 278 7152 or email email@example.com For more details and photo’s see the facebook page https://www.facebook.com/NightstopSouthYorkshire/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1127375057346197
Over the last year your local councillors have been working in partnership with police to reduce crime and make residents feel safer and increase community prevention in our area. One of the initiatives provided by local councillors through the community LAP is a crime prevention pack. The packs have been offered in phases which started last year in Basegreen, Charnock and Frecheville. We are currently offering packs to those on the Birley/Thornbridge estate and over the coming months they will be offered to the remaining Birley Ward residents. The process is:
• Leaflets are delivered to the residents in the allocated phase with a deadline for requesting a pack. Requests can be made by telephone, text or email
• The information of the requests are compiled by the councillors.
• Packs are purchased through the community LAP from the police.
• Once packs are received they are deliver to the residents by the Birley Ward Councillors.
The packs contain items such as smart pens, window locks and useful literature about what householders can do to deter would be burglars.
The packs are a great reminder to us all to be on our guard and protect our property, we are glad to see many local people applying for the packs. It has also been a great opportunity for the councillors to meet and talk to residents about any concerns.
George with Pat Emmingham (right) and Councillor Denise Fox (left) on the Labour Party Stall at Hackenthorpe Gala in 2012
George McDonald sadly passed away on the 1st January 2016 peacefully surrounded by his family. George had been Clive Betts agent for many years as well as the agent for many councillors over a long period of time. His life was dedicated to helping others and he saw the labour party, the party that cared enough to make the difference. He was a governor at Charnock Primary school and Birley Learning Community. He also sat on the schools appeal panel. He gave a lot of his time to the schools and spent many hours listening to children read helping them improve their skills.
George will be missed by many but he will never be forgotten. He had an abundance of energy that astounded people younger than himself.
Thanks to all those who came to this evenings public discussion regarding a Birley Environmental Group.
Councillors Bryan Lodge, Karen McGowan and Denise Fox were all in attendance and answered questions from members of the public, before the evening turned into a group session on what current problems the community faces and how these can be addressed in future.
A second meeting will be held in January 2016. If you would like to get involved please keep checking our website for updates.
Photograph taken by Peter Wolstenholme
The above BBQ event was held at Club Baize on the 13th September 2015 to welcome new Constituency Labour Party members