Four Years of Playing out in Birmingham

Olga from ActiveStreets with Councillor Tony Kennedy and support from WM Police setting up on Main Street, Sparkbrook
Olga from ActiveStreets with Councillor Tony Kennedy and support from KIKIT & WM Police setting up on Main Street, Sparkbrook

When a new street becomes an ActiveStreet, playing out for the first time like Main Street in Sparkbrook, it’s hard not to get excited.  There’s been a few changes since 2013 when we first started playing out in Kings heath and Moseley, bringing the ideas from Bristol playing out to Birmingham, but the concept has remained the same, and following Main Street event last week, it’s great to see the enthusiasm for more.

From the very first road closures we had support from the council – from our Councillors Lisa Trickett, Martin Straker-Weld and (then not a councillor) Clare Spencer, from BCC staff – the legendary Sue Smith, and now from Karen Creavin, Garry Dalton and the amazing Olga!
From those first streets in Kings Heath and Moseley, ActiveStreets has spread over the whole of Birmingham, and we have made in total over 100 road closures for ActiveStreets earlier this year.

We’re planning a picnic at Calthorpe Park on 29th April to get together street organisers to share experiences and plan new events with the ever growing number of people interested.  Other organisations who have been involved like Parks4Play, the Library Service and Musicshakers may also be coming along.

On Main Street, Sparkbrook, the event was instigated by KIKIT and Balsall Heath Forum because it was recognised there was a drug and crime problem on Main Street.

BCC arrive to remove flytipping
BCC arrive to remove flytipping

Talking to neighbours it soon became clear there was also a litter and flytipping problem.  We were able to organise a quick litter pick and BCC picked up the larger items of fly tipping on the shared green space on Main street.  By the end of the day, children and adults who had previously lived on either side of the street had met, chatted, played, and stepped forward to organise the next event on Main street in the next month or so.

Olga with the KIKIT team on main Street
Olga with the KIKIT team on main Street

See more images from Main Street

Find out more about organising an event or contact Olga.

 

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