Birmingham City Council has published plans to build on a village green in Four Oaks, Sutton Coldfield.
On Saturday, there was a huge turnout of residents to meet Andrew Mitchell MP, who was accompanied by Birmingham city councillor for Mere Green ward Meirion Jenkins, Cllr Simon Ward the Leader of Sutton Coldfield Town Council and town councillor Jane Mosson, all of whom expressed strong support for the blanket opposition expressed by residents of Dugdale Crescent and surrounding areas of Four Oaks.
Cllr Jenkins said “This is a wholly inappropriate development – it’s nothing short of vandalism to destroy this village green which is a priceless community asset. “
Birmingham City Council has launched a consultation but Cllr Jenkins is very concerned “I fear that in the minds of the Birmingham Labour administration the decision is already taken. I ask them ‘what level of opposition in response to the consultation would cause you to think again?’ because I haven’t found a resident who is anything other than vehemently opposed and, in these circumstances, if Labour persists, then it means the consultation is no more than a cynical going through of the motions.”
Cllr Ward also referred to the ‘consultation’ “It is typical of Birmingham City Council’s attitude to local democracy, that the consultation should be distributed to such a small area and residents were given only until the 5th Dec to comment on plans to destroy a village green that has been there for generations.”
Andrew Mitchell MP said “We all recognise the need for more housing but the answer is not to destroy forever this valuable green space, which has been used for generations in the locality. Sutton Coldfield is consistently reported as being one of the best places to live in the UK and part of this is due to the excellent quality of our public open spaces. Dugdale Crescent has a special place in Four Oaks.”
Andrew Mitchell then said to local residents that he would be writing to the Chief Executive of Birmingham City Council to complain about the proposal.
The name of Dugdale Crescent dates back to Sir William Dugdale, who attended the battle of Edgehill in the English civil war. The land was gifted to the public for the purpose of providing housing after the second world war and specific provision was made for the maintaining of a village green.