The Stirrer

news that matters, campaigns that count

for Birmingham, the Black Country and beyond

November 2007

 

STOP AND SEARCH BRINGS TENSION TO SPARKBROOK

30-11-2007

The Stirrer can reveal that West Midlands Police were recently forced to hold an emergency meeting in Sparkbrook because of rising tensions over their stop and search policy. In one incident, Respect councillor Mohammed Ishtiaq was allegedly sworn at by an officer. more


COUNCIL DEFENDS CENSORSHIP ON SINGLE STATUS D-DAY

30-11-2007

Birmingham City Council has defended its censorship of an independent Single Status pay website – as revealed on The Stirrer more than 24 hours ago. They say it “misrepresents” the new deal being offered to staff. more


Get Out More................................Cricket Tickets

ENGLAND v SOUTH AFRICA/NEW ZEALAND

30-11-2007

Here’s an early warning for you...tickets for next summer’s Edgbaston Test Match and one-day international go on sale next Monday, December 3. more


Mick Temple's Blog
WHEN FASCISTS TRY TO STOP FREE SPEECH

30-11-2007
Does free speech extend to everyone, even those whose views we find extremely offensive. Mick Temple argues that it applies especially to them. more


HARDEN’S STANDS BY CRITICISM OF BRUM FOOD SCENE

30-11-2007

The founder of the restaurant-goers bible Harden’s has told The Stirrer he stands by his criticism that Birmingham and the West Midlands is “a remarkably poor dining out destination.” more


THE STIRRER LIGHTS UP WEDNESBURY

30-11-2007

Birmingham had the Sugbabes...tonight Wednesbury gets Stirrer editor Adrian Goldberg to switch on the Christmas lights. Work out for yourself who got the best of the deal. more


Blind Dave’s Blog

TO IRELAND…BUT NO GUINNESS

30-11-2007

Dave Heeley’s monumental attempt to run seven marathons in seven days on seven continents next year enters a new, and more intense phase following a visit to the Northern Ireland Institute of Sport in Belfast. more


COUNCIL CENSORS WEBSITE IN SINGLE STATUS ROW

29-11-2007

Birmingham Council workers have been banned from accessing an independent website allowing them to share information about the controversial new Single Status Pay and Grading Review. The publisher of the controversial site wants to know why free speech is being censored. more


HARD TO SWALLOW HARDEN’S SLATES BRUM RESTAURANTS

29-11-2007

Three restaurants have tied for West Midlands top spot in the latest edition of the respected Harden’s Guide – but Birmingham is dismissed as a “remarkably poor dining out destination. more


LIBRARY LISTING MOVE “AN ABUSE OF PROCESS”

29-11-2007

Campaigners fighting to preserve Birmingham’s Central Library have accused the City Council of an abuse of process in its efforts to secure an “immunity from listing” certificate for the building. more


NEW ENGLAND BOSS ANNOUNCED

29-11-2007

It’s not often that Stirrer readers have the pleasure of reading a real exclusive scoop. But they can today, courtesy of Laurence Inman more


BRUM MOVES UP TO TWO STARS FOR ADULT CARE

29-11-2007

Care of the elderly in Birmingham has dramatically improved over the past three years – an achievement recognised by the award of two stars today by CSCI (the Commission For Social Care Inspection.) As recently as 2004 the city was zero rated. more


MONEY FOR SOMETHING

29-11-2007

Paying back the money the government has committed to PFI schemes was estimated this week at £170 Billion over the next 25 years - cash that will tie the hands of future administrations. Barbara Panvel suggests an ingenious alternative to forever being in hock to the banks. more


TAXING TIMES AHEAD IF WE WANT CLEAN POLITICS

28-11-2007

Since neither Labour nor Conservative can historically claim a clean pair of hands over party funding, has the time come to cut out the donors completely and opt for state funding? more


HAVE BLUES FOUND THEIR OWN SIR ALEX?

29-11-2007

Alex McLeish arrives at St Andrews today with probably the greatest pedigree of any Blues manager apart from World Cup winner Sir Alf Ramsey. Although he was hounded out of Rangers, his record there and elsewhere stands comparison with the best. more


HEMMING SEEKS BOOZE CLUES

28-11-2007

Liberal Democrat MP John Hemming is demanding to know how much cash the Home Office expects to raise from an initiative which involves funding undercover Police to spy on drunk people in pubs. Hemming is planning a pub crawl as an act of civil disobedience. more


LET THE TRAM TAKE THE CRAM

28-11-2007

Health and safety seems to go out of the window when it comes to the tram observes Lynn Hawthorne. She loves it as a mode of transport, but hates the “cattle truck” mentality of its operators. more


Get Out More.............................Gig News

HALF MAN HALF BISCUIT (The Robin, Bilston Dec 3)

28-11-2007

The band who once gave up a Top Of The Pops appearance so that they could watch their beloved Tranmere Rovers are back in the West Midlands next week. Steve Beauchampe will be first in the queue. more


Birmingham Single Status

SECONDS OUT! RUDGE V BORE ROUND THREE

28-11-2007

Labour leader Sir Albert Bore accuses Alan Rudge, the Cabinet Member responsible for introducing the Single Status Pay And Grading Review in Birmingham, of misleading the public. Check out the latest instalment in their increasingly bitter dispute. more


CONSERVATION CONSTERNATION

28-11-2007

We’ve got a great architectural heritage, but how much care do we take of it? Not enough argues Beefheart. more


WHITBY’S CHIEF OF STAFF NORTH HEADS SOUTH

27-11-2007

Mike Whitby’s right hand man James North is quitting to return to London. His departure will be a significant blow for the Birmingham City Council leader who had come to rely on his Chief of Staff as a useful buffer zone keeping the press at bay. more


GORDON BROWN’S AIR OF RESIGNATION

27-11-2007

Another week, another resignation close to government – this time Peter Watt, the General Secretary of the Labour Party. Gordon Brown must be wondering how many other high profile figures have to quit before he’s forced to announce his own departure. more


Brum Council Racism Verdict 1

SACKING CALL AFTER COUNCIL LOSES RACISM APPEAL

27-11-2007

Senior managers and elected representatives involved in the unfair and racist dismissal of Birmingham City Council worker Paul Samuels should be sacked according to an anonymous e-mail circulated to all 120 of the city’s councillors. more


Brum Council Racism Verdict 2

“WE WERE RIGHT TO APPEAL” – CITY LEGAL OFFICER

27-11-2007

Birmingham Council’s Chief Legal Officer Mirza Ahmad has defended the city’s decision to appeal against a racism verdict in the Paul Samuel’s case – even though they lost again. Samuel’s claim at an Industrial Tribunal that he was unfairly dismissed and victimised was also upheld. more


Get Out More....................................Gig News

STRICTLY COME DANCING LIVE

27-11-2007

You just can’t get enough of it can you? Two nights of twinkle-toed action at the NEC has suddenly ballooned to four with the addition of extra tour dates for the show based on the successful BBC TV series. more


Military Families Blog

INQUESTION MARKS

27-11-2007

Civilian inquests are usually carried out in a matter of weeks, but as Carol Jones reveals, military familes who’ve lost a loved one often have to wait months or even years to find out exactly what happened. Discovering the truth can cost them money too. more


BATTLE OF THE BINS DIVIDES BRUM COALITION

27-11-2007

Conservative and Liberal Democrat councillors in Birmingham’s ruling “Progressive Partnership” have found themselves at war – over the unlikely subject of wheelie bins. more


Martin Longley's New York Music Blog

JOHN HOLLENBECK LARGE ENSEMBLE/CLAUDIA QUINTET

27-11-2007

Maverick Brummie musician and critic Martin Longley is currently checking out the jazzier sounds of NYC. Drummer and composer John Hollenbeck has been showing him his different sizes at the Cornelia Street Cafe and the Jazz Standard. more


VICTIMISED COUNCILLOR SAYS LABOUR “TURNED MUSLIMS TO TERRORISM”

26-11-2007

The former Birmingham Labour councillor who became a victim of his own party’s racism has been talking for the first time about his ten-year battle to clear his name. Raghib Ahsan says he’s still angry, and believes the discrimination he suffered may have pushed other Muslims towards terrorism. more


LOLA ALMUDEVAR R.I.P.

26-11-2007

Former Midlands Today and BBC WM journalist Lola Almudevar has died at the age of 29 in a car crash in Bolivia. Stirrer editor Adrian Goldberg pays a personal tribute to a colleague. more


A LOAD OF BOLLARDS

26-11-2007

These men are installing bollards to stop cars parking on the pavement outside a sports bar in Birmingham city centre. They are cleaning up at the end of the day. How long do you think it will be before they realise? more


MIGRANT WORKERS “DON’T KEEP WAGES DOWN”

26-11-2007

There’s no evidence that migrant workers are holding down wage levels in the West Midlands – even though this is one of the most commonly used arguments against new arrivals. Research published today suggests they mostly have a positive impact on the economy. more


TODAY’S THE DAY TO STAND UP FOR THE BLACK COUNTRY

26-11-2007

Today’s the day to Stand Up For The Black Country, as online voting begins in the competition that could land Sandwell, Dudley, Walsall and Wolverhampton with £50 million from the National Lottery. more


Poet's Corner

WHEN IT’S GONE IT’S GONE

26-11-2007

The Stirrer’s poet laureate Brendan Hawthorne has rhymes adorning the giant new Morrisons opening in Wednesbury today – a sure sign of changing times. As is the fact that the old Black Country factory where he spent the first 18 years of his working life has just been demolished to make way for housing. more


Terry’s Baggies Blog

BAGGIES PAY THE PENALTY

26-11-2007

Tony Mowbray’s first nil-nil as Albion boss takes his team back into the automatic promotion places. But as Terry Wills observes, a late missed penalty against “the Dingles” has taken the edge off the achievement. more


Callum’s Blues Blog

POMPEY CIRCUMSTANCE

26-11-2007

There are reports that Scotland boss Alex McLeish is being eyed by the St Andrews board as a successor to Steve Bruce, but as Callum O’Connell reports, Blues currently have no manager – and no idea where the next points are coming from. more


Get Out More............................................Gig Review

BILL BAILEY (NIA, 23 Nov)

26-11-2007

Paula Elenor would like to nominate Bill Bailey for The Stirrer's title of Honorary Brummie and Black Country Comic on the Year on the evidence of his show at the NIA on Friday. And yes, that does mean she's specifically excluding Frank Skinner. more


ARTSFEST SURVIVES AS BRUM LOOKS TO MUSIC FESTIVAL

24-11-2007

The future of Birmingham’s Artsfest – threatened with the axe earlier this year – has now been secured. Ray Hassall, the city’s Cabinet Member for Leisure also told Stirrer TV he’s hoping to create a music festival to add to the international dance event announced this week. more


WEST BROM CONSERVATIVES DO THE SPLITS

24-11-2007

The Stirrer has discovered an amazing split in the ranks of West Bromwich Conservatives. A group of traditionalists led by a former Sandwell Mayor have created a breakaway branch, while the main constituency party is led by former Labour supporters. more


Get Out More................................................Gig News

BARBARA NICE (MAC, November 29)

24-11-2007

Fresh from her Edinburgh triumph Birmingham comedienne Barbara Nice heads to MAC next Wednesday – and she has our unqualified recommendation. more


EURO 2008: FEEL THE PAIN

24-11-2007

England’s defeat by Croatia has left a nation in despair – or at least a state of mild irritation – over our failure to qualify for Euro 2008. Damien Doran’s been ear-wigging to the players’ reaction. more


Mick Temple's Blog

SCHOOL’S OUT FOR STOKIES

24-11-2007

The Stirrer’s resident Stokie Mick Temple lives in a city which doesn’t just row about having a Mayor - it’s actually got one. And he’s got grand designs on the local education system. Is the kind of executive control we want in Birmingham? more


HAPPY BIRTHDAY BLIND DAVE

24-11-2007

West Brom marathon runner and Stirrer blogger Blind Dave Heeley is celebrating his 50th birthday tonight at Bescot Stadium. more


BRUM COUNCIL LOSES APPPEAL IN RACISM ROW

23-11-2007

Birmingham City Council has unsuccessfully appealed an Industrial Tribunal verdict, which ruled that it victimised and racially discriminated against a black former worker. The city's chief legal officer, one of his senior officials and Liberal Democrat councillor were all implicated in the judgement. more


Single Status 1

RUDGE ACCUSES BORE OF "HYPOCRISY AND IRRESPONSIBILITY"

23-11-2007

Alan Rudge, the Cabinet Member responsible for introducing Birmingham Council's controversial Single Status/Pay and Grading Review has issued a stinging rebuke to the city's Labour leader Sir Albert Bore. It follows Sir Albert's call for the whole process to be halted. more


Single Status 2

STAFF FIGHTBACK WITH SINGLE STATUS WEBSITE

23-11-2007

Disgruntled Birmingham Council staff have a new focus for their dissatisfaction with the city's Pay and Grading Review - a new website set up to enable workers to compare how fairly their new wages have been evaluated. more


Stirrer TV

MAJOR NEW DANCE FESTIVAL FOR BRUM

23-11-2007

Birmingham will be hosting a major new dance festival next April and May, drawing in companies from 14 countries. From the contemporary moves of leading British choreographer Akram Khan to the Kirov Ballet, it promises to be a treat for anyone interested in the art form. more


Get Out More....................................Gig News

DOLLY PARTON (NIA, 2 July 2008)

23-11-2007

Blimey, we can't get rid of her. Fresh from a UK tour that included an NEC date earlier this year, the self-styled "Backwoods Barbie" Dolly Parton returns for another show next summer, this time at the NIA. more


THERE WENT THE SUMMER…

23-11-2007

…Or did it? Richard Nevin is bemused by the wailing and gnashing of teeth accompanying England's exit from the European Championships. more


Martin Longley's Global Music Blog

GEORGE WEIN & THE NEWPORT ALL-STARS(Dizzy's Club, New York)

23-11-2007

George Wein is probably most famous as the founder and promoter of the Newport Jazz Festival on Rhode Island, but as Martin Longley's discovers he's a pretty mean pianist and band leader. more


McLAREN SACKED

22-11-2007 09:42

The England football manager Steve McLaren has been sacked just 18 months into a four year contract. He will get a £2.5 million pay off. Who should repace him? Discuss it now on The Stirrer forum.


McLAREN MUST GO.....AND SO MUST THE GREAT EXPECTATIONS

22-11-2007

So England have missed out on qualification for the European Championships, and head coach Steve McLaren has failed in his basic duty to steer England to a major finals. He can have no complaints if he loses his job....but once he goes, so must the irrational expectations heaped on the national team. more


HAVE LIBRARY BOSSES COOKED THE BOOKS?

22-11-2007

The Stirrer doubts about the cost of Birmingham's new Central Library were recently pooh-poohed by the city's chief executive Stephen Hughes, but have now been backed by a powerful group of councillors. more


Stirrer TV

BRUM NOVELIST UP FOR MORE HONOURS

22-11-2007

And still the accolades keep rolling in for Birmingham novelist Catherine O' Flynn. Her debut "What Was Lost" has just been nominated for the Costa First Novel Award and the Guardian First Book Prize. more


Princes End By-Election

NO JOB FOR LABOUR'S BOB WITH THE LIB DEMS

22-11-2007

The agent for Labour's candidate in the Princes End by-election has told The Stirrer - contrary to our report yesterday - that he hasn't been collecting nominations for the Liberal Democrats. But he admits that party supporters have been helping their rivals. more


PUGINGENUITY

22-11-2007

He's one of Britain's finest architects, and - according to Laurence Inman - his finest work was done in Birmingham. more


CUTTING COMMENTS

22-11-2007

This week's child benefit cock up is only the latest in a long line of government mishaps. Barbara Panvel traces the problems back to cost-cutting - which has also impacted on some of Birmingham's neediest citizens. more


Get Out More..........................Gig Review

FRANK SKINNER (NIA)

22-11-2007

The Oldbury comic's short season at the NIA has attracted much interest from Stirrer readers. Yesterday Richard Nevin reckoned the NIA was too large for comic intimacy, but Matt Danks revels in the rudeness. more


Military Families Blog

THE LAST POST

22-11-2007

Earlier this week, Carol Jones shared her thoughts on the second anniversary of the death of her son Sergeant John Jones in Iraq. Now she wants to make sure he puts his stamp on history. more


DARLING'S SLIPPED DISC MUST KILL OFF ID CARDS

21-11-2007

The astonishing revelation that the records of all 25 million claimants of child benefit in Britain have gone missing doesn't only open up virtually every family in the country to the risk of fraud. It effectively kills off any argument for ID cards. more


Princes End By-Election

LIB LAB PACT TO KEEP OUT THE BNP

21-11-2007

The Stirrer has discovered details an amazing Lib-Lab pact in Princes End ahead of next month's Sandwell Council by-election. Several prominent Labour supporters, including a former councillor have been actively promoting their rival party with the blessing of fellow socialists. more


"REJECT NEW CONTRACTS" - ADVICE TO BRUM COUNCIL WORKERS

21-11-2007

Birmingham Council workers are being urged to reject their new contracts - even if it theoretically means they could be dismissed. more


LADYWOOD LABOUR CANDIDATES - RUNNERS AND RIDERS

21-11-2007

The starter's gun hasn't even sounded, but the race to replace Clare Short in Ladywood is definitely on. Only women need apply, and we know that some party members have a preference for an ethnic minority candidate. Let The Stirrer mark your card on the likely runners. more


Get Out More.........................Gig Review

FRANK SKINNER (NIA Academy)

21-11-2007

Black Country comic legend hits the road again, just to prove he can still do it at the age of 50. The NIA is a far cry from the Hare and Hounds where he learned his craft, though, and Richard Nevin reckons big isn't always beautiful. more


THE MAN WHO MISTOOK HIS HAT FOR HIS WIFE - AND OTHER TRUE STORIES

21-11-2007

Top Birmingham neurologist Dr David Nicholl recalls a meeting with one of his heroes - the top US neurologist (and author) Oliver Sacks. more


Stirrer TV

IRAQ SOLDIER'S MOM - "MY SON DIED FOR NOTHING"

20-11-2007

Today is the second anniversary of the death of Sergeant John Jones, a soldier from Castle Bromwich who was killed by a roadside bomb in Basrah. Today his mother Carol tells us why she thinks her son lost his life in vain. more


TV STAR TARGETS BLUES TAKEOVER

20-11-2007

The Stirrer can reveal that Birmingham City have been lined up as a takeover target by a well-known TV personality. After the loss of manager Steve Bruce, St Andrews surely will provide a welcome home to Mr Bungle. more


LIBRARY BOSS - "WE'RE COOKING THE CITY'S HERITAGE"

20-11-2007

The head of Birmingham's Libraries has warned that the city's archives are being "cooked" because the current storage system isn't up to date. But although Brian Gambles argues passionately for a new building, he admits the current library could be updated if necessary. more


MINISTER "DISAPPOINTED" OVER COUNCIL'S MAYOR STANCE

20-11-2007

The Stirrer can reveal that almost 10,000 signatures have been collected by the Birmingham Mail in their campaign to secure a mayoral referendum. Mail editor Steve Dyson was in London yesterday meeting Justice Minister Michael Wills who was "disappointed" by the City Council's refusal to assist with the count. more


WEST MIDLANDS POLICE "HELPING PREACHERS OF HATE"

20-11-2007

Channel 4 has accused West Midlands Police of helping "preachers of hate" by asking TV regulator Ofcom to investigate the "Undercover Mosque" documentary. The programme makers, Hardcash Productions, were cleared yesterday of attempting to mislead viewers. more


Get Out More.........................................Gig News

GOLDBLADE/TAKE THE 5th (Hare and Hounds, Nov 24)

20-11-2007

Not so much a gig as a show of soccer solidarity as the Birmingham Boys in Brown - a mixture of Blues and Villa fans - get together to raise cash for their favourite adopted "other" team, St Pauli of Hamburg. more


RED FACES FOR WEST MIDLANDS POLICE IN C4 MOSQUE PROBE

19-11-2007

Channel 4's "Undercover Mosque" investigation, much of which was filmed in Birmingham, has been vindicated by an Ofcom investigation. The telly regulator's verdict announced today is a huge embarrassment for West Midlands Police, which complained the documentary misled viewers. more


"PUB CRAWL TO CHALLENGE LAW" - MP HEMMING

19-11-2007

Birmingham MP John Hemming is proposing a pub crawl as an act of civil disobedience following reports that West Midlands Police are planning to spy on boozy customers. Hemming believes that a clampdown on innocent drinkers has already started after a recent incident at one of his favourite watering holes. more


The Stirrer Cancer Campaign

CANCER DRUG DELIGHT AS ELEANOR WINS POSTCODE LOTTERY

19-11-2007

Lung cancer victim Eleanor Brown whose case has been championed by The Stirrer has been told she will receive the controversial drug Tarceva - which is readily available in Scotland but rationed in England. more


Last Night's Telly

THE BLAIR YEARS (BBC1)

19-11-2007

At some point there'll be a pointed TV assessment of Tony Blair's record-breaking ten years as a Labour Prime Minister - but this wasn't it. The problem is partly that his successor is still in power and partly that this oddly edited series of interviews and newsclips never quite gets to grips with its slippery subject. more


PRINCES END - NO END TO THE INTRIGUE

19-11-2007

Following The Stirrer's revelations of Labour infighting over the choice of candidate for the Princes End by-election next month in Sandwell comes useful clarification of the role local MP Adrian Bailey. more


Get Out More.........................................Gig Review

VIC GODARD AND SUBWAY SECT (Firebug, Leicester)

19-11-2007

It's probably a quarter of a century since Vic Godard trod the boards in the West Midlands, so here's a plea to any local promoter tuning in. Do us all a favour and get this bona fide punk legend booked up now. more


Poet's Corner

WHALE MEAT AGAIN (IN THE NAME OF SCIENCE)

19-11-2007

It looks like humpbacked whale is on the menu again as the Japanese whaling fleet sets forth for the Antarctic. They'll no doubt be carrying out "research" into the beautiful songs of these wonderful creatures and not just killing them for food. Oh no. Brendan Hawthorne leads the lament more


The Stirrer Podcast

BRITISH JOBS FOR...ENGLISH FOOTBALLERS????

17-11-2007

This week's Stirrer Podcast investigates the curious involvement of the government in trying to get more English footballers into the Premier League to help the national team. How come Downing Street doesn't raise a finger when jobs in car factories or call centres are outsourced? more


CLAMPING DOWN ON THE CLAMPERS

17-11-2007

Car clamping is one of those perennial hard-luck stories that seems to have slipped off the political agenda. We can't think why, after hearing this typical tale of woe from a Birmingham woman. more


Dave Woodhall's Villa Blog

THE SMELL OF NAPALM IN THE MORNING

17-11-2007

West Midlands Police Federation boss Paul Tonks is advocating 10am kick-offs to solve the problems at Blues/Villa derbies. In this provocative article, Dave Woodhall predicts it wouldn't the slightest difference. more


Mick Temple's Blog

THE FAB FIVE

17-11-2007

Think our universities are hotbeds of radical leftie thinking? Think again. Professor Mick Temple names his five fave political icons - and Maggie and Supermac are among them. more


Get Out More.........................Gig News
THE RAVEONETTES (Nov 17, Barfly)

17-11-2007

They're a band who are under the influence...and our music guru Paul Samuels knows who by. Doesn't stop him having a great time though. more


BEND THE RULES LIKE BECKHAM

17-11-2007

Unfit player miraculously returns to the national team despite not having played for his club side lately. It could only happen to David Beckham observes Richard Nevin. more


TWO WORLDS CLASH

17-11-2007

Imagine you're in a covers band and then one of the real-life heroes you're imitating suddenly leaps on stage to join in the fun. Miles Barter reports on an amazing dream come true for a West Midlands Clash tribute act. more


Exclusive

BORE CALLS FOR HALT TO COUNCIL PAY REVIEW

16-11-2007

Birmingham Labour leader Sir Albert Bore has called for an immediate freeze of the Council's controversial pay and grading review. He's accused the ruling Lib Dem/Tory coalition of being dishonest in its presentation of the figures, and says that many more workers will be worse off than has been admitted. more


LEFT WINGER TO REPRESENT LABOUR SHOCK

16-11-2007

As the runners and riders jostle for the Princes End seat in Sandwell - vacated by expelled BNP councillor James Lloyd - The Stirrer hears an intriguing tale of Labour party in-fighting. more


PARRIS TWINS WITH BIRMINGHAM

16-11-2007

Times columnist Matthew Parris has been telling readers of his "Times" column how impressed he was by Birmingham during a recent visit - especially as we're so modest about our achievements. He even suggests a new motto for the city. more


THE LONG WAIT FOR WENDY RICHARD

16-11-2007

Along with the age-old traditions of apple bobbing, trick or treat and anti social behaviour, Halloween heralds a different meaning in my house. It's time to tax the car. more


Get Out More.............................Gig News

EELS ON TOWN HALL MENU....ALONG WITH BENN AND PORTILLO

16-11-2007

Two of the country's best known political figures, Michael Portillo and Tony Benn are heading to Birmingham Town Hall. The revamped venue's impressively eclectic programme also includes a date for Eels - the band who make The Smiths sound cheerful. more


BLIND DAVE ON THE WAGON

16-11-2007

Black Country runner Blind Dave Heeley has given up booze as his epic 7/7/7 marathon challenge looms closer. Dave, from West Bromwich, normally downs around 30 pints a week, but has now been (mostly) alcohol-free for six weeks. more


58 DAYS LATER

15-11-2007

No one denies there's a terror threat to Britain....but there's also a growing and sinister risk to our freedom. Government plans to extend the length of time suspects are held to 58 days are only the latest example. more


Stirrer TV

BANF AXING "ILLOGICAL" WARNS BOSS

15-11-2007

The Chair of Birmingham Association of Neighbourhood Forums launched a blistering attack on the Council for cutting the organisation's funding last night. Mick Rice, who'll lose his job under the plans told a public meeting the decision was "illogical" at a time when the future of community engagement in the city is still being discussed. more


DOCTORS HAVE A SENSE OF RESIGNATION

15-11-2007

Top Birmingham neurologist Dr David Nicholl plans to "doorstep" the government's Chief Medical Officer Liam Donaldson today and call on him to resign. Here he tells us why. more


BRUCE ON THE LOOSE AS WIGAN WAIT TO POUNCE

15-11-2007

The protracted takeover of Birmingham City could force manager Steve Bruce to leave the club after six years. Prospective owner Carson Yeung has been stalling on a new contract for Bruce who has now been targeted by Premiership strugglers Wigan. more


STAND UP FOR LAURENCE INMAN

15-11-2007

He's back, terrorising the stages of the West Midlands with his trademark dry wit and grouchy persona. Laurence Inman's return to stand-up prompts musings on the split personality of Kings Heath. There's also a sly reference to a certain local derby. more


Martin Longley's Music Blog
THE RANDY WESTON AFRICAN RHYTHMS TRIO (Birdland, New York)

15-11-2007
The Stirrer's global gigging guide takes you once more to the Big Apple where Martin Longley delves into the world of African-influenced jazz. more


POWER PLAY

15-11-2007

Too many foreign stars ruining England's football prospects? Not according to Richard Nevin who reckons the problems start closer to home. more


WHICH LADY WOULD IN LADYWOOD?

14-11-2007

Congratulations to David Bell for his excellent scoop in tonight's Birmingham Mail, revealing Ladywood Labour party's desire to have a black or Asian candidate to replace Clare Short as MP. What Bell doesn't explain is why Khalid Mahmood is the most prominent voice against the plan. more


STIRRER HOSTS "PEOPLE POWER" SUMMIT

14-11-2007
Stirrer editor Adrian Goldberg is hosting a public meeting tonight to discuss the future of two Birmingham community organisations that are being axed. Now that BANF and BCEN are losing their funding, how will the City Council allow "people power" to be heard? more


SMITH SAGA POINTS UP ELECTION FEVER

14-11-2007

Sorry, but we're still puzzled as to why Home Secretary Jacqui Smith has been put on the rack over claims that up 10,000 illegal workers were given clearance to work as security guards. Responsibility for checking whether staff can legally be employed in this country rests with the boss. more


FLYBE CUSTOMERS SMELL THE FEAR

14-11-2007

Less than a month after a BBC Five Live investigation (presented by Stirrer editor Adrian Goldberg) into noxious fumes on Flybe flights, there's been another incident on one of the company's planes. Yesterday's flight from Birmingham to Stuttgart was aborted because of unpleasant odours and high temperatures in the cabin. more


Military Families Support Blog

BROWN'S IRAQ U-TURN KILLS FAMILIES HOPES

14-11-2007

Families' hopes of visiting a roadside memorial to troops killed in Iraq have been dashed by a government u-turn. Carol Jones, whose son John died in Basra, is one of those disappointed by the news. more


Get Out More.............................Theatre Review

CAR MAN (Hippodrome, until Sat)

14-11-2007

It's one of the world's great operas reinvented as modern dance by Matthew Bourne. Audiences have been wowed since it was first seen in 2000 and Terry Wills joins the fan club. more


IT'LL MAKE YER WANNA ........

14-11-2007

Local film-maker Mark Locke, who possesses one of the most enjoyably warped imaginations The Stirrer has ever seen, has just posted one of his early shorts on youTube. It's a wonderful piece of film-making - but definitely not for the faint-hearted. More


JUST A PHRASE WE'RE GOING THROUGH

14-11-2007

Beware cliche - mongers - and yes, that includes you Mr Stirrer! Andy Goff is on a wordy warpath to destroy a couple of well worn but meaningless phrases. more

NIGHTINGALE FEAR AS CROSBY WINS APPEAL

13-11-2007

Insiders at Birmingham's oldest gay club The Nightingale admit they are worried about its future following a successful appeal by developer Crosby Homes, which plans to build dozens of new apartments nearby. more


MOSELEY IS SATURATED - BUT TOO MUCH OF BRUM IS DRY

13-11-2007

Now that Moseley has effectively shut up shop to new drinking establishments maybe Birmingham councillors will turn their attention to the flip side of this "saturated" suburb - the fact that many other parts of the city have now become pub deserts. more


Exclusive

DOCTORS ON THE SICK

13-11-2007

As the government's disastrous junior doctors recruitment scheme unfolded earlier this year, Birmingham neurologist Dr David Nicholl gave us a unique inside view. Now, in this shocking expose, he warns there's worse to come. more


LEONARD TANN R.I.P.

13-11-2007

The leader of Birmingham's Orthodox Jewish community, Rabbi Leonard Tann has died at the age of 62. He was known for his energetic efforts to break down barriers between members of different faiths - and for his wicked sense of humour. more


Terry's Baggies Blog

BAGGIES POST EARLY FOR CHRISTMAS

13-11-2007

Albion's away form is starting to look ominous for their promotion rivals after they racked up another big win on the road last night. Terry Wills enjoyed the early Xmas present. more


FORCES POSTED EARLY XMAS GIFT

13-11-2007

Forces families are celebrating an early Christmas present after learning that a free postal service to troops in Iraq and Afghanistan which was due to expire next month is now being extended indefinitely. more


PUMP UP THE VOLUME

13-11-2007

Lynn Hawthorne recently proposed creating a Top Ten Middle of the Road classics selection allowing you to get revenge on the beat box merchants who sit in their cars with bass bins blaring. Simon Gray can't understand what all the fuss is about. Silence, he says, isn't golden. more


FREEDOM BOUGHT TO BOOK

13-11-2007

A little known quirk of the law forces hard-pushed publishers to send off five free copies of every book to a government agency - or risk falling foul of the law. Dave Woodhall reckons it's time to start a new chapter. more


Blind Dave's Blog (48)

A BUMPY FLIGHT TO BELFAST

13-11-2007

Blind Dave Heeley's epic 777 challenge looms ever closer, and this week he's been to get the once-over at Belfast's world respected Institute of Sport. more


20 COPS HURT AFTER BLUES/VILLA AGGRO

12-11-2007

Twenty police officers were injured or assaulted when trouble flared in the aftermath of the Second City derby at St Andrews yesterday. Seventeen fans were arrested after the game in which Villa beat Blues 2-1. more


AITKEN DESERVES A SECOND CHANCE

12-11-2007

Labour should beware too much mud-slinging in the direction of Jonathan Aitken - ex-con and ex-Con MP. To be seen to be persecuting a man who has "done his time" does no one any favours. more


The Stirrer Cancer Campaign

ACTIVE GRAN CALLS FOR NEW CANCER DRUG

12-11-2007

Regular Stirrer readers will know all about our campaign to ensure cancer patients are given the life-extending drug Sutent. Now an active grandmother from Birmingham is demanding access to another breakthrough treatment. more


COUNCIL PAY PETITION ON THE STIRRER

12-11-2007

The petition against Birmingham Council's controversial Pay and Grading Review can now be downloaded from The Stirrer. Meanwhile the local authority denies it has fiddled the new structure to help senior staff, and our kind words for the councillor who has to implement the whole thing have also come in for stick. more


NEVER ON A SUNDAY WITH LONDON MIDLAND?

12-11-2007

The Stirrer welcomes new rail operator London Midland to the region today with one special plea - can we have the guaranteed Sunday trains your predecessor never managed to provide? more


NEW CBSO SUPREMO STRIKES THE RIGHT NOTE

12-11-2007

Any new Musical Director of the CBSO walks in the shadow of Simon Rattle, but charismatic young baton-wielder Andris Nelsons did enough on his Symphony Hall debut yesterday to suggest that he'll make just as significant an impact. more


Callum's Blues Blog

SECOND CITY BLUES

12-11-2007

Not for the first time this season, it was a case of "if only" for Birmingham City, who were left to rue a couple of rejected penalty appeals. It always hurts, of course, but it hurts more against the Villa. more


Poet's Corner

WHEN WILL THEY LISTEN AND STOP SHOUTING?

16-11-2007

Top government advisor Sir Cyril Taylor reckons the answer to poor performance in schools is to sack more teachers. He estimates that there are 17,000 iffy ones in the system. Brendan Hawthorne picks a playground fight. more


The Stirrer Podcast

THE STIRRER POPS PODCAST CHERRY

10-11-2007

Today, The Stirrer is delighted to introduce our first podcast - editor Adrian Goldberg's rumination on a tough week for former Tory candidate Nigel Hastilow. It's the first step in an exciting new audio development for the site. more


AN UNCOMMON MARKET

10-11-2007

Bratwurst, gluhwein, und schnapps. Yes it's a traditional Brummie Christmas. Richard Nevin welcomes the return of the Frankfurt Christmas Market to the city on Thursday. more


Exclusive

SALMA'S RESPECT FOR GALLOWAY AS PARTY SPLITS

10-11-2007

One of Birmingham's brightest political sparks, the Respect councillor Salma Yaqoob has vowed to stick by her leader George Galloway as the party prepares for an acrimonious split. more


The Stirrer's Week

NEET YOUNG THINGS

10-11-2007

Whether it was admiring the bright young things of the Black Country or watching Birmingham's next generation of poets, The Stirrer has been surrounded by positive youthful vibes this week. Or at least he was until the government came up with a less than NEET idea for idle teenagers. more


Dave Woodhall's Villa Blog

HATE AND WAR

10-11-2007

Welcome to "the most hate-filled fixture in the country". Dave Woodhall reflects on how the intensity of the Villa/Blues derby has escalated in recent years. more


Get Out More........................................Theatre Review

HENRY V (RSC, Stratford upon Avon)

10-11-2007

This is the closest Shakespeare gets to tub-thumping rabble-rousing patriotism. Paula Elenor reckons it's the Bard at his best. more


Martin Longley's Music Blog
GLOBAL SOUNDS: NEW YORK (Part 46)

10-11-2007
Blimey. Brummie music critic Martin Longley's been a busy boy in the Big Apple. Just for you he's been sampling the best the Big Apple has to offer in what we quaintly used to call World Music. more


Mick Temple's Blog

HASTILOW'S 'CRIME' OF FREE SPEECH

10-09-2007

Mick Temple launches a vigorous defence of Nigel Hastilow's right to openly discuss immigration - even if some people find it uncomfortable. more


PUBLIC FEARS "WHITE ELEPHANT" AWARD

09-11-2007
West Brom's Public Arts Centre risks winning an unenviable title this evening when ITV's Tonight With Trevor McDonald investigates the nation's biggest waste of public money. more


LEAD BALLOON AT BLUES VILLA DERBY?

09-11-2007

Well-intentioned plans for a balloon release at the Second City derby on Sunday have been slammed by a conservationist - who warns it will end up killing turtles, birds and other wildlife. more


LABOUR ACCUSE BRUM COUNCIL OF "ROBBING WORKERS"

09-11-2007

Labour leader Sir Albert Bore has entered the fray over Birmingham Council's controversial Pay And Grading Review, accusing the ruling Lib-Dem/Tory coalition of "robbing Paula to pay Pauline." His comments reflect growing unease that the new deal, designed to eliminate discrimination, will leave many women workers worse off. more


Get Out More...................................................Film News
ELECTRIC CINEMA (Station Street, Birmingham)

09-11-2007
The Stirrer's favourite indie cinema in Birmingham city centre has a spiffing line up over the next few weeks, including Control, the biopic of Joy Division vocalist Ian Curtis. There's also news of free - yes free - weekly screenings of Channel 4 classics, and a Bond star coming to town. more


NEW POLISH ROUTE FOR BRUM

09-11-2007

Birmingham Airport's ever-expanding portfolio of budget destinations continues with the news that bmibaby will start flights to Krakow in Poland next year. more


The Stirrer's Cancer Campaign

CANCER DAD WINS POSTCODE LOTTERY

08-11-2007

Cancer victim Michael Young finally has something to celebrate after being told that he'll be given the revolutionary new drug Sutent, which could put years on his life. The news comes after a campaign on this website and in the Birmingham Mail's Stirrer column. more


ACOCKS GREEN BLUES

08-11-2007

A couple of days ago a shocking story cropped up on our Message Board that demanded further investigation. Ged Hughes from Acocks Green told us about a popular local wood that had been sold off without the knowledge of local residents. Here's her full disturbing story. more


ON YER BIKE, LEN

08-11-2007
She might be standing down at the next election, but Selly Oak Labour MP Lynne Jones hasn't lost her fire. Here's her open letter to Birmingham's Transportation Boss Len Gregory after he outlined his latest strategy at Council this week. more


FREE RANGE KIDS

08-11-2007

Keeping the kids indoors because of all those nasty paedophiles, child murderers and teenage gangs. Get a life, says Laurence Inman. Or more to the point, give your children one. more


Get Out More....................................Gig News

SLADE/MUD (The Robin, December 12)

08-11-2007

Whoah! It's 1973 again, and glam rock reigns. Dave Hill's waving his "Super Yob" guitar, and Les Gray is doing his worst Elvis impression. more


Stirrer TV

"I'M NO RACIST" - HASTILOW

07-11-2007

Nigel Hastilow, forced to quit as a Conservative candidate in the Black Country after endorsing Enoch Powell's views on immigration has insisted - "I'm no racist." But in his only full-length, unedited interview since the controversy broke, he admitted to Stirrer TV it was a mistake to use Powell's name to support his argument. more


NEW OLYMPIC STADIUM UNVEILED

07-11-2007

The design of Britain's Olympic Stadium for the 2012 Games at Stratford in East London has been put on public show for the first time today. more


Terry's Bonus Baggies Blog

REFFING AND BLINDING

07-11-2007

Last night's astonishing refereeing performance at the Hawthorns which robbed the Baggies of a richly deserved victory against Sheffield Wednesday brings an instant blast from Terry Wills. Just watch the highlights on local telly tonight and see how right he is. more


COUNCIL WORKERS PLAN ACTION OVER PAY

07-11-2007
Union officials met last night in Birmingham to draw up a timetable for industrial action following yesterday's rally in Victoria Square against the Council's Pay and Grading Review. Around 1,5000 protestors turned up to show their anger against the new wage structure. more


WHAT A STATE

07-11-2007

Let's abolish the State Opening of Parliament, says Andy Goff. And while we're at it, why not do away with the family whose job it is to front the whole ridiculous ceremony. more


MEATLOAF BLOWS OUT BRUM - AGAIN

07-11-2007

Meatloaf's ill-fated NEC gig, postponed at late notice last week, has now been cancelled altogether. Disappointed fans were told that the show had been re-scheduled for November 29, but now the singer's European tour has been called off altogether. more


COUNCIL WORKER "RUSHED TO HOSPITAL" AFTER PAY CUT

06-11-2007

One Birmingham Council worker had to be rushed to hospital last week after discovering the size of her wage cut under the Pay and Grading Review. Union members will be lobbying in the city centre today to protest against the changes. more


SOME QUESTIONS ABOUT PUBLIC MONEY

06-11-2007

The Stirrer has discovered that a Birmingham company has recently been awarded 9,000 of taxpayers' cash, despite having three County Court Judgements issued against it. In light of that chequered financial history, can it be trusted with public money, we wonder? more


CELLCAM COMES TO INTERNET

06-11-2007

West Midlands Police have launched a new short movie to show what it's like to be arrested. The "prisoner eye video" follows one man's pissed-up progress to the cells. more


BNP'S "COME AND JOIN US" OFFER TO HASTILOW

06-11-2007

Nigel Hastilow, the Black Country Tory candidate forced to stand down after his "Enoch Powell Was Right" newspaper article has been invited to join the British National Party. more


UK TERROR THREAT IT'S THE POLITICS, STUPID

06-11-2007

Now that John Reid has departed the Home Office, the almost daily "security alerts" that marked the dying days of the Blair administration have receded. All the more reason to take seriously MI5's warning that al-Qaida sympathisers are recruiting British teenagers. more


THE JOHN WALKER INTERVIEW

06-11-2007

Scott was the teeny heart-throb in legendary '60s balladeers the Walker Brothers, but the driving force behind the band was John, who still carries their torch into the live arena. The Stirrer caught up with him ahead of Friday's show at The Robin in Bilston. more


DOC DAVE'S "WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?"

06-11-2007

As Poppy Day approaches Dr David Nicholl sets out to trace his grandfather who fought in "the war to end all wars". Just for balance, there's a UVF gun-runner on the other side of the family. more


Martin Longley's New York Music Blog
The Christopher Columbus of Birmingham reviewers
MARK MURPHY (Iridium, New York)

06-11-2007
Most folks would probably deem Mark Murphy a bit of an eccentric figure, but it's this very individuality that has marked him out as one of the most distinctive jazz singers in the music's history, not only in his voice alone, but in his whole storytelling persona, his demeanour and delivery. more


BUREAUCRACY BOUND (IN THE PAPERLESS OFFICE)

06-11-2007

Once upon a time, office workers were offered the dream of a paperless office. It's still no nearer muses Brendan Hawthorne, who's come across this confidential letter sent to staff at one of the country's top companies. more


MP GODSIFF REPORTED TO STANDARDS WATCHDOG

05-11-2007

Birmingham MP Roger Godsiff has been reported to the parliamentary standards watchdog by a city publican. Keith Marsden, who runs the Prince of Wales in Moseley has accused Godsiff of deliberately spreading misleading information about him. more


HASTILOW'S GONE FROM THE TORIES - BUT NOT THE "STAR"

05-11-2007

The swift resignation of Enoch Powell supporter Nigel Hastilow as Tory candidate for Halesowen and Rowley Regis means that the Conservative party has decisively answered a difficult question. Now it's the Express and Star's turn to let us know, without ambiguity, where they stand on the issue of race. more


Get Out More..........................Gig Preview

BRITISH SEA POWER (tonight, Barfly Birmingham)

05-11-2007

Wilfully obscure with a hatful of knowing references to British pop history. You just know Paul Samuels will appreciate British Sea Power. more


Callum's Blues Blog

FEELING BAD ABOUT GOODISON

05-11-2007

You had to feel for Blues on Saturday - well, unless you're a Villa fan. They matched Everton for 90 minutes at Goodison, but as Callum O' Connell laments, they still came away empty handed, thanks to two injury time goals. more


REMEMBRANCE PAY

05-11-2007

At a time of year when we're being exhorted to buy our Remembrance Day poppies, how well are we treating the troops of today in Iraq and Afghanistan? As Barbara Panvel reports, they're are being asked to double their life insurance premiums. more


Terry's Baggies Blog

"WHAT'S IT LIKE TO BE OUTCLASSED?"

05-11-2007

Defeat at Watford on Saturday would have left Albion with a 12-point deficit on the leaders. Just as well they were in the mood to dish out a footballing lesson enjoyed to the max by Terry Wills. more


Get Out More.............................Gig Review

COCK SPARRER (Wolvo Civic Hall, Sat)

05-11-2007

Punk veterans might remember Cock Sparrer as one miss wonders ("Runnin' Riot" anyone?) but Miles Barter catches a bind still in fine fettle and bringing an international crowd to the Civic. more


CAMERON CHALLENGE ON CARBON FOOTPRINT

03-11-2007

David Cameron is being challenged by Black Country MP Tom Watson to declare his carbon footprint. The Conservative leader has been rocked by a Watson's revelations about his party's use of a donated private jet. more


The State of the Press (1)

IT'S NOT JUST THE RED TOPS, HEATHER...TRY THE GUARDIAN

03-11-2007

Elsewhere on this site today we encourage you to Stand Up For Journalism, but it's not always easy to defend the British press. We're not convinced by Heather Mills' lamentations about the tabloids, but we are more troubled by that bastion of political correctness The Guardian. more


The State of the Press (2)

STANDING UP FOR JOURNALISTS

03-11-2007

People who do the mucky job of reporting on other people's lives often rank lower in surveys of trustworthiness than politicians and estate agents. Miles Barter asks you to ditch your preconceptions and stand up for journalists. more


LEADER DEFENDS COUNCILLORS "WELSHING" ON SANDWELL

03-11-2007

Sandwell's Deputy Leader Steve Eling has leapt to the defence of two veteran councillors who are quitting the Black Country to live in Wales. Eling - effectively top man during Bill Thomas' extended sick leave - says that George and Linda Turton will only be judged on how well they do their job. more


REMEMBER, REMEMBER.....TO SILENCE FIREWORKS

03-11-2007

Since when did Bonfire Night give us an excuse to wake up the neighbourhood for a good fortnight beforehand wonders Ros Dodd? more


Get Out More.........................................Gig Review

THE REZILLOS (Little Civic, Wolverhampton)

03-11-2007

Blimey? Are they still going? Too right says Dave Woodhall. And they've been neglected for far too long. more


THE STIRRER LIGHTS UP SMETHWICK

03-11-2007

Make a date in your dairy for next Thursday. Stirrer editor Adrian Goldberg will be pulling the lever for new animation, designed by local residents, at The Hawthorns Metro Station. more


MEATLOAF'S LAST MINUTE NEC BLOW OUT

03-11-2007

Thousands of Meatloaf fans were left disappointed when the singer cancelled last night's concert at the NEC just over an hour before the doors were due to open. Promoters had earlier reassured fans that the operatically inclined rock star would definitely appear. more


BIRMINGHAM MP FINED FOR USING MOBY ON THE MOVE

02-11-2007

Hodge Hill MP and Immigration Minister Liam Byrne has been found guilty of using his mobile phone while driving. He was convicted at Sutton Coldfield Magistrates today and fined 100. more


ANOTHER BLAIR WHOSE TIME HAS COME

02-11-2007

An innocent man gets shot dead in our nation's capital, and the Met Police which killed him is found guilty of endangering public safety. The trial exposes a catalogue of errors, with no fewer than 19 different failings. And yet the top man, Sir Ian Blair, insists he has no reason to resign. Come, come Sir Ian. more


Get Out More............................Gig News

CHRIS ROCK ANNOUNCES BRUM DATE

02-11-2007

US comic Chris Rock - star of Channel Five's "Everybody Hates Chris" - has announced details of his first UK tour, including a show at the NIA on January 12. more


Exclusive
SANDWELL COUNCILLORS GO YAKKI FAR

02-11-2007

Two prominent Sandwell councillors insist they'll still be able to serve their constituents - even though they're moving to North Wales. Former Mayor Linda Turton and her husband George have sold their house in West Brom, and are moving to Twywn - more than 120 miles away. more


Stirrer TV

ROCKIN ROBIN'S EARBASHING FOR LOCAL RADIO

02-11-2007

BRMB legend "Rockin' Robin" Valk has hit out at his former station and other commercial channels for ignoring the local talent on their doorstep. Talking to Stirrer TV at yesterday's Gigbeth launch, he said it made good business sense to support homegrown bands. more


BRUMMIE OF THE YEAR - RUNNERS AND RIDERS

02-11-2007

The final list of contenders for Brummie of the Year has now been drawn up - and The Stirrer is happy to mark your card, with our strictly unofficial odds for the runners and riders. more


LORRA LORRA LORRIES

02-11-2007
With concerns growing over air pollution and traffic congestion, Britain's canal network is now being primed to take some of the strain of carrying freight. Not before time argues Barbara Panvel.
more


Mick Temple's Blog

CRIMBO IN LIMBO

02-11-2007

One of Labour's think tanks has come up with its craziest idea yet, reckons Mick Temple - the suggestion that Christmas should be seen as just another religious festival with no special significance. more


BBC CLAIMS LABOUR TRIED TO BRIBE BRUM VOTERS

01-11-2007

New allegations of electoral corruption in Birmingham have been revealed by the BBC's Newsnight - including claims that Labour officials offered bribes for votes. The latest revelations come as the party's veteran councillor Muhammed Afzal faces an Election Court in the city. more


GIGBETH GIG GOERS GET THEIR TICKET

01-11-2007

Gig goers hoping to enjoy the delights of "the UK's most diverse music festival" Gigbeth which opens today are being warned they can't just turn up and hope to get in - tickets for all events must be bought in advance from the designated box offices. more


CAMERON WINGED BY BLOGGER WATSON

01-11-2007

The harassment of David Cameron by West Brom Labour MP Tom Watson continues with revelations that the Conservative leader has accepted UK flights worth nearly 300,000 in the last two years. Another blogger claims that one of Cameron's predecessors has failed to declare trips in a private jet. more


THREATS DASH FEWTRELL BOOK LAUNCH

01-11-2007

The launch of the autobiography of legendary Birmingham club owner Eddie Fewtrell has been cancelled following threats to staff at Waterstone's book store in New Street. more


BIN THE BASS: MIDDLE-OF-THE-ROAD GETS EVEN

01-11-2007

Fed up of hearing the thump thump thump of drum n' bass from cars parked in your street. Lynn Hawthorne proposes aversion therapy. more


Get Out More.....................................Theatre News

SHE STOOPS TO CONQUER (Birmingham Rep, until 17 Nov)

01-11-2007

Colin Baker, Liza Goddard...it's an all-star line-up in the Rep's revival of Goldsmith's 18th century classic. But what's this? Our reviewer Paula Elenor reckons she's spotted Jeremy Kyle too. more


SPRAY IT AGAIN

01-11-2007

What's this? The Stirrer's resident grumpy old man Laurence Inman actually getting enthusiastic about something. You bet. Only snag is, it's in London. more


Get Out More......................................................Gig News

LIZA MINELLI (Symphony Hall, June 2)

01-11-2007

Legendary "Cabaret" star Liza Minelli has been booked to make her first appearance in Brum next year. The Oscar winning singer and actress is due to appear at Symphony Hall in June 2008. more

 

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