Online meeting about Hazelwell Station in Stirchley

Apologies, I chose to live tweet this so there could be some interaction during the meeting rather than make comprehensive notes, so what’s below is copied from my tweets – and some clarification or additional info, if remembered.  I’ve also taken out all the references to my cat, who was very bothered that I was ignoring her and dinnertime to live-tweet this.

Presenting at the meeting was: Gavin Smith from West Midlands Rail Executive/Programme, and John Myatt from Birmingham City Council.


  • Stations have been designed around pedestrian access. They’re not designed to be park and ride because there’s no room – they don’t even want to encourage it with a small car park. “local stations for local people”
  • Turns out West Midlands Railway want to put fancy new trains on the fancy new line…these trains are currently under construction.
  • Want to develop new stations around the idea of community assets, rather than being imposed on the community.
  • Next up John Myatt from Birmingham City Council talking about integrating Hazelwell Station into the area. Their colleague Tim is also dialled into the meeting.
  • Talking about the Birmingham City Council transport plan and COVID-19’s emergency transport plan and how the Council doesn’t want to see people return to their cars and wants to encourage (safe) use of public transport.
  • talking about reallocating road space. Which is something we’re working on in Stirchley already (there’s plans coming, just waiting for them to be release).
  • there has been some concerned and Birmingham City Council are listening and things will be done in local consultation. They want to hear your views. They know they need to improve walking and cycling in the area…maybe a low traffic neighbourhood?


  • They’re after local intelligence (someone call Jack Bauer). They will do some data collection, but traffic counts are stopped at the moment and not a fair representation. This would’ve been an in person meeting / workshop but you know, social distancing…
  • Consultations galore! Before and after the station opens. They also want thoughts on the name (that fun again).
  • Ooh, Q&A come in via email. Station name is the first question, there’s a mixed response on the chat box. “Someone” (me) mentioned there needs to be wider consultation. Gavin thinks it’s interesting about the name. Shows not clear-cut but evenly split and interesting issues
  • Appetite for a debate. Formal consultation is to be recommended. You know I love a good community consultation (remember the dreamcatchers)
  • Q around if there is any plans for the trains to go beyond Kings Norton. A: Planning a timetable that doesn’t cause performance issues (we’re all aware of those, right)…ooh they admit to them. Gavin says no one wants to see the return of those.
  • Trains will terminate at Kings Norton for now, but they can’t say that will always be the case. In the longer term there is a much large scheme, Midlands Rail Hub, wants to unlock rail capacity in the area and introduce connections onto the former Great Western.
  • Ooh, reference to the Bordesley Cords. And then fun around links to Tyseley and link Moor St to Leicester and somewhere else in the East Midlands (sorry my cat miaowed and distracted me). This is no going to take place any time soon
  • Q: how loud are they? A: can’t give a precise measurement but they are the greenest and quietest form of diesel. They should be quieter than voyager and definitely quieter than freight trains.


  • So many questions about parking. One about parking restrictions on Pineapple Rd and local roads to prevent all-day parking? Belief people will drive to Hazelwell. Dads Lane Community Centre talk about impact of their users on two-hour waiting restriction and residents
  • Everyone recognises concerns around on-street parking, they’ll be monitoring habits in first six months to see how effective the proposed restrictions are. See if there is an inconsiderate / illegal parking and will (in consultation) bring in alternative controls.
  • Genuine belief that these stations won’t encourage people driving and parking to local streets, says Gavin. It’ll be tricky for people to drive and park at Hazelwell presently. Also restrictions will deter people driving in large numbers.
  • There has been an effort to “design out” people driving to the station. Plans haven’t changed, but nothing to say they couldn’t change IF people want to see them changed. Unlikely anyone will drive b/c you’ll pass another station to get there.
  • There might’ve been space at Moseley for a car park but they’ve deliberately not put one in there because they don’t want to encourage it. This is the same with all of the stations. They’re really pushing this line about not wanting to encourage people driving, it’s nice.
  • Qs around: More road stuff, something about road safety and something about a local #lotrafficneighbourhood and how this will be affected. Also about links to the station for pedestrians were to be reviewed.
  • Answer to this is a bit waffle tbh. Hoped to hold a workshop but you know coronavirus. Not gonna be a formal #lowtrafficneighbourhood but will be a high priority. Recognise safety, there will be more concerns and will hope to have more measures in before it opens.
  • Q: during lockdown issues in speed and concerns about this continuing. Could speed measurements be done now. A: definitely look at LTN for all residential areas across the city. BCC want city-wide 20mph zones. Central Gov said no…
  • Want to make it – and other residential areas, pedestrian and cycle priority. Want to discourage people from getting in their car for short journeys (unless you can’t, obvs). This would also be a wish for across the city, by the way. £4mill for the whole city, is not a lot
  • do believe there will be more funding for sustainable and active travel in the future. Very much something Birmingham City Council have talked about a lot.
  • Could the grass in the front of houses on Cartland Rd be turned into a small car park / what will stop people parking there. Gavin wonderfully saying no to the car park and enforcement will try to stop people parking on there. Someone give me a ticket book…
  • Oh wait, that was John. Gavin also doesn’t want to encourage people to drive to the stations either. Small car park is the worst of all worlds because it will encourage people to chance it. Not on the Agenda.
  • More Q: Could the trains be replaced with battery powered Metro trams instead? A: No, no plans for this to be a light tram route. It’s a heavy route, has cross country and south wales and manchester and freight traffic on there. SO no tram-train style thing.
  • Now going on about some sort of hybrid thing with battery and charging and something. Working with industry. As tech improves there could be opportunities bi-mode something-or-other?
  • Q:Will any acoustic fencing be put up to protect people’s gardens? A: Plans for fence to stop trespassing. Acoustic fencing is high, concrete, more high speed, not pretty…no plans can look into it. PA system can be controlled so work with residents around noise levels on that
  • Million Dollar Q…when is it going to open? Was supposed to be 2021, now 2022, could it be delayed further? Yep, because it is COMPLEX. Timetabling issues with Network Rail tricky, already busy network. Might appear simple, but really not. December 2022 plan – Christmas present?
  • Q around Pineapple / Cartland junction, which is apparently notorious for accidents…lots of questions echoed this. Traffic modelling indicates the station isn’t going to make much change to the risk ranking. They will monitor this and if changes are needed then they’ll do
this is my favourite comment about how to stop people parking…
  • Evidence doesn’t tally up / doesn’t meet planning criteria or something but they are aware there are concerns and they will work to make sure it prioritises walking and cycling and it is safe for people to do so
  • Q: Will middle platforms at Kings Norton be used for Camp Hill line trains? And will that mean the brickyard that it currently is be cleaned up? A: KN odd station, b/c platforms 2/3 not used. Plan was to use platform 4. Need to look at capacity at KN, working with Network Rail
  • This is something to do with signalling and re-signalling the station which is lengthy and expensive and would rather avoid if they can.

And with that it was back to councillor Mary Locke to end the meeting. She mentioned that both she and the representatives from the council and West Midlands Rail Exec would’ve liked to have a workshop, one was planned but couldn’t go ahead due to COVID-19 and the lockdown. There is a suggestion that there may be one at Dads Lane when possible. Still a lot to do and a lot to talk about.