Welcome to the latest Momentum South Birmingham newsletter – your unmissable weekly digest of all the interesting things going on politically in our area and beyond.
It’s been an odd weekend. Our final #SuperSaturday in Northfield was a huge success with something like 80 people turning up for the campaigning and was followed up by some more excellent opinion polls but the horrific terrorist attack in London on Saturday night brought things back down to earth with a bump. A lot of the campaigning was suspended yesterday as a mark of respect but has re-commenced today – it all means that the next few days are going to be really intense.
Clearly the big push will be on Thursday, polling day. Getting people to remember to vote is harder than you think! In line with the rest of the election campaign Momentum Birmingham’s focus will be on helping Northfield get Richard Burden re-elected, so if you are available, even if it’s only for a couple of hours, to get across and help and you have no pressing duties in your own CLP please do. More details below.
There is also a big GOTV rally planned in Birmingham city centre tomorrow at 7pm (but aim to get there for 6) with Jeremy Corbyn speaking – to RSVP click here – and bring a rain jacket!
Also included are the campaigning dates for Wolverhampton South West again. It’s a bit out of the way for us in South Birmingham but they have a Labour majority of merely 801 plus the Labour candidate – Eleanor Smith – a nurse for 30 years who is being supported by Unison – is new due to the retirement of Rob Marris. The CLP campaign team are reporting a significant move towards Labour due to Tory policy on social care so it’s not a ‘lost cause’ although UKIP had 4310 votes last time. It is definitely worth getting over if you can. Session and contact details are below our usual four CLP schedules.
Polling day: Thursday 8th June
The focus of Birmingham Momentum’s efforts on Thursday will be in helping to get Richard Burden re-elected in Northfield. While the CLP has run an absolutely brilliant campaign the result is still on a knife-edge. They will have four separate “campaign centres” – one in each of the constituency’s wards, running a Get Out the Vote operation: door-knocking, phone-banking and arranging lifts to the polling station. We are already dividing our activists around the four and if you are available please drop email@example.com or drop us a line and we can direct you where you will be of most assistance. The 4 locations are:
- Kings Norton (and main HQ) – The Old Grammar School (near St Nicolas Place), B38 8RU.
- Longbridge – 10 Rednal Mill Drive, B45 8XX.
- Northfield – 8 Innage Road, B31 2DX.
- Weoley – 5 Ramsden Close, B29 4JX.
All four will be open from 9am to 9pm. Any help, even if it’s for just an hour or so, could be crucial.
KONP Birmingham meeting, 7th June
KONPB do a huge amount of brilliant work but are always in need of more help. For those who are interested in supporting and/or joining KONP and contributing to campaigns their contact details are firstname.lastname@example.org.
Meetings are 1st Wednesday of every month (except August), so people can drop in any time at The Wellington, 37 Bennetts Hill, Birmingham, B2 5SN. The next meeting is this Wednesday, the 7th, at 19:30pm. Currently KONPB have campaigns on the STPs in Brum/Solihull and Black Country. the Midland Metropolitan Hospital (PFI/2) and they are looking to do some more work on the mental health arrangements for young people 0-25 years in Birmingham – currently ‘red risk’.
Please get involved in and support KONPB in any way you can.
General election, June 8th.
MSB are under no illusions, this is going to be the fight of our lives and we have a few weeks to change a lot of minds. Many of the sitting Labour MPs are not particularly to our liking, to put it mildly, and we should have been given a chance to vote for our candidates, but we are where we are.
There will be plenty of information about campaigning on our social media and also, hopefully, on the Birmingham Labour Party website. We’ll try and keep everything as up-to-date as we can and this newsletter will serve as a snapshot of everything coming up that we know of. The individual CLP sections are below and we’ll be keeping a spreadsheet with everything we know about here.
The officers of MSB have produced a statement that can be read here and if you want to get involved in campaigning please drop us a line at email@example.com.
Momentum nationally have also produced lots of information that can be read here.
Birmingham Labour will also be running a semi-permanent phonebank at one of their offices at the city centre – for more details and to book a session please click here to find them. You can pick the constituency you wish to focus on when you go.
June 9th – Post-election drink
After what has been an absolutely exhausting few weeks MSB will be relaxing to digest and hopefully celebrate the results at 19:30 at the Prince of Wales in Moseley. It’ll be a great opportunity to take stock and hopefully switch our brains off for a bit, and for our inveterate plotters senior members to have a night off plotting campaigning.
‘Turning activists into organisers’ course,
weekend of June 10th/11th
Our friends in Hope not Hate are hosting a free Campaign Course for activists in Birmingham who are interested in taking their campaigns to the next level. This course is designed to turn activists into effective community organisers. The contents for this free course are wide ranging, covering topics such as “how to avoid burn-out”, “understanding and mapping power” and “how to plan your campaign”, plus many others! These practical tools are being offered by community organisers from HOPE not hate, Friends of the Earth, Birmingham City University and Psychologists Against Austerity. The course is taking place on the weekend of June 10-11 so if you aren’t absolutely knackered after the general election please book a place! For more information, please click here and to apply for this course, please submit an application here.
Hope picnic, 18th June
South Birmingham Hope not Hate would also like to invite you to a Hope Picnic on the 18th June in Cannon Hill Park (by the swans) from 12.00-3pm. This is part of the Great Get Together weekend, celebrating that we have more in common. More information about the weekend here. We’re asking everyone to bring their friends, family, favourite food and as many games as you can carry! The picnic will be an opportunity to share food with old and new friends and family. The event will be child friendly so do bring your kids along for some sharing of food and games. You can sign up to the event yourself on Facebook here.
Screening of ‘Dispossession’ and Q+A, 22nd June
For some people, a housing crisis means not getting planning permission for a loft conversion. For others it means, quite simply, losing their home. Dispossession: The Great Social Housing Swindle is a feature documentary directed by Paul Sng (Sleaford Mods – Invisible Britain) and narrated by Maxine Peake, exploring the catastrophic failures that have led to a chronic shortage of social housing in Britain.
The film focuses on the neglect, demolition and regeneration of council estates across the UK and investigates how the state works with the private sector to demolish council estates to build on the land they stand on, making properties that are unaffordable to the majority of people.
Dispossession is the story of people fighting for their communities, of people who know the difference between a house and a home, and who believe that housing is a human right, not an expensive luxury.
Following the screening there will be a Q&A discussion featuring Paul Sng (Director), Dr Lisa McKenzie (London School of Economics), Robert Clayton (author and photographer of Estate), Tim Morton (housing consultant) and host Tom Murtha (Social Housing Under Threat). It starts promptly at 8pm and there are more details here.
Northfield constituency dates for your diary
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information
- Tue 6th Jun, 10.30am – door-knocking in Longbridge, meeting on the Bristol Road by Longbridge Methodist Church (B45 9TY).
- Tue 6th Jun, 3pm – school gate at Holly Hill Infant & Nursery School (B45 0EU).
- Tue 6th Jun, 6pm – door-knocking in Frankley, meeting at the junction of Holly Hill Road & Savernake Close (B45 0DD).
- Wed 7th Jun, 10.30am – door-knocking in Kings Norton, meeting on the Redditch Road by Campion House (B38 8QA).
- Wed 7th Jun, 3pm – school gate at Wychall Primary School (B31 3EH).
- Wed 7th Jun, 3pm – school gate at Bellfield Infant & Junior Schools (B31 1PG). Con
- Wed 7th Jun, 6pm – door-knocking in Kings Norton, meeting at the junction of Wychall Road & Staple Lodge Road (B31 1AX).
- They have also got some ‘week of poll‘ deliveries to go out before Thursday. If you can help with these please drop them a line.
- On Polling Day they will be running Campaign Centres in Kings Norton, Longbridge, Northfield and Weoley from 9am to 9pm with the last door-knocking session going out at 8pm. Any time that people are able to give towards their Get Out The Vote operation on the day will be greatly appreciated – full details of locations are at the top of the newsletter!
Edgbaston constituency dates for your diary
Tuesday 6th June
- 10am – 8pm – Phonebank at 4 Greenfield Crescent
- 30am – 12.30pm – Street Stall and Doorknocking in Harborne – Meet on Harborne High Street (B17 9NT)
- 11am – 1pm – Doorknocking in Quinton – Meet at the Quinborne Centre (B32 2TW)
- 11am – 1pm – Doorknocking in Edgbaston – Meet on the corner of Rotton Park Road and Hagley Road (B16 8LA)
- 2pm – 4pm – Doorknocking in Quinton – Meet at the Quinborne Centre (B32 2TW)
- 30pm – 4.30pm – Street Stall and Doorknocking in Harborne – Meet on Harborne High Street (B17 9NT)
- 3pm – 5pm – Doorknocking in Bartley Green – Meet on the corner of Woodside Way and Pinewood Drive (B32 4LP)
- 3pm – 5pm – Doorknocking in Edgbaston – Meet on the corner of Wellington Road and Sir Harry’s Road (B15 2ET)
- 6pm – 8pm – Doorknocking in Quinton – Meet at The Haven on Rilstone Road (B32 2NT)
- 6pm – 8pm – Doorknocking in Edgbaston – Meet at the corner of Woodview Drive and Springbank Road (B15 2HF)
- 30pm – 8pm – Doorknocking in Harborne – Meet at the corner of Ravenhurst Road and Moorpool Avenue (B17 9HN)
- 30pm – 8pm – Doorknocking in Bartley Green – Meet at the corner of Caynham Road and Hasbury Road (B32 4EU)
Wednesday 7th June
- 10am – 4pm – Phonebanking at 4 Greenfield Crescent (B15 3BE)
- 11am – 1pm – Doorknocking in Quinton – Meet at the Quinborne Centre (B32 2TW)
- 11am – 1pm – Doorknocking in Harborne – Meet at the corner of Sandon Road and Poplar Avenue (B17 8EG)
- 11am – 1pm – Doorknocking in Edgbaston – Meet at the corner of Richmond Hill and Farqahar Road (B15 3RA)
- 30pm – 3.30pm – Doorknocking in Harborne – Meet at the corner of Selsey Road and Fountain Road (B17 8NJ)
- 2pm – 4pm – Doorknocking in Quinton – Meet at the Quinborne Centre (B32 2TW)
- 2pm – 4pm – Doorknocking in Edgbaston – Meet at the corner of Bristol Road and Barsham Close (B5 7XQ)
- 3pm – 5pm – Doorknocking in Bartley Green – Meet at the corner of Glen Side and Stevens Avenue (B32 3EU)
- 30pm – 9.00pm – Campaigning Training at the Quinborne Centre (B32 2TW) – For those who are taking part in polling day (on the phones or doors), there will be a short training session on what to expect from polling day and the jobs they need to do.
Saturday 17th June
- Harborne ward Labour Party meeting, 11am, Moor Pool Lower Hall, 37 The Circle, Birmingham B17 9DY
Hall Green constituency dates for your diary
School gates leafletting
Tues 6 June, 3pm- Ladypool Primary School, Beechfield Road entrance (SPARKBROOK)
Weds 7 June, 3pm- Arden Primary School, St John’s Road entrance (SPRINGFIELD)
Wed 7 June – 6-8pm Phonebanking (local and elsewhere) at 66 St Agnes Road, Moseley
Polling Day 8th June
The campaign centre will run all day from 10am-9pm at 41 Clarence Road, Moseley, B13 9SZ. If you can, please drop in and offer your services at any point during the day, even if only for an hour, all help will be hugely appreciated. Refreshments will be provided.
They will be canvassing locally (Moseley and Kings Heath and parts of Selly Oak that border on our ward e.g. south of Howard Road, if you don’t want to go far) and in Northfield and Longbridge (transport available throughout the day). If you would rather stay at the campaign centre, we will need help there with admin. After 6pm our main focus will be in Moseley and Kings Heath.
Please book the day off if you can, and let them know if you can offer lifts to other volunteers or voters. (They will need your registration number for insurance purposes)
Selly Oak constituency dates for your diary
- Nothing in the diary this week, they seem to be organising general election activity on a day by day basis (and it appears to be working to be fair…..)
Wolverhampton South West dates for your diary:
Monday 5th June to Wednesday 7th June
- From 10:30am: Get Out The Vote (GOTV) Leafleting – Campaign HQ – The Elms Resource Centre, Manby Close (off Evans Street), Wolverhampton, WV6 0QR
- 6:30pm: GOTV Leafleting – Campaign HQ – The Elms Resource Centre, Manby Close (off Evans Street), Wolverhampton, WV6 0QR
Thursday 8th June – Election Day
- A large number of volunteers will be needed all day but especially in the afternoon & early evening. Again if you have any spare time at all this is a day on which your efforts will make a huge impact to the success of the campaign.
- As soon as election day plans are finalised (probably tomorrow) they will be circulated by the CLP but you can as always simply turn up at the Campaign HQ: The Elms Resource Centre, Manby Close (off Evans Street), Wolverhampton, WV6 0QR whenever you are able from 10am onwards.
Election Night Gathering:
Annie & Ray have very kindly agreed to host a night of “Films, Food, Solidarity, Friendship” (and possibly a beer or two we expect…) including a screening of Ken Loach’s “Spirit of ’45” from 10:30pm at:
St. Chad’s Vicarage
Bring some food & drink to share if you can.
By car: the best way is M5/J2 then straight up to Wolverhampton on A4123 (no matter what your sat nav says!)
Public transport: train to Wolverhampton Station or tram to city centre. A car isn’t essential but is helpful for travel to the various locations around the city where you may be working.
For all queries contact email@example.com
Burton Unite members in dispute with Argos –
let’s support them!
While of course the eyes of Momentum South Birmingham are mostly fixed on the general election and ensuring our city’s constituencies return Labour MPs, we should not forget that there are industrial disputes going on that can and should be supported. One of those is just down the road in Burton where Argos workers organised by the Unite union are on strike.
There is much more information here: please offer any help you can at this very busy time for all of us.
Our fundraising co-ordinator, Nicky, has drawn up a quick survey for members and supporters to fill in to canvass our views on what we want. If you have a spare couple of minutes please fill it in here.
MSB statement on the July 2015 ‘freeze date’ decision
The Birmingham Board of the Labour Party, in their infinite wisdom, decided to retain the July 2015 freeze date for members to participate in the selection of candidates for the 2018 local election elections. We have published a statement that you can read here and rest assured it will not be the end of the matter. Momentum seeks to get Labour members elected to public office. Labour will only succeed in doing that if it engages with its new members and gives them a say. The decision is a monumental act of folly.
‘Regional’ Momentum co-ordination
Cecile Wright, one of our elected NGC reps for the large ‘region’ that Birmingham and the West Midlands sits in, would like to keep in touch about how she can best open communication with us to better represent us on the Momentum Council. She wants people to feel free to get in touch with her and her email is firstname.lastname@example.org. As things develop further post-conference we’ll keep you informed.
The NUT have set up a school cuts website providing information on what is going on and the likely effects. You can email your MP through the website, it only takes a minute. Please click here. Since the New Year a number of parents groups have sprung up across the country to fight for more funding for our schools. It is an important development that parents have started to organise because Governments cross parents at their peril. Please visit their website.
South Birmingham Momentum T-Shirts
Not before time in our view, wear it with pride: MSB t-shirts are going to be ordered: £10 red with South Birmingham Momentum on it. If you would like one email
MSB social media classes and blog pitches
Nicky Brennan, one of our social media managers, has started running classes if you are uninitiated in Facebook and Twitter etc. and want to learn more about how to make best use of them – they are crucial part of modern political campaigning and you are never too old to learn something new! If you’re interested get in touch with Nicky: email@example.com
We are also looking to get more original content on our blog – it is a somewhat underused resource for discussing ideas and giving our members a platform to write about the issues of concern to them. Drop Nicky a line if you have any ideas – particularly if they are about local issues and our campaigning – or things you think we should be doing more on and want to draw attention to.
Ward and CLP meetings
If you want the group to publicise upcoming local Labour Party activities and branch and CLP meetings to encourage attendance, please let us know either by emailing me direct or the group account below; our wonderful social media managers Kate, Lucy, Nicky and Sam will do the rest!