Feedback from Welcome to Selly Oak Day – top issues, queries and answers

Great day yesterday in Selly Oak welcoming students new to and returning to the area.  Thanks to all those people who stopped by at Grange Road to chat to staff and officers from the Police, Fire Service, University, Guild and Birmingham City Council.  And great also to see the Guild Exec and Councillor Karen McCarthy stopping by to help out.

At Grange Road, in windy conditions and under a slightly dubious gazebo there was lots of interest in Selly Watch and Immobilise, with several hundred students signed up to/registered on each.  If you couldn’t make it down yesterday though, we will be back next Wednesday from 11am-3pm outside the main libary on campus and then back to Grange Road the same on Thursday 11th.  If you want to get your phone or laptop onto the national property database, sign up to Selly Watch or simply want find out more about these, just click on the links.

Community Wardens and Police Officers registering phones onto Immobilise – the National Property Database

All of our freebie items for the day also quickly went, with everything from Heinz safe cans, timer switches, pens, energy saving plugs, key-rings, sticker sheets and all sorts of literature about housing, fire safety and crime all finding themselves, hopefully, good homes.  We will be stocking back up though for next Wednesday, if you missed out yesterday.

Then it was onto Tiverton and Dawlish Road, where every door was knocked by a small army of Police Officers, Guild Community Wardens, Fireman and City Council Officers.  Thanks to all those students who opened their doors, despite the pouring rain.  Lots of issues identified and hopefully lots of questions answered.  We will be back in the area next week so get in touch if you would like a visit or have any questions.  The top issues identified on the doorsteps and some of the answers to the frequently asked questions:

Top issues and your questions, answered:

Refuse and recycling collection days and boxes – For most of Bournbrook (apart from Bournbrook Road (Tuesday) and Grange, North and Dale Roads (Thursday)), refuse collection day is every Wednesday.  Put your black bags out the night before.  Recycling collections start from next week and are then every fortnight.  Click on the link to check what day your street’s collection is on Refuse & Recycling Collection Days in Selly Oak.  If you have just moved in and need to request blue and green recycling boxes, click here to make your order – there is no charge for this.

Front gardens – lots of rubbish in the front gardens already.  It’s important to keep on top of this for four reasons – 1) it reduces the amount of food available for the already significant rat population in the area and reduces the chances of an infestation near or at your house, 2) it keeps the opportunities for arson down and 3) if there are burglars active in the area, an untidy front garde is often a sign of lack of care for the house and potential careless security so can make you a target and 4) it just makes the area look a bit nicer.

Smoke alarms – If you haven’t done so yet check your smoke alarm and make sure you don’t overload your electrical sockets.  For more information head onto the West Midlands Fire Service website section on private renting.

Keep your windows, doors and gates closed and locked – we saw lots of first floor rear windows open and too many open doors and ground floor windows.  People living in the ground floor bedrooms and first floor rear bedrooms (with flat/sloped roof access) need to take extra care and responsibility not just for their rooms and their stuff but for the whole house.  And keep your side gates locked, to protect not just your house but your neighbours too.

Reporting crime, anti-social behaviour and noise nuisance – there were some concerns about neighbours or people generally in the area.  In an emergency, or if you feel threatened or are witnessing a crime always call 999.  For queries and to report anti-social behaviour phone the Police via 101.  If you have concerns about noise go to the anti-social behaviour and noise section to find out how to report it and the help available.

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