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Latest News

Armed Forces Day held in Dartmouth Park for the first time

Saturday 24 June was a great day for Dartmouth Park when it hosted Armed Forces Day for the first time. It was a very colourful and entertaining event to celebrate and thank our Armed Forces for their service to the country.

The event started at 11am with the March under Commander Major Matthew Lindow RLC, followed by the raising of the Armed Forces Day flag and a Parade inspection. The inspection was carried out by Deputy Lieutenant of the West Midlands, Stewart Towe CBE DL, who also visited all the exhibitors and stall holders to thank them for their support.

Sergeant David Oakes and Sergeant Andrew Gilbert were presented with awards by the Mayor of Sandwell, and the Mayor's address was given by Captain Alan O'Brien, PSAO 237 (West Bromwich) Sup Sqn.

An Act of Worship was conducted by Reverend Dwayne McQuaid, Padre to Oldbury Royal British Legion.

It was then time for everyone to relax and enjoy the entertainment provided by Northfield Caledonia Pipes, dhol drummers, several singers, dance performers, and much more. There was also a very interesting display of army vehicles.

The Friends of Dartmouth Park were very pleased that their stall was well supported by visitors.

The photographs below give just a brief overview of the event.

Park's Water Play Area opens in time for this glorious June weather
Travelling the circular Route on the iconic No. 28 Bus
On Saturday 10 June we had a lovely time touring West Bromwich on a bus introduced into service in 1952. The tour evoked lots of memories for those who had used the bus during the years it was in service. We were a great attraction in the town, with people waving and taking photographs.

The 156 Group who restored and maintain the bus are from left to right in the photograph above: Mark Sherwood, who drove, Dave Wootton, Graham Harper, who purchased the bus 50 years ago, Howard Carter and Ian Rhydderch.

We had to have a morning and afternoon tour to accommodate everyone who wanted to take the opportunity to ride on the bus, and we had a buffet lunch between trips at the West Bromwich Bowling Club in Devonshire Drive.

The search is on for lovers of Dartmouth Park who would be willing to appear in a video talking about their memories and personal views relating to the Park. A team of volunteers under Matthew Wood, of The Change Consortium, would be very pleased to hear from people who would like to be part of this project. Matthew can be contacted on 0121 569 2615.

Green Flag Judges visit Dartmouth Park for an inspection

The sun shone for the Green Flag judges to inspect the Park on Friday 26 May. The Park looked stunning and was busy with families enjoying themselves.
The photograph above was taken from the viewing point at the top of the Pavilion and was a perfect place to get an overview of the Park and the Sandwell Valley beyond.  We are so lucky to have this wonderful greenspace in our Borough.

The judges were Sarah Reece Mills on the left of the photograph and Gary Nicholson on the right of the photograph, together with John Satchwell, Park Manager, Carol Hartill, Friends of Dartmouth Park, and Darren Jones, Manager for Parks and Countryside.

We look forward to learning the results of the judges visit in the near future.

Friends of Dartmouth Park's HLF project to rehouse the
West Bromwich Mural now complete with the launch of a book telling the story
of the project and William Burgess the artist responsible for the Mural

William Burgess and Carol Hartill
at the Book Launch

The project to remove William Burgess's West Bromwich Mural from the West Bromwich Building Society's old HQ in the High Street and rehouse it at Sandwell Park Farm started in 2015 with the HLF Grant. It was also in 2015 that the Building Society transferred its ownership to the Friends of Dartmouth Park.

When the Building Society moved to its new HQ in Providence Place in May 2016, our contractor moved into the old HQ, removed the mural and successfully installed it at Sandwell Park Farm. We held a launch invent in June 2016 to celebrate its relocation to its new home where it could be viewed by the general public.

There was a small amount of grant monies left and we approached the HLF with a proposal to produce a book recording William Burgess's work for the Building Society over a 20 year period, together with his many other commissions. The HLF agreed to this proposal and on the 23 May 2017 we held a small event to launch the limited edition book, entitled 'New Beginnings - The Story of the Saving of a Mural' and William presented copies to those people who had been involved in the project.

The Friends of Dartmouth Park are very pleased to be the proud owners of this wonderful artwork, and for it to be on display in its new home where it can be appreciated by the many visitors to Sandwell Park Farm.

The book will be available in local libraries and a copy is in the Mural Room at Sandwell Park Farm for visitors to view.

Wildlife of Dartmouth Park Video produced by
Mike Mountford and Mike Poulton

Mike Mountford and Mike Poulton set up their website earlier this year which can be accessed on our 'The Park' page. They have now produced a video of the Park and its wildlife which you can access via the following link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1u2l4wG-YuI&feature=youtu.be 

Contact Address: Carol Hartill
Secretary of the Friends of Dartmouth Park
c/o 2 Sandwell Road North, West Bromwich, B71 4JB
Tel: 0121 588 4747 / e-mail: carolh.fodp@btinternet.com
Tel 0121 525 5524 / e-mail: annette_welch@sky.com


Sue Slater
Roger Stopford
Vice Chairman
Annette Welch
Carol Hartill
Mandy Timms
Membership Secretary
Mark Barrett
Social Historian
Wendy Bodenham
Minute Secretary
Chris Burgess
Maggie Turner
Chris Blakesley
Yvonne Hayward
Margaret Geddes
Jenny Francis