CLUB NEWS: Birmingham host public meeting

Birmingham Monarchs held their first ever public meeting last Thursday, with local residents turning out in force to hear their plans.

The Monarchs are being pro-active after failing to meet the strict criteria set to race in the Elite league this year, set out by its governing body, British Cycling.

The club have been in discussions with local council and HoBCSPAN to try and meet some of the criteria and are seeking funding and assistance to meet those needs.

Around 20 residents, plus local councillors Jon Hunt and Karen Trench, turned up to hear the plans and whilst it was at times a heated discussion it was still a rather positive one.

The residents main objection appeared to be that the club grew no bigger, or more alterations that might naturally affect their quality of living, whilst Councillor Hunt made note that we were being transparent and open and have a need to make some improvements.

One of our issues is no access to water, meaning the track is dry, slippy and dusty affecting local residents. A drain has been sourced with costing being looked into to dig with a mole to lay housing piping to attach at mains supply. This would have minimal disruption to the neighbourhood.

Generators are currently used to provide electricity, which have been deemed a noise factor, although the request to access electricity on site via cabling was met with some hostility.

Floodlights have been obtained for the use of occasional night meetings and permission has been requested to have these erected, something some of the residents are against.

Issues were raised about potential security problems with toilets being sought on site and increasing activity at the track, along with a suggestion of fencing with locked gates, plus conifers for added protection were met positively.

One of the overriding complaints to the councillors was the possibility of a move for the Monarchs across the road within the BMX complex. This is something the BMX group appear equally happy with and have land set aside for any such move. All these issues are being considered by the club and the Council.

This Sunday (19th June), Birmingham are back in Midland League against fellow Monarchs from Leicester. This promises to be a cracker with both teams unbeaten and Leicester topping the league table.

Something will have to give. Leicester have a strong and solid line up so Birmingham will need to be on their A game if they are to carry on their unbeaten start to the season.

Action gets underway at 1PM with the juniors beginning proceedings. The seniors take to the track at 2PM at Perry Hall Playing Fields. Refreshments are available on the day.