Jewellery Quarter goes green with eco events and initiatives

Support for Cycle to Work Day.

Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter is leading the way with a whole host of activities and planned works, with the focus on encouraging native wildlife and providing a clean and enjoyable environment for everyone to enjoy, including a Sensory Garden and the first JQ urban beehive.

Situated opposite the Drop Forge, Hockley Hill, lays a floral display which has been created with a twist. Full of plants chosen specifically to attract local British wildlife, this sensory garden is funded entirely by the Jewellery Quarter Business Improvement District and instructs passers-by to ‘Look, Feel, Smell & Hear’, encouraging interaction with this corner of wildlife incorporated into the Jewellery Quarter landscape. Planted by Dim Meehitiya, who has a background in urban wildlife conservation & education spanning the last 15 years, the garden aims to be fully inclusive and accessible to all.

Another initiative being funded and organised by the JQBID is a community-wide clean-up across the entire Jewellery Quarter. This volunteer led initiative will take place on Friday 16th September between 2-4pm, for residents and businesses alike to join together and clean up the Quarter one bag of rubbish at a time. Volunteers will be provided with all the necessary tools and it’s hoped that the entire community will don some gloves, grab a litter picker and clean up the streets, providing a more welcoming environment for everyone. The BID will supplement this with a full cleaning regime starting at the end of October.

Luke Crane, manager of the Jewellery Quarter BID, says “We’re excited to be able to fund green initiatives such as our sensory garden. Encouraging and creating habitats for urban wildlife to thrive is a great way to get members of the community involved and interacting with the spaces around them.

“We hope that the Jewellery Quarter will become a place where a thriving community can cohesively integrate with the resident urban wildlife population, and the JQ Clean Up is one way of ensuring that our streets are welcoming not only to everyone who lives here, but to our native wildlife species.”

Cycle to Work Day, a national cycling initiative, is taking place on Wednesday 14th September and in support, the Jewellery Quarter’s Big Bike Day will be returning. As with previous events, the Urban Cycles team will be on hand in the Golden Square to offer bike servicing and advice completely free of charge, and the JQBID hopes Cycle to Work Day’s aim to see one million people regularly commuting to work by 2021 will be realised.

As well as these eco initiatives sponsored by the JQBID, other businesses in the JQ are also pursuing green projects. An exciting development also turning the Jewellery Quarter into a greener, eco-friendlier space is the New Standard Works transformation by education charity, Ruskin Mill Trust. The second phase plans involve transforming the formally unused rooftop into a thriving garden where students from the Argent College will grow their own veg, ready to be transformed by the kitchen downstairs. It will also be the home to the first resident JQ beehive, which will play their part in pollinating the surrounding fauna.