Colors: Purple Color

Mark Rogers, Chief Executive of Birmingham City Council said: “Dr Mashuq Ally is retiring from Birmingham City Council at the end of August. His leadership and contribution to tackle inequalities in the city leaves a positive and significant legacy in Birmingham. I would like to thank Dr Ally for all his hard work in the field of equalities.” In light of Dr Ally’s retirement, over the autumn there will be a review of the longer term organisational arrangements for equalities, cohesion and community safety in the city council.

A trade mission, organised by JAMPRO, the Jamaican government agency which promotes export business opportunities, brought six representatives for their MICAF Fresh Produce trade mission to visit Grace Foods UK's headquarters in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire. The group heard about the growing demand for Caribbean food and drink in the UK, and how Grace Foods' authentic Jamaican products had helped them to establish a strong, market-leadership position.

A new law that came into force on August 1 will help people recover damages they are owed from a business that has become insolvent. Alex Jakubowski, Commercial Litigation Partner at solicitors Clarke Willmott LLP, says The Third Party (Rights against Insurers) Act 2010 will mean that many people will now find it easier to pursue a claim against a defendant’s insurers if the insured is or has become insolvent.

Law firm Clarke Willmott LLP has advised on the multi-million pound acquisition of telecoms provider Evolve by communications specialist Onecom. Onecom will take over Evolve’s operations in London, Cambridge and Shoeburyness, along with Cardiff-based The Word, which is owned by Evolve and will become Onecom’s first office in Wales. The deal is expected to bring Onecom an additional £7m of earnings before tax and deductions (EBITDA) in the first 12 months.

Waitrose has become the UK's first major supermarket brand to operate a cashless store after opening in Sky's new flagship head office building at its campus in Osterley. It is the first Waitrose to open on a workplace campus in almost 20 years and at 1,400 sq ft becomes the second smallest store in the retailer's estate. The little Waitrose branded shop is located inside Sky's new office building - Sky Central - which will be home to more than 3,500 staff.

A Bellway Site Manager has won one of the house-building industry’s most prestigious awards for the fourth consecutive year, for his work at a development of new homes in Solihull. Steve Brown received a Quality Award in the National House Building Council’s (NHBC) annual Pride in the Job awards for his work at Dickens Manor, a development of 125 new homes being built on land off Dickens Heath Road.

City of Wolverhampton Council has joined forces with city partners to provide support to the BHS workers set to lose their jobs at the Dudley Street store. The famous British retailer is currently in consultation with its staff after announcing it will be closing its outlets across the country. The Wolverhampton store will cease trading on Wednesday, August 3. It employs 100 staff, all from the city, many of whom have vast years of experience in the retail industry.

Brits struggle to concentrate on their job for longer than 40 minutes, but the answer could be in their diet, new research reveals. The study of 2,012 workers conducted by crop association British Sumer Fruits found that, on average, people can only concentrate for 48 minutes before they become distracted. But those who considered themselves to be very healthy eaters can concentrate for nearly a full hour (56 minutes), 17 per cent higher than the average.

A Birmingham company that makes colour-coded musical instruments for young learners has secured two major new export contracts to the USA and Australia and looks set to achieve £1 million worth of overseas orders. Shades CP Ltd, which developed a colour-coding method that enables children to learn a range of instruments such as guitar, ukulele, harmonica, and violin, has seen a significant boost in overseas business after it secured new orders at the globally renowned Nuremburg Toy Fair in Germany in January.

The changing future energy demands of eleven major British cities, including Birmingham, are revealed in a new report published today by Smart Energy GB, the voice of the smart meter rollout. This is the first time that predictions about future increases in energy demand in the UK have been analysed and published on a city level.

Severn Trent has warned its customers to be vigilant after receiving reports that callers from ‘The Water Board’ have been trying to gain entry to people’s homes. Recent reports in both the East and West Midlands have followed similar patterns of individuals trying to con their way into people’s homes by claiming to work in the water sector.

Rising costs and gentrification have put Birmingham’s historic Jewellery Quarter at risk of losing the trade which made the area famous around the world, businesses and academics have warned. The area’s jewellery makers and experts from Birmingham City University have said that spiralling rental costs and ‘inappropriate developments’ are making it difficult for the district’s traditional industry to continue trading.

Cleaner, greener buses will be coming to Birmingham after £3milllion was awarded to a city council-led partnership project by the Department for Transport and the Office for Low Emissions Vehicles. Commenting on the support shown for the scheme, Anne Shaw, Assistant Director for Transportation and Connectivity at Birmingham City Council said: “It is great that our efforts to work in partnership with transport operators to make Birmingham’s air cleaner are being backed by government.

West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson is committed to recruiting more BME officers so the force looks more like the region it serves. Mr Jamieson made a pledge at a BAPA (Black & Asian Police Association) student officer development event at Tally Ho! in Birmingham, also attended by Assistant PCC Ashley Bertie who echoed the commitment. The West Midlands is made up of nearly three million people, around a third of whom are from BME backgrounds.

Future Faces - the young professionals’ arm of Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce – has announced the shortlist for its second annual awards. The winners will be revealed at Future Faces’ annual dinner at Edgbaston Stadium on Friday 16 September. As well as the five main categories, the Future Faces Ambassador and Venue of the Year awards will also be announced on the night.