Visit Knowle have had a busy 12 months in 2022. Here’s a review of what we’ve been up to.
Early in the year we hosted a Quiz Night to raise funds for the Jubilee Celebrations later in the year. We were joined by a number of teams who enjoyed a fun quiz and a fish and chip supper.
Our events team were busy working with other organisations including Arden Academy, Knowle and Dorridge Lions, Knowle Parish Church and Knowle Society to bring the village together in June to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. We enjoyed seeing residents come together to enjoy the artisan market, community stalls, entertainment, games and street food.
In July, it was great to see the streets lined to cheer on the local heroes who carried the Queen’s Baton during its relay preceding the Commonwealth Games.
Knowle has many listed buildings, and in October, we hosted a guided heritage walk down to Knowle Locks and back to the High Street.
During December we once again joined with Arden Academy, Knowle and Dorridge Lions, Knowle Parish Church and Knowle Society to enjoy the traditional countdown to the switch on for the Christmas Lights, followed by an evening of late night shopping, with even more businesses open than usual. We also organised a successful indoor Christmas gift market featuring local creators and businesses.
The year was rounded off with street entertainers in Knowle on the first three Saturdays of December, adding a festive atmosphere to the village.
At the beginning of the year, on a rainy day in January, our window vinyls were installed in four empty shop units to brighten up our High Street.
Our volunteers have volunteered for two town tidy days to keep our centre looking attractive.
In May, our parklet was installed on the High Street to brighten up the High Street and to provide seating for everyone to enjoy.
We’ve also worked with other organisations and Solihull Council to understand the current parking demand and provision in the centre of Knowle, creating a survey for businesses. We also worked with Knowle, Dorridge and Bentley Heath Forum on a parking survey for visitors to Knowle. We will continue this work into 2023.
Visit Knowle hosted five well attended informal networking events throughout 2022. In July, our commissioned photographer visited over 30 local businesses to create a portfolio of images for local businesses and for Visit Knowle to use.
We’ve taken opportunities throughout the year to connect with local media and with Small Business Saturday to shine a light on Knowle and it’s small local businesses.
We’ve kept members up to date with news and opportunities and issued a series of newsletters as we continue to grow in membership.
Our High Street has continued to be a vibrant place to shop, eat, drink and do business with at least 10 businesses making Knowle their home during 2023 and we closed the year with less empty units than we started with. Among the businesses we welcomed were Physio Health Matters, All About the Sew, Caroline Bramley Dress Boutique, Hampton Clinic, Howela, Monica’s Bakes, Swan Yard Coffee & Kitchen, Schmidt Solihull, Knowle Nails and Beauty and Eros.
Through the year, we’ve celebrated the successes and news from local businesses, continued our ‘Support Local’ campaign and we even picked up an award for ‘Outstanding Sales and Marketing’ with Solihull Chamber.
Looking forward to 2023
We look forward to another year of celebrating what we love about Knowle. Here’s just a snippet of what’s in store:
April: Fundraising Ball
June: Village celebration
November: Christmas Lights; Late Night Shopping
Further discussions on parking provision
Town Tidy Days
Projects to brighten up the centre
Spotlights on member businesses
Campaigns through the year
If you’d like to get involved in projects, or have any ideas on what you’d like to see in Knowle, then get in touch!