The Papal visit seems to be dividing residents close to Cofton Park as much as the rest of the population.

Tonight, last minute preparations take place at the Park and roads around Longbridge, Rubery & Rednal are closed or have access limited

The children of St Columba’s RC School on Lickey Road have left their own messages out to greet the Pope.

As up to 50,000 people prepare to queue through the night with persistent rain forecast to attend the beatification of Cardinal Newman at Cofton Park, and thousands more plan to take to the streets on Sunday morning to greet the Pope as he travels by road to the Oratory in Edgbaston, others are preparing to express their disapproval of the visit.

Supporters of the Protest the Pope campaign have arranged a peaceful protest against the state visit outside tomorrow’s event. After consulting with West Midlands Police, the group have been permitted to stage a protest on the corner of Lickey Road and Low Hill Lane between 9am and 2pm tomorrow.

Event co-organiser, Alison Rawlinson told me, “If people value human rights, if they believe that the Vatican should undertake to have an international independent enquiry into the child abuse scandal, if they oppose discrimination based on gender or sexuality, if they believe that the Pope’s position on condom use is causing unconscionable suffering in the developing world, we would encourage them to join us in our protest against the state funding of a visit from the man who oversees all these anachronistic and evil policies.”

Full details on the protest can be found on the facebook group page for Protesting the Pope – Birmingham or you can follow the organisers on twitter

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