Birmingham and Birmingham Attractions
Birmingham City Centre
I have recently left London and I am in fact staying with friends in Derby but we decided to spend the day meeting another university friend in Birmingham, one of the UK's most diverse and larger cities.
I tried to include various aspects of the landscape in Birmingham here including great architecture from different periods in history, art and sculpture and I also managed to see the Birmingham canal area which included many fancy restaurants where we eat Sushi. The video in this article is not as long as my previous films but it gives you a good idea of the architectural styles and there are a few buildings that aren't in my photographs.
I must admit until I had visited Birmingham recently I had the impression it was a very urbanised industrial city but this only seemed to be a small part because once we were in the city centre there was a lot of beautiful architecture, memorials and slick corporate office buildings.
Victoria Square was actually our last stop during our day spent walking around Birmingham centre and I think we actually ended up there by accident, however it was lucky we did because it was full of great art and historical treasures.
The building in my first photograph that includes the clock tower is the Birmingham council house and since people in Birmingham refer to themselves as 'Brummies' the clock was nicknamed 'Big Brum'! Construction first began on the building in 1871 and the with the aid of a £163,000(around £12m as of 2011) investment by the council, the Art Gallery and Museum was added.
In the photograph directly above we can see the Birmingham town hall which lies in between Chamberlain square and Victoria square, the memorial fountain is dedicated to Joseph Chamberlain who ordered the construction on the Birmingham council house. The town hall which is immediately adjacent to the Birmingham Conservatoire university building(not pictured) was created to host the Triennial music festival in 1784 but now is a venue for concerts and meetings.
Birmingham Shopping Centre
The Mailbox Birmingham is a high class shopping mall that includes designer shops, restaurants, office buildings and apartments and when we walked through it we exited at the very eloquent Birmingham canal pictured above.
If you are lucky enough to go on a sunny day you can take a boat trip down the canal on the 'bus boat' or dine upon one of the 'boat restaurants', we went for the cheaper option which was to simply walk but there are also pubs alongside the pathway towards the Birmingham NEC which is near the canal.
I was delighted to see an Antony Gormley sculpture when we entered Victoria square and I ran over saying, 'Wow, it looks just like the Angel of the North!', the piece above is titled Iron : Man and there is a rumour that it was covered from Princess Diana's view when she visited the square.
Art in Birmingham
Although I couldn't get a photograph of the Birmingham Bullring statue because too many children were surrounding it, I did find the 'Sphinx-like' statues called 'The Guardians' very attractive. These strange winged lions with human heads are supposedly meant to protect the god like 'Floozie in the Jacuzzi' figure that lies in another fountain which I was unable to photograph.
Lastly there was the cool statue that we saw near the restaurants behind the Birmingham Mailbox shopping complex, it includes a male figure holding shopping bags but with a bright red heart where his head should be! We thought it was similar to Banksy's scultural work.