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BirminghamWeAre

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BirminghamWeAre is a community devoted to social value, providing a shared space for people who make a difference and together have a positive social impact across the City.

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Construction & regeneration
08 Nov 2019 - Stephen Giles
Gallery

Work progresses at pace at The Mercian, Broad Street, Birmingham - see our November 2019 update

Take our post for an early November update of the construction work at The Mercian including some great photography. 

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Work progresses at pace at The Mercian, Broad Street, Birmingham - see our November 2019 update





Take our post for an early November update of the construction work at The Mercian including some great photography. 


Both cores have risen considerably since the last update, with the main core now sitting pretty at level 4. Just a mere 38 to go!

The pumping of concrete continues, as does the construction of new floors, as seen below.

Picture from MODA Reachtimelapse webcam

On the left hand side nearest the camera sits the only patch of land on site yet to see a floor. However, the vultures are quickly closing in.

A new floor is sweeping across from Tennant Street towards Broad Street at a quick rate, and given the frenzied nature of works here, it's only a matter of time before the whole site is officially filled in and 'The Mercian' can rise as one.

As stated in the last update, the main core will feature three public lifts, including a goods lift and a stairwell. This will allow access up to floor 42.

The secondary core, which you can see directly behind the main one, will service up to floor 14.

Photos by Daniel Sturley & words by Stephen Giles

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60 passion points
Art, culture & creativity
07 Nov 2019 - Daniel Sturley
Gallery

My Favourite 50 Photographs in Birmingham - July - October 2019

Here's a gallery of my top 50 favorite photos that I've taken in Birmingham between 1st July & 31st October. On October 5th I caught the Black Sabbath Bridge monument on Broad Street in great light, looking moody but bright & jolly too.

 

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My Favourite 50 Photographs in Birmingham - July - October 2019





Here's a gallery of my top 50 favorite photos that I've taken in Birmingham between 1st July & 31st October. On October 5th I caught the Black Sabbath Bridge monument on Broad Street in great light, looking moody but bright & jolly too.

 


The 'Secret Garden' atop the Library of Birmingham - 11th July

The 'Secret Garden' atop the Library of Birmingham - 11th July

The 'Secret Garden' atop the Library of Birmingham - 11th July

On the Roof of Fort Dunlop - 12th July

The City Skyline from Fort Dunlop - 12th July

Looking Towards Hodge Hill from the Roof of Fort Dunlop - 12th July

The City Skyline at Dusk from Fort Dunlop - 12th July

The Full Moon Over Arena Central - 16th July

The 'Birmingham Family' Statue in Centenary Square - 25th July

Looking Over Brindleyplace in the Westside - 27th July

Multi-coloured Lights on the Top of Bank Tower Two on Broad Street  - 7th August

The Hyatt Regency Hotel - 12th August

Looking Down Great Charles Street from the Hyatt Regency Hotel - 12th August

One Chamberlain Square and the Snow Hill Complex from the Hyatt Regency Hotel - 12th August

One and Two Chamberlain Square from the Hyatt Regency Hotel at Dusk - 12th August

Crane, Moon and Jet Trails Over Arena Central - 16th August

The Concrete Core of 103 Colmore Row from Highgate - 24th August

The Birmingham City Skyline from Egg Hill in Frankley 6 miles to the South West - 24th August

The Westside City Skyline just before Sunset - 25th August

One and Two Chamberlain Square - 27th August

The 7th Floor Interior of One Chamberlain Square - 28th August

Architectural Detail in One Chamberlain Square - 28th August

The Library of Birmingham at Night - 31st August

The Crane at Paradise Birmingham with the Library - 1st September

One of the New LED Lamp Poats at Arena Central - 1st September

Arena Central - 1st September

'New Growth' from the Library of Birmingham - 8th September

The Library of Birmingham - 8th September

The Ikon Art Gallery Tower Reflected in the Water Feature in Oozells Square at Brindleyplace - 11th September

One of the New Light Masts in Centenary Square - 14th September

The Closest I get to a Selfie

Guru Nanak Nishkam Sewak Jatha / Saint Michael's Parish Handsworth - 14th September

Smethwick Jamia Masjid with Dudley Castle in the Distance from the Library of Birmingham - 14th September

The Moon Over the Hyatt Regency Hotel - 15th September

The Moon Over Arena Central and Beetham Tower - 15th September

The View Down Suffolk Street Queensway from the Library - 15th September

The New Pool in Centenary Square from the 'Secret Garden' atop the Library - 16th September

A Crane Struugles with the Removal of the Concrete Core Over-run from 103 Colmore Row - 19th September

The Westside City Skyline at Sunset - 20th September

The Westside City Skyline at Dusk - 21st September

The Concrete Core of 103 Colmore Row - 22nd September

One Chamberlain Square Reflected in Two Chamberlain Square - 22nd September

The 'Secret Garden' atop the Library - 5th October

Baskerville House in Centenary Square - 6th October

Moody Sky Over Arena Central - 6th October

Crane at 103 Colmore Row - 20th October

The Water Feature in Central Square in Brindleyplace - 20th October

The Ferris Wheel in Centenary Square - 28th October

The Ferris Wheel in Centenary Square - 28th October

Photos by Daniel Sturley

 

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60 passion points
Art, culture & creativity
07 Nov 2019 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Magical Lantern Festival 2017 at Kings Heath Park

The Magical Lantern Festival returned to Birmingham for the Christmas 2017 season, but this time at Kings Heath Park, having been at the Botanical Gardens the year before. I only really saw it in the daylight hours. Looked "magical" with the snow of December 2017. Did return once more at Christmas Eve, but didn't book a ticket to see after dark.

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Magical Lantern Festival 2017 at Kings Heath Park





The Magical Lantern Festival returned to Birmingham for the Christmas 2017 season, but this time at Kings Heath Park, having been at the Botanical Gardens the year before. I only really saw it in the daylight hours. Looked "magical" with the snow of December 2017. Did return once more at Christmas Eve, but didn't book a ticket to see after dark.


See also my Magical Lantern Festival post on the 2016 event at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens.

After getting some initial daylight photos from the 11A or 11C buses on the Vicarage Road in November 2017, I went to Kings Heath Park on the 8th December 2017 after it had snowed. Tickets to go after 5pm would have been anywhere between £15 to £17. But Kings Heath Park was open as normal before then for free.

A pink canopy of roses surrounded by snow.

Santa with his reindeer near the entrance.

Would assume that at nightfall you would walk under this archway.

Snow covered presents, Christmas trees and a house with a boy.

Snow covered elf.

I wan't sure if this was Angry Birds or Rio?

Santa clock lamppost.

Red boot with presents.

Reindeer covered in snow looking sky blue in colour.

2017 "Merry Christmas" and Santa on a relaxing armchair reading a list of kids present wishes. Why fly to Lapland when you could go to Kings Heath Park (2 years ago that is).

I last came back on Christmas Eve 2017, by then the snow had melted, so looked a lot less Christmasy.

Fun fair rides under wraps. They probably open them up just before it gets dark. In the day they were covered over.

Polar bears. Now if only I got them with the snow.

Some kind of flowers I would guess.

Polar bears again from another angle.

Oh look it's the red boot with presents again, but no snow this time.

Giant butterfly on a tree.

More flowers along side a path, on the leaf covered soil area.

In the pond was a frog (I think). Or some kind of pond monster?

These swans look real, but they are jusr Magical Lanterns!

The Birmingham skyline. I would guess this would look nice lit up after dark.

Link to the Botanical Gardens post Magical Lantern Festival 2016 Birmingham Botanical Gardens .

More photos here on my Flickr Magical Lantern Festival including photos from 2016 to 2018.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

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80 passion points
Construction & regeneration
07 Nov 2019 - Daniel Sturley
Gallery

The Construction of Two Chamberlain Square - November 2019

Two Chamberlain Square currently offers some great reflections of the Museum and Art Gallery, the Joseph Chamberlain Monument and the Council House while we wait for the new renovated Chamberlain Square to open. All these taken from the entrance to the Museum.

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The Construction of Two Chamberlain Square - November 2019





Two Chamberlain Square currently offers some great reflections of the Museum and Art Gallery, the Joseph Chamberlain Monument and the Council House while we wait for the new renovated Chamberlain Square to open. All these taken from the entrance to the Museum.


Photos by Daniel Sturley

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100 passion points
Open spaces
06 Nov 2019 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

Old Square from Tony Hancock to the Kenneth Budd mural

Old Square in Birmingham is the square / island between Corporation Street and The Priory Queensway. One way leads to the courts and Aston University. The other way to the shops. It used to be a Georgian square but the square has been redeveloped over the centuries. From the 1960s to the early 2000s there used to be subways and a sunken area here. Now known for the Tony Hancock statue.

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Old Square from Tony Hancock to the Kenneth Budd mural





Old Square in Birmingham is the square / island between Corporation Street and The Priory Queensway. One way leads to the courts and Aston University. The other way to the shops. It used to be a Georgian square but the square has been redeveloped over the centuries. From the 1960s to the early 2000s there used to be subways and a sunken area here. Now known for the Tony Hancock statue.


I don't really take photos much any more in this square, so most of my photos are from 2009 or 2010. The more recent photos from when there was a Birmingham City Centre Floral Trail sculpture there, or a Big Hoot owl or Big Sleuth bear.

 

Some history from Wikipedia: Old Square was the site of the Priory of St Thomas of Canterbury Which was here until 1536, and demolished by 1547 (during the Dissolution of the Monasteries under Henry VIII). The site was in ruins for 150 years until it was purchased by John Pemberton in 1697. He levelled the land to create the Priory estate.

The square dates from 1713. Various Georgian town houses were built around the square. The inventor of the English Dictionary, Dr Samuel Johnson visited his friend who lived in Old Square, a Surgeon and Doctor - Edmund Hector (who lived at No 1 Old Square), before he died in December 1784. Lloyd the Banker lived at 13 Old Square in 1770. Later Samuel Galton Jr lived at no 13 Old Square. One of the members of the Lunar Society.

 

The mural by Kenneth Budd dates to 1967 and depicts the history of Old Square. This view from May 2009. Looking in the direction of The Wesleyan up The Priory Queensway.

This view from September 2009.

Corporation Street would cause the demolition of many of Old Square's Georgian houses in 1882, as well as the construction of the Lewis's department store in 1885, built over The Minories.

Looking towards The Minories in December 2009. The Minories was refurbished and reopened as shopping arcade in October 1994. Temple Court and The Priory Court are based in this building now. The Lewis Building was refurbished in 2017 and 2018.

After WW2 The Priory Queensway was developed and that led to the creation of Priory Square. From the 1960s, the area was sunken and had subways at all four corners.

By the early 2000s the subways were demolished and the square rebuilt at surface level. Making it easier to get from the shops to the courts to Aston University. Old Square was enhanced in 1998. A plaque was unveiled in September 1998 near the Old Square mural.

 

This view of Old Square from October 2010.

Christmas tree in Old Square during December 2009. The statue of Tony Hancock is on the left.

The Christmas tree in December 2009. From this side near Corporation Street. The Minories is to the left (not in the photo). Opposite was a Post Office (on the left now Sainsbury's Local) and Tesco Express (to the right). Cannon House and Priory House on the left. With Maple House to the right.

The next time you are crossing Old Square to or from The Minories. Stop to look down on the pavement. There is this Figure of Justice. Seen in December 2009. The courts including the Victoria Law Courts (Birmingham Magistrates Courts) and the Elizabeth II Law Courts are in the other direction down Corporation Street.

The statue of Tony Hancock in Old Square seen during May 2009. In the direction of Corporation Street (towards New Street).

Hancock was born in Hall Green in 1924. The statue was made by Bruce Williams and unveiled in 1996 by Sir Harry Secombe.

Famed for his 1960s comedy show Hancocks Half Hour, he sadly committed suicide in 1968.

Seen during the Birmingham City Centre Floral Trail 2012 was Paralympian Blade Runner. It was sponsored by the Colmore Business District. Based on Richard Whitehead from Nottinghamshire. It was number 20 on this trail. They were out for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Seen in August 2012.

The Big Hoot Birmingham 2015 was an art sculpture trail of painted owls all around Birmingham. In July 2015, after the trail had started, I saw Dotty in Old Square. The artist was David Graham and the sponsor was Cross Country Trains (I think they have offices in Old Square).

Two years on, and another art trail, this time of bears. The Big Sleuth Birmingham 2017 was around Birmingham, Solihull, Sandwell and Dudley! Vincent the Bipolar Bear. Designed and created by mental health patients at St Andrew's Healthcare (Birmingham) facilitated by Marcela Stenson. Funded by St Andrew's Healthcare. This view towards Sainsbury's Local.

A backpack on the back looking towards the National Express West Midlands buses on Corporation Street. Including at least two grey Platinum buses.

Old Square has always been a good route to get from Aston University along Corporation Street. Then through The Minories towards Bull Street (now passing over Bull Street Tram Stop). And then up Temple Row passing Birmingham Cathedral. Or you could head up the Great Western Arcade towards Colmore Row and Birmingham Snow Hill Station. Or down the North Western Arcade to another part of Corporation Street. You would regularly see buses heading around the island.

 

See also my Old Square album on Flickr for more photos.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

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