Quite similar to the new Morrissey single, I spent the day in Birmingham yesterday. I don’t want this to turn into a thread of easy potshots against Birmingham, but it really is an odd city.
First, as a disclaimer, I grew up in the rural Midlands, with Birmingham as my closest city. I had been there loads of times before as a teenager for gigs and shopping, but yesterday was the first time I set a day aside to visit it and just walk around. Admittedly, I didn’t do any research, but in most cities, you can get away with that and still find lots of stuff. Not Birmingham though.
For a start, it was completely dead everywhere, which I found bizarre. There were hardly any signs or maps around, and few tourist attractions, also no parks (but lots of canals). I liked the library and the viewpoint and the Shakespeare room. It’s great for shops and chain restaurants, but not much else. Was I missing something?
It feels really strange as UK’s second biggest city. What is its future? What should I try and see next time?