History & Evolution
Birmingham's recorded history goes back to the Bronze Age and beyond.
During this time, the city grew from a tiny Anglo-Saxon farming village into
a major industrial and commercial hub.
Birmingham had its first written mention in the Doomsday Book of 1086 as a
small village. It was initially occupied in Roman times with several
military roads and a fort.
As a convenient location for trade, the city developed itself into a
thriving market town in 12th century. Further due to large supplies of iron
ore and coal, the city established in metal working industries in 16th
century and during the Industrial Revolution grew rapidly as arms
manufacturer making it a major manufacturing hub.
A large network of canals was constructed across Birmingham from 1760-1820.
Then arrived the railways in 1837 and with the opening of Grand Junction,
Birmingham was linked to every corner of Britain.
During the Victorian era, with a rapid increase in population, Birmingham
became the second largest population center in England and the third in
Britain and due to its increasing importance was soon granted city status in
1889 by Queen Victoria.
During World War II Birmingham suffered a lot due to heavy bombings. But
the city was extensively re-developed during the 1950s and 1960s, with many
office buildings and ring roads turning it into a "concrete jungle".
But soon Birmingham again transitioned itself into a beautiful city turning
from an industrial center to a tourism and service economy.
Whether visited for business or for pleasure, Birmingham has variety of
things to see and do. Friendly and bustling, Birmingham is among most
visited cities, which lures and welcomes visitors all year long.
Till now known mainly for its industry and trade, the city now has a long
list of tourist sights too with parks, museums, churches and numerous
Run by the Cadbury Chocolate Company, Cadbury is a unique place to indulge
all of your senses.
Attraction comprises of a tour exhibiting the history of chocolate,
chocolate making, a gentle ride through a chocolate wonderland, a fantasy
factory and children's playground. There are also interesting theatre shows
with surprise shaking theatre seating.
Previously known as Council House Square, it was named after Queen Victoria
after her death in 1901 when her statue was erected here. It is considered
the center of Birmingham from where local road sign distances are measured.
The square was restructured in 1992 when a fountain sculpture called 'The
River' (better know as 'The Floozie in the Jacuzzi') was installed at the
Square which is now a famous attraction of the place.
Several public artworks are also displayed in Victoria Square like the
Iron: Man representing skills used by local craftsmen during the Industrial
The Park is one of the largest urban parks in Europe. Covering 900 hectares
(9.0 km²), Sutton Park is home to numerous wetlands, marshes, seven
lakes, extensive ancient woodlands, restaurants, two golf courses, a donkey
sanctuary, children's playgrounds and a visitors center.
Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery (BM&AG):
120 years old, beneath the clock tower, BM&AG is home to such
distinguishing artworks, which are the envy of world.
Possessing artifact from Renaissance masterpieces to 9,000-year-old
Middle-Eastern treasures, the museum also boasts of its Pre-Raphaelite
paintings and drawings of which it has the largest collection in the world.
This diverse and fascinating place resides most exclusive historic
collections including everything from local archaeology to world cultures.
Bronze Buddhas, Egyptian Mummies and fine arts from 14th century onwards are
just another exceptional feature of the gallery.
St Philip's Cathedral:
Church of England cathedral, St. Philips was completed in 1715 but
gained cathedral status in 1905.
Built of brick and faced with stone, it also has age-old stained glass
windows by Sir Edward Burne-Jones. During the World War II, the Birmingham
Civic Society removed and later reinstalled these glass windows to save them
from bomb damage.
The Cathedral is ranked as Grade I building, with six other listed
monuments in the churchyard like the Birmingham pub bombings memorial and
statue of Charles Gore.