24 Reasons Birmingham Is Actually Great

Brummies, unite.

1. Lots of people like to make fun of Birmingham.

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2. Whether it’s Adrian Chiles’s various gaffes.

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3. Or our accent.

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4. But our detractors couldn’t distinguish between Black Country and Brummie.

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5. But we don’t mind the Yam Yams. We’re in good company, with Robert Plant.

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6. Julie Walters.

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7. Lenny Henry.

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8. As well as Mike Skinner.

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9. And Ozzy Osbourne.

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10. Tolkien grew up in Hall Green and Kings Heath, finding inspiration in places like Sarehole Mill and Moseley Bog (which became The Shire).

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11. We’ve more canals than Venice, and we’re not even sinking.

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12. And we’ve got those canals because we’re basically responsible for the Industrial Revolution.

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13. And later in our history, we were at the forefront of benign capitalism.

The Cadbury family built the Bournville area for its workers to live in and pioneered
concepts like employee pension schemes.

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14. We re-use our space well.

We sadly said goodbye to the HP Sauce factory in 2007, but we’ve also turned the old Bird’s Eye Custard factory into a thriving art, fashion and music hotspot.

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15. We host the biggest German Christmas market outside of Germany every year.

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16. But we’ve also got a Chinese Quarter, complete with a big pagoda.

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17. Oh, and the Balti originates in Birmingham.

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18. Birmingham Pride takes place in the gay village and attracts up to 100,000 visitors each year.

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19. Our city was chosen to rehabilitate Malala Yousufzai after she was shot for campaigning for female access to education in Pakistan.

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Having made her recovery, Malala was given a scholarship to a girls’ school in Birmingham.

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20. With the Spaghetti Junction, and the Five Ways Roundabout…

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21. …if you learn to drive in Birmingham, you can drive anywhere.

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22. No wonder Bill Clinton said Birmingham was ‘a jewel of a city’.

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23. And to all those who say Manchester is the UK’s second city…

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24. …in terms of history, culture, humour, industry, illustrious residents and ring roads, the city of Birmingham has only this to say.

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Ailbhe Malone is the UK lifestyle editor for BuzzFeed and is based in London.
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