As Birmingham begins to re-open its doors post-lockdown, we thought we would share with our HELS students some of what is on offer in and around Edgbaston. We have researched places you can visit, enjoy and perhaps even get involved in close to our City South Campus.
Edgbaston is an affluent, leafy area of Birmingham, with parks and tree-lined streets. It’s the location of the Birmingham Botanical Gardenss and historical Winterbourne House, and is only about 3 miles from the city centre. There are two Universities, as well as our Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences, it’s also home to the University of Birmingham, and there are a variety of places of interest for students in and around the area.
Our City South campus is easy to get to by bus or train (Five Ways station) and the walk from the station takes you past many amenities, including Morrison’s, Costa Coffee, Boston Tea Party, and The Physician (pub).
Birmingham is known for its many canal routes, including The Worcester and Birmingham Canal, which was opened in 1815, and runs directly through the Edgbaston’s Calthorpe Estate. The canal was used to transport goods such as grain, farm produce and building materials to the north of Birmingham (plus raw ingredients to the Cadbury’s factory). Nowadays you can explore the canals with many different canal-path routes around Edgbaston to choose from.
If you’re a sports fan, you may already know that it’s an area of the city that hosts world class sport – both at The Edgbaston Priory (where professional tennis tournaments take place), and at Edgbaston Cricket Club and Stadium (which is the home of Warwickshire County Cricket Club and Birmingham Bears and hosts many international matches). Edgbaston also boasts a Croquet Club, which is said to be the premier venue in the West Midlands, and Edgbaston Golf Club, which is set over 144 acres of woodland. Yet, if you are just up for some sporting fun, Edgbaston can offer Mr Mulligan's Crazy Golf and Rock Up Birmingham, a rock climbing and adventure centre.
Birmingham is privileged to have lots of outdoor green spaces. In Edgbaston, you can take advantage of the vast Edgbaston Reservoir, which you can walk, run or cycle around. You can even participate in watersports courses.
Close to Edgbaston Cricket Ground is Cannon Hill Park, which is great to stroll around with path walks, woodlands and vast green areas. You can also join in activities such as mini golf, boating on the lake and tennis with friends. Situated within Cannon Hill Park is also the Midlands Art Centre, known better as the MAC, which is dedicated to bringing arts into the community. Here you can enrol on numerous courses and workshops, such as jewellery making, or study a new skill like learning an instrument. The MAC also provides entertainment including feature films and a variety of exhibitions. Find out more about the parks around our City South Campus.
Edgbaston offers a wide choice of tempting independent places to eat, drink and socialise with your friends, which even includes the lovely but rather high-end Michelin-starred restaurant, Simpsons. Also nearby are an independent ice-lolly establishment, La-Pop, where you can ‘build your own’ to suit your taste; The Blue Piano, a South East Asian restaurant and bar with a jazz and blues music venue; and Loki, a small independent wine tasting venue, wine merchant and delicatessen.
If you are into history, Birmingham has a wealth. It’s most associated with the Industrial Revolution, but the city’s history goes back much further. ‘Edgbaston’ appears in the Domesday Survey as ‘Celboldestone’, however, this is believed to be a misspelling of ‘Edgebaldestone’. You can still visit St Bartholomew’s Church, which is one of Edgbaston’s oldest. It’s now the parish church of Edgbaston, but previously it was the chapel of Edgbaston Hall. Edgbaston Hall is now part of The National Heritage List of England: Register of Parks and Gardens. You can walk around areas of the Hall including The Great Pool and Toll Gate House. Edgbaston Golf Club, has also acquired some of the Hall’s original grounds.
You can also explore some of Edgbaston’s history by visiting Edgbaston Mill, first recorded in 1231 and The Oratory church, which stands on Hagley Road. Find out more about Edgbaston’s heritage.
If you’re interested in art as well as history, The Barber Institute of Fine Arts has a collection of work by artists including Botticelli, Monet and Van Gogh and is home to a concert hall with ‘perfect acoustics, comfort, and rest for the eye’.
Further afield in Birmingham, you can explore Broad Street (10 minutes’ walk from campus), known mainly for its nightlife. The nearby area of Harborne is home to many independent shops and cafes. Also, a little over 3 miles by road, Cadbury World can cater for all your chocolatey needs.
Finally, if you’re interested in finding out more about the city why not take advantage of one of the many Meetup groups that are organised locally.
Learn more about our City South Campus
Read here about the facilities and scenic spots our City South Campus has to offer.