People have the bad habit of denigrating Birmingham, but I actually think its a really good city, it has a lot in it, I mean maybe not necessarily relative to its size, I think a lot of people’s main problem with it really though is that it doesn’t seem to have any nice coffee shops in the centre, just crappy chain ones like Coffee Heaven, which, you know, is important for a city, because I think to really like a place you have to see yourself hanging out in it on a regular basis. Either way though if Birmingham was about 1/3 the size everyone would like it, I just think everyone has elevated expectations because its so big. We can’t all be Manchester, you know? Either way I reckon for my money Birmingham’s top attraction is its mega-ace art nouveau (I don’t say this in a technical way, its just reflective of a lot of general early avant-garde tendencies kind of) cathedral, which from the outside looks more like a town hall or maybe a theatre than a cathedral, but inside is definitely all cathedral- the highlight being a set of four as-you-might-expect amazing windows by Edward Burne-Jones. [more on these later when the pics I took get developed and I can explain why they’re so cool visually]
But the centre of Birmingham’s ecclesiastical highlights don’t end here by any means, because right next to the Bull Ring shopping centre/area/whatever is the church of St Martin’s In The Bullring, which also has Burne-Jones windows and moreover enjoys the distinction of looking more like a cathedral than the actual cathedral. It is also in the group of ‘cathedral-like’ churches that includes, amongst others, Beverley Minster and Bath Abbey.
[I have more to write later]