Living and working in Birmingham

Birmingham is a major European centre and the second city of the United Kingdom with a diverse community that creates a vibrant, multicultural and exciting to place to live and work.

The heart of Birmingham is symbolised by Symphony Hall, considered one of the greatest concert venues in the world and a fitting home for the globally respected City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO).  At the magnificent Hippodrome Theatre is the internationally renowned Birmingham Royal Ballet, adding further cultural depth to the city.  A brand new £189m Library of Birmingham has recently opened, housing a collection of one million books, the library also has more than 200 public access computers, theatres, an exhibition gallery and music rooms making this the largest library in Europe.

Living in Birmingham

The Arts

The City Museum and Art Gallery houses the world’s finest collection of Pre-Raphaelite paintings, alongside a major collection of Old Masters, Modern and Contemporary pictures.  The restored Gas Hall Gallery has international touring exhibitions, while the Halcyon and Ikon galleries feature innovative contemporary works. National landmark sites abound, including the National Indoor Arena, the National Exhibition Centre, National Motorcycle Museum, National Car Heritage Museum, and the National Sealife Centre.

Shopping and leisure

The iconic Bullring is one of the largest dedicated shopping facilities in Europe. Sports and recreation are also well served; the city offers international Test cricket, top-flight football, International Championship golf and top-class rugby. The International Convention Centre and National Indoor Arena have spawned a whole new development at the centre of the city. The National Exhibition Centre, on the out skirts of the city, remains one of the largest exhibition facilities in Europe. Birmingham is also home to over 200 restaurant s serving up 27 different kinds of cuisine and has more Michelin starred restaurants than any other English city outside London.

Transport Links

Birmingham is at the crossroads of the UK’s motorways. From Birmingham International Airport, more than 50 different airlines operate scheduled services to 100 destinations worldwide. The University has its own dedicated railway station, while 50 million passengers a year use

Birmingham New Street Station, now Grand Central, will be at the centre of the proposed high speed rail network. London is 90 minutes away by shuttle service, with trains every 20 minutes until the evening.

More information about the University

Birmingham has been challenging and developing great minds for more than a century. Characterised by a tradition of innovation, research at the University has broken new ground, pushed forward the boundaries of knowledge and made an impact on people’s lives.

We continue this tradition today and have ambitions for a future that will embed our work and recognition of the Birmingham name on the international stage.

The University is in the midst of one of the most exciting and transformational campus redevelopments since the first phase of building on our Edgbaston campus was completed in 1909 under the auspices of Sir Aston Webb. The development projects, worth close to £500 million over a five year period, are creating outstanding new facilities which will benefit students, staff, visitors and the local community. Pioneering projects at other University sites are also ensuring that our investment is not confined to our main campus.

New library

The brand new main Library built at a cost of £60 million and described as heralding a new generation of libraries in UK higher education, is now open at the heart of the University.

University of Birmingham Library

New State of the Art Sport Centre

Our new, state-of-the-art sports centre will be a gateway to the University for students, staff and our local community when it opens in 2016. The £55m centre will encompass a unique raft of facilities, including Birmingham’s only 50m swimming pool, as well as a large multi-sport hall, a range of activity and fitness studios, a very extensive gym, six glass-backed squash courts and various other facilities.

Our performance in league tables and international rankings:

  • The Times and Sunday Times University of the Year for Graduate Employment 2015-16
  • Birmingham is 82nd in this year’s QS World University Rankings, cementing our position in the top 100 universities globally and placing us as 15th amongst UK universities
  • In The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2016, Birmingham is ranked 17th out of 121 universities surveyed.
  • Birmingham is ranked 15th in the Complete University Guide league table for 2017 and 27 of our academic subjects are ranked in the top 10 for their respective areas of study.
  • National Student Survey showing overall satisfaction now standing at 89%

Our Fellows programmes are just some of our sector leading initiatives. These initiatives are a testament to an institution that rewards and encourages excellence in research and education, and which has, unsurprisingly, seen impressive recent league table rises.

As well as an increased grant capture, partnerships with industry and an international presence in New Delhi, Guangzhou (China), Brussels and Brazil, we are recruiting undergraduate students with the finest academic credentials in our history and applications to study here in 2015 are growing rapidly.

The University community works together to enhance further our research and educational provision. Our policy-facing activity continues to go from strength to strength with notable success led by the College of Social Sciences - such as the Public Services Academy and the establishment of Policy commissions in Local Public services, Healthy Ageing, Wealth Distribution and drone technology. We are long established as leaders in the field of Medicine, with strengths in the research and treatment of cancer, heart, and liver disease as well as infections with a global significance including TB. In the Physical Sciences we boast outstanding academic and research credentials, including Chemical Engineering where we were recognised with a Queen’s Anniversary Prize in the Jubilee year.

As the UK’s first civic (red brick) University, we have been challenging and developing great minds for more than a century. The University of Birmingham School and Sixth Form will continue this tradition, providing an outstanding academic education for Birmingham’s young people and serving as a centre of teacher education in the region.

Through our strong international presence and high levels of student satisfaction, we receive over 75,000 applications each year from students wishing to study here and welcome 24,000 successful students to the campus from 150 countries. 

The University also provides itself with a number of cultural assets including:

Not only does Birmingham have serious ambition but we also have financial resources to realise those ambitions, and our plans for the future are underpinned by long established financial probity. We are large and understand the part we play in maintaining the local economy; we contribute £1 billion to our region’s economy. We also understand the importance of ensuring our institution’s future, our surpluses and substantial philanthropic support are re-invested into the intellectual and physical fabric of the institution, enabling us to plan with confidence for the future and to continue to invest in the facilities and services that are required for high- quality research, and an outstanding student learning experience.

Led by Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir David Eastwood, the University is structured for swift decision making, enabling us to capitalise on our academic range, financial strength and opportunities that emerge in the fast changing global HE environment.

Local Schools and Colleges

All children in England between the ages of five and sixteen are entitled to a free place at a state school. By law all children in the UK for more than a short stay should attend school full time from the age of five. Many schools take children from four years old.

To find out more about schools and colleges visit these pages

To search for local schools and colleges in your area please visit education.gov.uk/edubase

Finding a place to live

There is a high standard of all types of private accommodation, with high-quality affordable family housing in several attractive residential suburbs and excellent transport connections to smaller local towns.

For more information visit these pages

Relocation & Moving

If you are looking at relocating and moving the resources below may be of help.

Relocation companies*

Below are a couple of companies that may be able to help with giving an indication of cost for relocating. There are other companies that provide this service, and by including the examples below the University does not endorse their services. 

Momentus Relocations

Crown Relocations

Further Information

For more information on relocation and moving visit these pages

*The appearance on this page of links or product or service information does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by the University and it has not approved or investigated the claims made by the suppliers listed on these pages. Other suppliers are available and, upon your own enquiries, you may choose to use suppliers who are not listed on these pages. The University is not responsible for the accuracy or content of information contained in the external sites or for the service provided by each supplier and expressly disclaims all liability arising out of reliance on information contained within the external site or use of the supplier’s services

Benefits of working at the University of Birmingham

Knowing that you are supporting our groundbreaking research in areas such as treatments for childhood cancer through to rewriting Anglo Saxon history, can be rewarding in itself. There are however many more benefits available when working at Birmingham.

Find out more about benefits for staff here