Diamonds in the rough: LGBTQ+ history walking tour

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Wednesday 15 February 2023 (00:00)

Pete Collins

A unique tour for University of Birmingham staff and students with storytelling exploring queer history in the Jewellery Quarter Cemeteries for LGBT History Month.

Who are Birmingham's Diamonds in the Rough?

Right in heart of the U.K's jewellery trade, where over 40% of the country's bling is produced, Key Hill and Warstone Lane Cemeteries have been receiving the Birmingham dead since the 1830s - and amidst the thousands of Brummies buried there until the 1980s, are notable LGBTQ+ lives.

Lives that have historically been hidden, ignored or kept hush-hush. In the 21st century we want to celebrate and reclaim these lives by honouring the people who lived and loved in a way that wasn't acceptable to the society in which they lived. Following on from other successful LGBTQ cemetery explorations in Brompton and Arnos Vale cemeteries, join historians Sheldon K. Goodman and Sacha Coward of Cemetery Club (who have previously revealed the queer dead of Brompton and Arnos Vale cemeteries) have worked with Jewellery Quarter Cemetery Project to bring you Diamonds in the Rough!

Throwing a queer spotlight on some remarkable LGBTQ people in these historic places of rest for LGBT History Month, through storytelling and live performance!

We'll meet outside the Rose Villa Tavern and walk across to the cemeteries together. This tour will last approx. 2 hours and will take place outside so please dress warmly and keep an eye on the weather forecast. The group size is limited so booking is essential. Although the paths in the cemeteries have been resurfaced, the ground around some graves is uneven, so please wear sturdy footwear. 

The tour take place on 15 February and there are three tour options available.

11:00 - 13:00
14:00 - 16:00

18:00 - 20:00* (*This tour takes place at dusk and there are no street lights in the cemeteries, so please be aware that light levels will be low but torches will be provided).

Accessibility information for this event

Open to all UoB staff and students

Culture and collections

Schools, institutes and departments

Services and facilities