Discover Birmingham

Just a few minutes’ train ride from our historic green campus, you will find Britain’s second largest city brimming with arts, culture and continuous discovery in the heart of the country. The vibrant city of Birmingham is your passport to a world of opportunity, less than two hours away from London.

Try our Top 10 tips to enrich your Languages, Cultures, Art History and Music studies in the city of Birmingham:

1. Watch a foreign language movie at The Electric Cinema, the UK’s oldest working cinema.

2. Experience an international performance or workshop in theatre, dance, opera, circus or music at one of our cultural venues, such as; the Birmingham Repertory TheatreMidlands Art Centre (mac) and Birmingham Hippodrome.

the-hippodrome-nutcracker-no-photo-credit3. Immerse yourself in the innovative BE FESTIVAL (shortened from Birmingham European Festival), which features a programme of theatre, dance, comedy, circus, music, visual and performing arts. Its ethos is to present works from a perspective of intercultural community and democracy; and each night of the festival features a famous interval dinner where the audience and artists dine together.

4. Visit our famous Frankfurt Christmas Market, the largest of its kind outside of Germany and Austria with over 180 stalls. Most students enjoy sampling the mulled wine and attempting to ice-skate, but many Modern Languages students also secure jobs there. They are encouraged to use their language skills to give "authenticity" to the Frankfurt market!

5. Explore one of our major galleries such as the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, which is home to the most important collection of Pre-Raphaelite art in the world and the Staffordshire Hoard – the largest collection of Anglo-Saxon gold and silver metalwork with over 3,500 items.

ikon-gallery-exterior-brindleyplace-march-2017-handover-agency-no-credit6. Marvel at one of our contemporary art exhibitions at the internationally acclaimed Ikon Gallery, technology-savvy Birmingham Open Media or at our regular Digbeth First Friday events, where the city’s thriving underground art scene comes alive with experimental performances, displays and the latest works from local artists, on the first Friday of each month.

7. Explore Birmingham’s brilliantly-preserved traditional English buildings turned into museums, including the Museum of the Jewellery Quarter, Aston Hall, Soho House, the Newman Brothers Coffin Works and the Birmingham Back to Backs.

8. Take advantage of discounted student tickets at the Town Hall and Symphony Hall to see the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO) perform, who offer a varied classical programme of orchestras and talented virtuosos. Many of our Music students have a chance to watch open rehearsals, join the CBSO Youth Orchestra or receive coaching from professional CBSO musicians.

9. Have an electric night out at a live music concert in the city. Venues range from the enormous Barclaycard and Genting Arenas - perfect for fans of rock, indie and pop - to more intimate settings in pockets of the city such as the Hare and Hounds, The Spotted Dog and The Jam House - ideal for fans of jazz, folk and rhythm and blues alongside more niche genres such as gypsy punk to electro-swing.


Photo credit Piet Hein Out

10. Get involved with the city’s cultural spaces and festivals by applying to volunteer or work with them. This will not only nurture your passion for arts and culture, but it will give you great skills and connections to help launch your career after your degree programme.