Popular
Points
24K
PhotographyWeAre

We love sharing great photography

PhotographyWeAre is a community devoted to photography, providing a space for people to share their passion for all things photography.

Launch date: June 2019
Combined FreeTimePays following: 101K


Community sponsors:

Art, culture & creativity
27 May 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Doctor Who, The Big Hoot & Sleuth at The Mailbox and BBC Birmingham

Lets jump in the TARDIS and go back to The Mailbox and BBC Birmingham when it was safe to do so. For many years there has been a Doctor Who TARDIS at BBC Birmingham, and a Dalek. In 2015, The Big Hoot was on. Then in 2017 it was the turn of The Big Sleuth.

Related View community

Doctor Who, The Big Hoot & Sleuth at The Mailbox and BBC Birmingham





Lets jump in the TARDIS and go back to The Mailbox and BBC Birmingham when it was safe to do so. For many years there has been a Doctor Who TARDIS at BBC Birmingham, and a Dalek. In 2015, The Big Hoot was on. Then in 2017 it was the turn of The Big Sleuth.


Thank you BBC Birmingham / BBC Midlands Today for running a story about the Creatives We Are competition (and using one of my photos on lockdown). Lockdown photo contest to create 'lasting memory'.

If you watch Beccy or Shefali's Insta stories, they are sometimes in the BBC dressing room, and you can see the Birmingham We Are calendar in the background.

DOCTOR WHO

Going back years before our current period when I saw a TARDIS and Dalek from Doctor Who at BBC Birmingham in The Mailbox.

The TARDIS seen in the window of BBC Birmingham from The Mailbox in July 2010. At the time The Doctor was the Tenth Doctor (David Tennant).

In July 2017, I had to sign a form before I could go around BBC Birmingham, while The Big Sleuth was on with it's Little Bears Detective Club. The TARDIS had been moved by this point. The Doctor by now was The Twelth Doctor (Peter Capaldi).

There was also a Dalek inside, from around the 9th and 10th Doctor eras (2005 - 2010).

I'd earlier seen it in the window of BBC Birmingham during May 2017. DO NOT TOUCH THE DALEK.

Behind was BBC Blue Room. Was a Nando's opposite. EXTERMINATE, EXTERMINATE, EXTERMINATE!!!!

At the time you could see the Dalek through the window at BBC Birmingham. If you were going on a tour of the Beeb, you could head upstairs for more. For a few years the TARDIS was visible in this window.

THE BIG HOOT BIRMINGHAM 2015

In July 2015, The Big Hoot owl sculpture trail was on all around Birmingham, and that included in The Mailbox.

Near BBC Birmingham was a Big Hoot Owl called Peacock. By the artist Jane Anderson. The Mailbox was the sponsor.

A man was on a saxophone, then some men moved it to the other side closer to the BBC.

Two strong men moving the Peacock owl back near BBC Birmingham.

Inside the foyer of BBC Birmingham was The Big Hoot's Little Hoot. Five small owls painted by schools. There names were as follows: Chilw-owl, Lileigh, Seasonal Owl, MoMo and The High Five Values. I didn't make a note of who the schools were at the time.

THE BIG SLEUTH BIRMINGHAM 2017

Seen outside of Harvey Nichols in July 2017 was the Peaky Blinders Bear. By the Castle Galleries artist Jon Jones, endorsed by series creator Steven Knight in partnership with Retail BID. The Mailbox was the sponsor.

BY ORDER OF THE PEAKY BLINDERS

On the back of the Peaky Blinders Bear was Tommy Shelby (played by Cillian Murphy).

THIS IS OUR CITY ~ THOMAS SHELBY

Bradley's Bear was in the hallway outside of BBC Birmingham (and near the restaurants). While it is a little bear, it was not part of the Little Bears Detective Club. It was designed by Bradley Simpson with thanks to the Retail BID and was brought to life by Donna Newman.

When I went into BBC Birmingham to find The Big Sleuth presents the Little Bear's Detective Club, I had to sign a form when I went in. I found about 7 little bears in total (may have missed one or two?)

Charlie McCheery designed by Kings Heath Primary School.

Bear Grylls created by The Oaks Primary School.

Totally Tropical Bear created by Wheelers Lane Primary School.

The Great Bear created by Colmore Junior School. School sponsored by College of Medical and Dental Science, University of Birmingham.

Fox Hollies School Sun Bear created by Fox Hollies School and Performing Arts College.

Lulu created by Bishop Challoner Catholic College.

Bournville Unwrapped created by Bournville School.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Thanks to all my followers.

Share  Connect with us
50 passion points
Classic Architecture
27 May 2020 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

The Blue Coat School from Colmore Row to Edgbaston

Did you know that The Blue Coat School in Birmingham was founded in 1722, and was located at a site on Colmore Row on what is now St Philip's Place from 1724 until 1930 (opposite what was St Philip's Church). They moved to a site in Edgbaston near Harborne on Metchley Lane and Somerset Road. The new buildings were built in the 1930s on the site of what was Harborne Hill House.

Related View community

The Blue Coat School from Colmore Row to Edgbaston





Did you know that The Blue Coat School in Birmingham was founded in 1722, and was located at a site on Colmore Row on what is now St Philip's Place from 1724 until 1930 (opposite what was St Philip's Church). They moved to a site in Edgbaston near Harborne on Metchley Lane and Somerset Road. The new buildings were built in the 1930s on the site of what was Harborne Hill House.


The Blue Coat School

The Birmingham Blue Coat School was founded in 1722, and was originally located at a site on Colmore Row opposite St Philip's Church from 1724 until they moved to a site in Edgbaston (near Harborne) in 1930. The school was founded by Reverend William Higgs, who was a Rector of St Philip's Church (now Birmingham Cathedral). The buildings on the site today are on St Philip's Place and are offices.

In 1930 the school moved to a site on Metchley Lane and Somerset Road in Edgbaston. The new buildings were designed by Henry Walter Simister. Although some elements of the original buildings were moved to the Edgbaston site.

The schools original purpose was to educate children aged 9 to 14 from poor backgrounds. In the early years, 32 boys and 20 girls for educated, clothed and fed there.

The school was rebuilt several times during the 18th century. Mainly between 1792 and 1794. As a four storey neo-Classical building.

In 1930 the new school was planned to be built in Edgbaston, built on what was the site of Harborne Hill House. Statues of a boy and girl in uniform dating to the 1770s were moved to the new school, but placed inside. Copies were made in 1930 and placed in the main entrance porch.

Historical information above taken from The Blue Coat School - History.

 

The Blue Coat School, Colmore Row, Birmingham, watercolour painting by James Billingsley. Topographical view of Birmingham, from the Birmingham Museums Trust collection.

Engraving of the Blue Coat School, Birmingham. One of a collection of engravings of local views contained in volume: Wilkinson Collection, Vol.ii.

Etching - Entrance to the Blue Coat School, Birmingham by F. Gould. Topographical view of Birmingham, from the Birmingham Museums Trust collection.

Public Domain Dedication images free to download from the Birmingham Museums Trust Digital Image Resource.

 

In February 2010, I got photos of the current building from Cathedral Square (or St Philip's Churchyard as I used to call it myself). This was the then home of the the Government Office for the West Midlands at 5 St Philip's Place. This was built in 1935-37 and was the former Prudential Assurance building. Built for the Prudential Assurance Architects' Department. The original architect was P B Chatwin. Built in the Beaux Arts classicism style in Portland stone. Additions by Temple Cox Nicholls from 2002. Information taken from Pevsner Architectural Guides: Birmingham by Andy Foster.

There is an old blue plaque at 5 St Philip's Place about the Blue Coat School. It stood on this site of this building from 1724 to 1930. Since removed to Edgbaston.

Next door was Hays Recruitment at 4 St Philips Place. This was probably Provost's House. Built with a Cotswold stone front. It replaced a Rectory of 1885 by Osborn & Reading. The rest of the building was by Caroe & Partners in 1950. Rebuilt behind by Temple Cox Nicholls from 1981-82. There is a NatWest bank to the right at Temple Row.

Got this photo in December 2010 so I knew what was in 5 St Philip's Place, which at the time was the Government Office for the West Midlands. But the Coalition Government came in May 2010, so this wouldn't last much longer.

By April 2011 the Government Office for the West Midlands had moved out of 5 St Philip's Place.

The plaque had been removed by this point. Today this building is occupied by Communities and Local Government.

 

Time to head over to the Edgbaston / Harborne border.

In May 2018 there was a bus diversion, as Harborne Park Road in Edgbaston was closed, and I took this view of the Blue Coat School from the no 23 bus. One advantage of this site was a playing field for sport, which the old site probably didn't have (unless pupils played sport in what is now Cathedral Square?).

The walk up Metchley Lane and Somerset Road past the Blue Coat School. Starting with the School Chapel. It was dated 1932.

Above the door as seen from Metchley Lane ws this stone in Latin.

AD MAJOREM DEI GLORIAM MCMXXXII ~ THE GLORY OF THE MAJOREM 1932

Above the chapel is this bell tower with cross at the top.

This was probably the Gatehouse, on Somerset Road.

Onto the main school building built in 1930. Near Somerset Road.

Above the middle part of the Blue Coat School was this clock tower and weather vane. Stone dates the school: AD MCMXXX ~ AD 1930.

The weather vane on the clock tower has a cockerel sculpture on top.

Flag of the Blue Coat School flapping in the wind.

Pedestrian Entrance to The Blue Coat School at this gate from Somerset Road. The sign also has the schools badge. It reads: The Blue Coat School Birmingham 1722 * Grow in Grace.

Modern 21st Century photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Thanks to all my followers.

Share  Connect with us
70 passion points
Environment & green action
26 May 2020 - Elliott Brown
Inspiration

From the Birmingham Nature Centre to the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park

Located on the Pershore Road in Edgbaston near Cannon Hill Park is the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park. This was a rebrand from the former Birmingham Nature Centre in 2014. A name it had since about 1974. Before that it was Birmingham Zoo from 1964 until it closed in 1973. The building used to be the Birmingham Natural History Museum from 1953, until the zoo opened a decade later.

Related View community

From the Birmingham Nature Centre to the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park





Located on the Pershore Road in Edgbaston near Cannon Hill Park is the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park. This was a rebrand from the former Birmingham Nature Centre in 2014. A name it had since about 1974. Before that it was Birmingham Zoo from 1964 until it closed in 1973. The building used to be the Birmingham Natural History Museum from 1953, until the zoo opened a decade later.


Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park

On the Pershore Road in Edgbaston, is part of Cannon Hill Park that has either been a natural history museum or a zoo. What is now called the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park has had many different names in the past.

The Birmingham Natural History Museum opened in what is now the entrance building (ticket office and shop) in 1953. This was established by the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery whose natural history department established a museum on the site. But it didn't last too long. In 1964 the building and the land nearby was turned into the Birmingham Zoo by the Dudley Zoological Society. The zoo suddenly closed in 1973. Only for Birmingham City Council to reopen it as the Birmingham Nature Centre in 1974. It kept this name for 40 years until it was rebranded as the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park in 2014. Which it is still called today.

Some of the information above taken from Birmingham Nature Centre - mapping museums.

The building itself dates back to the 1920s or 1930s when it was originally built as the Birmingham Branch Art Gallery and Museum, at Cannon Hill Park. The building was designed by A Edgerton Leeson. It must have still been open until the early 1950s, when the Natural History Museum replaced it.

It was built on the site of Pebble Mill Farm. Before the farm this was the site of Pebble Mill, which was once a fulling mill. It was a water powered mill that existed from the 16th century. It gave it's name to the Pebble Mill land where the BBC used to be (now developed with new hospitals and a care home). The mill became a blade mill in the 17th century. It was converted to grinding corn in 1842. A dairy farm opened in 1890, with cow fields near the River Rea. The Bourn Brook was diverted at the beginning of the 20th century. The farm was demolished in 1921.

Information above taken from A Brummie's Guide to Birmingham on the Nature Centre.

 

I first took photos of the Birmingham Nature Centre building during the snow of December 2010, from the Pershore Road in Edgbaston.

At the time the Nature Centre might have been closed, although the doors were open.

It still had a sign above the door saying Museum. Probably dating from it's time as a Natural History Museum or before that as an Art Gallery and Museum.

Some close up details of the inter war years museum building, which is now the entrance to what was then the Nature Centre.

There is a set of doric columns at the entrance to the Nature Centre (formerly a museum).

Also a ramp with railings to help people with wheelchairs or pushchairs, or hard of walking get in.

An earlier view of the Nature Centre with a Christmas Tree out front.

A Nature Centre sign / sculpture with all the months of the years.

It also had animals in it's design. The name in the middle has since been covered over with a Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park sign (from 2014 onwards).

The back of the museum building. There is a door here, but it was not open. I would think that there would be a door to the side into the then Nature Centre.

The Queens Ride leads from Cannon Hill Park to the Nature Centre. With the Boy Scouts War Memorial on the left. The fence to the left runs along the site of the Nature Centre. For more on the war memorials of Cannon Hill Park, go to this post: Memorials in Cannon Hill Park . Tyre tracks in the snow from cyclists heading to and from the Pershore Road and the park.

After a look at the entrance building to the Nature Centre, I headed into Cannon Hill Park for a look around the park while it was covered in snow. In the years since, I never got around to paying for a visit around the Nature Centre, but have been back around this area outside many times over the years.

 

In July 2013, I only really got photos of these colourful flower beds outside of the Nature Centre. This one pointing towards Pershore Road and over to Pebble Mill Road (to the far left of here).

This colourful flower bed pointing in the direction of the railings of the Nature Centre with those printed photos of animals.

A pair of flower pots surrounded by logs. On the drive in front of the Nature Centre. The Pershore Road to Selly Park to the left.

Another set of flower pots surrounded by logs close to the roadside. The Pershore Road into Edgbaston and the City Centre to the right of here.

From the Pershore Road, I got this photo through the railings of these emu's (or ostriches). It would be nice one day after lockdown ends, to pay for a visit, or go with a group of other photographers. Anyone up for it when things go back to normal?

Well overgrown as I saw this view of a bridge that crosses the Bourn Brook. It joins up to the River Rea beyond the Nature Centre.

Got some new photos of the Birmingham Nature in August 2014 when it had by this point been renamed to the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park. Admission Charges to the left and Opening Times to the right. (To date I still haven't paid for a visit around the park).

All of these new signs went up outside in the car park for the re-named Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park.

These signs for the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park points the direction to the car park & main entrance. At the time someone had put put a poster about a Missing Dog. I hope they found their dog at the time (6 years ago now).

But have different photos of animals on them. Probably to get young children excited about their visit.

Another one for the Entrance to the Car Park. The gate closes at dusk.

My only night time photo was from January 2018, as I got off the bus early on the Pershore Road and took this Christmas Tree, while their was Christmas fairy lights on the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Centre. This was just after 5pm in the evening, before a walk up the Pershore Road.

Another view of the bridge over the Bourn Brook from the bridge on the Pershore Road during April 2018. For many years there was flood defence works on this side and on the Pebble Mill side which took years to complete. And one of the paths into Cannon Hill Park, only just reopened.

During the summer drought in July 2018, grass lawns all over the City had gone from the normal green to a yellow colour. Here the flower beds were looking quite pink at the time. The car park to the park is in the distance to the right. The Pershore Road to the left.

The other pink flower bed closest to the railings of the Wildlife Conservation Park. By now they had loads of large printed photos of animals for visitors to see before going into the park. The grass was so dry at the time.

Finally in January 2019, I saw this Land Rover Defender parked outside of the entrance of the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park. It was from the Park Ranger Service. Could see it from Pebble Mill Road before I walked onto the Pershore Road.

Maybe one day when things are back to normal, someone could organise a group photo visit around the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park. Maybe someone at Birmingham We Are, or one of those Facebook groups such as Brumtography. I have no childhood memories of going to the Birmingham Nature when I was little. Could have gone in the 1980s and I remember nothing about it.

But in recent years, I been to London Zoo with my then camera (in 2010) and even went to a Zoo in Lyon, France (2017). I've seen the birds in cages at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens. Did go to the Birmingham Sealife Centre a couple of times after it opened in the mid 1990s, but didn't have a camera at the time. And only have exterior views from the late 2000s and into the 2010s.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Thanks for all the followers.

Share  Connect with us
60 passion points
Construction & regeneration
24 May 2020 - Daniel Sturley
Gallery

Birmingham, Cranes Across the City - May Update

Sometimes it's just easier to put the crane on the top of the concrete core, here one atop 103 Colmore Row, see more if this and many other crane photos in this update covering April and May 2020.

Related View community

Birmingham, Cranes Across the City - May Update





Sometimes it's just easier to put the crane on the top of the concrete core, here one atop 103 Colmore Row, see more if this and many other crane photos in this update covering April and May 2020.


Photos by Daniel Sturley

Share  Connect with us
60 passion points
History & heritage
22 May 2020 - Elliott Brown
Inspiration

The Staffordshire Hoard Gallery at the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery

The Staffordshire Hoard was discovered in a field in Staffordshire in 2009 by a metal detector. It is the largest hoard of Anglo-Saxon gold and silver metalwork to be found. Likely to have been buried in the 7th century, with pieces made in the 6th and 7th centuries. The hoard was purchased by Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery and Potteries Museum & Art Gallery (Stoke-on-Trent).

Related View community

The Staffordshire Hoard Gallery at the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery





The Staffordshire Hoard was discovered in a field in Staffordshire in 2009 by a metal detector. It is the largest hoard of Anglo-Saxon gold and silver metalwork to be found. Likely to have been buried in the 7th century, with pieces made in the 6th and 7th centuries. The hoard was purchased by Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery and Potteries Museum & Art Gallery (Stoke-on-Trent).


Staffordshire Hoard

In July 2009, Terry Herbert using a metal detector, while searching the area, discovered a hoard of Gold artefacts. Over 5 days he discovered over 244 items. He then contacted the authorities. The landowner Fred Johnson gave permission for excavations to take place on his land to find more.

The first Staffordshire Hoard Gallery opened up at the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery in 2009. When it first opened, there was long queues outside of BM & AG going around Chamberlain Square. The first excavation took place at the field on farmland near Hammerwich, Staffordshire in September 2009 by the Birmingham Archaeology and funded by English Heritage. The gallery at BM & AG opened in October 2009 attracting 40,000 people.

The hoard was first displayed at BM & AG from September to October 2009. Parts of it went on display at other galleries including the British Museum (November 2009 to April 2010).  But items were still being displayed in a temporary gallery at BM & AG until they opened permenant gallery from October 2014 onwards.

2012

I was only able to get two photos of the original Staffordshire Hoard Gallery in November 2012. At the time photos in the gallery were not allowed so only got this cardboard cut out of an Anglo-Saxon warrior.

Also of this replica Anglo-Saxon warriors helmet. But was told you couldn't take photos in there, so I moved on. Not that I wanted to take the individual items in there at the time.

2014

A new Staffordshire Hoard Gallery opened in October 2014, in the gallery that formerly housed the Ancient Greek and Roman collection (below the Ancient Egypt gallery).

Sign on Great Charles Street Queensway advertising the new gallery.

Unearth the story of the Staffordshire Hoard

Heading inside BM & AG, I saw another sign pointing the way to the new Staffordshire Hoard Gallery.

This one welcoming you to the Staffordshire Hoard Gallery.

Also this one on the wall saying that the Staffordshire Hoard Gallery was on Level 2.

Another sign telling you that you can get a lift to the Staffordshire Hoard Gallery, which is on Level 2.

I got the rest of the views of the new Staffordshire Hoard Gallery from the Ancient Egypt gallery above. Surrounding the balcony of the gallery is the Frieze of the Mausoleum (it was there long before the Staffordshire Hoard moved in here).

In the middle was this tall red object, probably representing an Ancient Anglo-Saxon item.

Close up view of that red rectangle sculpture with gold detailing.

Questions:

Why did they bury it? Who buried the hoard? When did they bury it? Why did they bury it there?

In this area was Sources and techniques.

The top of another sectioned off area with pieces of the hoard.

Below you can see visitors having a close up look at the Staffordshire Hoard.

2018

In November 2018, a Staffordshire Hoard golden helmet replica was unveiled at BM & AG in the Staffordshire Hoard Gallery. I took this photo in zoom in while BBC Midlands Today was making a piece about it, so didn't stick about for long. The original pieces were too fragile to reassemble into a helmet, so two replicas were made (the other one is at the Potteries Museum in Stoke-on-Trent). It's the kind of thing that the King of Mercia could have worn before the Kingdom of Mercia was conquered. And they could have been hurriedly broken up into pieces and buried, where they remained until they were found in 2009!

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Thanks to all my followers.

Share  Connect with us
50 passion points

Top Contributors

Elliott Brown
PhotographyWeAre points: 11K
Combined FreeTimePays points: 61K
Daniel Sturley
PhotographyWeAre points: 7381
Combined FreeTimePays points: 51K
FreeTimePays
PhotographyWeAre points: 2515
Combined FreeTimePays points: 22K
Karl Newton
PhotographyWeAre points: 1520
Combined FreeTimePays points: 2910
Christine Wright
PhotographyWeAre points: 245
Combined FreeTimePays points: 2100

Show more