Popular
Points
14K
ArchitectureAndUs – A FreeTimePays community

Great architecture shared with community

Architecture and Us is all about sharing and promoting great architecture and providing a shared digital space where people can make a difference and have a positive social impact.

Launch date: June 2019
Combined FreeTimePays following: 101K


Community sponsors:

Construction & regeneration
16 Apr 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

The Cube from the last year of construction in 2009 till it was completed in 2010

I only started taking photos around Birmingham in 2009, so didn't get my first close up photos of The Cube until the summer of 2009. On and off I got the odd photo update. Then in 2010 when it was getting close to completion I took more photos of it. The Lovely People statues were installed by the end of 2010. This year The Cube is getting close to it's 10th anniversary.

Related View community

The Cube from the last year of construction in 2009 till it was completed in 2010





I only started taking photos around Birmingham in 2009, so didn't get my first close up photos of The Cube until the summer of 2009. On and off I got the odd photo update. Then in 2010 when it was getting close to completion I took more photos of it. The Lovely People statues were installed by the end of 2010. This year The Cube is getting close to it's 10th anniversary.


The Cube

The Cube was built between 2007 and 2010. The architect was Ken Shuttleworth of Make Architects. It should have been completed by 2008 but got delayed until 2010. Located near The Mailbox alongside the Worcester & Birmingham Canal on Commercial Street and near Washington Wharf.

 

2009

Indirect views of the construction of The Cube taken during April 2009 from Gas Street Basin. These are crops of the original photos. So you have the bridge near the Tap & Spile.

The narrowboats at Worcester Bar, and the buildings behind were derelict.

Views from June 2009. From the Worcester & Birmingham Canal towards the Salvage Turn Bridge.

Towards The Mailbox.

From The Mailbox.

The view from Brindleyplace along Oozells Street from Oozells Square (beyond Broad Street and down Berkley Street).

In October 2009 from Digbeth, The Cube on the Skyline behind The Sentinels, and to the left of the Beetham Tower and Centre City Tower. The Custard Factory (Devonshire House) is to the right.

December 2009 at The Mailbox (I was there for a work Christmas Party). Nightshots. Cladding of The Cube almost done apart from the Crown.

Views of The Cube down Bridge Street. Cladding on the side facing Premier Inn was not quite done.

Buildings on the left on the Arena Central site would not be demolished until 2015. Was an old hospital (I think).

2010

Heading to February 2010, this view was between Baskerville House and the site of the Library of Birmingham. Cladding around The Cube looked done, but the Crown still hadn't had glass panels installed. The old Municipal Bank below.

From Cambridge Street past the Library of Birmingham site. This end of The REP was going to be demolished before the library was built. Could see The Cube to the left. If you stand here today, you will not be able to See The Cube (unless you go up to the Discovery Terrace or Secret Garden).

A few more views of The Cube from Bridge Street with a Victorian style lamppost. Looks like a gas lit one (but probably has light bulbs).

May 2010 and they had finally put up the glass panels on the Crown of The Cube. Views from The Mailbox.

The Highways Agency would become one of the first tenants at The Cube.

This view over the future Arena Central site behind Centenary Plaza. This was a view from Centenary Square near the Hall of Memory.

June 2010 and my first views of The Cube now more or less complete from Highgate Park and on the skyline with The Sentinels and Beetham Tower.

Views from Bristol Street. Buildings that were on Holloway Head. So not far from Holloway Circus.

July 2010 and some more views of The Cube from The Mailbox.

The Cube from Gas Street Basin, now complete.

December 2010 and my first interior photos of The Cube. Mainly to see the Lovely People statues.

The Lovely People by Temper.

Urban

Positioned as though welcoming guests to The Cube, ‘Urban’ represents the difficulties of facing of adversity, as well as the triumphs of overcoming these to create a better life.
Inspiration: Lee Fortnam, who faced troubles throughout his early life, but with the help of The Prince’s Trust went on to begin a successful career as a Corgi registered gas and plumbing engineer – later becoming an ambassador for the charity.

Mother & Child

The only pair of figures within the collection, ‘Mother and Child’ can be found on Level 7, sharing the unparalleled bond between a mother and her children.
Inspiration: Ellie-Mae, who was born in with a hole in her heart, and Rachel, who had no choice but to leave her daughter in the capable hands of the staff at Birmingham Children’s Hospital.

Uplifted

Suspended high within the atrium, ‘Uplifted’ tells the story of bravery and self-sacrifice of those who help people in need. The sculpture was designed to show a person holding on to the balloon preparing for life’s ride.
Inspiration: Firefighter Dave Burns of the West Midlands Fire Service who, in 1992, entered a 20-storey building to rescue two colleagues from a floor engulfed in flames. Burns was later awarded the George Medal by Queen Elizabeth II.

Working Man

Found on Level 5, ‘The Working Man’ is sat on a bench reading a newspaper, representative of people who work to provide for their family and put a roof over their head.
Inspiration: Birmingham-born Barry O’Neil who turned the notion of ‘nine-to-five’ into something much more heroic. Having worked for some of the West Midlands greatest manufacturers, including JCB and MG Rover, O’Neil proved there is no pursuit more honest or dignified.

Persuit

Tucked within the office spaces on Level 8 you’ll find ‘Pursuit’, representing Birmingham’s entrepreneurial heritage and the legacy it holds to this day.
Inspiration: Paul Bassi, businessman and first Asian president of the Chamber of Commerce, recognised for his contribution to business and the economy, as well as his selflessness.

Survivor

An addition to Level 6, ‘Survivor’ reflects the perseverance and bravery of people when faced with times of crisis.
Inspiration: Holocaust survivor, Gerda Cavangh, who escaped Vienna, trekked across Europe and arrived in England as a stowaway. Born into a Jewish family in Austria, Cavangh’s mother encouraged her to flee the country. Once in England, she worked as a medical orderly in the Auxiliary Territorial Services, receiving two service medals for her work.

I've taken more views of The Cube since then from 2011 until earlier in 2020 on and off, but will leave those photos for another post maybe.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Now at 1,110 followers. Thank you.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

Share  Connect with us
60 passion points
Squares and public spaces
15 Apr 2020 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

The only complete Georgian Square left in Birmingham is at St Paul's Square

A look at the buildings around St Paul's Square in the Jewellery Quarter. Many of them dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries. It is the last Georgian Square left in the City of Birmingham. The square was built from 1777-79, and many of the buildings around the square went up after 1780 and are Grade II listed. It was part of the Newhall estate of the Colmore family.

Related View community

The only complete Georgian Square left in Birmingham is at St Paul's Square





A look at the buildings around St Paul's Square in the Jewellery Quarter. Many of them dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries. It is the last Georgian Square left in the City of Birmingham. The square was built from 1777-79, and many of the buildings around the square went up after 1780 and are Grade II listed. It was part of the Newhall estate of the Colmore family.


St Paul's Square

St Paul's Square is more than just St Paul's Church. The square surrounding it has these old Georgian houses, some also dating to the Victorian period that are now offices, restaurants and cafes. The roads leading to St Paul's Square include Charlotte Street, Mary Ann Street, Brook Street and Cox Street (between Newhall Street and Livery Street). Ludgate Hill goes to the south east from Great Charles Street Queensway, while Caroline Street goes to the north west further into the Jewellery Quarter (turning into Hall Street to Great Hampton Street). Many of these road names were named after members of the Colmore family.

 

2009

My first full look around St Paul's Square was during November 2009. So was a lot of To Let signs at the time. Starting at Ludgate Hill going around the square in an anti-clockwise direction (although not necessarily the order that I saw them in).

1 St Paul's Square

At the corner of St Paul's Square and Ludgate Hill is this town house at no 1 St Paul's Square. This building dates to 1780 and is a Grade II listed building. Also at 28D and 28E Ludgate Hill.  It's a three storey red brick town house on the corner with Ludgate Hill. The Jam House is to the left at nos 3-5. You can see the Manangel on the wall of no 1 above the doorway with Doric Columns.

The Manangel by David Begbie is at 1 St Paul's Square, next door to the right to the Jam House. Sometime in 2016 it went missing, but was back by 2017 (see a later photo further down this post).

The Jam House - 3-5 St Paul's Square

There is three town houses here dating to 1780 all are Grade II listed buildings. The Jam House seen at 3 St Paul's Square.  Formerly three storeys built of red brick. The upper floors were removed after fire damage. 4 St Paul's Square and 5 St Paul's Square are to the left but are not pictured here. The Jam House has big-name jazz, blues and rock acts in an intimate 3 storey Georgian building with a top floor restaurant.

Grosvenor House - 11 St Paul's Square

Seen from Mary Ann Street, this building is now home to Anderson's Bar and Grill. A Grade II listed building. Built in 1780 as a five bay red brick three storey town house. Classical dressings dated to 1880-90. Some of the windows had been bricked up.

The view of 11 St Paul's Square taken from St Paul's Square. It is also called Grosvenor House.

12, 13 and 14 St Paul's Square

Three town houses also dating to 1780 and Grade II listed buildings. Built of red brick up to three storeys. These houses are the least altered in the square. Leading up to Saint Paul's House to the far left.

St Paul's House - 15-20 St Paul's Square

This view of St Paul's House to the corner with Cox Street. It is not listed. Located at 15-20 St Paul's Square. It is now a hotel. I did not get a view of The Rope Walk (to the right) until early 2013. The pub was in the red brick building at the time.

30 St Paul's Square

This is an office block built in 1993 which also contains a building from the late Victorian period and Inter war period. Including three buildings. Pevsner mentions a swagger factory by Marcus O. Type dating to 1936 built in the Arts and Crafts style (left). A later 19th century building with three storeys and terracotta insertions and a six storey block by Associated Architects built in 1993 (right).

This would be the former swagger factory of 1936 at 30 St Paul's Square that is mentioned in my Pevsner book on Birmingham. It has giant arches big end pediments and a rusticated ground floor but rather Arts and Crafts brick details.

Saint Paul's Club - 34 St Paul's Square

At the corner of Caroline Street and St Paul's Square is Saint Paul's Club. A Grade II listed building built circa 1780. A block or two of at least two town houses. The building is completely stuccoed. Has a short section of 18th century railings outside the door with Doric Columns. This was altered in the 1930s.

35 - 38 St Paul's Square

These buildings are at the other corner with Caroline Street. Dating to 1780 like many of the other buildings in the square, they are a Grade II listed building. A row of town houses. No 35 at the corner of Caroline Street is built of red brick with three storeys, with stuccoed doorways. Evidence of some windows bricked up on Caroline Street. Nos 36-37 appears to have been a one 5-bay house, the other 3-bays. No 38 has large mid-19th century panelled pilaster doorway.

This is the view from St Paul's Square of no 35. The section of the town house to the left is painted red. Also has a doorway with Doric Columns.

This view from St Paul's Square of nos 36-38. Both doorways have a pair of Doric Columns. This building is completed stuccoed from the outside.

To the corner of St Paul's Square with Brook Street. The trees had mostly shed their leaves. Nos 35-38 were to the right. While Matthew Linwood House at no 42a was to the left. The big building straight ahead is St Paul's Place at 40 St Paul's Square. In 2009 and 2010 it was a development of Chord. Flats and apartments were to let at the time. It was the Insider Magazine Residential Developer of the Year 2010. It has 1 & 2 bed studio apartments. The building to the south west had scaffolding on it at the time. This is at 42 to 54 St Paul's Square.

Matthew Linwood House - 42a St Paul's Square and 15 Brook Street

This was taken around 2 weeks after my other November 2009 photos on Brook Street. I was getting photos of Pasta Di Piazza Restaurant at 11 Brook Street to the right and the RBSA Gallery at 4 Brook Street (both off St Paul's Square but not on it) at the time. I don't think I ever got a view of 15 Brook Street from the St Paul's Square side. A Grade II Listed Building. Dates to 1880, so built 100 years after the original Georgian town houses around the square.  A tall building of four storeys, built of bright red brick with engineering bricks and stucco detailing. Has a modern "Georgian" doorway inserted facing the square.

55 St Paul's Square, including 61 Charlotte Street

This building is at the corner of Charlotte Street. Dating to 1780 it is a Grade II listed building. It was originally built as two town houses, but was altered to be one premises. Built of red brick up to three storeys. Has a hipped roof from the early 20th century. St Paul's Dental is next door at the Cogent Works which is also a Grade II listed building. But dates to 1902. It was converted to commercial use in 1989.

This view from Charlotte Street. Is a big sign for Pearson Row Solicitors. There is a plaque here about the John Betts Building. The Betts family moved to Birmingham from Sheffield in 1760. John Betts bought this building in 1970 from another old company, Sheffield Smelting and the name "John Betts & Sons Ltd" was put up on the wall facing Charlotte Street. The Betts name is still associated with metal sales in the Jewellery Quarter, though not from this address.

The Old Chapel - 57 St Paul's Square

This building dates from approximately 1851 and was historically used as a charging station. The building has never been listed. The BT Tower is seen behind on Lionel Street.

Fleurets - 63 St Pauls Square

At the corner of Ludgate Hill and St Paul's Square is this building. Offices that was formerly a bank dating to the late 19th century. A Grade II listed building. Made of smooth red brick with painted dressings and a slated roof. Three storeys high with a turreted style corner. The door dates to the late 20th century and is a six panel door.

2013

This was on New Years Day in January 2013 when I got a few more photos of the Georgian buildings in St Paul's Square. Although most of the time in the years since, I don't get much of the buildings, due to my earlier photos from 2009.

The Rope Walk - 15-20 St Paul's Square

This was a restaurant called The Rope Walk, it was there until at least 2015. Before it became a hotel called Saint Paul's House from 2016 onwards. The building is not listed.

Close up, it looks like the late 18th century style with Doric Columns, but am not sure if it also dates to 1780 or later.

13 St Paul's Square

This visit to St Paul's Square was to mainly see the blue plaque for Samuel Malkin. Who was a bucklemaker to George III. He lived here from 1786-1798. This house is also called Premier House. Details above but it dates to 1780.

14 St Paul's Square

I also at the time got a view of this house. Between nos 13 and 14 is The Mews through a gate to no 13A. This house dates to 1780, details further up for 12, 13 and 14 St Paul's Square.

2017-19

1-5 St Paul's Square

I originally took this photo using Twitter on my then phone camera, as the Manangel went missing sometime during 2016. But by January 2017 it was back. So my only full view of The Jam House and the Music Works was in this low resolution view, probably sitting on a bench outside of St Paul's Church. Details about no 1 and nos 3 to 5 further up this post. You can see Ludgate Hill to the right.

35-38 St Paul's Square

This view from an autumnal St Paul's Square during October 2017, towards nos 35-38. Trees were shedding their leaves. Matthew Linwood House is beyond the modern building to the left at 15 Brook Street.

This view of 35-38 St Paul's Square during the snow of December 2017. At the time the building was for sale which included the few remaining units.

This autumnal view towards Matthew Linwood House and up to 35-38 St Paul's Square during November 2018. As usual St Paul's Square looked very picturesque with the leaves on the ground and the tree shedding their leaves.

Saint Paul's House - 15-20 St Paul's Square

This used to be a pub / restaurant called The Rope Walk (until it closed in 2015). In 2016 under new ownership and it was now a hotel called Saint Paul's House. In November 2019 the Christmas decorations were up around the Doric Columns.

The Old Chapel

The view from Charlotte Street near St Paul's Square. Taken near 55 St Paul's Square / 61 Charlotte Street as I saw this group of cyclists riding their bikes around St Paul's Square. They went past The Old Chapel before turning to the left. Was here in December 2019 to see the new Peaky Blinders statue. Might put that in another post. 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Now at 1,100 followers. Thank you.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

Share  Connect with us
60 passion points
History & heritage
09 Mar 2020 - Elliott Brown
Inspiration

Moseley Road Baths: an Edwardian gem in Balsall Heath

The Brumtography Facebook group had a guided tour and photo meet at the Moseley Road Baths in Balsall Heath on Sunday 8th March 2020. Thanks to Karl Newton for organising. We each gave a £2 donation at the end. It's been more than a quarter of a century since I last swam there with school, and many things have changed. Parts have been restored, but still a lot to do.

Related View community

Moseley Road Baths: an Edwardian gem in Balsall Heath





The Brumtography Facebook group had a guided tour and photo meet at the Moseley Road Baths in Balsall Heath on Sunday 8th March 2020. Thanks to Karl Newton for organising. We each gave a £2 donation at the end. It's been more than a quarter of a century since I last swam there with school, and many things have changed. Parts have been restored, but still a lot to do.


A guided tour around Moseley Road Baths with the Brumtography Facebook group members. Thanks once again to Karl Newton for organising it. I was last inside here before, probably in the early to mid 1990s with my Primary School for swimming classes, which was more than a quarter of a century ago. So it's been a long time since I've been here, other than passing it on the Moseley Road on the no 50 bus in Balsall Heath.

Some history from Wikipedia (link above).

Balsall Heath Library opened in 1895, and the baths followed in 1907. Built of red brick and terracotta in the Edwardian style. Jethro A. Cossins and F. B. Peacock was the architect of the library, while William Hale and Son were architects of the baths. The baths and library has several Birmingham Forward coat of arms, as it was built as an incentive for Balsall Heath to become a part of Birmingham (which happened in 1891).

Before people had their own bathroom at home, they would come here for a bath. There was a Ladies bath room, also a Mens First Class and Second Class bath room. There is also two pools. The building is Grade II* listed Balsall Heath Library and Balsall Heath Public Baths.

The Friends of Moseley Road Baths group was formed in 2006. Over the years there has been scaffolding in the baths. At the moment only one of the swimming baths has water in it (the smaller bath). The larger one has scaffolding around it, and a new temporary exhibition in the pool (no water).

 

Some exteriors I took as I arrived in Balsall Heath. Crossed to the other side of the Moseley Road as I got there early. The Public Library is on the right with the clock tower.

From the left side with the chimney at the back. The doors for the old Men's Bath Second Class and Women's Baths have long since been closed (for a very long time). The main entrance is via the door labelled Men's Baths First Class.

The main entrance foyer and what is now the reception desk. This used to be the entrance hall to the Men's Baths First Class. In the swimming baths with water, you have to put these blue bags over your outdoor shoes.

The Deep End. The baths currently in use are to the left. While the larger pool with the exhibition was ahead and to the right. Another door beyond led to the boiler room and the pump room.

Got this view of the foyer after leaving pool 1, and before we were taken upstairs to the laundry room. The door on the right leads to the women's baths, the door to the left to the main entrance and exit. The men's baths is to the far left of here.

Men's Baths

To the right of the main entrance hall was the former men's baths. There was separate rooms in here with bath tubs. The room is now used for storage.

At the far end was a window with the Birmingham Forward coat of arms. Some panels of glass were missing (years of wear and tare).

One of the baths with a rope (probably used to pull yourself out). As you can see, boxes, papers etc are now in there. Before people had their own plumbed bathrooms, they had to come to places like this.

Women's Baths

The women's baths was to the left of the main entrance. Saw this old door with a wall blocking it behind. It reads: "Notice: No money or tickets will be exchanged after leaving this window soap tablets 1d - each".

One of the bath rooms and bath tubs. No doors on some of them that I could see. A bench to sit on and a hook to hang your clothes up.

The corridor between the women's bath rooms, leading back out to the foyer. These are no longer used either.

Boiler Rooms

We were given access by our guide to the boiler rooms to the back of Moseley Road Baths. Was very warm in there. Pipes all over with red wheels to turn (not us of course).

Was another room with a big tank inside, we were taken outside to the back for some views of the chimney. Was a stream deep under the building which could be accessed from here.

In the main room was these large tanks full of steam, more pipes and tubes all over the place.

Pool 1

This swimming pool is still in use. This was the Second Class baths. Modern looking changing rooms on both sides. Now used for kids swimming lessons, and women's swimming group sessions.

You could smell the smell of clorine in here, and my camera got quite steamed up. They let us walk all the way around the pool, as long as we had the blue bags on our shoes. Was bright sunshine coming through as well.

Steps to climb down into the pool. A warning sign behind for No Diving. I did not see any diving boards in Moseley Road Baths. Probably isn't safe, or they never had one.

Laundry Room

We were next taken up some stairs to the old Laundry Room. The drying racks was on the left. The next set of steps leads up to the header tank in the roof. This room had some good views of the City Skyline through the windows on the right.

A close up look at the drying racks.

Up those wooden steps, then up a wooden ladder for a view in the roof. Below is the header tank. Just a look up here, wasn't going to climb on the plank.

Pool 2

This pool is not currently in use, and has scaffolding all around it with no water in the swimming pool. I suspect that this was the pool I used with my primary school back in the early 1990s. Boys shared cubicles on the left, while girls in the cubicles on the right. Going past them now, they look cramped, doors missing and not lights. A new temporary exhibition has opened up in this space called Specular Reflecular. A hand painted animation for Moseley Road Baths by Juneau Projects and members of the local community.

They let us through to the balcony on the top. But it was only safe to walk around the edges near the tiled walls. This pool would have been the First Class swimming baths.

This was as far as I and others could go on this side, as I looked down at the pool with the temporary exhibition below. They installed wooden steps, and behind the screen was emergency scaffolding steps from the pool.

Be sure to follow Moseley Road Baths on Twitter: Moseley Road Baths, on Facebook: Moseley Road Baths and on Instagram: Moseley Road Baths. Their website is at Moseley Road Baths.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Now at 1,100 followers. Thank you.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

Share  Connect with us
60 passion points
Squares and public spaces
28 Feb 2020 - Elliott Brown
Inspiration

Centenary Square lit up after dark with the Water Jet fountains

Heading back into town from The BCAG, got these views of Centenary Square around 7pm on Wednesday 26th February 2020. Been wanting to see the Water Jet fountains lit up after it got dark. Was very quiet in Centenary Square. Crossing over Library Tram Stop, as roadworks on Broad Street mean you can't walk down past Symphony Hall. Westside seemed quiet for this time of the evening.

Related View community

Centenary Square lit up after dark with the Water Jet fountains





Heading back into town from The BCAG, got these views of Centenary Square around 7pm on Wednesday 26th February 2020. Been wanting to see the Water Jet fountains lit up after it got dark. Was very quiet in Centenary Square. Crossing over Library Tram Stop, as roadworks on Broad Street mean you can't walk down past Symphony Hall. Westside seemed quiet for this time of the evening.


Heading out of Brindleyplace, and back onto Broad Street. I headed to Centenary Square sometime after 7pm, after leaving a Birmingham We Are arts event at The Birmingham Contemporary Art Gallery. Hoardings on Broad Street, means you have to cross over to the side near Regency Wharf and the Hyatt Regency Birmingham Hotel.

Crossing over Library Tram Stop.

The water jets in the Reflective Pool were lit up red at this point while the Library of Birmingham was blue.

The blue lights were making nice reflections here.

The water jets going up giving off an unique blue tint.

Between the Library of Birmingham and HSBC UK. Looks quite complete from here.

View to HSBC UK at 1 Centenary Square with the Municipal Bank and 3 Arena Central.

Tram 23 was heading into Library Tram Stop. Passing the Municipal Bank, future home of a University of Birmingham venue.

Tram 23 comes to a stop at Library Tram Stop. Making a nice reflection from this side.

View towards the Symphony Hall foyer and the Hyatt Regency Birmingham.

Further down as you have the tram on the left and the Library to the right.

Might as well get Baskerville House and the Hall of Memory again while I passed through.

Tram 23 passed the Alpha Tower and HSBC UK as I headed towards Centenary Way, Chamberlain Square and Victoria Square.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown. Now at 1,100 followers. Thank you.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

Share  Connect with us
60 passion points
Squares and public spaces
14 Feb 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Model of St Martin's Square at St Martin in the Bullring

I did not know that this model of St Martin's Square was inside of St Martin in the Bullring. After meeting King Charles I Return for the first time for coffee (Aka Daniel Williams) we headed into St Martin's Church for a quick look around. First thing I spotted was this model. I'd say it was made around 2000 for the Bullring that opened in 2003. Also shows Selfridges.

Related View community

Model of St Martin's Square at St Martin in the Bullring





I did not know that this model of St Martin's Square was inside of St Martin in the Bullring. After meeting King Charles I Return for the first time for coffee (Aka Daniel Williams) we headed into St Martin's Church for a quick look around. First thing I spotted was this model. I'd say it was made around 2000 for the Bullring that opened in 2003. Also shows Selfridges.


In this post, first we will look at the model that I found inside of St Martin in the Bullring. Then comparison photos I took around St Martin's Square between Spring 2009 and early 2011 (before it all changed for the Spiceal Street development).

 

This model is between the exit from St Martin in the Bullring Cafe on the corridor to an entrance inside of the Church of St Martin. Didn't know it was there. Not even from a previous photo I took of the corridor to the cafe. I met King Charles I Return (aka Daniel Williams) on Friday 7th February 2020 for coffee. After that we popped into the church for a quick look around.

This view from Digbeth towards St Martin's Church with Selfridges on the right with the East Mall. The West Mall is to the left. The square as it was from 2003 until the 2011 Spiceal Street development added several new restaurants.

It was in a glass dome, so bit hard to get views without reflections. Birds-eye view down on St Martin's Square. Used to be a stepped sitting area on the left. That is where Chaophraya Thai Restaurant is now. Hand Made Burger Co was later built to the left of Selfridges down the right hand side of the path down to the road.

The view between St Martin's Church and Selfridges towards the main entrance to the Bullring. You can see the statue of Nelson in the middle.

This is the view from the markets side of the Bullring. Which is close to where buses drop off passengers (buses do not pick up passengers from this stop).

Another view of the path into St Martin's Square. Those steps on the right is where Handmade Burger Co is now. Sadly the Birmingham based chain has closed down (including their Bullring and Brindleyplace restaurants).

 

Now to compare the model to the real St Martin's Square from 2009 to early 2011 (before the Spiceal Street development got underway).

From the spring of 2009 when I started taking photos of Birmingham, that included the Bullring area. Got this view of St Martin's Church from near the steps during May 2009. The Three Cubes fountains were still there on the left. Little did I know that this area would all change about 2 years later.

These views from Digbeth, look quite similar to the model. Taken in October 2009, on the first day that I ever took photos around Digbeth (and not the last). This view past the Bull Ring Tavern towards the crossing between St Martin's Church and Selfridges.

Digbeth ends here, then the Bullring starts on the other side of the lights. There is a really short section of road called St Martin's Lane between Moat Lane and Park Street. Usually the buses wait at the lights here.

This view from near the Bull Ring Open Markets on Moat Lane. There was bunting on the lampposts. A sign on the right pointed directions to Digbeth Temporary Coach Station, as National Express was having their old coach station rebuilt into Birmingham Coach Station (which opened at the end of 2009 by the then England Football Manager, Fabio Capello).

Some of my earliest photos of St Martin's Square from April 2009. This from the balcony not far from the statue of Horatio Nelson. This view towards Borders, the Three Cubes fountain sculpture and Gloria Jeans Coffee. Neither of those were on the model (the sculpture and coffee shop).

This view also from April 2009, looking up to the balcony with the statue of Nelson. The stepped seating area was on the left, next to that was the Three Cubes fountain sculpture. St Martin in the Bullring to the right (still there now of course).

On month on, now May 2009. The curved semi circle section of the West Mall above Borders, the Three Cubes fountain sculpture and Gloria Jeans Coffee.

At the time in May 2009, the stepped seating area was closed off. Perhaps for a deep clean. But they would be dug up 2 years later in 2011 for the Spiceal Street development. This view towards Selfridges.

Side view of Gloria Jean's Coffee. This cafe building would be open until the end of 2010 (and into January 2011). The metal panels were later recycled into the tree sculpture that is in St Martin's Square today.

Aware that the building occupied at the time by Gloria Jean's Coffee would be dismantled for the Spiceal Street development, I took these early evening shots around 5pm at the end of December 2010.

There was already some barriers around here, but people could still go up and down the steps. Oh and Forever 21 had opened up above Jamie's Italian by then (where Borders used to be until that closed down).

A few days later and a couple of days into the new year of 2011. So now January 2011 for some last daylight shots of this building before they took it down.

There was a planning application here from Birmingham City Council detailing the plans for what was going to happen at Spiceal Street.

I did not go in. I didn't really start to go to coffee shops until 2012, starting off with Costa Coffee. Before trying Caffe Nero and Starbucks in 2014. I also discovered Coffee#1 in 2015 in South Wales before they opened some stores in the West Midlands.

In August 2009 a view from the upper balcony near Selfridges towards Digbeth. At this point in time, I had yet to have a photo walk around Digbeth. I didn't start to do that until October 2009. The steps below on the left, were demolished in 2009, and this is where Handmade Burger Co was built. The model of St Martin's Square shows tables and chairs outside of Selfridges on the lower balcony. There used to be a Starbucks in Selfridges at this corner (that has now gone).

A nice sunny view heading into St Martin's Square during August 2009. I had changed camera's by this point.

This view of Selfridges from Digbeth during December 2009. They were selling (at the time) Real Christmas Trees at Selfridges. The steps were still there at the time (seen on the left).

St Martin's Square in late December 2010. Slightly blurry at about 5pm near the Christmas tree. This was a few months before the Spiceal Street development which took all of 2011 to complete adding several new restaurants, and new steps up to St Martin's Walk with a replacement water feature.

The Three Cubes fountain sculpture seen during April 2009. Behind them was the former stepped seating area. Borders Books used to have many of the units there, including a Starbucks Coffee. That later became Jamies Italian and Forever 21 (which at one point had a Costa Coffee). Sadly both have recently closed down. But there is a Starbucks in the West Mall just as you enter the doors.

As you can see by December 2010, Jamie's Italian had moved in. They would last until 2018 (going into administration and closing down). The cubes were removed in early 2011 when construction of the Spiceal Street development started.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

Share  Connect with us
60 passion points

Top Contributors

Daniel Sturley
ArchitectureAndUs points: 8580
Combined FreeTimePays points: 54K
Elliott Brown
ArchitectureAndUs points: 3315
Combined FreeTimePays points: 73K
FreeTimePays
ArchitectureAndUs points: 1542
Combined FreeTimePays points: 23K
Stephen Giles
ArchitectureAndUs points: 940
Combined FreeTimePays points: 15K
Karl Newton
ArchitectureAndUs points: 190
Combined FreeTimePays points: 2910

Show more