Second only to London in terms of population, Birmingham is the beating heart of England’s West Midlands. At the helm of the Industrial Revolution, its legacy as the world’s first manufacturing town is still evident today. With three universities and two university colleges, it is the largest center of higher education in the UK outside London. Birmingham's state schools are reputed for their excellent academic standard, and the city boasts a considerable selection of private schools. Shrugging off the ravages of WWII’s Birmingham Blitz, the city has seen the redevelopment of the Bullring Shopping Centre and the regeneration of former industrial areas such as Brindley place, The Mailbox and the International Convention Centre. Old streets, buildings and canals have been restored, making the city a much safer, cleaner and inspiring place to live. The city lives for the night, and is a vanguard of the UK’s club scene. A 24-hour bus service makes getting to and from its plethora of restaurants, pubs, bars and clubs a breeze. Those who prefer a more relaxed pace can take in an opera at Symphony Hall, an exhibition at Ikon gallery, a show at the New Alexandra Theater, or a film at the city’s 30-screen Star City cinema complex. Sports lovers will find no shortage of activities, from indoor climbing walls, leisure complexes to gyms. For families, kid-centric activities are in abundance, making weekends out in the city a real pleasure. Birmingham is rebuilding itself as a city that offers a modern and cosmopolitan lifestyle, and its accommodation does not disappoint. City center developments around the network of canals and in the traditional Jewellery Quarter provide a stylish residential option. Luxury residential developments can now be found in New Street and Hill Street, and more major developments are on the way. Families may opt for quieter, residential areas such as Edgbaston or Sutton Coldfield on the outskirts of the city. What is special or unique about your city? Birmingham is a large sprawling city made up of many different suburbs. Situated in the area of England known as the Midlands, it is surrounded by beautiful countryside. The area is also rich with history and packed with interesting places to visit and experience. "Brum", as the locals call it, is also a centre for culture, sports and entertainment. You will definitely find something to suit everyone in the family! What are a newcomer's first impressions of your city? At first glance, Birmingham appears to be an industrial city. But it has much to offer. This includes Canalside developments (the city has more canals than Venice) and heritage museums, as well as a fantastic nightlife! Birmingham is also home to the Birmingham Royal Ballet and Symphony Orchestra. What is the local language? English. How easily could I live in this city without knowing this language? It is recommended that newcomers learn at least conversational English. What are good things to remember in order to avoid offending the other residents of this city? "Brummies" have a great sense of humor. However, because there are a variety of nationalities, religions and beliefs represented in the city, it is best to always be courteous, polite and aware of the many different cultures you'll encounter. How might the local weather affect my daily life? England has unpredictable weather! Birmingham, in particular, receives a lot of rainfall and is cool from November to April. From May to October, the warm weather arrives and the city can experience some wonderful warm sunshine. Apart from infrequent gales and strong winds, the country does not suffer from extreme weather or natural disasters. Useful Links Birmingham Web Directory www.birminghamuk.com Birmingham City Council www.birmingham.gov.uk Visit Birmingham www.visitbirmingham.com IMPORTANT NOTE: Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Please contact your closest embassy or consulate for confirmation.