LGBTQI+ guide to Birmingham
The UK’s second city, Birmingham is also one of its most exciting. Its LGBTQI+ scene is thriving, with its famous gay club nights and Birmingham Pride - the UK’s largest two-day LGBTQI+ festival. Explore our guide to LGBTQI+ Birmingham for the rundown of the best neighbourhoods, hotels and events in the city.
Dates for the diary
Championing queer arts and culture, SHOUT produce a number of annual events to showcase LGBTQ+ film, visual art, music, theatre and literature. Annual events include the SHOUT Film Festival, but look out for other events via their website.
Birmingham Pride, September
The UK’s largest two-day LGBTQI+ festival, Birmingham Pride. The streets of Birmingham’s Gay Village pulsate with a carnival parade, live music, cabaret stage, women’s arena and a community village.
Get to know Birmingham
Birmingham is renowned for its shopping. The Bullring, in the heart of the city, was the UK’s first indoor city-centre shopping complex when it opened in the 1960s. Completely rebuilt in 2000, the shimmering The Bullring & Grand Central is one of Britain’s biggest shopping malls. With more than 200 retailers and more than 460 restaurants and cafés, there’s plenty for discerning shoppers.
Just north of the city centre, the Jewellery Quarter has Europe’s largest concentration of jewellery traders, producing 40% of all jewellery made in the UK – making this an ideal place for anyone planning a romantic gesture on their trip (wink wink).
A little-known fact, Birmingham has more miles of canals than Venice - just over 35 miles compared to Venice’s 26 miles. The life-blood of Victorian Birmingham, today these canals and towpaths provide a fascinating route for walkers and joggers. The bustling hub of the canal network, Gas Street Basin, has colourful narrowboats and busy cafés, restaurants and bars in set in revamped warehouses under a mile from the Gay Village.
Out and about
Birmingham is situated in the Midlands, 120 miles northwest of London. Regular trains connect Birmingham to London in one-and-a-half hours. Birmingham Airport is 10 minutes by train from the city centre and is served by flights from Europe, the Middle East, India, Pakistan, North America and the Caribbean.