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Elliott Brown Squares and public spaces
16 Mar 2020 - Elliott Brown
Inspiration

From the Flame of Hope to the Countdown clock to the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games

On Commonwealth Day the countdown clock to the Commonwealth Games 2022 was unveiled in Birmingham's Centenary Square. I was unaware of it until I saw it on Twitter. So headed down to Centenary Square several days later. Here we will also look at the Flame of Hope which was near the Library of Birmingham site from 1999 to 2009.

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From the Flame of Hope to the Countdown clock to the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games





On Commonwealth Day the countdown clock to the Commonwealth Games 2022 was unveiled in Birmingham's Centenary Square. I was unaware of it until I saw it on Twitter. So headed down to Centenary Square several days later. Here we will also look at the Flame of Hope which was near the Library of Birmingham site from 1999 to 2009.


The Flame of Hope

Seen in Centenary Square during April 2009 was The Flame of Hope. This was the first day (at the time) that I took a camera around Birmingham and that included in Centenary Square. Behind was the site of the Library of Birmingham due to open in 2013. Also there at the time was the Spirit of Enterprise fountain. Both went into storage before construction of the Library began, where they remain to this day.

dndimg alt="Flame of Hope" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Flame of Hope Centenary Square (April 2009) (1).JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

In this cropped view of the Flame of Hope towards Baskerville House. By this point the flame had been turned off for a few years.

dndimg alt="Flame of Hope" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Flame of Hope Centenary Square (April 2009) (2).JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

It looked impressive, with a globe and where the flame was once lit up at the top at the turn of the Millennium, sadly it wasn't to last.

dndimg alt="Flame of Hope" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Flame of Hope Centenary Square (April 2009) (3).JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

After this, I never saw the Flame of Hope again, as it was removed to storage before the prepatory works for the Library of Birmingham had begun.

dndimg alt="Flame of Hope" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Flame of Hope Centenary Square (April 2009) (4).JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

Countdown clock to Birmingham 2022

The countdown clock was unveiled on Commonwealth Day during March 2020. A few days later, I had free time, so travelled to Centenary Square to see it. Passing through The Mailbox, while BBC Midlands Today was on, I noticed that they were reporting at it live, so I went to have a coffee in Brindleyplace before checking it out.

dndimg alt="Birmingham 2022" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Bham 2022 countdown clock Cent Sq (March 2020) (1).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

By the time I got there, BBC Birmingham was gone. This view from the back towards HSBC UK at 1 Centenary Square.

dndimg alt="Birmingham 2022" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Bham 2022 countdown clock Cent Sq (March 2020) (2).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

The countdown timer is not on this side. From here you can see HSBC UK, 3 Arena Central, the Municipal Bank and The Cube. West Midlands Metro tram 27 was at Library Tram Stop.

dndimg alt="Birmingham 2022" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Bham 2022 countdown clock Cent Sq (March 2020) (3).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

This side view of the countdown clock towards the Hyatt, Symphony Hall and The ICC. With tram 27 to the left.

dndimg alt="Birmingham 2022" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Bham 2022 countdown clock Cent Sq (March 2020) (4).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Now for the first view with the Library of Birmingham. At the time of my visit with 867 days to go.

dndimg alt="Birmingham 2022" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Bham 2022 countdown clock Cent Sq (March 2020) (5).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

A more central view towards the Library of Birmingham. 867 days, 4 hours, 47 minutes and 00 seconds.

dndimg alt="Birmingham 2022" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Bham 2022 countdown clock Cent Sq (March 2020) (6).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Popped over to Library Tram Stop for some views with West Midlands Metro tram 27 (OLA lime green adverts). The countdown clock to Birmingham 2022 was to the right.

dndimg alt="Birmingham 2022" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Bham 2022 countdown clock Cent Sq (March 2020) (7).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Close up to the front of the tram with the countdown clock to the right. Would have gone down the path near HSBC UK but it was closed off, so headed back into Centenary Square instead.

dndimg alt="Birmingham 2022" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Bham 2022 countdown clock Cent Sq (March 2020) (8).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Heading around the Hall of Memory, got this view to the corner between The ICC and The REP.

dndimg alt="Birmingham 2022" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Bham 2022 countdown clock Cent Sq (March 2020) (9).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Got one more view from near the Hall of Memory towards the foyer works at Symphony Hall.

dndimg alt="Birmingham 2022" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Bham 2022 countdown clock Cent Sq (March 2020) (10).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

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

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Daniel Sturley Construction & regeneration
15 Mar 2020 - Daniel Sturley
Gallery

Birmingham, Cranes Across the City - March Update

Here's the latest crane photography gallery covering February and early March.

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Birmingham, Cranes Across the City - March Update





Here's the latest crane photography gallery covering February and early March.


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Photos by Daniel Sturley

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Stephen Giles Construction & regeneration
09 Mar 2020 - Stephen Giles
Gallery

The Construction of the Mercian - March 2020

A double update this time with photos from February and the first week of March. The core is rising visibly onto the skyline; now reaching level 11, with the main floors creeping up and starting to show its impressive bulk.

 

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The Construction of the Mercian - March 2020





A double update this time with photos from February and the first week of March. The core is rising visibly onto the skyline; now reaching level 11, with the main floors creeping up and starting to show its impressive bulk.

 


With the three-storey podium constructed, attention now turns to the residential aspect above.

This will see the erection of a 39-storey residential tower, with a 14-storey shoulder element. Once complete, The Mercian will yield 481 apartments, all exclusively for rent.

The core slipform is growing in size every couple of days, with the core now sitting pretty on level 10 (March 9th), as seen below.

dndimg alt="" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/MODA Timelapse 9th March 2020.jpg" style="width: 100%;" />Image from Moda Reachtimelapse

Construction of the floors are also creeping up quickly, with the main tower approaching level 10 from Tennant Street, and level 9 from Broad Street.

The 14-storey shoulder is, at this moment in time, halfway through completing its 9th floor. Impressive stuff.

6th-8th MARCH:

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Photos by Stephen Giles

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Photo by John Egan

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Photos by Daniel Sturley

8th February:

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Photos by Daniel Sturley

dndimg alt="" dndsrc="https://www.yourplaceyourspace.net/uploadedfiles/Artist%20Impressions%20of%20The%20Mercian%20-%20MODA%20Tower.png" />Artist Impression from Glenn Howells Architects

Photos by Daniel Sturley, Stephen Giles and John Egan. Words by Stephen.

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Elliott Brown Civic pride
26 Feb 2020 - Elliott Brown
Did you know?

Frederick G. Burnaby: a candidate for a Birmingham MP in 1880 who has an obelisk in Cathedral Square

Have you seen a large obelisk in Cathedral Square near Birmingham Cathedral? It is in memory of Frederick G. Burnaby, a one time Conservative Party candidate to be an MP in Birmingham (in 1880 but he lost). Who died in 1885 at the Battle of Abu Klea, Sudan. The obelisk is close to Temple Row. One side says Khiva 1875 and the other Abu Klea 1885.

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Frederick G. Burnaby: a candidate for a Birmingham MP in 1880 who has an obelisk in Cathedral Square





Have you seen a large obelisk in Cathedral Square near Birmingham Cathedral? It is in memory of Frederick G. Burnaby, a one time Conservative Party candidate to be an MP in Birmingham (in 1880 but he lost). Who died in 1885 at the Battle of Abu Klea, Sudan. The obelisk is close to Temple Row. One side says Khiva 1875 and the other Abu Klea 1885.


Have you ever seen this obelisk in Cathedral Square near Birmingham Cathedral (with the church grounds of St Philip's Cathedral Birmingham) and wondered who it is for? For a war that no one remembers from the late 19th century.

It is in memory of Frederick Burnaby. Born in Bedford on the 3rd March 1842. He died at Abu Klea, Sudan on the 17th January 1885 (aged 42). He had various military adventures overseas including in the Khanate of Khiva during March 1875. He unsuccessfully stood as a Conservative Party candidate to be an Member of Parliament for Birmingham in 1880. His second attempt in 1885 was also unsuccessful (he died in January 1885 and the election was between November and December 1885 so he couldn't had stood, but he must have hoped to be a candidate again in 1884 before he was killed in action). In the 1880 election, the Liberal Party won three seats including John Bright and Joseph Chamberlain. It was a Liberal hold.

The obelisk was unveiled by Lord Charles Beresford on the 13th November 1885. It is a tall Portland stone obelisk, and contins the inscriptions "Khiva 1875" and "Abu Klea 1885" as well as a portrait bust.

The Burnaby obelisk is Grade II lised. It has been listed since 1970.

 

My earliest photos of the Burnaby obelisk was taken during May 2009. This view towards Birmingham Cathedral, with the dome on the left.

dndimg alt="Burnaby obelisk" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Burnaby obelisk outside St Philips Cathedral.JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

Close up of the portrait bust of Frederick Burnaby. Most people just pass this and wouldn't even know who this Victorian man even was!

dndimg alt="Burnaby obelisk" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Burnaby obelisk (May 2009) oval portrait.JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

Not taken many recent photos of the obelisk over the years since, I mostly pass through without getting new photos of it. In May 2017 the flags were at half mast after the Manchester Terror Attack at the Manchester Arena (22nd May 2017). The Burnaby obelisk is seen here between the Union Jack and England flag. This was around a week after that attack.

dndimg alt="Burnaby obelisk" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Burnaby obelisk (May 2017) flags half mast.jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Seen during Early November 2019 from Temple Row. There was leaves on the lawn in Cathedral Square. The Burnaby obelisk seen to the right while the Cathedral was to the left.

dndimg alt="Burnaby obelisk" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Birmingham Cathedral Burnaby obelisk (Nov 2019).jpg" style="width: 100%;" />

Some new photos of the Burnaby obelisk taken in February 2020, as I was thinking of doing this post. This view towards Temple Row. It says Burnaby on this side. There is now plants planted at the bottom on all sides of the obelisk.

dndimg alt="Burnaby obelisk" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Burnaby obelisk (Feb 2020) (1).JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

Close up of Burnaby. Could do with a clean up at the bottom of the obelisk.

dndimg alt="Burnaby obelisk" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Burnaby obelisk (Feb 2020) (2).JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

Khiva 1875. You can see the new 103 Colmore Row rising on the right.

dndimg alt="Burnaby obelisk" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Burnaby obelisk (Feb 2020) (3).JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

Abu Klea 1885. This was where Frederick Burnaby died. Hence he never lived to stand for a second time as a Birmingham Conservative MP. Although the Liberal's won again near the end of 1885, there was more than one Birmingham seat. This view towards St Philip's Place.

dndimg alt="Burnaby obelisk" dndsrc="../uploadedfiles/Burnaby obelisk (Feb 2020) (4).JPG" style="width: 100%;" />

In the end the obelisk was unveiled a few weeks before the 1885 General Election. And it's been on this spot for almost 135 years.

 

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

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Daniel Sturley Construction & regeneration
20 Feb 2020 - Daniel Sturley
Gallery

Constructon of Symphony Hall - February 2020 update

The Symphony Hall extension is rapidly progressing.  It will look spectacular. 

Stephen and Dan have been watching and have documented the development every step of the way. See their February 2020 update here.

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Constructon of Symphony Hall - February 2020 update





The Symphony Hall extension is rapidly progressing.  It will look spectacular. 

Stephen and Dan have been watching and have documented the development every step of the way. See their February 2020 update here.


HOW SYMPHONY HALL WILL LOOK ONCE FINISHED

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The development will provide a state-of-the-art performance space to host 
free and affordable events, improved bars, cafes, seating and hospitality experiences. 

It will also become home for Symphony Hall's Learning and Participation programme, which will include spaces for teaching, performance, and rehearsals. The Box Office and welcome desk will also be relocated to a much more prominent position.

The new look will provide Symphony Hall with a curved sweep of the façade, centred on the Hall of Memory across the square. Two new entrances will be created, both providing quick and direct access from Centenary Square.

dndimg alt="" dndsrc="https://www.yourplaceyourspace.net/uploadedfiles/Symphony%20Hall%20AI.jpg" />Artists Impressions from Page/Park Architects

LATEST PROGRESS ON SITE:

February 14th:

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Photos by Stephen Giles

EARLIER THIS MONTH

February 7th:

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Photos by Reiss Gordon-Henry

4th February:

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Photos by Stephen Giles

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Photos by Daniel Sturley

January 2020:

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Photos by Daniel Sturley

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