I feel attached to Brum – it’s where I spread my wings as a teenager, and I’ve spent years there, shopping, exploring and having fun. The last two decades have seen so much change there, when I was recently given a copy of Mac Joseph’s book ‘Bull Ring Birmingham in Postcards and Old Photographs’, it brought back a whole bunch of memories. I then remembered I had some self-taken pictures and bits of ephemera of the changes.Although I’m not a Brummie, I feel like one, and I pine for the days when the city showed so much vision and potential. It seemed anything was possible, for a while.
I remember well that compass orienteer set into the brickwork of the central reservation. I can recall peering out of the pedestrian bridge with a relative when I was about 10. It all seemed so modern then. The Rotunda, of course, is iconic, and reminds me of coming home. When I see that, I know I've returned. Taken from 'Bull Ring Birmingham in Postcards and Photographs' by Mac Joseph.
Construction well underway from the Bullring webcam (hence the poor image quality) - note St. Martins stranded forlorn and the covered pedestrian walkway across the site.
The King Kong sculpture didn't last long, and eventually ended up in a Spook Erection marketplace in Scotland. I loved Manzoni Gardens.Taken from 'Bull Ring Birmingham in Postcards and Photographs' by Mac Joseph.
Great discussion about the King Kong sculpture and it’s travels here…
One of my own pictures taken from inside the new Bullring during development. This is looking out from West Mall onto what would be the central square. St. martins would be to the left of shot.
The far end of the site from a snowy, winter day. Picture saved from the Bullring Webcam.
This would now be about where the road tunnel goes under the centre from the front of New Street. How grimy it looks.Taken from 'Bull Ring Birmingham in Postcards and Photographs' by Mac Joseph.
Another of my photos from the time of the Bull Ring demolition - St. Martins House is just beginning to be demolished, and this would be at the foot of the Rotunda at the lower end of High Street. Manzoni Gardens was down there somewhere.
Remarkably, throughout the upheaval, life carried on as normal in the nearby building. Brummies just got on with it. This webcam shot shows New Street Station operating as normal.
Reader Howmuch? says that he can remember that after the sixties Bull Ring opened, there were gorillas in a shop unit converted to house them for entertainment. Anyone remember that? This view is one I remember well, and is still vey iconic to me. Taken from 'Bull Ring Birmingham in Postcards and Photographs' by Mac Joseph.
Another view from during the construction of the West Mall. This is the construction of the glass curtain at the crossway over the central walkway, from the upper level. Note the boxed in, ever present pedestrian route beyond the glass. The necessity to maintain this right of way caused the builders massive headaches.