Heritage Week: Birmingham’s medieval history uncovered

By on 11/09/2015 in Culture, News

The origins of modern Birmingham will be explored during a guided walk in the city on Tuesday, September 15, as part of Birmingham Heritage Week.

Led by Dr Mike Hodder and Stephanie Rátkai, of Birmingham and Warwickshire Archaeological Society, the walk will be preceded by an introductory talk in the John Lee Theatre at the Birmingham and Midland Institute, in Margaret Street.

Both the talk and the walk will focus on the area around St Martin’s Church, near the Bullring, where there has been a church on the site since 1290 and which was once the historic centre of Birmingham.

Dr Hodder, formerly the city’s planning archaeologist, said: “Excavations around this area have revealed evidence of industries from medieval times, including leather tanning, pottery making and metal working, while similar discoveries were made during excavations a little further down the road along Digbeth, near the River Rea.

“Although we will be talking about things found underground, you can still see evidence of historic Birmingham above ground too. For example, the Old Crown pub in Digbeth dates back to the 15th century and most of the roads in this part of the city centre date back to the Middle Ages. For example, New Street – despite being called ‘New’ – was already there in the 13th century, as were High Street, Digbeth and Edgbaston Street.

“Our guided walk will show you around these parts of the historic centre of Birmingham. You don’t have to come to the talk first, but it will give you a much more detailed introduction to what we will be looking at on the walk.”

The talk begins at 1pm, with the walk starting from the same venue at 2.30pm.

Further information is available from www.bwas-online.co.uk.

Further information on Birmingham Heritage Week, including a full list of events, can be found at www.birminghamculture.org/heritage-week.


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