Marketing Birmingham 2050 . . .

Imagine it’s 2050. You are in London at a business meeting in the City. The other people in the room live and work in the capital. They have never met you before.

As part of your introduction to everyone, the convenor of the meeting announces you live in Birmingham. This immediately evokes everyone’s attention. “Hey! Lucky you!” they say. “Wish I could too.”

Is the above response likely now? I have never encountered it, rather quite the reverse. Could it become commonplace by 2050? And if so, how might it happen?


In Part I of the next Birmingham 2050 Report, to be published within a couple of weeks, I argue that a literal greening of our city has a major part to play in creating a Birmingham 2050 that readily elicits such a response. Part II puts this in a global context.

I shall also argue that although our brief history as a major dwelling place means this is a wild challenge, our ancient acestral past provides us with both evidence and a route for us to transform even the ugliest of our industrial heritage into an attractive, even productive landscape, as well as making the challenge huge fun.

Moreover, I shall argue that should we go only part way to meet the challenge — leaving many in 2050 still exhibiting at best sniffy indifference to us — we will have made much of our city a lovely welcoming place where we live happy and fulfilled lives.

The Report title is from Shakespeare’s The Tempest:

What’s past is prologue: What to come
In yours and my discharge. 

The wildflower meadow in Perry Hall Park, reproduced for the Report with the kind permission of the Friends of Perry Hall Park.


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