[231], Birmingham's development as a commercial town was originally based around its market for agricultural produce, established by royal charter in 1166. The Birmingham Back to Backs are the last surviving court of back-to-back houses in the city. [190] Other producing theatres in the city include the Blue Orange Theatre in the Jewellery Quarter; the Old Rep, home stage of the Birmingham Stage Company; and @ A. E. Harris, the base of the experimental Stan's Cafe theatre company, located within a working metal fabricators' factory. [113], Birmingham is dominated by the Birmingham Fault, which runs diagonally through the city from the Lickey Hills in the south west, passing through Edgbaston and the Bull Ring, to Erdington and Sutton Coldfield in the north east. [73], Most significant, however, was the development in 1776 of the industrial steam engine by James Watt and Matthew Boulton. As of 2018[update], the council has a Labour Party majority and is led by Ian Ward. [215] The Barber Institute of Fine Arts in Edgbaston is one of the finest small art galleries in the world,[216] with a collection of exceptional quality representing Western art from the 13th century to the present day.[217]. It is still in use. The trade employed 2,867 people in 1851, out of a total of 7,731 in the whole of England and Wales. LYP MEMBERSHIP APPLIES. Gun dealers specialising in, shooting supplies, firearms, airguns, ammunition, airgun pellets, reloading and shooting supplies. [22] The city will host the 2022 Commonwealth Games. The National Indoor Arena hosted the 2007 European Athletics Indoor Championships and the 2003 and 2018 World Indoor Championships, as well as hosting the annual Aviva Indoor Grand Prix – the only British indoor athletics fixture to qualify as an IAAF Indoor Permit Meeting[342] – and a wide variety of other sporting events. Today, the city is home of two of the country's oldest professional football teams: Aston Villa F.C., which was founded in 1874 and plays at Villa Park; and Birmingham City F.C., which was founded in 1875 and plays at St Andrew's. General Custer is known to have owned a Galand and Sommerville .44 revolver, which was faster to load than existing American pistols. Birmingham Central Mosque, one of the largest in Europe, was constructed in the 1960s. [46] These trading links gave Birmingham's metalworkers access to much wider markets, allowing them to diversify away from lower-skilled trades producing basic goods for local sale, towards a broader range of specialist, higher-skilled and more lucrative activities. I do hope any future plans will be to preserve these outstanding architecture buildings and keep them for future generations to appreciate our industrial pass. Snow Hill Wharf is situated on the edge of the historic Gun Quarter of Birmingham and within easy walking distance of Colmore Business district, Snow Hill Station and Aston University. [255], Highrise development has slowed since the 1970s and mainly in recent years because of enforcements imposed by the Civil Aviation Authority on the heights of buildings as they could affect aircraft from the Airport (e.g. Beetham Tower).[256]. [306], The former Birmingham Central Library, opened in 1972, was considered to be the largest municipal library in Europe. [150] In addition to Birmingham itself, the LUZ includes the Metropolitan Boroughs of Dudley, Sandwell, Solihull and Walsall, along with the districts of Lichfield, Tamworth, North Warwickshire and Bromsgrove. Birmingham's gun trade still exists as a small specialised industry, though only just in evidence in what remains of the old Gun Quarter. [1][2], During the early to mid-17th century Birmingham's population numbered only several thousand; the town was home to many foundries and workshops that made a wide variety of metalware, including guns. During this time the Gun Quarter made a variety of calibre weapons from high quality to the less elaborate. Jazz has been popular in the city since the 1920s,[182] and there are many regular festivals such as the Harmonic Festival, the Mostly Jazz Festival and the annual International Jazz Festival. [23] Birmingham is the fourth-most visited city in the UK by foreign visitors. The principal governing institutions of medieval Birmingham – including the Guild of the Holy Cross and the lordship of the de Birmingham family – collapsed between 1536 and 1547,[40] leaving the town with an unusually high degree of social and economic freedom and initiating a period of transition and growth.

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