Author Topic: BBC and Birmingham's "ugly buildings"  (Read 11969 times)

Claude

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BBC and Birmingham's "ugly buildings"
« on: October 16, 2008, 11:53:06 AM »
Misconceptions and stereotypes are annoying enough. Imagine when they're perpetrated by a public corporation. Yesterday a new low was reached when the ailing BBC, having run out of more important stories, decided to report that: "Birmingham has three of the country's ugliest buildings, which include the Bullring and the Central Library, according to a recent survey". Quite obviously, some people have never set foot in London, Newcastle or Liverpool (as well as other cities), each of them home to some seriously ghastly buildings.

To the point, as far as the Bullring is concerned, the 2003 shopping complex is possibly one of the most stylish, futuristic and functional building in Europe.

READ THE REST OF THE ARTICLE here :   http://mymarilyn.blogspot.com/2008/10/birmingham-ugly.html]

The BBC report "City host to 'ugly' buildings" to be found at:  http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/england/7670590.stm

Phil

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Re: BBC and Birmingham's "ugly buildings"
« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2008, 12:48:42 PM »
Hi Claude

Long time no hear, you shouldn't be such a stranger. I wouldn't worry too much about any survey run by the BBC, they obviously have a bias against Birmingham. I wonder how many opinions they sought in Birmingham, I'll tell you "none" thats how many if their survey ran along their usual lines of "we asked people in London, Marchester and Cardiff".

I watch the TV news when they announce the result of similar so called surveys and I scream at the screen "what about Birmingham, why do you miss the Englands second biggest City when doing a survey"

I think that they conspire to mention Birmingham as little as possible, unless it is bad news or something to make people laugh at us. When was the last time you heard a positive story about Birmingham on the TV news, unless it was a local station.

Phil
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roy one

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Re: BBC and Birmingham's "ugly buildings"
« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2008, 01:15:01 PM »
welcome Claude welcome to the forum like most things its in the eye of the beholder just because some one at the BBC thinks its ugly then thats up to them but we know better and ill go with what Phil says our brums agudun  roy
each day is a blessing and I bless each day when it comes

Claude

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Re: BBC and Birmingham's "ugly buildings"
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2008, 03:16:45 PM »
Hey Phil, good to see you again :-). Hi Roy!
Well, I agree with you both. Brum-related jokes are so trite.
However, now The Independent too (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/this-britain/birmingham-named-uks-ugliest-city-963311.html) has picked up on the story, offering an equally irritating angle. How about a national survey on which city counts the arsiest, most arrogant, unfriendliest people?

Phil

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Re: BBC and Birmingham's "ugly buildings"
« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2008, 04:10:48 PM »
Claud

A few points on the Independent article. They say that 40% of Brummie's surveyed agreed that Birmingham housed the ugliest building in the country. Not that they agreed the Bull Ring was the worst building in the Country.  Although if they are talking about that bubble wrap dome then I am in agreement, but I also have to ask in numbers how many were these 40% and what age group. Of the people surveyed outside Birmingham, how many have ever been to Birmingham or were they just shown photo's.

Which leads me on to my other question, why is the photo in the independent one of the old Bull Ring Centre. Is this what the people surveyed were shown. More than likely.

As far as the Central Library goes. I think most of were pretty mad when the old building was torn down and replaced with the new one. Its plain and dumpy I agree, but ugly no. I can name far more uglier buildings in other towns that were built at the same time.

Somebody tell these people that Spaghetti Junction is not a building it is a motorway intersection ugly maybe, but a work of Engineering genius definitely.

When it boils down to it, Birmingham could build a new Taj Mahal and the verdict from the rest of England would be cheap and flashy.

Phil
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Claude

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Re: BBC and Birmingham's "ugly buildings"
« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2008, 07:14:07 PM »
Exactly. I think theirs is lazy journalism. They can't refer to a "survey" without specifying -not even a bit- what exactly was asked and who were those polled.

Of course liking or disliking a building is purely subjective, and everyone's entitled to their own opinion, it goes without saying.

But you're absolutely right when you say:
"Birmingham could build a new Taj Mahal and the verdict from the rest of England would be cheap and flashy".

Certain cliches are just there, like a comfort blanket. It's like a national sport to say that Brum's mingin, like saying that Scousers nick hubcaps and Mancs all walk like Liam Gallagher.
Lazy, lazy stereotypes.

tramp

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Re: BBC and Birmingham's "ugly buildings"
« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2008, 07:18:22 PM »
Looking in Yellow Pages, I found that there are already 5 Taj Mahals in Brum - three on Ladypool Road, one in Oldfield and the other in Alfred Street.

Phil

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Re: BBC and Birmingham's "ugly buildings"
« Reply #7 on: October 16, 2008, 07:53:20 PM »
Ah but would you find an Indian Princess's body lying in state in the Taj Mahal Alfred St. There again could you get a decent curry in the one at Agra.

Phil
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tramp

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Re: BBC and Birmingham's "ugly buildings"
« Reply #8 on: October 16, 2008, 09:22:34 PM »
Phil,

I had a few interesting curries in Agra ( there was nowt else in the 60s, just like chippies only in England)  -  just stop, tell your children and grandchilren of that beautiful bygone age when you could by decent fast food - before McDung, KF, BK and the rest.  There probably a Wendy's and a Baskin-Robo in the Taj nowadays.  Chappatis for breakfast

As for who or what you might find lying in any state in Alfred St....I rest my case.

Telstar

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Re: BBC and Birmingham's "ugly buildings"
« Reply #9 on: October 20, 2008, 07:10:11 PM »
It seems to be the general perception of dear old Brum. Though I've lived for over 30 years in southern Ireland, where my mother's from, I class myself as a born and bred Brummy. Most people I've met abroad or here believe after visiting there, that they have never seen so many ugly structures in one place and, try as I might I find it hard to disagree. It's a dumping ground for bad architects bad ideas. New St Station is the ugliest station in Britain. ( I didn't say that? ) The New Bull Ring is an ugly mess. Another shopping precinct. As well as obliterating the view of the church, old people need a stair lift to get from St Martins upto High St, it's that steep and exhausting. The Albert Speer or Central Library is a concrete bunker that would of been the envy of The Reich. Hitler would still be here if he'd had one of them. It belongs on the atlantic wall. The dropping of Masshouse Circus has made way for confusing roadmarkings ( road graffitti ). A lesson in how to get lost on a straight road, that leads to a plethora of more gruesomely ugly apartment and office buildings. In fact the new Eastside is going to increase the size of the city centre by 25%. It's all ready taking shape. By the look of it it is already on course to help Birmingham scrap all the way for it's place in the uglies lists for the next 50 years! Shame! It's the people in the council, planners etc, that allow this to happen and you vote them in. They have no thought, no vision, just mediocrity! They don't love the city of a thousand trades. The engine powerhouse of Great Britain. The second city of England. It's sad but it's true. They just don't care enough.....
The truth always prevails.....

tramp

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Re: BBC and Birmingham's "ugly buildings"
« Reply #10 on: October 20, 2008, 10:20:29 PM »
Telstar,

I've seen nothing of the ghastly mess you mention, but the same planners, authorisers and executors of that mess are also making their crass and bloodyminded reckless vandalism obvious by their current campaigns of ''wait till it rots, so we can make a few bob off the developers'' with respect to Moseley Rd Swimming Baths and the old former Deritend building in Cannon Hill Park.

The need shooting with very slow bullets...