‘I’m still haunted by you’ so sang Martin Rossiter in Gene’s 1995 hit.
Similarly, Derrida invented hauntology. ‘The term refers to the state of temporal, historical, and ontological disjunction in which the ostensible immediacy of presence is replaced by “the figure of the ghost as that which is neither present, nor absent, neither dead nor alive.”‘
Busting makes us feel good, that’s why we’re always chasing ghosts across town, from island to island, pub to pub, navigating the city by its memory lanes. For Halloween we present you some of our spookier outings. Here you will find pieces where we stand toe to toe with the spectres of Birmingham’s past, you’ll find chillers, thrillers and in the details you’ll find the devil too.
Don’t have nightmares.
Satan over Birmingham
A dark force is at work in industrial Birmingham. The evidence is there before us in our streets, in our museums, in the halls of power, our entertainment venues, our dark mills. Yes the devil himself pervades the fabric of Birmingham culture.
Nowhere is this presence felt more than in the...Read More »
A hundred thousand tables
A hundred (or more) tables but I’m not hungry.
How hungry can one town be? How much lunch can one town eat?
But here they are and here they...Read More »
I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before: I’m not from Birmingham, though I’ve lived here for some time and I’ve learned to pass myself off.
Over the years I’ve developed a fair sense of Birmingham’s official and folk history and I’ve picked up a Brummie twang and an authentic sense of loss...Read More »
Shops used to be different back then, from now and from each other. Each one had its own smell and atmosphere. Visits to Witton Road were infrequent, as the concrete shopping centre at Perry Barr was the preferred destination, but when we did go it was usually for something exciting...Read More »
An Urban Fairytale
The locations and dwarf holes mentioned in this tale are based on fact. The people and all the rest are not.
I walk along the canal and look above wondering how much concrete is necessary to prevent the entire elaborate junction from collapsing. The pillars holding up metal and flesh appear...Read More »
Requiem for a piss stained short cut
It was a shocking moment when after nineteen years of living in Birmingham I realised it will never be finished. The building work will never be done, some part will always be being demolished for another part to be built fresh: no one will ever take a step...Read More »