Archive for the ‘ Local Announcements ’ Category

Exploring Enterprise

When: Tuesday 17th and 24th March, 10:00-15:00
Where: Centrala, Unit 4 Minerva Works, 158 Fazeley Street, Digbeth, B5 5RT

The Entrepreneurs Club, in cooperation with the Prince’s Trust, is running a free two-day workshop for people under 31 years of age who are thinking about working for themselves.

See the flyer below for more information, and book your place now via email to

Click for larger version

Mockingbird March – Free Films

When: until Tuesday 31 March
Where: Mockingbird Theatre and Bar, Custard Factory, Digbeth, B4 9AA
Entry: Free

Mockingbird Theatre and Bar, one of Independent Birmingham’s top 10 bars with a twist, has an exciting programme of free classic and cult cinema lined up for March:

  • Thursday 5th March – The Good, The Bad and The Ugly – 19:30
  • Friday 6th March – Equilibrium @ 18:30, Matrix @ 21:00
  • Saturday 7th March – ET @ 14:00, 2001: A Space Odyssey @ 19:30
  • Wednesday 11th March – Taxi Driver – 19:30
  • Thursday 12th March – Vanishing Point – 19:30
  • Friday 13th March – The Omen @ 18:30, The Exorcist @ 21:45
  • Saturday 14th March – All Day Chick Flicks – from 17:00
  • Tuesday 17th March – Wind That Shakes the Barley – 19:30
  • Wednesday 18th March – Raging Bull – 19:30
  • Thursday 19th March – Rebel Without a Cause – 19:30
  • Saturday 21st March – Monty Python and the Holy Grail – 14:00
  • Saturday 21st March – Rear Window – 19:30
  • Tuesday 24th March – Pitch Perfect – 19:30
  • Wednesday 25th March – The Shawshank Redemption – 19:30
  • Thursday 26th March – Easy Rider – 19:30
  • Tuesday 31st March – The Notebook – 19:30

If you’d like to stay up to date with what’s happening at the Mockingbird, sign up for their mailing list here.

24 Hour Witch Hunt

When: Friday 6th March 2015, 18:00-21:00
Where: Market Hall, Custard Factory, Gibb Street, Digbeth, B9 4AA

This First Friday, a 24 Hour Witch Hunt brings an exhibition of works comprising performance, sculpture and dialogue by artists from Brazil, China, Kurdistan, Pakistan and the UK.

For more information, see the flyer below, or visit the Digbeth First Friday website.

Charity Clothes Swap

When: Thursday 12 March, 16:00-20:00
Where: North Gallery, The Custard Factory, Gibb Street, Digbeth, B9 4AA
Entry: £3

Two students are spearheading a charity clothes swap event, taking place at the Custard Factory next week in aid of St Basil’s charity.

Stall holders on the day include St Basil’s, ECO, Trunk Junkies, and Krispy Kreme. All attendees are asked to pay £3 on the door and bring a bag of unwanted clothing, which will be valued and exchanged for tokens to spend at the event. If you don’t have any clothes to swap – don’t panic! – you can also buy tokens for cash.

All proceeds from the event will be donated to St Basil’s, with any leftover clothing gifted to the British Heart Foundation (as St Basil’s do not accept clothing donations). In addition, the volunteers selected by St Basil’s to help at the event will have their time recognised as work experience, and will also receive references to be used on their CVs to boost their employability for future job interviews.

For more information, see the flyer below (click for larger version).

Our Class

When: Saturday 28 February, 17:00
Where: Stryx Arts, Unit 13, Minerva Works, 158 Fazeley Street, Digbeth, B5 5RS
Tickets: Free

Stuck for something to do this Saturday evening in Digbeth? Stryx Arts invite you to a free performance of their theatre class play Our Class:

The play depicts a group of classmates – Poles and Jews – whose story begins in the 1930s when their calm and care-free life is shattered by superstitions of anti-Semitism. After the break of the war, the town is invaded by Soviets and later by Nazis. The people react differently…

In the end, all the classmates, scattered through Poland, America or Israel, are trying to accept the reality.

For more information, visit the Facebook event page.

Digbeth First Friday – March 2015

When: Friday 6 March, 18:00 until late
Where: venues across Digbeth

Digbeth First Friday welcomes the spring season next Friday 6th March with an exciting assortment of exhibitions, music, performance and street food. Some of the events on offer this month include:

  • Eastside Projects, 86 Heath Mill Lane, B9 4AR
    This Time of Day can be Dangerous

    Eastside Projects opens this exhibition of moving image works by Georgie Grace, which examine modes and limits of immersion and perception.
  • Market Hall at The Custard Factory, Gibb Street, B9 4AA
    A twenty four hour witch hunt

    With performances, sculpture and dialogue by artists from Brazil, China, Kurdistan, Pakistan, and the UK, this event explores the political, cultural, social and personal aspects of beginning conversations.
  • Digbeth Community Garden, Shaw’s Passage, B5 5PG
    Pop-up Waste Food Café

    The Real Junkfood Project offer a ‘pay as you feel’ pop-up café using food that would otherwise have been discarded to make delicious meals and snacks. There will also be music and a caricaturist for your entertainment.
  • Centrala, Unit 4, Minerva Works, 158 Fazeley Street, B5 5RT
    „Na Emigracji/On emigration“

    A series of illustrations created under the influence of the artist’s migration experiences. Centrala invites the audience to interact with the exhibition by writing or drawing illustrations describing their own experiences about emigration.
  • Grand Union, Unit 19, Minerva Works, 158 Fazeley Street, B5 5RS
    Two six-minute performances at 19:00 and 20:00
    No Ironic Tip of the Hat to Class – Consciousness Can Save Us Now!

    Patrick Goddard performs his work illustrating the conflict between stultifying self-criticism and an often naïve political commitment.
  • HFWAS, Unit 9 Minerva Works, 158 Fazeley Street, B5 5RS
    Ideas of Noise

    Sarah M Farmer and HFWAS present an evening of performances from musicians and sound artists including a string quartet, free improv, harsh noise ballet, instrumental/synth songs and six piece guitar/bass experiment.
  • A3 Project Space, Unit A3, 2 Bowyer Street, B10 0SA

    A3 Project Space opens its doors for the first time this year and invites you out of the cold and grey into a realm of flaming fiesta and hot gitano spirit. Join your hosts Thomas Doherty and Andrew Palmer for an evening of celebration, food, drinks and dance.
  • The Edge, 81 Cheapside, B12 0QH
    First Friday Frolics

    Friction Arts, Artists On The Edge and Inclement Quartet come together to deliver tall tales, stand up and performances from enigmatic characters, followed by Inclement Quartet’s final performance.

For more information about this month’s events, see the Digbeth First Friday website or follow them on Twitter.

Spotted Dog Reviews

If you’re a regular in one of Digbeth’s finest inns, The Spotted Dog, you will no doubt be familiar with landlord John Tighe and his inimitable sense of humour.

John is one of the characters that makes Digbeth the fantastic place it is, and having recently come across this online exchange courtesy of Sean Tighe, we just had to share it.

We’d like to take this opportunity to put our stake in the ground and say that John and indeed all the staff at The Spotted Dog are some of the most generous, intelligent and welcoming people you will ever meet. They have supported Digbeth is Good and Digbeth Residents Association since inception, and continue to be a local institution in their own right.

The reviewer below is clearly mistaken, and quite frankly put right by John in his individually logophilic style. We have reproduced the postings in full so must warn you in advance of the slightly firmer-than-usual language used.

Three cheers for The Spotted Dog!

J Stone left this review about The Spotted Dog on 15th February 2015
I would like to complain about the Spotted Dog Pub in Digbeth. I took my wife and three children there this evening for Classical Sunday. I wanted my children to be exposed to some free classical music and thought sitting in a pub on a dreary winter’s day on a Sunday afternoon listening to classical music would be perfect !

We have a10yr old who plays the piano and a 3 and a 2 year old. They are lovely, polite, well mannered children. The bar maid brought them out some colouring books which was very kind of her and our children were well behaved throughout although towards the end our smallest child started getting a bit irritable (as 2 year olds do !) so we promptly moved to the adjacent bar.

I took my 3yr old to the toilet and on my return my wife seemed visibly very upset and said we had to leave. I asked her why, and apparently one of the customers had sworn in front of her and the children using an ‘F’ word basically saying that our children were making too much noise ! I was very angry at this and went to confront him back in the main bar. The polish bar girl asked for the Landlord’s support and to my surprise instead of backing us, he continued to say that our children were noisy and that we were unwelcome at his establishment.

I just feel so upset at how we were treated ! Why put on an afternoon of classical music in which everyone should be able to enjoy only to be treated like 2nd class citizens and furthermore have a Landlord who doesn’t do anything about his customers swearing infant of small children ??!

The children left the pub so traumatised as to what had just occurred and it took us a good 2 hours to calm them down.

I feel we have been shabbily treated and would never ever recommend The Spotted Dog to people with children. It is the most un family friendly establishment I have ever visited !

  * * * * *

John Tighe left this review about The Spotted Dog on 17th February 2015
In response to J Stone’s review of 15/2/2015

It’s difficult to decide which is the more irritating customer to have to deal with – the entitled dog-owner or the half-witted parent who thinks the sun shines out of his off-spring’s rear. I think, on the whole, more pub-goers are irritated by unruly children than by dogs. But, of course, it is not the dog’s or the child’s fault. The problem lies with the inability or disinclination of the owner/parent to control their precious little gems.

What actually happened?

The Spotted Dog, a corner working-class boozer, hosts, with great pride, twice a month, an afternoon of classical music performed by up to ten students and ex-students of Birmingham Conservatoire. Harpists, violinists, cellists, opera singers, flautists, pianists and others, each performing solo for 15 – 20 minutes. Beneficial to the students who get to perform in an environment different from their normal one of symphony halls or conservatoires. They also earn a few bob like their cousins the “jazzers” who have many venues in which to perform. They love it! Also, these afternoons are aimed at Philistines, like yours truly (brought up on a diet of Chuck Berry and Jerry Lee Lewis), in an attempt to introduce us to classical music. These kids are astonishingly talented and a joy to listen to. There are notices in the pub requesting (actually, demanding) silence during the performances.

Mr Entitled Dickhead plonks himself, wife and three kids (surely not his, probably the product of IVF if his hissy fit was evidence of his manliness!) in the middle of the audience and appears oblivious to the fact, almost proud, that one of the kids is shouting and screaming during one of the harp solos. Since he seemed unwilling to control this little monster, who was ruining the enjoyment of all the other customers, I politely pointed out that there was another room to which they could relocate. The wife, face like thunder, gathered up her mini-terrorist and decamped followed by Mr Dickhead and the rest of the brood. After the last performance he came storming in, no doubt encouraged by his harridan wife, to complain about someone being rude to his beloved. When I expressed surprise that I had had to suggest to him that he and his family should have respect for the performers and audience, and when I pointed out that I, not he, am the sole arbiter of how my pub is run and how the clientele should behave he really lost the plot. In front of his kids and wife he had no problem screaming a load of nonsense liberally spiced with c-, f- and w-words (I’ll leave you to work out “w-word”). He left with a shouted threat, witnessed by about ten people, “to burn the f-ing pub down”. Silly man!

As to the points in his post:

  • His wife was not insulted by anyone as far as we could tell.
  • The “polish girl”, surely Polish, was almost certainly patronising him – her day job is caring for people, some quite aggressive, with learning difficulties.
  • Any new words that his wife’s children learned emanated from him.
  • If they were traumatised, it was probably that they were worried that such lack of control and gross inconsideration for others might be genetic.

I’m not sure that we’ve ever been compared to pubs in Asia before, but we have welcomed kids in The Spotted Dog and it’s garden for thirty years. One proviso, though – they have to be accompanied by a RESPONSIBLE adult. Maybe he didn’t see the notice to that effect, though, I’d prefer to believe that he did, but couldn’t understand or read it.

Please, please do not amend this half-wit’s post, because it will be very consoling for the rest of the customers who attend Sunday Classics that this inconsiderate, self-important, moron will never again be there.

And, by the way, we don’t allow dogs in!

John Tighe.

Levitate: Birmingham Music Week

When: Monday 23 February – Sunday 1 March
Where: The Custard Factory, Gibb Street, Digbeth, B9 4AA

Levitate: Birmingham Music Week is a series of events designed to showcase and raise the profile of Birmingham’s music industry. Taking place this week across the city, Levitate consists of live, academic and industry-led interventions.

The central part of the initiative is the Levitate Summit, taking place tomorrow, Thursday 26th February, at The Old Library in the Custard Factory. Uniting musicians, students, promoters, venue owners, experts and academics in a day of workshops, panels, and keynote speakers, Levitate Summit hopes to increase collaboration in the Birmingham music industry.

Following the Summit, tomorrow evening will see Levitate Live take over Alfie Bird’s & The Oobleck with an exuberant line up echoing the variety of Birmingham’s music scene, with performances from:


A key element of Levitate is to highlight the vast array of regular live music events taking place in Birmingham through the Birmingham Music Map. For more information about Levitate, visit the website, Facebook or Twitter.

Six Eight Kafé Comes to Digbeth!

Earlier this month, Six Eight Kafé celebrated the opening of their second Birmingham premises on Level 2 in Millennium Point.

Voted one of the top 50 coffee shops in the UK by the Independent, Six Eight Kafé will bring its acclaimed range of coffee, speciality teas and artisan food to Digbeth, alongside its live music and exhibition offering.

We for one are delighted to welcome 6/8 to Digbeth, particularly as it adds another independent business to our area to compliment similar outlets like Yumm Café and The Old Crown Coffee Club. Let’s hope to see the Kafé go from strength to strength!

Bad Girl Bash

Constance PeachWhen: Friday 27th February, 20:00
Where: Alfie Birds, Custard Factory, Digbeth, B9 4AA

Celebrating four years as the self-proclaimed Bad Girl photographer, Claire Seville has invited the cream of the Burlesque and Alternative world to help her celebrate in style at Alfie Bird’s this Friday.

Claire worked as both a dancer and a DJ before recognising her passion for photography. Since then, her work has been printed in Bizarre magazine, and she recently emerged from behind her camera to be photographed herself for the front cover of Rebelicious.

Constance Peach and Ruby Fortune are amongst the many acts confirmed for Friday, and guests will be able to dance the night away to classic rock and electro swing. There will also be an exhibition of some of Claire’s favourite work from the past few years.

Claire told us “I’m really looking forward to seeing all the amazing friends I’ve had the privilege of working with over the years from models, to make up artists, to designers. They’ve all helped me get to where I am today and my Bad Girl Bash is my way of saying thank you to all of them.”

For further information, contact Claire on or visit her Facebook page.