Socks and Chocs

The Socks and Chocs collection point at Yumm Cafe.

By now, I’m sure all our readers are familiar with PC Ian Northcott, also known as the Busking Bobby. Ian works from Digbeth Police Station, and in his spare time, runs the Socks and Chocs charity.

Having won at the Pride of Birmingham Awards earlier this year, the charity has gained more exposure, but we’re keen to support Digbeth people making a difference, and Ian certainly falls into this category.

The charity collects socks and chocolates to distribute to the city’s homeless throughout the year, and any cash donations made are either spent on buying more of these or sleeping bags. No one involved in the charity draws a wage.

If you’re coming into Digbeth for Digbeth First Friday this evening, or City of Colours tomorrow, or any other events later in the month, including Digmas, make sure to bring a donation of socks and chocs with you to drop into the collection point at Yumm Cafe in the Custard Factory (pictured).

We’ll appreciate it, Digbeth will be grateful, and the recipients of your generosity will be that bit warmer and cosier this Christmas.

Thank you for your support.

Digbeth Doubles

When: Friday, 5th December, 20:00-23:00
Where: The Spotted Dog, 104 Warwick Street, Digbeth, B12 0NH

As part of Digbeth First Friday, Digbeth Doubles present a double bill of films celebrating the surrealist Dali.

The evening will start with a screening of Hello Dali! (1973) – a long forgotten documentary of enlightening hilarity and unrelenting Dali-isms. The documentary was shown on Channel 4 in 1985, this is a VHS recording of that presented complete with its original adverts!

The documentary will be followed by a talk from Joss Walker, doctor of philosophy, then book-ended with a screening of surreal classic Un Chien Andalou.

For more information see the Digbeth First Friday or Grapevine Birmingham websites.

December Meeting of DRA

When: Monday 8th December 2014, 18:00 onwards
Where: Old Crown Restaurant, High Street Deritend, Digbeth

The next meeting of Digbeth Residents Association will take place on Monday 8th December at 18:00 in the Old Crown on Digbeth High Street.

This meeting will feature the Digbeth Community Awards and also a festive end of year buffet. Do come along to help us celebrate all that has been achieved in 2014, and look forward to an even better 2015!

If you have any questions ahead of the meeting or would like to submit apologies, please do email

City of Colours Winter Showcase – This Weekend!

When: Saturday 6 December, 10:00-18:00
Where: The Custard Factory, Gibb Street, Digbeth, B9 4AA

If you’re excited about the return of City of Colours in September 2015, whet your appetites with the Winter Showcase this weekend!

Involving over 30 local artists, a huge Christmas market hall, affordable art sale, DJs, retro gaming, graffiti battle on an NYC style subway carriage, screen printing, break dancing and graffiti workshops, and lots of mulled wine and tasty street food, you’d be silly to miss it!

See you there!

Anchor Birthday Bash

When: Friday 5th December, 19:00 onwards
Where: The Anchor, 308 Bradford Street, Digbeth, B5 6ET

If the fun and frolics of Digbeth First Friday wasn’t enough, the Anchor are holding their annual Birthday Party this week too!

Head down to our four-times CAMRA winning Pub of the Year for free drink, free food, a raffle and prizes this Friday!

For more information, follow @anchordigbeth on Twitter.

Digbeth First Friday – December 2014

When: Friday 5th December, 18:00 onwards
Where: Various locations around Digbeth

This weeks sees 2014′s final instalment of Digbeth First Friday, but it’s going to be a corker!

Amongst other events taking place, Grand Union are throwing a Magic City Christmas Party to celebrate the fast approaching festive season.

There will be Christmas Cocktails and music from 8pm until late, and also a special Santa’s Grotto, Robot Reindeer Races and prizes to be won in the Christmas raffle. Check out the Facebook event page for more information.

Of course, this won’t be the only fun to be had on Friday; click here to visit the Digbeth First Friday website and learn more about the events taking place at Eastside Projects, The Bond, Digbeth Dining Club, Vivid Projects, Rope Press, and Centrala, amongst others.


West Midlands Police has launched WMP2020, a consultation to help define how the force will operate in the future.

WMP want to deliver continual service improvements despite on-going and unprecedented financial challenges. The consultation will result in a blueprint on how the public sees the role of the police, and how the force could work more closely with partner agencies such as the NHS and local councils.

Police and Crime Commissioner and friend of DRA, David Jamieson, said: “We want to work together with the public and partners to develop the new model so it’s meaningful to people across the West Midlands.”

To take part, visit the West Midlands Police website to answer a new daily question. As well as being posted via the force’s social media accounts on Facebook and Twitter, questions will also be shared by local neighbourhood officers at face to face meetings.

If you share your views, you could be in with the chance to win a prize money can’t buy, such as a visit to the police kennels and dog training centre, or a visit to the police driving school!

Digmas 2014

When: Saturday 20th December, 12:00-18:00
Where: Custard Factory, Gibb Street, Digbeth, B9 4AA

Digmas returns to the Custard Factory this year as Digbeth’s alternative Christmas fair offering.

Featuring Santa’s Grotto complete with real reindeer, a carousel, children’s face-painting and crafts, sizzling street food courtesy of our award-winning Digbeth Dining Club, the Urban Village vintage fair and lots of live music, the day certainly promises to be packed with entertainment!

The Digmas market will see the city’s independent traders selling unique gifts, alongside the Custard Factory’s permanent shops who will also be offering exclusive discounts.

Add to that some festive films being screened at The Mockingbird, including Muppet’s Christmas Carol, White Chrismas and Gremlins, and live music and carols, you have your last Saturday before Christmas sorted!

For more information, visit the Custard Factory website, and if you’re interested in taking a stall at the fair, email

ArtBus – December 2014

When: Wednesday 3 December, 17:00-21:00
Where: Eastside Projects, 86 Heath Mill Lane, Digbeth, B9 4AR

ArtBus returns next week, allowing you to hop on and hop off at Birmingham’s leading galleries to enjoy an evening of free after hours culture.

Including the Barber Institute, Ikon Gallery, mac Birmingham, the RBSA Gallery, and Digbeth’s very own Eastside Projects, ArtBus is a great opportunity to discover new venues and explore old favourites.

A bus timetable can be downloaded from the Eastside Projects website here.

Day One Festival

When: 1 January 2015, 12:00-01:00
Where: The Rainbow Warehouse, Lower Trinity Street, Digbeth
Tickets: from £25

Those that attended the inaugural edition of Day One Festival this year will be thrilled at the prospect of bringing in 2015 when the festival returns to Digbeth on New Year’s Day.

Taking over an entire street, converted car park and not one, but two warehouses, Day One Festival organisers have invited the crème de la crème of the modern house and techno worlds to join them for the first party of 2015.

For more information, and to buy tickets, click here to visit the Skiddle website.