Erdington is a ward of Birmingham located 5 miles northeast of Birmingham City centre. Today, it is a small suburb area with a population of approximately 25,000 and is complete with all amenities and facilities we commonly associate with modern urban living.
A Brief History of Erdington
Erdington is known to have been a Midlands settlement going as far back as before Saxon times. During the Middle Ages, a number of important trade routes from the South of England to the upper islands area passed through the settlement. The area, however, had predominantly been a rural one throughout its history up until the 18th century and consisted mostly of farmland. Things started to change from the early 19th century with the coming of the railways and the canals and it, at least partly, changed into an industrial area.
As to more recent history, Erdington is a place especially revered by rock enthusiasts courtesy the erstwhile local club Mother’s which used to be a popular rock venue back in the 1960s. Many popular rock bands of the time including the giants like Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and The Who had performed at the venue till 1971 when the club closed down.
Places of Interest
Those with a taste for history will like a visit to Chester Road and Kingsbury Road at Erdington. Although much changed in appearance today, these roads used to be two of the important trade routes at earlier times. The Fort Dunlop building in Erdington also documents the industrial past of the area. The Abbey Church on the Sutton Road, built in 1847, as well as the Parish Church located on the nearby High Street are among the many favourite tourist attractions in Erdington. And so is the famous Spaghetti Junction. Located on the border of Gravelly Hill and Aston, the junction is quite a unique one since in addition to being a junction for two railway lines and a road interchange, this also happens to be the meeting point of two rivers and three canals. The Bromford Viaduct measuring 3.5 miles is the longest viaduct in Britain and carries the M6 motorway along the River Tame valley between Castle Bromwich and Gravelly Hill.
We have already mentioned the special place Erdington has in England’s rock history. We may also add that Black Sabbath, one of the pioneering bands in the hard metal genre, originated from this area. Erdington was also birthplace to notable actors that include Martin Shaw, Ryan Cartwright and the famous TV host John Oliver. Havergal Brian, the celebrated composer from the early 20th century lived in Erdington.
Erin Arts Centre, located in Victoria Square, is the place to go for culture-savvy people of Erdington. The venue holds music concerts, operas, film screenings, theatre and dance as well as various exhibitions throughout the year. It also hosts the annual Erin Arts Festival, a marquee event for all Erdington residents.