'I was shivering outside, I was just crying'
Plus: a Diwali celebration to make your mouth water and the annual Irish trad festival
Good morning readers—and just like that, it’s the end of another week.
Your Brum in Brief today is heavy on culture, with news of a major South Asian dance production coming to the city next year. There’s also a link to brilliant local travel writer Richard Franks’ latest piece about the greener side of Birmingham — an unusual perspective on a place which is so often associated with the smoke and grime of industry.
Before that — I’ve had some great responses to yesterday’s news that we are looking to hire another staff writer in the coming months. Please do pass the news on to any writers and reporters you know, and if they want to know more about what the role entails, I’m available for a phone call or to meet for a coffee and a chat.
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Brum in Brief
🌥️ Dry and sunny with a few patches of cloud. Potential showers in the evening.
💃🏽A major dance production is coming the the Birmingham Hippodrome in April next year. South Asian contemporary dancers Aakash Odedra and Aditi Mangaldas are bringing their show Mehek to the city. About an older woman and a younger man, the performance is an “exploration of the human heart, its desires, courage and resilience”.
🚨 An Indian couple say they are experiencing nightmares and panic attacks after being harassed by a group of young people, incidents which they believe to be racially motivated. Doorbell camera footage seen by the BBC shows figures kicking the family’s front door. Radhika Kulkarni and husband Ramana Nagumalli reported five occasions of harassment to West Midlands Police in July but have been told that while the youths admitted to wrongdoing, there is insufficient evidence to treat the incidents as racially aggravated. Ms Kulkarni said: "I was shivering outside, I was just crying.”
📰Birmingham travel writer, Richard Franks, has a feature in the new issue of JRNY magazine all about the second city, exploring it by green methods: foot, bike, and —remarkably — kayak. But the piece touches on some interesting history too. Franks describes how the canals were used to transport coal and iron from the mid-18th century until the 1980s. He tells the story of Victorian civic building The Roundhouse which fell into disrepair in the late 20th century, but was revived by the National Trust in 2001. He visits the Key Hill Cemetery where some illustrious Brummies are buried and even finds time to recommend some delicious bites to eat. You can order the magazine in print here or read it online at Readly.
🕯️Sunday will be the main day for celebrating Diwali this year and Indian street food specialist Bundobust will be hosting a party at the Hockley Social Club from 12-10pm. “Expect first-rate food from Bundobust, Dan Lee’s Dai Pai Dong and Greidy’s Wings & Strips, alongside drinks by Hockley Social and beer fresh from Bundobust’s brewery, plus entertainment in the form of DJs, dhol drummers, henna art, live music, and more.” Tickets are £2 on the door.
🎻Tickets for Birmingham Trad Fest are available now, featuring live music, workshops and sessions in venues around Digbeth from 23-26 November. The event is in its eighth year and aims to “reignite the spirit of the once thriving Irish music scene in Brum, and to showcase the raw energy and excitement for trad which had once established the city as a hotspot for trad in Britain.”
Today’s cover photo of a diwali lamp is by Amul Madan.