The New Birmingham c. 1964
I think the Ringway Centre sums up what might have been for the Inner
Ring Road more than any building in the city. Its 750ft sweeping
frontage along Smallbrook Queensway was one of the longest shopping
frontages in the country when constructed. A change of council
policy, however, meant later sections of the Inner Ring Road were
designed with the seperation of cars and people in mind.
Another James A. Roberts building, it was completed in 1961 and
contained a ballroom with one of the largest floors in the
Midlands. While I am not great fan of 1960's concrete buildings,
I have a fondness for this one that I can't explain but, perhaps, is
partly justified by this photo I took one sunny June day back in 2010...
In 2014, the offices, shops and restaurants continued to be used as
designed, despite fierce competition from elsewhere in the city.
Centre, Jan 1959. Photo by
D. J. Norton.
Ringway Centre by night, November
1960. Photo by D. J. Norton.
Ringway Centre, now SBQ, September