Yep, you did really read that title correctly. I’m celebrating life in the Midlands. The middle of the country.
It seems that we hear about the North and South of England every day.
With football team rivalries and how you say words like ‘glass’ or ‘bath’, the North/South divide is certainly a thing. The Midlands however, tend to be left out of the conversation, and unfairly too as there are so many things to celebrate here in central England.
If you are a regular reader of my posts, you may know that I originally hail from Shropshire. I then spent the next 15 years moving about for work and lifestyle, living in Cardiff, Worcestershire, Southampton and London before heading back north of the Watford Gap and settling in leafy Warwickshire.
London friends gasped when I told them of our plans to move to the country and build our forever home.
“What do you mean, outside of the M25? Where life is slower, more friendly, greener, cheaper and the schools are better?”
OK, so we are the farthest place away from any coastline, and don’t get me wrong, I still love London and the south of England, but living here slap bang in the middle of the country just suits us.
10 reasons to enjoy The Midlands
Whether you’re living or visiting the East or West Midlands – there are lots of things to love about it. Here are just some of the (many) reasons why…
- The Midlands can claim all sorts of wonderful ideas and innovations born right here in the UK. Let’s start with the industrial revolution in which the Midlands played a pivotal role! Telford, where I am from was in fact the birthplace of industry and sees the first ever Ironbridge, Charles Darwin came from Shrewsbury, and gravity was discovered by Midlander Sir Isaac Newson himself.
- You can find some of the best cider in the world in Herefordshire with a history of over 350 years behind it! You’ll be hard pushed to find a pub which doesn’t stock one of the midland’s own Bulmers brand ciders- with Strongbow and Woodpecker just two of the famous names.
- Birmingham is the UK’s second largest city, has more trees than Paris and is lined with memorable canals. It is a city of innovation, with over half of the UK’s new inventions copyrighted each year coming from Birmingham alone. It’s also a great night out.
- Two words; Robin Hood. Robin Hood came to be in Nottingham and this world will never be the same. You can also find medieval castles, shopping areas and lively locals that people from all around the UK and world come to experience and hang out with.
- You can find some of the most beautiful great outdoors in the UK – including a national park in Derbyshire. The National Forest attracts thousands of visitors from all walks of life to splendour at its beauty!
- Continuing with Derby, both Nottingham and Derby were also voted among the best places to work in the UK to work and live. Work-life balance with nature all around? Yes, that’s definitely a reason to be proud, and probably why job sites are full of jobs in Derby waiting to be snapped up by people keen to get in on the action.
- There’s nothing better than wide-open spaces. Sometimes, the places that are not bustling with people are quite frankly more peaceful and appreciated. The Midlands is home to so many places to explore and take everything in. For example, enjoy hiking? You can climb to the tallest peak in Peak District National Park. Intense hiking not your thing? Don’t worry, you can stop by a natural spring or secret cave along the way if that’s more to your liking. You’ll find something for every age and family interest.
- The land here is speckled with nature reserves and quaint towns that are active and well loved by many with plenty to do. In fact, I visited Alcester just yesterday; absolutely lovely and worth a visit!
- Where there are UNESCO World Heritage Sites, you know it is especially worthy of celebration. For example, you can cycle through a world heritage site in Shropshire and take it all in.
- The Midlands has produced some pretty impressive women certainly worth celebrating! Feminist icon Caitlin Moran, sporting legend Denise Lewis and the hilarious and incredibly talented Julie Walters to name just a few of the long list of incredible ladies.
Residents of the Midlands would probably be able to add another 1000 items to the list. We know how great the Midlands are. Now it is time for the rest of the UK to know!
How can you celebrate where you are from?