The powers that be in the West Midlands have finally decided that it would be a good idea to work together, instead of the petty parochial nonsense that has gone on for years. Let us briefly rejoice for a moment at the thought that they might actually start working for our mutual advantage – hurrah!
Unfortunately, they’ve then gone and had a logo made for a place that doesn’t exist – then gone and spent thousands of pounds promoting a place that doesn’t exist to foreign investors who won’t ever be able to find the place that doesn’t exist…. because it doesn’t exist on any map.
The place that doesn’t exist is the area the powers that be seem determined to call “Greater Birmingham”.
Apparently we need a new name for all the towns and cities that are in the West Midlands, because obviously the West Midlands doesn’t have a collective name, except that it does – it’s called WEST MIDLANDS.
For sure, some people somewhere at sometime started to use the West Midlands as both a county name for the area roughly around Birmingham and the Black Country – and also to name a wider region incorporating Herefordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire and Worcestershire. And yes, there probably are some people who still consider Birmingham to be in Warwickshire – and no doubt others consider themselves to still be in Staffordshire, etc.
However, it can’t be too reckless to assume that most people would identify the West Midlands as being the place served by the West Midlands Police, West Midlands Fire Service, West Midlands Ambulance Service and National Express West Midlands buses – which is by and large the same place they’re trying to call “Greater Birmingham”.
Plus, whereas you’re obviously going to get a sharp response from people in other towns and cities about being called “Birmingham”, are those people going to mind nearly as much that they’re now Dudley, West Midlands or Solihull, West Midlands?!
They couldn’t even get the powers in Solihull to agree to sit quietly under the “Greater Birmingham” moniker when creating their local enterprise partnership – resulting in the utterly ridiculous name of “Greater Birmingham & Solihull”. If anywhere is “Greater Birmingham” it is Solihull – see their Birmingham post code, Birmingham dialing code……oh and Birmingham Airport.
Is Solihull more special than the towns of the Black Country? No. It just isn’t. We have every reason to be united as the West Midlands – and every reason to also be telling folk that there’s not just one mass urban sprawl of Birmingham – but some fantastic towns and cities each with their own character.
Okay, so this post is full of my own views and opinions and let’s not pretend I can speak for everyone else in my assumptions. But if they really want to get rid of a perfectly good name and replace it with this “Greater Birmingham” moniker – they could at least ask the people who live here.
Just because they have the power to create a logo and put that logo on things, does not in any way make it okay for them to just go off and invent a new name at their whim. At present this is the WEST MIDLANDS – if you want to change the name, ask us.
The people should decided – not a little clique who think they have the power.