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The British Academy funded exhibition ‘Number 11: Know Your Place’ is open until October 2024. Free of charge.

Mon – Fri, 9am to 9pm.

Saturday, 11 am to 5pm

Sunday, Closed

Ground floor foyer (next to the escalators), The Library of   Birmingham, Centenary Square, Birmingham B1 2ND.

How well do you know the place you live?

Images of the varied landscape around the route of the number 11 bus

In 2024 we received a British Academy SHAPE Inspire and Engage grant to produce an exhibition about looking more closely at the world around us. We used the route of Birmingham’s 27-mile circular number 11 bus route to highlight the city’s landscape and its fascinating history. We have selected roughly one interesting place for every mile of the route. Stan’s Café Theatre Company and photographer Ming de Nasty visited each place and took photographs of passers-by holding signs pointing to the point of interest. Prof Kathryn Moore and Dr Alex Albans worked with Prof Carl Chinn MBE and staff at the Library of Birmingham’s local studies collection to write a narrative of these places, and select artefacts relating to these interesting places from their archive.

  • Has the exhibition made you think about Birmingham’s landscape differently?
  • We’d love to know if something you’ve seen on the number 11 route sparked your imagination.
  • What interesting places on the number 11 bus route would you point out if you were giving a tour?

3 thoughts on “Number 11: Know Your Place”

  1. I am the County Commissioner for Birmingham and one of my aims while I am
    in office is to celebrate Birmingham more and bring it alive for our girls and leaders. Many of whom just really know where they live. We are going to develop a challenge with a badge around the No. 11 route. So I am very interested in the exhibition and would have loved to
    Have gone on the tour on Thursday so any tips or highlights are very welcome.

  2. Hi Janice, what a fabulous idea, and such an important part of young people’s lives.
    We’d love to help explore what this could be, and it’d be great to talk more about this if you’d like to.
    I’ll be in touch.

  3. Howard Williams

    My thought on “Number 11: Know Your Place’ is about how many children (as I was in the 1970s, from Selly Oak to Harborne) have travelled to and from school on the Number 11?
    Now pay attention children, time for sums – and put your phone away at the back there!
    The Outer Circle has been running for one-hundred years, each child is at school for say five years, that’s roughly twenty sets. I don’t know about your school journeys but mine were always over half-full with excited kids on perhaps three or four peak-time buses; call it one hundred each day? There were three or four main schools on my three-mile section, so estimate one school for each of the twenty-seven mile Outer Circle? And don’t forget, there are passengers approaching school from two directions.
    So we have: 20x100x27x2 = 108,000. Maybe an over-estimate given today’s (over) use of cars instead of public transport, call it 50,000. Wow, aren’t we a special group!
    (Ahem, perhaps my teacher could check my maths………..)

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