Top 10 reasons to pick Birmingham and the West Midlands

1. The UK's second biggest city

Connected to everywhere, but so unlike anywhere else in the world, Birmingham is the beating heart of the West Midlands and the second biggest city in the UK.

In Europe’s youngest city, curiosity is everything. Our people are powered by creativity, building on an incredibly rich local heritage while sharing bold new ideas which will shape our city for years to come. And they’re not just ideas – this is a place where things get done. You can see it in our industrial past, we see it in our future, filled with innovation.

In Birmingham, everyone is welcome, so however long you stay, it will feel like home. Once you’ve experienced the city at its best, you may never want to leave. That is precisely why Birmingham has become the biggest centre for business events outside London.

2. Connected at the heart of the UK

Located at the centre of England, the West Midlands’ connectivity is unparalleled. With roads, rail and air all connecting the region to the rest of UK, and in fact the rest of the world. Birmingham welcomes delegates in abundance year after year.


  • 400 global destinations are connected to the West Midlands by air
  • Over 143 direct routes are served by 50 airlines
  • Birmingham Airport is just 10 minutes from the city centre


  • 90% of the UK population is within a four-hour drive
  • 28 million people live within a two hour drive of Birmingham


  • Birmingham New Street is the busiest station outside London
  • High Speed 2 will reduce travel time to our capital to just 49 minutes

3. World class event facilities

In the West Midlands, we’re spoilt for choice when it comes to meeting and conference venues. Our offering is defined by choice, so whether you need easily adaptable traditional conference spaces, something designed to inspire or a space which encourages your delegates to get hands on, you’ll find it here.

We have world class event facilities – every year over 250,000 conferences and 320 exhibitions are held in the region.

The NEC is the UK’s largest exhibition venue that welcomes around 2.4 million each year. It’s connected to Birmingham Airport and only 9 minutes from Birmingham city centre. It is the centre of a network of region-wide international and UK business conference and leisure events facilities, bringing together business, science, knowledge, leisure, sport and entertainment.

International Convention Centre (ICC) Birmingham is one of Europe’s premier conference and meetings venues, offering an extensive range of first-class facilities. From small meetings for just a few people, to international conferences of several thousand delegates, the ICC Birmingham boasts 10 meeting rooms and 10 conference halls which can accommodate 3,000 delegates.

Did you know?

We’re award-winning! Birmingham is regularly voted the best regional business tourism destination in annual British Meetings & Events Industry Survey (BMEIS).

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4. Hotels

With over 121,000 bed spaces in the West Midlands, there is plenty of choice when it comes to finding accommodation. Whether you’re looking for luxury or a budget option, or location is more important than anything, there is a spectacular room waiting for you in the West Midlands.

Here, accommodation is big business so there really is near endless choice, with an incredible range of hotels available. That’s fantastic news for your spectators. After all, some will be working to a tight budget, others may be looking to splash out, while many will simply want to be close to your venue.

Find out more and use our free accommodation booking service

5. Conference Ambassador Network

The Birmingham and the West Midlands Conference Ambassador Network has been designed as a brand-new platform for the region’s greatest minds and leaders to work together in pursuit of a common goal – together we CAN contribute to our ongoing economic growth and reinforce our international reputation for excellence in academic research and business.

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6. Global innovators

Once known as the ‘workshop of the world’, Birmingham and the West Midlands  has always been  proud of its reputation as a place where things are created, and big ideas sparked. Today, the West Midlands’ diverse range of thriving sectors and entrepreneurial spirit continue to drive global innovation and change.

In the tech, creative and digital sector, we’re innovating across high growth industries including smart cities, cybersecurity and Industry 4.0. The region has fast become the UK’s largest business, finance and professional services cluster too, with world-class brands setting up in the city at our heart.

Data-driven healthcare is centred on Birmingham, where clinical testing and manufacturing thrives. Supporting our region-wide ambitions for a greener future, our low carbon sector is growing at incredible speed as Birmingham and the West Midlands is set to lead the coming Green Industrial Revolution. Advanced manufacturing builds on our historic role in the last revolution, where manufacturing made Birmingham the powerhouse of the UK. Now, innovation is the key to our growth, and our brilliant people remain the key to that innovation.

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7. Top universities

The West Midlands is a proud home to nine leading universities, so state-of-the-art academic venues and education facilities are easy to come by in the region. Expertly designed and created with large groups in mind, our academic venues offer delegates a huge variety of meeting spaces, often in the most convenient locations.

Our Higher Education providers are continually striving (and investing) to improve their academic, research and student satisfaction standings. As a result, many of our institutions are today very highly ranked – domestically and internationally - across a number of key university performance indicators.

This probably also explains why the region is home to one of the largest student populations in the UK (over 170,0000) and produces more than 58,000 graduates every year.

Did you know?

  • The West Midlands has over 100 centres of excellence

8. From fine dining to street food

Food and drink are in good supply in the West Midlands, with a host of independent restaurants, cafes and bars peppering the region. Dine at the Balti Triangle for a flavour of the Birmingham’s biggest culinary export – the Balti – or wander the stalls of some of the UK’s biggest foodie festivals to taste everything the region has to offer. There are no fewer than an astonishing 11 Michelin-starred restaurants in the region, so you’ll never be short of choice if it’s a show-stopping meal you’re looking for.

Don’t miss:

  • When it comes to Michelin-starred restaurants, Birmingham has four- Simpsons, Purnell’s, Adam’s and Opheem.

Find out more about Food & Drink on Visit Birmingham

9. Rich Heritage

There are layers of history on every street in Birmingham, and the city is incredibly proud of its industrial heritage. There are plenty of museums around the city, including the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, right in the heart of the Birmingham’s most creative community. Explore endless historic waterways, explore the life of Birmingham industrialist, Matthew Boulton at Soho House or travel back in time at the Back to Backs to see how ordinary people lived at the height of the Industrial Revolution.

Don’t miss:

  • The historic jewellery Quarter where over 40% of British jewellery is made
  • Then step on set to enter the world of the Peaky Blinders at the Black Country Living Museum.
  • Visit Shakespeare’s England, where you’ll discover live theatre courtesy of the Royal Shakespeare Company and can retrace the footsteps of the Bard himself with Shakespeare’s Birthplace Trust

10. Gateway to the UK

There are endless destinations to be discovered in the West Midlands, and there’s plenty more right on our doorstep. This is the gateway to historic Stratford, where you’ll discover live theatre courtesy of the Royal Shakespeare Company and can dive into the bard’s life with Shakespeare’s Birthplace Trust. Worcestershire and Shropshire and more are all within easy reach. 

In under an hour’s drive from Birmingham, visiting delegates will find fascinating experiences like Warwick Castle, The Black Country, Ironbridge Gorge World Heritage Site, Severn Valley Railway and rolling Cotswolds countryside too.

Did you know?

  • Birmingham has more miles of canals than Venice to explore