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This weekend saw the first Jewellery Quarter Festival, organised to mark the transformation of what had been a rather ugly car park between the Rose Villa Tavern and the Big Peg building at the centre of JQ into Golden Square, a much nicer-looking pedestrian plaza and event space. In addition to three days of music, food and craft events at the new square itself, JQ businesses and art centres ran a doors-open weekend. Although the Quarter is, not surprisingly, famous for its concentration of jewellers and allied trades, it's also home to a lot of other decorative and artistic enterprises, many of which even local residents tend not to notice given that a lot are tucked away in converted factories down the JQ's many back streets. Given that Golden Square is about 200 metres from our new house, we've had three days of popping over to see what the latest attraction is and wandering round discovering new things about our neighbourhood.

Lots of pictures )

The JQ Festival seemed to be very popular, and all the venues we visited were seeing a fair bit of interest. It looks like there's a programme of further events for Golden Square, and with any luck the success of this year's festival may make it an annual event. All in all we're very glad we've ended up living in such an unusual and interesting area, which after this weekend we now know a little bit more about!
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Over Christmas I took advantage of a discount offer from Calumet Photographic to hire a very nice Canon 70-300 L-series lens to try out. I posted some comparison and test shots, including a few taken at Edgbaston Reservoir, not far from where we live. Since then I've been meaning to go through some of the others I took, which include rather a lot of pictures of the bane of Birmingham, i.e. our local seagull population. (Actually, I don't mind them at the reservoir; it's the way that they infest the rest of the city that drives us round the bend.)

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(While we were there a family turned up with a bag of breadcrumbs, which explains the feeding frenzy in the later pictures.)
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Really incredible sunset this evening - these are pretty much the colours we saw out the window.

Large photos )

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Simon Bradshaw

June 2017

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