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New Central Fire Station, Birmingham - June 2011
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Default New Central Fire Station, Birmingham - June 2011 - 14-07-2011, 23:22

I first caught site of this building last year, but it was firmly closed. Right now the yard is being used as surface car parking and a new student hall of residence tower recently proposed. I had a word with the security, he phoned his boss and I got the nod. The building is great example of civic pride in a late neo-classical style. It’s a complex mix of icons, materials and traditions that sort of exemplify its position as functional, civic, heraldic, stoic and hence slightly Victorian, but with Edwardian detailing and the odd art-deco flourish. I was on my way for an appointment and couldn’t spend anywhere near as much time as I wanted to, but here’s what I got.

History shamelessly stolen from here. Which is worth reading for a thorough social, political and architectural history of the building.

The building was designed as the New Central Fire Station for the City of Birmingham. The design was by Herbert Humphries [later Sir Herbert Humphries] and completed by Herbert Manzoni after Humphries' retirement in 1935. The building was finished by December 1935 at a cost of 157,000 and officially opened by the Duke of Kent. Contemporary accounts reflect the high degree of civic pride which the building provoked and it is described in glowing articles which spoke of its advanced technology. This new technology included lights to indicate which machines were to respond to a fire, loud speakers to identify the location of the fire and electronically controlled engine starting and door opening. It also featured the latest 'turntable escape' which was reputed to be the first of its kind in the country.

The Fire Service Headquarters was designed to house an enclosed community for the fire-fighters, their families and the senior officers. It included housing, a school room and roof top playground, and recreation rooms, with garaging for the fire engines, workshops and stores for their repair. The style is Neo-Georgian to the exterior and functional or 'Moderne' to the courtyard fronts and the tall hose tower at the eastern corner of the yard.


Main gates + tower


Courtyard + landing


Office


External stairwell to connect landings


Rooftop playground


Sprinklers


Doors


Lift


Ballroom


Tower


Courtyard


Doors

peace
NMB


photos here too
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Default 14-07-2011, 23:37

holy shit this is top stuff good work
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Default 15-07-2011, 00:54

Nice one, looks sick.
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Default 15-07-2011, 06:09

Awesome!
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Default 15-07-2011, 06:15

i really like this! well done
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Default 15-07-2011, 11:34

Thats an amazing fire station, with its own ballroom - that has to be a one off.
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Default 19-07-2011, 01:06

O, my, God, nice work bud
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