A glimpse of Birmingham

Birmingham. A great place to visit – and to host an event

Birmingham is a world-class hub of culture, fine cuisine and contemporary living. It is also the UK’s second largest city. Just over an hour from London and a short train journey to Birmingham International Airport, the West Midlands region is a perfect location to host SportAccord. Around 134 million visitors are welcomed to the region each year.

Birmingham a world-class centre of sport

Home to both a professional football club, a premiership rugby union team (and also laying claim to being the inventor of the game), championship golf courses, international cricket, athletics and tennis – sport is very much part of Birmingham’s DNA.

In 2022, the city warmly welcomed 6,500 athletes from 70 countries who took part in 280 events that made up the Birmingham Commonwealth Games – and probably altered its DNA forever.

Experience Birmingham on the go!

Soak up the atmosphere in this compact and accessible city, where the art of noticing soon becomes a cultural game. There is much to enjoy, often in plain sight. Birmingham has something for everyone.

A modern walkable city, meander through the beautiful Squares linking the cultural highlights together as you move between your official hotel to the International Convention Centre (ICC), the SportAccord venue – to take part in the World Sport & Business Summit.

Heritage, history and hobbits!

A city of legends, inventions and stunning architecture, delegates can revel in the dizzying heights of Birmingham. Look up and marvel at Birmingham’s breathtaking buildings, many of which have a cultural purpose. The Town Hall, a jewel in the city’s crown, made its debut as a rock and pop venue in the late fifties and sixties. Buddy Holly, The Rolling Stones, Black Sabbath and numerous other bands appeared there – now it is home to the Birmingham Symphony Orchestra.

Visit the Ikon Gallery, a stunning building filled with modern art; or Europe’s largest Library housing a world-class collection of rare books – including the largest Shakespeare collection. Birmingham and the West Midlands region is home to 60 galleries and museums.

Birmingham was the heart of British manufacturing and is still involved in manufacturing today. The National Motorcycle Museum in Birmingham is a treasure trove of British motorcycle manufacturing, from its inception to the present day.

Take a walk along the waterways in the heart of the city: “They say there are more canals then Venice,” our President noted with a smile! Enjoy the canal café vibe, sit and ponder the inspiration behind The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, created by West Midlands resident JR Tolkien.

After a busy day at SportAccord, head over to the city’s majestic landmark, the Grand Hotel Birmingham – and join colleagues at the ‘After Hours’ bar for refreshments. This is the official Headquarters hotel for the 18th edition of SportAccord. Opened by Isaac Horton back in 1879 to designs by Thomson Plevins, the grande-dame hotel recently underwent a £50 million restoration. Since re-opening its doors, it is now a hub for city meetings, networking, and events which take place in the breathtaking Grand Ballroom .

Step outside the city

Urban landscapes compete with spectacular scenery right on Birmingham city’s doorstep. Venture outside when SportAccord draws to a close, and visit the characterful villages scattering the rolling green countryside.  Kinesis – ‘movement’ a familiar term in sport, can be linked to aesthesis otherwise known as ‘perception’. Stitching together glimpses of the Birmingham region – kinaesthetically – will take the delegate experience to newer heights. What makes a city beautiful is not just the sum of its parts – as iconic as they may be.

SportAccord President Ivo Ferriani summed it Birmingham perfectly: “A city of inventions, iconic landmarks and firsts, Birmingham’s rich tapestry of history, heritage and culture will provide a unique delegate experience for everyone. It is a brilliant Host City for SportAccord.