News & blog

Get the lowdown on all of the latest news and activities for My Route.

10th February 2014

My Route gets the green light!

Thanks to a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of £226,300, Sampad South Asian arts is delighted to announce that it’s full steam ahead for My Route, an 18-month project researching the history of the communities that live along the Road between Sparkbrook and Hall Green.

‘My Route’ will start with a wide-ranging investigation covering how the various lifestyles, languages, religions, cuisines, economic activities and generations mesh together to create a vibrant, ethnically diverse city quarter.

Volunteers, including young people, from among the various ethnic groups will be trained to interview residents to capture their stories about settling in the area, their customs and traditions. Meanwhile, the University of Birmingham and a group of young people from the Concord Youth Centre, Sparkbrook, will help to create an online interactive map detailing the mass of community heritage information gathered.

Other results of the project will include a month-long outdoor exhibition trail with images and sound recordings installed outside specific buildings along Stratford Road; an indoor exhibition at a local venue; a book will be published containing historic facts, photographs and poems featuring the area’s communities; and local taxi drivers will be recruited to deliver a series of heritage ‘taxi tours’ around the area including an opportunity for visitors to sample local Balti cuisine in the area where Birmingham’s first Balti dish was created in 1977.

The information collected during the project will be stored for future reference in Birmingham City Archives. Education packs will also be produced to enable local schools to utilise the area’s heritage information in classroom projects.

Piali Ray OBE, Director of Sampad says:

“We are delighted to have secured the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund for the ‘My Route’ project, which will enable us to explore the changing history of the people, landscape and culture along Stratford Rd, from the 1940s to the present day. We’re looking forward to working closely with local communities in the area to create a legacy of digitally captured stories and published material that will remain as a valuable resource for the city.”

Reyahn King, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund West Midlands, says:

“This wide-ranging project will get members of the local community involved in researching and understanding better their individual and collective heritages as well as presenting the fruits of their research in imaginative and engaging ways.” 

For further information about My Route, please contact Sampad on 0121 446 3260 or email

014 sampad My Route Stratford Road - by Jas Sansi


One Response to “My Route gets the green light!”

  1. andy munro

    If people are going to sample a Balti then make sure it’s the genuine article. On the Stratford Road route, it has to be Shahi Nan Kebab House..the chef used to be in the Pakistani navy so he ‘knows his onions’!


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