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The Birmingham and Midland Institute

The Birmingham & Midland Institute has been at the heart of Birmingham’s cultural life for over 150 years, originally founded by Act of Parliament in 1854 for the ‘Diffusion and Advancement of Science, Literature and Art amongst all Classes of Persons resident in Birmingham and Midland Counties’. Charles Dickens was one of its early Presidents.



During the late nineteenth century, the BMI played a leading role in the introduction of scientific and technical education in Birmingham until the state gradually took over its functions. It was thus the forerunner of many educational bodies such as the Birmingham Conservatoire. 


Located in a Grade II* listed building, the BMI has a thriving programme of cultural and educational activities, which includes a wide spectrum of arts and science lectures, exhibitions and concerts. The building is also a venue for many externally-organised events and can be booked for conferences and meetings.



The BMI has longstanding associations with a number of independent societies who use the premises for their activities and meetings. Affiliated societies have kindred interests and include the Birmingham Philatelic Society and the Birmingham and Midland Society for
Genealogy and Heraldry.


The BMI receives no public subsidy or direct revenue funding; it depends entirely on income generated through the support of members, visitors, donors, and volunteers.



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