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Date(s) - 08/09/2023

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The Old Crown

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Join us for an evening with Carl Chinn as he narrates the real history of Birmingham’s Oldest Pub, The Old Crown, from its Medieval roots to the present day. This event will take place at The Old Library, Birmingham, with drinks beforehand at The Old Crown, where there will be an exhibition celebrating its 655 year history for Birmingham Heritage Week.

Ticket only event – £15 per person.

Professor Carl Chinn MBE is a social historian with a national profile, writer, teacher, tour guide, and public speaker. An off-course bookmaker until 1984, he is the son and grandson of illegal bookmakers in Sparkbrook, whilst his mother’s family were factory workers in Aston. His writings and broadcasting are deeply affected by his family’s working-class background and life in the back-to-backs of Birmingham, and he believes passionately that history must be democratised because each and every person has made their mark upon history and has a story to tell

He was the expert on ITV’s ‘The Way We Were’ series, presented regular history slots on BBC Midlands Today, and has appeared as a historical expert on BBC 1’s ‘Who Do You Think You Are’ and ‘The One Show’ as well as on the BBC 2 series ‘The Victorian Slum’. Most recently he has contributed to ‘Britain’s Biggest Dig’ on BBC 2 and ‘Walking Victorian Britain’ on My5. Professor Chinn has also been interviewed on numerous Radio 4 programmes; for 19 years he had a weekly local history show on BBC WM; he wrote a weekly local history feature for the Express and Star from 2004-2016; and since 1994 he has been writing on .local history for the Birmingham Mail.

He is the author of 35 books that include studies of working-class housing, urban working-class life, poorer working-class women’s lives, manufacturing, Birmingham, the Black Country, illegal bookmaking and ethnic minorities. His latest works are Peaky Blinders: The Real Story. The true history of Birmingham’s most notorious gangs 2019, a Sunday Times number 1 bestseller; Peaky Blinders: The Legacy. The real story of Britain’s most notorious 1920s gangs 2020; and Peaky Blinders: The Aftermath: The real story behind the next generation of British gangsters 2021. He is also co-editor of Birmingham. The Workshop of the World 2016, the first major history of Birmingham since the 1970s.

Professor Chinn is a noted campaigner and played a prominent role in saving the last back to backs in Birmingham, now a National Trust Museum; in the fight to ensure the re-opening of Birmingham’s Town Hall; in the drive for a memorial to the paupers who died in Birmingham Workhouse; and in the campaign for a fitting memorial for the victims of the Blitz in Birmingham. An ardent supporter of manufacturing, Professor Chinn was a key figure in the battle to keep the Longbridge car factory open in 2001 and later supported the struggles for jobs at Alstom, HP Sauce, and Smith and Nephew.

Formerly Professor of Community History at the University of Birmingham, a unique role, and Director of the Birmingham Lives project collecting working-class memories, he is now Emeritus Professor at the University of Birmingham. As a freelance social historian, he is an animateur for history tours of Birmingham and collaborates on local history projects in several schools. These include Tudor Grange Academy Kingshurst, George Dixon Academy, Eden Academy, Ark Victoria Academy, Archbishop Ilsley Catholic School, Staffordshire University Academy Cannock, and Trinity High School Redditch, whilst at St Paul’s School for Girls, he supports 6th formers with their history coursework.

Carl Chinn was awarded the MBE in June 2001 for his services to local history and fund-raising for local charities, and he has also been involved in building homes for orphans in Romania and refurbishing a school in the Andes in Ecuador. In 2010, he was awarded a Gold Medal by the Institute of Sheet Metal Engineering for his ‘commitment, enthusiasm and support for our manufacturing heritage’. Two years later, he was presented with a special Local Heroes Award by the Birmingham Mail for championing the City and for his work in uncovering its past; and in June 2014, he was made a Master of the Open University for his work in community history.

Dress Code: None

Age Limits: N/A

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