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BBC Birmingham kicks of Digital Cities 2016 amid calls for investment

Birmingham will launch Digital Cities 2016, with a week of techie activities from March 14 to 20

Digital Cities 2016 graphic
Digital Cities 2016 graphic

Birmingham is hosting a week of digitally-focused activities – as city leaders push for a major BBC investment in the city.

Birmingham will launch Digital Cities 2016, with a week of techie activities from March 14 to 20.

Led by the BBC, the Digital Cities events in Birmingham are being supported by Creative Skillset, Channel 4 and a regional partners, aiming to share skills, knowledge and best practice with those in the creative industries, and encourage cross-sector collaboration.

It comes after the Post launched its manifesto for the BBC in the future – showing why Birmingham is the place for the state broadcaster to kick off a digital revolution.

Joe Godwin, director of BBC Birmingham, said: “Birmingham is a real hub for creative digital talent. Digital Cities is an opportunity for everyone to put their brains together and share those skills.”

More: A Birmingham BBC manifesto: Our city is the answer to your problems

Digital Cities Birmingham will see events take place across the city throughout the week, and include practical hands-on workshops, masterclasses, pop-ups and conference-style events hosted by industry experts, to help content makers develop their digital skills.

Join the Digital Cities Birmingham Twitter conversation using the hashtag #digicities.

Meanwhile, The Coroner, Father Brown and Doctors, the most popular shows made at the BBC’s Drama Village in Selly Oak, have all been recommissioned.

Will Trotter, head of daytime drama at Birmingham Drama Village, said: “I am delighted with how well audiences have taken to the shows. The Coroner is an exceptional production which has delivered on a number of levels for our daytime viewers. We’re thrilled with the audience figures and look forward to bringing more gripping stories to our BBC One viewers with the next series.

Graeme Brown: The BBC needs a digital revolution... and Birmingham is the place

"BBC Worldwide and BBC Drama Production have done a fantastic job with Father Brown. To have consistently high viewing figures year on year is phenomenal. It’s a real gem of a programme and this is highlighted by its global popularity.”

The Digital Cities Birmingham schedule

March 14: Launch event at BBC Birmingham HQ in The Mailbox.

March 15: Digital arts project; The Space will be delivering a day of showcases in partnership with BBC Academy to the city’s arts sector.

March 16: #RethinkMedia conference organised by Birmingham City University will put a spotlight on emerging trends, up-and-coming players and fresh thinking to facilitate new ideas and approaches with speakers from the BBC, Google and many more.

March 17: The BBC Academy presents a day of free workshops and hands-on experiences, at BBC Birmingham. An opportunity to get to grips with digital storytelling, short form content making and connecting with the online audience.

March 18: Creative Skillset, in partnership with Innovation Birmingham, hold a day of activities exploring developments in the games industry, and how other creative industries can learn from games and gamification.

March 19 and 20: Under-19s can join Coding Brum at BBC Birmingham for a weekend of creating apps and websites in an industry expert-led fun hack.

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