Visiting Birmingham’s New Library with Kids
For those of you who haven’t visited, the Library has been met with mixed reviews due to its contemporary exterior, however, if you have children, especially if it is a particularly wet or chilly day, the Library is well worth a visit.
Following the show, we remained in the same building (the Library and Rep are now joined as one building) and had lunch in the cafe. The food is fresh and reasonably priced and there is the opportunity for a decent coffee and cake (staple daily requirements since becoming a mum of two). The upstairs of the cafe is more spacious and quiet and so was a perfect spot to breastfeed the little one and the food is served quickly, so far, so good!
After lunch, we decided to head straight to the Children’s Section on the bottom floor. Be warned, you need to move between floors by lift when you have a push chair and most people in the Library appear to be ‘stair phobic’ so you may need to be a little insistent to get into the lift without waiting half a day!
The Children’s Section is well staffed and well resourced (toilets and changing facilities) and we spent a good half an hour reading books and people watching.
After our reading session, we explored the ground floor further and Eira and Daddy enjoyed walking round the circle pit which houses the table tennis before lounging in the fantastically comfortable and excellent hidey hole chairs.
We dragged ourselves away from the chairs and after a brief spell on the popular ‘Story Steps’ made our way further up the Library.
Now, here comes the challenge. The Library boasts several excellent vantage points from which you can gain excellent views of the city. However, getting to them is a little tricky. Of the three lifts (the middle one was broken!) only two (the middle and left hand one!) take you to the viewing platform on the top floor! Information we only gained after asking one of the Library staff! Once you manage to negotiate this challenge, you are able to gain excellent views of Birmingham, I think Eira would have happily stayed up there most of the afternoon (as would Daddy!).
We braved the lift again and this time went down to the 3rd Floor Garden Terrace. This is one of Eira’s favourite sports and despite the wind, she spent a good 20 mins running round the maze and commenting on the view! This is a great spot on a sunny day and a super place for a picnic!
Time was marching on and we needed to get back to the car park (we had parked at The Barclaycard Arena car park, a little pricey but worth it for the convenience) and headed for the M6, home in time for tea!
NB: This review has been sent in by Rachel, mum of two.
Featured Image Credit to Fotorus