If you’re considering venturing into higher education, it’s likely that one of your biggest dilemmas will be where to study. At Arden, we believe that Birmingham is one of the best places in the UK to live and study. Want to know why? Then read on…

1. Live the city lifestyle at an affordable price

The city lifestyle on offer in London appeals to most, but often feels out of reach thanks to extortionate rent costs and an above average cost of living. If you catch yourself wishing you could afford to live and study in London, try considering Birmingham instead.

Birmingham is vibrant, diverse, and can give you just as good a lifestyle as London can – better, in fact, because your pounds will stretch a lot further in the Midlands than they would in the Big Smoke!

When it comes to entertainment, Birmingham has it all: theatre, museums, bars, clubs, music venues, restaurants, shops and more. There’s certainly enough to keep you occupied in your free time.

2. Study in the UK’s largest public library

If you’re ever in need of learning resources, you won’t have far to look. The Library of Birmingham - located next to the City Centre Gardens – is thought to be the biggest public library in the UK and the largest regional library in Europe.

As well as housing a huge collection of books, The Library of Birmingham holds a number of events that are incredibly useful for students, including workshops on CV writing, interview techniques and getting to grips with business.

The library is also a great space for anyone interested in the arts – it frequently holds events and exhibitions relating to theatre and performance, photography, poetry and creative writing.

3. Unwind in one of the many green spaces

If you’re looking to unwind after a few hours of studying, Birmingham has almost 600 parks and outdoor spaces to choose from; this is said to be the most of any European city of a similar size.

It’s proven that green space generally has a positive effect on quality of life, and that frequently spending time outdoors can improve mental health, making one of Birmingham’s many open spaces the perfect place to escape to if you’re having a stressful day. Cannon Hill and King’s Heath are two of the most popular parks, but if you feel like exploring what else the city has to offer, try Swanshurst, Fox Hollies or Sandwell Valley.

4. Easy access to many more amazing places

If you enjoy exploring what Birmingham has to offer, there are plenty of other places in the UK that are great to visit and, as Birmingham is so central, many are easily reachable by public transport.

To give you an idea, here are some popular destinations from around the UK and the approximate amount of time it takes to reach them by train from Birmingham.

  • Liverpool – 1 hour 35 minutes
  • London – 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Oxford – 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Stratford-upon-Avon – 45 minutes
  • Edinburgh – 4 hours (1 hour by plane)
  • Bath – 1 hour 50 minutes
  • 5. Plenty of career opportunities after graduation

    When the time comes for you to start your job search, Birmingham and the surrounding areas have a great deal of opportunities to offer. With Birmingham being the country’s second capital city, there are lots of big-name companies with offices there, many of which have graduate positions available.

    The biggest employers in the West Midlands span industries such as automotive, banking, food and IT. This makes Birmingham a great place to kick start your career and make that all-important first step into whichever industry it is you’d like to work in.

    6. If all else fails to convince you – chocolate!

    As if you needed any more reasons to choose Birmingham as your study location, it’s the home to chocolate giant, Cadbury.

    Cadbury World is located in Bournville, just 5 miles out of the city centre. Here, you can learn about chocolate manufacturing, packaging and advertising, and buy yourself a ton of tasty treats – you’ll probably deserve it after all those essays you’ll have to write!

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