Things To Do In The Jewellery Quarter

Birmingham is a city of deceptive depth and culture with much more to offer than people might first realise. Aside from having a plethora of historic buildings and landmarks, the UK’s second city also has a commitment to the arts and its own specific heritage. This makes the midland’s top city a beacon that attracts people from far and wide. But what is on offer for couples? While Birmingham might not be Paris it does have one ace up its sleeve. The Jewellery Quarter. This area is unlike anywhere else in the rest of the United Kingdom, bringing together heritage, history, landmarks, romance and shopping to provide a unique experience. It is the largest collection of jewellery shops in the country making it the hub of diamonds, gems and precious metals. If you are wanting somewhere to choose a ring to honour and solidify your commitments to your partner, then this could well be the best place to come!

But the Jewellery Quarter Birmingham should be about much more than simply choosing a ring. With all of these diamond shops and the investment that engagement and wedding wings represent, you may want to spend more than one night here. Fortunately, Birmingham has more than enough to keep you entertained, no matter who you are. From the Sea Life Centre to the Science museum you can learn, while there are landmarks such as Stoneleigh Abbey, Coventry Cathedral, a network of operating canals, Winterbourne House and Garden and much more. In the Quarter itself you will find two very important museums – The Museum of the Quarter and the Pen Room. We are also home to quite a few art galleries and sport around 200 listed historic buildings! By coming to our UK jewellers you will access an entire culture of gemological history and tradition.

Places To Stay

Birmingham also has a great range of romantic hotels that will be the perfect complement to your time spent in the Quarter. Deciding on the right ring or piece of jewellery can take time and you will naturally want to weigh up the options, so we have many different types of hotels from luxury options to budget, from serviced apartments to spas.

If luxury is your aim, then the Malmaison Hotel is a great suggestion. It is built inside a converted Royal Mail sorting office and is one of the centres of activity within the city. If you want the best of the best, then this is the place to come, particularly since they offer some of the most opulent luxury executive suites in the country.

For those on a relaxation kick, The Elms Hotel and Spa is just waiting to help you unwind. Set in remarkable grounds the Queen Anne Mansion looks like the set of an expensive period drama with beautiful ivy-covered walls as well as extravagantly decorated rooms. This spa is in the heart of Worcestershire and commands an amazing view over the Teme Valley.

5 Things to Think About When Choosing Engagement Jewellery

Shopping for engagement jewellery could send you nicely into the 75% of men who buy their prospective brides an engagement ring, typically a diamond. But this is the modern age of civil marriages, beach weddings, second weddings and commitment ceremonies!
Our point being that when it comes to diamonds, here in the Birmingham Jewellery Quarter we’ve got plenty of tips for the modern marrying couple, whatever their situation.

1. What kind of jewellery?
There is no longer a hard and fast rule about diamond engagement rings. For reasons of style, lifestyle, practicality and cost, there’s no need to feel limited by the traditional choice of a diamond engagement ring.
Most jewellery shops like our jewellers in Birmingham are accustomed to buyers looking for something a little different when it comes to engagement jewellery. A diamond pendent, a tennis bracelet, cocktail ring, stud earrings – there’s plenty of choice and nothing that says you shouldn’t go with whatever suits your intended best.
2. Does it need to be more practical or just decorative?
The idea of most engagement jewellery is that it be worn most of the time, not just dug out for special occasions. And that means thinking, to a degree, practically. Does the wearer have a job that makes finger jewellery highly impractical? Or quite the opposite – is their lifestyle perfectly suited to a great big exquisite diamond ring?
3. What kind of style statement should the piece make?
For many, women especially, the style of their engagement jewellery probably needs to be quite dexterous. For example, as appropriate in the workplace as on the beach. But the key is to make sure the right statement is made, e.g. is it all about a single, simple diamond to be worn with lots of other gems and jewellery pieces, or would they prefer a magnificent, eye-catching piece of engagement jewellery to be worn as a bold statement piece all its own?
4. Does it need to match other gems and precious metals?
We can change settings and alter jewellery to make it fit in with your intended’s existing jewellery collection if needs be. For example, having an engagement ring set on rose gold when all other pieces of jewellery are white gold can be frustrating for the wearer.
Choosing the right precious metal, in particular, can be difficult for a jewellery novice, so a little digging through existing pieces can be helpful. And don’t worry, our experts are quite adept at translating comments like “I think most of her rings are a proper gold-y gold. You know, the yellow one.”
5. Can you answer any of the questions above?
It not, it’s probably time to call in a little help! There’s nothing wrong with calling in reinforcements for a day out at the Jewellery Quarter with our experts.
Asking friends or family to lend a helping hand could help avoid making the wrong choice. But even wrong choices can be rectified with another trip to see us!

No. 1 For British Jewellery

At the heart of Birmingham lies a cultural heart that many outside of the city do not even realise exists. There is the typical plethora of restaurants, bars and clubs that populate most city centres (though Birmingham’s are better, naturally!) but there is also a healthy selection of art galleries and museums. What other cities certainly do not have is anything that compares with the Jewellery Quarter. If you are looking for an altogether more cultural experience when buying jewellery, then Birmingham is the best place in the country to come. And who wouldn’t want something more meaningful? Jewellery itself is steeped in history, culture and tradition – the very fact you are buying it is testament to this! So why not make a day of your jewellery shopping and truly explore the cultural wonders that the UK’s second city has to offer?

The Centre Of Jewellery

Birmingham jewellers know of the rich history the Quarter has. This is why we have our very own Museum of the Jewellery Quarter. The many jewellery shops Birmingham boasts date back well into Victorian times, most notably along Vyse Street. Today we produce as much as 40% of the UK’s entire jewellery as well as being the second largest concentration of jewellery shops in the whole of Europe. With 3000 people living in this 1 square kilometre area, the Quarter is a thriving place that has an incredible amount of heritage and history. Certainly, if you are looking for jewellery, then this is the UK’s hub.

There is a multitude of different types of shops all producing jewellery here, so no matter what you are looking for you will find it! We have a number of shops that specialise in diamonds, producing some of the most perfect stones you will ever see. Given that there are so many shops in such a tight area, the high competition ensures prices are about as good as you are going to get them. Each shop is also fully accredited and will issue you with a certificate to prove the authenticity of the diamond. All you need to do is find that one diamond that takes your breath away.

There are also shops specialising in precious metals such as gold as well as those that deal almost exclusively in gemstones such as emerald, jade, onyx, sapphire, amber and more. The country’s best jewellery specific shops are found here too such as watch sellers, ring specialists, earrings and more. If you are looking to make essential repairs, we can take care of you and your jewellery, particularly when it comes to watches.

Tourist Sites

This special area also has its extra special highlights. The Chamberlain Clock tower stands elegantly at the junction of all of the main Quarter streets. It has stood since 1903 and has been recently restored to its natural state. It is from this clock that you will explore the area and hopefully find the perfect piece of jewellery for you. There is also the Big Peg, the Pen Room Museum, the RBSA Gallery, St Paul’s Gallery and numerous bars.

A national treasure

If you want to see the beating heart of the UK’s jewellery industry, it’s well worthwhile taking a trip to the Jewellery Quarter in Birmingham. This has been described by English Heritage as a “national treasure” and a “place of unique character”.

The organisation went on to note that it represents a “particular combination of structures associated with jewellery and metalworking which does not seem to exist anywhere else in the world”.

Spoiled for choice

The Birmingham Jewellery Quarter is positively brimming with superb jewellers selling all manner of gleaming goodies, so if you make the trip to England’s second city, you’ll be spoiled for choice.

There are more than 800 businesses operating in the area, including 100 specialist retailers and 50 contemporary designer makers.

Make sure you clear your diary

When you plan your trip, make sure you give yourself plenty of time. There are no fewer than 100 stores for you to explore containing a mixture of classic jewels, modern items and handcrafted jewellery. Also, whether you’re keen to splash out on exclusive and expensive gems or want to bag yourself a bargain, you’ll be able to find plenty of products that fit the bill.

Of course, even the most enthusiastic shoppers need a break from time to time and you can rest assured that as well as the fabulous array of jewellers, there are also plenty of bars, restaurants and cafes for you to refresh and recharge in.

In addition, you can check out some of the galleries, museums and antique shops in the area.

The old and the new

Jewellery makers have operated in the district for over two centuries and they continue to do so in great numbers. Despite rising property values and new developments, jewellery is still the main player in this part of the city.

Indeed, the area is said to contain the highest concentration of dedicated jewellers in Europe. Around a third of the jewellery made in the UK comes from within one mile of Birmingham city centre.

Meanwhile, a renovated 1960s tower block named The Big Peg is now home to several hundred small arts and jewellery businesses.

Getting there

Before you set off on your trip to this iconic district, you’ll need to think about your transport options. It’s easy to get to the area by car and you might favour this option for its convenience. However, it’s important to remember that you’ll have to find parking when you arrive.

If you’d rather travel by train, it’s worth noting that the area is served by a Jewellery Quarter station, which is a co-joined stop on both the Midland Metro and the main rail line into Birmingham Snow Hill station.

Who will you take?

It’s great to wander around these shops with pals, but if you fancy a romantic weekend, why not take your other half? Whoever you go with, you might end up with some fabulous new additions to your jewellery collection and you should have a great time too!

New Parking Sensors Piloted in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter

Anyone looking for jewellers in Birmingham inevitably ends up making a beeline for the city’s Jewellery Quarter, home for the last two centuries to some of the most highly skilled and talented jewellers and goldsmiths in the world.

It’s still very much the UK’s industry hub, and these days this part of town also offers some of Birmingham’s top museums, restaurants, bars and art galleries, alongside hundreds of retailers and designers.

Now life for those visiting the area is set to become easier, with the launch this year of the pilot of a street parking scheme to help drivers find somewhere to leave their car locally.

In chosen streets of the Birmingham Jewellery Quarter, around 200 sensors have been embedded, designed to identify the presence of a parked vehicle. Data can then be offered via a Smartphone app or website so motorists know where they can find a space.

The scheme is likely to be extended to the streets of the neighbouring Colmore Business District, and the firm organising the pilot is confident both local businesses and visitors will feel the benefit.

A statement from the city council’s highways partner commented: “Everyone has at some point found themselves in an unfamiliar area of town, unsure of where they might find somewhere to park and having to go around in circles until they can find a spot.

“We hope that this trial will give us some indication of how these sensors can successfully be used and the benefits they hold for the city.

“By using the data our sensors gather, motorists can reduce how long they spend hunting for that elusive space, and fuel wasted at the same time, as they will be able to find out where there are pockets of availability.”

The Jewellery Quarter Development Trust agreed: “It can be frustrating to waste time looking for a parking bay, and we think this initiative will help to lessen some of the stress that can come with trying to park in the city centre.”

The Jewellery Quarter is just five minutes’ drive from the city centre, and probably the best way into the district is along the A457 or along Great Hampton Street. (There are also plenty of buses, or you could walk from the centre of town.)

Look online for more information about where to park, and further details of local facilities.

With so much going on in the area, and so many places to eat, drink, relax and be entertained, you really can make a day out of your visit here, even if you aren’t on a particular jewellery buying mission. The Jewellery Quarter, our original website for the area, is packed with info so you can plan your visit.

But if you are looking for a particular item, such as a wedding or engagement ring, it makes sense to arm yourself with as much information as you can before you start shopping, The website of a reputable retailer such as Marlow’s Diamonds makes an excellent starting point.

Finding special gems in the Birmingham Jewellery Quarter

You might have lots of items of jewellery, but when you’re looking for really special gems, it’s worth making a little extra effort. To benefit from a superb selection of products, you can take a trip to the Birmingham Jewellery Quarter.

This area is filled with top-quality jewellery makers and shops and you can peruse them at your leisure. Whether you’re looking for an engagement ring, wedding ring or anything else, this is the go-to destination.

An illustrious past

It’s no wonder this part of Birmingham enjoys a reputation as being a mecca for jewellery lovers. After all, for more than 200 years, it has been home to some of the world’s most highly skilled goldsmiths and jewellery makers.

By 1861, more than 7,000 people were engaged in jewellery making in the area and, traditionally, the tradesmen worked from home or in small workshops. However, this all this changed as shops began to open to the public.

The here and now

Most of the retail outlets have sprung up since the 1970s and there are now lots to choose from. Regardless of the style of product you’re after, you won’t struggle to find it. Now when you arrive in the Jewellery Quarter you’ll benefit from plenty of shopping opportunities. Nowhere else can you find such an abundance of outlets catering to jewellery lovers’ every need.

Meanwhile, as well as taking a peak at the stunning variety of rings, necklaces and other items available, you can absorb the atmosphere of this bustling and vibrant part of Birmingham.

Choosing trinkets in this part of the UK is a real treat in itself and it can be a memorable experience.

Beyond the bling

Of course, the Quarter doesn’t only boast jewellers. Once you’re all shopped out and you fancy doing something else, you can take advantage of some of Birmingham’s best art galleries, museums, restaurants and bars.

Like many visitors, you might opt to make a real trip of it and stay for a weekend. You won’t struggle to find suitable accommodation and then you can really relax after perusing the impressive selection of jewels on offer. The great thing is, located in the heart of the country, Birmingham is easy to get to whether you’re travelling by car or public transport.


You might decide that this part of Birmingham would make a fantastic romantic trip. Imagine the look on your other half’s face if you told her you were treating her to a weekend away and she would be able to select a gorgeous piece of jewellery as the icing on the cake. This is a definite brownie point earner!

After your shopping trip, you could head to a fancy restaurant for a bite to eat and then get a night cap in a plush bar.


Meanwhile, thanks to the abundance of skills available, the Jewellery Quarter is the perfect place to get repairs done. Whether you’re looking to fix a favourite old watch, bracelet or something else, you can visit the best jewellers in the UK for help.

Diamonds Of The Jewellery Quarter

The Jewellery Quarter in Birmingham is the spiritual home of diamonds in the United Kingdom. This is literally the jewel of Birmingham, a tourist attraction in its own right and the place to come if you are looking for a gem of a gemstone. There are many reasons to seek out jewellery shops in Birmingham, but to be truly savvy one must undertake a bit of research first. Fortunately, there is a simple rule to follow that can allow you to spot the obvious defects in diamonds, and ensure that your not sold a zirconia instead of a natural diamond. The 4 Cs are your ticket to spotting a diamond in the rough!

Reputation And Certification

First, you must ensure that your diamond comes with documentation. Every diamond should be standardised and each shop that you find in the Jewellery Quarter will provide certificates with purchases. This will most likely come from the GIA (Gemological Institute Of America) or the IGI (International Gemological Institute). Both of these organisations independently affirm that the gem you are holding is what the seller says it is and is accordingly worth the asking price.

The 4 Cs

Carat, Cut, Clarity and Colour. These are the four areas you will need to know about in order to truly understand why a diamond is special. It is important to realise that the diamond is a naturally occurring stone that is by the processes that formed it, imperfect. This does not mean that diamonds cannot be very perfect, but the more perfect they are, the more they cost. Internal defects which can inhibit light performance are called inclusions and comes under the broad heading of Clarity. Some inclusions can be hidden by setting the diamond properly, but generally, the majority of trustworthy diamonds won’t have visible issues.

Colour is a very important part of the diamond, since it have a large impact on the pricing. The engagement rings Birmingham has to offer, for instance, typically make use of white diamonds (clear) for that classic crystal look. Coloured diamonds such as those that are pink, green and blue can fetch huge sums of money because of their rarity, while those that are yellow are not considered to be worth as much. The colour is created when certain other elements are present when the diamond was formed.

Cut is the shape of the diamond. Round brilliant cut is the typical cut for a diamond but others are common as well. The so-called fancy-cut diamonds include the princess, cushion, heart, pear, marquise radiant, emerald and oval. The jewellery shops Birmingham boasts will offer a wide variety possibly including some other rarer cuts as well.

Carat is the weight measurement for the mass of the diamond. Be aware that this means that some diamonds could be denser and weigh more, even though they are technically the same size. 1 Carat is typically akin to 200 milligrams and as you would imagine, the more carats, the more the diamond is going to cost. Large diamonds are quite rare and also subject to high demand which inflates their price a great deal.

Plenty to see and do in the Jewellery Quarter

When you’re on the lookout for diamond jewellery, there’s really only one place to go and that’s the Birmingham Jewellery Quarter. For more than two centuries, it has been home to some of the world’s most highly skilled jewellery makers and goldsmiths.

Meanwhile, since the opening of a range of retail outlets in the 1970s and in subsequent decades, it has become a mecca for consumers hunting for beautiful gems.

Plenty of shops

If you’re to find your ideal rings, bracelets and other products, it’s important that you have enough choice and you’ll certainly not be stuck for options in this bejewelled area of Birmingham. Whether you want an engagement ring, some beautiful earrings or anything else, you can peruse a vast array of options in a range of different jewellery shops.

Seeing the items first hand means you can get a completely accurate idea of what they look and feel like, meaning the products you end up with will be perfect for you.

Make a real trip of it

However, it’s not only the shops that stand out in the Jewellery Quarter. If you travel to this part of the city, you’ll also be able to take advantage of lots of other attractions. This is great if you’re heading to the area with your friends or partner.

You can indulge in the ultimate retail therapy by purchasing fabulous jewellery and then relax and enjoy the sights and sounds of the quarter. Ideally, you’ll be able to stay over in one of the local hotels so you can sample the quarter by day and by night.

Feeling hungry?

When you get peckish, you can take your pick from a range of great eateries. For example, the Rectory Bar & Restaurant is a superb place to unwind and get your fill of tasty grub, all washed down with beverages of your choice. Located in St Paul’s Square, it overlooks St Paul’s Church and if stylish, modern surroundings are what you’re after, this could be the place for you.

Meanwhile, for a taste of something more exotic, Henry’s Cantonese Restaurant might be ideal. This eatery serves delicious Chinese cuisine in authentic oriental surroundings and has been popular since opening 20 years ago.

Some night life

There are also plenty of bars for you to check out, including The Jam House and The Red Lion. The former venue is atmospheric and could be perfect if you fancy some live music, particularly of the funk or jazz variety. Meanwhile, the latter is more traditional in feel and offers entertainment including pub quizzes and comedy clubs.

A little culture

It would be a shame to visit the Birmingham Jewellery Quarter without checking out some of the museums and art galleries on offer. The Royal Birmingham Society of Artists Gallery is located off St Paul’s Square and it offers a range of exhibitions, workshops and demonstrations. Meanwhile, St Paul’s Gallery on Northwood Street specialises in music-related artwork and artefacts.

The Museum of the Jewellery Quarter is also well worth a look and you can enjoy a guided tour around a real jewellery factory that’s little changed since the early part of the last century.

Visit Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter this Christmas

The cosmopolitan Jewellery Quarter in Birmingham is the perfect haunt for all those looking to purchase a beautiful gift for a loved one this Christmas. Offering some of the best jewellers in the country and exquisite items that are sure to make any recipient smile, it’s the perfect place to visit to pick a stunning gift for that special someone.

Whether you’re looking for a diamond engagement ring, a modern wristwatch or a beautiful pair of earrings, you’re sure to find exactly what you’re looking for at the Jewellery Quarter. Most of the jewellers have been trading for decades upon decades in the historic centre, and are dedicated to presenting their customers with the finest items on the market.

Marlow’s Diamonds is a popular jeweller in the Jewellery Quarter as they specialise in an array of certified diamond jewellery, including engagement rings, wedding rings, eternity rings and more.

For repairs, head to F Meeks & Co as they offer full watch repairs, including battery replacements, strap alterations and restoration services.

As well as being the home to the finest goldsmiths and jewellery makers in the world, Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter also offers an array of leisure and shopping facilities. For example, you can treat yourself to a delicious meal at Pasta di Piazza in St Paul’s Square, enjoy a well earned drink at chilled Apres bar and even get your hair cut at Harris & Gibb’s hairdressers.

The Jewellery Quarter is the perfect place for a relaxed and enjoyable shopping experience this festive season. The centre’s Christmas lights will really help you get into the spirit of the season, and you’ll be spoilt for choice with the array of jewellers, restaurants and bars on offer.

The Jewellery Quarter is famous across the country for its renowned jewellery and metalworking heritage. So, if you want to brush up on your knowledge of the area then you should go to the Museum of the Jewellery Quarter. Here you’ll receive a guided tour of the centre and witness demonstrations of jewellery making skills. You’ll find out how it all started, how it evolved and hear about some of the longest running jewellers in the Quarter. You’ll also realise that not much has changed, as the working practices, equipment and decor is quite similar to many years ago.

So, whether you’re looking for a gift for your girlfriend, wife, boyfriend, Dad, Mum, brother or best friend, make sure you visit the array of jewellery shops in Birmingham at the Jewellery Quarter. You’ll be glad you did.

New Group Fighting for Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter

A new heritage group set up this autumn will work to keep at bay concerns that historic buildings and traditional skills may be lost from the famous, 300-year-old Birmingham Jewellery Quarter.

Last year, English Heritage placed the area on its Conservation Areas at Risk list as being of “medium” vulnerability. However, in the list published in October for 2012, the jewellers district came off the list completely. Now the new group will campaign to make sure it stays that way.

Its leader, Marie Haddleton, who also edits a local magazine, and has worked in the area for some three decades, established Jewellery Quarter Heritage, and aims to work closely in conjunction with Birmingham City Council to create “affordable” workspace, attract new businesses to the district, and oversee the conversion of empty buildings back in to workshops.

She explained that the council had reduced its conservation officers to just a couple of them, while the Jewellery Quarter Regeneration Partnership Land and Property Group has also been lost.

Funds for the new group, which will have “supporters” rather than members, will come from voluntary donations.

The group is also campaigning for traditional jewellery making skills to be kept in the quarter.

Haddleton explained: “Technology has meant a change to some of these skills, inevitably. But the future of the jewellery industry will depend on having a fresh influx of designer-makers.

“Although the council does provide some affordable workshops for up to a year, the problem is what happens after that.

“Most local schemes for refurbishment are for offices or homes, and while there’s a lot of talk about ‘affordable housing’, workshops at good prices are never mentioned. But jewellery designers do not need a lot of space, only a small area with a workbench and basin, water and gas.

“Having a mixture of workshops and residential spaces doesn’t always work. We keep an eye on the planning applications coming in to check that they are in accordance with the management plan.”

Visit The Quarter!

The Quarter is the original website for Birmingham’s jewellery quarter, complete with a history of this district, in the heart of one of the UK’s most important cities.

You can also get all the travel information you need, along with a detailed map, and a lowdown on precious metals, diamonds and other gemstones.

As well as plenty of places to buy jewellery, this part of Birmingham is also full of places to eat and drink, as well as galleries and museums. There’s even a School of Jewellery! So you’ll have no shortage of opportunities to relax and celebrate after buying, say, a diamond engagement ring.

While you’re in the Quarter, either virtually or literally, check out Marlow’s Diamonds, for a full range of engagement, wedding, eternity and multi-stone rings, along with a selection of other jewellery.

We’ve been trading for more than three generations and deal only in diamonds of the finest cuts, colour and clarity. All come with independent certificates from globally recognised bodies. Learn more online.