An introduction to garden history in 10 objects

Interested in historic designed landscapes and their history? Want to find out more about the plans to restore Joseph Chamberlain’s gardens at Highbury and hear new insights into Shakespeare and Percy Thrower’s gardening legacies? All this in one day including lunch and refreshments, expert speakers, a guided tour and hands on activities.

Wednesday 15th November 2017 at Highbury
9.45am – 4pm
Cost: £32 including lunch and £12 for NUS inc. VAT

Book online by clicking here

For more information and to view the day’s programme, click here

Heritage Open Day 2017 – Sunday 10th September 11am-4pm

Open Day picture advert

We are very excited as we are now only one week from our second Heritage Open day. This year we will focus on the Historic Grounds of Highbury and will have tours throughout the day. We are open from 11am until 4pm.

You can download a PDF programme of the day HERE:

Highbury Map & Programme 2017 FINAL DOWNLOADABLE

The house will be open too and will be self guided. Never seen Chamberlain’s ornate library? Then get yourself along to our open day!

Tours this year are:
‘Between The Oaks’ 11.30am & 1.30pm
‘Chamberlain’s Birds’ 2.30pm
‘Wild Highbury’ 12.30pm.

There will be lots on to entertain all ages so drop in between 11am and 4pm.

At the House:

How to book tours of the gardens & collect self guided tour maps.
History Film about Joseph Chamberlain
Information stalls, including Chamberlain Memorabilia
Lawn games
Historic Bicycles
Meet the Trustees
Meet the Beekeepers
Refreshments and facilities.

At the Orchard there will be:
Orchard Archeological Dig & Nature Bingo
Four Seasons Treasure hunt

At the Apiary:
Beekeeping demonstrations (enclosed hive).

You can download a PDF programme of the day HERE:

Highbury Map & Programme 2017 FINAL DOWNLOADABLE

Volunteers Needed for Heritage Open Day 2017

HOD Volunteer Advert
Volunteers Needed!

Highbury Heritage Open Day, Sunday 10th September

Find out more about one of Birmingham’s most famous leaders Joseph Chamberlain.

Are you looking for a brand new volunteering opportunity? If so, Joseph Chamberlain’s Family home, Highbury, is taking part in Heritage Open Days again building on the success of last year.

Come and help run an historic day for an historic piece of Birmingham’s civic, architectural and political history.

The new Chamberlain Highbury Trust, which will be undertaking a major restoration of the house and gardens, needs volunteers to help with meeting and greeting, directing and assisting visitors, and running activities during the open day.

Morning and afternoon sessions available.


We are running a volunteer briefing on Wednesday 23rd August at 6pm at Highbury.

Please contact Lorraine Kenny for more info: Tel: 07435234239

Stakeholder Open Event

The Chamberlain Highbury Trust invite you to meet the team of specialists who are involved in the initial stage of the repair and restoration project of the Highbury Estate.

We are preparing to apply for a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of just under £5 million in March. In the application, we will submit an outline of what we intend to do, supported by various specialist studies and reports which demonstrate the viability and value of the project.

Join us any time from between 4pm and 7pm where you can chat to the team and learn about the key outline proposals and studies which have been developed over the last few months.

Drop in for half an hour or stay as long as you want. Light refreshments will be provided. At the event, you’ll be able to meet:

  • Project Manager: Jeremy Stone (Greenwoods)
  • Quantity Surveyor: Peter Grosvenor (Greenwoods)
  • Lead Architect: Niall Phillips (Purcell)
  • Architect: Clare Phillips (Purcell)
  • Landscape Architect: Andy Cottage (Liz Lake Associates)
  • Exhibition Designer: Richard Houghton (HKD)
  • Activity Planner: Kate Measures (Heritage Insider)
  • Business Planner: Lucy McCall (DCA Consultants)
  • Business Planner: David Clarke (DCA Consultants)

We look forward to seeing you soon,

The Chamberlain Highbury Trust.

City leaders met at Highbury in preparation to Brexit

Leaders from the UK’s core cities met on 27th January at Highbury Hall, Chamberlain’s former home, to discuss how cities could respond to the Brexit vote.

Core Cites UK is made up of Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham and Sheffield, and together they represent a quarter of the UK economy.

Following the meeting, Core Cities UK chair and leader of Leeds City Council, Judith Blake, said that cities needed powers to replicate Chamberlain’s revolutionary work.

As mayor of Birmingham from 1873 to 1876, Chamberlain undertook a series of improvements to the city, including building schools, swimming pools and libraries, and improving utilities.

“Post Brexit, our cities will be more important than ever,” Blake said. “We have come together in Birmingham to remind the government that our cities will be key to UK success in the future. It is only by giving more power to place that we can grow our country’s productivity and create real economic growth that means no-one is left behind.”

The group has previously called for additional authority for cities, including greater fiscal powers and the introduction of community budgets for public spending.

“It is fitting that our meeting today took place at Highbury Hall,” Blake stated. “Joseph Chamberlain invented the concept of modern city government in the UK and was largely responsible for Birmingham’s success in the Victorian era. As a new generation of city leaders, we are determined to follow up on his legacy, building successful, inclusive places that fulfil their vast potential.”

The think-tank Centre for Cities published a report which claimed that the European Union was the largest export destination for 61 out of 62 cities in the UK. It urged the government to prioritise brokering a trade deal in negotiations with the bloc, in order to ensure cities remained prosperous after Brexit.

Featured in the Birmingham Mail’s hidden gems!

“More than 150 events are taking place during Birmingham Heritage Week from September 8 to 18 enabling you discover parts of the city you’ve probably never seen before – and many of them free!

You can go on guided tours, enjoy interactive storytelling and take part in workshops.

This event coincides with Heritage Open Week, which takes place every September where some 40,000 volunteers across England organise 5,000 events to celebrate our fantastic history, architecture and culture.

Here are some of the most exciting and intriguing places to explore in Birmingham …

Normally only open for weddings and special events, Highbury Hall has recently been taken over by the Chamberlain Highbury Trust.

On September 11, they will be offering guided tours around the hall which was built by industrialist Joseph Chamberlain in 1878.

From 11am to 4pm, there will be children’s history trails and wildlife activities, a variety of stalls and activities run by local groups.

They are urgently seeking volunteers to help out on the day.”Highbury exterior

Full list of gems:

Joseph Chamberlain’s Family Home Highbury open to the public.

For immediate release:

Joseph Chamberlain’s Family Home Highbury open to the public.

The Chamberlain Highbury Trust have announced that Highbury in Moseley will be one of the historic buildings open to the public as part of the Heritage Open Day Events that take place in September. Heritage Open days are free to the public and form a network of historic buildings nationwide which are open to the public during the Heritage Open Days festival of the 8th to 11th September.Highbury exterior

Highbury has not taken part in Heritage Open Days before, so this is an historic day for an historic piece of Birmingham’s civic, architectural and political history.

Joseph Chamberlain the industrialist was Lord Mayor of Birmingham and an MP for 38 years. He was the father of Austen who served as Chancellor of the Exchequer, Foreign Secretary and won the Nobel Peace prize, and of Neville who was Minister for Health and Chancellor of the Exchequer before becoming Prime Minister between 1937 to 1940.

Joseph Chamberlain built Highbury in 1878 in a unique setting close to Birmingham City Centre as his family home. The house and grounds were designed to give the illusion of the countryside whilst being close to Joseph’s political and industrial businesses. The house is full of unique arts and crafts detailing including stone carvings and terracotta, as well as wood carvings by William

Barfield, also decorative tiles and ornamental ironwork by John Hardman.

The house and grounds will be open to the public on Sunday 11th September from 11 until 4pm and will feature a number of events and activities for all ages. Tours of the house and grounds will be operating. There will be activities for families including nature walks and play sessions, beekeeping tutorials and woodworking demonstrations.

As part of the day the Trust will also be conducting the final aspect of their public consultation exercise on the restoration of Highbury which is estimated to require £7million of heritage funding and will see the house close for around one year from 2018 to 2019.


Notes to editors:


VACANCY: Project Manager

The Chamberlain Highbury Trust requires a Project Manager to develop their Heritage Lottery Fund bid

Birmingham Conservation Trust, in their role as consultants for the newly formed Chamberlain Highbury Trust, are looking to appoint an experienced Project Manager on a part-time freelance contract to develop its plans for the Highbury Estate in Birmingham for submission to the HLF for a Heritage Grant (up to £5million) and to see those plans through to completion by the end of 2019.

Highbury (Grade II*) was the home of Joseph Chamberlain and together with its grounds (Grade II) comprises one of Birmingham’s most important heritage assets. The Project Manager will work with the trustees to develop their vision for Highbury, commencing with a Stage 1 bid to the HLF and, if successful, a Stage 2 bid, with the option of extending the contract through to implementation.  Applications may be made by self-employed professionals or named individuals within professional practices.  The indicative value of the contract up to completion of the Stage 2 bid is £50,000.

Closing date for applications: 25 July 2016.  Opportunity for site visit and to meet with trustees: Thursday 14 July.  Interviews: Friday 29 July.

For a full job description and briefing pack, please contact Simon Buteux

Tel: 0121 233 4785 / 07973

Please download the supporting documents to aid your application:

CHT Project Manager Advert

CHT Project Manager Job Description

Appendix B1 Report of Stakeholder Meeting 1

Appendix B2 Report of Stakeholder Meeting 2

Appendix C Indicative Programme

Appendix D Draft Organisation Chart


A collective vision


On the 18th of May Trustees invited stakeholders back for another forum to discuss the future proposals for Highbury. It was a great event and we developed some excellent ideas.

The main part of the meeting was table based discussion groups to developing the scope of the proposals for Highbury’s restoration which will be the focus of a Round 1 bid for funding to the Heritage Lottery Fund.

There were topic based tables for the main discussions as follows:

1. House – what would it be best used for and what could happen where?

2. Landscape – how should the park be used and restored, what could/should happen where, master planning and guiding principles?

3. Activities – what, for and by whom to engage people with the heritage?

4. Income generation – short and long term sources to achieve a sustainable future?

You can download the second PDF stakeholder report here:

Report of CHT Stakeholder Meeting 2

Stakeholders meet the Trustees

On the 24th February the trustees invited stakeholders to meet with them to discuss the future plans for Highbury

On the 24th February the trustees invited stakeholders to meet with them to discuss the future plans for Highbury and to gather information about what the stakeholders needed in order to continue their programmes of activity or to develop their future activities.

It was the first time that all the groups that had been involved in Highbury came together to discuss the future of the Estate. A report was produced of the evenings discussion and the submissions made to the trust by all stakeholders including those who could not attend the evening.

You can view the PDF report below:

TCHT Stakeholder Event | Summary & Statements