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Building anniversary

Building anniversary

Saturday marks the 25th anniversary of the official opening of Wesleyan's Head Office at Colmore Circus in Birmingham.

The red carpet was rolled out on 25 March 1992 to welcome the Duke of Kent, who unveiled a plaque in reception before being given a tour of the new state of the art building.

The new offices were built on the site of the old Wesleyan Chief Office and historic Gaumont Cinema. Both buildings had become familiar landmarks to generations of Brummies, with the cinema being particularly famous for not only having one of Europe's largest screens, but also for showing the Sound of Music every day for two years, to a total audience of more than two million people!

The decision to demolish the old Chief Office wasn't taken lightly, but the Board ultimately decided that, after 83 years, it was no longer adequate for the growing Society's needs and the advance of modern technology.

Birmingham architects Peter Ring and Jones won the pitch to design a landmark, cruciform-shaped building that is now one of the most recognisable buildings on the city's skyline.

Like the old Chief Office, the new building was innovative in its design and construction. The outside of the building is clad in Brazilian marble, polished and laminated in Italy. To reinforce the marble, and make it lighter, it was then shipped to Texas for to receive a honeycomb backing, before finally being transported to Birmingham to be installed onto the building.

If anyone has any memories or photos of the old Chief Office, please let us know.

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