Pigeon fancying is a fascinating part of the West Midlands’ social history and still today Birmingham has more pigeon fanciers than any other UK city. Birmingham has local claims to international fame such as the breeding of the performance flying pigeon the Birmingham Roller and the development of pigeon racing charts the development of the Industrial Revolution in the region.
In celebration of Birmingham’s rich pigeon fancying heritage between September 2011 and May 2013 Project Pigeon is making an archive about the history and culture of pigeon fancying in the area. The project has been made possible through a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund. We are working with volunteers to make oral history recordings and video interviews with pigeon fanciers and collecting memorabilia. The archive will be housed in Birmingham Library Archives from September 2013 when the new library opens.
Project Pigeon and volunteers made over 30 oral history and 12 video interviews as part of the archive, please see below some extracts from the interviews. The project has brought people from different generations, cultures and backgrounds together.