Welcome to
Established 1854

National Lockdown Update

Due to the new national lockdown, the BMI is unfortunately closed until the 2nd of December.

However, we are currently working on a range of online events so please follow our Facebook and Twitter, and keep your eyes peeled!

The Institute has been at the heart of Birmingham’s cultural life for almost 170 years.

Founded by Act of Parliament in 1854 for the ‘Diffusion and Advancement of Science, Literature and Art amongst all Classes of Persons resident in Birmingham and Midland Counties’, the BMI is a membership organisation which has a thriving programme of cultural and educational activities, including a wide spectrum of arts and science lectures, exhibitions and concerts. Both members and the general public are encouraged to participate. The building is also a venue for many externally-organised events and can be booked for conferences and meetings.

The Institute also owns and runs the original Birmingham Library, founded in 1779. The Library collection is gradually growing by the regular purchase of new books, principally on the field of humanities and modern fiction.

Our Latest Twitter Feeds

  • #Christmas2020 has come to the BMI. We have our very own #booktree and sitting as the star on the top, the very a… 3 days ago
  • RT  @serena_t : Not long now until  @PreRaphSoc  first online lecture! Listen to  @BCUEnglish  doctoral student Karl Merrick discuss #Swinburne p… 3 days ago
  • RT  @ColmoreBID : Last year, across the District, we collected food donations for  @FoodbankB30 . We wanted to continue our support this year s… 3 days ago
Lyttelton Theatre Room


The Institute is a Grade II*- listed building, with a number of rooms and theatres available for hire. By hiring a room in our building, you are also contributing to the BMI’s charitable aims; revenue raised from room hire contributes to our cultural programme.

BMI Events


Come and join us for workshops, day schools, recitals and more! Available for both members and none members.

BMI Library


The BMI is also home to the original Birmingham Library that was founded in 1779 by John Lee, a button manufacturer who lived at 115 Snow Hill. This private lending library was reorganised in 1781 by Joseph Priestley, the pioneering chemist who discovered oxygen.

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Onsite Catering & Coffee Lounge

The BMI Coffee Lounge is open to both BMI Members and users of the Institute.

Contact Us

We're not around right now. But you can send us an email and we'll get back to you, as soon as we can.

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