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Healthier Futures - Our places

The Black Country and West Birmingham has a strong rich industrial and manufacturing heritage. From being at the heart of the industrial revolution, the region is now a vibrant, multi-cultural hub with diverse communities, beautiful parks and open spaces and a mix of shops, restaurants, culture and entertainment.

The Black Country and West Birmingham offers a great variety of places to live and explore. From Dudley, the historical capital of the Black Country, to modern city centre apartments in Birmingham to the leafy suburbs of Edgbaston, there is something for everyone.

Surrounding Birmingham to the west and north, the Black Country and West Birmingham has excellent road, rail and air networks.

  • Road: the M6, M5 and M54 are the main networks feeding the majority of boroughs within the region
  • Rail/Tram: the tram service runs across our footprint from Birmingham to Wolverhampton and provides an excellent link. Main rail companies offer a variety of services east to west and north to south (£150m is currently being invested in Wolverhampton to redevelop the Interchange transport hub).
  • Air: the nearest airport is Birmingham International; however, our road and rail networks make Manchester and London very accessible

Dudley, Walsall, Sandwell and Wolverhampton all have their own range of shops reflecting the communities that have grown up and established themselves in the Black Country. Meanwhile, The Bullring and Grand Central Station in Birmingham and Merry Hill Shopping Centre in Dudley offer everything a shopper could possibly want from mainstream high street stores to bespoke specialist shops.

The diversity of our communities in the Black Country and West Birmingham affords a great opportunity for experiencing different and varied eating and dining experiences. The cultural and economic renaissance of Birmingham over the past 10 years has brought a lively and cosmopolitan feel which has impacted the Black Country as well. There are bars and restaurants to suit every mood, taste and budget: from Chinatown to traditional balti, to a range of bars and bistros, to high-end Michelin star restaurants (the highest number of Michelin stars outside London).”

There are many places within the region appealing to all different interests. Dudley Castle, Black Country Living Museum, Dudley Zoo, Sandwell Valley Country Park, Walsall Arboretum and National Trust properties such as Wightwick Manor and Moseley Old Hall. Both Walsall and Wolverhampton have first rate art galleries with nationally-recognised collections and exhibitions. In addition, there is a range of theatres, libraries, museums, music and comedy clubs with a wealth of entertainment opportunities to suit everyone’s taste.

Our many arenas offer a variety of sporting experiences including football (Bescot Stadium, St Andrews, Molineux, Villa Park, The Hawthorns), cricket (Edgbaston), golf (The Belfry), athletics (Alexandra Stadium) and speedway (Monmore Green Stadium) . For participation sports there are numerous venues across the region in which you can take part in anything from the more traditional sports to something a little different such as glow-in-the-dark golf.

Find out more

To find out more about the Black Country and West Birmingham please visit:

In The News

  • Liz delighted at inclusion in New Year Honours for COVID-19 work

    A primary care nurse advisor from NHS Black Country and West Birmingham has been included in the New Year Honours List for her contribution to patient care during the COVID-19 pandemic. Liz Corrigan is General Practice Nursing Professional Lead for the Black Country and West Birmingham Sustainability and Transformation Partnership and has worked in various nursing roles in the local area over the last 25 years. Liz, who lives in Wolverhampton, has been honoured with the British Empire Medal fo...

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  • Local health leaders show support for carers during Carers Week 2020

    Heath bosses in the Black Country and West Birmingham are celebrating the role of carers as part of national Carers Week, especially because of the important contributions they have made during the coronavirus pandemic. This week (8-14 June 2020) is Carers Week – a national awareness initiative highlighting the important work being done by carers in the community – and local health leaders in the Black Country and West Birmingham are supporting this important campaign. Jonathan Fellows, Indepe...

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  • Health chiefs encourage people to visit pharmacies first

    As part of the national Help Us, Help You campaign, health bosses in the Black Country and West Birmingham are encouraging people to visit their pharmacy for advice on minor injuries and ailments. Research shows that 27 percent of general practice appointments in England could potentially be treated elsewhere. Approximately 18 million of these could be treated through self-care and community pharmacies. Many pharmacies are open late, making it easier than ever to get advice. They can advise yo...

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  • NHS rapid response team helps frail older patients

    Against a background of an ageing population and increasing frailty, one NHS Trust has identified opportunities to provide a service targeted at this patient group. The initiative is designed to prevent unnecessary hospital admissions through the emergency front door and keep frail older people safe in their own homes.  Emma Hibbs, Advanced Physiotherapist at Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust, explains: “We know that nationally around 50% of the population aged 65+ live with...

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  • Healthier Futures partnership secures funding to develop system-wide digital app

    The Healthier Futures partnership (Black Country & West Birmingham STP) has been awarded NHS funding following a successful pitch, to develop a healthcare app which will increase access to services for the local population. The NHS has identified funding to accelerate worthwhile projects across the country, inviting bids from all systems. A very limited number of organisations were invited to pitch to their respective regional digital teams and the Healthier Futures partnership has been su...

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  • It’s all aboard for popular NHS event

    The next stops for a popular NHS event have been confirmed in the Black Country. More than 200 people flocked to the big NHS red bus in Walsall City Centre to bag advice and freebies to help them keep well this Winter. NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups across the Black Country are behind the events, which aim to raise awareness of the simple steps people can take to keep well during winter. The importance of getting the flu vaccine, how keeping warm can help keep illnesses at bay and reminding...

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  • Check in on vulnerable people this Christmas

    People in the Black Country and West Birmingham are being advised to wrap up warm over the winter season and to look out for vulnerable people during the Christmas and New Year period. Local people are being asked to remember older relatives, friends and neighbours as well as other vulnerable people at this time of year. The over 65s and those with long-term health conditions or disabilities are at increased risk of illness during the winter months. It is important to regularly check in on ol...

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  • Black Country mental health employment service to expand support to local people

    A local service that helps people with severe mental illness to find employment, has successfully obtained additional funding from NHS England to expand its service in the Black Country. The NHS Five Year Forward View (2014) recognises that the employment rate of people with severe and enduring mental health problems is the lowest of all disability groups at just 7%. Furthermore, mental health problems now account for more than twice the number of Employment and Support Allowance and Incapacity...

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  • Dr Doreen Tipton says get the flu jab!

    Doreen Tipton joins health professionals to urge patients across the Black and West Birmingham to get their free flu jabs before the winter sets in. In a video launched by Futureproof Health, the Black Country comic icon Doreen Tipton, played by actress Gill Jordan reminds residents that it’s time for those at greatest risk from flu to protect themselves and their families with a free flu jab. Flu is a highly contagious infection that anyone can catch, and it can be a really serious illness fo...

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  • Service to cut A&E visits from “frequent callers” in the Black Country a Success

    Vulnerable patients are benefitting from a new frequent user project across the Black Country and West Birmingham. A one-year evaluation of the project commissioned by Dudley CCG and Dudley CVS has shown that in those patients who frequently attend A&E, there was a 33% reduction in attendances and a 41% reduction in inpatient admissions, saving the NHS more than £500,000. Delivered by the Dudley CVS Integrated Plus social prescribing team and match-funded by Dudley CCG and the Department o...

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