Created in Birmingham evolves

Welcome to the new design of Created in Birmingham.

We felt that the site could do with a spring clean and some updating, with the layout top of the list.  We we’ve not gone for a major overhaul, just a few changes that will allow the site to grow a little.

The extra sidebar will allow some extra functionality and features to be added which will make the site an even more useful place to visit. These will be brought in over the next week(ish) so keep your eyes peeled.

There are still a few things to tweak and some other changes going on, so please consider this a work in progress. Allow me one more bit of navel-gazing for now though…

The font we’ve used is Baskerville, which was created by Birmingham’s celebrated typographer and printer John Baskerville in the 1700s. It’s simple, elegant and, still in use worldwide 200 years later, and therefore a shining example of the city’s creative endeavours.


  1. Congratulations for adopting the Baskerville font! Indeed the font for Birmingham. The last time I saw it being promoted was in Jenny Ugrow’s fascinating book The Lunar Men. Baskerville was, I believe, associated with the Lunar Society but not a regular member.

  2. would it be better use of screen space to put the content which is at the top of column four (i’m guessing a five-column grid here) somewhere else, so enabling the unused space in most of column four to be used to allow those of us who prefer to keep our browser windows relatively small to do so without having a horizontal scroll bar ?

    i don’t mind making my window bigger to view actual content but i have to admit i prefer not to have to do so in order to have a big empty space in the middle of the screen…

  3. Oooh, a facelift!

    Good to see beautiful Brummie legend Baskerville being used. Works lovely in print too …

    Anyway, the site looks a-okay in Firefox. But not so good in Safari: the sidebar drops beneath the posts; the main text is teeny weeny and grey on grey; and the ‘day-by-day’ nav has disappeared. I know, I know, I really should just stick with the ‘Fox … and may well be the only Safari viewer anyway?! Snagging ends.

    Definitely like the new look – it seems like there’s more going on somehow, and the calendar nav thing is a grand idea. It should be helpful for those “I know I read something useful a week last Tuesday …” moments!

  4. Cool in Safari now then…

    Now for any Internet Explorer niggles?

    I’d really appreciate any PC users to let me know how it’s looking!

    @Simon – re the fourth/fifth column, Chris has some plans for this area, so I’ll leave that area to him if that’s okay. But you mean the search/subscribe/email updates area?

  5. In IE with Windows XP-Professional, all of your sidebars are displaying below the posts. Haven’t tried it at home (with IE and whatever version of Windows I have there, I forget off the top of my head) yet.

    I know IE/PC users are barbarians and all the rest of it, but one would have thought that if there was any browser system you could have gone out of your way to have a look at…

  6. @Russ L – Unfortunately this was a little on the rushed side, and I’ve been testing on Windows 2003 server which looks like it’s not perfect.

    Huge apologies but this should be a quick fix!

  7. @stef – yep that’s it, below the email box; if there’re plans to put lots more stuff below that to make use of the space then fair enough.

  8. @all Okay I’m stumped. I think that we’ve just got one of those weird browser issues pretty much _only_ in Internet Explorer 6 and I don’t have a version that shows the problem so I can’t test it.

    I’ll find some time to fix the problem but I’ve got to get back to some urgent work on something else now.

    Really sorry to the IE6 users amongst you who are seeing this right hand column problem.

    I’ll try to get this fixed asap.

    Any other problems/critique/ideas/suggestions just let us know.

  9. Right-ho here’s a thought.

    The idea of day-by-day navigation, I like, as I said.

    As it’s designed at the moment however, when we get to June, it looks as if all of May will disappear? This wouldn’t be so useful after all. Also, I can’t see there’s currently a way of getting back further than May 1st, apart from clicking back page by page.

    Perhaps more of a regular calendar sort of thing’d do the trick, so we can search by day, week, month and even by year?

    I think this sort of search could be useful, not least as a kind of legacy thing to be able to see what was going on in Birmingham this time last year.

    Oooh, another thought – this calendar could include a note of any festivals/events that are coming up; “Put this date in your diaries” kind of thing. I’d find this quick overview of what’s coming up pretty handy as there are times I forget what’s going on …

    Oooh, ooooh! There could be a subscription thing so it can then be read into iCal – I think that’s possible?!

    Okay, sorry, that’s enough – better get back to work.

  10. I’ve always wondered how often people use calendars for navigation. There’s always the archive for the legacy thing.

    As for listings, I’m looking to pull something in from elsewhere – there’s no way I can generate something myself. I like the idea of calendar integration and there’s a couple of ways that could work. Hmm.

    Cheers for that. More thoughts welcome.

  11. Nice concept for the font, but I agree that Sans Serif should be used for smaller text. Serif’s aren’t particularly dyslexia friendly and the creative industry’s rammed with dyslexics like spazzo here. The posts seem a bit squashed up to the side too. I think that could be fixed by making the CiB title the same width as the posts so as to make the eye flow. It might help distinguish the title & menu from the text ad. It’s nearly there though.

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