The Site

Not your typical building site, House Race was filmed in the stunning Bullring Shopping Centre in Birmingham. With weight, time, access and lots of other restrictions, it was a challenge for the build team...

House Race Site at the Bullring

Bullring fascinating facts...

We are sure that there are still plenty of things that you don't know about Bullring. Here are just a few snippets of information that you may be interested to know:

  • Bullring provides over 110,000 sq m (1.2m sq ft) of retail space.
  • There are over 140 shops and kiosks within Bullring..
  • 3,100 new car parking spaces were created for Bullring (900 in Indoor Market car park, 1,000 in Bullring car park and 1,200 in Moor Street car park).
  • Over 8,000 jobs were created within Bullring.
  • Over half a million pounds a day was spent building Bullring.
  • 15,500 tonnes of steel are in the Bullring - thats a 1/4 of the steel in the Empire State Building.
  • There's Approximately 90,000 metres' of concrete within the new Bullring. This is enough concrete to stretch between Birmingham and Oban, Scotland ten times.


TV House Race Bullring


  • The following amounts of glass have been used in Bullring.
    Skyplane: Horizontal: 7,765 sq m
    Vertical: 2,200 sq m
    Structural: 2,381 sq m
  • Demolition of the old Bullring started the 30 June 2000, with completion in March 2001.
  • There were approximately 65,000 tonnes of concrete in the Old Bullring. During the demolition, the majority of the concrete went off site to a reprocessing plant. Small quantities have been retained to provide Haul Roads and Ramps.
  • The slope of Bullring from Rotunda down to St Martin's Church is approximately 18 metres or 40 feet - that is half the height of the Rotunda!
  • Externally, there is 12,000 sq m of granite and internally there is 13,000 sq m of limestone.
  • The Bronze Bull situated in the square at the base of Rotunda is two and a half life sized and weighs 5T.
  • 3 light wands are situated in the square at the base of the rotunda. These act as beacons and are 20, 25 & 30 meters in height.


Bullring Architecture...

Continuing Birmingham's historic street pattern has been a major influence on Bullring's design. The scheme is composed on three axes, two of which form a natural extension to the city's principal shopping streets of New Street and High Street. Between the two, St Martin's Walk, a new pedestrian boulevard, restores historic linkages to the city's traditional markets beyond St Martin's Church, where House Race was filmed.

Designed by concept architects Benoy, Bullring has been conceived as a series of malls, open spaces, covered ‘streets' and public piazzas, with the two department stores, Debenhams and Selfridges, providing an anchor on each side of the scheme. The new Debenhams store represents the first of the group's new concept stores, while Selfridges futuristic store design has already become an iconic symbol representing Birmingham.

The design of Bullring's mall pattern has created a unique opportunity to cluster brands in a series of prime locations across three trading levels. Defined by different design treatments, each trading level has its own distinct personality in terms of retail mix: high street fashion and al fresco dining at Lower Level; younger fashion and lifestyle retailing at Middle Level; and aspirational fashion on the Upper Level, East Mall.


Birmingham Bullring

A key element of Bullring's design is its permeability and the way in which new open spaces and walkways throughout the three level scheme have been designed to link into the city centre - and form an extension to Birmingham's existing prime retail pitch. The natural gradient of the site - sloping some 19 metres from north to south - has been integrated in Bullring's design so that each trading level has access to a ground floor entrance.

At Upper Level, shoppers will be drawn into the scheme via new malls created as a natural extension to both New Street and the High Street. Upper Level, East Mall, the mall continuation of New Street into Bullring towards Selfridges, is the city's new focus for fashion style leaders, while the mall continuing as an extension from the High Street towards Debenhams, provides a focus for mainstream fashion multiples. In between, St Martin's Walk, the central pedestrian boulevard, runs from Birmingham's landmark Rotunda building to open out at the new public piazza of St Martin's Square - set to become the city's newest destination for open air dining. This was the building site for House Race.

Visit the Bullring website


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