The Birmingham Riots: If there’s one documentary you watch this weekend, make it this one

Looters in Birmingham city centre

As the dust settles on a dramatic week in the UK, it’s a safe bet that hour-after-hour of TV airtime will be dedicated to programmes which reflect on what happened.

Few will be as good at relaying the incredible scenes in Birmingham as this film by Birmingham-based journalist Adam Yosef, one of the people behind the I Am Birmingham project, which was set up to showcase the best of Birmingham.

It’s safe to say that some of the images seen around the world from Brum over the past week don’t show the city at its best – but this video is by far and away the most balanced video account I’ve seen so far.

There’s a fair amount of bravery on display in the video, with some remarkable and frightening footage of parts of Birmingham being wrecked on the first night (Monday), followed by more at distance footage (very wise) on the second night, which shows gangs charging up streets and smoke billowing from the city centre.

But to counterbalance the drama, there is a lot of hope. There’s footage of the social media-organised clean up which took place on Tuesday morning, and brilliant interviews with regular people, talking about their fears, and the hope which comes from a community pulling together.

The captions at the end sum up perfectly how the riots came to an end, thanks to the powerful words of a grieving father.

As I said in the headline, if you spend 15 minutes watching any documentary about what went on in Birmingham last week, make it 15 minutes on this one:


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