The BCF Footsteps Birmingham Faith Community map contains information about Birmingham’s 800+ places of worship and faith-based organisations and includes information about local faith community involvement with Foodbanks, Places of Warm Welcome and other community activities.
The map was developed to support Footsteps’ fuel poverty and faith building energy assessment work. The map is now being made accessible from the Footsteps’ website through the Birmingham City Observatory to enable wide range of users to explore Birmingham 700+ places of worship and the parts that they play in the city’s life.
Birmingham is a ‘super-diverse’ city with a population of 1.14m. In the 2021 Census of Population almost 70% of the people indicated that they had a religious affiliation. Included on the map are places of worship and activities associated with Birmingham’s six main faiths: Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Muslim and Sikh.
You can view and interact with the map online below, or via Tableau.
Acknowledgement: Developed by Mike Westley, WheresWez Co
Using the Map
Using the map fully involves being able to drill down from a ‘city’ or ward overview to looking in detail at a particular location. Places of worship in a particular area can be highlighted using a ‘lasso’ selection tool.
Filters can be used to investigate individual wards or faiths. A sliding selection tool selects places of worship in localities with different levels of fuel poverty.
There is a link to Google Maps and Google Street View for each place of worship which includes the date when the photograph was taken.
You can download a copy of the Navigation and Filters Guide:
Finding out more about Places of Worship
The map contains information about the geographic location, main faith affiliations and community involvement for Birmingham’s 700+ places of worship.
Most places of worship have a website or Facebook pages with information about services and activities and contact information. This information is not, therefore included on the BCF Footsteps map.
The BCF Footsteps has a link to Google Maps and Google Street View for each place of worship. By following this link you can see a photograph of the place of worship and in many cases read the notice board. Following the link to Google Maps will often provide a further link to a website.
Local community involvement
Many places of worship are also involved with their local communities by hosting and supporting Foodbanks, Places of Warm Welcome and other activities. These are shown as separate categories.
Other groups and organisations also provide support in local communities. BVSC maintains comprehensive directories of different activities, groups, services and support provided to citizens, organisations and communities by, as well as faith, other Voluntary, Community, Social Enterprise (VCFSE) and public and private sector organisations.
‘Place of Worship’ and other definitions
In Birmingham local faith groups worship at allocation in a variety of buildings and situations. Some worship in a building – e.g. a gurdwara, church, mosque, synagogue or temple – that is a recognisable ‘faith building’. Other groups occupy and worship in buildings that were originally shops, offices and factory units. As neighbourhoods change, some faith buildings are taken over by different faiths or used for different purposes.
Only named local, named worshipping groups meeting at a specific geographic location are included on the map. Small ‘house’ or ‘study’ groups associated with a larger worshipping group are not included.
Most local worshipping groups register under the Places of Worship Registration Act 1855 to certify they are places of meeting for religious worship and the solemnisation of marriages.
You can download the Technical Guide to Terminology, Definitions and Field Names:
Keeping the Map up to Date
The map draws together information about Birmingham’s places of worship from a wide range of sources, including the original faith map on the City Council website pre-2013, Places of Worship Registration Act (POWRA) data, information in the public domain provided by faith groups, websites, Google maps and other search tools.
The map contains information about over 700 places of worship in Birmingham. Faith communities are, though, constantly changing and evolving and we know that there are omissions and errors in our data.
To help improve the map, please send additions and corrections to firstname.lastname@example.org