What are Birmingham’s best sayings?

We asked Brummies what their favourite local sayings are

The Brummie accent often gets a bit of a bad rap, and some of our sayings would leave most outsiders looking a bit confused. But we don’t get a cob on about it, and we thought we’d go into town to find out what the locals’ favourite sayings are.

Because, of course, we’re proud of our local lingo.

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We spoke to Brummies in the city centre - here’s what they said.

Phil Oldershaw, Birmingham

Phil told BirminghamWorld: “Of course in Birmingham, we’ve got loads of unique sayings and more so depending if you go out to Black Country, Wolverhampton - those sort of places.

“But I like Yam Alright Bab? Which means are you alright? Or arr, I’m alright! They’re key ones that stand out for me, but there’s so many different phrases, you know, it’s part of our heritage and history. And I think Peaky Blinders, although dodgy accents in there, but I think that’s done wonders for Birmingham.”

Grace & Beth, Birmingham

Beth said: “I actually really like that people call you Bab. My Dad’s from Tamworth. So hearing him call someone else bab when we’re elsewhere. And them being so confused. And knowing that he just means it in, like, an endearing way. Yeah, I love that.”

Tom & Tom, Birmingham

Tom says:“I don’t really like the Birmingham accent. So I’m not going to comment!”

Roxy, Birmingham

Roxy added: “Oh, I think it’s so spicy. I used to always hate it, but I - yeah! I don’t know. I think it’s, like, really deep.

“And I love that everyone’s always like Bab and darling. And yeah, I think it’s really spicy. Obviously, sometimes it’s a bit too hard. And I really struggle with accents because I’m from Poland. So I really struggle with understanding, like, Irish and Scottish accents, but when someone speaks like a really good, deep Brummy accent, I’m like, yes, yes. Yes, I’m single! Let’s go.”

Many of Birmingham’s sayings may seem a bit yampy to most, lending words and syntax from the Germanic roots. But with heartthrob Cillian Murphy portraying the accent to such a wide audience, maybe the rest of us just inadvertently became more attractive, and dare I say - even a little exotic!

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