Birmingham is my much-loved adopted home.
When I first walked onto the University of Birmingham’s campus I remember getting this buzzy feeling in my stomach and just felt like I totally belonged there.
In my second year I started working at two of the city’s wonderful concert halls and loved working in the heart of it all.
After graduating, I headed back to Lincolnshire and mourned the loss of a city where so much stuff was happening; where I could get a train and a bus wherever.
Getting a job back in Birmingham last year was a complete dream, and living and working in the city centre has made me very happy. I love being in a city where people actually smile at you and are approachable and generally have pride in a place which still gets a bizarrely bad rap despite the fact that it has changed remarkably over the past 30 years.
One of the things that makes me proudest to live in Birmingham is the fact that it is a massively multicultural city. A place where people of all faiths and races live and work alongside each other.
However, sadly there are some people out there who are seemingly scared by the idea of people living harmoniously. That for whatever reason, people who do not look like them or practice the same religion as them are not worthy of a place in our country.
Pegida are a group that were originally founded two years ago in Germany, and are essentially neo-Nazis. Tommy Robinson, a co-founder of the English Defence League, has decided to bring this hate group over to the UK. On the 6th February, Pegida are planning to march through Birmingham to protest the presence of Islam, their first march on UK soil.
It would be fantastic if you could sign the Hope Not Hate pledge against them here. Groups like Pegida and their hateful messages have no place in the Birmingham that I know, or a country that I would be happy to live in.