Is this the most famous person our town has ever produced? His face may not be familiar, but his name definitely is! This is John Cadbury, the original chocolate guy, who died 130 years ago this month having created the company that went from humble Bournville beginnings to be the second-largest confectionery brand in the world (after Mars).
So we wondered what beats chocolate in the Birmingham fame stakes? Is music better than a Dairy Milk? Is laughter or romance more impressive than a Crème Egg? Here’s some more famous Brummies whose contribution to the world could perhaps rival a box of Roses or a Double Decker, but what do you think?
1. Ozzy Osbourne
The legendary Prince of Darkness was born in Aston in 1948 and went on to find global success as Black Sabbath frontman, reality TV star and solo performer. He has won every music award going, from an Ivor Novello Award for Lifetime Achievement to the NME Award for Godlike Genius, but is he more famous than a bag of Dairy Milk Buttons?
2. Joe Lycett
Comedian and star of loads of TV shows like 8 Out of 10 Cats and Live at the Apollo, Joe, who is from Hall Green, has become a household name and he’s only 30 years old. Think what he will have achieved by the time he gets to Ozzy’s age! He’s come a very long way since winning the Chortle Student Comedian of the Year in 2009 but is he better than a Curly Wurly?
3. Benjamin Zephaniah
The world-famous poet, writer, lyricist, musician and naughty boy was born in Handsworth. He was mates with Nelson Mandella and he turned down an OBE in 2003 saying “I get angry when I hear that word empire, it reminds me of slavery”. He was listed in The Times 50 Greatest post-war writers …but would you prefer a Wispa Gold?
4. Barbara Cartland
Babs was born right here in Edgbaston, and became one of the world’s best-selling and most prolific authors of the twentieth century, notching up 723 novels translated into 38 languages. It is estimated her books have sold more than 2 billion copies worldwide, but would you rather have a Crunchie?