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Birmingham mural honours legacy of poet giant Benjamin Zephaniah

The tribute will be unveiled in Handsworth Park, near where the poet grew up, after the accidental removal of another artwork in the city

The late Benjamin Zephaniah, one of Birmingham’s leading cultural figures, is to take his rightful place watching over the city when a new, official mural honouring the life of the poet and campaigner is unveiled at a ceremony in Handsworth Park on 14 April.

Despite the threats posed by the bankrupt city council’s recent cut to all arts funding, the public artwork will arrive at a relative high point for Birmingham’s wider cultural reputation, as the popular television drama This Town continues to chronicle the 80s boom in Ska and 2 Tone music in the Midlands. The BBC show is written by Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight, a writer who, like Zephaniah, has been instrumental in rebuilding the confidence of a city often unfairly lampooned for its modernist urban infrastructure and supposed lack of sophistication.

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