The Peaky Tours – Take a step inside The Peaky Blinders


The hit BBC show ‘The Peaky Blinders’ has propelled Birmingham history into the limelight like never before. With so many now captured by the stories of Birmingham’s infamous gangsters, fans have now been given the opportunity to trace the very footsteps of the notorious hard men and to learn the true history behind the gangs that have ascended into the public eye almost one hundred years on from the days they were functioning.

The Peaky Tours is an evening hosted by the Birmingham tours company and is lead by the iconic historian and broadcaster Carl Chinn MBE. On Monday night we went along to the tour to experience an evening on the Peaky Tours.

The night starts in the historic Old Crown. The pub is infamous for establishing itself as Birmingham’s oldest inn and has been functioning since 1368. The black and white timber exterior perfectly sets the scene as you are transported back to 1920s Birmingham.

Peaky hats are in abundance with punters seizing the opportunity to feel like a real Peaky Blinder for one night only.

The star of the show is undisputedly the leader of the tour, Carl Chinn MBE. Carl’s enthusiasm for Birmingham history is not only in abundance from the minute you step inside the Old Crown but it is also contagious with everyone soon finding themselves emerged in the history of the 1890s-1920s working-class underworld of Birmingham.

Carl’s enthusiasm for the infamous gangs stems from his own personal ties. As a direct descendant from a peaky blinder there is no one better served to transport you back to the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Away from the Old Crown, Carl will lead the group through the very roads the gangsters of Birmingham used to walk. Leading you under bridges while relaying the exact details of the men brutally assaulted under the bridges you tread under, Carl is able to weave an atmosphere and aura that makes you feel as though you are apart of the 1920s gang wars.

Carl also notably dispels many of the myths and falsehoods popularised by the TV show. From how the Peaky Blinders were actually gangsters and criminals that were operating thirty years before the decade the show is set in, to exposing the real meaning behind the name ‘ The Peaky Blinders’ – the tour is an imperative and necessary evening for any enthusiasts of Birmingham history or simply just avid watchers of the BBC’s hit show.

To learn more about the Peaky Tours visit

Special thanks to Stacey Minott for allowing us access to the tour.

Billy Hodder


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