Robins? Holly? Stagecoaches? Snow? Not quite. Festive greetings from the International Convention Centre, owned by Birmingham City Council, come through the post this year as a photograph of the glass- fronted Hyatt Hotel. The sky is cloudless blue; the trees are in full leaf; hundreds of tulips fill the foreground. No message appears on the front and it is possible to identify it as a Christmas card only from the greetings inside.
Even though the picture was taken by Lord Lichfield, as part of a series to promote the city, not all citizens are impressed. 'It is the worst Christmas card of the year,' said Alan Blumenthal, a Conservative city councillor, who is Jewish. 'They must have really worked hard to find something as inappropriate as this.'
The Labour-controlled council has erected a 'Merry Christmas' banner in the city centre as a response to earlier criticism from church leaders, traders and shoppers over the non-traditional Christmas lights.
'This sanitised, censored version of Christmas must not be allowed to continue,' Mr Blumenthal said.
The convention centre put a brave face on things. 'The card is a summer scene,' a spokesman agreed. 'But at least it does have some red in it.'Reuse content