Not long ago, a brand new Primark opened in Birmingham. Now you might be wondering so what? Why should you care about this new Primark when there’s already one in every town in the UK and several other countries too? Well, there is actually something very special about this one as it’s the world’s largest Primark Store with 5 floors of shopping, 3 cafes and a restaurant. So, of course, we had to go see this for ourselves! But is the world’s largest Primark in Birmingham worth the trip?
How to get to the World’s Largest Primark in Birmingham
The new Primark is located in Birmingham’s city centre right next to the Bullring Shopping Centre. There are two entrances to Primark, one going to High Street and one to Moor Street and the official address is 38 High Street, Birmingham, B4 7SL. If you are driving there are plenty of carparks nearby although they can be pretty expensive. We parked in the Moor Street multistory carpark at B5 5JH which came out just down from the Moor Street entrance and is the cheapest of the official Bullring carparks, although still £12 for 6-8 hours. There are a few other parking areas nearby for a lot less money (the cheapest we saw was £3 all day) but a lot of these looked a little sketchy so you park here at your own risk.
If you’re visiting by public transport or just coming from further afield, the Moor Street train station is the best place to go. It is only across the road from the entrance to Primark so takes less than 2 minutes to get there from the station. If it is more convenient for you, it is also possible to get off at Birmingham New Street which leads to Grand Central and is about an 8-minute walk away from Primark. The closest bus stop to Primark is Moor Street Queensway (MS4) or slightly further along the road if you plan to head to the Bullring first. The Birmingham Coach Station is also only around a 10-minute walk to the Moor Street entrance.
Primark Cafè with Disney
We arrived at the world’s largest Primark at about 10am and headed straight to the highest of the five floors (floor 2) where the Primark Disney Cafè is located. This was probably the main reason we wanted to visit since (even as adults) all three of us love Disney. Primark has a deal to create official Disney products, which is one of the draws to the store, so it makes sense for them to open a Disney themed cafè. Clearly, this was also one of the main reasons everyone else was visiting too as there was quite a queue by the time we got there.
We did have to wait a while before we got seated (around 45 minutes) which wasn’t helped by the fact there was a backlog on the hot drinks and a fair amount of tables that were being reserved for parties of two despite the fact they could easily fit 3 or 4 if there were extra chairs. If you went during the week or just after the hype of the new Primark dies down I’m sure the queue wouldn’t be as long.
Once we got into the Cafè, the Disney theming did not disappoint and even the smallest details like the table separators contained hidden references. The food, on the other hand, left a little to be desired. The dishes were pretty cheap so I can’t fault them for that but as they only had a kids menu the portions were a little small. For 2 Mickey shaped waffles or pancakes and a few pieces of fruit, it was £2.50 which is not bad at all but if you’re hungry you might want to order a few portions.
We saw quite a lot of adults going in there without children, including ourselves so you won’t be alone if you do. When we were there they had also run out of fruit skewers, the smoothie machine was broken and there was a 45-minute wait for hot drinks. Of course, there are always a few teething problems when a new place opens though so hopefully these things will be improved on in time.
After a couple of hours of shopping, we were ready to head to the next cafe of the day, the Primarket. This is located on floor 1 which is the second to the top. They don’t serve full meals here as it’s more of a coffee and cake kind of place. This is also where you can find the customisable doughnuts and by customisable I mean they will spray paint them with food colouring for you for an extra £1.
I was a little bit disappointed with this as I was under the impression there would be more options for customisation such as different fillings or flavour icings. Instead, you can pick from around 5 or 6 premade doughnuts, which weren’t actually labelled so you have to guess the flavour (sounds like a recipe for disaster if you have food allergies) and then you can pick the colour to spray it. I don’t think the colour really added anything as it wasn’t flavoured and in a way kind of ruined the aesthetic of the doughnut. The rainbow cake Jess had looked good though and was so big she ended up taking some home with her.
By the time we had picked up a few last minute items, decided which queue for the cash registers was the shortest and paid for our Primark haul, it was almost 3pm and we were hungry for some lunch. We headed to The Mez on floor -1 which is the Primark food court. It was a little quieter here and there seemed to be a few staff who didn’t really have much to do so were just wandering around.
One thing that was really frustrating about The Mez, along with all the other cafes here (although to a lesser extent) was that there was no clear menu anywhere. We just had to wander around the counter looking at what was on offer and at a few boards that we could see which just had one item on with a price from… £3 or whatever. Only after we ordered we saw someone with a burger and curly fries which we hadn’t seen anywhere although it may have been on the kid’s menu.
Lucy and I played it safe by ordering something we could see from the counter, the pizza. I had a Margherita and Lucy had a Chicken Tikka pizza. Both of these were pretty good although there wasn’t a lot of tomato on mine. Luckily I don’t like it so I wasn’t too bothered. The portion sizes did seem pretty small again but for the price, we paid, compared to an actual restaurant I can’t really complain.
Jess, on the other hand, decided to take a risk and order something she had seen on one of the boards, the fully loaded tikka popadoms. The picture showed lots of pouch-shaped popadoms with a ball of Chicken Tikka in each one but what she got was nothing like this. The popadoms were either burnt or just really weird and there was only a tiny amount of chicken with them. We would not recommend you get these if you visit even if the picture on their wall makes them look so good!
The Shopping Experience
With 5 floors worth of shopping to do, you could expect that pretty much anything you could possibly want will be found here. And you would be right to an extent. There is a lot of stock across the whole of the store and there is definitely way more stuff to buy than your average store however we didn’t find there was that much more of the branded stuff like Disney or Harry Potter merch.
Despite having entire sections dedicated to both of these franchises, we didn’t find a whole lot that we liked in terms of t-shirts or pyjamas when normally Primark is our go-to shop for these. Perhaps it was just the time of year we went to though since these are pretty seasonal. There did seem to be more of this in the home and accessory sections though and I managed to get a Disney teapot, mug and even a handbag so it wasn’t a wasted trip.
On top of this, the new Primark is just as unorganized as any other store around the country and it’s huge size just makes it more so. Most of the sections aren’t very well laid out and so it’s very difficult to find things if you have something particular in mind. I believe this is so as you’re wandering through the aisles completely lost, you’re more likely to stumble across something random you want but didn’t need so you’ll end up spending more money.
In particular, the Disney stuff doesn’t seem to make sense for me. There is a Disney Store section on floor 1 which has most of the Disney homeware as well as a few accessories and elsewhere on the floor is the Custom T-shirt printing lab which prints Disney t-shirts, and another section with premade Disney t-shirts then downstairs are Disney pyjamas and upstairs are Disney kids clothes. I guess it makes sense in terms of being with the other clothing of the same type but it makes it difficult if you’re looking specifically for Disney things. The same goes for Harry Potter and Game of Thrones items too.
World’s Largest Primark Store Floor Plan
-2 Mens, Mills Barbers, Coffee Kiosk, Exit to Moor Street
-1 The Mez, Coffee Kiosk
0 Womens Clothing, Beauty, Duck and Dry Xpress Beauty studio, Exit to High Street
1 Womens clothes, accessories and shoes, Home, Custom Lab T-shirt Printing, Primarket tech, stationary and clothes, Primarket cafe
2 Kids, Lingerie, Primark Cafe with Disney
Is the World’s Largest Primark Worth a Visit?
Overall I think this really depends on what you want to get out of your trip. If you want to get lots of cheap clothes and don’t mind spending hours wandering around looking for them than this Primark is definitely for you. However, if you only want one of two things it probably isn’t worth the journey for Primark alone. If you’re already heading to Birmingham, it’s worth checking out just to say you’ve been to the world’s largest Primark or if you want to combine it with a shopping trip in the Bullring. For us, it was a nice sisters day out but I probably wouldn’t go again for a full day. There are much better food places close by but the cafes are a nice touch if you have a big shopping day and just fancy a quick snack.
If you do head to Birmingham to visit the world’s largest Primark, why not check out The Bear Grylls Adventure while you’re there.