Tividale Tirupathy Balaji Temple

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The Shri Venkateswara (Balaji) Temple

The Shri Venkateswara (Balaji) Temple (grid reference SO980906) is one of the largest temple for the deity Shri Venkateswara (Balaji) in Europe. It is on Dudley Road East, A457 behind the Meadows School in Tividale, West Midlands, England, on the border between Tipton and Oldbury; it was designed in the style of the Tirupati Venkateswara Temple in Tirupati, India, which is the second busiest and richest religious centre in the world after the Vatican.

It opened on 23 August 2006 and was consecrated in a five-day ceremony between 23 and 27 August. The Vishnu incarnation Lord Venkateswara is the presiding deity, with two other deities either side of him in the main temple- his wife Padmavati, an incarnation of Vishnu's wife Lakshmi, and Hanuman the monkey God featuring in the Ramayana epic. Outside there are two small Shiva temples to his sons Ganesh and Murugan, along with a hall for Navagraha or small astrological representations of nine celestial bodies. It is an increasingly magnificent, well-appointed complex, very active with resident Brahmin priests; it is not necessary to be a Hindu to visit, but shoes are removed and photographing inside is not allowed.

Also on the site are a community centre, gatehouse, fountain and various developing lawn areas and walkways (in January 2008); the main building has two storeys, with the temple upstairs and service and administration below; Vedic tradition and Sanskrit language classes are held. Many of the Hindu community in the area speak Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam; the temple is a not-for-profit organisation.

The easiest way to get to the temple is to take bus number 87 from Birmingham or Dudley. Get down at the stop just before Luxmi off-licence store.

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Coordinates: 52°30′48″N 2°01′48″W / 52.5133°N 2.0299°W / 52.5133; -2.0299