Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) were measured in air (using PUF disk passive samplers) and soil samples taken at approximately monthly intervals over 1 year at 10 locations on a transect across the West Midlands of the UK. Concentrations in air are consistent with those detected elsewhere in Europe and the Great Lakes basin. Concentrations in soil fall within the range reported for rural woodland and grassland soils in the UK and Norway. In both air and soil, concentrations clearly decrease with increasing distance from the city center, supporting the existence of an urban "pulse", indicating the West Midlands conurbation to be a source of PBDEs to the wider environment. Examination of seasonal trends revealed no evidence of a "spring pulse" in concentrations in air, with no summer peak in concentrations in air observed for 70% of sites. The PBDE congener pattern in air differs from that in soil, with ratios of congeners 47:99 higher in air than in soil. It is hypothesized that PBDEs volatilize from treated products indoors, before ventilating outdoors, where congener 99 undergoes preferential atmospheric deposition and accumulation in soil.