“ Nottingham is a city (and county town of Nottinghamshire) in the East Midlands of England. The centre of Nottingham lies on the River Leen and its southern boundary follows the course of the River Trent, which flows from Stoke to the Humber. According to the 2001 census, Nottingham has an estimated city population of 275,100 which increased to an estimated 278,700 in 2005, while the Nottingham Urban Area conurbation (which includes surrounding suburbs outside the city boundary, and neighbouring towns) has a population of 666,358 (2001 figures). Nottingham is a member of the English Core Cities Group. „
Although I am not originally from Nottingham, this is now where I live because of university. I chose to come here partly for my course and partly because I knew there was a lot to do in the city. I couldn't think of much worse than being stuck living somewhere that you don't like or somewhere that you can't have much fun. This review will be about some of the things I love to do and see in Nottingham - some of the appealing aspects of the city.
I love photography and even though it is only a hobby, this city is a photographer's paradise. Having gone on some quite random bus journeys to get to places, I have found some fantastic places. My favourite is definitely Colwick Country Park, which is about a 15 minute bus ride (number 44 from King Street) from the city centre. The park has around 65 acres of land, a massive lake and plenty of places to fish if that's what you're interested in. The woods and green areas are absolutely stunning and I could have spent days there. Having only been once so far, I want to make a return trip soon to see the park in a different season and to see how it changes what is there.
My favourite night out is a Monday at The Forum. Monday nights here are student nights for Nottingham Trent University so unfortunately, most people aren't able to get in. Doors open at around 10:30 but my friends and I always get there a lot earlier, somewhere around 9:30. The queues are massive on Monday nights and if you don't get there early, you probably won't get in. The club always reaches capacity which is why people start getting turned away quickly. This does mean sitting in a pretty empty club for a little while but it fills up quickly and then the night really gets going. The Forum plays a great mix of chart music but mostly RnB which I love. I barely drink once I'm in the club due to dancing but the drinks are cheap on these nights due to who comes.
Transport - this is a bit of a strange thing to really like about somewhere but it is for good reason. The transport links, whether it be buses, trains or trams, in Nottingham are fantastic. Although it takes me 2 buses to get to work and 2 buses to get to uni, all buses are pretty regular, most of them running every 5-8 minutes during the week. I have never had to wait around long for a bus except for on a Sunday when they can be a little bit of a pain if you are going from one side of the city to the other. If I had been back home, it would take me hours to get to where I needed to be so here I am really thankful for being able to get around easily.
West Bridgford is the area of Nottingham where I live right now and I love it. The area, although a lot of students live here, is mostly residential and lovely and quiet. There isn't really ever any trouble here and it is more than safe to walk home at night. Not far from my house is West Bridgford town centre which has an Iceland and lots of lovely little small shops and cafes/ bars. On the other side of my house is a massive Asda superstore. This makes it extremely easy for me to go food shopping and also for me to go look at clothes. The clothes section in this shop is massive and they have a lot of choice, more than most Asdas I have been to.
So there you go, a few things that I love about the city and why I like living here!
I've lived in Nottingham for around 16 years now (with a small gap in between where I lived in Oxford). My parents were both in the Army, and as children my brother and I were constantly shifted about following my parents work - sometimes in Germany, sometimes in England, even once, for a brief period in Wales . When the time came for my dad to leave the Army (my mum left before him) my parents decided that since his parent's lives in Buckinghamshire and hers in Yorkshire, they would settle somewhere roughly halfway - Nottingham.
Roughly Halfway is a good way to describe Nottingham . It's residents will get incredibly upset if you refer to them as Southerners. We'll also get equally upset if you refer to us as 'Northern' though - I guess living in the Midlands we like our status of being neither one nor the other.
Like many regions, we have our own dialect, and it's important to learn a few words of the local language! I remember when I first moved here from Germany - the local kids were constantly greeting me with the words 'Ey oop!'. My mind tried to figure out what they meant, and the closest I could come up with was 'Aye Aye Captain '. I promptly decided that clearly everyone had a fascination with pirates, and proceeded to invite people to plunder my booty and swab my poop deck. Obviously, time living here has now taught me that 'Ey Oop!' is simply 'Hello'.
It's also worth noting that words ending in Y, for example 'Silly' tend to have the Y pronounched with an 'eh' sound . So, Silly becomes Silleh , Funny becomes Funneh. As an army brat that spoke queens english, I was relentlessly mocked upon moving here, but I've since picked up the lingo!
Other Nottinghamese that may be useful includes :
Oat : Anything
Noat : Nothing
Jiggadahn : Did you go to.... ?
Itwerr Krapp : I can't say that I found it entirely satisfactory.
Wezza Bog : Could you direct me to the nearest public convenience?
Mardi : Bad Tempered
Nottingham city centre itself has been tarted up with extensive regeneration projects in recent years, but none of this detracts from the fact that the city is surrounded by grotty council estates (I live on one) where half the windows are covered in iron grids and every street corner has a resident gang. Don't worry though, these 'gangs' are generally made up of several drunken 10 year olds who have managed to filch a few quid from the wallets of their mothers to obtain a bottle of Diamond White, and who have scavenged in the bins for dog ended cigarettes . Nottinghams council estates are as rough and shabby as council estates anywhere , but the city seems to lately have a bad reputation for gun and knife violence. I honestly don't think it's all as bad as it's painted, and although there are certain really 'rough' areas (all with deceptively sweet sounding names, like 'The Meadows' and 'St Anns') in most cases the nearest you'll come to a knife in your daily goings about will be asking the fishmonger in the market to fillet your bass for you .
I suppose you might want to know how to get here . Shouldn't be too hard, Nottingham has been around a while and can be found on most maps of the UK! We have a large train station in the city centre (as well as several others in Bulwell, Beeston and Hucknall to name but a few.) With being a major city, we're also pretty easy to get to by coach, with several different coach companies operating in and around Nottingham. For those of you coming from further afield, we also have an airport, formerly known as East Midlands, but recently renamed Nottingham East Midlands (Thumbs nose at Derby here in moment of immaturity!).And once you get here there are also several very reliable taxi companies, as well as regular local bus services .
If you want somewhere to stay, I have a spare bed, but I can't imagine welcoming many unsavoury dooyooers into my domain, so instead, I can tell you that there are several bed and breakfast places in the city centre, as well as some swankier hotels . Never having used any myself, I can't offer any particular recommendation, but there are plenty, and I'm sure the info is around somewhere .
Now, you're probably looking for things to do . Why not shop ? Nottingham is a brilliant place to shop. And I'll tell you why-whatever you want can be find if you look hard enough, be it a six foot vibrator or a pair of plimsolls, Nottingham has it all. It's also got loads of places to stop off for a drink and a nibble should you need a break, as well as many pedestrians areas to make shopping easier.
For shoppers we have everything.Versace, Armani, Ghost, Ralph Lauren, Prada, Karen Millen, Kookai, Jigsaw, Ted Baker and, of course, Paul Smith. As well as these, we have all the usual high street shops as well as a few more unusual stores tucked away.
Lets start with the Victoria Centre, the larger of the two main shopping centres in Nottingham. It has well over 120 stores under one roof, as well as a busy market. Some of the stores you will find here include Pumpkin Patch, a Tesco supermarket, House of Frazer and Jessops (John Lewis). I'll include a link to the website at the bottom of the page which will enable you to visit the Victoria Centre website. Also worthy of note in the Victoria centre is the Emmet Clock.
Not sure where you've heard of Emmet before? He created the car in chitty chitty bang bang, and his clock in the Victoria centre is just as fantastic a creation, with dancing animals, a fountain, and a performance every fifteen minutes. The centre has excellent disabled access, and a friendly and helpful customer service team located on the upper floor. Victoria Centre opening hours are as follows:
Tuesday 9.00 - 5.30
Wednesday 9.00 - 8.00
Thursday 9.00 - 5.30
Friday 9.00 - 5.30
Saturday 9.00 - 6.00
Sunday 10.00 - 5.00
Bank Holidays 10.30 - 4.30
The other main shopping centre in Nottingham is the Broad marsh Centre, located at the other end of the city near to the train station. It's smaller then the Victoria centre, but the range of shops is just as good. Again, many of the well-known high street names feature here, as well as a few more interesting individual stalls selling items such as chinese silk robes, overpriced manicure sets, and little japanese knick knacks. Particularly worthy of note in this venue are the toilets. No bog standard (pardon the pun) lavs these. After all, how many toilets do you know that offer a hairdryer and a shoeshine machine. Not to mention the family room, which has a television, microwave, steam steriliser, breastfeeding room and bottle warmer. The toilets here go that bit further.
Shopping hours are 9.00 to 5.30 Monday to Friday, and 11.00 to 5.00 on Sunday, and again individual shop opening times may vary.
Between these two shopping centres is the Market Square, where you can hop on a bus or a tram to take you to another area of the city. There are markets throughout the year, sometimes craft markets, at other times farmers markets, and if you ever see any stalls there it's well worth a look. I particularly like the German Market in November, which offers a wide selection of stalls selling everything from handmade candles and wooden toys, to potato latkes and Gluhwein. Also worth noting is the monthly farmers market, where free samples abound - they do soem lovely trout pate, and some excellent cakes . In addition to this, the square also plays host to festivals throughout the year, including the one world music festival, and the gamecity event .
Around the square are various shops, including.Debenhams, Shuh, Shakeaway and a few others. Also coming off the market square is Flying Horse Arcade, which houses some shops you won't see anywhere else, with my particular favourite being an amaxzing shop that sells cheese . Cheese is my biggest addiction, and my dream is to one day own my own cheesemonger shop (is cheesemonger a word?).
Across the road is The Exchange Arcade, with stunning painted ceiling and a range of exclusive shops, such as Gauntleys fine food and wine, and Atomic, which sells unusual gift items.
Also well worth a visit, especially for those people looking for something different, is the Lace Market/Hockley area which features a wide range of clothing and gift shops you wont find anywhere else, such as Jugglers (erm, juggling stuff) Ice Nine (unusual clothing, giftware, and magic mushrooms) and Void (Gothic clothing and Cyberwear).
You'll probably be tired from all this shopping, and might fancy a bite to eat of drink . Now, if you want a nice pint of beer and good old fashioned english grub, as well as a tourist treat, why not visit Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem. With a history dating back to 1189 , the year of Richard the Lionhearts ascension to the throne, it was named for the fact that soldiers departing for the crusades would often pop in here for a drink on the way to get rid of the heathens in the Holy Land. It also claims to be the oldest public house in the world, although there are some who will argue that as it was in fact a private alehouse for Nottingham castle when first built, this claim goes to another Nottingham pub, The Salutation.
There is even rumour that Robin Hood and his band were visitors! The pubs appearance from the outside is quite impressive. Appearing to be nestled snugly against the sandstone cliffs directly below Nottingham castle, the building is charming in design, with a whitewashed and timber framed exterior, complete with proud announcements of it's venerable age adorning the walls. It's in a beautiful part of Nottingham that has many old buildings, and as such almost feels as though you have stepped into a time long past. It also has a small grass area at the front, and the staff is happy to let you take your drinks out here in the summer to enjoy the sunshine.
Once inside, it's like entering a cave, which is exactly what it is. See, the pub is not nestling against the cliff but is in fact carved into it, so the small building you see from the outside is only a small amount of the pub itself.
There are five main drinking areas inside the pub, as well as an enclosed beer garden to the rear. There is a dedicated room for non-smokers, as opposed to merely the roped off area you get in some pubs.
My favourite room is the rock lounge upstairs, which is entirely carved out of sandstone, with an unusual vertical shaft going up into the cellars of Nottingham castle. This was used to haul beer up into the castle for Ye Olde Grande Drinking Session, in the days when the rock lounge was the malting room for the brewhouse.
The rock lounge also houses the pregnancy chair by the fireplace - legend says that if any female sitting in the chair will become pregnant . Having held my wedding reception at the trip and having sat in the chair in October 2002 - I duly produced a baby girl in July 2003 - spooky happenings or just lots of post-wedding bed related excercise ? You decide!
Decent brew is always on offer with Kimberly Bitter, Kimberly Mild, Best Bitter, Ye Olde Trip house brew, and usually two or three guest ales on at any time.
As well as this there are all the usual suspects on draught including Stella, Carling, Grolsch, Hoegaarden, Hardys & Hansons Cool / Dark, Guinness, Scrumpy Jack & Strongbow Ciders, as well as a selection of fine wines and the usual alcopops and spirits.
The pub also has a small cocktail menu, and a good selection of hot and cold soft drinks.
The pub has cask marque status, so you can be assured that your real ales are served to a decent standard. Food is general british fare - bangers and mash, steak and kidney pudding etc, but all produced to a high standard .
If you fancy something a little more exotic, and you're ona budget, you really can;t go wrong with the Big Wok on Upper Parliament Street . Yes, it is generally full of noisy stag and han parties, and I'll admit that you don't geta huge amount of one to one attention from the waiting staff, but for an all you can eat extravaganza, the value here is excellent, and they are very clean and child friendly. They have a wide range of dishes, with something gor everyone - the veggie, the spice lover, the pudding addict and even a few englishified dishes for the wimps .
When it gets around to nighttime, you might want to go for a bevvy . At this point, it's important to bear in mind that I'm not much a clubber, and I generally dress like a gothed up tramp, so my pubs and clubs of choice all have a goth/rocker kind of vibe to them . If you wanted somewhere classy - I was the wrong person to ask .
For pubs, I recommend the Tap and Tumbler, a scruffy pub complete with pool table that offers a decent range of drinks (although it fails on the real ales) and has no dress code . Its open late, and it's pretty cheap, and it alsohas the advantage of being right next door to nottinghams biggest rock club, Rock City , which also doubles as a gig venue .
Rock City plays rock music mainly . The clue is in the name. It is neither swanky or smart, although it does have podium dancers . Its the kind of place where your shoes stick to the floor, and where pints are served in plastic glasses . The bouncers are terrifying to look at, and they do rootle about in your bag looking for any dodgy substances, so be sure not to pack anything embarrasing. The club is fairly decent though, with three seperate music areas catering for a variety of tastes - rock, metal, indie, punk - it's all here!
If you want to do the tourist thing in Nottingham, avoid the castle, I have to say that as an avid reader of Robin Hood books, when I first saw the castle I cried . I was 11, admittedly, but for those of you imagining romantic ruins, it is a complete let down. The castle burnt down, and a big manor house was built on the site, which now operates as mainly an art museum .
Save your pennies instead for the Galleries of Justice, set inside the olf County Gaol (or Goal, as some incompetant stonemason has engraved on the building) where you can learn loads of interesting stuff about the british justice system, the burning of witches, and executions. Its a great museum to visit.
Also worth looking into is the City of Caves attraction, which can be found inside the broadmarsh centre and takes you into the many caves beneath Nottingham . Various costumed actors lead you through different time periods and uses of the caves, and it is all incredibly interesting, with re-enactments of bombing raids and the full sight and smell experience of a tannery.
Nottingham is well worth a visit . There is so much more I could have written, but I'm aware this review is already long. I've been here years, and there are still museums and attractions I have not yet seen, pubs I have never drunk in, and many restaurants where I have yet to eat. There is an awful lot here, and it is well worth a visit, and its also an amazing place to live!
http://www.victoria-centre-nottingham.co.uk/ for more info on victoria centre.
I have lived in Nottingham for a very long time 20+ years - so I should know it. I even moved back to Notty after spending a post grad year away. I do have mixed feelings about the place but I'll try to give you an idea.
Nottingham has a good transport system including a tram the runs from the outskirts (Hucknall) into the city. The disabled access on this tram is brilliant. I went on a trip with a lot of students with complex needs and they all fitted on to the tram in their wheelchairs. Buses are good but quite expensive. (£1.50 single for a short trip). In fact anywhere I've been in the world has cheaper buses than Nottingham! There is a special offer in school holidays where groups of people can travel together cheaper - this is a good job as a lone parent taking one or two kids out for the day would cost an arm and a leg otherwise.
The city is quite affluent ( with a few flashy apartments and expensive shops) but surrounding it are areas that have quite a degree of poverty; a doughnut of disadvantage is how I like to see it. I used to work on regeneration projects so I spent much time there. In fact I live on the edge of a 'disadvantaged area'. This is the source of many of the city's knife and gun problems - there are area gangs (two main ones I think). Having said this, I travel through one of those areas daily and never see any trouble. I drive through it at night and never see any trouble.
Some trouble that I did see was on the tv this morning; the police seemed to be repeatedly tasering a man on the floor. This was, however in the centre of the city outside the rather middle class Theatre Royal.
I move effortlessly on to this after leaving you with an image of Nottingham nocturnal fun. The city has the highest concentration of pubs and clubs in its city centre. This makes it an excellent night out for people who like to wear no clothes summer or winter because tottering from one pub to the next is easy - and there are millions doing just that at the weekend. At New Year, the place was full of nakedish people sitting and lying on the floor outside pubs (smoking, crying, laughing).
I expect it is also fairly easy to have a pub crawl if you are a wheelchair user as there are plenty of refurbished places with improved access all quite near to each other.
There are also a number of gay pubs and 1 club (NG1) which is frequented by plenty of straight people too. These pubs cater for differing groups within this (rainbow) umbrella - eg a pub for older gay guys, mainly lesbian pubs. Because the city is so compact, they are all within walking distance - allowing for a pub crawl of diversity.
The city has a great array of shops including some department stores: House of Fraser, Debenhams, John Lewis, Marks and Spencer. There is also a large indoor market in one of the two big shopping centres Broadmarsh and Victoria Centre. Victoria Centre has a large musical clock and fountain in a main area. Whenever I look at it I am reminded of a friend who hates it. He told me that if he ever found out that the world was going to end in X minutes he wouldn't waste his time having sex with someone - he would jump into the fountain and trash the clock big time.
The smaller shops are good - and many are situated down a small street called 'Bridlesmithgate'.
Fun in the City
This is a category as well as the pubs. There are four cinemas in Nottingham including the huge Cornerhouse Cinema. The one to write about though, is the award winning 'Broadway Cinema' which has a beautiful auditorium with sweeping pink curtains and deep,plush chairs that have dedications plaques on the back (inc people's weddings,memorials etc). The cinema shows general release films as well as more obscure films and foreign language films. It has great disabled access and a bar/cafe that serves veggie and vegan food as well.
There are a great variety of restaurants and cafes in the city, including several veggie/vegan cafes - probably the best known of these is the lovely 'Alley Cafe' situated up some stairs in a tiny alley just off the main Market Square (disabled access not that good in this one).
Nottingham also has a bowling rink and an ice rink that doubles up as a massive stadium for bands.
Nottingham hosts a number of festivals that attract hundreds/thousands of people.
Green Festival (beginning of June)
A festival for all thing ecological - stalls, picnic and bands in the park (it was fab)
Nottingham Pride (end of July)
Festival for lesbian, gay and transgendered people - stalls, picnic, bands in the park. This festival is heaving with people.
The Riverside Festival (beginning of August)
Music, stalls, fairground and fun by the side of the river Trent. There is a free, massive wonderful firework display that happens here in the evening.
The Splendour Festival (July/Aug)
Music festival in the grounds of Wollaton Hall. It costs about £15 to get in if you are a City resident.
Caribbean Carnival (August)
A carnival with stalls and bands in the forest ground park
Goose Fair (1st w/end in Oct)
Huge fair - rides and stalls.
Why I live here
I have lived here so long that I have friends that It would be terrible to leave. Honestly, I can say it is the comunity that keeps me here and not the actual city - but that is a pretty good thing to say of a place anyway.
I am aware that this is just a tiny snapshot of a complex city and that I will need to add to when I think of something that is desperately important. I hope it may be of use to you if you visit or are thinking of living here.
Nottingham is a compact city in the heart of the East Midlands of England. It is split into different residential areas set around the city centre.
When you mention Nottingham to people from elsewhere, four main things usually spring to their minds:
Yes, Nottingham was, according to legend, the home of the famous outlaw Robin Hood, and there are various tributes to him around the city, not least the statue shown in the photo above, which is actually outside Nottingham Castle.
Actually, Sherwood Forest, where he is alleged to have hailed from, is some miles away from Nottingham city, but let's not let that get in the way of a good story!
The (in)famous football manager who took Nottingham Forest through their glory years. Old Big 'ead is sadly no longer with us, and now has a stand named after him at the club's football ground, plus the main A52 dual carriageway between Nottingham and Derby has been renamed 'Brian Clough Way' and the city has a statue of him too.
"Torvill and Dean"
The gold-medal winning ice-skating duo did originally hail from Nottingham, and actually both have streets named after them in the very nice suburb of Wollaton.
The old ice-rink where they trained has long since been demolished, but in it's place is the Nottingham Trent FM Arena, where there is a fabulous public ice rink, plus it plays host to major name acts when they pass through Nottingham.
A couple of years ago, Nottingham was named by the font of all knowledge (Kirsty and Phil from Channel 4!) as the worst place to live in Britain , or something like that. This was apparently due to the high amount of crime, gang related activity and specifically gun crime in the city.
Admittedly there was a period of time when this was somewhat true, but it has improved vastly. I don't see Nottingham and the surrounding area as worse than any other area of Britain!
The city centre has been cleaned up a lot, and lately it feels a lot safer.
There are two main indoor shopping centres, plus many other shopping areas and streets in between them. All the usual shops have branches in Nottingham. The Broadmarsh Shopping Centre is unusual in that it has a tourist attraction underneath it: The Nottingham Caves.
It only takes you around 15 minutes to walk between the two main centres if you walk direct, which is great.
Currently there is a tourist attraction on the Old Market Square called the Nottingham Eye, a scaled-down version of the London Eye. I went on this last year, it was a bit expensive at £5.00 per person, and was just like riding a giant ferris wheel.
Five minutes away from the Old Market Square, is Nottingham Castle, a fantastic structure with a museum inside. This is free to Nottinghamshire residents, and is a general museum and art gallery, with some really interesting works and pieces inside.
Due to the presence of two universities, Nottingham stays fresh because there is a new influx of faces every year - to cater for the students, there are hundreds of bars and nightclubs and Nottingham has a great nightlife: I have had many a fab night out here!
House prices are reasonable, and the position of Nottingham smack bang in the centre of England, plus proximity to the M1, means it's a great location, location, location. Don't listen to those stupid TV programmes!
I've been to Nottingham a fair few times, having lived in Leicester for a few years, they're so close to each other, it's nice to be able to visit other places, and Nottingham was one of my favourites. The city centre is vibrant and fresh, with a great nightlife and a large selection of shops and bars to frequent. the transport links are pretty good, with a tram service throughout the city. they have an icerink, which is great, where they also hold lots of gigs and events.
i like the feel of Nottingham, it had a really happy feel to it, with plenty of people around and a good mix of old and new, with generic shops and local shops mixing well. the nightlife is good, with plenty of pubs and good places to eat in the centre, and a cinema right in the centre as well. the parking can be a bit of a nightmare, and most of it is multistorey, but it''s certainly worth a visit if you've never been.
[Originally posted on www.helphound.com]
Nottingham has a really bad reputation for gun crime, burglary and crime in general in the UK. However, I lived there for three years and in my opinion, as long as you don't do anything silly like wander round round in the dark on your own in the middle of the night, or get involved with a gang, you'll be fine!
Like any other city, there are parts which are nice and expensive and parts which are quite scummy (admittedly near the city centre it is mainly the latter). However, for a day trip there is quite a lot to see and do.
A few miles out is Sherwood Forest, home to the legendary Robin Hood. You'll need a car to get there but it's a nice place to walk around. I think there's also a Center Parcs around there somewhere.
In the city itself there is Nottingham Castle, which is small but worth a look. Often in the summer and early autumn they stage plays just outside it and serve food. This is particularly nice for outdoor performances of A Midsummer Night's Dream, for example, as it gets dark in the play the same as it gets dark outside. There's also a museum near the castle, and lots of special events for kids.
Connected to one of Nottingham's shopping centres, rather weirdly, are Nottingham's caves. They also have a small gift shop. I've never been to them so I can't comment on how good they are...!
On Saturdays there is a market in the square, if you go near Christmas it's the German/French Christmas market and often outdoor ice skating. At other times of the year it's much smaller and focuses on food from the local area and Leicestershire.
In October every year is the Goose Fair, as written about by D. H. Lawrence. This is a big fun fair on the Nottingham Forest football ground and it has lots of stalls and things to buy (craft and home stuff as well as tacky and sticky treats). It lasts for 3 days.
Even if you just fancy a walk there is Wollaton Park, which is quite unusual as it was deer that roam around. There's also the Hall you can visit if you're into that kind of thing. There's also a nice walk down the canal, particularly on summer afternoons and evenings when you can stroll past all the boats and then sit by the canal at the Exchange and enjoy something to eat and drink.
Generally I think that people are turned away from Nottingham by its reptuation, but it's a lovely place to visit with excellent transport links and a good day out for all.
I have moved about 20 times in my life, or once every two years on average and that includes my early years in England, most of my adult life in Scotland, apart from a couple of years in Australia, and for the last few years I have lived in the East Midlands in the village of East Bridgford, Notts.
Thanks to the plethora of programs on TV about the best and worse places to live in Britain, you could be forgiven for assuming that the whole of Nottinghamshire was rough, with modern day highwaymen brandishing knives and guns. In fact where I live now is the nicest place I have ever lived in my life, by far (including those two years having to stare at Sydney Harbour and Bridge every morning..!)
I moved into the village just two years ago now - having spent almost a year house-hunting - well deciding where to live when you are moving to an area you don't know is a challenge in itself. We needed to be within a commute of the city centre for my husband's job, although I had negotiated to work at home with my then employer, as I was road based, using Matlock Bath as a base, so we were able to look far and wide. In the event we looked as far north as Matlock Bath, as well as West Bridgford nr the City Centre, and as far apart as Grantham, Newark on Trent and even Melton Mowbray. We soon decided that one of the Eastern villages on the Nottingham - Grantham route would be most ideal for us. In fact, we could not have picked a better location, as I left that job after a year and had to commute to Grantham, then I left that and now commute 20 miles north of Lincoln (which itself is only 35 minutes away by car)
Anyway East Bridgford. The town itself is situated just off the A46 which is the old Roman Road, which is as straight as a poker and runs from Lincoln across country through Newark, Leicester and Cheltenham. In the late 17th century much of the parish belonged to Magdalen College, Oxford.
Our nearest town is the Market town of Bingham about three miles away, a pretty town with enough shops for every day living and on the Nottingham train line. In the other direction 3miles we have Lowdham, a village bigger than East Bridgford, which has an annual book fair and came under attack from the floods in 2007.
East Bridgford has two main roads which run through it - one connects the A46 to the Trent at Gunthorpe and the other links the B6097 Doncaster road back to the village of Kneeton and the A46 further up towards Newark. These roads cross in the village centre, and it is a pretty walk down to the Trent at Gunthorpe where several riverside pubs, a coffee shop and restaurants are vibrant during the summer months. There is still some industry alongside the river here, including chandlery, and the seams of gypsum are clearly visible in the rock. The water at the weir is recognised as a potential source of power generation, and we have a local committee who are actively pursuing opportunities to develop and distribute electricity to the local area and onto the national grid.
The houses on the Kneeton Road are predominantly of a medieval construction, with long thin plots on either side of the road, and the gable ends of the properties face the roadside. Much of the property and area is in fact a listed area, and it should be. As you wander down to the river you come across the site of the old motte and bailey castle that used to exist here. The water's edge is busy with walkers, fishermen and ramblers, as well as families and even bikers in the summer months.
East Bridgford is a village with a population of just 1800 people and there is a mixture of newer housing behind the older housing on the main streets. However despite its small size, there is a huge amount of activity going on!
The primary school is probably the best in Nottinghamshire and consistently achieves OFSTED excellent ratings. The Headmaster is very much involved in the local community particularly with the organisation of the annual East Bridgford Village Show which is part of "Feast Week", a week long program of local activity culminating in a celebration on the village's playing fields. There are frequent flyovers by the red arrows and other flights of mention as they head back to RAF Scampton near Lincoln. The school has other claims to fame however - one of its dinner ladies was fed up with serving junk food to children so she single handedly set about reforming the menu by sourcing local suppliers - indeed the original "Dinner Lady" years before Jamie Oliver's program although he has now endorsed her book. At school parents can join in with the kids and eat lunch there if they so wish. This is not however the only claim to fame for a small village, in fact the first video recorder was actually invented here (and evidence of this is in Wollaton Hall in Nottingham)
There are two pubs in the village, as well as the pubs and restaurants lower down on the banks of the Trent. The Reindeer Inn is the nicer pub in my opinion (but then it's too convenient for me), and it serves fantastic home cooked cuisine in its cosy restaurant. This pub follows the medieval structure of the other homes on Kneeton Road and adjoins the "reindeer fields" behind. The area is still very much used for local farming, and if you want fresh eggs then you can get them here. Last night they even had local "Gloucester Old Spot" pork roast on the menu....born in East Bridgford. The locals are very friendly, far more so than any other "local" pub I have been in - in fact I had a hard job keeping my Dad out at Christmas time, particularly as it is rather too close to my house for comfort. The Reindeer hosts an annual bonfire night celebration, which I have to confess I don't attend, as the view is better from my top bedroom across the street! During the summer the beer garden is fully occupied, and most weekends have an outdoor act providing entertainment.
There are no end of clubs and societies within the village, and there is no excuse to say there is nothing to do. The village magazine is delivered by hand once a month, and this is probably the easiest way to find out about what is going on. Active clubs include the Historical Society (who supervised a dig on Pancake Hill, the site of the old Castle), the Bridge club, Art Society, Drama groups, WI, lifeboat guild, and Men's society (although I find they have some of the most interesting talks about village life and society!). The historical society have produced a sizeable hardback book of the area.
There are two churches in the village, St Peter's CofE and the Methodist Church. St Peter's is at the crossroads in the village and it really is quite a special place, its graveyard spilling down the road towards the Trent.
In terms of facilities, as well as the two pubs and two churches and school there is the WI hut, a post office and general store, a hairdressers, the marina, a newsagent and a very well equipped and modern health centre including a pharmacy.
Perhaps surprisingly, as I guess I am in an industry which forces travel, some 25% of residents make their living here or within five miles (which can only include Bingham, Lowdham and perhaps Radcliffe on Trent). There are plenty of people who have their own business and work from home, and many residents have lived here for years and years, moving within the village as their circumstances changed. The last time my home changed hands before 2006 when I bought it was sometime in the 1950s I think!
The village is Nottinghamshire's representative in the 2008 Village of the Year competition and judges will visit the village in May.
When I first came to the village, to look externally at the house I now own, I did say to my husband that I would buy the house without even looking inside. Two years later and I would probably say the same thing - it really is a special place to live.
Before you read this review, it is important to note that I was born and bred in Nottingham but I have tried to avoid being biased at all costs.
Many people tag Nottingham as being the 'Gun capital of the UK' and the city was recently ranked 6th in the top ten list of 'worst places to live in the UK'. All I can say is that this is not my experience. I love living here and in this review I will detail some of the reasons why.
The city boasts two football league teams - Notts County and Nottingham Forest, an Ice Hockey team in the form of the Nottingham Panthers and the current County Cricket champions Nottinghamshire, who play at the test ground Trent Bridge which was home to part of the Ashes triumph last summer.If you wish to watch sport in this city, there is a wide variety to choose from but if your tastes are a little more extreme there is the Home Pierepont Water sports centre where you can take part in white water rafting or canoeing.
Nottingham has two main shopping centres - Victoria Centre and the Broad Marsh Centre. In addition to this there is outdoor high street shopping. All the major high street chains are situated in these 3 areas and there are also various out of town retail parks which house companies such as Next, Ikea and PC World. If there is something worth buying, you're sure to find it somewhere in Nottingham. The downside to this of course is that you find that shoppers from all over the East Midlands flock to Nottingham so it does get busy at peak times e.g. the run up to Christmas
The variety of the nightlife of Nottingham stands it apart from many UK cities. There are over 700 pubs and clubs around the city so you're sure to find something that matches your tastes. If its Rock music you're into, I recommend visiting Rock City on Talbot Street, who have hosted many top bands including the Arctic Monkeys. You will find that there are many different types of bar and its worth asking people around the city where the best places to go are because everyone will have a different opinion. Most late bars and clubs are open till 2am so there's plenty of time to get drunk! If you're just after a nice meal, there are many different cuisines to choose from including Thai and Turkish. The Pierre Victoire French restaurant on Milton Street is my personal favourite. Like the problems with the shopping though, the pubs and clubs can get overcrowded at the weekends.
EVENTS AND SHOWS
There are three main theatres in Nottingham - The Playhouse, The Royal Concert Hall and The Theatre Royal, both of which show excellent musicals, comedy acts, pantomimes and educational events. In addition to this, The Natinal Ice Arena hosts many international acts like Elton John and Eric Clapton.
The Broad Marsh and Victoria Centre shopping centres both house bus stations which allows easy access to the shops from people coming into the city. The new Tram system is now up and running and has been a massive success. It is very quick and easy to hop across the other side of town as the trams run about every 7 minutes and is also part of the park and ride facility. If you prefer travelling by car, again the two shopping centres have big car parks and there are various others dotted around the city. Don't leave your car on double yellow lines though as the city is swarming with traffic wardens!
CULTURE AND HISTORY
Although Nottingham is a thriving, fast paced city, there are mny secluded cultural aspects of the area as well. In the city centre, the world famous Robin Hood can be visited and studied at both Nottingham Castle and Sherwood Forest and there is the Lace and Galleries of Justice museums. The Park and Ride site in the city is home to the annual Goose Fair event which is one of the world's biggest fun fairs with literally hundreds of rides and attractions. A bit further afield, you can visit Newstead Abbey which is reputed to be haunted by 3 different ghosts and Wollaton Hall, which has a golf course, museum, childrens park and gardens and so provides fun for all the family.
There are two Moat Houses, a Holiday Inn and the Hotel Britannia placed right in the city centre if you are staying here for the weekend to name but a few. These are massive chanins that host hundreds of rooms and there are also many smaller chains, should you want that personal feel.
It is true that there are some areas of the city that are socially deprived, but there are various regeneration projects going on and that should not put people off from visiting this multi-cultural, lively city, that has plenty to offer it's visitors
I thought it was time to tell you a little more about the city where I live. If I were to mention Robin Hood, that gangster in tights, you would probably immediately think of Nottingham. Although well known for its ties with this legendary hero Nottingham has much more to offer than just its famous outlaw. Positioned right in the heart of the East Midlands, Nottingham once boasted one of the finest lace and textile industrial areas in the country. Nottingham lace is still sold in the markets today and the city is very proud of its lace market area which is now a buzzing cultural and educational centre full of museums and stylish office blocks. Historically Nottingham has many claims to fame. High on a cliff top overlooking the city is Nottingham castle. Once the home of royalty, Nottingham castle now houses a museum and an art gallery. Admission is free during the week, with a small charge on weekends.Outside the castle is a big bronze statue of Mr Hood himself. Over the years I can't count the times someone has stolen the poor mans bow and arrow. I think it's welded on now. Round the corner from our noble castle is Ye old Trip to Jerusalem, thought to be the oldest pub in England this tiny tavern is built into the side of the cliff that holds up Nottingham castle. Reputedly haunted this is a great place to call into on hot summer day. This is not the only place that is supposed to be haunted and ghost walks are held every Saturday night around the city. Next door to the pub is The Brewhouse Yard museum. Here we are transported back in time to the second world war. Here you get a real taste of life years ago with displays of the shops, the toys and the whole way of life during the war. Down below in the caves you get a real feel of what life was like for the people as you get to visit one of the shelters that were used in an air raid emergency. Again as with most of the museums in Nottingham there is no admission charge during the week
but a small charge is made weekends and bank holidays. Nottingham is built over an impressive underground cave system and many of these are open to the public. The Broadmarsh caves, situated in the Broadmarsh shopping centre are a popular tourist attraction and are open all year around. If museums aren't your thing, Nottingham is a great place to shop boasting two indoor shopping centres. The smaller of the two, The Broadmarsh Centre is home to Argos, Alders,British Home Stores and nearby is good old Marks and Spencer's. The Victoria centre has over 120 shops and is visited by over 22 million customers every year. Some of the top retail stores can be found here as well as many speciality stores. River Island, House of Frazer, Boots, John Lewis, Next,to name but a few. There is also a huge indoor market and a meat and fish market. With an abundance of eating and meeting places the Victoria Centre is a shoppers paradise. We tend to avoid it of a weekend as it can get really busy. At christmas time the centre is always beautifully decorated and many people trundle in with their children to look at the sights. There are over 2,700 parking spaces situated under the centre so you shouldn't have a problem parking. There are three park and ride schemes in operation, the nearest being situated at the Forest Recreation ground about 5 minutes ride from the city centre. We personally never use them as we tend to avoid town of a weekend and there are always plenty of spots to park in the week. There are two MacDonald's in the city centre as well as Pizza Hut, Kentucky fried chicken and Burger King. Between the two centres there are some really great stores including Lush, Littlewoods and many more. Right in the centre of the city is the Old Market Square. Once the home of Nottingham's infamous Goose Fair this actually one of the biggest market squares in the country. Towering over the square is the
counc il house with its domed tower housing 'Little John' the clock whose chimes can be heard all over the city. Talking of the council house, not only does Nottingham appoint a mayor every year, we also get a new sheriff of Nottingham. (We haven't had one as bad as the one in the fables yet.)There are fountains in the square. Very often you go and find the square full of bubbles because someone has poured a box of wash powder into them overnight. We must have the cleanest pigeons in the country. Night time in Nottingham is as cultured or as wild as you want it to be. There are over 120 pubs and some fantastic night clubs. There is the famous Palais. This club has been here since the dance hall days but don't worry that it might be a bit long in the tooth, The Palais has a state of the art music and laser lighting system and is definitely the place to be. We have our own Jumping Jaks, Jongleurs Comedy Club next to the canal side and Oasis on the outskirts of the city rocks.For those of you into the rock scene there are some great gigs at Nottingham's Rock City. Oh, and apparently in Nottingham there are 5 girls to every guy. So your chances of pulling have to be good. Nottingham tends to serve the entire East Midlands' gay community and pubs like The Ice Bar and clubs like NG1 are popular attractions. We have restaurants to suit every taste and nationality. A big favourite has to be Antibos. This Italian restaurant has a buy one get one free policy in the week and makes for a cheap night out and is situated right in the centre of town, close to The Palais. The Mogal-E-Asam is a famous Indian restaurant in the city centre. Close to the Theatre Royal this quaint little place has a wall full of the stars that have eaten there over the years. Mark and I ate there once. Unfortunately I was so drunk I can't remember what I ate or what it was like. I know it was expensive though because Mark moaned for day
s afterwar ds. Many of the cinemas in Nottingham are alas no more and many shed a tear as The Odeon closed its doors for the last time. We now have Warner Village and of course Showcase, situated on the outskirts of the city close to Megabowl. Although Nottingham is home to the Theatre Royal and around the corner the beautiful Royal Concert Hall, we didn't tend to attract the big names in the world of Rock and Pop due to the venues being slightly small. This was not always true though, Tina Turner, Elton John and the Kids from Fame have all played at the Royal. All this has changed however with the opening of the The Nottingham Ice arena which is not only a great place to skate and home of the famous ice hockey team the Nottingham Panthers, it also doubles as a fantastic venue for concerts. Gemma went to see the Smash Hits tour there last year and saw some really great bands. Nottingham is of course the home of two football teams. Nottingham Forest and Notts County. Both grounds are quite close together situated alongside the river Trent. Of course I couldn't mention that part of Nottingham without mentioning Trent Bridge Cricket ground where many a test match has been played and lost. If you are looking for a place to stay Nottingham has loads of Bed and Breakfast places to choose from as well as two Holiday Inns in the city centre. If you are looking for somewhere a little more special then the Nottingham Moat House on Mansfield Road or the Royal Moat house on Wollaton Street really are the bees knees for comfort. Transport in Nottingham is abundant. The bottle green City transport buses have routes that cover most of the city and the easily recognised City Taxi's can be hailed from anywhere in the city. They are expensive though. Nottingham has just the one train station but many of the areas surrounding the city have their own station s too so it is actually quite easy to get out an
d a bout. P arking is fairly priced but there are often queues in the city centre on a Saturday. Disabled parking is free as long as you are a badge holder and wheelchair hire and assistance can be accessed in the Victoria Centre car par which runs the mobility scheme.( If you ring ahead you can book a parking spot too) We do have a one way system that operates in the city centre. It can be confusing. (It's nothing compared to Birmingham though!) Driving around the city centre will be more of a problem soon as Nottingham will be opening it's Tramway's in the very near future. These high tech transporters are going to cause chaos I can tell you and have been a bone of contention in this fair city since work started on them a good few years ago. Nottingham is infamous for its roadworks and the city centre is full of them at the moment. I would advise you tune your radio to TrentFM (96FM) as you enter the city, they have regular traffic bulletins and they also give out parking information too. There you have it. Nottingham is a great place to visit. Business is booming and this is evident in the number of regeneration projects that are being set up all over the city. Nottingham has it's beauty spots too though. There is nothing nicer on a hot day than a stroll by the river Trent or a walk in the Grounds of Wollaton Hall. For the more adventurous of us The National Water sports Centre at Holme Pierpoint, with its white water rapids and raft building is a fun day out. Nottingham racecourse hosts some of the best flat racing on the calender and those that haven't had enough after a flutter on the gee gees can go to the dogs at the stadium next door. Nottingham is a great place to live and a great place to visit. Give us a try, I know you will like it here.
~ History ~ Nottingham is the principal city of Nottinghamshire and the county is divided by the RIVER TRENT, which for centuries also was the dividing point of the nation. The first mention of Nottingham itself was in the Anglo-Saxon chronicles of AD 867 when it was then known at Snotengaham. The actual shire of Nottingham was created in the 10th century and was raised to county status by King Henry VI in 1448. During the civil war, Charles I chose here to raise his standard; probably due to the towns past record for defending the monarchy. However the call to arms received a poor response and as soon as the King had marched away the town became a Parliamentarian stronghold. To begin with, Nottinghams prosperity rested largely on the River Trent and its main crossing point TRENT BRIDGE. Not only was it the perfect way to get goods in and out of the town, but also it was an opportunity to raise revenue by charging tolls. The earliest industries were coal, wool dyeing and brewing. By the mid 18th century Nottingham also had a thriving textile and lace industry. Over the last century or more three large companies have dominated Nottingham; Boots The Chemists, Players and Raleigh Cycles. ~ City layout ~ Nottinghams city centre area is pretty compact with everything within easy walking distance. Dominated by the castle on its rocky outcrop to the west, the city centre mainly runs from the Victoria Shopping Centre at the north to the Broadmarsh Centre to the south. Most streets running between both Shopping Centres are pedestrianised which makes shopping in Nottingham such a pleasant and pleasing experience! In the centre of all this is a large open space, the OLD MARKET SQUARE, affectionately known to us locals as Slab Square. Bordered by shops on three sides and the imposing edifice that is the COUNCIL HOUSE on the other and with its twin fountains, fabulous summer time floral displays and seating ar
eas, makes this a very amenable place to just watch the world go by. ~ Shopping ~ Nottingham has, so I am reliably told by one online site, over 800 shops although I have to say Ive never counted them! Whether its a large department store youre looking for, or a well-known high street name or even a small and specialist retailer, Nottingham has something for you. The VICTORIA CENTRE (the Viccy), which was opened in the early 1970s on the site of Nottinghams old Victoria railway station, is on two floors and was recently extended. It houses two department stores; House of Fraser and John Lewis, many high street chain stores (Smiths, Top Shop, Next, Mothercare, Disney, MVC) and two Boots shops; one of which is the largest in the country. At one end is a fountain/clock that plays a cute little tune each hour and has practically become a tourist attraction in its own right. The VICTORIA MARKET (full integrated into the shopping centre) is the place to go for all your typical market stall bargains, NOTTINGHAM LACE and is a cheap and cheerful place to sit and have a cup of coffee in one of its many cafes. The BROADMARSH CENTRE is also on two floors but isnt as big as its older cousin. However plans have been released that will make it overshadow the Viccy Centre as its apparently going to at least double in size! It also has its own department store, Allders, and an array of high street names including BHS, Hobbycraft, Poundstretcher, Wilkinsons and Thorntons. By the main entrance here is a large open area that contains a branch of Café Delifrance and to be honest thats the only halfway decent place to grab a drink and a sit down here. With so many streets in the city centre that are pedestrianised, theres more to shopping here than just in those two centres. Debenhams is on the Market Square as is Littlewoods; and CLUMBER STREET has a vast array of smaller shops including Lush, Superdrug and H. Samuels. Both the FL
YING HOR SE WALK (an old pub) and EXCHANGE ARCADE (under the council house) house exclusive and designer boutiques that are well worth a look as long as money is no object to you! When here the LACE MARKET/HOCKLEY area shouldnt be missed for its smaller "trendy" shops, unique outlets and eateries. ~ Tourist attractions ~ The CASTLE gatehouse and walls are all original and medieval but the original castle was destroyed by fire at the end of the civil war. In its place was built a "ducal" palace that is now a museum housing some fine exhibits from Nottinghams past and it also has fine and contemporary art displays. The castle grounds are all landscaped and offer some spectacular views over the city and for miles beyond on a good clear day. Just outside the castle gates is a statue of ROBIN HOOD, which has to be the most photographed object in the city. Opposite this statue is the SEVERNS BUIDING, which is probably Nottinghams oldest building and is another good place to buy official NOTTINGHAM LACE. Below the castle rock is the BREWHOUSE YARD MUSEUM which houses some excellent exhibits tracing Nottingham life back through the ages. This is the place to come for examples of more everyday items all set within groups to put them into context. This museum also has very knowledgeable guides but unfortunately isnt wheelchair/pushchair friendly. A minutes walk from the castle brings you to the MUSEUM OF COSTUME AND TEXTILE. This charts fashion changes down the years and shows the importance of the textile industry to Nottinghams heritage. The TALES OF ROBIN HOOD, (a two minute walk away from the castle) on Maid Marion Way is a ride through medieval history during which you get to experience the sights, sounds and smells of life all those years ago. Underneath many of the streets of Nottingham especially around the castle and Broadmarsh are CAVES; over 400 hundred of them in total. Some of them
are accessibl e from the first floor of the Broadmarsh Centre and the tour takes you through caves used as tanneries, air raid shelters and Victorian slums. Not all caves are available for viewing; some are classed as being unsafe and others are still in use under the citys many pubs! A short walk across the city centre brings you to the old SHIRE HALL, which has now been turned into the GALLERIES OF JUSTICE. Here you can learn practically all there is to know about the British justice system through the ages; from the gallows out in the courtyard, the Victorian courtroom, the County Goal and right through to modern crime scene investigations. Nearby, in the LACEMARKET area is the MUSEUM OF LACE. Nottingham paved the way in lace making machines, which took the production out of the cottages and into factories and the history is shown here. The scientist George Green is remembered at GREENS MILL in Sneinton, which is a working windmill that he once owned and it is now a science centre. Once a year, during the first week in October, Nottingham hosts the GOOSE FAIR, the largest travelling fair in Europe. Its basically a convergence of lots of smaller fairs that all come together in Nottingham for their end of year finale. Now held on THE FOREST on Mansfield Road (a 10 minute walk from the city centre heading north) its a 3-day extravaganza of lights, noise, big rides and side shows. Its name dates back centuries from when an annual farmers fair was held in the market square. Nowadays its one place where asking for a cock-on-a-stick wont get you slapped... ~ Parks and green spaces ~ In total, within the city boundary are 32 parks and gardens so its just not possible to list them all here along with their various attributes so I will just stick to the two most popular and well known ones… To the south west of the city centre is WOLLATON HALL and its surrounding PARKLAND. Designed by Robert Smythson an
d built in 1588 it is now the home to the citys NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM. The stables are home to the INDUSTRIAL MUSEUM, the STEAM ENGINE HOUSE and the VISITORS CENTRE. Set in 500 acres of lush green grass with its own lake and free roaming deer, Wollaton Hall makes an excellent place to spend a day away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre. The ARBOURETUM slightly to the north of the city centre was opened in 1852 following the Enclosures Act (1845) deemed all towns and cities needed public garden spaces. Its currently Grade II listed and contains a bandstand, small lake, aviaries as well as various themed-planted borders. This is a popular spot for the citys business folk taking lunchtime break in the summer as well as for families who just fancy a breath of fresh air whilst staying in the heart of Nottingham. ~ Sports ~ Nottingham is of course home to two football clubs, NOTTS COUNTY and NOTTINGHAM FOREST. With County playing at Meadow Lane on the Northern bank of the Trent and Forests City Ground directly opposite them on the southern bank these two teams are as close as two teams could be placed in a city. Notts County are the oldest surviving club in the football league and the rivalry between the two clubs is as fierce today as it ever was, their proximity is about the only thing thats close with them! If soccer isnt your thing, then theres always the RUGBY club, or you can watch Nottinghamshire CRICKET club playing their games at TRENT BRIDGE which of course attracts Test Matches. If neither of those appeals then you could try the RACECOURSE out at Colwick (an eastern suburb) where you can watch horseracing or greyhound racing, or you could watch the slalom canoeists and the rowers at the NATIONAL WATERSPORTS CENTRE at Home Pierpoint. If youre more of a hands-on sort of person you can ice skate at the brand spanking new NOTTINGHAM ICE CENTRE, which is part of the new NOTTINGHAM ARENA. Here you
can also watch speed sk ating and the NOTTINGHAM PANTHERS, our ice hockey team. Just round the corner is the 10 pin bowling centre which also has a bar and café. At the TENNIS CENTRE there is an international tournament in the week before Wimbledon and its also now one of the top training centres in the country. Nottingham of course boasts plenty of LEISURE CENTRES most of which have swimming pools. Nothing Olympian naturally but all of them family friendly, especially the one at RUSHCLIFFE that is more like a fun park! ~ Cinema/theatres/concerts~ Following what seems to be a national trend, Nottingham now only has one small cinema showing the latest releases (The Savoy on Derby Road). To watch an up to date movie you have two choices. You can go to the new WARNER VILLAGE complex in the city centre or to the SHOWCASE out at Clifton. Small budget and foreign films are shown at the BROADWAY MEDIA CENTRE, again in the city centre. For theatre goers theres the old THEATRE ROYAL with its white pillared exterior and multi-tiered plush interior, the PLAYHOUSE which is a far more modern building and the LACE MARKET THEATRE which shows modern and contemporary dramas. There are three primary concert venues in the city. The oldest is the ALBERT HALL with its old multi-piped organ, which is used primarily for classical concerts and choral events. The ROYAL CENTRE hosts larger classical concerts, comedy evenings and for many years pop and rock concerts. It has now been overshadowed by the NOTTINGHAM ARENA, which has seating for 8,000 and now holds all major gigs with the capacity to attract the biggest names in the music industry. ~ Pubs/clubs/restaurants ~ Nottingham has hundreds of pubs and bars ranging from the very plain to modern and to the most upmarket so there really should be something there to suit everyones tastes! Yes there are gay pubs and clubs too so theres absolutely no excuse for anybody not
to have a good night out! I know that Nottingham has become synonymous with trouble at night fuelled by drink, but that is isolated to the city centre at weekends and with a population of around 50,000 students then things have always been lively anyway. The city boasts a wide range of restaurants from traditional British fare to many other nationalities. Theres also a wide range of price options, from the cheap and cheerful to the very posh and exclusive. Nottingham also boasts what is believed to be the oldest inn in England and its claim is certainly world famous. YE OLDE TRIP TO JERUSALEM dates from 1189, the same year Richard the First was crowned and its name is probably connected with the fact that Richard made the third crusade to the Holy Land. In those days a "trip" meant a resting place on a journey and as the castle on the rock above was a royalist stronghold, the inn was a break point in the journey to Jerusalem; hence the TRIP to Jerusalem. ~ Transportation ~ Getting around Nottingham and its suburbs is made easy with its excellent public transport system. From rail to buses, park and ride to the soon to be opened first tram line and to the local airport Nottingham seems to be light years apart from other large cities with its integrated transport network. CITY TRANSPORT buses are the main operator for all services within the city boundaries and TRENT & BARTON buses serve the outlying towns and villages of Nottinghamshire as well as further afield into Derbyshire and even up to Manchester. The city centre has two BUS STATIONS. The VICTORIA BUS STATION is a plastic and glass modern affair built to replace the old one when the Shopping Centre was extended. This station serves mainly Trent/Barton buses that stay within the shire boundaries. The BROADMARSH BUS STATION is a dark and dingy affair underneath the Shopping centre car park. This again serves Trent buses that mainly travel further afi
eld and is also the central point for all NATIONAL EXPESS services. The TRAIN STATION, a couple of minutes walk from the Broadmarsh has 6 platforms and has recently been cleaned up and refurbished. CENTRAL TRAINS are the main operators from here and offer regular services to as diverse destinations as Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham, Skegness, Norwich and Worksop (on the re-opened Robin Hood Line). MIDLAND MAINLINE is the company that run trains to London. They offer an hourly high-speed service to the capital as well as an hourly slower service. The high-speed version furnished by Intercity 125 trains makes the journey in around an hour and a half. The City Council runs 4 park-and-ride schemes across Nottingham allowing car drivers to park their cars safely outside the main city centre and then travel in on buses. The cost for this is by the carload and varies from £1.50 to £2.50. The car parks for this are all security conscious and problems are rare. Rarer still are problems with the cities many car parks for those who want to bring their cars right into the centre. Charges are reasonable to high but most of the car parks make shopping easy as they are positioned around the shopping centres. 2003 is the year of the tram for Nottingham with the first line of the NET network due to open in November. NET stands for Nottingham Express Transit and this first line will run from the railway station up to Hucknall. Much disruption has been caused with the construction work over the last few years but now the final touches are being put in place and soon the lines will be powered up and testing will begin. ~ Accommodation ~ Nottingham has accommodation to suit everyone’s budgets. Theres everything here from a backpackers hostel to small family run guesthouses; and from larger hotels to known chains like Holiday Inn and Hilton. Further out of the centre there are also several campsites and theres always Centr
e Parks…. Hopefull y this guide to my hometown has given you all an insight into the place that is fast becoming much maligned in the press. Ive lived here for my entire 35 years on this earth and I love it! Nottingham has plenty to offer visitors whether they are of the day trip variety or for people who want to base their holidays here. We certainly do well tourist wise with many thousands of overseas visitors flocking here each year, in particular Americans and the Japanese. If you do decide to pass by and take a look, please remember that there is way more to my town than Robin Hood!
The best all-round city in England. The Midlands reputation as 'boring' *again* proved wrong... - Advantages: great architecture and townscapes, superb shopping, vibrant nightlife - in fact vibrant full stop - Disadvantages: that huge modern building on top of the shopping centre at the start of Mansfield Road - ugly as sin, but that's all
I lived in Nottingham for 30 years, the town centre is great the shops are great, loads of things to do BUT I lived in Aspley loads of boy racers, loads of breakins, loads of teenage thugs. You know it bad when the police have no go zones in your area, they wont chase the boy racers incase they cause a accident. You leave your car on the street outside your house and they stick a screwdrive in your tyre (might be because my cars not worth nicking) might be because they have nothing better to do. I have children who would not go out at to play after school because of the other kids/teenages on the street. We had the local dealer living across the road, cars coming and going all day and night. One of my children was due to go to the local senior school next September there GCSE result have just been published they are one of the bottom 5 in the country. After 30 years in Nottingham i packed my bags, quit my job, sold my house and moved South. My children are happy, they play out every night, i havent heard a boy race, regular police patrols, great schools, and a peacefull life. We only moved a few weeks ago but i can tell it was the best thing we ever did.
Ah, yet another misconception about Nottingham! Usual comments when I tell people where I live are “yes, I know it, it where Robin Hood comes from” and “Wicked three birds to every bloke there” Well yes Robin Hood is supposedly from Nottingham, Nottinghamshire actually. But three Women to every Man no!! As a born and bread Nottingham lass, I am quite sure that isn’t quite true. If you counted all of the Elderly war widows than maybe it would come somewhere near. There are however lots of ladies in Nottingham (note the way I describe us as ladies) and also lots of men too. Nottingham is rapidly expanding into a red-hot nightspot, already we are over run with out of town stag and hen parties that come here to experience the great atmosphere and spirit. Over the past few years the nightlife has grown steadily and is now considered one of the best nightspots in the U.K. With the completion of a recent development called the Cornerhouse, Nottingham can definitely say that it has one of everything. The Cornerhouse is a large leisure complex right in the heart of the city center, it has everything, well near enough everything to keep you going on a night out. It contains a large Warner Bros Cinema, a nightclub called ‘The Work’, Nando’s chicken, Pizza Hut, Henry J Beans, TGI Fridays and many other well know bars and restaurants. It’s great conveniently located near bus routes and taxi ranks. Always very clean, with great security, I have never seen any trouble there. The service in each of the outlets seems to be of a very good standard, but the best thing is everything is together so you don’t have to trek to get from the restaurants to some decent bars. Then you can even go clubbing (bonus). It’s also very close to both the Theatre Royal and the Royal concert hall, which is great if you have just spent the evening watching Daniel O’Donnell (no of
fence to his fans). The unfortunate thing about Nottingham at the moment is that with all the development and expansion that is going on, some things are suffering. They are currently building a new tram network to service the popular commuting routes into Nottingham city center. This has seen the center become more of a building site and less of a focal point. Everything seems to have been dug up, roads, bus shelters, the Market Square and many other places. This doesn’t give a good first impression, although we are reliably informed it is for the best! The local Bus Service has recently seen major new changes to all its services. They are currently experiencing a driver shortage and many services are suffering as a result. At the moment we have what I call a pot luck service, if you get it your number has come up, if you don’t then better luck next time. Please don’t think from this that Nottingham is a bad place, it’s not, and I’m just trying to give you an objective opinion. If you’re here and fancy trying out a few places these are some of my personal recommendations. Eating in Nottingham: Nando’s Chicken (Cornerhouse) A Portuguese Chicken restaurant, not particularly a fancy place, but the food is very nice. The sell mainly Chicken dishes (you probably got that from the name), cooked in Peri Peri spices. It reasonably cheap, nicely decorated, great service and the foods not bad either. I would recommend this to start your night on the tiles, or for a shopping day lunch. Chico’s This is a fairly small Italian/Spanish/Mexican restaurant based on the Mansfield Road one of the main routes into the city center. It has an excellent atmosphere, really nice for a meal with friends or your partner. You can take your own wine if you want to. The food is always very nice, I highly recommend the steaks. It’s only a short walk to the main pu
bs and clubs. Tequila Nice Mexican restaurant. Always on 2 for 1 so it is quite cheap. Close to the center. Good service and you can linger as long as you like. Pubs Brass Monkey In the Lace market area. One of the higher quality pubs in Nottingham, can be a little pretentious but offers some fantastic cocktails. I really do think that everyone should sample one. Via Fossa Set in an old building but revamped to form an old style but trendy pub. The interior is a mish-mash of styles from old wooden tables to big cow print sofas. Excellent atmosphere and as this place is so big there are lots of cozy nooks and crannies to hide away in. Parisa Set in the Cornerhouse complex, Parisa is a large, fairly bright open pub/restaurant. Plenty of room and offers a wide range of wines. Also excellent cocktails, look out for the Rasberetta this is sublime. Clubs The Works Again set in the Cornerhouse complex. A large club, with different levels. Also a bar on the entrance floor. Plays a selection of Pop and dance music. Nicely decorated, unusually nicely decorated toilets. Open till 3am. Rock City For people who are in to Alternative music this is heaven, a highly acclaimed large rock and alternative venue. It is also very popular on Friday night when it hosts Love Shack and evening of Classic 80s’ and 90s’ music, also 60s’ and 70’s played in it sub-club The Rig which is both accessible through its own entrance and through Rock City. Media The big people puller. Ultra Trendy, Ultra Chic. Host big name DJ’s and dance nights. It comes high recommended by many friends and Out of Towner’s although myself I find it far to pretentious. More of a who’s who than a club. But still whatever floats your boat. So if you are thinking of visiting Nottingham you will have a few things to go at. But be warned ladies the local men are in m
y consideration descendants of the Shark!! (There are possibly a few decent ones about)
A is for the ARBORETUM `````````'''''''''''''' ;'''''''''''' An oasis of tranquility to the north-west of the city centre. Trees, grass, duck-ponds and an aviary. A lovely place for a stroll or a picnic, and a nice gentle place to start an opinion about Nottingham - the fastest growing city in the country, so I'm told. Along the way I will drop in a few true or false questions to tease you. Like this easy one... TRUE OR FALSE: Nottingham was originally called Snotingham (the home of the Snots) ? I will also illustrate each entry with a web-link or two, most of which are much more interesting than this one: http://www.york.ac.uk/depts/arch/landscapes/ukpg/sites/nottingh.htm ___________________________________________________________ B is for BOOTS ``````'''''''''''''' The founder of Boots the Chemists - Jesse Boot - was born in Nottingham in 1850. His father died when he was ten years old, so he left school at thirteen to help his mother run the family's herbalist shop on Goosegate. The second most famous Nottingham philanthropist (after Robin Hood) Jesse kept his prices low for the benefit of his local, poor customers. It soon became one of the busiest shops in Nottingham, and expanded into an empire of more than 500 shops across the country making him rich. He toyed with the idea of building a model village (like Bournville or Port Sunlight) but after he sold Boots to an American in 1920, he chose to use the land as a magnificent and beautiful campus for Nottingham University. Few people have done as much good for their home town as Jesse Boot (later Lord Trent of Nottingham) did for Nottingham. http://www.boots-plc.com/history/CompanyHistory.asp _______________________
____________________________________ C is for CAVES ``````'''''''''''''' There is an extensive network of man-made caves beneath Nottingham. The Broad Marsh Shopping Centre is the starting point for a forty minute audio tour of some of them, and you can also view the caves underneath Nottingham Castle. Of course, C should have been for Castle, but I hope to post a separate op on the castle (if I ever finish it). http://www.aboutbritain.com/CavesOfNottingham.htm ___________________________________________________________ D is for D.H. LAWRENCE ``````'''''''''''''' 39;''''''''''''''' 9;''' The son of a miner and a school-teacher, David Herbert Lawrence - novelist, playwright, poet and artist - was born at 8A Victoria Street, Eastwood (about seven miles north-west of the city centre) on the 11th of September 1885. His works include Sons and Lovers, Women In Love and the notorious Lady Chatterley's Lover. Not that I'm trying to suggest he had a one-track mind you understand... TRUE OR FALSE: His lover, Frieda, was a cousin of the Red Baron (Manfred von Richthofen)? TRUE OR FALSE: After Lawrence died, Frieda had his ashes mixed in with some concrete and used to make her a new mantelpiece? http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/english/research/dhlawrence/index.html __________________________________________________________ E is for the EMBANKMENT `````````'''''''''''''' ;''''''''''''''' The Victoria Embankment stretches between Trent Bridge and the Clifton Suspension Bridge (which is, admittedly not quite as impressive as the one in Bristol). The river is inhabited by swans, ge
ese and ducks despite being a horrible brown colour. Tthe annual Remembrance Day ceremony takes place at the War Memorial Gateway on the Embankment, and nearby are the Memorial Gardens, wherein you can find a statue of Queen Victoria not looking amused. This is also land donated to the people of Nottingham by Sir Jesse Boot. The Embankment is also the venue for the Riverside Festival featuring music from around the world, stalls selling quality craftwork of all kinds and steam organs. This usually takes place in late July or early August: http://www.nottinghamevents.org/riverside/index.html It is also the venue for the Nottingham Green Festival in September: http://www.nottinghamevents.org/news&offers/green_fest.html ___________________________________________________________ F is for FOOTBALL TEAMS ``````'''''''''''''' 39;''''''''''''''' 9;''''' Two of. Separated by the River Trent, and one league division usually. Forest who were the best football team in Europe in 1979 & 1980, and Notts. County, the oldest club in the league (make your own joke here). Both are usually boracic. Meadow Lane is just off London Road not far from the railway station, whereas the City Ground is on the West Bridgford side of the river, just across the road from Trent Bridge cricket ground. TRUE OR FALSE: Notts. County played football at Trent Bridge cricket ground until 1910 and one of the stands was later floated across the river to Meadow Lane? http://www.nottinghamforest.co.uk/home/view/home_page/ http://www.nottscountyfc.co.uk/ __________________________________________________________ G is for GOOSE FAIR ``````'''''''''''''' 39;'''''''
39;''' Toffee apples, candy floss, mushy peas, big wheels, helter skelters, ghost trains, dodgems, roundabouts, hook-a-duck stalls, cuddly toys... The biggest travelling fair in the country. Woohoo! Traditionally it is opened by the Lord Mayor ringing a bell at noon on the first Thursday in October and closes at 11:30pm the following Saturday (although these days it also opens on the Wednesday evening from 6pm). The first Goose Fair was held in 1294, and was for the sale of livestock. No-one is quite sure why it is called the Goose Fair, but certainly geese would have been sold there, in time to be fattened up for Christmas. It originally took place in the Old Market Square, but in 1928 it was moved to the Forest Recreation Ground just to the north-west of the city centre. It's always VERY crowded, and usually muddy. (The local expression "proper Goose Fair weather" means "it's p***ing it down.") I remember feeling so sad, tucked up in bed on the Saturday night, knowing that the fair was over for a whole year. Just like Boxing Day or the end of Big Brother... http://www.nottinghamgoosefair.co.uk/ __________________________________________________________ H is for HOLME PIERREPONT ``````'''''''''''''' 39;''''''''''''''' 9;''''''''''' To the east of the city, across the river from Colwick Country Park and Nottingham Racecourse, the village of Holme Pierrepont is the home of the National Watersports Centre, with some of the best watersports facilities in the country, including a 2000 metre rowing course. But, er, don't drink the water (there have been complaints…) It will surely be an integral part of any bid by Nottingham to host the Olympic Games. No, don
't laugh, all we need is a big new stadium, more hotels and to be run by a murderous authoritarian regime. http://www.nationalsportscentres.co.uk/hpp/hpp.htm ___________________________________________________________ I is for the new ICE ARENA ```````````` '''''''''''''''' 39;'''''' If Nottingham hadn't already been on the map, Torvill & Dean would certainly have put us there with their gold-medal-winning ice-dance routine in the 1980s:- Mack and Mabel, Barnum and... *that* Bolero! Who can forget the sight of a row of perfect marks? (Fortunately none of those judges docked marks for the routine not being long enough.) Fittingly, Nottingham is now home to the National Ice Centre which opened last year. The Arena now gives Nottingham a large concert venue to attract the big names of the music world as well. Like Westlife. The Ice Arena is on Lower Parliament Street, at the end of London Road as you enter the city from the south (via Trent Bridge). 6.0 6.0 6.0 6.0 6.0 6.0 6.0 6.0 http://www.nottingham-arena.co.uk/home.shtml ___________________________________________________________ J is for JUSTICE ````` '''''''''''''''' 39; Voted visitor attraction of the year, the motto of The Galleries of Justice is "Feel the Fear!" Here you can travel back in time and see, hear and smell the way justice was meted out in previous centuries, including a Victorian trial. You can also try to solve a murder from clues left at the scene of the crime. The Galleries of Justice is situated on High Pavement in the Lace Market, on a site which has housed courtrooms since 1375, and prison cells since 1449. It is open between 10am to 4pm, Tuesday to Sunday and Mondays during school holidays, but it costs. £6.95 for adults
and £4.95 for children. A family ticket will set you back £22.95. http://www.galleriesofjustice.org.uk/ http://www.aboutbritain.com/GalleriesOfJustice.htm __________________________________________________________ K is for KIDS ``````'''''''''' Of course there aren't as many chimneys as there used to be, so finding ways to keep the young 'uns busy can be trying... If you visit Nottingham at the end of the first week in October, Goose Fair is a must. Otherwise I suggest a tour of the following attractions all within easy walking distance of each other: the Tales of Robin Hood, the Castle, Brewhouse Yard Museum, the Broadmarsh caves and (if you can afford it) the Galleries of Justice. For more ideas check out the link below: http://dspace.dial.pipex.com/town/square/ga42/kids/kidsnott.html ___________________________________________________________ L is for LACE ````` ''''''''''' Nottingham has a worldwide reputation for making lace. The area called the Lace Market is at the eastern end of the city centre. Not really my cup of tea, but if you are interested in that sort of stuff, some places worth visiting are:- the Lace Museum on Castle Road, the Museum of Costume Textiles on Castle Gate, and the Lace Market Centre on High Pavement. You can also take the 'Lace Market Trail' by hiring an "audio wand" for £1.95. Admission to the exhibition is free. http://www.nottinghamlace.org/ ___________________________________________________________ M is for the ironically named MAID MARIAN WAY `````````````````````` '''''''''''''''' 39;''''''''''''''' 9;'''''' Described as the ugliest street in Europe, it cuts a swathe
through the western side of the city centre, disconnecting the Castle from the Old Market Square. It is a shocking remnant of the 1960's cars and concrete approach towards town planning. There is talk of sinking it underground, but talk is as cheap as concrete was. http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/nigel_h/aerial.htm ___________________________________________________________ N is for NEWSTEAD ABBEY ``````'''''''''''''' 39;''''''''''''''' 9;''''''' OK, I'm stretching it a little here - the ancestral home of the legendary 19th century romantic poet Lord Byron is at Ravenshead about twelve miles north of the city, but it is well worth a mention. Lord George Gordon Noel Byron is a national hero in Greece, having fought alongside the Greek people in their quest for independence from Turkey. Famously described as being "mad, bad and dangerous to know" by Lady Caroline Lamb, his scandalous lifestyle (leaving his wife to have an affair with his half-sister for example) made Byron the Eminem of his day. There will soon be a Hollywood movie about Byron, starring Johnny Depp. TRUE OR FALSE: Byron had a club foot shaped like a cloven hoof? Newstead Abbey is open to the public from April to September inclusive, from noon until 5pm (but no admittance after 4pm) Admission is £4 for adults (£2 concessions) and £1.50 for children. (Family tickets are £10). You can even get married there if you want. Newstead Abbey is just off the A60, and near junction 27 of the M1. http://www.newsteadabbey.org.uk/ ___________________________________________________________ O is for the OLD MARKET SQUARE ````````` '''''''''''''''' 39;''''''
9;'''''''''''''''' '''' The centre of Nottingham, affectionately known as Slab Square. It's the biggest market square in Britain, covering 5.5 acres, with shops and bars all round; and if you look up, some unusually detailed buildings, designed by the architect Watson Fothergill, sandwiched between crass modern buildings. The Council House, with its 200ft high dome, stands at the eastern end of the square and was designed by Cecil Howitt in 1929. Inside the dome is a ten-and-a-half ton bell known as Little John (geddit?)which strikes once at a quarter past the hour, twice at half-past, three times at a quarter-to and chimes out the hours in full. Confucius said that there are two ways to see the world: the first is to travel, the second is to stay where you are and watch the world go by. The same is true here, if you wait by one of the two stone lions at the front of the Council House, it is said that sooner or later everyone in Nottingham will pass by. http://www.nottinghamcity.gov.uk/coun/c_house_guide/default.asp and I can't talk about the Old Market Square without mentioning... ___________________________________________________________ P is for PIGEONS and PENSIONERS ``````'''''''''''''' 39;'''' ``` '''''''''''''''' 39;'''''''''' Traditionally, the Old Market Square is full of pigeons and pensioners. They waddle around unsteadily on two thin, knobbly legs, mimicking human beings, getting in everyone's way scavenging for scraps of food. Controversially, the council hired a pigeon-hawk to try and cull some last year, but it wasn't a pretty site. If you enjoy some of the more bizarre c
ommentaries on dooyoo ops you might also enjoy the pigeon debate on BBC's Nottingham website, which has some <ahem> *funny* suggestions from all over the world: http://www.bbc.co.uk/nottingham/speakout/pigeon.shtml ___________________________________________________________ Q is for the QUEEN'S MEDICAL CENTRE ````````` '''''''''''''''' 39;''''''''''''''' 9;'''''''''''''''' ;''''''' Well, what can I say about a hospital? Give me a break, I needed a Q, OK? It's a big hospital with an international reputation. The Prince of Wales sometimes comes here when he's broken something falling orf his horse, or when his son has been brained by a golf club. http://www.nhsetrent.gov.uk/trent/trusts/nuhnt.htm ___________________________________________________________ R is for ROBIN HOOD (inevitably) ``````'''''''''''''' 39;'''''''''''' Yes, Nottingham had socialism long before Karl Marx came along! Robin Hood is world's most famous outlaw, and the bronze statue of him on Castle Road is a popular place for tourists to have their photo taken. The Tales of Robin Hood is nearby (on Maid Marian Way) and describes itself as Nottingham's most popular tourist attraction. Tours last ninety minutes, during which you will be pursued by the Sheriff of Nottingham (boo!) There is also an adventure ride and you can try a bit of archery. It's open from 10am every day (except Christmas Day and Boxing Day) and admission prices are £4.95 for adults and £3.95 for children. Family tickets are £15.75 for a family of four and £18.75 for a family of five. <br>
http://www.robinhood.uk.com/ I can't really tell you anything about Sherwood Forest because I've never been there. Look, it's a forest - a lot of trees - what else is there to say? http://www.robinhood.ltd.uk/ There is also an annual Robin Hood Marathon in and around Nottingham The 2001 marathon will start at 10am on Sunday 30th September. http://www.robinhoodmarathon.co.uk// __________________________________________________________ S is for SCAFFOLDING, SCULPTURE and the SKY MIRROR ``````'''''''''''''' 39;''''''''''''''' '''''''''''''''' 39;'''''''' `````` '''''''''''''''' 39;'''''''' While some cities never sleep, Nottingham is just never finished. I can't remember a time when the Nottingham skyline hasn't included scaffolding and the odd crane. Progress, progress, progress. There are lots of statues and sculptures dotted about the place, but new sculptures invariably prove unpopular for some reason. "Turner Prize-winning artist Anish Kapoor's £900,000 Sky Mirror", as the local newspaper describes it, is the latest 'controversial' piece of sculpture. Installed (or do I mean outstalled?) in the courtyard of the Nottingham Playhouse (near the top end of Maid Marian Way). The Sky Mirror is a ten tonne highly polished stainless steel concave dish nearly 6m in diameter. For a while it was thought that it might be an ingenious way of solving the pigeon problem - by zapping them with a concentrated beam of reflected sunlight, but in reality it just turned out to be a hunk of polished metal. http://www.nottinghamplayhouse.co.uk/s
kymirror/ One sculpture which was actually mistaken for scaffolding (albeit multi-coloured scaffolding) can be seen adorning the Concert Hall... ___________________________________________________________ T is for the THEATRE ROYAL / ROYAL CONCERT HALL `````````'''''''''''''' ;'''''''''''''''' ''''''''''''''''& #39;''''''''''''''' 39;''''''''''''''' 9;'''' The present Theatre Royal opened in 1865, although there had been a Theatre Royal for a century before that. It was refurbished in 1977. The Royal Concert Hall opened next-door in 1982. Together they offer opera, ballet, dance, comedy, musicals and drama. http://www.royalcentre-nottingham.co.uk/ ___________________________________________________________ U is for UNIVERSITIES ``````'''''''''''''' 39;'''''''''''''' Two of. Nottingham University - one of the most popular universities in the country, and Nottingham Trent University (or Trent Poly as was.) Nottingham University boasts one of the largest campuses in the country and is situated to the west of the city centre, adjacent to Wollaton Park. The land donated by Jesse Boot provides a beautiful setting for the students to enjoy, with it's boating lake, trees and acres of grass... They have also recently added a new hi-tech campus nearby. http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/ Nottingham Trent University is mainly located in the city centre, although it does also have a campus at Clifton (but that's sarf of the river
mate...) They'll let anyone in, even Richard Bacon. http://www.ntu.ac.uk/ ___________________________________________________________ V is for the VICTORIA & BROAD MARSH SHOPPING CENTRES `````````'''''''''''''' ;'''''''''''''''' ''''''''''''''''& #39;''''''''''''''' 39;''''''''''''''' 9;'''''''''''''''' ;'''' Nottingham is a great place to go shopping. We have two indoor shopping malls at the northern and southern ends of a compact city centre which is chock-a-block with places where you can give us all your dosh. From the outside the Broad Marsh Centre looks like a dump, indeed, if you come to Nottingham via train or bus you will see why locals have for years been calling for something to be done about the dreadful first impression it gives to visitors. Thankfully plans are afoot to modernize and extend it. The centrepiece of the Broad Marsh is Allders department store. The Victoria Centre is not hard to find because there is a block of flats above it, dominating the Nottingham skyline like an asymmetrical ziggurat. A very popular shopping centre, it was extended a couple of years ago when House of Fraser opened a large branch there, when the northern end was extended and the bus station redesigned. This new section is an Aladdin's Cave for kids, with the Disney store, the Gadget shop, a teddy bear shop, a computer games store and Jerry's (big) fish tank. There is a large indoor market in the middle of the centre, and at the opposite end, just outside Boot's and near Jessop's (John Lewis) departme
nt store, you will find the Emmett clock, a popular meeting place. This is an elaborate Heath Robinson-like water clock which plays a tune and does some pretty whirly stuff on the hour. Nottingham's main shopping axis runs north-south from the Victoria Centre via Clumber Street (one of the busiest pedestrian streets in the country) to the Broad Marsh Centre, passing the Council House en route. Both shopping centres are air-conditioned of course. Uuuuuuhhhhhyyesss. All that cool air circulating enabing you to literally chill out. Double cool. Escape the weather and give us all your money, you know you want to. http://www.victoria-centre-nottingham.co.uk/subhomes/infosubhome.html ___________________________________________________________ W is for WOLLATON PARK `````` '''''''''''''''' 39;''''''''''''''' 9;''' A slightly haunted Elizabethan mansion house completed in 1588, it is now home to a Natural History Museum with lots of stuffed stuff, including a giraffe (sorry Geoffrey) as well as an Industrial Museum. TRUE OR FALSE: Cat's eyes and the video recorder were invented by Nottingham men? Wollaton Hall is set in 400 acres of parkland including a beautiful lake. The grounds are home to some rare cattle and a herd of rare red deer which aren't fond of dogs. Wollaton Hall is open from 11am to 4pm daily, except for Fridays between November and February (I don't make the rules!) The Industrial Museum shuts between January and March, otherwise it's open from 11am to 5pm. Admission is FREE except for Weekends and Bank Holidays, when it costs £1.50 for adults (80p for concessions) http://www.innotts.co.uk/~asperges/woll.html It's also the venue for the annual City In The Park summer music festival.
http://www.cityinthepark.com/ ___________________________________________________________ X is for... er, ...um, ...the shape of the sails on GREEN'S WINDMILL ! ```````````````````````````````````` '''''''''''''''' 39;''''''''''''''' 9;'''''''''' Green's Mill isn't hard to find - try scanning the skyline for a windmill, doh! Situated on Windmill Lane (oh, what a coincidence!) in an area called Sneinton (from whence hails local-lad-turned-film-director Shane Meadows who made the acclaimed film twentyfourseven) this is a fully operational windmill, so at times you can see grain being ground the traditional way. It also houses a science centre with some hands-on exhibits to fascinate and enlighten the kiddiewinkies, because 200 years ago the windmill was the home of mathematician George Green. His "Essay on the Application of Mathematical Analysis to the Theories of Electricity and Magnetism" (published in 1828) was ahead of it's time, using new techniques which became known as Green's functions. As none of us will understand any of that malarkey I may as well stop there. http://www.innotts.co.uk/greensmill/ ___________________________________________________________ Y is for YE OLDE TRIP TO JERUSALEM ````` '''''''''''''''' 39;''''''''''''''' 9;'''''''''''''''' ;'''''''''''' The Trip claims to be the oldest pub in Europe, no hang it, the world! Supposedly it dates back to 1189, but it's not even the oldest pub in Nottingham according to that Channel 4 programm
e presented by Blackadder's pal Baldrick, which gave that distinction to the Bell Inn on Angel Row. It certainly looks the part though. And anyway people HAVE been drinking there for centuries, erm, like everywhere else I suppose! The cellars and some of the rooms were carved out of the rock on which the Castle stands. The Trip is at the bottom of Castle Road, next to the Brewhouse Yard Museum (of Nottingham Life) which is also well worth visiting if you would like to see how we Nottinghamians used to live. Other famous old watering-holes nearby include The Royal Children higher up on Castle Road, and The Salutation Inn on Houndsgate. http://www.triptojerusalem.com/ ___________________________________________________________ Z is for Z.E.V.s (Zero Emission Vehicles) ``````'''''''''''''' 39;''''''''''''''' 9;'''''''''''''''' ;'''''''''''''''' ''' Which I what I presume the new Trams will be. I say presume, because I have deliberately avoided checking! To paraphrase the old journalistic motto: never lets the facts get in the way of a good Z. The first tram route is currently being constructed, disrupting the lives of many irate shopkeepers and motorists. It should be good though. http://www.lrta.org/nottingham.html ___________________________________________________________ So there we are (well, I am anyway) - I think that's quite enough for now. Nottingham the best city in the country, in Europe, in the world, whatever. What was that? You want more? More information? More links? Oh, all right, you slave-driver, stick these in your browser and smoke 'em:- http://www.nottingham.uk.net/ http://www.visitnotti
ngham.com/home.asp http://www.bbc.co.uk/nottingham/entertainment/attractions/ http://www.usefulinfo.co.uk/nottingham/ http://www.nottingham-index.co.uk/places_of_interest/ As for the TRUE OR FALSE questions, believe it or not they were all true. (To be honest, I just couldn't be bothered to think up any false ones.) ___________________________________________________________
I moved to Nottingham last September when I started University and fallen in love with the place straightaway. It is such a special place and is fantastic for people whether they’re interested in shopping, clubbing or whatever. Nottingham is the best place to shop in the East Midlands. The Victoria Centre has a great range of shops and is bigger than Broadmarsh. You can find all the essential shops as well as the more individual and obscure shops. If you’re new to the place you must visit the trendy Hockley area. Further on from there is Sneinton Market (on Saturday and Monday mornings) where shoppers can find great designer bargains and cheap copies. Nottingham has its bad areas like any other city. Radford is a notable one and I wouldn't go out alone after dark anywhere. If you’re looking for accommodation in Nottingham I’d avoid St Anns and the Meadows area. These areas are usually student-oriented and there is higher crime rates nearer to the University. The club scene is my most favourite part of Nottingham, with Media being the best. 'Media' is for the keen clubber and appeals to a great variety of tastes. It also boasts famous DJ residents such as Judge Jules and Trevor Nelson. If you ever visit Nottingham you must go to Media, people travel from afar for nights like ‘Renaissance’. Tuesday is the official Student night with only £2 entry with NUS. Thursdays is ‘Satellite’ and is house, dance and anthems. Friday and Saturday night are the most popular (and most expensive with £12 entry). Basically a club to put at the top of your list! Other great clubs include The Bomb, Rock City and for cheese lovers there’s Palais and Ocean. There’s many more good clubs in Nottingham, it would be impossible to mention all of them and which nights. There’s also a huge range of pubs and bars in Nottingham. Whether you like homely pubs, to play pool or want ch
eap drinks there’s something for everyone. There are also theatres in Nottingham, and the new Warner Village Cinema is definitely worth a visit. Just don’t forget your NUS! Nottingham people are very friendly and there’s often a nice, buzzing atmosphere around the place. Art lovers will enjoy visiting the Angel Row Gallery, the Castle Museum and the Costume Gallery which has a nice range of vintage clothes and accessories. A favourite place to lounge around in is the Arboretum (a wonderful park) which is about 5 minutes away from Nottingham Trent University. Best to go in the summer as there’s usually an Icecream van parked outside, which is useful! Overall Nottingham is a fantastic place to visit, I’m still discovering shops and pubs that I’ve yet to go to. Whatever your interests are, Nottingham will have something for you. Thank you for reading and any comments (as usual!) are welcome.