Although we have lived in Derbyshire for thirty four years, DH and I were born in Nottingham.
Nottingham is eighteen miles away from where we live but if you speak to people who were born in Derbyshire, Nottingham could be a thousand miles away!!!! We go back regularly to see family who still live there and to shop!
So today I thought I would show you some pictures of our Home Town (picture heavy post!).
Nottingham’s most famous Resident, Robin Hood! There was some talk about he was really from Yorkshire but we Nottinhamians just ignore that! We have all seen the films which have been made about Robin Hood and his fight with the Sheriff of Nottingham well this is his statue which stands outside the grounds of Nottingham Castle. For years when I was a little girl and went to see the statue the arrow was always missing, as people would steal it as a souvenir!! However the City Council managed to make one and affix it in a manner where it cannot be stolen!!!
Nottingham Castle, which is in the City Centre, is always quite a disappointment for visitors as it really isn’t a castle at all. A structure has stood on the rock above the city since 1067 shortly after the invasion of William the Conqueror. It was made of wood but three years later was rebuilt of stone. It was a Royal residence for the House of Normandy to Henry II who was quickly succeeded by Richard I (Richard The Lionheart) Robin Hood’s Time.
Richard was busy with the Crusades and left his brother, Prince John, in charge who had ambitions above his station. He took Nottingham Castle and began to rule the country from here. In 1194 Richard returned from abroad and took control back off John by siege tactics. He stormed the Castle and wrested control of it away from the soldiers loyal to his brother, making it the only time the castle fell to an attacking army!
It continued to be a Royal residence until James I of England (James VI of Scotland) sold it to the Earl of Rutland.
The original Castle was demolished in 1649 and the Duke of Newcastle built a manor house on the site (just like today when they knock an old building down and replace it with a modern monstrosity!). Anyway in 1831 rioters burnt it almost to the ground but it was re-built in 1878 by the Nottingham Council and now houses a museum and art gallery.
It is currently closed and being refurbished inside and out and is due to re-open in 2021.
The Castle and lots of other places in Nottingham City Centre have caves beneath which were used for lots of purposes including tanning of leather and the brewing of beer, as above which at the bottom of Castle Rock in the Brewhouse Yard.
The picture above is of the Brewhouse Yard Museum (you can jus see the Castle at the top of the picture) where staff used to stay who worked at the Castle and lots of jobs were done here for the Castle including the brewing of the beer.
The main entrance to the Castle.
This is St. Mary’s Church, High Pavement and is the oldest religious foundation and largest Medieval building in the City. It is mentioned in the Domesday Book and is belived to hail from Saxon times.
The above picture is Nottingham Council House where the City Council meet and lots of offices to do with the Council are and the Dome houses the Bell, Little John who strikes the hour, quarter and half which can be heard up to seven miles away. If we, when I lived at home, could hear the bell strike it was always going to rain!
The above building was opened in 1929 by the then Prince of Wales, later King Edward VIII & Duke of Windsor. The land in front of the Council House used to hold Nottingham’s Goose Fair and today plays host to one of the largest Christmas markets in the country and a summer “Nottingham by the Sea” event.
Two roads, which are now paved, run each side of the building and are named Long Row, above. This stretches for a long way and is made up of fancy shops, restaurants and hotels over the years and was seen as the upmarket side.
This is the other side of the Council House where the new tram system runs and is called Cheapside. This side used to house the butchers and there is a Poulty arcade. There wares used to be in baskets out in front of their shops.
Lots of other roads in the city centre are named after the trade which used to be carried on there. Fletcher Gate – makers of arrows, the feather end is actually called a fletch. Bridlesmith Gate – Bridles for horses. Wheeler Gate – Wheelrights. Beastmarket Hill – sale of livestock.
The Council House from Long Row at Christmas.
The Council House in the summer “By the Sea”
The Dome all lit up for Christmas.
We are lucky in Nottingham to still have some glorious buildings. These three were all built by Watson Fothergill, a Nottingham Architect between 1870 and 1906. He was inspired by the Medieval buildings and churches. The above building fronts onto Long Row.
This building sits at the junction of King Street to the right and Queen Street to the left.
As you can see from the writing on the building this is the oldest inn in England and it is where the Knights used to refresh themselves before leaving for the Crusades, no doubt including King Richard! It is very tiny and gets very busy but when you are in there you have to hold your hand over the drink as the rear of the inn is actually in the Castle wall and it is made of sandstone so you get bits of sand in your drink!!!!!
There are lots of little yards and alleys which connect various road, the above one being Hurts Yard which connects Parliament Street with Long Row. Tiny shops and restaurants are in these areas making them very busy places.
This is Weekday Cross, in the Lace Market, and was the original site of all the markets in Nottingham before they moved down into the centre in front of the Council House. The original Cross was erected in 1529 and the current one above was put in place in 1993.
This is Nottingham Theatre Royal built in 1865 by two Lace Barons John & William Lambert. One of it’s notable claims to fame is in October 1952 it made theatre history as the World Premiere of “The Mousetrap” as part of the pre-West End tour, the play has gone on to become the longest running theatrical production in the World and we all went to see it in London a few years ago! It was bought by the Council in 1969 and underwent a full restoration and was opened by Princess Anne in 1978 and has been open since.
We are also very lucky to have a lot of green spaces within the City Centre this being one of them Wellington Circus off which there are several roads which had some very nice homes built for some of Nottinghams top residents. It’s layout was influenced by London’s Regent Park and the surrounding roads bear some of the names; Oxford Street, Regent Street, College Street and Park Row!
This is one of the Trent Bridge’s which used to be over the river and is still standing, albeit currently in the middle of a traffic island around which the current Trent Bridge goes!!!!!
Finally this building is outside of the City Centre, Wollaton Hall and was built by Sir Francis Willoughby between 1580 and 1588. It was owned by the fmaily up until 1881 and was eventually bought by the City Council in 1925 and is now another museum.
In 2011 it became the home of Batman in “The Dark Night Rises” as Wayne Manor. The Hall is five miles north of Gotham, Nottinghamshire and it is believed this is how Gotham City indirectly got its name!
My Grandfather worked as an Engineer for Nottingham City Council before, during and after World War II and part of his job was to look after Wollaton Hall.
I hope you have enjoyed my tour of our Home Town of Nottingham. Some of the photographs are mine and some are from a great website http://www.nottingham21.co.uk Run by a Gentleman named Ray Teece a former Policeman who has taken a lot more pictures of Nottingham. If you would like to have a look at some more please click on the link above.
I hope you are all doing okay and Stay Safe.
Hugs & Love Susie xx