Sunday, November 15, 2009

A Visit to Nottingham

I'm also including this post in the 'Things I am thankful for in November' series of posts (see the button on my sidebar) because this one is about good friends and neighbours. Yesterday we visited friends in Nottingham. We set out early and were in the city centre by 9.40a.m. I've always loved Nottingham - I remember coming here as a small child on shopping trips with my Mum, aunt and cousins. The things I remembered most about the city as a child are the lions in front of the Council Chambers on Old Market Square, what we used to called Slab Square. I'm not sure if the name has changed since its recent re-design. I've yet to see the whole square since it has been refurbished because the first time we came the hoardings were still in place before it was opened, the next time the ice rink was in place and this year again the ice rink is there. They were also decorating the huge Christmas tree using a scaffold.

Here is one of the lions, I couldn't get far enough away to photograph both of them but I remember they were always the place to meet - 'see you at the lions' was the usual arrangement.

In this part of the city the trams whizz by with a clunk and a clank. They are great fun! They also all have names - the one below is named for footballing legend Brian Clough manager of Nottingham Forest from 1975 to 1993 - see here for the other names including Jesse Boot founder of Boots Chemists.

We had parked in the Broad Marsh Centre but actually wanted to visit John Lewis which is in the Victoria Centre; the walk between the two isn't far and I enjoyed window shopping along Bridlesmith Gate and Clumber Street on the way.

I was pleased to see that the Roland Emett water powered clock or 'The Aqua Horological Tintinnabulator' is still in the Victoria Centre although for some reason it didn't play the usual music on the hour as we watched the birds and animals with their musical instruments whizz round at exactly 11a.m. Installed in 1973 it has become, like the lions in the Square, another meeting place for shoppers and friends. More information about the clock here

We left the city and drove up to where our friends live and had a lovely lunch catching up on news and chattering about books, films, cooking, food and lots of other things around the lunch table and then in their comfy living room overlooking the park. All too soon the sun disappeared and darkness fell over the park and tree lined promenade - it was time to get ready to drive home. Thankfully the strong winds that had been promised didn't materialise and we had a good journey back to Stoke. Our kind neighbour had been in and fed the cats, closed curtains and put on the lights for our return home. So after a lovely day yesterday I'm thankful for good friends and neighbours.


  1. You're really lucky to have such a kind neighbour!
    Are those lions cousins to those ones at Trafalgas Square?! :)

    P.S. the orange fruits are Persimmons

  2. Ive not been to Nottingham for years. I used to go a lot in the early 80's - simply because it was home to the nearest Laura Ashley!!! That was before Terence Conran revolutionised the High Street - and made everywere look the same!! xxxxxx

  3. Isn't it lovely to have friends and neighbours that you can rely on? I spent a week at Nottingham many years ago doing an Open University course. I never got to see outside the campus but would have loved to had a look around town. Thanks for the visit!

  4. Michela, thanks for letting me know about the fruits :)

    Diane - we were probably once shopping in Nottingham at the same time and at Laura Ashley too:)

    Simone - I did OU too but my summer schools were at Keele and Bath Unis:)

  5. It has been many years since I last went to Nottingham. Like Diane and yourself it was the nearest Laura Ashley to where I used to live and also the place I love to go to shop. My wedding dress came from that store.
    It's nice to have good friends to share things with.

  6. I just know that we have met in the past - and I'm sure that even if we don't plan it, we will meet in the future!!!! Its very spooky!! Like the other Rosie, I went looking for my wedding dress in that Laura Ashley - but they didnt have much in. I find it all very intriguing and interesting.xxxx

  7. Rosie - I bet your wedding dress was beautiful LA's dresses were gorgeous weren't they?

    Diane - well we are definitely going to visit the Botanic Gardens at Sheffield before too long so you never know:) Spookily too - my wedding dress came from a department store in Sheffield:)

    Isn't it a small world sometimes?

  8. It's years since I've been to Nottingham, I used to go quite often at one time doing family history research in the library and record office. My grandmother was born in Nottingham and her family goes back there or in nearby villages as far as I've been able to trace. How nice to have friends who made it such a pleasant homecoming for you.

  9. I have a photo of me, oh maybe age 13 or 14 - taken in front of one of the lions. I was wearing my Girl Guides uniform!

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