Fishfinger

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About Fishfinger

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  • Location
    Beeston
  • Interests
    Architecture and design, mainly Gothic Revival stuff, and thus anything Watson Fothergill. History - WW2 home front and the Civil War. Lost buildings and anything weird.

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  1. It was Suthell when I lived there briefly as a kid - never heard of 'Southwell' until the 1990s and poncy London incomers! Mansfield friend born and bred insists it is Rennoth!
  2. Fascinating stuff - only coming to this part of the city in the 80s, I never realised Bilbie Walk had a previous existence, nor knew Arkwright Building as anything other than educational facilities (the Fashion Dept dye technology labs were in the top floor at the Bilbie end in my day). Terrace Royal at the bottom of Clarendon Street is now Grade1 listed externally, but the ghastly object plonked on what for years was a car park between there and the Chaucer Building can't be said to complement it!
  3. Having intimate acquaintance with the goods lift in Newton, and how much kit would fit in it (not), I imagine most bands would take their gear up in the public lifts at the front! I have to say though that I never realised how many great names had hallowed the old Refectory area with their presence - in my time in Newton, it was just an empty space my department would have loved to occupy!
  4. It was bloody difficult to get to see bands in Nottingham when you lived in Grantham, but luckily for me, my Dad allowed his arm to be twisted and he took a carload of us to see our favourite band at the Portland - Horslips, then the biggest band in Ireland after Thin Lizzy, and inventors of Celtic rock. I won't go into how we got into the dressing room, but we did, and have stayed friends with the band ever since! We saw them again there the following year (invited into the dressing room that time!), and later I saw the Italian prog band PFM at the Portland, but had to leave early in order to get the last train back to Grantham. That particular gig was prefaced by drinks in the Flying Horse, another massive loss to the city.
  5. I'm one of those who intensely dislike the vandalism perpetrated on Slab Square, particularly the 'Weeing Wall', which bears no relationship to its surroundings in scale, purpose or materials, and which meant the destruction of a far more useful 'weeing facility'! What I want to know, though, is has anyone improved it by the addition of Fairy Liquid, as regularly happened with its predecessors?
  6. Oh, you would! I've had the dubious pleasure of seeing the proposals made in the 1960s for the new 'civic centre', which would have stretched from Newton up to the crossroads with the St Ann's Road on Mansfield Rd, along the bottom of the Arboretum, and back up Goldsmith St. They make Maid Marian Way look like a model of sympathic planning in scale with the rest of the city - horrendous! I personally rather like Newton myself - I always think it's like a big dog that's so ugly you can't help being fond of it, and certainly, there are far worse monstrosities in the city from the Brutalist era, definitely designed with malice aforethought, and mostly already decaying badly!
  7. It's actually a rather positive addition to Beeston, for a change - it covers the massive, depressing, blank side wall of the Square buildings on the side of Station Rd, and depicts Richard Beckinsale, Edwin Starr and Sir Paul Smith. The same artist has created other pieces of art around Beeston centre, including a portrait of Boon and Rocky on the side of The Star
  8. Yep, on the sides of the Central Fire Station door! I believe the lizard is a salamander, which in its mythical form is supposed to be impervious to fires, hence appropriate for a fire station. The unit in the lower of the previous photos I have seen identified as Beeston Fire Brigade, taken at the old firemen's housing on Villa St. Is there a specific thread on the Dakin's fire? I have only been on Nottstalgia a few days, but have seen several references to it, and am curious. I always thought that end of Talbot St. looked a mess - is that why?
  9. Interested in any memories of Trent's Newton Building prior to the 1980s, when I worked there - I was told it was originally designed in the 1930s, but the plans had to be mothballed due to the war/lack of finance after, hence construction being delayed until the late 1950s. Previous to starting at Trent Poly, I worked at Loughborough University; my boss there had trained at Nottingham Tech, and told me that in the city it was known as 'the Kulturpalast' due to being thought similar to Stalinist architecture of the period! I was also told that originally it was planned to be the centre one of triplets, with the buildings on either side being angled so the 3 formed an arrowhead. Given the topography of that bit of Nottingham, I doubt this last, but I would certainly like to hear any stories anyone has about the place!
  10. As a huge fan of Gothic Revival architecture (and thus of Watson Fothergill/Fothergill Watson), that was a crime for which no punishment is sufficient. However, everyone is misunderstanding the original of the name (and of other pubs thus called): it's nothing to do with slavery, or even African lads - 'The Black Boy' was the nickname of Charles II (he was notably swarthy), and was used as a coded reference to him by Royalists during the Parliamentarian interregnum 1649-1660, hence its adoption - along with Royal Oak - as a name for inns run by Royalists supporters and ex-soldiers In the early 1980s, the pub on the top of Market Street (Debenhams side) was known as The Black Boy', but became the Old Orleans, selling alligator and zebra steaks, around 1986.
  11. I remember Nonsuch - as 'Hairy' kids in Grantham (anyone remember Hairies? A now-forgotten youth culture between the hippy and punk eras), Nottingham was the 'promised land', and Nonsuch and 'the hippy shop' on the first floor of the Viccy were our primary targets, though Miss Selfridge in the Viccy and the original Chelsea Girl on Wheeler gate, as well as Sisson & Parker's and Blackwell's bookshops, and the original (tiny) Token House were also on our shopping itinerary. We ate in a first floor 'Tudor' restaurant on Upper Parliament St, on the north side of the road, can't recall the name. In later years, I knew a guy who worked on the concrete shuttering when the Viccy was being built: according to him, someone misread the plans and the rear stairs were positioned the wrong way round (should have faced the rear entrance, not the front, as they did) - the concrete had been poured and had gone off before the error was found, so they were just left: I was highly amused that the replacements were put in correctly during the big revamp when the bus station went! I personally liked the Food Court - working at Trent Poly at the time, it was handy for a variety of grub, especially Edward's Patisserie, which did a lot of Polish cakes, and which moved there from a dreadful street in Hockley (Broad or George, forget which), so I didn't have so far to go for lunch! Still miss both Edwards and the Food Court, though I no longer work in the city centre.
  12. Clif Ton, the large white building behind the modern school (College House/The Lanes) is College House itself. It has a huge copper beech and a yew which are apparently from the arboretum, as are the large dark trees on 'Goodacre St'. College House was part of the original school, despite being architecturally different, as I have a print in the prospectus showing it joined to the school building by a covered walkway, part of which apparently remains. The brick building behind College House is the college itself, now divided into 2 private houses. The tower where the spire should have been is the lighter square part at the right hand end of the college as you view the photo. The college building was owned by a builder briefly c.1970, and all sorts of terrible things done to turn it into flats, as was the norm in those days, which is why I was wondering if the spire was there up to it passing into the builder's hands. From Jill's memories, it would appear it wasn't, which begs 2 questions - one, when was it removed, then; two - was it ever actually built, given that Goodacre's school failed within 3 years, due to 'straightened circumstances'?
  13. Yes, Richard Beckinsale went to College House School - there is a Beeston Blue Plaque there now, as well as the stunning huge mural on the side of the Beeston Square precinct buildings. There are 4 'modern' houses on College Road itself - a 1960s-70s Vicarage next to the church, then at the top, a pair of 1950s semis constructed as police housing, then a large 1960s detached. There's also a set of 3 'couldn't swing a cat' terraced houses technically on the jittyway between College Road and Lime Grove Ave - which is actually called Goodacre Street, after the original school founder - but they have College Road addresses. The garages to them are built separately, on what was the garden to one of the houses in the college itself, and there is apparently something dodgy regarding the planning permission! Certainly, you can't get a car bigger than an original Mini in them, and still get out!
  14. I used to work with with a guy who trained as a TV engineer at Rediffusion, as did his brother. Rediffusion did also have an electrical goods rental side, which operated all over the country (my Gran in Yorkshire got her tellys from them), and also sold reconditioned ex rental tellys. My colleague's brother once had an 'experience' at Balloon Wood flats (whereabouts were they? Before my time in Nottingham, I think). He was sent to reclaim a telly on which the rental was outstanding. As he got out of his van, the defaulting renter appeared on one of the balconies holding the telly in his arms and shouted, "Want yer telly back? Avit - it dun't f-g work anyweh!", and dropped it! It certainly didn't work after that, so my colleague's brother swept the pieces up, put them in his van, and took them back to Rediffusion. Sadly, I have no idea what was said to him when he returned!
  15. Thanks, Jill. Besides the College building, there is also College House, which is also part of the original boarding school, and is on the opposite side to the side your aunt would have lived. It belonged at one time to the local education authority, but was sold off around 2000, and is now a private house. Perhaps this was the house your aunt meant? Lots of people would have worked there.