Michael Booth

Nottinghams Heritage Assets

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The Council House steps are always occupied by layabouts and dropouts Mary!  A couple I know were married at the Council House on a Friday afternoon at the end of July.  When they came out of the building they and their guests had to climb over bodies lolling about on the steps.  Then of course they were faced with the bloomin’ fun fair and beach.  Their fault for choosing that venue but the steps shouldn’t be a dossing place for all and sundry.   

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24 minutes ago, philmayfield said:

Alzheimer’s? No didn’t work with him either.:biggrin:

You may have forgotten! smile2

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1 hour ago, mary1947 said:

Hi TBI  The Black Boy I can just remember the out side with it's carvings was beautiful. as you walked into reception facing you was a massive mahogany staircase at the bottom, were two statues  of two little boy dressed in turban's and stately cloths it was shear luxury, when I started work my boss took us to the County Hotel for a Christmas meal, all I can remember are the very large mural's on the walls.

TBI 

Drury hill!   have you ever been to Lincoln?    at the side of the cathedral they kept their old shop's re- repaired them now the draw people from all over the world.

Markets you either like them or hate them but when ever you go on holidays there is always a trip to the local market and it's always full. 

Like you say we can not go back but we can make sure the planers don't mess our city up again.

You certainly make The Black Boy sound much more attractive than the grotty Littlewoods and Primark that followed, Mary. During the later '60s though, most of the older smaller city-centre hotels were closing unable to compete with towers like the newly-built Albany and Strathdon. The only real memory I have of the County is having a drink and a Manikin at the bar with Stan Ogden from Corrie who was staying there.

 

Yes, I do go to Lincoln from time to time, we're not too far away, but I much prefer Nottingham. I don't know if you are referring to Steep Hill which I agree is very pleasant, especially the lovely pie shop/restaurant, the one with the ghost. All the top-town area is very well-kept and quite diverse in terms of architecture, it's always thronged with tourists, touristy niche shops which can clearly make a decent living. It's also the main route from the castle/cathedral to the lower part and always busy. Generally much wider than Drury Hill, no factory units or stink. Remember whilst drury Hill was a major thoroughfare centuries back, Listergate, Wheeler Gate was where the foot-fall was.

 

Loppy, thanks yes. You got my point spot on.

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7 hours ago, loppylugs said:

I would say.  we have memories of a certain time 50 s /60s.  we do not remember what it was like before that.  Maybe our parents were already dissatisfied with the way things were going.    In fifty years time they will be lamenting the changes as we are now.

 

I definitely agree with that. Especially in terms of buildings and architecture, there’s a tendency to think “old is good, new is bad”, without apparently realising that everything which is now old was once new, and may not have originally been well received.

 

For example, when the Council House was built, you can bet a few people moaned about it because it wasn't as good as the old Exchange which it replaced.

 

When the Central Market was first built in the 1920s, people complained because it was too far out of the city centre, and they wanted to know why the market couldn’t stay in the Market Square.

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Yet again, no action taken by the authorities. Can you imagine the furore if slobs sprawled on the steps of Westminster Abbey, St Pauls, the Old Bailey etc. Well our Council House is important to us and shouldn't be used as a doss hole for the great unwashed !

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Tug wouldn’t have allowed the layabouts to hang around there for long. He knew how to move us lot on when we were teenagers!!  

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Yes, he didn't tolerate such unruly behaviour.

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I am unable to comment on the current modern buildings in Nottingham as I haven't seen them but my memory is of a load of cheap, flimsy tat replacing what were strong buildings which were meant to last and which had some architectural merit, not pastel-tinted plain boxes.

 

Architecture is still alive and well in the UK - I watched a programme on BBC satellite last night discussing the RIBA Stirling prize 2018. There were some incredible buildings in competition. That is real architecture - not that of some snotty-nosed undergraduate whose only design talents lie in the rearrangement of bits and bobs shaped like fag packets and matchboxes - and the concomitant 'planning officials' who give their 'approval' but buildings of REAL merit.

 

Have a look at the programme if you can.

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13 hours ago, LizzieM said:

 Their fault for choosing that venue but the steps shouldn’t be a dossing place for all and sundry.   

 

10 hours ago, FLY2 said:

Well our Council House is important to us and shouldn't be used as a doss hole for the great unwashed !

 

8 hours ago, LizzieM said:

Tug wouldn’t have allowed the layabouts to hang around there for long.

 

8 hours ago, FLY2 said:

he didn't tolerate such unruly behaviour.

 

This is how Notts folk see people who are less fortunate than ourselves is it? you should be ashamed of yourselves for even thinking such comments,some of these people are ill,some are victims of drug pushers and some have just fallen on hard times, have any of you got any idea what it;s like to be homeless,  see no future for yourselves, be exploited by drug pushers,pimps and the like,if these are the sort of comments that are allowed on these pages then I want nothing to do with it,what an advert for humanity in Nottingham,every time you walk passed these poor people, hang your head in shame but thank your lucky stars you are not in that same situation

 

Rog

 

Rog

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Surely the shame should lie, at least in part, with the 'powers that be' for such a situation to have arisen in the first place.

There seems to be a constantly operating scheme of 'government cuts' happening in the UK where it is just not feasible to have a functioning, socially just and moral society.

I am tempted to ask where is all this money saved in the cuts going to? Is there a secret off-shore Never-never land accessible only to those of 'official standing' who are waiting for the day that society collapses and they can all pile into their rocket ship or submarine and escape?

I'm glad I'm out of it all and free to have these silly dreams and idle thoughts.

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The Black boy was a good looking building in it's time there's no doubt but the reality is it was old decrepit and needed a huge amount of money spending on it. I had a couple of friends work there, one a page boy, one a waiter so I occasionally saw behind the 'scenes'. The carpets were worn, the bedrooms dingy and the bathrooms really looked out of date to 16yr old me. The problem comes with the replacement, it's just not in sympathy with it's surroundings. The square, ignoring the outrageous time and cost, would be an attractive feature - in the right place! If you stick 20/21 century buildings in 18/19th century surroundings the results are usually disastrous.

So what are we looking at really - frontages and facades from a bygone age, behind them they would be unworkable in the modern era. The lace market in the 50's was a god awful pace to work (my mam worked there as a machinist), the buildings were dark, had narrow stairs, cold work spaces, the streets made collection/delivery difficult and to  be honest it was lucky to survive.

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3 hours ago, jonab said:

I am unable to comment on the current modern buildings in Nottingham as I haven't seen them but my memory is of a load of cheap, flimsy tat replacing what were strong buildings which were meant to last and which had some architectural merit, not pastel-tinted plain boxes.

 

Architecture is still alive and well in the UK - I watched a programme on BBC satellite last night discussing the RIBA Stirling prize 2018. There were some incredible buildings in competition. That is real architecture - not that of some snotty-nosed undergraduate whose only design talents lie in the rearrangement of bits and bobs shaped like fag packets and matchboxes - and the concomitant 'planning officials' who give their 'approval' but buildings of REAL merit.

 

Have a look at the programme if you can.

Have to say I was a little disappointed with the finalists in this years Stirling Prize, jonab. No surprise that Norman Foster scooped the prize, the Bloomberg Centre not especially inspiring to my eyes though. I made the point earlier about client brief. The mega-billionaire Bloomberg can afford the services of Foster ( personal worth approaching £200m ) to produce a statement piece. The Council or businesses looking to develop property around the city probably have shallower pockets.  

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The Council or businesses looking to develop property around the city probably have shallower pockets.  

 

Maybe so but they have more than empty fag packets and matchboxes to inspire them.

 

As I tried to point out though, I am not now well placed to comment as I have not visited the fair city for so long.

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Client brief again, jonab. A few weeks ago I spent the day with my son at the Pompidou Centre. The building is unique and and controversial, we both love it. I reckon most folk in Nottingham wouldn't agree, should anything as different as that ever be proposed for Nottingham.

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I often see comments on how much rubbish is strewn about streets and its the Councils role to clean them, but who dumps all this rubbish there? there is plenty of rubbish bins provided.  Also the same peoples stock reply for many things is that they should do something about it, but these things need paying for, but most people do not want to pay any more and the council waste money on items they personally don't want. Well how many of these people take the time and effort to take the Councillors to task if we all did ,instead of grumbling, they may take notice of us.

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Given the number of asymmetric, lopsided, threatening structures they throw up these days, I have reached the...possibly erroneous...conclusion that architects are p*ssed most of the time.  That's certainly how it seems to me. The Golden Ratio replaced by the Amber Nectar? Or worse.

 

As for building interiors looking a little tatty, I don't mind. Sparkling white, clinical, Ikea-based trash doesn't appeal to me. In any event, if tatty is out of fashion, why are so many people queuing up to buy pieces of good brown furniture that some maniac with no soul and a tin of eau de nil paint has maimed, sold for a small fortune and dubbed "shabby chic"?

 

I don't understand the modern world, don't like it and refuse to be drawn into it as far as possible.

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1 hour ago, jonab said:

those of 'official standing' who are waiting for the day that society collapses and they can all pile into their rocket ship or submarine and escape?

The sooner the better and good riddance. They can take their barmy ideas with em!

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So to summarise a few points made, Nottingham architecture should ideally comprise a mix of listed buildings, cutting-edge ( read lop-sided ) conventional ( read matchbox/fag packet ) and sympathetic restoration. This in order to fairly satisfy a range of differing views.

 

Sounds good to me. In case anyone can't see it, that's what we've got!

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Oh. I love the Nottingham of my childhood, but there it remains. In my childhood. The fogs, the smells, the buildings, the buses and the neighbourhoods. All a long time ago.

 

I do think that with a little sense, things like the Central market could thrive again. With the emerging trend for organic and fresh food, a city centre market providing excellent quality food, cheeses, wines, meat, then this would be possible. My example would be the Borough Market in Southwark. Nottingham is crying out for this type of market!

 

I do not share the cynicism that Nottingham is not worth its salt. It is a beautiful city, it has much in its favour. Certainly it is not like it was, but we are where we are. It is pretty in a way that Newcastle, Manchester and Leeds are not. It is certainly thriving. It is relatively safe. I could take you to towns like Middlesbrough where it is decidedly NOT safe. At night Boro is positively dangerous. Nottingham is not anywhere near as menacing. 

 

Nottingham is also interesting. It has bars which equal those in London and for curry it beats any city hands down... I am talking about curry corner on MMW and Mount Street. Although it does not specifically have a China Town, Chinese restaurants are good. There are many interesting restaurants which I have neither the time or money to go to, but they are there. I am all for the Lace market being full of curious cocktail bars and clubs. The unique building structures (Well at a push some parts of Leeds do look like that) have the potential, to be wonderful quirky places and deeply fascinating. 

 

I went to Mundella so I know the Embankment well. It is still lovely. A peaceful walk along the river, and so close to the town is a joy. OK I will admit, if Arkwright Street still existed, the walk into town would be immensely better. 

 

Real ale. A subject near to my heart, but probably will stop off in my liver. Nottingham excels at real ales. I am amazed at the high quality and availability of superb beers. It really is stupendous. Every week there is a pub or bar opening that serves good quality beers. Nottingham is quite compact compared to some other cities, so the competition provided by pubs increases the quality and the different types of beers. I dont have a beard, a notebook or a beer-stained jumper, but I do admire the work of Notts CAMRA. However, I would say to CAMRA -  stop  now, you have won. 

 

I rubbed the rose tint off my glasses a long time ago, but every time I return to Nottingham I find it a resurgent exciting and beautiful city. 

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Don't get me wrong I love my City. I have lived in quite a few places Arnold, Daybrook, South Africa, Anderby, Eastwood, now Jacsdale. When people ask were am I from I will always say Nottingham I always class myself as a Nottingham girl no matter where I go. Then I will always say "Yes I'm a Nottingham girl and proud to be, as you see and I'm a St Ann's girl. this is where my root's are,  the old St Ann's.

Buildings 

The University this is one of the best buildings we have old!  yes!   but still in good condition we have Jesses Boot to thank for giving the Uni for our city.

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Both of my Children now  50ish, have a love of Nottm, passed on to them from me. It comes from their visits home to see my family when they were younger. Sadly most have passed away now so we don't travel home as much these days.

 

We live 25mins train ride from  Bham but I can't take to the place at all, another city that has lost some fabulous architecture.

 

Our son and his partner really love Nottm and have a couple of city breaks there a year, not long back from one. They stay at the IBIS on Fletcher gate and come rain or shine have at least two visits to Wollaton Hall, lasting 3/4 hours a time. They were at Nottm on  Goose fair week but didn't realise at the time. When they found out it opened on the Wednesday, they walked up Mansfield Rd in the evening and had over two hours walking round. They loved the atmosphere and sampled all the treats of the fair(being foodies like Momma). It finished their break off  with a great tradition thrown in as well.

 

They don't remember the Nottm that I knew, but they certainly love the city as they know it, and I am very proud to be a Nottm Gel, and after all these years I have never lost my accent, and no intention of losing it now. Mi ducks.:)

 

PS Just remembered. The university is top of the list for Gdaughter as we have taken her to four now and Nottm specialises in Maths, which is her best subject.

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Rog, I'm afraid you've got the wrong end of the stick, regarding the types of people lolling around on the Council House steps. 

Begging and alcohol consumption are banned in the city centre I think, and anyway, I've not seen the wretched souls you mention.

The ones I was referring to are  generally just scruffy groups of teens and twenties who make the entrance look untidy. There's plenty of places to sit around the square. 

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Rog, I've just re read your post, and Lizzies and mine too. I can't for the life of me see what you're getting uptight about. 

Neither of us said anything remotely derogatory or inflammatory. Just generalising slightly re the step sitters !

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A demonstration of how some things change and others don't.

 

Long Row Central; behind the shop fronts all the old buildings have survived - until you get to the extreme left.

oNSMt3D.jpg

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