The Match Commander

Taking inspiration from the poem If by Rudyard Kipling. Here’s a version that is right up to date.

The Match Commander

“If you can read all about your new job, when others are rubber-stamping an operational order from the previous year.

If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you, or consider you to be unworthy of your rank and only wanting to enhance your career.

If you can familiarise yourself with the layout of the ground, asking vital questions of those at the clubs involved.

Whether previous concerns had been raised, lessons learnt or even problems solved.


If you can stay on task, but still find time to observe, looking out the control room window’s vision;

To see the obvious and think ‘that needs a decision’, seeking advice and not fearing derision.

Then keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and listen to the colleagues that you respect.

If you know the truth but cannot yet speak it, then wait and give yourself time to reflect.


If you can deal with crowds and keep your virtue, then neither foes nor the national press can hurt you.

If you can wait before blaming those turning up late, or in a state of inebriation.

With Mrs Thatcher and Mr Murdoch hungry for a story; accept the complicated truth and avoid the temptation to lie too!

If you can do these things, then one day you’ll be a Match Commander, my son.”


The Pretty Windows murder part 2: Theories and speculation.

A well researched article about the Pretteh Winduz case


In the last post I described the basic facts concerning the unsolved murder of Nottingham pub landlord George Wilson in September 1963. This time I’m going to delve deeper into the crime, reflect on the facts in more depth, look at contemporary newspapers of the period, and put forward some ideas & theories. The newspapers I believe can shed some light on matters.

For those of us who didn’t experience the 1960s first hand, it’s tempting to define the period using easy pop culture references such as mini-skirts, Merseybeat and the football World Cup. Those who did live during that era would doubtless find this a short-sighted view. Flick through newspapers of the 1960s and you’ll find stories of armed robberies, knife attacks, muggings, suicide gassings, burglary and vandalism. Crime in the 1960s was not dissimilar to crime now.

I mention this to contextualise the stabbing of George Wilson. There…

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Adams Restaurant – Back to the Future


A few days ago I went to a fundraising dinner at the Adams Restaurant and Brasserie.  The event was to raise money for the Stroke Association.

Set in the heart of Nottingham’s Lace Market area; the restaurant is within The Adams Building, a former lace showroom and warehouse. It must be the finest example in the country and is Grade II listed.

Despite being 160 years old, it is the building’s recent history that makes it really special.

Go back 20 years and the building was in a serious state of decline due to rising repair costs. Many floors were structurally unsound.

In 1996, the building was acquired, restored and converted by New College Nottingham. Costing £16.5 million, the project was assisted by the Heritage Lottery Fund and European Regional Development Fund. With its future secured, even Prince Charles attended the official opening in 1999.

The college offers a variety of post 16 courses, with the Adams Restaurant providing a visible showcase for the students in the catering and hospitality sector.

The best way to access Adams Restaurant is a 1 minute walk from the Lace Market Tram-stop. Walking though the new buildings at the end of Warser Gate, a paved square opens up and the entrance to Adams is though the archway straight ahead. Go through a cobbled courtyard and into the building itself.

We were greeted by the students and our coats taken to the cloakroom. Having purchased a drink from the licensed bar, we were made very welcome with a selection of canapes. Individual fried quails egg on crostini providing something different.

The dining area is spacious, light and airy. We had pre ordered from the menu and the meal was served to a good restaurant standard. Our fellow diners seemed to have ordered everything from the menu, which had the following highlights:

Starter: Crispy pork belly, honey and soy dressing, oriental vegetables and toasted sesame seed.

Main: Grilled hake, tomato, fennel, chick pea and tomato stew with an olive gremolata.

Dessert: Passion fruit and vanilla panna cotta.

All in all; a great meal in a great location, and raising money for a great cause.

Adams Restaurant is open to the public at lunch-time during the week and also a couple of evenings. Such is the success of the catering courses that many of the students will go on to a career in the industry. Apparently top chefs Sat Bains and Marco Pierre White keep an eye on the place!