Slumming it: A short walk around the Glasshouse Street slum yards

A terrific tour rounď the the Glasshouse Street area. Well researched and well presentwd.

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It’s hard to find a lot of in-depth information about Glasshouse Street when researching local history, though it crops-up quite a bit in the supporting cast in other location’s tales. It gets mentioned in relation to ‘The Charlotte Street area’, a slum that used to sit immediately to the west of Glasshouse Street. It’s also heard of in discussions regarding Victoria Station, which replaced the Charlotte Street area. Central Road (later Union Road) and a public footpath passed over the platforms and tracks of the station, connecting Milton Street and Glasshouse Street. The building of the station also diverted Glasshouse Street somewhat, causing it to curve abruptly north-westwards and connect with Huntingdon Street, when it previously ambled north-east, eventually adjoining York Street (another under-appreciated thoroughfare). It modern times, Glasshouse Street grants access to Victoria Centre’s underground car park, and also hosts a pedestrian entrance to the centre for people approaching…

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‘We Must Always Love Our Own, Stuart’

A heartwarming tale fron Goose Fare of old.

The Tears of a Clown

Nottingham Goose Fair memories: ‘Big George, The Gentle Giant and my dad.

UP UNTIL THE EARLY NINETIES, ‘George the Gentle Giant’ was a Scotsman who would visit the fair each year who I remember as a youngster being a travelling attraction. Big George Gracie was a Lanarkshire man who measured fully 7ft 3ins tall, weighed 28 stone and stood in size 18 shoes. His size was caused by a brain tumour in his pituitary gland, as I understand.

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Gentle Giant – George Gracie

The big man’s living was to allow people to come and stare at him on a fairground sideshow stall for a few pennies. People would pay their money and file around his pen. The big man was a most affable fellow, in spite of it all.

I recall dad took me to the Goose Fair one early October Saturday afternoon. After the various round of coconut shies…

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Meet You by the Lions!

Nottingham Hidden History Team

by Joe Earp

Two large stone lions guard the Council House steps. These lions have become a famous meeting point for many decades for thousands of Nottingham residents.The ‘Left Lion’ in particular has long since been adopted by locals as a meeting place.

Nottingham’s Market Place or Old Market Square as it is now known has been at the centre of Nottingham life for nearly one thousand years. Throughout history, it has been a meeting place for people of Nottingham as well as the location for local events. For hundreds of years the square played host to the market.

In the late 1920s Nottingham Corporation made the decision to move the market and the 18th century Exchange building was demolished. The square was redeveloped and the Exchange building replaced by the Nottingham Council House. The Council House with its 200 foot high dome and ten and a half ton bell called Little…

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The”Handy” Map and Street Guide to Nottingham

Whilst sorting through some Ordnance Survey maps that belonged to my late father, I came across a tatty looking Handy Map and Street Guide to Nottingham.

Handy Map and Street Plan of Nottingham

The Handy Map and Street Guide

 

Measuring 90 x 64cm. The Street Plan in the centre is surrounded by several advertisers, with an alphabetical index to the street names in columns down the side. It looks as though it was produced to be placed on a wall but had been folded up.

The map is not dated but there are various aspects of it that with a bit of research suggest it is almost certainly from the 1920’s. My father was born in 1923 and it is likely to have belonged to my grandfather who lived in St Anns and The Meadows where he worked at Victoria Baths and Portland Baths. Maybe it had once been displayed in the reception at one of these places.

Tram routes are indicated by a red line down the centre of the road.

Map Porchester Gardens

Porchester Gardens showing tram route to the top of Westdale Lane

For instance there is a tram route marked along Woodborough Road to the junction with Westdale Lane. I have previously posted about the history of Plains Road Mapperley which makes reference to the demise of the tram in 1936.

In 1931 the Nattriss family started their car sales and servicing on Porchester Road. The family raced vintage sports cars and would expand onto Woodborough Road. Our obsession with the motor car was under way and unsurprisingly, the tramcar (which had extended to Westdale Lane) ceased operating 1936.

The other term used on the map is Lunatic Hospital to indicate the Coppice Hospital in what is now known as Ransom Road Mapperley. Mapperley Hospital on Porchester Road is referred to as Lunatic Asylum. Both these terms ceased to be used officially in 1930

Map Mapperley 1940s

Lunatic Hospital off Coppice Road (now Ransom Road)

Prior to the building of Mapperley Hospital the mentally ill were kept at The General Lunatic Asylum that was on Carlton Road in Sneinton where King Edward park is now.

When you look for our hospitals as we know them now, the area where the Queens Medical Centre is barely recognisable. We now have the Ring-Road and the industrial area of Lenton. There is a road called Trent Lane that goes from Leen Gate directly to the river. This appears to be the line that the ring road takes to Clifton Bridge. There is no river crossing here and the nearest option would have been Wilford (toll) Bridge. Ironically this is now on the new tram route.

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Old Lenton – Leen Gate and the River Leen shows where the Queens Medical Centre now stands.

The City Hospital is marked by a rather different title; The Bagthorpe Workhouse. The area between Hucknall Road, Sherwood and Nottingham Road, New Basford appears undeveloped. The Prison at Perry Road is titled His Majesty’s Prison.

Map Bagthorpe Workhouse

Bagthorpe Workhouse

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Valley Road in Basford now forming part of the ring road. The area undeveloped by housing.

Here are some of the businesses advertising on the map.

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Beeston’s Changing Times

Nottingham Hidden History Team

by Joe Earp

“The times they are a changing”; so goes the words of the Bob Dylan song, – words which are certainly true for Beeston. As I write this, one of the biggest changes in the town’s history is taking place. Beeston is awaiting the arrival of the extension to the Nottingham Tram system.  High Road is now closed off and around half of the shops in the Square are empty awaiting their fate. One of these is the ever popular Wilkinson’s store (Wilko’s), a shop whose loss will be much lamented.

GE DIGITAL CAMERA The Now Gone Wilkinson’s
Credit: Nottingham Hidden History Team

Changes, to the places where people live are inevitable. Sometimes change is a slow evolution and is hardly noticed. At other time, – as with the Trams, – the change is sudden and dramatic and has a huge impact. There are those who will remember the building of…

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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.”