Visit Nottingham and the surrounding villages and stay in bed & breakfast accommodation:
Nottingham, Nottinghamshire. This is a largely modern city which has triumphed over many troubled periods in its history to become “The Queen of the Midlands”. The change from an agrarian to an industrial centre came with the Industrial Revolution of the early 19th century. Nottingham had long been a hosiery town, but it was not until the power-loom and the flying shuttle that it was truly identified with cotton-spinning. An adaptation of the stocking-frame quickly brought to the area the mechanized craft of lace-making, a thriving trade which benefited even local architecture.
The tempestuous story of Nottingham Castle covers nine centuries. Edward the Elder built fortifications on the south bank of the Trent in 920 in an attempt to prevent the Danes from infiltrating along the waterway. To the conquering Normans the tall bluff of sandstone to the North, with its sheer cliff providing natural defence, was the obvious site for a permanent fortress. William of Normandy reached the Trent crossing in 1068 and directed William Peveril to build the first castle on the hill. During the reign of Stephen it was destroyed twice in internecine struggles and rebuilt in 1154 by Henry II, who presented it 20 years later to his son John. When Richard Lionheart became king and departed on his crusades he left his brother John in command of Nottingham Castle and seven others. At about this time the legend of Robin Hood and his Merrie Men of Sherwood Forest gained its place in local folklore: the cruelties inflicted on the people of the Trent valley warranted opposition and it may well have happened that supporters of the absent king took armed refuge in the greenwood. To this day there is an inn with the crusading name of the Trip to Jerusalem built into the cliffside, with cellars forming a labyrinth of caves and passages in the great rock on which the castle stands.
It is recorded that after John became king and tried to enforce his authority on the landowners he on one occasion held 28 Welsh boys hostage in the castle as security against rebellion by their chieftain fathers. When there were signs of a rebellion he ordered all the 28 boys to be dragged from their play and hanged from the castle walls. Throughout the turmoil of the Wars of the Roses the castle remained a Yorkist stronghold, until with the coming of the Tudors it fell into disrepair; but it was still from here that Charles I raised his standard and plunged the country into Civil War in 1642. By 1651 the once proud fortress was an uninhabitable devastation. The ruins were bought by the Duke of Newcastle and converted into a house for his own use, but after many more years of political involvement the castle was gutted by the mob during the Reform Bill riots of 1831. Nottingham Castle is now the property of the Corporation. It is still possible to tour the many caves and tunnels leading into the Castle Rock. One of the most famous there is Mortimer's Hole, a passage through which, it is believed, Edward III and his companions entered the castle to arrest Roger Mortimer, the adventurer who because of his influence with the Queen Mother, Isabella of France, almost became ruler of England.
The city centre is dominated by the Council House, a vast building overtopped by a dome which reaches 200 ft from the ground and is modelled on that of St Paul's in London. The construction of this worthy addition to the modem development of Nottingham was completed in 1928. It contains the Lord Mayor's Parlour, the council chamber, numbers of reception rooms, and a clock with a bell named Little John after Robin Hood's outlaw companion, because of its great size. Before the Council House was built the site had for at least 400 years been the place where Nottingham's annual Goose Fair was held, an event which now takes place on the first Thursday, Friday and Saturday of October at the Forest Recreation Ground.
The University of Nottingham was established by Royal Charter in 1948, after 67 years as the University College. The University is situated in a park some 3 miles from the city centre, with the main buildings looking out across sloping lawns to a broad lake. The existence of today's superb seat of learning is mainly due to the generosity of the 1st Lord Trent, earlier Sir Jesse Boot, who presented the original building.
The stately Church of St Mary's, which is the principal of the many fine places of worship within the civic boundaries, rises 126 ft from the heart of the Lace Market. It is a splendid example of l5th-century work and is richly adorned with the buttresses and panelled battlements of the period. The interior is lit by 12 great windows on each side and treasures a glorious Madonna and Child painted by Fra Bartolomeo, the pupil of Raphael. The Roman Catholic cathedral designed in Gothic Revival style by Pugin, lies near the centre of the city; and opposite it is the Playhouse, one of the best modern theatres in England with a lively repertory company.
Nearby cities: Derby
Nearby towns: Alfreton, Beeston, Bingham, Eastwood, Grantham, Hucknall, Ilkeston, Long Eaton, Melton Mowbray, Ripley, Southwell, Sutton in Ashfield, West Bridgford
Nearby villages: Arnold, Attenborough, Bramcote, Bulwell, Burton Joyce, Calverton, Chilwell, Colwick, Cotgrave, Edwalton, Gamston, Gedling, Holme Pierrepont, Kimberley, Lambley, Plumtree, Radcliffe on Trent, Ruddington, Sneinton, Tollerton, Toton, Watnall Cantelupe, Watnall Chaworth, Wilford
Have you decided to visit Nottingham or the surrounding villages? Please look above for somewhere to stay in:
- a Nottingham bed and breakfast (a Nottingham B&B or Nottingham b and b)
- a Nottingham guesthouse
- a Nottingham hotel (or motel)
- a Nottingham self-catering establishment, or
- other Nottingham accommodation