Tuesday, 31 January 2017

A wintery city downhill walk a short bus ride away from Beeston

One of the frustrations of waiting to have open heart surgery is that I am slowing down at what appears to be an increasing pace. I can no longer manage more than the slightest of inclines, but on the flat and downhill I can still walk a mile or so if I pace myself — which is how I found myself trying to think of a walk I could manage, with Susan on hand to make sure that I didn't overdo it, and what follows is the walk we did yesterday.

From Beeston catch a 36, Y5, Indigo or L10 to Canning Circus (I only show Nottingham City Transport routes 35 and 36 because the walk is going to be added to my History from a 35 Bus map). We actually caught a beloved L10 from near our house up Wollaton Road, which also goes to Canning Circus and the Victoria Centre (hourly, Monday-Saturday daytime).

So, the map first and remember just click on any image to enlarge.

1. This is the beginning of  Newcastle Terrace. To the right of the lamp-post is a roadway to Newcastle Drive and The Park Estate. At this point you have your back to the now closed Canning Circus Police Station.

2. To the left are the backs of the houses on The Ropewalk and to the right you are looking down into The Park Estate and Newcastle Drive.

3. For about 100 yards at this point Newcastle Terrace, Newcastle Drive and The Ropewalk converge, separated by the small green to the left, which as a bench you sit on.

4. To the right of the scene in picture 3 (above) are railings through which you can look down onto the Park tunnel footpath. It was cold, damp and a slight mist clung to the footpath. 

You can find my version of a Park Tunnel walk on my old Lenton Parkviews blog which I posted in 2014. It's a bit like this one insomuch as there is a map and lots of pictures.

5. To the left of the scene in picture 4 (above) is this hanging garden and terrace.

6. The house you can just see in picture 5 (above) has this handsome plaque dated 1881 on its wall.

7. Standing on the pavement looking at the plaque you turn left and follow the footpath round and you will then have this view and you are now at the beginning of Park Terrace.

8. These delightful stuccoed houses can be seen in the distance from picture 7 (above). 

9. At this point turn round and look back and you will catch this view of on of a cluster of modern houses which line the right side of Park Terrace and are just visible in picture 7 (above).

10. At the end of the Terrace is this mix of building style and, out of view, at the end of this stretch of pavement is the beginning of this walk's high point.
11. You turn and see this, but the view gives no hint of what to expect.

12. The answer is countless steps down... 

13. and when you get to the bottom, turn and look up, and be glad you are not doing the walk from the Friar Lane and Nottingham Castle end!

14. The footsteps have taken you down to Park Valley (the name of the road) and as you turn left, a hundred yards in front is this arch across Lenton Road. At this point you turn left and up a slight hill, with the grounds of Nottingham Castle on your right.

15. As you come level with the castle's gatehouse (which is on the other side of the road), there is this sign which has only been in place a few months and someone I know who lives in The Park told me about.

I have to say it did make my chest puff out a bit because I was closely involved in the fight to have the ancient footway between Nottingham and Beeston via Lenton made a public right-of-way after The Park Estate claimed no such right-of-way existed and put a lockable gate at the point where Lenton and The Park meet. See this link to my old Lenton Parkviews blog and one of many posts I made about this matters.

16. These steps take you up to King Charles Street and back to The Ropewalk.

17. Nottingham Castle gatehouse can be treated as the end of the walk. You are on the very edge of the city centre at this point.

18. Not the best picture of Friar Lane. At this point you are looking down it towards the city centre and Old Market Square which, this week at least, is home to a very big Ferris wheel. From this point on you are always within sight of a café or eatery. Tuckers just across Maid Marian Way is a real workers favourite and does the best bacon butties, whilst a little further on, across the Square is Debenham's with its 3rd floor eatery, which offers excellent value and attracts lots of oldies and familes — always a good sign as far as I'm concerned.

Well, that's it, an unexpected city walk revealing a cityscape otherwise hidden from view. It took me 45 minutes and we lingered in quite a few places. Even in winter, with clinging damp and cold there was plenty to see. In the summer other vistas open up and it becomes a different kind of walk, but one thing I promise, whenever you do it, the view of The Park tunnel footpath and the steps will catch you attention.


  1. An excellent route, Robert, and one that is full of interest. Thanks for pointing out the new public footpath sign. That's really good to see.