Note regarding the Sillitoe Talk

A note from James Walker, who presented the recent Sillitoe Spring Talk (March 2018):

Many thanks for inviting me to The Park. It’s taken me 40 years to visit, proving that patience really is a virtue. Here’s the reading list I promised.

  • Alan Sillitoe, A Man of His Time (2009) – the story of Arthur Seaton’s great grandfather Ernest Burton. This is my favourite Sillitoe book of all time.
  • The Sillitoe short about the young boy who witnesses a man trying to hang himself is called On Saturday Afternoon. This appears in the short story collection Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner (1960). Please click the link to read, as the story is a free download.
  • The novel set on the Broxtowe Council Estate was The Killing Jar (2007) by Nicola Monaghan.
  • The story of the lace factory owner that I said was a kind of precursor to Saturday Night and Sunday Morning was Penny Lace (1946) by Hilda Lewis. 

One member of the audience asked me about Pat McGrath. I’ve done some research… Pat was born in Nottingham in 1954 but moved to London in 1970. He is best known for The Green Leaves of Nottingham (1970) which he wrote when he was 14! Like Saturday Night and Sunday Morning, it’s set in Radford. It tells the tale of a boy returning home from Borstal who gets involved with organised crime. The Green Leaves of the title refers to a local pub. Sillitoe wrote the introduction to the book and it was later turned into a play, produced at the Playhouse between 1971-2. Pat McGrath has also written a short story collection, People in the Crowd (1978), mainly set in Notts. There’s not much out there on him. Don’t confuse him with the author Patrick McGrath who was born in 1950. 


James Walker
Senior Lecturer in Digital Humanities
School of Arts and Humanities
Nottingham Trent University



The Tennis Club Pavilion

The Tennis Club Pavilion refurbishment is finally underway and is due for completion by February 2018.

At that point we’ll no doubt hold a party for ourselves as it will then be the NPRA’s official home. No more tents. We’ll also get back into holding AGMs, something that’s lapsed due to our collective fear of travelling beyond the gates. 
As an organisation, the NPRA have donated £6k towards the works, the remaining £100k+ coming from a combination of the Park Tennis Club reserves, the Park Conservation Trust and two successful funding applications. Nothing from the Lawn Tennis Association yet, but the Tennis Club is still working them, three years on …

What’s On around The Park – links

Here are some links to other Park and Nottingham websites, where you will find interesting updates on events and activities nearby –

NPEL (Nottingham Park Estate Ltd, the estate’s management company) –

The Park Market –

Park Neighbours Network –

The Park Garden Trail –

Nottingham Castle events –

PGT2017 – record amount raised for charity!

The 23rd Park Garden Trail was held on Sunday, 25th June 2017 in the Park Estate. This event is held every two years, when many residents open their lovely gardens to the public.

This year, 23 gardens were open, and a record £26000 was raised for local charities!

Thanks due to all who took part! Photos from the day are here on the PGT facebook page – please “Like” to receive updates on the next PGT.



Park Garden Trail 2017: tickets on sale

Tickets for the 23rd Park Garden Trail (Sunday, 25th June 2017) are now available online! Once again, we have kept the price at an affordable £5 per adult (children and young people up to age 18 are still free, too). There is also a special £10 ticket – a wonderful Mother’s Day gift – that includes strawberries and cream and a glass of fizz. Please visit our website for details –

We have a record 23 gardens and green spaces that will be open, and will have even more entertainment, activities, food, drink and farmers’ market stalls available – most of them at the Park’s hub in Newcastle Circus. Last time, we raised £20k for local charities from 5000 visitors – but of course, we would like to exceed that this year!

If you purchase your tickets online in advance you will have an hour’s headstart on the queues, as you will be able to collect your tickets/programme at a dedicated ticketpoint, and have early access to some of our gardens, from 12pm rather than 1pm. We will also email you the map of the gardens a few days before PGT so that you can plan your trail in advance.

Do hope to see you there!

the Park Garden Trail Committee

1 2 3