Ukraine Fundraising Update

An update on our Ukraine crisis tea and cake event on Saturday. 

The total amount raised was £5096. Of this, the Children’s cafe raised £240 on Saturday morning and the raffle raised over £300. We have cheques which are being paid directly to the Red Cross & cash raised is being put with electronic payments and then sent to the Red Cross.

In a while we should receive acknowledgement of our donations. We had hoped to raise around a thousand pounds. We were donated many, many more cakes than we were promised and the cash collection surpassed our wildest estimates. Huge thanks are due to the team who cooked, baked, made tea and (wonderful proper) coffee, set up, washed up and cleaned up. 

Thank you all very much. 

Thank you also to those who gave envelopes of cash, cheques, and electronic funds. What amazing generosity and what a terrific community. It is hard to imagine how dreadful it is to lose so much in such dreadful circumstances. We have seen it before in Ethiopia, Syria, and other places. Let’s hope our contribution will make a small difference to the people of Ukraine.  

Lastly, by requesting enveloped donations we offered anonymity to those who made donations. Despite donations being largely in cash it appears we are able to forward names and addresses of those who pay UK Income Tax for the Red Cross to claim Gift Aid.

If you pay little or no Income Tax this is not relevant to you. However, if any of you feel you can do this, you can download a form here to apply gift aid to your donation.

Ann is happy to receive the form electronically ( or in hard copy to the Park Tennis Club. 

Thank you all so much, Ann, Beth, Pam, Barrie, Maggie, Sharon, Jean and our team.

If you missed the event but would still like to make a donation then you can find a postal form you can download here. Alternatively you can make a donation direct to the Red Cross online here.

New Nottingham Ward Boundaries

The Local Government Boundary Commission for England (LGBCE) has announced the final recommendations for ward boundary changes in Nottingham. The new ward will come into force in the May 2019 City Council elections.

The full report and map are available at, however, a summary is below.

The Commission changed its initial recommendation for separate City and The Park wards. Feedback during consultation suggested that many people living in the proposed The Park ward used facilities and amenities in the city centre and that the two areas should be combined into a single ward. The Commission found the local evidence to join the two areas together persuasive and now proposes a two-councillor ward to cover the central part of Nottingham. The ward will be called Castle.

These are the pertinent sections (paraphrased) from the detailed full report:

58. The Conservatives and five other submissions supported a City ward, arguing that the city centre is very different to its surrounding communities and therefore has very different needs and interests. Most residents in City live in apartments surrounded by shops, restaurants, bars and offices. This is unique in Nottingham and the proposals reflected that.

59. The Conservatives and 31 other submissions supported The Park ward, arguing that it reflected the community and did not dilute the voice of the Park Estate by merging it with any of its neighbouring communities.

60. The Council and 30 other submissions objected to either a City or The Park wards, with most of the residents writing in support of the Council’s alternative proposal, which was to combine the two wards. The submissions pointed out that the Park Estate itself is purely residential and that the people who live there primarily use shops and social facilities in the city centre. In addition, by the Council’s estimate, only 55% of The Park’s electorate live in the Park Estate itself. People living in flats on The Ropewalk or Castle Boulevard in ‘The Park’ ward saw themselves as city centre residents and did not identify with the Park Estate in any way.

64. Regarding City and The Park, the Commission received some evidence to support retaining City as a single-councillor ward. However, they considered that the evidence for combining City with The Park was stronger: “While it is very clear that the Park Estate is a separate residential area, it is not a self-contained unit, as residents need to leave the Estate to access any services. In addition, the Estate itself is too small for a ward on its own and the areas we included with it, such as The Ropewalk and Castle Boulevard, appear to be an extension of the city centre. Using Maid Marian Way as a boundary would split them from their natural community. Therefore, as part of our final recommendations we are proposing to combine our City and The Park wards into a two-councillor ward called ‘Castle’, as proposed by the Council.”




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 …
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