Friday, January 04, 2008

Nottingham Education #3: Place Names

Thinking of moving to Nottingham? Good. Not sure about where to live? Even better, because I'm about to hip you to one of the great paradoxes of this lovely town.

You see, in most other cities in the UK, you can tell what an area of town is going to be like just by its name. For example, you could have never heard of London in your entire life, look at a map, and go "Hackney? That sounds like a right dump. Peckham? Ugh. Dulwich Village? Ooh, that sounds nice", and you'd be bang on the money.

Try that in Nottingham, on the other hand, and you'd be shagged. For some reason, either by fate or design, there's a strange maxim to the naming of areas, and it goes something this; the nicer an area is, the more horrible its name is, and vice versa. Don't believe me? Let's have a look at the top end of the market;




The Park

…you’re sleeping on a bench, under some newspaper

The dead, dead, dead, dead, dead nice bit of town

West Bridgford

A service station, with a Wimpy and a bust House Of The Dead cabinet

The posh but quiet bit on the other side of the Trent


Grim Dickensian village, littered with sheep carcasses

Well nice and very green part of town

Mapperley Park

A mental institution (which it was perennially associated with until Rampton came along)

Full of massive houses as big as God’s head

Lady Bay

Something dead rude (“I drove my cock-lorry right into her Lady Bay”)

West Bridgford’s little sister

With me so far? Let's now move down the other end of the scale...




Rise Park

The kind of safari park people honeymoon at

Top Valley with a nicer tracksuit

Forest Fields

Lush green eco-haven

Where the students live


A cuddly jumper-wearing uncle

A big post office, and little else

Top Valley

Luxury ski resort where Fergie goes

Massive Tesco, horrible pubs


Picturesque village in Jane Austen book

Place where Steve Austin would get started on

Hyson Green

Cricketers on the square, old maids cycling to church, etc

Youths in hoodies cycling on the pavement


The magical place of refuge that the rabbits in Watership Down were trying to get to

Known to media as ‘No-Go-Area Bestwood’ (even though there's a bus service, and everything)

The Meadows

Flowery glade where Bambi and his chums skippety-skip all day

Where Doom would have been set if there were PCs in the 70s

St Anns

Girls school in Enid Blyton novel

Definitely not a Girls school in Enid Blyton novel

This is precisely the reason why people around the country get confused about gun crime in Nottingham; when they read about St Anns v The Meadows, they must think it's some kind of varsity hockey match. I tell you one thing; when the council announce the building of a new estate called Knifington or Anal Dog Pustules, I'm putting me name down for a house immediately.


Jon Rouston said...

Except for Sneinton of course, which sounds like it comes out of someones nose, and doesn't look much different.

May Contain Notts said...

Yeah, Sneinton is the example that proves the rule.To me it sounds like a really horrible bully in Billy Bunter. "SNEINTON! Give Bunter his tuck back, you loathsome oik!"

Tina said...

When I lived in Nottingham (Stapleford), as a little girl I was convinced that Hyson Green was actually called Hyacinth Green. Which is even further off the mark...

Bright Ambassador said...

There's a house in West Bridgeford near where I park my car when going to the City Ground, and I'd absolutely love it. Three floors and extended, big garden to boot. It's on Edward Avenue, which is just to the left of the Trent Bridge/Lady Bay Bridge fork. Posh ain't the word, surreh.

evilind said...

I havent laughed so much in ages but you are so dead, dead right!!!