Nottingham - The Arboretum
w/e 08 October 2006
All this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490

Welcome To The ArboretumGoose FairThe Forest Recreation Ground will see many visitors during the four days in early October of Nottingham's annual Goose Fair (right) but only a few minutes walk away there is an attraction that is open every day of the year. If you think an arboretum is just a collection of trees on a plot of land be prepared for a surprise for Nottingham's Arboretum Park is much more than that.


For example there is a lake in the park complete with fountain and the usual collection of waterfowl. The lake appears on a map of the area published in 1885 but in those days it was marked as 'Fish Pond'. The Arboretum at that time had been in existence for more than thirty years having been officially opened on May 11th 1852 with about 15,000 people in attendance.

The design of the park had been overseen in 1850 by one Samuel Curtis whose background was as a botanist and horticultural publicist and who had previously been involved with the design and layout of Victoria Park in London's East End.

Birds In The Aviary

I'm not sure whether the circular aviary (not pictured) constructed about 1892 was included in Mr Curtis' plans but it has now been added to and, sited alongside the lake contains a variety of exotic birds.
Victorian Garden

On the slope that leads down to the lake is a Victorian flower garden where attractive and colourful flower beds sit neatly in the well tended grass. Many plants here and elsewhere in the Arboretum would have been in evidence when the park was first laid out but a number of new species have been planted for the benefit of today's population and also to maintain the Arboretum as a botanical collection for future generations.
Lime Tree Avenue

Continuing our walk through the park we took the uphill tree-lined path known as Lime Tree Avenue. The park is just north of Nottingham's busy city centre - in fact it is the closest park to the city centre and was the first designated public park in Nottingham. It is also close to the Nottingham Trent University and many students residing in the nearby Victorian houses often enjoy the peace and tranquillity the park offers as a relaxation from their studies.

Lime Tree Avenue leads to this circular flower bed where four paths through the park meet. The Arboretum continues on the other side of the tunnel to an entrance on North Sherwood Street but we turned left here to complete our circuit of the park. The said tunnel under Addison Street is one of nine structures in the Arboretum that has been designated with Grade II status on the English Heritage Register of Historic Parks and Gardens. Another is the circular aviary mentioned earlier.
Dahlia Border

The left hand path splits into two, one leading through an avenue of trees known as the 'Woodland Walk' and this one above, meanders by the famous 'Dahlia Border', full of dahlias of all shades and varieties. This splash of colour seen from Lime Tree Walk merited closer inspection and it certainly does not disappoint.


Since 2002 much restoration work funded by the Heritage Lottery Commission has been undertaken in the Arboretum and if this rainbow coloured border has benefited from that grant, it has been money well spent.

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