Ilkeston Town Walk - Stage 19 - St Mary Street, Burns Street and Pimlico
w/e 15 February 2004

St Mary Street

This stage of the Town Walk leaves the Lower Market Place via St Mary Street. The narrow entrance widens out slightly on this S-shaped street to reveal contrasting architectural styles on each side.
The Laurels

Following St Mary Street round to its junction with Burns Street we pass this large house now occupied by solicitors. This was built around the turn of the last century and is apparently called The Laurels although I could see no evidence of the name. What could be seen however was the large brick structure on the roof which I assume is the remains of the observation platform that once surmounted the building.
Burns Street

Turning left at The Laurels we now head back towards the Market Place along the length of Burns Street passing the building seen here on the left which was formerly the Congregational Chapel. This was also known as the Independent Chapel and was built about 1849 replacing an earlier chapel of 1781. The building on the extreme left of this picture is the rear of the Scala Cinema which was built on the burial ground of the chapel. The chapel has now been converted into flats. For more information about the chapel and a view before the cinema was built visit Picture The Past and search for DCER000012
The Scala Cinema

The front of the Scala is a far more impressive site than than rear of the building. It dates from 1913 when it was constructed as Ilkeston's first purpose built cinema with a seating capacity of 1000. The 1930s saw the installation of an electrical sound system which was updated in the 1940s. "Gone With The Wind" was screened here in 1948 and this week the final episode in the "Lord of the Rings" saga is being advertised. Other claims to fame include appearances in the TV series "Boon" starring Michael Elphick and being used in another series both in the plots and the opening credits of "Shine On Harvey Moon". The car park in Pimlico to the left of the Scala was once occupied by a row of cottages but these were demolished in 1974. ( See Picture The Past DCER000406)
Market Place

Today the Scala is the only remaining cinema in Ilkeston, the other three all closing in the 1960s although the Ritz seen earlier in this series continues as a Bingo Hall. But with the cinema behind us we now leave Pimlico and Burns Street to re-enter the Market Place at the north west corner between two pubs - "The Moon and Sixpence" (formerly "The King's Head") on the left and the "Sir John Warren" to the right.
Drinking Fountain

And it is in this corner that the Drinking Fountain and Horse Trough erected in 1889 to commemorate the creation of Ilkeston Borough two years earlier still stands. The pedestrianisation scheme a few years ago made this a focal point by placing seats around it although the budget for the scheme was far in excess of the original cost of £49 for the ironwork and £35 for the granite base. The fountain and trough were donated by the borough's second Mayor, William Wade and cast by the Derby firm of A Handyside. Two more troughs presented at the same time cost less than £12 and stood in White Lion Square and near the Rutland Hotel at the bottom of Bath Street. Both have long since disappeared.

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