Sandiacre - Part 10 - Final Steps
w/e 2 July 2006
All this week's pictures were taken with a Kodak DX6490

Click here to read David Roberts' "Memories of Sandiacre" - opens in a popup window

Our final steps in this series that has taken us around Sandiacre return us to the market place which has featured in the title image of all ten parts. Just off that title image to the left is the White Lion pub where we concluded Part 9 but although it is but a little way to return to our starting point, we can extend those final steps of our walk with two optional extensions and this we will do once we have taken a closer look at a couple of buildings in the market place.

Egyptian Time

ClockMotifThe first building to look at a little more closely is today occupied by Ladbrokes and the Co-op although in the not too distant past, the Ladbrokes section was a shop that sold ex-catalogue items at bargain prices and went by the name of Scoop. The facade of the building is interesting for its pseudo-Egyptian motifs to the sides (left) and the clock surrounds (right), although when I took this photo I think the clock was on Egyptian time.
The Red Lion

Next to the Co-op is the Red Lion which, like its near neighbour the White Lion in the days before motor traffic was the norm, was once a point where horses were changed. The Red Lion was rebuilt in 1888 and local folklore maintains that the new pub was erected around the original timber framed cottage. The cottage was then dismantled piece by piece and passed out through the window, thus preventing the need to apply for a new liquor licence. On what is now the pub's car park was a farrier's but this was demolished in the early 1960s.
Padmore Moorings

That concludes our circular tour of Sandiacre but now we shall take a brief look at the optional extensions. First we head north along Town Street and by the side of Padmore Moorings on the Erewash Canal. Here we can see some of the original but relocated cast iron lighting columns that where presented to the parish by the local entrepreneur Terah Hooley. This is recorded on the columns as can be seen in the image below which has been rotated through ninety degrees.

Lighting Column Inscription.

"Presented to the Parish of Sandiacre by E. T. Hooley Esquire"
Old Chapel Building

Continuing along Town Street enables me to keep a promise I made in Part 3 of the series as we can see the refurbished clock in all its glory - this one was definitely on English time - now that the scaffolding has been removed from the former Springfield Mills building. The rather dilapidated and boarded up building in the centre of the image with a sign over the window stating 'Fancy Dress Hire' was built as a chapel in 1827 and later became Sandiacre's moving picture house.

Groundwork Erewash Valley

Immediately adjacent to it on the left are the offices of Groundwork Erewash Valley* where more leaflets describing various walks in the district are readily available.
*NB. Groundwork are no longer at this site having moved to premises in Langley Mill.
Erewash Canal

Groundwork marks the northern extent of the first optional extension but the second goes in the opposite direction. It begins as the original walk did by crossing over the canal bridge to Station Road but turns immediately right to follow the canal towpath which at this point is also part of the Nutbrook Trail. Leaving behind the hustle bustle and hurly-burly of modern day Sandiacre, walking along here is almost like a step back in time. Save for the hum of nearby traffic, this is a different world where the pace of life seems so much slower.
Sandiacre Lock Cottages

After passing under the main A52 road, even the traffic noise diminishes and the step back in time is completed on reaching Sandiacre Lock and the adjacent cottages. One of them was built as a toll cottage when the Derby Canal joined the Erewash in 1794. and today the cottages are used by the Erewash Canal Preservation and Development Association.

Bridge at Sandiacre Lock

When I started this exploration of Sandiacre I knew it would be a mix of various architectural styles from across the years with a smattering of light industry thrown in. I had even visited most of the places seen in the series over time but I didn't expect to find an oasis of tranquillity like this. Now that I have, I'm glad I followed that optional extension to the walk. The final words on the 'Village Trails' leaflet that describes the walk now make a lot more sense for I think this peaceful spot gives an impression of what the village must have been like in 1886 when John Ball penned his poem 'Sandiacre Townsfolk:
'And while the sun doth rise and set at the bidding of his maker
May peace and plenty be vouchsafed to dear old Sandiacre'.

And with that thought, we'll leave dear old Sandiacre to seek out pastures new.

 Back to Part 09

Update January 2009 - This was the final part of the original series but click here for what amounts to an eleventh part following an alternative route back to the village centre via Lock Lane and Longmoor Road.

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