Last week we had a rare night out in Nottingham as an early treat for Pete’s birthday. We’d been looking forward to seeing The Cult again after we saw them in Manchester three and half years ago. However, their gig in Manchester on this tour happens to be the night before our very early flight to Madeira, so that was out of the question. But as luck would have it, I saw that they were playing Rock City while Isobel was away on a school trip. (Although that was touch and go after she got chicken pox the week before.) Just to add to the drama I got shingles, which apart from being sore, made me feel really tired. But nothing could keep me away from a good rock concert!
In my 20s I spent many, many hours in Rock City. In fact, it was the main reason I moved to Nottingham almost 20 years ago. I went for a night out with a friend on a coach trip, discovered a club that actually played proper rock music – including AC/DC – and thought I’d died and gone to heaven. After several years of going at weekends whenever I could afford it (on my meagre student budget) I finally moved to Nottingham.
I lived there for 13 years, got a post grad degree and eventually a full time job in TV, where I met Pete. To be honest, the only reason we moved was because of work. I hated my job towards the end but wanted to stay working in TV, and Pete wanted to progress in his career too. MediaCity in Salford beckoned, and I love living in Cheshire, but sometimes I really do miss Nottingham.
We stayed in the Best Western hotel in the city centre, which was great; the £10 room upgrade was well worth it. Before the concert we had a delicious meal at Marrakesh – as you can see from the photo, they cater for vegans and meat eaters! I had a fatoush salad to start, followed by musakaa rice – a spiced aubergine, tomato and pepper dish which was delicious.
We arrived to see the last few songs from the support band, and managed to get a fairly decent spot on the balcony. Rock City is exactly as I remember it all those years ago; it must be more than 10 years since I was last there! The only thing that has noticeably changed is the dance floor. When they installed the new one they actually auctioned off pieces of the old one!
The Cult never disappoint, they were absolutely brilliant. But it went far too quickly; when they went off prior to coming back for the encore I looked at my watch in astonishment. I thought the night was still young! Always better to leave a crowd wanting more though I suppose. After the gig we went for a cheeky cocktail in Bunk…I think I may be hooked on Zombies now!
I’d done a bit of research into thrift shopping in Nottingham beforehand, so the next morning I set out to explore. My first stop was one of the White Rose shops dotted throughout the city. White Rose (named after the student movement which stood up to Hitler and the Nazis in the 1940s) was founded by two students. After a trip to Rwanda with the charity Aegis, students Grace and Angie wanted to do something to help the survivors of the genocide. They had the idea to set up a charity shop that would offer “lovingly hand-picked recycled fashion”. Since opening their first shop in the Hockley area of Nottingham, several more have opened.
The shops are set out in a boutique style, making it easy to browse. I picked up a fabulous pair of heart-shaped sunglasses for £2 and a gold necklace featuring horses. I’ll be featuring these in an outfit post soon!
Another recycled fashion shop I’d heard great things about was Cow. It’s set out on two floors and has plenty of rails to peruse. However, it seems to be geared more towards urban, retro style sportswear, which isn’t really my thing. It was nice to look though!
There are also a few big charity shops in the Lace Market area, including a Sue Ryder and an Oxfam. I loved the quirky layout of the Oxfam shop, which felt like stepping back in time. I spotted an amazing pair or multi-coloured shoes from Office, which were a size 8! Of course I had to have them…it was fate!
One of my first outfit posts was taken in this same spot eight and half years ago!
I had to stop and take a few photos of this window display; it’s hard not to get depressed over the Brexit saga so anything that pokes fun of politicians is right up my street!
Before heading home we met up with some former colleagues and next door neighbours over lunch. It was wonderful to catch up with old friends. I won’t leave it so long before my next visit 🙂 Our night out in Nottingham certainly wore me out though – I slept all the way home AND the rest of the evening! Not so rock ‘n roll 😉