19 October 2011

Listed buildings in Nottinghamshire on the English Heritage 'Heritage At Risk' Register

The ruins of Haughton chapel
English Heritage has just published its 2011 Heritage At Risk register for listed buildings in England. The Risk Register "includes grade I and II* listed buildings, listed places of worship, scheduled monuments, registered parks and gardens, registered battlefields, protected wreck sites and conservation areas that are at risk as a result of neglect, decay or inappropriate development.

Pages 59-68 of the East Midlands summary document highlight the heritage assets at risk in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire. Entries include Annesley Hall (last occupied in 1974 and a worry to locals ever since), the Roman fort at Scaftworth near Bawtry, the ruins of the medieval chapel at Haughton near Walesby, the west front of Newstead Abbey, Worksop Manor Lodge (seriously damaged by arsonists in 2007) and the Roman vexillation fortress at Osmundthorpe near Southwell.

16 October 2011

Open day at Kirkby Hardwick excavation, 15 October 2011

I had an interesting time on Saturday morning wandering around the archaeological excavation at Kirkby Hardwick near Sutton in Ashfield. The ruins of an impressive house dating from the 16th century stood here for many years until the wrecking ball demolished most of it in 1966. Nottinghamshire County Council's Community Archaeology Team, along with local volunteers, have spent the last fortnight trying to determine how much of the complex has survived among the trees.

The archaeologists were very informative and helpfully explained the site and its potential. It is hoped that the Heritage Lottery Fund will provide sufficient funding for further seasons of work on this intriguing site.

5 October 2011

Kirkby & District from Old Photographs

Amberley Publishing has just sent me a review copy of 'Kirkby & District from Old Photographs' published last year. Kirkby-in-Ashfield was a predominantly agricultural village until the mining industry and the railways transformed it in the late 19th century.

The photographs are from the archives of the Kirkby & District Conservation Society and they have been carefully selected to reflect all aspects of life in the town: work, sport, education, religion, entertainment and heritage. There are some evocative images of some of the fine houses, such as Kirkby Hardwick and the Manor House, that were lost in the destructive 1960s and of well attended Whitsuntide marches which, to my surprise, continued into the 1960s. One of the most eye-catching photographs is the snapshot of a bricklayer balancing 10 bricks on his head!

It is a fine collection of images with very informative (and occasionally amusing) captions.