Sneinton shown within Nottinghamshire
|OS grid reference|
|District||City of Nottingham|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||East Midlands|
|UK Parliament||Nottingham East|
Sneinton (pronounced "Snenton") is a village and suburb of Nottingham, England. The area is bounded by Nottingham City Centre to the west, Bakersfield to the north, Colwick to the east, and the River Trent to the south. The area is well known for Green's Windmill which stands prominently at the top of Sneinton Hill.
The history of Sneinton is inextricably tied to that of its near neighbour, the City of Nottingham. When the area that is now Nottingham was settled by the Anglo-Saxon chieftain "Snot", he named the settlement Snottingham (the homestead of Snot's people, where Inga = the people of; Ham = homestead), and the area east of the city, also settled by Saxons, was called Snottington (the suffix tune = farmstead settlement). Sneinton is mentioned in the Domesday Book, where is referred to as "Notintone", which represents the Norman pronunciation of an Anglo Saxon placename, with the "Sn" dropped in favour of "N", which was easier to say in the Norman language. The Norman pronunciation of "Nottingham" stuck, whereas their pronunciation of "Notintone" did not. In the years between 1086 and 1599, Sneinton became the agreed way of spelling the village name.
Much of the land surrounding Nottingham sits upon soft sandstone ridges which can easily be dug with simple hand tools to create artificial cave dwellings. The area was once known in the Brythonic language as "Tigguo Cobauc" meaning "The Place of Caves" and was referred to as such by the Bishop of Sherborne Asser in 893 AD in The Life of King Alfred. Cave dwellings extended out into Sneinton, wherein they were referred to as the "Hermitage", being as they were occupied by members of a reclusive religious order. When Manvers Road was first constructed, several brick buildings were built facing into the sandstone, using the caves as back rooms. In 1829 a rock collapse destroyed these buildings, and in 1897 a railway expansion forced Manvers Road to divert, cutting away much of the rockface, erasing most of Sneinton's remaining caves. What little remains can still be seen along the edge of Sneinton Hermitage.
In 1801 the population of Sneinton stood at just 558. Sneinton was then no more than a village about a mile outside of Nottingham town centre, standing on a high ridge overlooking the valley of the River Trent. Green's Mill, an iconic red brick tower mill, was built around 1807 on the site of a previous smaller post mill. When the founder of the mill died, his son, renowned mathematician George Green, inherited and operated it until his death in 1841. At the time, a major local industry was the brickworks, and most of the existing terraced houses were built in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The brickworks themselves, sited at the eastern end of Sneinton Dale, have long since been demolished to make way for additional housing. Near Green's Windmill stood the imposing Nottingham Lunatic Asylum, the first County Asylum to open in England, which existed from 1812 to 1902. It was later converted into a boarding school named King Edwards, governed by the infamous head master Alfred Tanner and his wife Mary. Many of Sneinton's children were killed in industrial accidents at the school. It has since been demolished and is now the location of King Edward Park. By 1851, Sneinton's population had grown to 8,440. With the population continuing to rise, Sneinton was officially incorporated into the borough of Nottingham in 1877. By 1901, the population stood at 23,093.
During World War II, Sneinton suffered a large number of bomb strikes amidst The Blitz. A map produced by the local Civil Defence Departments showed that all but 50 or so of the 479 high explosives dropped on Nottingham landed within a mile radius of Newark Street, Sneinton, and many of the industrial units on Meadow Lane received direct hits.
In the 1930s, Nottingham began to address the problem of overcrowding. Many people in Sneinton at the time we living in cramped, unfit-for-purpose damp Victorian housing. These homes were generally rented, so it was a trivial process use clearance orders to evict tenants. Unfit houses were demolished, and the land redeveloped under the "Carter Gate" redevelopment. Later in the 1950s came the "Chedworth Estate" redevelopment. A large amount of modern housing was built during this period, as well as five multi-story tower blocks, all of which stand to the present day. Around this time, many economic migrants began to settle in Sneinton, drawn by affordable housing near to places of work. People from the West Indies, Southern Asia, Eastern Europe, and Africa are all represented in Sneinton, but the greatest single population comes from Pakistan. As result of this mixed migrant population, the area has a multicultural flavour, and has a diverse range of restaurants and stores. In 2011, the population stood at 12,689 people, of which 60% was white, 20% Asian, 8% black, 9% mixed, 2% other.
In the 21st Century, Sneinton has retained a sense of community, giving it a village-like feel, which has so far resisted gentrification. As of 2014, Sneinton has the 11th lowest crime rate out of the 25 Nottingham districts, beating all other comparable inner city areas (such as St Ann's, the Meadows, and Radford). Although a few in Nottingham still consider Sneinton to be one of the rougher areas of Nottingham, house prices have risen over the past few decades. Housing still remains cheaper in Sneinton than it is in other Nottingham suburbs, though this may change when the planned "Eastside" urban renewal projects beside Sneinton are completed.
Sneinton has a traditional open-air public market situated at the north-western end of Sneinton, where the district meets the city centre. Though the Market has struggled in recent years due to its relative isolation amongst surrounding derelict buildings, Sneinton Dale and Sneinton Boulevard, the two main high streets through the village, have weathered the recession and are currently thriving. The Sneinton Business Forum represents over 160 local businesses including a large number of local retail outlets, selling a wide variety of products and services to the local community.
There are major plans to dramatically renovate Sneinton Market and the entire area that currently forms a buffer zone between Sneinton and the Nottingham city centre. This urban regeneration project has been called "Nottingham Eastside" by developers, but the start date has been pushed back numerous times, due to a lack of funding amidst the Great Recession. The Eastside development ties in with Nottingham City Council's ambitions to develop the south eastern part of the city centre into a "Creative Quarter". The area includes the Lace Market, Hockley, Broadmarsh East, the Eastside Island site and BioCity, the project aims at creating growth and jobs. In July 2012, the government contributed £25 million towards a £45 million venture capital fund, mainly targeted at the Creative Quarter.
Sneinton has four primary schools, Edale Rise Primary and Nursery School, Greenwood Infant and Nursery School, the Iona School, and the Jesse Boot Primary School. There is one secondary school in the area, Greenwood Dale School, and also a public library, both of which can be found on Sneinton Boulevard. Jesse Boot and Greenwood Dale both are run by The Nottingham Academy.
Sneinton has several parks within its borders, such as Belvoir Park, King Edward Park, but by far the largest green space is Colwick Woods. Colwick Woods lies to the east of Sneinton, and, at 50 hectares or 123 acres, is almost as large as Sneinton itself. It is a mixture of grassland and ancient woodland, and forms a Local Nature Reserve and a Site of Special Scientific Interest. The ancient woodland is a habitat for indicator species such as dogs mercury and ramsons. The site is rich in mammal species including both species of pipistrelle and noctule bat. There are many well-maintained and waymarked public rights of way spanning the site, along with several desire paths that run throughout the woods. The woods and meadows, unusually close to a city centre, are very popular with local people for outdoor activities including walking, mountain biking, and other activities.
Wheelchair access is only from Greenwood Road to the open grassland at the north end as steep hills are a characteristic feature of most of the site. Greenwood Dale High School shares a boundary with the reserve and educational events have been held in partnership with the school including photographic scavenger hunts and sapling collection. Open days are held in the summer allowing the public to be actively involved with the reserve. Colwick Woods has an active Friends Group who meet regularly to discuss the condition of the site and carry out practical nature conservation in the woods.
||It has been suggested that this section be split into a new article titled Sneinton Festival. (Discuss) Proposed since March 2014.|
Sneinton Festival is a local cultural event that takes place every year in the month of July. The first festival was held in 1995, and is ran by The Festival Group, a volunteer group made up of local residents, representatives of local organisations, community groups, schools, church, youth and play groups, artists, musicians, performers and local project workers. Since 2002, the group has been supported and coordinated by the Sneinton Community Project. Each festival is organised around three individual elements: initial workshops, a week-long festival, and lastly a carnival day.
Workshops, organised by The Festival Group, take place several weeks before the festival, and bring young people together to be creative, most often in local schools and youth groups. The workshops are based around the year's theme, building the artwork, decorations and costumes for the Carnival Parade as well as holding dance and performance workshops. Where possible, the artwork is made using scrap materials - either from the scrapstores, members donations, or found items. School competitions are held to produce the year's festival logos, publicity, as well as to create more material to be used throughout Festival Week.
Every year the Festival is organised around a different theme, which is used when producing artwork, costumes, performances and also surrounds many of the events themselves. Within these themes the group also tries to focus on community issues such as recycling, differing cultures, use and access to the media, or science and technology. Previous themes have been:
- 1995 – People and Places (world culture)
- 1996 – Old and New (recycling)
- 1997 – Sneinton-on-Sea (inner-city seaside)
- 1998 – Planet Sneinton (sci-fi & technology)
- 1999 – One upon a time in Sneinton (world folklore)
- 2000 – Sneinton Millennium (one thousand years of people in Sneinton)
- 2001 – Technicolor Sneinton (colour, patterns and psychedelia)
- 2002 – Magic Sneinton (magic, conjuring and mystical stories)
- 2003 – Channel Sneinton (television, video, film and media)
- 2004 – Sneintopoly (board games and play from around the world)
- 2005 – no theme specified
- 2006 – Sustainable Energy Sources (green energy)
- 2007 – Earth, Wind, Fire, Water (green energy)
- 2009 – Sneinton's Got Talent (based on Britain's Got Talent)
The Festival Week begins on a Saturday, and involves seven days of events held in and around the area. They included exhibitions, displays, open days, performance, entertainers, socials, food tastings and multicultural events run and developed by local groups and organisations under the co-ordination of the festival committee. The events are free and open to everyone and endeavour to reflect the diversity of the local community and represent cultures, age and gender.
Festival Week culminates in Carnival Day, held on the next Saturday. The Carnival Parade includes a variety of floats, fancy dress, costumes, event performers, samba bands, jazz bands, youth bands, dancers, jugglers and clowns. The Festival then continues in the Hermitage Square when the Carnival Parade arrives, and features an afternoon of free and diverse entertainment, including music performers, dance groups, circus performers, fire eaters, jugglers, magicians, puppet shows, poetry readings, story tellers, as well as karate, gymnastic, aerobics and sport displays. There are lots of refreshments available, including Asian, Bosnian, West African, French, Italian and Afro-Caribbean food, as well as a traditional British cake stall.
The Sneinton Dragon is a large sculpture that stands at the junction of Colwick Loop Road and Sneinton Hermitage. Made from stainless steel, it was created by local craftsman Robert Stubley after residents of Sneinton were asked by the Renewal Trust what they would like to see as a piece of public art to represent their area. It was commissioned by Nottingham City Council and was unveiled on 21 November 2006. The dragon stands 7 feet tall, has a wingspan of 15 feet and took 3 months to finish. During the Christmas period, somebody puts a Santa hat on the dragon. Unfortunately, the hat often disappears a few days later.
- See also List of public art in Sneinton.
Sneinton is sited very close to all four of Nottingham's major sporting venues. The Meadow Lane Stadium is home to Notts County F.C., the oldest football team in the world to currently play at a professional level, and the City Ground is home to Nottingham Forest F.C., a current Championship League team. Trent Bridge is a cricket ground that has hosted international cricket matches since the 1830s. National Ice Centre is an Olympic-sized ice rink that is both home to the Nottingham Panthers, and forms a major music venue of Nottingham.
Nottingham Racecourse, the local horse racing track, is also nearby, as is the greyhound racing track. There are several gyms in the village, including the award winning Victoria Leisure Centre. Carlton Town F.C. is a local football team, that was originally founded as Sneinton F.C. in 1904. There are two local basketball teams; the men's team is the Beeston Tropics, and the women's is the Nottingham Wildcats.
Sneinton is a very diverse part of Nottingham, and as such, a wide variety of faiths and beliefs are represented within the area.
The main religious denomination within the Sneinton area has traditionally been the Church of England, which is currently represented by four churches: St. Christopher's, St. Cyprian's, St. Matthias' and St. Stephen's. Two former Church of England sites are currently run by other denominations, namely St Alban's, which is now Catholic, and St. Luke's which is now the Congregation of Yahweh. The Albion Congregational Church also lies within Sneinton. St Mary's and St. George's is the local Coptic Christian place of worship, and Bethesda represents the Pentacostal faith. Beyond Christianity, there is also a Hindu Temple & Community Centre on Carlton Road, and the Jamia Masjid Sultania mosque was recently built on Sneinton Dale, giving the Muslim community a place to worship.
Sneinton was the birthplace of the mathematician (and miller) George Green (born 1793) who lived in a house close to one of the village windmills, one of which he owned and worked. William Booth, the founder of The Salvation Army, was born in 1829 in the house which is now The William Booth Birthplace Museum, located on 12 Notintone Place. Another famous son of Sneinton was the bare knuckle boxing champion, Bendigo. A public house in the area still proudly bears a statue of the figure above its door, though it is now named "The Hermitage". A more recent Sneinton celebrity is the film director Shane Meadows who lived in Sneinton for many years and filmed some of his early works partly in Sneinton, including Small Time.
Sneinton is twinned with the following cities:
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Sneinton.|
- Sneinton.com - Sneinton Community Website
- Sneinton Business Forum
- Sneinton Market Official Website
- Green's Windmill and Science Centre
- The William Booth Birth Place Museum
- Lord Nelson, a popular pub in Sneinton
- Colwick Hall and restaurants in Colwick Country Park
- Photographs of The Sneinton Dragon from Nottingham21
- Photographs of Sneinton Hermitage Caves from Nottingham21
- Article about Sneinton caves
- Information about regeneration projects close to Sneinton
- Article about Sneinton Festival 2007
- Article about Sneinton Festival 2013