Holiday cottages near Mansfield Nottinghamshire, East Midlands
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In and around Mansfield, Nottinghamshire
Once a thriving heartland of Midlands coal mining country, Mansfield has experienced a certain decline and in some areas regeneration. The colliery has long been closed and its employees forced to look for alternative employment where they could. Nearby Clipstone Colliery, once famed for the second highest headstocks (at the time of building) in the world, and correspondingly deepest pit in Britain, is all but closed although the headstocks still stand proudly.
Vickers Pond has now been transformed from a colliery waste ground to a playground and nature reserve with pleasant walks centred around the lake.
Mansfield used to be famous for quarrying stone and for the quality of its sand for casting. White freestone from the quarries at the south of the town was used to contribute to the building of Southwell Minster and Nottingham Castle. Red and white sandstone also came from around the area and white sandstone was extracted to build Mansfield Town Hall.
This secluded and peaceful 1850s 3 star cottage has been recently modernised and refurbished, has real log fires, and lies in an ideal setting for walking surrounded by its own private woodland and grazing land.
Cottage lies between Retford and Worksop, Nottinghamshire. The cottage is well-equipped and the bedrooms have duvets with bed-linen provided. There is a BBQ. The location of this cottage is perfect for Robin Hood and Sherwood Forest, Newark and its antiques.
A large quantity of stone was extracted in the late 1960s to help build the M1 Motorway that runs past Mansfield. The sand industry led to the establishment of foundries which produced the beautiful dolphin lamp posts on the Embankment in London and in the Mall. The sand industry continues to this day, producing building sand, sand for mouldings and brick making.
With an economy that was once largely based on coal and textiles, it's unfortunate that Mansfield Brewery is now closed; the end of the line for yet another local industry, but at least the railway station and Robin Hood Line, with links to Nottingham via Worksop, have been re-opened.
A short walk around Mansfield reveals that it hasn't befitted greatly from any industrial wealth. The town isn't noted for its architecture and indeed the number of beautiful buildings is few. The churches offer some of the most impressive examples and carry the testimony of their founders down the ages. The Church of St. Peter and St. Paul, in Church Street, originally dates back to Saxon times.
The Methodist Church in Bridge Street is a handsome square building with exceptional stained glass windows and is worth a visit and some admiration. A certain John Adams first brought Methodism to Mansfield in 1788. A pump in honour of this bicentenary was erected in the Westgate.
Public houses have also been well maintained through the years and are some of the best preserved buildings in Mansfield.
The Art Nouveau style door to the Old Library (now an arts centre with exhibitions) in Leeming Street is quite beautiful. The Palace Theatre and Museum can be found alongside it. A memorial to Samuel Brunts, a local benefactor who established the Brunts School for the education of poor boys, alms houses and residential homes for the elderly, stands elevated above the corner of the road on a shop building.
There has been a market square in Mansfield for as long as anyone can remember. The market stalls stay permanently erected between market days and offer a variety of goods including fresh fruit and vegetables. A full market is held on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, and a flea market on Tuesdays. In the centre of the Market Place is a memorial to a worthy and wealthy local resident. The Moot Hall and latterly Town Hall can be found at the corner of the Market Square. The adjoining pedestrianised high street has the usual range of shops and department stores. A modern indoor shopping centre with mulit-storey car park houses an even greater selection of shops.
The town has a population of just over 98,000, with a wide variety of housing; old properties, lots of red brick and terraced housing, new properties and estates, modest and more expensive areas like Berry Hill, but all much cheaper than the south east of England.
The town centre offers lively entertainment at weekends and evenings. There's also the fairly recently constructed Water Meadows swimming and leisure complex for family fun and frolics. There are several large parks for recreational purposes within a short driving distance for days out. Sherwood Forest and Robin Hood country are almost on the doorstep. Golfers will find a selection of courses to satisfy their drive.
One interesting fact is that people lived in caves on the Southwell Road until the late 19th century. These are now closed off to entry but can be viewed from the outside.
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