Back in September 2021 and March 2022, I explored the wonderful Nottingham Express Transit trams, trying to visit all of the stops. I also crossed a couple off the list back in October 2022 on a day trip to Nottingham that wasn’t written up on this blog. It was a rainy start to Monday 20th March 2023 when I returned to Nottingham to finish the job of visiting all the tram stops.
The day began with me committing fraud on the trains. I use split ticketing to save a few pounds on ever journey, and bought tickets from Burton on Trent to Beeston, and Beeston to Nottingham. This meant that I had to be on a train which called at Beeston, but I opted to take a later train from the one I had originally planned to, which was direct from Derby to Nottingham. The guard checked my ticket between Burton and Derby, and it was only while I was on the train at Derby that I realised my mistake. The guard checked tickets from Derby as the train left the station, so I just stared out of the window and hoped that he would just walk past me, which he did. So I got away with it.
If CrossCountry’s fare enforcement officers are reading this, the above never happened.
After arriving at Nottingham station and a quick stop off at Nottingham station’s newly- refurbished facilities, it was time to hit the trams. I walked upstairs to the tram stop at the station, and after figuring out which way I was supposed to be heading, I climbed aboard my first tram of the day and headed north to Lace Market.
After Lace Market, I had a walk through the city centre to the next stop, Royal Centre. I managed to get lost on the way (a tip for walking between tram stops: follow the tram tracks) and ended up walking up a narrow side street called Hurts Yard to get to the tram stop. Royal Centre is named for the Theatre Royal which stands close to the tram stop. With my city centre obligations now complete, it was back on the southbound trams to visit the next stop, Meadows Way West. Fun fact about Meadows Way West, it was originally going to be called Meadows North.
The rain hadn’t stopped since I got to Nottingham, and it carried on as I walked to the next stop, NG2. I had to cross the slowest pedestrian crossing in Nottingham to get there. NG2 is the name of a business park on the banks of the River Leen. I caught the next tram and rode it one stop to Gregory Street.
From Gregory Street, I made the short walk through the Queen’s Medical Centre to the tram stop which bears its name. On the way, I was almost distracted by a sculpture park next to Priory Church, but I stayed focused on the job in hand and carried on walking to the tram stop. The tram line to QMC had to be specially modified to limit electromagnetic interference which could have affected the hospital equipment. The tram I boarded sailed over the nearby Ningbo Friendship Bridge, named after one of Nottingham’s twin cities in China, and took me to my next stop at Middle Street in Beeston.
I had a quick lunch stop at a nearby supermarket, then walked to Beeston Centre tram stop, the very first one I ever visited back in September 2021. I rode the tram two stops to High Road – Central College, from where I walked back to Chilwell Road, to catch the tram down to Inham Road. The rain had stopped by now, and I had a short break at a small park near the tram stop to eat my lunch, then walked back to Inham Road to make the long trip back to Nottingham station to switch tram lines.
After riding the Green Line for a couple of hours, I switched over to the Purple Line for the next and final phase of the trip. My first tram was to Meadows Embankment, from where I walked back one stop to Queens Walk. I had been to Meadows Embankment before, it turns out, but I didn’t take a photograph of it at the time. Meadows Embankment was originally going to be called Queens Walk, and Queens Walk was going to be called Meadows Centre, but public demand led to the present naming convention.
It was on the next tram that I made my first big cock-up of the day. I was supposed to get off at Wilford Lane, but ended up getting off one stop earlier at Wilford Village. It turned out fine, though, as the weather had improved from dull to sunny, and I had a pleasant walk down a path which runs alongside the tram tracks to the next stop at Wilford Lane. I discovered that the tram line follows the route of the former Great Central Railway which ran from Manchester Piccadilly to London Marylebone Station from 1899 until its closure in 1969. I had just missed a tram at Wilford Lane, but it gave me some time to ready myself for the last leg of the journey. The next stop was Southchurch Drive North, from where I walked to Rivergreen to board the tram to Holy Trinity in Clifton.
I disembarked at Holy Trinity and walked one step back to Clifton Centre, the 50th and final stop on my Nottingham Express Transit journey.
I had a race against time to make it back to Nottingham for the next train to Burton on Trent (I made sure this train was going via Beeston to avoid any more dishonesty), but I made it back with about ten minutes to spare. That’s it for now for the Nottingham Trams; there are many proposals to extend the system further, but at the time of writing, they are all just ideas in a planner’s mind.
Thanks very much for reading. If you want to catch up with the previous two tram trip posts, then here’s the links:
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