Monday, 15 February 2010

The delights of Derby

DSCF0138This here be a #wander I took while daughter Cat interviewing Derby University for the post of Educator for the next three years.  After dropping Cat at the college (over on the right there), I parked up and walked into Derby to check the town out.  Oh, hang on – it has a cathedral, so it’s a city. My first impression of Derby was this lovely view of some allotments.DSCF0139

Big-arsed Gate Thingy

The road down into Derby looked as boring as a ledger book, so I struck off down a side street and soon became completely lost. However, I did discover several hidden treasures of Derby’s cultural heritage. First, this big-arsed gate building thingy:DSCF0140No. I’ve no idea what it is. Google it if you’re that bothered. Down past there, and up some worn old steps, were several old abandoned mills. They were beautiful, in a ramshackle, knackered sort of way, and redolent of the textile industry which used to thrive here. Through the shattered windows could be glimpsed hints of how the interior used to look.DSCF0142 The graffiti was nothing to write home about, however. A little further on, someone had dumped this:DSCF0143 It looked like a work of bloody art to me, but I didn’t have a carrier bag big enough to take it home in, so I left it there to be gathered in by the spring grass which will soon appear.


I was beginning to get my bearings now, and turned right by a lovely old church which had fallen on hard times and been forced into prostitution as a Chinese Buffet. The final insult must have been having to submit to the name Wokmania.

Finally, though, I’d found the town (or rather, city) centre – in the picture below, you can see  Derby Cathedral at the far end of the street, thrusting itself into grey, dismal sky. DSCF0160

All the usual shops you would expect were present and correct – Clinton’s, Smiths, Waterstone’s, Boots etc. etc. et-bloody-cetera. I saw no sign of any independent little shops that might have added a much-needed touch of piquancy.

Rampant Rabbit Thruster Deluxe

DSCF0151 My hopes for some interesting retail outlets at last were briefly raised by this place (left), but sadly the very next shop along was just a Poundland. (and what exactly IS ‘Liquid Satin’, which you get free with every Rampant Rabbit Thruster Deluxe? Is it a vital ingredient? And doesn’t the rabbit get scared? I will never know, for I am far too cowardly to ask).

DSCF0148 A little further on was a market hall, which was pleasing to the eye with its stripey roofs (rooves?), and globular lighting; but again, there was nothing outstanding or remarkable about the actual stalls therein.

I did see a very pretty Chinese lady with blue hair, mind, but I doubt she’s a permanent fixture.


The Halifax Building Society building surprisingly perked me up, featuring as it did several statues that looked about ready to topple over onto the oblivious shoppers below.DSCF0156That’s Florence Nightingale up there, and I’ll bet that if she HAD toppled with murderous intent, the death certificate of her victim would have made interesting reading.

Invisible in Derby

DSCF0159I had discovered by now that I was invisible in this town CITY. People kept walking into me as if I wasn’t there. Actually, it now occurs to me that they may have simply all been overcome with a desire for physical contact with yours truly given my high sexual charisma. Yes, that was probably it.

I did quite like this clock, for its simple, angular Fifties feel. It told the correct time, too.

Finally, I stumbled across this place, which always puts a smile on Cat’s face -DSCF0149 

I bought us a couple of baguettes and Fantas, and returned to fetch Cat.






In summary