Nottingham Now (2000 onwards)

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Nottingham's Old Market Square (2011)
Nottingham’s Old Market Square (2011)

1 April 2000

The Nottingham Arena and the Arena Rink of the National Ice Centre were opened to the public by local ice skating legend Jayne Torvill.

25 October 2000

The Nottingham Declaration on Climate Change was launched in Nottingham; inviting all local authorities and their local strategic partners to commit to reduce emissions, systematically address the causes of climate change and to prepare their community for its impacts.


Nottingham City Transport launched the Easyrider ‘smartcard’, the first contactless smartcard system to be introduced in the UK.

27 April 2001

The Sky Mirror, by the internationally acclaimed artist Anish Kapoor, was unveiled outside the Nottingham Playhouse; at the time, it was the most expensive piece of civic art funded by the National Lottery.


The DH Lawrence Pavilion opened, featuring a 250 seat theatre, exhibition gallery and amphitheatre, situated at the University of Nottingham Lakeside art centre next to the lake at Highfields Park.


Nottingham won the Large City category of the Britain in Bloom competition.

May 2002

Councillor Des Wilson became Nottingham’s first black Lord Mayor.

1 August 2002

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip visited the city as part of their Golden Jubilee celebrations and officially opened the Nottingham Ice Centre, before watching a special ice gala that had been choreographed by Nottingham’s Torvill and Dean.

September 2002

The Screen Room, listed as the world’s smallest cinema in the Guinness Book of Records, opened on Broad Street in Nottingham; renamed ‘Screen 22’ in 2011.


The restaurant Sat Bains with Rooms, run by local chef Sat Bains, was the first Nottingham restaurant to be awarded a Michelin star.


Nottingham won the Large City category of the Britain in Bloom competition.

2 April 2003

Edwin Starr (born Charles Edwin Hatcher on 21 January 1942) was an American singer and songwriter. Edwin moved to the UK in the 1970s, where he continued to produce music. Edwin died at his Nottingham home on 2 April 2003, following a heart attack. Edwin’s grave is at the Southern Cemetery and Wilford Hill Crematorium, West Bridgford, Nottingham.

6 October 2003

Nottingham University staff member and Emeritus Professor, Sir Peter Mansfield, was awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine for his work in the application of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).


Eurostat’s Larger Urban Zone (LUZ) definition listed Nottingham’s functional urban region population as 825,600.


Nottingham had a gross domestic product (GDP) per capita of £24,238, the highest of any English city apart from London.

9 March 2004

The first Nottingham Express Transit trams went into public service from Hucknall, through Bulwell, Hyson Green and The Forest (Goose Fair site) and through the city centre to Nottingham railway station with a branch line to Phoenix Park just off the M1 at junction 26.


Remodeling of the Maid Marian Way dual carriageway was completed, with the inclusion of wide pedestrian crossings and areas of planting to replace the 1960s pedestrian subways of stairways and ramps.

18 March 2005

Attenborough Nature Centre was officially opened by Sir David Attenborough, an award winning Visitor and Education facility surrounded by the beautiful Attenborough Nature Reserve.

9 November 2005

Nottingham City Council was named Transport Authority of the Year at the UK Bus Awards in London.

23 February 2006

Nottingham University became the first foreign university to establish an independent campus in China when a purpose-built campus, developed in partnership with the Zhejiang Wanli Education Group, was officially opened in the city of Ningbo, by John Prescott, the UK’s Deputy Prime Minister.

1 June 2006

Castle College Nottingham was formed from the merger of Broxtowe College and The People’s College.

25-29 October 2006

GameCity, the independent annual videogame festival, was launched in Nottingham.

November 2006

Nottingham University unveiled the largest magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner in the UK, using a 40-tonne 7T (seven tesla) magnet with a magnetic field 140,000 times that of the Earth’s.


Nottingham City Transport became the first bus company in the UK to introduce Ethanol powered ‘Eco’ buses.

April 2007

The £9 million restoration of Wollaton Hall, Gardens and Deer Park was completed.

12 September 2007

Nottingham won the Large City category of the Britain in Bloom competition.

6 October 2007

A 23-year-old man from Hucknall died after when he stepped in front of a tram at Weekday Cross; the first fatality since the trams were re-launched in the city.

23 June 2008

The final section of Aspire, a 60 metre (196ft) tall, red and orange steel sculpture and the largest free standing public work of art in Britain, was put in place on the Jubilee Campus of the University of Nottingham.

5 September 2008

New Art Exchange, the UK’s only centre dedicated to African, African Caribbean and South Asian visual arts, and the largest facility of its kind outside of London, was opened in Nottingham’s Hyson Green.

10 September 2008

Nottingham received a Gold Award and became Champion of Champions in the Britain in Bloom competition.

6 November 2008

A nine foot tall bronze statue of Brian Clough was unveiled in Nottingham city centre, at the junction of Queen Street and King Street, near the Old Market Square.

24 July 2009

The Sheriff of Nottingham’s Commission and Advisory Panel met for the first time to lead a debate on how to make the most of Nottingham’s legendary outlaw, Robin Hood, for the benefit of Nottingham’s residents and visitors and for Nottingham’s reputation.

September 2009

Nottingham City Council reaches agreement to purchase Capital One’s Loxley House on Station Street, enabling staff to move out of a number of old, unsuitable and expensive city centre buildings and move to a single headquarters building.

14 November 2009

Nottingham Contemporary, one of the largest contemporary art spaces in the UK, opened with an exhibition of works by David Hockney and Frances Stark.

20 November 2009

The Cabinet of the United Kingdom met for the first time in the East Midlands at Nottingham’s Albert Hall.

December 2009

Nottingham was chosen as one of 12 candidate host cities as part of England’s official bid for the 2018 World Cup.

25 April 2010

Nottingham born writer Alan Sillitoe died. Author of books such as ‘Saturday Night and Sunday Morning’ and ‘The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner’.

May 2010

Nottingham City Council started to move staff into its new single headquarters building, Loxley House on Station Street.

August 2010

The Nottingham brewed ale Harvest Pale, by Castle Rock Brewery, was named ‘Best Beer in Britain’ at the Great British Beer Festival.

August 2010

Sat Bains restaurant in Nottingham was a new entry to the top ten in sixth position in Which? The Good Food Guide.

10 September 2010

The University of Nottingham is the fastest rising UK university in the world top 100 and is the nearest Britain has to a global university, with campuses in China and Malaysia.

14 September 2010

The Campaign for Better Transport identified Nottingham as the least car dependent city in England; rated 1st out of 19 cities.

6 October 2010

Nottingham’s tram operator, Nottingham Express Transit, was voted ‘Operator of the Year’ for the second time at the Light Rail Awards.

23 October 2010

The British Art Show, a major exhibition held every five years of new and recent works by contemporary artists based in Britain, opened for the first time in Nottingham in three venues; Nottingham Contemporary, New Art Exchange and Nottingham Castle.

16 November 2010

Nottingham City Council was named Transport Authority of the Year for the second time at the UK Bus Awards in London.

March 2011

The Spirit Nottingham website was launched; listing the incredible range of the city’s music, theatre, comedy, film, art, dance and events.

22 March 2011

Huge redevelopment plans were unveiled, heralding more than £1.3 billion of spending on new projects in the city, including the proposed Victoria Centre and Broadmarsh Shopping Centre expansions, redevelopment of the railway station and construction of two new tram lines.

18 May 2011

Sir David Attenborough officially reopened the 1956 Newton and 1887 Arkwright buildings at Nottingham Trent University, following a £90 million transformation and linking of the two buildings.

June 2011

Fewkes Lace Factory in Mapperley closed; it had been Nottingham’s last remaining lace factory.

22 June 2011

The Invest in Nottingham Club showcased Nottingham’s £1.5 billion of construction projects to investors at the St Pancras Hotel in London.

8-9 August 2011

Minor public disorder, arson and attempted looting took place in some areas of Nottingham, with five police stations attacked, following the riots in London and copycat disorder in Birmingham, Manchester and other cities.

23 August 2011

Improvements to railways in Nottingham and the county in the previous 15 years led to an increase in passenger journeys at city stations of 86 per cent and of 219 per cent in the county.

6 October 2011

Nottingham’s renowned Restaurant Sat Bains was awarded a second Michelin star, making it one of the top twelve in the country; only eight restaurants in England have two stars and another four have three stars.

2 November 2011

East Midlands Airport was named as Best British Airport at the British Travel Awards in London.

21 November 2011

Nottingham brewer Castle Rock took the top prize at the Society of Independent Brewers Business Awards in London.

14 December 2011

The University of Nottingham beat 178 universities from 42 countries to be ranked first as the most environmentally friendly campus in the UI GreenMetric Ranking of World Universities.

14 February 2012

Nottingham was voted as a top ten city in Europe and ranked as a leading European city of the future in the latest analysis in the FDI European Cities and Regions of the Future 2012/13.

14 May 2012

Councillor Merlita Bryan was installed as the first Black female Sheriff of Nottingham.

14 May 2012

Nottingham Station’s new multi-storey car park opened on Queen Road, completing phase one of the redevelopment of the station into a world-class transport hub.

13 June 2012

Queen Elizabeth and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were greeted by packed crowds of around 35,000 people when they visited Nottingham’s Council House and Vernon Park as part of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations.

12 September 2012

Nottingham won the Large City Gold award for the 19th time in 20 years at the East Midlands in Bloom Competition.

3 October 2012

Nottingham’s expanding tram network was named ‘Light Rail Project of the Year’ at the 2012 Light Rail Awards event in London.

11 October 2012

Nottingham was named Transport City of the Year and Nottingham City Council was recognised as Transport Local Authority of the Year at the National Transport Awards 2012.2

17 October 2012

Nottingham’s first hydrogen fuel filling station opened at the University of Nottingham’s Energy Technology Building.4


Nottingham’s Lenton flats were demolished; five 16-storey blocks; Abbey Court, Willoughby Court, Newgate Court, Lenton Court and Digby Court.

19 March 2014

Official opening of Nottingham Trent University’s stunning new Students’ Union building, part of a £350 million overhaul and redevelopment of the city centre site.13

12 September 2014

Nottingham’s biggest fire in a decade completely destroyed the University of Nottingham’s new £20 million chemistry building during construction on the Jubilee Campus, delaying the opening of the flagship sustainable GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) chemistry laboratories by 12 months.15

18 September 2014

Nottingham won its best-ever bunch of awards in the East Midlands in Bloom competition, with its 21st Gold award in the Large City category and a hat-trick of Silver Gilts.14

18 November 2014

Nottingham City Transport took the gold awards for UK Bus Operator of the Year and Top City Operator at the UK Bus Awards in London.16

11 March 2015

The roadworks were completed to make the busy A453 main road into the south of Nottingham into a dual carriageway and in a small ceremony it was renamed ‘Remembrance Way’, to honour of the 453 members of the UK armed forces who died in the recent war in Afghanistan.

17 June 2015

Nottingham’s iconic and much loved Emett Clock was refurbished and returned to the Victoria Centre.30

25 August 2015

Nottingham’s two new tramlines to Clifton and to Chilwell opened to the public.31

30 September 2015

Staff and students moved into New College Nottingham’s new £27 million Basford Hall campus.32

November 2015

Boots UK and Dr Stewart Adams were presented with two blue plaques by the Royal Society in honour of the research by Dr Adams that led to the discovery of ibuprofen in the 1960s.

12 January 2018

A large fire caused significant damage and closed Nottingham railway station. Ten fire crews were needed to bring the fire under control.

June 2018

Restoration works to the historic murals in the dome of the Exchange Arcade, to the rear of Nottingham Council House, were completed. The murals were originally painted in 1928 by Nottingham artist Noel Denholm Davis.

4 June 2018

Hopewood Health Centre on Mansfield Road, Nottingham, was opened to patients. Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust’s brand new, state of the art, mental health services hub is for children, young people and families.

4 November 2018

A major fire engulfed a number of buildings in Nottingham’s cattle market, leading to gas cylinders exploding and several businesses being destroyed.

7 December 2018

University of Nottingham’s Advanced Manufacturing Building was officially opened on the Jubilee Campus, Nottingham, by Siemens UK CEO, Juergen Maier. The facility, consisting of lab and office space, teaching space and a specialist clean room facility, will be used by three main research groups belonging to the Faculty of Engineering.

28 June 2019

HRH Duke of Kent officially unveiled the Great War Memorial to Nottinghamshire’s fallen at the Victoria Embankment, Nottingham. The memorial features the names of all 13,482 from Nottinghamshire who lost their lives in the 1914 – 18 War, as well as civilian casualties, including nurses, two people killed in a Zeppelin air raid in September 1916 and the victims of the Chilwell shell filling factory explosion of July 1918.


Return to the introduction and contents page

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For other information about Nottingham click here

If you want to know more about Nottingham’s past there is further information in ‘Events and dates in Nottingham’s history’ and through these websites:

The Nottinghamshire Heritage Gateway

The Thoroton Society of Nottinghamshire

Nottingham Local Studies Library

2 Nottingham City Council, News Release: Nottingham is best UK city for transport (Nottingham, Nottingham City Council, 12 October 2012)
4 Thorne, Emma, Press Release: City’s first hydrogen filling station opens at new ‘green’ University research building (Nottingham, University of Nottingham, 15 October 2012)
13 Scott, Jennifer, Nottingham Post (Nottingham, Nottingham Post, 20 March 2014) p33
14 Nottingham City Council, News Release (Nottingham, Nottingham City Council, 18 September 2014)
15 BBC News, Nottingham Website: University of Nottingham blaze: Sixty firefighters at scene (, 13 September 2013)
16 Ireland, Ben, Nottingham Post (Nottingham, Nottingham Post, 19 November 2014) p20
30 Pritchard, Jon, Nottingham Post (Nottingham, Nottingham Post, 17 June 2015) p3
31 Nottingham City Council, News Release: History made as new tram routes open (Nottingham, Nottingham City Council, 24 August 2015)
32 Russell, Dan, Nottingham Post (Nottingham, Nottingham Post, 1 October 2015) p6

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