When You Go To Nottingham

What you need to do is get off the bus at the Queen's Medical Centre (1971-75, Building Design Partnership). Go up Middleton Boulevard, turn into Lime Tree Avenue and bisect the golf course until you reach a stack of stone that is recognised as "among the most important Elizabethan houses in England".

Wollaton Hall (1580-8, Robert Syythson). Not Wayne Manor.

As you drop down past the camellia house, the twelfth tee is on your left. You may spot a plaid-strewn golfer. You may spot a stag.

Yes. There really are deer on the golf course. Take fifteen minutes to catch that photo, then carry onward.

Over Derby Road and onto Beeston Lane, you'll enter the University of Nottingham's campus. You'll pass by some staggeringly average buildings. As the road dips round and downhill you'll also pass by the timber gabled house where I was taught about the finer points of Bretton Woods.

When you hang a left round the back of the Trent Building (1922-8, P. Morley Horder) you dip down to the lake and meet knots of toddlers and lazy magpies and recalcitrant moorhens. And then you get to look back up at the Trent Building and realise that once, someone stood where you are with a vision. And made it happen.

Then you get on a bus. Alight at Canning Circus and go drink Ape Ale on keg at the Organ Grinder, with a damn good pork pie & mustard alongside. You'll then walk downhill to Slab Square then uphill along Low Pavement before turning into Lace Market and - if you're smart enough - you'll call into Keans Head and drink a pint of stout. And eat whitebait. You'll dip the first dozen into mayonnaise and the last six into the stout. You'll drop one in your pint. You'll drink it down anyhow.

Next, you may well end up in a warehouse (1912-13, John Howitt). You may not notice the stone keystones and voussoirs but the beers are bound to leave an impression.

There will have been beer. But beforehand there will have been one of the finest urban-country walks you could wish for.

Quote and architectural notes courtesy of the Pevsner City Guide to Nottingham. I love this series; any book that can teach me something new about my old stomping ground is well worth the money.