Author Post Archive

Posts by Nicholas Blake

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

In the 17th and 18th centuries, a time before Instagram, National Geographic, or even David Attenborough, there was great interest amongst Europeans in the animals which roamed distant realms. These fantastic beasts were eagerly read about in publications written by explorers brave enough to adventure to far-off lands, with detailed engravings made from eye-witness accounts …

Live on Campus! – the 1970s

This guest blog was written by student placement Jessica Clarke, 2nd year Music. Jess trawled through our holdings of student newspapers, the Entertainments Committee minutes, and Students’ Union ephemera, to research bands and performers who played at the University of Nottingham.  The 1970s were a different time: almost no one had a computer, most music was played from vinyl and the internet was not yet available to the public. It …

To the Moon! Descriptions of Lunar Travel in the Special Collections

In 1947 a University College Nottingham student wrote an article for student newspaper The Gongster called “Operation Lunar, or, Why go to the Moon?”.  The lunar voyage is imagined as a perilous affair with little hope of the intrepid explorer returning alive, due to cosmic ray intensity, the unknown effects of zero-gravity on the body, …

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Mind the Gaps

The search for student publications; a blog by Nicholas Blake, Library Assistant with Manuscripts and Special Collections. It’s tempting to think that students these days rely solely on the Internet and social media to disseminate information, Whatsapping, Snapchatting and Instagramming all the important news and gossip about their University lives. Yet print still has prestige, …

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The Unloved Chimney

In the Feb 1st 1968 issue of University of Nottingham student newspaper Gongster there appeared a riddle.  “What am I?” it teased.  Even more excitingly, it suggested that if you were to aid this forgetful soul in establishing its identity then “a reward may well be given”. The riddles’ clues were, for the most part, …

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