Lawrence Collin’s House, off Castle-gate

LAWRENCE COLLINS was the master gunner of Nottingham Castle during the Parliamentarian Wars, and on the cessation of hostilities he desired to settle in Nottingham and start business as a woolcomber.

The local Trade Guild thought that there were already enough woolcombers working in Nottingham, and refused to allow him to establish himself, so he applied to Cromwell, who brought such influence to bear that the desired permission was granted ,and Collins, by his business acumen and industry, laid the foundation of a business which produced a fortune.

A portion of that fortune was used in later years to establish the Collins Trust which is doing so much by way of almshouses, maternity homes, and pensions for the benefit of distressed people in Nottingham even to-day.

The house on the right of the picture was erected by Collins for his own accommodation, and it bears the date-stone "L.A.C. 1664.," showing that it was erected for Lawrence and Anne Collins four years after the Restoration and in the year in which the Conventical Act was passed. It is a charming house, and it presents to us the last example we have left in Nottingham of the moulded brickwork so commonly used as an ornament during the Seventeenth Century.

Tradition says that the room illuminated by the window with the drop shutter to the left of the picture was used by Cromwell as headquarters when he visited Nottingham immediately after the demolition of Nottingham Castle in 1651.