About Flying Horse Walk, formerly FH Mall Nottingham
Flying Horse Walk is a timeless boutique shopping destination and iconic walkway situated in the heart of Nottingham’s retail district, uniting the busy shopping area of St Peter’s Gate and South Parade.
Before opening its doors as a Nottingham shopping centre in 1988 and later becoming FH Mall, Flying Horse Walk has been home to a hotel, warehouse, shops, dwellings and five public houses – the Punch Bowl Vaults, the Blue Ball, Eight Bells, the Ship Vaults and the Flying Horse Inn – with the first of many pubs, the Punch Bowl Vaults, dating back to 1758.
Steeped in History
Steeped in history, the walkway takes its name from the 17th century Flying Horse Inn and subsequent Flying Horse Hotel. Historians believe the building served as a home and place of business for wealthy tradesmen before, and during, the 16th century when stagecoach trade was prominent in the area. After becoming an inn, the Flying Horse became a coaching destination in Nottingham with stagecoaches driving in through the South Parade (Poultry) entrance, which was then situated on Cuckstool Row, a reminder of its proximity to Nottingham’s Market Place and its historic public cucking stool (public punishment chair). In the 20th century, the hotel provided accommodation for actors performing at the Theatre Royal and for visiting cricketers playing at Trent Bridge. It is rumoured the Council ordered the Council House to muffle the bell chimes so players could sleep undisturbed before Test matches.
Over the last 600 years Flying Horse Walk and the adjacent buildings have been actively developed and adapted, following continuous changes of use and name. Despite the building’s continual evolution some unchanged structures, such as fragments of medieval stone walling in the cellars and several timbers of great age, remain and the building retains a Grade II listed status.
Links to the Past
The mock Tudor façade at the South Parade entrance visibly reflects the shopping centre’s past and the hotel’s substantial renovations by D.G Millett in 1936 before being developed into Flying Horse Walk shopping centre in the 1980s. It is believed Millett based his timber-framed design on the Rose and Crown at Saffron Walden in Essex before Bredero Properties cleared the 19th and 20th century structures to the rear away, creating a walkway through the building.
FH Mall was acquired by London & County LLP, in September 2011, an acquisition that has seen the Nottingham shopping centre revert back to its previous name, reflecting the building’s rich heritage. A complete refurbishment, rebrand and the installation of three-dimensional horse sculptures to both entrance façades have complemented the takeover helping to put the shopping arcade, whose entrance sits within an 18th century four storey brick Georgian elevation, back on the map.
The arcade was acquired by Nottingham City Council in December 2015.
Today, Flying Horse Walk is home to a range of independent shopping boutiques for the discerning shopper with finer tastes in food, fashion and fine art. Retailers include a mix of independent stores and national brands all linked by a common thread of exceptional quality, luxury, craftsmanship and the unique character of their residence.