So I had a bit of a poke around Tobacco dock the other day (it doesn't look like it's actually (officially) open but no-one stopped me sneaking in)...the thing that got my feet to wander in that direction was this-
-(you might have to click to zoom in)...clearly someone was a bit annoyed about the prominent blue sign luring people in under false(?) pretences (there were clumsily arranged barriers everywhere blocking entrance) -
- the most frequent offenders almost certainly being the large number of drivers of lorries and vans taking a break in the unofficial "Pennington Street public lorry park and truck stop" (i.e. the entire street) - every cab had a snoozing person lounging in the shade...anyway, I wandered in a little further, up a flight of stairs -
- it's actually very smart in there, but has the feeling of an empty office block, or an abandoned shopping centre (just waiting for the walking dead to come stumbling around the corner)....One really cool find though, not far from there -
- a large bronze statue of a boy and a tiger -
- there to commemorate an incredible story...in the mid 1800s a German guy called Charles Jamrach was running a highly successful (in fact, the largest in the World at that time) exotic pet shop located on the "Ratcliffe Highway" (later just "The Highway" as it is known now) called "Jamrach's Animal Emporium". On one fateful day in 1857 an adult Bengal Tiger managed to escape and (during it's bid for freedom) paused to grab a passing eight (or nine) year old boy who had spotted the animal and decided to go and give it a pat. The tiger attempted to flee with his snack (and probably would have been successful) but for the quick action of Jamrach who "came running up and, thrusting his bare hands into the tiger's throat, forced the beast to let his captive go". The kid got £300 in damages and the tiger went on to become a star attraction of Wombwell's Travelling Menagerie (which toured the fairs of Britain - and was invited to the royal court on no less than five separate occasions - three of them before Queen Victoria)...!