Nottingham has links to the legend of Robin Hood and to the lace-making, bicycle (notably Raleigh bikes) and tobacco industries. It was granted its city charter in 1897 as part of Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations. Nottingham is a tourist destination; in 2011, visitors spent over £1.5 billion – the sixth highest amount in England.

In 2013, Nottingham had an estimated population of 310,837 with the wider urban area, which includes many of the city’s suburbs, having a population of 729,977. Its urban area is the largest in the East Midlands and the second largest in the Midlands. The population of the Nottingham/Derby metropolitan area is estimated to be 1,543,000. 

There are two large-capacity theatres, museums and art galleries, the Broadway Cinema, the Savoy Cinema, Nottingham and live music venues, including the Nottingham Arena and Rock City, both of which host UK and international artists. The city hosts two music festivals annually – Dot to Dot, which takes place in city centre venues over a weekend in May, and Splendour, in Wollaton Park each July.

Nottingham has an award-winning public transport system, including the largest publicly owned bus network in England and is also served by Nottingham railway station and the modern Nottingham Express Transit tram system, the second line of which is due to open in 2015. East Midlands Airport is only 13 miles (21 km) south-west of the city.