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Green Light in the City

16 Nottingham People Who Will Deck You. And Your Dad.

27 December 16 words: Bridie Squires

Bring some beef to this lot, you will definitely lose some teef. We've rounded up the 'ardest of Nottingham heads to create a list that will make you soil your kecks just reading through it. There's only one question left to ask: If there were a royal rumble between all this lot, who would be the victor?


Alright, he might bit a little bit dead, but he would still deck you. Measuring in at 5’ 9”, you’d be forgiven for thinking that you might be able to beat this lad. But beat him, you would not. Built like a brick shithouse, Sneinton lad William Abednego Thompson was a nineteenth-century bare-knuckle boxing champion who’d throw his opponents off by laughing manically and throwing insults. Then he would bob, weave, and bend his way to winning. Hence, Bendigo.

Wolfgang Buttress

Alright, maybe Wolfgang won’t deck you and your dad. But his beard will. The Nottingham artist created a massive beehive sculpture for the Milan Expo 2015, and he’s also created a soundscape to go alongside it using real bee sounds. I mean, if the latest Black Mirror is anything to go by, I’d steer clear of upsetting owd Wolfgang. He’s clearly got summat going on with the little buzzy boggers and I ain’t gonna be the first to find out how deep it runs.

Mieke Tate

Netherlands-born Mieke is an expert in kickboxing having trained in martial arts since she was thirteen years old. She moved to the UK for the martial arts scene when she was nineteen, and decided to stay after making a load of mates and winning the World Association of Kickboxing Organisations UK National Championships every year she entered. She’s also a world champion, former Domestic & General Team Leader, business owner, sensei, and mam. So don’t mess, unless you want her and her clan of students on yer back.

photo: Dom Henry

The Fish Man

He might not seem like the most obvious choice, but rest assured that owd Dave Bartram (the man who goes from pub to pub selling cockles and other fish-based snacks) can hold his own. In a previous interview with LeftLion, he said “You’re always worried that you might get jumped. And it’s happened a time or two. But not many of ‘em get away with it, because my basket likes to hit a bloke’s belly button. Oh yes. I’m not bragging, but I’ve knocked a few over in town.” Ooft, I’ll take a Pepperami instead. Cheers.

illustration: Christine Dilks

Maid Mazza

Lots of people like to bang on about Maid Marian being that fair maiden who needed rescuing by owd Rob, but we all know that ain’t true. Marian was a total badass, skilled in bow and arrow action, so if you’d like to chance a scrap, be my guest. My wager says our Maz ain’t gonna take much shit from any rapscallion around here. Merry Men-equipped or not.

Dan Hardy

They say MMA (mixed martial arts) is one of the most brutal sports going, and this Nottingham lad certainly put us on the map when it comes to UFC. With a nickname like ‘The Outlaw’, you’d be hard pushed to find someone more rebellious on the scene – he’s spoken out about trophy hunting by people within the UFC organisation as well as refusing to tap out when Georges St-Pierre nearly snapped his arm in two. Do you want beef? No.

photo: Dave Parry

Jason Williamson

A bit of speculation here, but I’d like to think that Sleaford Mods’ frontman has got a bit of welly in his whack. Someone with that much shout in his pipes has got to be able to hold his own in a scrap – even if it’s by shattering someone’s lugholes with all that decibel action. Also, the 2015 track Tarantula Deadly Cargo is – apparently – all about his rotten, stinking farts on the tour bus. So I guess he could take you down that way too.

Carl Froch

Four-time super-middleweight world champion, born and bred in Notts. He’s even battered people after breaking his hand, so you and your dad don’t stand a chance mate. Nicknamed ‘The Cobra’, this fighty bogger stuns his opponents with a ‘venomous attack’ before striking to end it all. That’s one ass, full of badness. He might be a boxing analyst now, but I’d still put a fair whack of moolah on the white flags coming out if his fist was on yer chin.

photo: David Baird

Bella Ramsey

This young Game of Thrones actor is not to be messed with. Bella Ramsey, of Nottingham’s Television Workshop, is sure to embody a few characteristics of Lady Lyanna Mormont (the young head of House Mormont) whose army is small, but powerful. Oh, the metaphorical magic. If you started on her, she’d slap you up with a load of crows and probably set you on fire, so don’t even try it.

photo: David Baird

Richard Whitehead

This Paralympian ain’t just talented when it comes to running towards medals; he’s also trained in gymnastics, swimming, and sledge hockey. Rather you than me, duck. With them multi-faceted muscles, the man could take you out by any means. And I can’t imagine them artificial legs feel too bright when they’re rammed up your backside. Nah. Leave it out. Not worth it.

The Gunn Brothers

The notorious Bestwood Cartel leaders and ‘Godfathers’ of Nottingham gang crime, Colin and David Gunn are not bears to be poked. The Cartel were running large-scale operations in money lending, robbery, drugs, fraud, and the rest, until their eventual arrest. Convicted for corrupting coppers, supplying drugs, and conspiracy to murder between them, I wouldn’t start if I were you duck.

Paul Daley

Another MMA fighter, but this one’s appeared in umpteen leagues and organisations. Former Cage Rage World (and British) Welterweight Champion, the absolutely nails chap runs his own organisation in St. Ann’s called Spirit Dojo, where you can go and train with the best of them. Thai boxing, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and boxing are all available, and you might even bump into the man himsen. Watch out though. And tell your dad to pipe down. There’s no muckin’ about with Semtex.

Brian McGrattan

A renowned fighter on the ice. This Canadian beast has played for a few different teams before, and he’s been in a fair few scraps since he’s been on the Nottingham Panthers. At 6’ 4”, you wouldn’t be booping him on the head with ease, so I doubt you could floor the bogger either. Some of these ice hockey beatings are proper brutal, check the video above for proof.

photo: Hucknall Dispatch

Becky and Ellie Downie

They might be graceful and professional, but a fly kick from one of these two artistic gymnasts would have you KO’d in less than a second. The amount of muscle power it requires to do some of the moves this pair smash, I really wouldn’t ‘ave a go. Even if you think you’re ‘ard enough. Because you’re probably not. And your dad certainly ain’t either.

Brian Clough

No chance. Remember when he punched them pitch invaders back in the day? And if he didn’t wallop you one, he could cut you the F up with his sharp tongue. And yes, he may be six feet under, but bad mouth the bogger and there’ll be a middle finger flinging its way out of the grass, up through the window, slapping you and your dad across the chops.

Anyone you reckon should have made this list? You can gob off in the comments section below…

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