Jim Taylor: One of Nottingham’s Modern Day Influencers
21st February 2017
ISSUE 1 – JIM “el Presidente” TAYLOR
Jim Taylor played a leading role in the majority of initiatives that not only prevented Nottingham from succumbing to economic decline but helped transform it to a city fit for the 21st Century.
Some of his achievements included providing our city with a modern tram service; he was pivotal in promoting the revitalisation of the Lace Market part of the city centre and masterminding the transformation of the Old Market Square in his role as the City Council’s Director of Development. He was a key part of the team that brought the Inland Revenue to Nottingham creating 2,000 jobs
The first tram line came about after Jim contacted the city planners of Karlsruhe, where a similar plan had met with great success. A true man of the people Jim, and his equivalent from the German city, walked Nottingham’s streets together, discussing the most suitable route and the best methods of handling the inevitable objections.
The first 14 km phase of Nottingham Express Transit (NET) opened to the public in March 2004 costing some £200m and the second phase opened in August 2015 more than doubling the size of the total system taking it to a total of some 32 km. The tram fleet is named after famous local people and fittingly one is named in his honour.
After poor health forced him to retire at the age of 49, he continued to work for the public good founding the successful Invest in Nottingham Club, which made contacts among firms at home and abroad in order to encourage economic growth through inward investment.
An avid Forest fan, he organised the “family pew” at Nottingham Forest’s home games, he also founded the renowned Sneinton Academy of Health and Beauty, which started in 1984 as a simple keep-fit class but blossomed to incorporate a variety of recreational activities. Its membership extending in an almost Masonic like way through Nottingham’s professional circles and celebrated its silver jubilee with a black-tie dinner with over 200 people in attendance.
Sadly Jim “el presidente” Taylor passed away in 2014 but his influence and legacy lives on in everything around us in Nottingham. He is survived by his wife, Sue, his sons, Dan, Joe and Adam, his grandsons, Harry and Jack, and his brother, George.