OK, managed to get the black notification/status bar back and working.
Made a complete new one based on the settings in Tigtex's SystemUI.apk and all seems ok.
Steps to install are to download the new one from here SystemUI.apk and put it onto your SD Card.
Run up RootExplorer and browse to /system/app - copy SystemUI.apk to somewhere else on your SD card so you know its safe and you have a backup.
Once you've backed up the original, copy the new SystemUI.apk from your SD card to /system/app - I can pretty much guarantee you'll get constant FC's from SystemUI as soon as it's replaced but you can just about get to the reboot prompt if you hold the power button down and then do some fast clicking to get to the reboot option - failing that press the reset switch next to the battery on the back.
When you boot for the first time after replacement you will have no status bar at all - this is due to the permissions being wrong on the file so we need to fix it.
Run up RootExplorer again and browse to /system/app - long press on SystemUI.apk and select Permissions.
The permissions you need to set is read for all, write for owner and none on execute. To make it easier, make sure the first column is all ticked, the second column just has one tick in the top box and the last column has no ticks.
Don't mess with the Special Permissions part - this isn't needed at all so just click OK.
Reboot again and you should have the standard black status bar back as normal.
Obviously this has worked for me so I make no guarantees it will work for anyone else, but if it doesn't work, you can copy your backup of SystemUI.apk back into /system/app and reset the permissions and you should then be back to normal.
You are a Genius! I now have a black notification bar and solid pull down I can read. Found a simply black background from Zedge and it's looking sharp.
The keyboard is perfect. Uninstalled system Radio with Root Uninstaller as the radio didn't work for me anyway. Advanced task killer set agressive when screen goes off. Hopefully this will help the battery last a bit longer than a day.