JUHS bi-monthly newsletter highlights 5th June 2022


Bi-monthly meetings

At our bi-monthly meeting on Tuesday 24th May, Calvin Payne shared his research into Sheffield’s 18th century railway, which may have been the world’s first with cast iron rails, and potentially included the earliest railway tunnel as well. There is evidence of the infrastructure on the ground, and he is aiming to carry out archaeological investigation in the near future.

It was a truly fascinating talk, and the recording is available on the JUHS YouTube channel.

Here is the link to the meeting minutes.  The meeting was recorded, and you will be able to access the recording for a short time.

For your diary: the next bi-monthly meeting will be on Tuesday 26th July at 4pm in the Portland Works Makerspace. We aim to make this a hybrid meeting so that it can be joined either in person or via Zoom.   Further information will be shared soon.

New Heritage Champion

At the Council meeting on Wednesday 1st June, it was announced that Cllr Janet Ridler will be the Council’s new Heritage Champion, taking over from Cllr Mike Drabble. Janet is well known to many of us in the heritage community, and we are delighted to welcome her into the role. Thanks are also due to Mike, whose hard work and enthusiasm has made it possible to have a real dialogue with the Council. We look forward to building on that to achieve a truly strategic approach to celebrating Sheffield’s rich and diverse heritage, and reaping all its many benefits.

WEA Women’s Land Army project – free introductory course – change of date

The WEA has received a National Lottery Heritage Fund grant of £97,500 for an exciting heritage project, Women on the Land. As a result, the people of South Yorkshire now have the chance to collect, record and enjoy memories of the work and lives of members of the Women’s Land Army (the ‘Land Girls’) and Women’s Timber Corps (or ‘Lumber Jills’) in the area, during and after the second world war, and the impact they had in local community.

A free introductory course of four weekly sessions is starting at The Circle on Friday 24 June, 10:00 – 12:00.

For further information, people can contact the Project Organiser, Richard Godley, at rgodley@wea.org.uk / 07854 646 742.

To book, go to wea.org.uk or phone 0300 303 3464, quoting course ID C3680738.

Workers at Speak & Jackson – the Hawley Collection wants to hear their stories

The Hawley Gallery at Kelham Island is planning an exhibition early next year covering the Spear & Jackson Group, and are looking for people who worked at Moore & Wright, Neill tools and  Spear & Jackson who would be willing to talk about their time there.

Please send any responses to Peter Hawkins either by emailing enquiries@hawleytoolcollection.com or via the website at www.hawleytoolcollection.com.

University of Sheffield Archaeology – temporary reprieve, but the fight goes on

One year after the announcement that its internationally renowned Archaeology department was to be closed, the University of Sheffield have changed their plans. The department will remain open for another two years and the academic staff on permanent contracts will be moved to other departments rather than made redundant.

The intention to close is still in place, and university staff, student unions and the Save Sheffield Archaeology campaign are still fighting against the decision. Read more in this Yorkshire Post article.

Planning Inspector acts to protect heritage in Devonshire Street

A Government Planning Inspector has dismissed an appeal by developer Primesite against the Sheffield City Council Planning Committee’s decision to refuse permission for what are thought to be the city’s earliest purpose-built shops, dating from the 1830s, in the heart of the historic Devonshire Quarter, to be replaced by a modern office block. The developer still has an earlier permission to demolish the shops, previously the home of Rare & Racy, but only if they then proceed to build a replica.

Following on from a similar dismissal of plans to demolish the 18th century Bennett Cottage in the Mayfield Valley, this is another piece of good news for built heritage in Sheffield, and a demonstration that the Planning Committee’s willingness to stand up for heritage brings results.

Welcoming Cultures 2022 is coming to Millennium Gallery

On Sunday 19th June 2022 at 11am-4pm, this family-friendly event will bring in a museum space some of the most under represented communities in Sheffield and together we will celebrate our multicultural city through traditional outfits, music, food, performances and other activities – further details about the programme will be released in the coming months. The event will be open to the public and admission will be free so we’d be grateful if you could share this information with your networks.

New book features the lost, threatened and restored in Sheffield

Mike Higginbottom’s new book Demolished Sheffield will provoke both anger and optimism. In a couple of dozen brief case studies he tells the stories of buildings shamefully lost, such as Norwood Hall, and some, like Leah’s Yard, saved for the future.

You can buy it from Mike’s website.