Visit Sheffield and the surrounding villages and stay in bed & breakfast accommodation:
Sheffield, South Yorkshire. The steel capital of Britain has the best of two worlds. It is a thriving industrial centre but it is not stifled by its factories. It holds a happy situation on three hills at the meeting of two rivers, the Don and Sheaf. The Pennines, castles, priories and abbeys are only a short distance away. Civic planning by a forward-looking authority, smokeless zoning, and outstanding modern architecture have improved appearances in recent years. Sheffield was famous for cutlery as early as the 14th century (there is a famous reference in Chaucer's Canterbury Tales) and it began to specialize in such tools with the arrival of Flemish immigrants in the 16th century. Steel products followed the invention of the crucible process by Benjamin Huntsman in 1740. At about the same time Thomas Boulsover found out how to fuse silver to copper ingots and roll the silver plate by which Sheffield is known the world over.
It was not always such a stimulating place to visit, but damage suffered in the Second World War forced rebuilding of the grimy centre, and under the guidance of City Architects J. L. Womersley and L. L. Clunie, buildings worthy of their sites began to rise. There is little building older than Victorian left, except for part of the cathedral and a handful of houses. The Town Hall, opened in 1897, towers over the city centre with a statue of Vulcan, appropriately, on the very top. The Cutlers' Hall of 1832 stands nearby. The Master Cutler is second only to the Lord Mayor in Sheffield. The hall contains a fine collection of silver from 1773 to the present. The city's major social event, the Cutlers' Feast, is held annually in the banqueting hall, a 350-year-old tradition.
The City Museum near the University in Weston Park has an unmatched collection of cutlery from the 16th century and the world's largest array of Sheffield plate. The University of Sheffield, chartered in 1905, specializes in applied sciences. It has a red-brick core and some striking new buildings, including a library rated the best 20th-century building in town. A low, square structure with bands of glass and stone, it is connected by a bridge to the 19-story glass Arts Tower.
Sheffield has been daring in its treatment of both shopping and housing. The Castle Market, on the site of vanished Sheffield Castle, opened in 1959 as a roofed shopping centre. There is street access from three floors because of the hilly terrain. Multiple stores and shops are connected to the market by covered galleries.
The Cathedral Church of SS. Peter and Paul, across from Cutlers' Hall in Church Street, dates from about 1435, and is Perpendicular in style with a crocketed spire. The building has been extensively altered and enlarged with, among other changes, a new glass and steel entrance, modern tower and lantern. Visitors will want to look at the Shrewsbury Chapel monuments and the stained-glass windows by Christopher Webb relating local history, and to linger over his Chaucer window in the chapter house.
There are two art galleries, the Graves on the top floor of the Central Library with a fine collection of Chinese ivories, and the Mappin Art Gallery in Weston Park, featuring English art. Persons interested in industrial antiquities should contact the Sheffield Industrial Museums Trust for permission to visit the Shepherd Wheel in Whiteley Woods, the only known working water-powered grinding wheel and, at the new Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet, a scythe-works of the 18th and 19th centuries.
Sheffield relishes its reputation as a city without rigid class barriers, of friendly and city-proud residents.
A round walk of 10 miles will take visitors around the town on public parks property through shady suburbs, woods and fields. The Civic Information Service in the Central Library can provide details. The walk passes Beauchief Abbey, founded in 1175, of which only the west tower stands. The Church of St Thomas in this former village was built with abbey stones in the 17th century and has fine contemporary furnishings, including box pews. The walk also leads through Graves Park from which there is an overall view of this surprising city.
Nearby towns: Barnsley, Chesterfield, Rotherham, Worksop
Nearby villages: Aldwark, Aston, Attercliffe, Barlborough, Brightside, Canklow, Carbrook, Darnall, Deepcar, Dore, Dronfield, Ecclesall, Ecclesfield, Eckington, Frecheville, Froggatt, Greasbrough, Grenoside, Grimesthorpe, Grindleford, Harley, Heeley, High Hazels, Holmesfield, Killamarsh, Kilnhurst, Kimberworth, Longley, Loxley, Mosborough, Neepsend, Nether Edge, Orgreave, Oughtibridge, Rawmarsh, Sheffield, Stannington, Stocksbridge, Swallownest, Swinton, Templeborough, Thrybergh, Tinsley, Totley, Treeton, Ughill, Ulley, Unstone, Wadsley, Walkley, Wharncliffe Side, Wincobank, Woodhouse Mill, Woodseats, Wortley
Have you decided to visit Sheffield or the surrounding villages? Please look above for somewhere to stay in:
- a Sheffield bed and breakfast (a Sheffield B&B or Sheffield b and b)
- a Sheffield guesthouse
- a Sheffield hotel (or motel)
- a Sheffield self-catering establishment, or
- other Sheffield accommodation