Tuesday 6 April 2010

Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet

A great place to spend an hour in Sheffield is Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet - one of the many museums dedicated to the city's industrial past. Sadly, this perfect little gem is very under funded and could be utterly brilliant, but even so, it does have a lot going for it.

It sits on the river Sheaf (from where the city gets its name).
The river feeds the mill pond. You can see that it sits in a beautiful wooded valley.

The old buildings date back to the early 1700's and they used to make crucible steel here, and then turn it into scythes.

I like the old offices, I remember my gran cleaning offices that looked very similar to this in the early 1960's!!!

There are a couple of houses. One is fairly austere but has great rag rugs and patchwork quilts. There were 8 of us looking around the house at the same time and you couldn't move. We commented that families often consisted of around 8 children and would feel overcrowded all of the time - but they always managed to fit a piano and a Grandfather clock in.

The other house is a little more grand and has slightly more room.

We couldn't imagine what bathtime for the whole family would have been like - its bad enough these days!!

And of course, it had a "privvy" (the young man could not get his head around the thought of an outside toilet!). My friend who was with me told us that her first marital home had an outside loo - they shared it with a neighbour! She commented that like the one at the hamlet, theirs also had a magnificent patch of Rhubarb just outside the door!! (just out of the picture).

Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet is small, but perfectly formed and free to visit. It is also in a lovely area of Sheffield where there is lots more to see and do.


Anonymous said...

Aw - we used to love visiting Abbeydale, when we lived in Nether Edge. 12 years since I moved away, I still really, really miss Sheffield! I love all that industrial heritage - the mill races and mill ponds. Happy memories.

Rebecca said...

Another interesting place, thanks for sharing x

Rosie said...

Another place on my list of places to visit! It reminds me of the 'back-to-backs' in Birmingham. I remember when I was a small child we had an outside loo for quite a while until we were 'modernised'! :)

Twiggy said...

Ooo never been here, another one to add to the list!
Twiggy x

andamento said...

You certainly seem to find lots of interesting places to visit near you. The houses look very interesting. It's fantastic that it's free too.

Kathy said...

My Nana lived in a little house like that first one - with no hot water, no bath and an outside loo.
I can remember it vividly.... and yes, she had a piano but sadly not a grandfather clock.
I can't imagine how hard life must have been!
Thanks for sharing your photos!
Love Kathy xxx

WinnibriggsHouse said...

It's great to hear of new places to go. Will have to keep a record of all the places everyone recommends for future reference. :)

Christy said...

As always, your photos are just wonderful. I always feel like I've taken a mini vacation after visiting your blog. Thanks! :)

menopausalmusing said...

I think it does us good to see the conditions our parents/grandparents lived in. :O)

Michela said...

My mum had an outside toilet too during her childhood (her house was very old..not her! ;-)
Lovely tour, thank you!!!

Lisa said...

My dad used to talk about the outside loo when he was little!
Love the patchwork.
Another great place to spend a day out.
Lisa x

Rowan said...

This is one place I have visited, it's about 5 minutes drive from my house. It's sad that such a wonderful piece of our industrial heritage is so under-funded. It's such an interesting place.

The Girl said...

I love those kind of real life living museums where you can in things and have a good look about, way more interesting than just looking at things behind glass.

Jude said...

I find these living museums so interestig..thank you.
Take care

Anonymous said...

Love the pottery room! Oh, I'd love to visit this museum!

Zannah said...

How embarrasing - I keep meaning to go here as it's about 15 minutes walk from my house - but still haven't got round to it - it'll definitely be on my list of 'places to go to' now!!

Ellouise88 said...

what an interesting and lovely place. beautiful photos as usual.

Bumble Bee Cottage said...

Hi Diane,

Free historical sites are always such a bonus, especially when there are five of you

I love the rag rug in one of the photos.

Thanks for the tour,