Thursday 30 May 2013

Stainless Steel City

And so we crossed the road and ended up in Victoria Quays by the canal - an area of the city that is  very under used and could be so fabulous.

 The buildings have been restored and some used for flats whilst others are used as offices.  There is also a hotel but the bars and canal side in general are never busy.

 We decided to eat at the cafe to help support the cause.  It was lovely and sunny and it really is a nice place to sit.  I understand that once the market is demolished, the council plan to improve access to the Quays to try and make it more popular - I hope it does.

 Hubby noticed the massive Carp swimming about - they are absolutely enormous and there are hundreds of them! One lady who lived on a barge said that they must be able to read as they hung about near the "no fishing " sign.

 We then walked into Sheffield over Park Square, where the tram runs.
 People of a certain age may remember the "Hole in the Road" that was demolished to make way for the tram.  I used to love the Hole in the Road (or "oil int ruuard") but it got very run down and uncared for and ended up a bit of a no go area.  It's a huge shame as it was iconic and very unique.
 I was headed in the direction of the Howard Pub near the railway station as the street artist Faunagraphic has just finished her most recent piece.
 This is Harry Brearley who invented Stainless Steel.  I think its really good.  I love the way we have several of these pieces of street art dotted around now - they really brighten the city up.

 And I was delighted to discover that the butter spreader I found when we cleared out my father in laws house seems to be a Brearley Stainless piece.  My little piece of Sheffield treasure.

Wednesday 29 May 2013

The Upper Don Walk

Staying close to home again, on Monday we decided to partake of a city walk, in contrast to our Wentworth Countryside Walk.  Sheffield council may have many faults (and they do have many!) but one of their better decisions is to plant urban spaces with wild flowers.  These inner city meadows are gorgeous.  I love them.

 We parked at Kelham Island and walked down the Upper Don Walk.
 We caught these two gossiping.
 Across the river stands an old mill - I believe this used to be a Corn Mill but is now office spaces.
 If you look closer at the old works pub on the corner, you can see that the windows are a bit lopsided.  The pub was badly damaged (and badly repaired!) after the big flood in 1864 which was caused by a Dam further up river breaching its wall.

 Over 230 people died in the flood, and the flood monument stands by the side of the river in an area known as Millsands.
 I thought it was sad to read that the 2 servants (Man 17, Girl 18) were unnamed.
 At one time, this area of Sheffield would have had the Castle towering above it.  Only the footings are left of the castle, but they are going to be opened up to the public once the market (which is built above it) gets pulled down.  The street that runs by the river is called "Nursery Street" and was the garden nursery for one of the Dukes (of Leicester I believe) that lived in the castle at that time.  Nursery Street runs into Mowbray Street runs off Nursery Street - so I think the Leicester connection is correct.  Lady's Bridge is the oldest bridge across the river Don in the city.

 The old Brewery (I think this used to be Whitbreads) sits on the river here.  It is also now converted to offices (as we don't seem to make much in  the UK anymore!!).  I used to hate this part of Sheffield when I was little as I couldn't stand the smell of the hops brewing - I thought that they stunk of school dinner carrots!!

 The Lady's bridge was almost destroyed in the big flood, and it was out of action for a year after the floods in 2007 too! I think the problem is that just up river, the Don runs through very rural areas and woods, and big tree's get washed down here.
 You can see the bones of one of the older bridges below the new one.
 This in the confluence of the Sheaf (on the right) and the Don.  Hubby and the young man are convinced that they saw an Otter earlier in the week near here.
I'll show you where we went next late.

Tuesday 28 May 2013

Bank Holiday Weekend

We stayed mainly around home this bank holiday weekend.  Hubby had to work Saturday night and so a quick walk around the outskirts of Elsecar and Wentworth had to suffice.

 The views from up here are outstanding - the sun and blue sky made it all look so beautiful.

 This is the first crop in the fields that we have noted is actually growing.  The poor farmers are having a rough time of it around here lately.  It was a gorgeous shade of green.

Monday 27 May 2013

Perfect Venue

Last night, hubby and I took a very scenic drive across to Castleton to watch our favourite local band The Everly Pregnant Brothers.

They were playing in a cave locally known as The Devils *rse.
I have to say that it was a perfect venue and a truly amazing place to listen to the band.

We laughed and sung and danced and enjoyed every minute.
I love a venue with a touch of drama!

And if you want to hear one of their latest songs with a fantastic new video - CLICK HERE

Saturday 25 May 2013


Another highlight of the Tena Lady Tour was our Sunday visit to Saltaire in West Yorkshire.  I really love Saltaire - have you ever been?  

 Our coach company had organised us a tour by a local lady who dressed and acted as a mill worker - she was very good.  She told us all about the mill and village and brought the history to life.
 Saltaire was the vision of Sir Titus Salt who made a fortune spinning Alpaca wool.  He built his mill and housing for the workers out in the countryside - not in the squalid city centre's as other mill owners did.  He also took control and care of the recreation and health of his workers so that they produced more! He built the village with many churches, shops, a civic centre, school, a hospital etc - but no pubs!
 He was a well travelled man and the Italian influence in this church was stunning.

 A tour of the village highlighted the difference in the houses and you were allocated a type of house depending on your status and job.
 Most of the houses remain and are still lived in.  The site has gained Unesco World Heritage status.

 It must have been an amazing place for the workers to live in.  Whilst the work in the mills was still dangerous and unhealthy, the houses and village must have been so much better than their counterparts in the big towns and cities.

 The star of the show though is the huge mill - situated on the banks of the river Aire.

 Some of the mill is used for recreational purpose now with a few lovely shops, cafes and galleries.  One of my favourite parts features the work of David Hockney and amazingly they let me take photographs.  I love the 25 Trees - it is a wonderful piece of modern day art, and the scale of the work suits the building very well.
 We were a bit short of time, I really need to go back to Saltaire again - so much to see and do.

 According to our guide, the 4 Lions in the civic area were originally built for Trafalgar Square, but were too small.  I thought you might like to see our favourite lion - licking his paw.
It won't be long before I go back to Saltaire.