Student designs show huge potential of Sheffield's Castlegate

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New images designed by Sheffield students show the potential a regenerated Castlegate could hold.

Bars and restaurants, open space and even a community garden are among the ideas put forward by the University's school of architecture as part of a project designed to show what could be achieved with the old Castle Market site.

Sheffield Council this week announced a pot of almost £800,000 for several projects in the area, including an archaeological dig. And members of the Castlegate Partnership - including the council, the city's two universities, heritage groups and businesses - took to the roof of Wilko yesterday to explain their vision.

Coun Ian Saunders, the council's heritage champion, said uncovering the lost ruins of Sheffield Castle was important.

"This is where Sheffield began, something like 1,000 years ago or more," he said.

"This is where the village started and grew into a town, and then the city we know today.

A design by University of Sheffield students showing the potential of Castlegate.

A design by University of Sheffield students showing the potential of Castlegate.

"We want to see a comprehensive redevelopment of the site but it very much has to take into account the heritage of the site.

"And that's why we want to open up the Sheaf - make a pocket park, somewhere nice to sit at lunchtime and have a coffee, and then develop whatever comes out of it."

The University of Sheffield has been involved in the castle site for some time prior to the recent architecture project.

John Moreland, professor of medieval archaeology, said his department was carrying out the first study of finds from excavations done there in the 1920s and 1950s.

Prof John Moreland and Martin Gorman of the Friends of Sheffield Castle view the site.

Prof John Moreland and Martin Gorman of the Friends of Sheffield Castle view the site.

"What we hope to do from those studies is write a new history of Sheffield Castle," he added.

Prof Moreland previously chaired the Friends of Sheffield Castle and still sits on the group, which is trying to lobby for funds which he says are 'key' to unlocking the site.

He added: "One of the things about this site is that the archaeology of the castle is very important for understanding Sheffield but its also very important for the commercial development of this area, because until the archaeology is done and until we understand the archaeology, it's actually very difficult for this area to be developed.

"What we think is that we can make the heritage of this castle actually enhance and contribute to the development of the area."

Ideas for regeneration.

Ideas for regeneration.

The partnership also includes businesses and art organisations in the area, such as non-profit Delicious Clam Records, which is based in Exchange Street. The studio hosted live music during Tramlines this year.

Joseph Armstrong said: "We got kicked out of our last place due to people wanting to build flats, and now we have found a space where we can comfortably put on shows for everyone in the community.

"Castle Market got knocked down and that was a big part of the history of this city, and its cool something new and exciting is being put into the area."

The site is vacant after Castle Market was demolished.

The site is vacant after Castle Market was demolished.