Pub sculpture remembers Great Sheffield Flood

Artist Simon Wrigglesworth-Baker with the sculpture.
Artist Simon Wrigglesworth-Baker with the sculpture.
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A memorial to the Great Sheffield Flood has been installed on the site of a building destroyed in the disaster.

The original Gardener’s Rest pub at Neepsend was one of 700 buildings washed away by a wall of water on March 11, 1864.

Events have been held across the city to remember the tragedy – which killed at least 240 people on the day with more dying afterwards.

Artist Simon Wrigglesworth-Baker, who lives in Neepsend, has created a sculpture and plaque.

He said: “It seems appropriate the sculpture should be placed here on the site of a building destroyed in the 1864 flood, and which is now the garden of the present-day pub – which was also badly damaged in the floods of 2007.”

Pub landlady Pat Wilson added: “It is a beautiful and poignant sculpture and we would like to thank Simon very much.”

Around half the people killed in the flood were children, including a newborn washed out of his mother’s arms in Bradfield.

The dam had just been built to supply drinking water to the fast-growing city of Sheffield. Farmer William Horsfield was the first to spot a crack in the structure but, only hours after he raised the alarm, the dam collapsed, sending 650 million gallons of water crashing down the Loxley Valley.

n Coal Aston Methodist Church will host a lecture on the flood on Friday at 7.30pm. Tickets £3.50 on the door.