Don’t object if you don’t make top 10

Claire Starkie with a Old Sheffield Plate Wax Jack
Claire Starkie with a Old Sheffield Plate Wax Jack
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Have your say

It is a project which has led to discussion, debate and several people asking if a reminder of the Hole In The Road could be included.

A new exhibition will attempt to chart the history of Sheffield in just 10 objects.

And tomorrow is the last chance to have your say on what should be included.

Academics behind the project – launched in The Star last year – have spent four months asking city folk to make suggestions.

The public consultation will close tomorrow at a special event at St Mary’s Church in Bramall Lane. The open day, 1-7pm, will also present several aspects of Sheffield history researched by university scholars over the last 12 months.

So far, more than 1,000 people have nominated objects, including steel products, works of art, musical items, archaeological findings and (obviously) a bottle of Henderson’s Relish.

Ignoring the fact it would be difficult to fit into a glass cabinet, dozens of Sheffielders have demanded the Peak District be included. Something relating to the Hole In The Road has been equally popular. Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg suggested a snooker ball (“the yellow”). The Diary’s demand for Weston Park Museum’s sumo wrestlers to be given a spot, meanwhile, has been met without much enthusiasm.

More popular picks have been for items relating to cutlery, sport and markets.

“The response has been phenomenal,” says Doctor Karen Harvey, reader in cultural history at Sheffield University which, along with Sheffield Visual Arts group and Museums Sheffield, is behind the project.

The exhibition itself – inspired by Radio Four’s History Of The World In 100 Objects – will run at Weston Park Museum from May 10.

Before that, volunteers will have a roundtable discussion to decide on the final 10.

Although the public’s nominations will be considered, the most popular suggestions will not necessarily make the cut. Other deciding factors will include expert recommendations and the availability of objects.

“So we’ve had a nomination for Sheffield Cathedral which is a great idea,” says Dr Harvey. “But it wouldn’t be easy getting it to Weston Park Museum.”

A report of the top 10 public suggestions will be made, though. And it is hoped it will all lead to a larger exhibition in 2016 featuring 100 of the city’s most important artefacts. Maybe those sumo wrestlers will be included.