Sheffield General Cemetery gatehouse up for rent in history lover's dream

Trustee Janet Ridler said the gatehouse rental was a history buff's dream
Trustee Janet Ridler said the gatehouse rental was a history buff's dream
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History buffs have an opportunity to live in a unique Sheffield building, and whoever moves in won't have a problem with a noisy neighbourhood.

The gatehouse at the Sheffield General Cemetery, a Grade II* listed property, is up for rent.

For £495 a month, plus bills, you will have a remarkable piece of history at your doorstep on Cemetery Avenue, Sharrow..

You will also be able to count some famous names as your neighbours.

The Sheffield General Cemetery Trust rents out the building to help fund its activities.

Trustee Janet Ridler said the one-bedroom property had already attracted significant interest on social media.

The gatehouse, constructed on an arch over Porter Brook, was built in 1836.

"It's the classic illusion to the River Styx from Greek mythology," Mrs Ridler said.

The Greeks believed that a river forms the boundary between earth and the underworld.

The gatehouse was designed by Sheffield architect Samuel Worth, who also lent his vision to the non-conformist chapel in the cemetery grounds.

"It's the original entrance to the cemetery," Mrs Ridler, a Leyfield Road, Dore resident, said.

"The horses, with their black plumes, would have come through and wound their way up the hill."

The gatehouse originally housed the cemetery sexton and gravedigger on opposite sides of its arch.

Today, the trust's office sits on the other side.

Mrs Ridler said the cosy home would suit one or two people.

"Anybody who's interested in Victorian, gothic sorts of things," she said.

"On your doorstep is a listed cemetery site."

The grounds are steeped in history, with 87,000 people buried in the cemetery.

Among those resting there is Mark Firth, who lent his name to many Sheffield locations.

Born in 1819, the successful steel manufacturer, lord mayor and master cutler presented the city with 36 acres of land which is now Firth Park.

Mark, who died in 1880, established Firth College, which later became the University of Sheffield.

Radical reformer Samuel Holberry, who sought to bring voting rights to the masses, is buried in the cemetery.

Samuel, who died in York Castle prison aged just 27, was the leader of the Chartist movement in Sheffield.

After peaceful beginnings, his group had a radical plan to take over the Old Town Hall on Waingate.

The group was infiltrated, and Samuel was sentenced to four years in prison. He never got out.

While there are plenty more interesting stories to discover in the cemetery grounds, Mrs Ridler said the future of the complex is exciting, too.

It continues the concept of the garden cemetery being a place for the living.

"The cemetery is undergoing a re-birth," Mrs Ridler said.

The chapel can now add music venue to its long history.

It was brilliantly illuminated for Lush Spectra in June, a two-day event which was part of the Sheffield Makes Music event.

Mrs Ridler said it was 'absolutely stunning'.