Sheffield’s Sharrowvale Road in High Street of Year bid

Florist Maria Proctors business is in Sharrow Vale Road, which has been nominated for the High Street of the Year competition

Florist Maria Proctors business is in Sharrow Vale Road, which has been nominated for the High Street of the Year competition

  • by Ellen Beardmore

It’s been dubbed the Notting Hill of Sheffield and is home to dozens of quirky businesses.

Now the butchers, bakers, restaurants and homeware shops of Sharrowvale Road hope it could be crowned the high street of the year.

The popular road, which has been transformed into a thriving area and is also the location of artist Pete McKee’s gallery A Month of Sundays, is going head-to-head with others across the country for the prestigious title and a £50,000 prize.

Mum Maria Proctor, who owns The Brookhouse Florist which has been open for four years, was one of the traders involved in putting in the bid after a meeting.

“We get people coming here from all over, just from word of mouth,” she said.

“A lot of people liken it to Notting Hill, especially when the street market is on. I do think it is the best road in Sheffield.

“It is a meandering little street, there are no chains, and people love to come and have a little walk around.”

As well as the road’s fiercely independent streak, business owners praised it for having a diversity of shops - from a fishmonger to a framer’s, a pub to a post office.

Fran Mcnamara, who works at the Sharrow Vale Hardware shop, well known for cat George who sits on the counter, said: “It has everything you need and there is a lot more personality than there is on other high streets.

“We are famous for having the cat but there are a few other shops with them as well.”

Over the past two years it is thought 14 new shops have opened, bringing the total number of businesses to around 50. The newest addition to the road is Evermore, a traditional sweet shop already proving popular.

Russ Peckett, whose wife Janet runs the store while he runs The Porter Brook pub nearby on Ecclesall Road, said traders also worked together as a team.

He added: “I think it is really cosmopolitan – it has such a lovely independent, friendly feel to it.

“Why high street of the year? Why not?

“We love the area and the people, so this was the only place we wanted to open a shop because the people are great.

One of the older shops is Petal Accessories, which has been running in its current location for 12 years and in the area for 18.

It is owned by Carol Wood, who was involved in submitting the bid along with Sharrow Vale Community Association.

Worker Sue Cusworth, who pointed out that the rear of most shops still have outside toilets and historic features, said: “There is great diversity here. You can go into places like Bullet and it is full of all sorts of nick-nacks.

“I think it is nicer than Ecclesall Road - that is just coffee bars, charity shops and phone shops now.”

The deadline for areas to submit their entries is today, and winners will be announced in the autumn.

Sharrowvale Road is hoping to win the ‘parade of shops’ category from organiser The Great British High Street.




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