RETRO: Sheffield city centre changing times and shopping trends

A view of the Goodwin Fountain and flower beds at the top of Fargate, taken from Sheffield Town Hall - 10th August 1967''H.L. Brown'Cantors''Sheffield
A view of the Goodwin Fountain and flower beds at the top of Fargate, taken from Sheffield Town Hall - 10th August 1967''H.L. Brown'Cantors''Sheffield
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These great photographs from The Star’s collection show just how much Sheffield city centre shopping areas have changed over the years.

Whether you believe the changes have been for the better or not, there’s certainly been plenty of them, and more to come.

Barker's Pool, Sheffield'Flower beds in front of the Gaumont Cinema - 1960s

Barker's Pool, Sheffield'Flower beds in front of the Gaumont Cinema - 1960s

John Lewis, or Cole Brothers as most Sheffielders still call it, has had stores in Sheffield for 169 years, so its history is completely interwoven with the city.

A blue plaque marks the site of the old Coles Corner, immortalised by Sheffield musicianRichard Hawley in his 2005 album of the same name.

It was a popular meeting point for couples and for nervous first dates, apparently because there were doors opening on to two roads, so anyone who changed their mind could disappear off unnoticed!

The firm that opened on Fargate in 1847 moved to Barkers Pool in July 1963 and is currently waiting to flit again to Charter Square.

Cole Brothers Limited, Department Store, Fargate, Sheffield Coles Corner April 1964

Cole Brothers Limited, Department Store, Fargate, Sheffield Coles Corner April 1964

Fitzalan Square features in some of the photographs.

It was home to the city’s main market area until the 1930s but in recent years the area has become more and more run down and very sad-looking.

Recently Castle Market nearby was demolished as well.

The lovely main post office has been closed up for 17 years now.

Change Alley, Sheffield in 1965'Electricity showroom on the left''Sheffield

Change Alley, Sheffield in 1965'Electricity showroom on the left''Sheffield

Many readers will remember the area as a once thriving part of the city centre, with shops, banks and cinemas.

The post office building opened in 1910, operating as Sheffield’s head post office until 1999, when it moved into more modern premises in the Co-op store in Angel Street, another much-missed store.

Since then the building has fallen into disrepair, but Hallam University has taken it over and aims to sympathetically refurbish it as as the new home for the Sheffield Institute of Art, which can trace its own history back to 1843.

Plans for the interior will provide teaching rooms and practice studios, as well as an exhibition and event space.

Picture shows Fitzalan Square, Sheffield, including the Cartoon Cinema and C & A''Undated.

Picture shows Fitzalan Square, Sheffield, including the Cartoon Cinema and C & A''Undated.

The fashion brand Topshop started life in 1964 as a clothing line designed to appeal to teenagers in the Peter Robinson’s store in Sheffield, now occupied by Primark on High Street/Angel Street.

Shoppers could browse their windows in one of the underpasses that led to the Hole in the Road.

By 1970 it became a stand-alone brand that’s still going strong now, unlike Peter Robinson’s, which had disappeared by the end of that decade.

Cockayne’s opened as a draper’s in 1829, run by brothers Thomas Bagshawe Cockayne and William Cockayne, at 1 Angel Street.

By 1899 that had expanded into a department store with its own cabinet-making factory.

The store was also destroyed in the Sheffield Blitz, reopening the first phase of a new shop in 1949.

'Blooming Sheffield' in 1962 - Picture shows the junction of High Street and Angel Street taken from the end of Change Alley.'Peter Robinson's on the right and Cockayne's Department Store to the left.''Sheffield

'Blooming Sheffield' in 1962 - Picture shows the junction of High Street and Angel Street taken from the end of Change Alley.'Peter Robinson's on the right and Cockayne's Department Store to the left.''Sheffield

The final phase of rebuilding was completed in 1955.

In 1972 the company was taken over by Schofields (Leeds) Ltd and the name changed to Schofields. It closed in November 1982 and is now an Argos.

Cantor’s ‘six-star’ furniture store can be seen behind the Goodwin Fountain that once dominated the top of Fargate.

The Cantor family began trading in 1920 and their furniture division opened its first store in Sheffield in 1927. At its height, the firm operated more than 100 stores.

The family name lives on in the Cantor Building of Hallam University, to carry on the late Harold Cantor’s interest in high-class design.

Junction of High Street and Angel Street, Sheffield - just before the Hole in the Road was built - 8th April 1965

Junction of High Street and Angel Street, Sheffield - just before the Hole in the Road was built - 8th April 1965

Change Alley in 1886 - it ran from High Street to Norfolk Street, Sheffield, and disappeared in the redevelopments which created Arundel Gate ''Charles Dickens stayed at the Kings Head Hotel in Change Alley in 1858.

Change Alley in 1886 - it ran from High Street to Norfolk Street, Sheffield, and disappeared in the redevelopments which created Arundel Gate ''Charles Dickens stayed at the Kings Head Hotel in Change Alley in 1858.

Barker's Pool, Sheffield'Picture shows Barker's Pool with the new Cole Brothers Store  and the Gaumont Cinema on the left - taken from the Goodwin Fountain outside Sheffield Town Hall - 18th August 1964.''The old Cinema House demolished to make way for new shops and offices''Sheffield

Barker's Pool, Sheffield'Picture shows Barker's Pool with the new Cole Brothers Store and the Gaumont Cinema on the left - taken from the Goodwin Fountain outside Sheffield Town Hall - 18th August 1964.''The old Cinema House demolished to make way for new shops and offices''Sheffield