The Star Says: Be proud to care for your environment

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Too often, in our rush to improve and modernise, we ruin some of the most wonderful heritage around us.

In our day-to-day lives we may not realise it is there or what the importance of a building or a piece of street furniture has to its environment.

So it is welcome that there are people who are taking care of it on our behalf.

Today we report on several of our region’s most historic features which are to get protected status.

A lamp that burned gas from Victorian sewers and part of a locomotive factory used to build The Flying Scotsman are among the unusual South Yorkshire heritage.

Government heritage body Historic England has published some of the highlights from the 510 places listed over the past year.

A sewer gas destructor lamp, on Stewart Road, Sharrow Vale, which once burned methane and stagnant gases that built up in urban sewers, is one of seven places in South Yorkshire added to the National Heritage List.

It is amazing to think of the engineering that went into that one lamp.

On a grander scale the erecting shop at the Plant Works in Doncaster is given Grade II status on the list.

It was built in 1890 and 1891 to increase site capacity and accommodate the ever-larger locomotives being built.

Doncaster still has a proud rail heritage and the industry is very much at the forefront of the exciting future the town has.

While we must continue to develop our infrastructure, and be very much an area that is forward-thinking, we can’t afford to throw away our past.

Our heritage is unique to us and we must protect it.

On a related note we must give praise to staff volunteers from five of McDonald’s Sheffield restaurants who helped pick up more than 40 bags of rubbish along Penistone Road.

They said they were moved to action because the amount of litter was unsightly and was having a detrimental effect on the area.

Litter picking should be one of those activities that isn’t needed. However, while ever people are selfish enough to drop or dump it then there will need to be strong support from the authorities and willing volunteers – like those from McDonald’s – to make an area respectable again.

More businesses should encourage their staff to get involved in this kind of community-minded activity.