Living the Park Hill vision in Sheffield

Have your say

Sales were sluggish when the first new flats went on sale at Park Hill - but it seems that, five years on, enthusiasm for living on the revamped estate is spreading.

The first phase of the regeneration created 260 apartments, 10 of which are now still left to sell, and 10 to rent. There are also only two units left for businesses, out of an initial 10.

And there’s more to come - earlier this year London firm Mikhail Riches was hired to design the second phase, providing another 200 homes and a further 30,000 sq ft of business space.

The S1 Artspace group is moving into the Duke Street wing, where it aims to set up one of the largest galleries dedicated to contemporary art in the North.

The space would house an archive, auditorium, studios, ‘live or work’ flats, production workshops and an education space, with plans for a sculpture park outside. Funding worth £1 million has been pledged by the Government towards the scheme - however, the total sum needed is likely to be many millions more.

Discussions to open a café bar at Park Hill are at an advanced stage, too. There is strong interest, and the desire for a venue at Europe’s largest listed building exists among developer Urban Splash, residents, businesses and in the city more widely.

And tomorrow (Friday) the Grace Owen nursery school - one of the last remaining council-run nurseries in Sheffield - will be officially reopened in a new, purpose-built location.

The nursery has been running at Park Hill since the complex was built in the Brutalist style of architecture in 1961.

Two of the newest residents are Lizzie Ellen, aged 28, and her fiancée Joshua Hales, 26, acting director of music at Sheffield Cathedral. They rented a one-bedroom flat at Park Hill to start with, and bought a two-bedroom property for £145,000 in January.

Lizzie: “We have seen many changes here and enjoyed the events put on, particularly the Peddler street food market and the Christmas 2015 party which was a really fun event.”

Joshua added: “I am sure many who doubted there was a future for Park Hill will have changed their minds, or will if they see the changes that have been made.”

Guy Ackernley, Urban Splash’s residential director, said: “The way the remaining flats in phase one are selling proves that they are in demand and that people want to live here.”