Cash boost will be good news for our ‘tired’ valley

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Residents on Gleadless Valley probably disagree on many things. But they all agree on one – the estate needs vital cash to finally propel it into the 21st century.

Places for children and teenagers, improving shops and making the area safer are top of the list for many residents.

Built more than 60 years ago, the estate was hailed for its quality and stunning views. But today, shops and houses on the sprawling estate, which reaches the top of Blackstock Road to Newfield Green shops, need a face lift.

The money, awarded to Sheffield Council by the Department for Local Government, will enable the authority to draw up a ‘masterplan’ and accelerate regeneration efforts.

A process will then begin asking residents and community groups what they would like to see further cash spent on, including improving housing stock and local amenities.

There are 2,600 council homes on the Gleadless Valley estate, with some small areas of owner-occupied properties – 38 per cent are houses, 36 per cent flats and 26 per cent maisonettes.

Everyone on Newfield Green shops were pleased the money will help improve the estate – but urged the council to spend it wisely.

Dorothy Powdrill, 73, of Plowright Close, said: “It’s good news for the area, it’s been looking tired for a few years.

“There isn’t much for the kids to do and shops like these on Newfield Green and John O’Gaunt further up Blackstock Road need some money to attract more people.”

Alan Holland, 42, of Plowright Way, said children and young people had to come first.

Gleadless Valley

Gleadless Valley

He said: “I think it’s great news it’s very much needed. We need something for the children, there isn’t anything for them. Something to keep them off the streets and to keep them engaged.

“What that is I’m not so sure, but that has to be the priority for me.”

Michael Hughes, 76, out on Newfield Green shops, said making people feel safe was a top priority.

“I think something needs to be done to make the area feel safer. There’s an unease on here with crime and anti-social behaviour.

“If they can somehow make some of this money available to get that sorted first, then I think the rest can follow afterwards. I hope they spend it wisely and not waste it.”

Rebecca Fish, 24, spent a lot of her childhood on Gleadless Valley but moved from the area towards Manor Top around a year a go.

Safety and sprucing up the shops would be top of her list for regeneration. “I grew up on here and I had a great childhood but I think it’s gone downhill in the last couple of years.

“I don’t feel overly comfortable walking along the shops with my young son without my dad.

“It needs some money throwing at it, I don’t think the shops have changed since before I was a kid.”

One resident, who did not want to be named, said: “It will need a lot more than £500,000 to sort the area out but it’s definitely a start.

“It’s okay saying you need to put something on for the kids but they need to respect and appreciate it. Something like a climbing centre or a youth club fully staffed would work wonders, I think.”

Sally Dale, chair of the Gleadless Valley Tenants’ and Residents’ Association, said: “This is wonderful news for the Gleadless Valley community.

“We look forward to working with the council and local community to develop plans to improve our estate.”

Council bosses will develop a consultation and engagement plan and will shortly start to publicise how people can get involved.

The authority is already considering developing an older person’s supported living scheme at the top end of Gleadless Valley.