Date set for big birthday bash celebrating life of Sheffield philanthropist JG Graves

JG Graves
JG Graves
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The date has been set for a huge birthday party celebrating the legacy of a famous Sheffielder who bestowed so many gifts on the city during his lifetime.

JG Graves may have died in 1945 but his impact on the city he made his home continues to be felt, thanks to contributions ranging from Graves Art Gallery to Ecclesall Woods.

Sheffield is now preparing to say a big thank you to the self-made businessman in the year he would have turned 152, by throwing a birthday bash at another of the gifts he bequeathed to the city - Graves Park.

Preparations for the celebration, which will take place on August 19 and is being organised by Sheffield 50Plus Graves Park Forum, are gathering pace.

Early plans for the bash include an art competition, a tea dance, tennis, cricket and donkey rides, while work is already underway on a banner paying tribute to the great man.

Organisers are keen to get businesses on board, especially those who make a point of giving back to the city as JG Graves so memorably did.

Diana Stimely, who came up with the idea, said: "Though he has been gone from the city for many years, we want to say happy birthday to a man who made such a difference to our city."

She said the Friends of Sheffield Castle group had already agreed to get involved, as had the charity Guide Dogs, and she was keen for the city's universities to play a part too.

JG Graves arrived in the city aged 14 to become an apprentice watchmaker, and he amassed his fortune by building up a mail order empire.

* For more information about the party and how to get involved, you can call Ms Stimely on 0778 6635 895 or attend the next meeting of the Sheffield 50Plus Graves Park Forum at Mount View Methodist Church, on Derbyshire Lane, in Norton Lees, on Wednesday, February 14, from 6.30pm-8pm.