Don’t hold your breath for city’s history museum

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I was interested in Colin Drury’s Take Two (July 1) column about the Barnsley museum, which I believe is a wonderful achievement.

You then ask “when is a History of Sheffield museum going to open?” Don’t hold your breath Colin, as I’m afraid Sheffield City Council isn’t much interested in celebrating our history or heritage, or indeed preserving it.

Sheffield did have a Traditional Heritage Museum in the former hall of Endcliffe Methodist Church in Ecclesall Road which was owned by Sheffield University but run by volunteers.

The museum opened in 1985 and provided a record of social history of how trades and shops used to serve their customers and also displayed collections reflecting life and work in Sheffield from 1850 to 1970.

Unfortunately, the museum was closed in February 2011 because the building required a £500,000 of repairs and the university said they “could not afford the significant capital investment needed to maintain it”, a mere drop in the ocean compared to the £36 million they spent on refurbishing the Arts Tower and the £80m they are about to spend on the engineering block on the old Jessop Hospital site.

The closure of the museum has deprived Sheffield of a unique glimpse of its own history.

Susan Richardson