Sheffield's Park Hill flats join Windsor Castle and Blenheim Palace in list of country's top 10 historic places

Sheffield's Park Hill flats have been named in a list of the country's 10 most historic places, alongside buildings such as Windsor Castle and Blenheim Palace.
Sheffield's Park Hill flats have been named in a list of the country's 10 most historic places, alongside buildings such as Windsor Castle and Blenheim Palace.
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Sheffield's Park Hill flats have been named in a list of the country's 10 most historic places, alongside buildings such as Windsor Castle and Blenheim Palace.

The brutalist flat-block, which first divided opinion 20 years ago when it was given Grade II-listed status, has now been singled out as part of a Historic England campaign celebrating the country’s heritage.

It was picked by architect and TV presenter George Clarke to represent the impact of post-war social housing. Built between 1957 and 1961, the ‘streets in the sky’ development was part of a project to clear the squalor of inner-city slums.

But in the following decades, its four high-rise blocks, which contain 995 flats, fell into disrepair.

While many similar developments were torn down, Park Hill was controversially given Grade II status by Historic England in 1998. At the time critics said it was an eyesore and called for the dilapidated flats to be demolished. Instead, they were bought by developers Urban Splash, whose regeneration project was nominated for the architecture award the RIBA Stirling Prize in 2013.

Part of the site is also now set to be turned into a ‘national flagship’ arts venue by the designers of London’s V&A museum.

England's top ten historic places, according to Historic England, are

- Park Hill flats, Sheffield

- Windsor Castle, Berkshire

- Birkenhead Park, Merseyside

- Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire

- Almshouses at Hospital of St Cross, Winchester

- Post-war prefab bungalows, Birmingham

- Port Sunlight, Wirral, Merseyside

- Great Somerford Free Gardens, Wiltshire

- RHS Garden WisleyWoking, Surrey

- Osborne HouseIsle of Wight