When I went on a Sheffield Open Day guided tour led by a full time employee of the council I was shocked to find that he felt that Sheffield has sufficient sites of industrial archaeology to ignore the Loxley ‘problem’.
His view was that the Kelham Industrial Museum, Abbeydale Works, Bishop’s House and Shepherd Wheel had sufficient capital spent on them and so this justified the neglect of the Loxley Valley.
In addition to the matters that Ron has highlighted there is still the neglected eyesore of the Bovis site which is adjacent to the long standing disgrace of the Hepworth and Marshall’s Refactory Works and former clay mine.
This of course is just outside the Peak Park boundary and does nothing to enhance our ‘outdoor city.’
Yorkshire Water Treatment Plant is to a degree a tidy well-kept site with its service reservoir.
The cause of all these problems is - as the leader of our walk explained - money, or lack of it.
Although vandals are probably responsible for the arson of the Loxley Chapel, darker motives involving housing development have been rumoured.
But the Chapel is consecrated ground with graves inside as well as the adjacent cemetery which is still in use.
Development is creeping up the Valley from Malin Bridge to Dam Flask through Little Matlock, Olive Wheel and new tasteful-ish housing at Black Lane and Rowel Bridge.
Will this be the destiny of the Loxley Valley with ever spreading suburbanisation?
At least the Rivelin Valley and Stannington seem to be protected areas, don’t they?
Ironically in the very same edition of the Star the problem of creeping graffiti was addressed as well as the attractions of Endcliffe Park, the Porter Valley and the praise of Lord Kerslake for our ‘outdoor city.’
David I Gill
Hawthorn Rd, Hillsborough, Sheffield, S6