‘Unique history’ saves buildings at hospital

Chesterman House at the Northern General Hospital
Chesterman House at the Northern General Hospital
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Further buildings earmarked for demolition on the Northern General Hospital site have been awarded listed status.

Chesterman House and Wycliffe House - part of a former children’s home built in 1894 - have been listed at Grade II by Historic England, together with a set of outbuildings and boundary walls.

Earlier this year Norwood Grange - a cottage, barn, stables and coach house on the hospital estate in Fir Vale - was also awarded the same status.

The buildings were put forward by the Hallamshire Historic Buildings Society, after Sheffield Teaching Hospitals proposed knocking them down to save £350,000 from its budget.

Hospital bosses say the buildings cannot be used for clinical care and cost a large amount of money even to keep empty. Special consent would now be needed to knock down or alter the buildings.

Setting out the reasons behind its decision, Historic England said Chesterman House and Wycliffe House were the headquarters of the country’s first ‘scattered homes’ system - where pauper children were sent to live in ordinary houses, rather than cottage homes or workhouses.

The organisation said the buildings ‘have a unique place in the history and development of social welfare in England’.

Howard Greaves, from the Hallamshire society, said he was ‘delighted’, but called for the hospital trust not to demolish a water tower and stable block which were rejected for listing.

“Both are of merit and important pieces of Sheffield’s heritage which should be preserved for future generations,” he said.