Volunteers wanted to clean up Sheffield's 'unloved backwater'

Sheffield Old Town Hall
Sheffield Old Town Hall
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Campaigners fighting to restore Sheffield's historic Old Town Hall have appealed for volunteers to help clean up the surrounding area.

Castlegate has been treated like an 'outsized rubbish bin' for too long, they say, and an overdue spring clean could be the first step towards rejuvenating the 'unloved backwater'.

Rubbish in Castlegate

Rubbish in Castlegate

The Friends of the Old Town Hall group has organised a litter pick next Saturday, April 22, and wants as many people as possible to lend a hand.

Brian Holmshaw, joint secretary of the friends group, said: "The place is a mess. We're keen to make it look better, and we’re mounting a litter pick to do just that.

"We will be focusing especially on the Old Town Hall, which has been used as an outsized rubbish bin for far too long. Just look – if you can bear it – at the litter stuffed behind the window grilles, for example. But we want to go round the whole area as well.

The group believes Castlegate could soon be on the way up, after years of neglect, especially following the encouraging recent announcement about a new Digital MakerHub opening at the old Co-op building at the top of Castle Street.

It claims a much-needed tidy up could play a vital role in attracting more investors to the neighbourhood.

"We want Castlegate to make a good impression on possible investors in the area," said Brian.

"It won’t do that if there’s litter all over the place. And most Sheffielders, if you ask them what they think of Castlegate, say ‘it’s rubbish!'

"If we get the rubbish away they should be able to see the good things about the place."

The friends group was recently awarded a small council grant which it has used to buy equipment for the litter pick, including hi-vis jackets, gloves, litter grabbers and bin bags.

* The litter pick will take place on Saturday, April 22, from 10am to 1pm. Anyone is welcome to check in at the stall in Castle Street, by Cafe Roma, and to give whatever time they can spare. For more details, call Brian on 0784 5265 547.