17 Comments
Oct 8, 2022Liked by Dan Hayes

The city centre really has gone through a transformation since the 1980s in going from a car dominated space to a people first place, and it's very positive. Who wouldn't want the peace gardens, developing cafe culture of division street or award winning grey to green!

The next step for Sheffield is to start doing this in our suburban centres. Cars shouldn't be top priority, with walking made easier. We need works to remove cars from our centres like Broomhill and Sharrowvale Road whilst making it easier to walk to them.

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Well said, this is part of the reason why we are calling for the former Castle Market to be turned into a park. A park that can become the new home of the Pollen Market, host circus big tops when they visit the city in celebration of Castlegate's Circus Heritage as home to the UK's first black circus master. Where people can visit the site where Sheffield began as a Sheaf Field on the boarder of the ancient kingdoms of Northumbria, York, Elmet etc met Mercia and others before it. Where the castle ruins can be put on show and we can celebrate our city's ancient heritage and history and mark the loss of those who played a key role in all of our lives. In Cleethorpes Pier Gardens they have built Ross Castle a folly, we have the ruins of a real castle, they planted a tree in memory of all who died while at work, they have monuments to the regiments that were once based in the town. Bristol took advantage of the blitz in the second world war to uncover its castle's ruins and create 'Bristol Castle Park' which is a truly special place. It would be foolish for us to not take advantage of this opportunity and do similar.

We could dedicate similar monuments to people on the site with the addition of Mary Queen of Scotts and the English Civil War and Sieges of Sheffield. In the Sheffield Castle site we have the potential to create a new greenspace that commemorates all of this, complements other greenspaces, the new Grey to Green route along Castlegate and 'Marioland skate park' on Exchange Street.

Yet under 'Levelling Up' plans announced earlier this year a park for this site it seems as though the money is earmarked for making as much money out of the site as possible for developers and those who can afford city centre property.

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Oct 8, 2022Liked by Dan Hayes

Interesting perspective - I'm sure we could all benefit from more playful areas

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Oct 8, 2022Liked by Dan Hayes

Fantastic to see this development of a play area in the city. I cannot see the tall structures in the building site photo on the plan. What are they?

It would be good to see the council giving more support to the 2 Adventure Playgrounds we already have in Sharrow and Pitsmoor that provide wonderful safe, staffed play spaces for children from a range of backgrounds. This includes those who live without gardens and face many barriers to accessing the Peak District or other places where you learn to walk on uneven surfaces, climb, jump, take risks, while meeting a range of people and families. I hope this new park can provide some of these things for families who go into town. It won't be community based but it can encourage play which we know is good for all of us.

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Oct 8, 2022Liked by Dan Hayes

The provision of a new open space in the city centre for play and recreation is to be welcomed. It is however just a very small input against the general trend to make the city centre less and less child welcoming. Large residential developments are taking place in the city centre but these comprise to a very large extent of small studio, one and two bedroomed apartments and not designed for family accommodation. These are not only small but expensive and high-rise accommodation takes children away from the streets and open spaces that they might play in. Families therefore tend to look for more spacious accommodation in the suburbs and near to good schools. In addition, unfortunately, making more Sheffield streets traffic free may in fact deter the use of the city by children rather than the reverse. The streets will be safer but how will the children get there? The public transport system is getting worse not better and if it becomes more difficult to drive into the city centre also then families will look elsewhere for their recreation, for shopping at Meadowhall or to their local parks. Cycling to the city centre is not an option for most people and certainly not for families due not only to the lack of cycling facilities but more importantly to the geography of Sheffield. For most people cycling to the centre would require a return journey up very steep and long hills, not something that most families could manage. What would be required to make the city centre more of a play area for children would be a large investment in public transport to make it both more frequent, efficient and cheaper and the provision of family accommodation. The planners have chosen more to make the city centre a playground for young couples and students. There's nothing necessarily wrong with this decision as long as good family provision is made elsewhere. The Pound Park development whilst an excellent new facility will do little to change what is happening.

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So good to read about this new park. I have high hopes for Sheffield but cars really are a huge problem. Why does Sheffield not have a Park and Ride scheme and a reliable, unthreatented, clean energy bus service?

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Good to see some positive comments about the castle remains and a park.Interaction between Sheffield City Council and conservation groups is not proceeding as well as it should be-its really time this was brought out into the open.Over to the Sheffield Star and the Tribune.

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