Over the past 12 months, the Friends have organised a number of talks including topics such as Mary Queen of Scots, The Lords of Hallamshire, The Cathedral and also we staged a re-enactment of the siege of Sheffield Castle on what was probably the wettest day of last summer!! We have also supported our other local Friends, at Bishops House and the recently formed Friends of the Old Town Hall.
I’m sure you will have seen the rapid demolition of the old Markets site and you can already get an impression of the huge size of the old Castle footprint. As we reported in September last year, the Council were unsuccessful with their Heritage Lottery Fund bid however, a revised bid for new funding has now been submitted to compliment the Councils ‘Grey to Green’ corridor project, which stretches from Snig Hill through to the Quays.
The plan still remains to reveal what remains of the Castle, in an open space area alongside a de-culverted River Sheaf and as part of an overall improvement in the wider Castlegate area. If successful, trial archaeological trenches will start to be dug this time next year to determine the extent of the remains.
Over 240 members have joined us since we launched back in October 2013 and we look forward to increasing our membership over the coming months. We are grateful for your ongoing support, as funds raised through membership goes towards putting on talks, hiring venues etc. We were also grateful for suggestions from the members on the night and would also welcome any ideas or offers of help for the Group, moving forward.
Our guest speaker at the AGM was Vanessa Toulmin, Head of Public Engagement for Sheffield University and we learnt of the significant plans to re-vitalise the whole Castlegate area. One part of this will be the Castlegate Vibrancy Festival on 20/21 June, so watch this space for more details.
We have 2 new talks planned for the coming months, please follow the events link above. I hope you find them of interest and look forward to seeing you there.