Sheffield is a city in Yorkshire in the north of England. With a population of 564,000, it is one of the United Kingdom's biggest cities. Around 1.8 million people live in the wider metropolitan area, covering most of the county of South Yorkshire and some parts of neighbouring Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire.
Nicknamed the "Steel City", Sheffield is a major industrial, cosmopolitan and cultural centre renowned for its green open spaces, creative talents, galleries, sport facilities and cutlery. England's National City of Sport, Sheffield is also home to Britain's biggest theatre complex outside London and one of the country's most-visited shopping centres. Sheffield is an excellent place to study and the city's two universities welcome well over 10,000 overseas students each year. Unlike many other cities its size, Sheffield has a very large amount of public greenery, with trees outnumbering the human population approximately three-to-one. As well as the extensive urbanisation, one third of the city's territory is rural national park land: the Peak District is England's oldest and best-loved national park.
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See the 5 day forecast for Sheffield at the Met Office
Sheffield lies in the most southerly part of Yorkshire, with Derbyshire to the west, Nottinghamshire to the south, and Lincolnshire not far to the east. The M1 motorway runs past Sheffield's Meadowhall Shopping Centre to the east of the city centre, the beautiful Peak District extends to within the western city boundary, and the South Pennines area ("Last of the Summer Wine country") lies just to the north.
Sheffield is built on and in-between seven hills, and it is thanks to this landscape that Sheffield exists today. Even before the Industrial Revolution, the villages around Sheffield were established as centres of industry and commerce thanks to fast flowing rivers and streams that brought water down from the Peak District. The valleys through which these flowed were ideally suited for man-made dams that could be used to power water mills. A walk along the Rivelin Valley from Malin Bridge tram stop or along the Porter Valley out from Endcliffe Park towards the Peak District will reveal some of these old dams.
The city centre lies where these rivers and valleys meet. The city has expanded out along the valleys and over the hills between, creating leafy neighbourhoods and suburbs within easy reach of the city centre. Each valley that stretches out from the city centre has its own character, from the densely industrial Don Valley to the north-east, to the green and cosmopolitan residential streets around the Ecclesall Road on the Porter Valley in the south-west.
Industrial Revolution and aftermath
Industry in the city really took off when the railways arrived, allowing for the mass import of raw materials and export of finished products. The crucible technique of making exceptionally high quality steel was invented here by Benjamin Huntsman in 1852, and for decades it was to give Sheffield the economic advantage over other steel-producing cities. Sheffield is still the home to a number of cutlery and blade manufacturers (including Swann Morton), and Sheffield steel can be found in surgical equipment and kitchen drawers the world over.
However, the economic recession of the 1980s hit Sheffield hard, and large numbers of workers were left unemployed by the changing shape of heavy industry in Britain. Along with Liverpool, Sheffield gained the reputation for an openly socialist political scene in reaction to the Conservative government of the day and the not always tongue-in-cheek label of "The People's Republic of South Yorkshire" was applied to the city and its environs. The resilient spirit of Sheffield people in these bleak times made the city famous in the black comedy The Full Monty.
Sheffield is the second largest city in Yorkshire and the fourth largest in England, and its inhabitants are proud of their perceived character: while the whole of the north of England is considered to have friendly natives, Sheffielders pride themselves on a warmth and hospitality that stretches above and beyond other cities. Visitors to Sheffield may find this most noticeable in the affectionate terms that slip into everyday conversation. Even when making a simple purchase in a shop or market, you can expect to be called 'love' at least once. But as well as ticking a lot of Yorkshire stereotypes, Sheffield is also a vibrant multicultural city. With a very large student population of 67,000, many of whom are from overseas, and 20% of Sheffielders coming from an ethnic minority background as recorded in the 2011 census, the modern city is diverse and dynamic, as well as being traditional.
Sheffield is adapting as it becomes a more confident post-industrial city. Grand visions have routinely been proposed or initiated by the city or county councils, and European funding has been used on a number of public infrastructure projects that have shaped the city. This is nothing new, however, since many would argue that post-war town planners did more damage to the face of Sheffield than the Luftwaffe did during the heavy nights of World War II aerial bombing. Bold housing projects such as the widely-known (and now listed) Park Hill made Sheffield famous for the feverish vision with which architects and planners sought to reshape the city in the second half of the twentieth century. In reality, this left much of Sheffield with a poorly maintained legacy of failed utopian concrete fantasies, but this braveness and edginess is cited by many as being a fundamental part of Sheffield's character.
Now, at the beginning of the twenty-first century, a number of commercial developers are making big marks on the cityscape, with large apartment complexes that aim to correct the errors through planning policy of similar developments seen in Manchester and Leeds. Whether the formula works in Sheffield remains to be seen: with so many affordable and attractive suburbs within easy reach, it may be difficult to turn Sheffield's compact city centre into a mixed area of commerce and residential properties. Having said that, large parts of the city centre (around Fargate, Barkers Pool, Hallam University and the theatre district) have seen investment allowing for pedestrianised streets for markets, public squares and open spaces giving a distinctly Continental feel to the centre. The challenge will now be to extend the regeneration throughout the central area, while maintaining the achievements made in the heart of the city.
Even if the built environment of Sheffield occasionally leaves something to be desired, a deliberate strategy of investing in and promoting academic achievement has begun to influence the demographic make-up of the city. Sheffield is home to two universities (the University of Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam University) with excellent ratings in both teaching and research, it is also proving to be an attractive place for graduates to settle in. Sheffield is increasingly prosperous and economically active.
Culturally, Sheffield's location and edgy environment has nurtured a superb reputation for music. Sheffield is home to Jarvis Cocker, Human League, Def Leppard, ABC, Baby Bird, Pulp, Arctic Monkeys, Milburn, Bromheads Jacket, The Long Blondes, and Little Man Tate to name just a few. The larger-than-average student population means that nightlife is always lively, and suitably different to that of Leeds and Manchester. Sheffield's proximity to the Peak District National Park (one third of Sheffield's territory lies within the park's boundaries) makes it an ideal city base for an outdoor-orientated holiday.
- Robin Hood Doncaster Sheffield, one of the newest airports in the UK (airport code: DSA), is approximately 35 minutes' drive away from the centre of Sheffield. To reach Sheffield by public transport from the airport, take the hourly shuttle bus (M–Sa 6ː05AM–11ː05PM, Su 9ː05AM–6ː05PM) to Doncaster railway station and travel by train to Sheffield. Largely geared up to serve the domestic holiday market, most flights arrive from Mediterranean resorts, though there are also small number of transatlantic flights operating.
The airlines that serve the airport are:
- Aer Lingus: Dublin. Also offers flights, via Dublin, from Boston, Chicago O'Hare, New York JFK and Toronto.
- BH Air: Burgas.
- FlyBe: Jersey. Commencing March 2016: Paris, Amsterdam, Berlin, Faro, Malaga, Alicante, Newquay
- Ryanair: Girona, Tenerife South.
- Thomas Cook Antalya, Dalaman, Enfidha, Palma.
- Thomson Airways: Alicante, Burgas, Crete, Corfu, Dalaman, Faro, Gran Canaria, Ibiza, Jersey, Lapland, Larnaca, Malaga, Malta, Menorca, Montego Bay, Palma, Paphos, Prague, Reus, Rhodes, Salzburg, Sharm el Sheikh, Tenerife, Turin, Varna, Verona, Zakynthos, Zante.
- WizzAir Bydgoszcz, Gdańsk, Katowice, Lublin, Poznań, Vilnius, Warsaw, Wrocław.
Car parks serving Doncaster Sheffield Airport:
|Address||On/Off Airport||Distance / Transfer Time||Security|| Park Mark®
|Long Stay Car Park||Robin Hood Airport DN9 3RH.||On||3 Minutes Walking distance||CCTV, Secure Fencing, 24-hour on-site security.||Yes||You will need your booking confirmation with you when you arrive at the car park and when you leave, in case there is a problem with any of the machines.|
- Manchester Airport (IATA: MAN) is further away than either Robin Hood or East Midlands, but it handles considerably more flights than any of the other nearby airports and offers the widest choice of long haul flights to the north of England, including several daily flights from North America. The airport is linked to Sheffield by an hourly direct train and is approximately 70 minutes by road from Sheffield city centre.
- East Midlands Airport (IATA: EMA) is approximately one hour south of Sheffield on the M1 motorway. There are several daily bus services between Sheffield and the airport, operated by GorillaBus and National Express. Trains also run to Sheffield from East Midlands Parkway station, which is a short bus ride from the airport.
- Leeds Bradford Airport is around an hour by car, train or bus to Sheffield.
- Wikivoyage has a guide to Rail travel in the United Kingdom.
Sheffield station (sometimes known as Sheffield Midland) is to the south-east side of the city centre, adjacent to Sheffield Hallam University. You can reach the city centre on foot via Sheaf Square and Howard Street in less than ten minutes, or in about five minutes by tram.
Supertram services stop next to the station (Sheffield Station/Sheffield Hallam University stop), directly outside the end of the pedestrian bridge that crosses over the platforms, at the far end from the main entrance. There is a lift from the station concourse and platforms.
Most long-distance coaches and city buses stop at Sheffield Interchange, two minutes walk from the station (across the pelican crossing and through the covered walkway).
Meadowhall Station is located at the Meadowhall shopping complex in the north-eastern suburbs of Sheffield, but can also serve as a useful point to reach the Motorpoint Arena or Valley Centertainment leisure park, via the Supertram. The station itself has two platforms and is next to a tram and bus interchange, with an indoor waiting area linking the two.
Sheffield also lies at the crossroads of three major railways. The Midland Mainline (south-east to north), cross country route (south-west and Midlands to north east and Scotland) and a trans-Pennine service (north-west to Yorkshire and the East).
Summary of services:
- London St. Pancras International (via Leicester and Derby), twice per hour, operated by East Midlands Trains
- Edinburgh Waverley, Newcastle Central, and York twice per hour, operated by Cross Country Trains
- Birmingham New Street and the West Midlands once per hour, operated by Cross Country Trains
- Penzance, Plymouth, Exeter St Davids and Bristol Temple Meads once per hour, operated by Cross Country Trains.
- Manchester Piccadilly and Manchester Airport once per hour operated by TransPennine Express
- Manchester Piccadilly and Liverpool Lime Street once per hour operated by East Midlands Trains
- Hope Valley (Peak District) stations once per hour, operated by Northern Rail.
- Leeds up to three times an hour, operated by East Midlands Trains (fast intercity services) and Northern Rail (commuter quality and speed).
- Nottingham and Nottinghamshire once per hour, operated by East Midlands Trains
- South Wales direct from Cardiff Central and Newport, operated by Cross Country Trains
Timetables and fare information for all train services can be obtained from National Rail.
Sheffield sits beside the M1 motorway, one of the UK's primary north–south routes linking Sheffield with London, Leicester, Nottingham and Leeds. The M1's interchange with the M62, the main route from Manchester, Liverpool and Hull, is 15 miles north of Sheffield. The city centre is most easily reached from junction 33 of the M1, via the Sheffield Parkway dual-carriageway. A convenient park and ride tram stop (Nunnery Square) is located close to the city end of the Parkway and is well-signposted from the motorway.
Two scenic routes from Manchester, the Snake Pass (A57) and the Woodhead Pass (A628) make for breathtaking trips through the Peak District National Park. In the event of heavy snowfall in winter, the police can and do close both routes to all traffic.
It is also possible to use the Peak District as the scenic route from Birmingham (via Lichfield and Ashbourne) or Stoke-on-Trent (via Leek and Longnor). Beware that the route becomes very busy over holiday periods, and can be treacherous during cold or snowy weather.
Sheffield Interchange is the city's hub for local and national bus services, and is located two minutes walk from Sheffield's railway station. National Express operate long distance services from all parts of the country, including a regular service from London Victoria and Golders Green.
GorillaBus operate services from Liverpool, Manchester and the Midlands to Brown Street in the city centre, and to Meadowhall Interchange.
The discount long distance bus operator Megabus does not serve the city centre, but offers several services each day from London to Meadowhall Interchange. Meadowhall is twenty minutes away from the city centre by tram, or five minutes by an equally frequent train. Megabus departures may not be listed on departure screens at the Meadowhall Interchange: services generally depart from the same bay as National Express services.
There are visitor moorings for canal boats at the Victoria Quays basin, found to the north of the city centre.
Sheffield's city centre is compact and within it, no two attractions are further apart than a 30 minute walk. The city centre has seen significant work done to prioritise pedestrian access, including extensive pedestrianisation, excellent links from the railway station to the city centre and a comprehensive map and signage system. Even outside the central area, Sheffield is pleasantly walkable, with both the Don Valley attractions (1–4 miles) and the Peak District (from 6 miles) being linked by walking routes from the city centre. Sheffield walking directions can be planned online with the Walkit route planner.
Cycle hire is available at the railway station.
All public transport in Sheffield is operated under licence to Travel South Yorkshire, who are the main source of unbiased travel information, updates, timetables and maps for the city.
The Stagecoach Supertram, normally known just as the Supertram, is a modern tram network with three lines that serve the city centre and many of Sheffield's suburbs. Services run from just before 6AM until around midnight (M–Sa) and from around 7:30AM until just before midnight (Su).
- The Blue route, distinguished by a blue letter B, runs from Malin Bridge via the city centre to the railway station and Halfway.
- The Yellow route, distinguished by a yellow letter Y, runs from Meadowhall via the city centre to Middlewood.
- The Purple route, distinguished by a purple letter P, merges the eastern end of the two other lines, running from Herdings Park to Meadowhall, via Cathedral in the city centre.
Most stations are now fitted with LED signs displaying the time and destination of the next four trams to arrive, however during the day, the Blue and Yellow lines run at a frequency of about every 10 minutes, while the Purple line runs every 30 minutes.
Tickets are purchased from the conductor after you board; retain these for inspection. Notices at your tram stop will indicate the route and fare needed for your destination.
A single ticket within the city centre boundary (stations between Granville Road, The University of Sheffield, and Hyde Park) costs £1.50. After that, fares cost up to £2.70, depending on how far you travel, although the £1.50 fare is still available for short journeys outside the central area. Children under 5 travel free. Senior citizens travel for free except on weekdays before 9AM on any mode of public transport. Other concessions are available only to applicable residents of Sheffield, Rotherham, Doncaster and Barnsley. For those without concessions, it often works out cheaper to buy a City Wide day ticket, which costs £4.30 and allows unlimited travel on all trams and buses in Sheffield, irrespective of the operator. A £13.50 Stagecoach Megarider ticket is also available, allowing unlimited travel for a week on Stagecoach trams and buses.
Visitors may also find this official guide with map useful.
All public transport in Sheffield is operated under licence to Travel South Yorkshire, who are the main source of unbiased travel information, updates, timetables and maps for the city.
Most buses in Sheffield are operated by the large private operators First and Stagecoach, though there are some smaller operators running certain routes. Buses generally run every 10–20 minutes during the day, and every 20–60 minutes in the evening. Some routes offer a higher frequency of service (every 4-10 minutes throughout the day and evening).
A single fare costs £1.40. The South Yorkshire Day Tripper, costing £6.00, allows bus, tram and train travel across South Yorkshire (after 9:30AM) all day, whereas the City Wide ticket (£4.30 for a day, other longer tickets available) allows travel on all buses and trams within the city of Sheffield.
All public transport in Sheffield is operated under licence to Travel South Yorkshire, who are the main source of unbiased travel information, updates, timetables and maps for the city.
Although there aren't many rail services within Sheffield itself, there is a decent network of suburban rail services serving the city region, all of which depart from Sheffield Midland station. Services are operated by Northern Rail, and depart to Barnsley via Meadowhall, Chapeltown, Elsecar, and Wombwell, to Doncaster, via Meadowhall, Rotherham, Swinton, Mexborough, and Conisborough, to Chesterfield via Dronfield, to the Hope Valley via Dore, and to Nottinghamshire via Darnall, Woodhouse, Kiveton Bridge, and Kiveton Park.
By taxi and black cab
There are no longer any night bus routes in the city and all bus and tram services terminate around midnight. Sheffield's three main taxi companies operate 24 hours a day with considerably cheaper fares than other cities. Black cabs can be hailed in the street in the city centre and West End as far out as Broomhill (particularly on West Street, around the universities and at the railway station), as well as on some of the main routes into the city, but elsewhere it is often necessary to phone for a taxi:
Sheffield city centre has plenty to offer the visitor. It is home to the UK's largest theatre complex outside of London, several nationally-important museums and galleries and a host of smaller attractions and unique dining and shopping experiences.
- Bank Street Arts, 32 - 40 Bank St, S1 2DS (Not well-advertised on the street; pay attention to the house numbers and you will find it. Supertram: Cathedral.), ☎ +44 114 346-3034. W–Sa 11AM–4PM. Arts centre which houses some of the best new art, writing and culture from across the region and throughout the UK. Free.
- Central Library, Tudor Sq, S1 1XZ (National Rail and Supertram: Sheffield Station), ☎ +44 114 273-4727. M Tu Th F 9:30AM–5:30PM, W 1PM–8PM, Sa 10AM–4PM, Su closed. A grand 1930s library in Art Deco style with an impressive volume of books. Free.
- Graves Gallery, Surrey St, S1 1XZ. (Above the Central Library. National Rail and Supertram: Sheffield Station), ☎ +44 114 278-2600, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. M–Sa 10AM–5PM. Sheffield's municipal art collection. Home to British, European, Islamic and Chinese art. Includes works by Picasso, Stanley Spencer and Bridget Riley. Often has notable travelling exhibitions. Free.
- Millennium Gallery, Arundel Gate, S1 2PP (National Rail and Supertram: Sheffield Station.), ☎ +44 114 278-2600, e-mail: email@example.com. M–Sa 8AM–5PM (exhibitions from 10AM), Su 11AM–5PM. Bank holidays 10AM-5PM, closed 25, 26 Dec and 1 Jan. A gallery dedicated to arts and craft and design. As well as space for temporary exhibitions, there are three permanent galleries. The Craft and Design Gallery shows the work of past and present craftsmen and designers. The Metalwork Gallery includes an extensive collection of Sheffield-made cutlery and extravagant pieces made for the local Assay Office. The Ruskin Gallery hosts the collection of the Guild of Saint George, which was established by John Ruskin in the 19th century. Free.
- National Emergency Services Museum, West Bar, S3 8PT (Supertram: Cathedral, follow pedestrian signs for Law Courts), ☎ +44 114 249-1999, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Sa Su 11AM–5PM, school term time W–F 10AM–2PM, school holidays M–F 10AM–4PM, closed between Christmas and New Year. The world's largest collection of vehicles, uniforms and memorabilia from the police force, fire brigade and ambulance service. Adults £5, Children 3–16 years old £4, Children under 3 years old free, Families £14.
- Peace Gardens, Pinstone St, S1 2HH (Adjacent to the Town Hall. Supertram: Cathedral). The rising and falling fountains and grassed areas make this small piece of open space popular in summer, with many people choosing to eat picnics here. The gardens are also often used for festivals and entertainment.
- Sheffield Cathedral (The Cathedral Church of St Peter and St Paul), Church St, S1 1HA (Supertram: Cathedral), e-mail: email@example.com. Tu–F 8AM–6:30PM; Sa 8AM–4PM; Su, M 8AM–5PM. Sheffield's newly-renovated 13th Century cathedral. Not to be missed are the crypt - dedicated to the York and Lancaster Regiment of the British Army, the 1960s nave and the gargoyles on the intricate gatepost. Free guided tours are available on request and last around 45 minutes. Free.
- Winter Garden, 90 Surrey St, S1 2LH (Adjacent to Millennium Galleries. National Rail and Supertram: Sheffield Station). Daily 8AM–6PM. A glass and timber temperate glasshouse in the heart of the city centre, home to exotic ferns, trees, cacti and other plants from around the world. Temperatures are kept relatively cool in summer and warm in winter. A coffee bar inside makes it a pleasant place to sit, particularly if the weather outside is not so nice. There is a visitor information stall in the gardens, space for a pop-up shop and a tourist information centre on nearby Norfolk Row. Free.
- Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet, Abbeydale Road South, Beauchief, S7 2QW (Bus: 97 and 98. National Rail: Dore & Totley), ☎ +44 114 272-2106, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. M–Th 10AM–4PM, Su 11AM–4:45PM; Closed (rather annoyingly) F and Sa. The early industrial history of Sheffield, including water-powered grinding wheels and trip hammers, set among a collection of Grade I- and II-listed buildings. Adults £4, Concessions £3, Under 16s Free.
- Botanical Gardens, Clarkehouse Road, Broomhall, S10 2LN (Bus: 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 88 to Ecclesall Road, entrance on Thompson Road), ☎ +44 114 268-6001. The restored Victorian gardens are a tranquil green oasis to which to escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. Highlights include the formal borders, the rose garden and the Mediterranean zone, as well as some rather grand glass houses designed by Joseph Paxton. Look out for the semi-hidden bear pit, which was indeed home to a bear in the 19th century, until (according to local legend at least) a young boy fell in and was mauled to death. Free.
- General Cemetery, Cemetery Avenue, Sharrow, S11 8NT (Bus: 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 88 to Ecclesall Road. Walk down the appropriately named Cemetery Avenue.), ☎ +44 114 268-3486, e-mail: email@example.com. Open all day. Historically important Victorian cemetery, which is the final "home" for 87,000 people, including influential Sheffielders such as steel manufacturer Mark Firth and Chartist Samuel Holberry. Many of the graves are unmarked pauper graves, some with 40 or more burials in one grave. A beautiful and fascinating spot, where visitors can enjoy some atmospheric wildness near the centre of town. Free.
- Kelham Island Museum, Alma Street, Kelham Island, S3 8RY (Supertram: Shalesmoor, from where the museum is well-signposted), ☎ +44 114 272-2106, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. M–Th 10AM–4PM, Su 11AM–4:45PM. The industrial and social history of Sheffield. Main attraction is the massive 3-cylinder rolling mill engine (in steam every hour) from the River Don Steelworks. Adults £5, Concessions £4, Under 16s Free.
- London Road (Immediately south of St Mary's Gate (Inner Ring Road). Bus: 10, 20, 25, 33, 43, 53, 294, X17). Unofficially - and inaccurately - known as "Sheffield's Chinatown", this buzzing inner city road is in fact one of the most ethnically diverse areas of Sheffield. There are indeed many Chinese restaurants and stores as well as the Sheffield Chinese Community Centre, but there are also large Arabic, Japanese, Polish, Thai and Turkish populations. In the area is Sheffield's main mosque which welcomes visitors by appointment.
- Victoria Quays (Sheffield Canal Basin), Wharf Street, S2 5SY (Supertram: Fitzalan Square. Walk across the pedestrian and tram bridge to Park Square, and follow the signs.). An attractive canal basin, with colourful narrowboats and old warehouses. The starting point for boat trips in summer.
- Weston Park, Western Bank, S10 2TP (Surrounded by University of Sheffield buildings. Bus: 51, 52, 95. Supertram: University). This grand 5 hectare park, a mixture of mature landscaped trees and flower beds, includes a working bandstand, war memorial to the York and Lancaster Regiment's dead, tennis courts and water features. The park plays host to many events during summer.
- Weston Park Museum, Western Bank, S10 2TP (Within Weston Park itself. Bus: 51 and 52. Supertram: University), ☎ +44 114 278-2600, e-mail: email@example.com. M–F 10AM–4PM, Sa & Bank Holidays 10AM–5PM, Su 11AM–4PM. A pleasant and modern museum, particularly suitable for children, situated in a fittingly grand old building. Galleries on Sheffield's natural and social history as well as the Arctic, art and treasures. The temporary gallery often hosts touring exhibitions from the Victoria and Albert Museum. Free.
- A&G Passenger Boats, Victoria Quays, Wharf Street, S2 5SY (Supertram: Fitzalan Square. Walk across the pedestrian and tram bridge to Park Square, and follow the signs to Victoria Quays.), ☎ +44 114 278-6314. Jul–Aug. Take a "Heritage Cruise" down the Sheffield and Tinsley Canal on board the LB Hardfleet. Turn-up-and-go and booking both possible. Adults £7.50–9.50, Children £5.50–8.50, Over 60s £6.50–7.50, Family (2 adults & 2 children) £21.50.
- Heeley City Farm, Richards Road, Heeley, S2 3DT (Bus: 19, 47, 252 to Prospect Road; 10, 20, 25, 43, 44, 53, 294, C2, X17 to Wells Road.), ☎ +44 114 258-0482, fax: +44 114 255-1400, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Summer 9:00AM–5:00PM. Winter 10:00AM–4:00PM. Inner city farm and environmental visitor centre with a range of farm animals, poultry, small animals, gardens and vegetable plots. Visitors may undertake farm duties on a voluntary basis. Free.
- Spa 1877, 65 Victoria Street, S3 7QD (Supertram: University / West Street), ☎ +44 114 221-1877. Unisex M W 10AM–8:30PM, Su 9AM–6:30PM. Women only Tu Th–Sa 10AM–8:30PM. Restored Victorian Turkish baths (hamam) offering a range of treatments and spa days to suit almost any budget. £30–£195.
- Peak District: With Britain's first national park on their doorstep, it's no surprise that Sheffielders spend so much of their leisure time just beyond the city limits. A haven for hiking, mountain biking, climbing, off-roading, paragliding and watersports, the locals treat the Peak District like one big playground; you should do too! See Go Next section for detailed lists of activities and itineraries.
Festivals and events
While the events calendar hits its peak in October, there are many other festivals worth attending at all times of the year.
- Outlines: 27 February 2016 . One day music festival, new for 2016. A winter spin-off of Tramlines, sadly without the same low prices and free gigs as its popular parent event. (date needs updating)
- BeerX (Festival of Beer): 16-19 March 2016 . 250 British craft beers, as well as food, live music and sport to enjoy. (date needs updating)
- Sheffield Food Festival: 28-30 May 2016 . A culinary festival showcasing Sheffield's best offerings of food and drink with fresh hot food stalls, pop up bars, cookery master classes and local produce stalls.
- Sheffield DocFest: 10-15 June 2016 . One of the biggest and best documentary film festivals in the world.
- Tramlines: 22-24 July 2016 . Sheffield's annual music festival attracts well over 100 artists and groups, and is well-known for its cheap (and often free) concerts.
- Sheffield Film and Comic Con: 13-14 August 2016 . Stars and memorabilia from film, TV and wrestling appear at the Motorpoint Arena.
- Festival of the Mind: 14-25 September 2016 . In and around the University of Sheffield. A biannual celebration of ideas, incorporating the arts, philosophy, science and technology.
- Last Laugh Comedy Festival: October 2016 . The UK's biggest stand-up names come together for a month in the Steel City.
- MADE Festival (The Entrepreneur Festival): October 2016 . The UK's largest business and entrepreneurship festival featuring success stories, masterclasses and fringe events.
- Off The Shelf (Festival of Words): October 2016 . Over 200 author events, book readings, poetry recitals, debates and workshops, at various venues around town.
- Sheffield Design Week: 22-30 October 2016 . A "citywide celebration of design in all its forms", including graphic design, architecture, manufacturing, fashion and film. Features exhibitions, workshops, talks, guided walks and installations.
- Christmas Market: 19 - 24 December 2016 . Traditional wooden cabins offering many gifts and treats including hand-made craft and seasonal food and drink.
Second only to London's West End as the UK's greatest concentration of theatres and cinemas, Sheffield's Theatreland is based on and around the pedestrianised Tudor Square.
- Crucible Theatre, Tudor Square, S1 1DA (Supertram: Castle Square), ☎ +44 114 249-6000, e-mail: email@example.com. As well as being Sheffield's largest and best-known theatre, the Crucible is also home to the widely televised annual World Snooker Championships.
- Curzon Cinema, 16 George Street, S1 2PF (Supertram: Castle Square. The narrow George Street runs between the High Street and Norfolk Street), ☎ +44 330 500-1331. Open every day 12 midday to midnight. A three-screen "boutique cinema" in a tastefully-restored Grade II-listed former bank, with several lounge areas and a popular rooftop bar.
- Library Theatre, Tudor Square, S1 1XZ (Inside the Central Library. Supertram: Castle Square), ☎ +44 114 273-4102, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Shows productions by local amateur dramatics groups.
- Lyceum Theatre, Tudor Square, S1 1DA (Supertram: Castle Square), ☎ +44 114 249-6000, e-mail: email@example.com. This beautiful 19th Century theatre offers Sheffield's best selection of productions alongside the Crucible
- Montgomery Theatre, Surrey St, S1 2LG (Supertram: Cathedral), ☎ +44 114 249-6000. Methodist-run theatre which shows productions aimed at families and younger audiences.
- Odeon Cinema, Arundel Gate, S1 1DL (Supertram: Castle Square), ☎ +44 871 224 4007. Slightly shabby multiplex showing all the latest cinema releases
- Showroom Cinema, 15 Paternoster Row, S1 2BX (National Rail and Supertram: Sheffield Station), ☎ +44 114 275-7727. Sheffield's largest independent cinema, showing a range of independent and foreign film
- Studio Theatre, Tudor Square, S1 1DA (Within the Crucible. Supertram: Castle Square), ☎ +44 114 249-6000, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Auditorium within the Crucible for smaller-scale productions
Other theatres and cinemas
- Cineworld IMAX Cinema, Valley Centertainment, Broughton Lane, S9 2EP (Located in the Valley Centertainment leisure park. Supertram: Valley Centertainment), ☎ +44 871 200 2000. Multiplex cinema with 20 large screens - one of the busiest cinemas in the country and the largest Cineworld branch. Also includes an IMAX screen, showing films on a massive screen in 3D, and a 4DX screen, showing 3D films complete with motion and tactile effects.
- Drama Studio, Shearwood Road, West End, S10 2TD (Fronts onto Glossop Road. Supertram: University. Bus: 6, 10, 120), ☎ +44 114 222 0200, e-mail: email@example.com. Box office: M–F 9:30AM–5PM. 200-seat theatre owned by the University of Sheffield, atmospherically located in a converted Victorian church. Regular productions by both students and local drama groups, including couple of foreign-language (mainly French and Spanish) productions throughout the year.
- Lantern Theatre, Kenwood Park Road, Nether Edge S7 1NF (Bus route 22 stops at the end of Kenwood Park Road.), ☎ +44 333 666 3366, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Sheffield's oldest and smallest theatre, located in a quiet Victorian residential neighbourhood
- Sheffield City Hall, Barkers Pool, S1 2JA (Supertram: City Hall), ☎ +44 114 278-9789. A large venue which hosts concerts, opera, dance and comedy gigs
- Vue Cinema, Meadowhall, S9 1EP (In the Oasis Food Court of the Meadowhall Centre. National Rail and Supertram: Meadowhall Interchange), ☎ +44 871 224 0240. Medium-sized multiplex
Sheffield is England's National City of Sport and is home to a number of top sporting teams:
- Sheffield United Football Club (The Blades), home matches played at Bramall Lane Stadium, Bramall Lane, S2 4SU (National Rail: Sheffield Station, 1 mile. Supertram: Granville Road, ½ mile. Many fans simply walk from the city centre or railway station.). After promotion to the Premier League in 2006, a series of boardroom mistakes and managerial changes have meant that the Blades now play in League One.
- Sheffield Wednesday Football Club (The Owls), home matches played at Hillsborough Stadium, Hillsborough, S6 1SW (Supertram: Leppings Lane). The Owls play in the Championship, the second tier of English football. Financial mis-management and poor executive decisions have seen Wednesday suffer two relegations in the past 10 years. There is a memorial to the 1989 Hillsborough Disaster, which claimed the lives of 96 Liverpool FC fans, outside the Parkside Road entrance to the stadium.
- Sheffield Eagles (rugby league), home matches played at Owlerton Greyhound Stadium, Penistone Road, S6 2DE (Supertram: Hillsborough Park, ½ mile). A Rugby League team that play in National League One.
- Sheffield Hockey Club, home games played at Abbeydale Sports Club, Abbeydale Road South, S17 3LJ (National Rail: Dore & Totley). One of the top hockey clubs in the UK, playing both men and women's teams at all levels both indoors and outdoors.
- Sheffield Sharks (basketball), homes games played at Ponds Forge, Sheaf Street, S1 2BP (Supertram: Fitzalan Square). Basketball team that plays in the British Basketball League.
- Sheffield Steelers (ice hockey), homes games played at the Motorpoint Arena, S9 2DE (Supertram: Arena). An ice hockey team that play in the UK Elite League. There is a strong family ethos within the club, and the match atmosphere rather Americanised, in great contrast to what you would find at local football.
- Sheffield Tigers (speedway motoracing), Owlerton Greyhound Stadium, Penistone Road, S6 2DE (Supertram: Hillsborough Park, ½ mile). A Speedway team in the English Premier League.
- Sheffield Steel Roller Girls and The Inhuman League (rollerblading), various venues around the city including Ponds Forge and Skate Central. Sheffield's women's and men's flat-track roller derby teams.
- Ponds Forge International Sports Centre, Sheaf Street, S1 2BP (Supertram: Fitzalan Square), ☎ +44 114 223-3419, e-mail: email@example.com. M–F 6:30AM–9:30PM, Sa Su 8:00AM–8:00PM. A huge gymnasium and swimming centre with Olympic-sized pool, diving pool and fun pool with waves, flumes and lazy river.
- iceSheffield, Coleridge Road, Attercliffe, S9 5DA (Supertram: Arena), ☎ +44 114 223-3900, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Tu–Su open all day. A big indoor ice sports centre near the attractions of the Lower Don Valley. Two full-sized ice pads for ice sports and recreational skating. Adult peak £5.50, off-peak and concession prices vary.
Sheffield City Council has a portal for the complete list of the many interesting walks throughout the city's urban, suburban, industrial and rural landscapes, but here are five of the best:
- Five Weirs Walk (Start at the Lady's Bridge, which is directly downhill from the Castlegate bus stops and Castle Square tram station). 5 miles, can be extended or shortened. A walk between the city centre and Meadowhall along the River Don through many interesting neighbourhoods, including industrial wasteland, the still-living steelworks, Sheffield's Sikh temple, and the unexpected treats of nature reserves and ancient cemeteries. Kingfishers and otters can be seen, even in the heart of the city. Although you can catch the tram or train back into town from Meadowhall, more active travellers may wish to continue along the river into Tinsley and Rotherham, or else complete the so-called "Blue Loop" by making the return journey on foot along the Sheffield and Tinsley Canal.
- Norfolk Heritage Trail (Starts near St Aidans Road bus stop - routes 42, 44, 50, 53, 71, 120, 122, 123, 294 - and ends at Cathedral Supertram station.). 2¾ miles. A signed route between Manor Lodge and the cathedral, linking a range of historical buildings and open spaces with connections to the Dukes of Norfolk. You will see brilliant views of the city from the Cholera Monument.
- Sheffield Town Walk (Starts and ends at Cathedral tram station). 2 miles. Circular walk around the historic city centre, taking in the Cathedral Quarter, canal basin, law courts and Kelham Island.
- Rivelin Valley Nature Trail (Starts a short distance from Malin Bridge tram station and ends at Lodge Moor bus stop - the number 51 will take you back into town). 4 miles, shorter circular walks at either end possible. Where the city meets the Peak District. This popular conservation area is home to a great deal of wildlife. Several well-maintained footpaths and bridleways make this an excellent choice for families, with very easy walking routes.
- Wyming Brook Nature Reserve (Car park on site. The nearest bus stop (Lodge Moor - route 51) is 1 mile away, which while not ideal still makes the walk accessible to those relying on public transport.). This gorge is now a protected nature reserve. A rocky footpath leads you from the car park down along the bottom of the gorge, crossing the stream several times, to a reservoir. There are many possible walks of varying lengths you could try.
Hiking boots are recommended on all walks, especially the more rural routes. Since Sheffield is extremely hilly, most walks have lots of ups and downs to them.
There are two major universities in Sheffield, both of which attract large numbers of international students both from within and beyond the European Union:
- University of Sheffield - An older "red brick" university belonging to the prestigious Russell Group of top British universities. It spans part of the city centre and most of the neighbourhood of Broomhill. Its student's union has been named as the best in the country year on year since 2007 and the University's student experience has been voted number one since 2013.
- Sheffield Hallam University- A modern ex-polytechnic which focuses on Engineering, Management and Computing courses. Although it is spread across the city, its main campus is located in the 'Cultural Industries Quarter' of the city centre, near the railway station. It is also one of the largest universities in the country, with nearly 30,000 students.
Additionally, the Sheffield College is the largest establishment of its kind in the country.
Though Sheffield's past was largely based in the manufacturing sector, the emphasis has moved to services. A number of government offices and large businesses (Insight, Dixons Group and Freemans) operate their headquarters or regional centres in Sheffield. There are a large number of call centres in and around the city (e.g. Virgin Media & Ant Marketing).
Sheffield has two main shopping destinations. The city centre is compact, varied and walkable. It has a good range of high street and independent stores. The out-of-town Meadowhall shopping centre is South Yorkshire's largest and has a huge range of shops. Beyond these two behemoths, Sheffield's other shopping experiences range from suburban high streets to local shopping centres and designated themed quarters.
The centre, though compact, packs in a lot of national chains and independent shops. Visitors will however find there are fewer shops than other cities Sheffield's size, due to Meadowhall's proximity and size. Much of the city centre is pedestrianised, and this makes an easy and pleasant environment to walk around. There are two main axes of central shopping streets which meet at Fargate. The first and longer of the two runs in a gently curving line from south-west to north-east. From south to north you will find:
- The Moor (Many buses stop on Pinstone Street and Eyre Street.). A broad pedestrianised street in the process of being regenerated. Here you can find a large covered market and a slightly bizarre mix of discount retailers and department stores (including Debenhams, TJ Hughes and Sheffield's very own independent and idiosyncratic Atkinsons).
- Orchard Square (Supertram: City Hall). A precinct between Fargate and the High Street mainly containing fashion outlets and jewellers, but also a large Waterstones bookshop, a nice chocolatier and a Wargames Emporium.
- Fargate (Supertram: Cathedral). Sheffield's main pedestrianised shopping street, where many chain stores can be found, including Dorothy Perkins, Footlocker, HMV, Marks & Spencer, Next, Top Shop and USC. There are often markets on Fargate, with past themes as diverse as arts and craft, gardening, continental, middle eastern bazaar and the popular Christmas Market.
- Chapel Walk (Supertram: Cathedral). A narrow alley off Fargate with a number of interesting independent stores and cosy cafés.
- High Street (Supertram: Cathedral / Castle Square / Fitzalan Square). Where buses and trams run uphill towards the Cathedral. Larger shops include HMV, Primark, Sports Direct and TK Maxx.
- Castlegate Quarter (Supertram: Castle Square). An inexpensive district, which is far from looking its best at the moment and would be better avoided, the cheap street market notwithstanding.
The second axis heads west from Fargate. From east to west, you will find:
- Barkers Pool (Supertram: City Hall). A square dominated by its war memorial, has the City Hall theatre on one side and a large John Lewis department store on the other, as well as smaller shops.
- Division Street (Supertram: City Hall / West Street). Along with surrounding areas of the "Devonshire Quarter", Division Street is Sheffield's indie area. There are a number of alternative clothing and vintage stores, as well as the fascinatingly quirky Rare & Racy book and record shop and a prominent sex shop.
- West Street (Supertram: West Street (duh!)). One block north and parallel to Division Street, where many pubs and bars can be found, as well as a selection of independent clothes retailers.
There are a number of food shops and markets which may be of use to those staying in the city centre: The Co-operative in Castlegate, Marks & Spencer on Fargate, the aforementioned Moor Market, Sainsbury's on Arundel Gate, Division Street and The Moor, Tesco on West Street and Church Street and the very popular Simmonite butcher and fishmonger, also on Division Street.
Outside the city centre
- Meadowhall, S9 1EP (By road, M1 junction 34. National Rail, bus and Supertram: Meadowhall Interchange. Alternative Supertram: Tinsley / Meadowhall South. The rail service from Sheffield Midland is cheaper, quicker and more frequent than the tram or bus routes.), ☎ +44 845 600 6800. Shops: M–F 10AM–9PM, Sa 9AM–8PM, Su 11AM–5PM, Oasis Food Court: M–Sa 9AM–10PM, Su 10AM–9PM. One of the largest shopping centres in the country, with 280 high-end stores and over 30 million visitors every year. Given its size and pre-eminent status in the region, Meadowhall is always busy and often crowded, making it a less relaxed environment than the city centre, albeit with a more complete retail experience.
- Crystal Peaks, Beighton, S20 7PJ (In the south eastern suburb of Beighton. Supertram: Crystal Peaks), ☎ +44 114 251-0457. M–W Sa 9AM–5:30PM Th F 9AM–8PM Su 10AM–4PM. A smaller shopping centre than Meadowhall with around 100 shops.
- Sheffield Antiques Quarter, Around Heeley, Nether Edge and Sharrow (Along and between Abbeydale Road and Broadfield Road. Served by bus routes 20, 25, 53, 74, 76, 87, 97 and 98). The place for antiques, arts and crafts, rare books and retro and vintage clothing, with around 40 participating businesses. A useful trail map can be downloaded here.
- Broomhill is a fairly self-contained area: a pleasant mix of student neighbourhood and well-heeled suburb. Only a mile from the city centre, it has an interesting range of shops from inexpensive to trendy. Music lovers should make time for the impressive second-hand vinyl / CD collection at Record Collector on Fulwood Road. Sci-Fi enthusiasts would be advised to head to Galaxy 4 on Glossop Road, which has a particularly fine selection of Doctor Who merchandise. Served by bus routes 51, 52 and 120.
- Ecclesall Road's independent fashion shops, bars, cafés and restaurants run from the inner ring road for over a mile out to the bohemian Hunters Bar. Served by bus routes 65, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 88, 215 and 272.
- Hillsborough has a large shopping area comparable in size and scope to that of many town centres around England. The high street has all the old-fashioned essentials including a butcher, a baker and a, erm, hardware store. The Hillsborough Barracks outdoor shopping centre contains a variety of local and chain stores and a Morrisons hypermarket. Supertram: Hillsborough Interchange.
- Although international food shops can be found all over Sheffield, areas of particular note include Attercliffe and Darnall for South Asian, Burngreave for African and West Indian and Sharrow for Arabic, Chinese, Eastern European and Turkish.
There are many good, cheap places to eat in and around the city. If you would rather stay in and still want to have a taste of what Sheffield has to offer, you can always opt for food from one of the takeaways in Sheffield . Usually prices range from £7 to £20 for a meal for two.
- Aslan's, 187 West Street, S1 4EW (Supertram: West Street), ☎ +44 114 272-7888. (In)famous Halal kebab shop that serves piles of salty meat. See if you can find yourself (or get yourself) on the walls packed with photographs of customers.
- Béres (The Pork Sandwich Shop), various locations, ☎ +44 114 251-7717, e-mail: email@example.com. Sheffield's very own chain of "pork sandwich shops" sells deliciously fresh baps filled with pork meat and stuffing with crackling and apple sauce on request. Also serves a selection of tasty pies. Proper northern food!
- Balti King, 216 Fulwood Road, Broomhill S10 3BB (Bus: 51, 52), ☎ +44 114 266-6655. M–Th 5PM–3AM, F Sa 5PM–4AM, Su 5PM–2AM. Long standing Indian restaurant and take-away. Popular with students, huge menu of good dishes. Has the advantage of being open very late so is perfect for a post-clubbing curry.
- Broomhill Friery, 197 Whitham Road, Broomhill, S10 2SP (Bus: 51, 52). M–F 12PM–3:15AM, Sa 4:30PM–3:15AM, Su 4:30PM–12AM. Popular chip shop with an unofficial affiliation with Sheffield actor Sean Bean. Try the Boromir Beefburger or the (Sean) Beanburger!
- Coopland's Bakery, Various locations, ☎ +44 1302 818000, fax: +44 1302 329776. Cheap as chips local bakery chain, offering a more characterful and authentically Yorkshire experience than national rival Greggs.
- Cossack Cuisine, 58 Eldon Street, S1 4GT (Just off Devonshire Green), ☎ +44 7944 093255. F, Sa 7PM–11PM. Fresh and handmade Russian food using ingredients sourced locally to Sheffield. As of August 2015, number 1 Sheffield restaurant on Tripadvisor
- The Interval, Western Bank, S10 2TN (Within the University of Sheffield's Student Union. Supertram: University). M–F 9:30AM–11PM, Sa 11AM–11PM, Su 12PM–11PM. A café-bar with a much more relaxed atmosphere than the main student bar (Bar One) downstairs, the Interval is open to the public all day and serves a good value menu of snacks and meals. Also popular for the meat and vegetarian hangover breakfasts and Sunday lunches at the weekend.
- PJ Taste, 249 Glossop Road, S10 2GZ (Supertram: University), ☎ +44 114 275-5971. M–F 8AM–4PM. A cafe great for its takeaway salad lunch boxes, usually a chicken or fish fillet served with pearl barley or couscous, plus lettuce, tomatoes, olives, feta cheese and a salsa dip.
- Spoilt For Choice, 432 Ecclesall Road, S11 8PX, ☎ +44 114 266-1666, fax: +44 114 266-3042, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. M–F 7:45AM–4:30PM; Sa 8:30AM–4:30PM; Su 09:30AM–04:30PM. Freshly prepared breakfast menu, sandwiches, soups, stews, salads, cakes, and barista-made coffee.
- Street Food Chef, Two city centre locations at 98 Pinstone Street ("Burrito Bar" - take away) and 90 Arundel Street ("Mexican Canteen" - eat in and take away).. A Mexican-themed restaurant / bar offering burritos and tacos, using locally-sourced meat and fresh ingredients.
- Taco Bell, 485 Ecclesall Road, S11 8PP / 116-118 Devonshire Street, S3 7SF. Two of currently very few Taco Bells in the UK. They may be headed for market dominance, but if they do get there it started here!
- Woody's Sandwich Bar, 657 Ecclesall Road. One of the city's best Sandwich shacks, with queues out the door at weekends. Handmade sandwiches, like the legendary 'Full Monty' breakfast sandwich to hot baguettes with fillings. Also dishes out some yummy freshly baked cookies.
- Zanzibar, 257 Fulwood Road, ☎ +44 114 268-7807. Superb African restaurant. Complicated menu and specials (especially for students on different nights of the week) but excellent food and African drums to try out.
- Baan Thai on Ecclesall Road is an excellent Thai restaurant.
- BB's, Division Street. A long standing favourite of families and students in Sheffield's city centre. A small family run business that does decent Italian food and is reasonably priced. Bring your own beer and wine.
- Café Rouge, two branches on Norfolk Street (near the Peace Gardens) and Ecclesall Road. Reliable and classy chain of French bistro-restaurants.
- Cubana, 34 Trippet Ln. Absolute diamond just off the bottom of west street. Live Cuban music most nights, large range of tapas, amazing atmosphere. Small and sexy. Great restaurant for a first date.
- Crucible Corner in Tudor Square. Traditional and modern British dishes.
- East One, in the West One plaza. Japanese canteen-style restaurant with huge stir fries and soups. Shame about the badly design and echo-ey space it occupies.
- Efes, Glossop Road. Authentic Turkish and Mediterranean cuisine. The fact that it gets frequented by some of Sheffield's Turkish residents shows the food is the 'real deal'.
- Las Iguanas West One, Fitzwilliam Street. Great party atmosphere and lovely Latin American food. Good place for a night out in Sheffield.
- Silversmiths Arundel Street, next to Hallam University. A good quality restaurant specialising in British produce. Famous for its Tuesday Pie Nights, and having been on Gordon Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares. Also serves pre-theatre menus well suited to its position near to the Crucible and Lyceum theatres.
- Sushi Express an excellent value and tasty sushi restaurant offering an extensive range of sushi, sashimi, Bento boxes and soups. All made fresh to order.
- The Old Vicarage, Ridgeway Village. Sheffield's only Michelin-starred restaurant; probably the best food in Sheffield. Expect to pay around £55 per head excluding wine.
- La Gondola, Carver Street. Highly recommended for Italian cuisine.
- Wasabisabi, London Road. Very popular Japanese restaurant; highly recommended.
- Nonna's, Ecclesall Road. Robust and authentic Italian dishes in busy surroundings. Speciality home-made pastas.
- Milestone, Ball Street, Kelham Island. A high quality, and award winning, restaurant situated within the former industrial Kelham Island area, within proximity to Shalesmoor Tram Stop. Sister restaurant on Campo Lane behind the Cathedral.
- La Vaca, Broomhill. Excellent South American-style steaks.
- Browns, St Paul's Parade. High quality food and a lively atmosphere.
- Fat Cat (on Kelham Island). Excellent Sunday meals and wide choice of real ale.
- Poacher's Arms (in the Hope Valley). Has an excellent Sunday Carvery.
The city is known for its wide variety of traditional pubs, most of which serve local ales. The nightlife is lively: there are almost 30 nightclubs, numerous bars and restaurants to suit all budgets, six theatres and three city-centre cinemas.
Sheffield is well known for its large number of pubs (Public Houses). From dark and Victorian to sleek and modern; and from traditional real-ale haven to noisy standing-room-only bar, you can easily find a pub in Sheffield to suit your taste in beer, music and company. However, most city-centre pubs are more oriented towards fast drinking students and clubbers; on West Street in particular (linking the university with the city centre) you will find many pubs and bars which during the week become busy with students and younger customers. Finding quieter pubs in which to sample something other than the usual chain-pub lager requires delving a little deeper beneath the surface.
A website which gives you in depth information about bars and clubs in Sheffield, in addition to events is SocialBeast
For the unimaginative, you'll find the usual Wetherspoons and All Bar One chain pubs, throughout the city centre serving cheap lager, hand-pulled ales and reasonably priced food in a smoke (and atmosphere) free environment.
Hybrid bar-pubs manage to maintain something of a pub atmosphere, and sell real ale at reasonable prices, while still pulling in the crowds. They are used as much by people who want a good range of beer at good prices, as by "yoofs" after a good night out. They are probably doing a good job of persuading at least some lager drinkers to switch to traditional ales.
- The Old House, 113-117 Devonshire Street. Great indy bar with the towns biggest range of imported bottled beers and a decent range of local ales. Along with very reasonably priced food, amazing cocktails, good music and a nice crowd this is a must visit in Sheffield.
- The Washington on Fitzwilliam St near Devonshire Green. Great music pub, used to be owned by Nick Banks from the band "Pulp". Relaxed atmosphere, varied DJ nights. Open till 1AM every night except Sunday till midnight. Large beer garden and smoking area at the back of the pub.
- The Frog & Parrot on Division Street is a popular pub with a long history, in days gone by offering what it claimed as the strongest ale legally served in a British pub. These days it offers food and locally-brewed real ales and often features live music.
- The Devonshire Cat on Wellington Street, just south of Devonshire Green, offers a large range of beers and ciders, including dozens of imported European beers. Also has 2 guest ciders on tap at all times. The city centre sister pub to the remoter Fat Cat on Kelham Island.
- The Bessemer (previously The Fountain) on Leopold Street is a modern, quite upmarket pub with a strong focus on its traditional English menu.
- Sheffield Tap occupies the refurbished Edwardian dining rooms at Sheffield Train station and offers a vast selection of beers from cask, tap and bottle that could rival any other Sheffield venue. Surroundings are thankfully lacking in the usually ubiquitous flat screen television. The only background music are the trains arriving and departing the station. The entrance is equally unpretentious so may be hard to find - it's at the north end of the station near the pedestrian crossing to the bus station, with another entrance straight onto platform 1.
- Porter Cottage Sharrowvale Road. Indie jukebox, normal ales but amazing atmosphere. Landlady Mandy will know your life history by the time you leave. Get in early to get a decent table.
Sheffield's real gems are the handful of surviving traditional pubs and free houses, which generally have more room to sit down, quieter (or no) music, and real hand pumped ales.
- The Brown Bear on Norfolk Street (close to the Sheffield Theatres and Winter Garden) offers what must be the cheapest beer in the city and an incredible mix of both theatre goers and local people.
- The Red Deer on Pitt Street (just off Mappin Street), is another civilised dive with good range of beers, warming fireplaces, a small garden and friendly cats.
- The Old Queen's Head on Pond Hill occupies the oldest domestic building in the city, dating from 1475 (according to some records).
- Fagans on Broad Lane is a cosy chintz-free Irish pub with regular live music.
- The Grapes (Flynns) on Trippet Lane may offer impromptu Irish or Folk music in the back room.
- The Bath Hotel on Victoria Street (just off West Street) is tiny, free of piped music and friendly.
- The Sportsman on Denby Street is popular with local customers and will probably have some rock music on the jukebox.
There are more warm and welcoming traditional pubs in Sheffield's suburbs. North-west of the city centre, in Crookes and Walkley (popular with students as places to live) are:
- The Hallamshire House on Commonside is reputedly the only pub in Sheffield still housing a full-sized snooker table.
- The Walkley Cottage on Bole Hill Road is friendly with good range of beer and good food.
- Noah's Ark on Crookes has a good atmosphere and mix of students and locals.
- The Freedom House has two halves: a lively "pool table-and-lager" side, and a quieter "grandmother's living room" side.
- The Nottingham House or "The Notty" as it is better known has recently re-opened after an extensive refurbishment. Catering for locals,visitors and students alike, it really is a pub worth a visit. Home-made pies are a speciality and real ales are aplenty. Occasional live music on Thursday nights with acts from near and far. Pool table is very good value at 50p.
- The Cobden View Situated on Cobden View Rd near Crookes, this small and charming independent pub serves great local ales until approx. 1AM most nights, and is always bursting with atmosphere and friendly locals.
Real ale fans from great distances come to "do" the real ale trail of Sheffield's Upper Don Valley, a route stretching from near the city centre almost to Hillsborough. The trail calls at:
- The Kelham Island Tavern has won best Pub in Britain from Camra
- The Fat Cat, hidden away on Alma Street, also a great stop for Sunday lunch.
- The Wellington (used to be known as Cask and Cutler) on Henry Street.
- The Gardeners Rest on Neepsend Lane (recently re-opened following the great flood of 2007).
- Hillsborough Hotel A welcoming pub with a brewery underneath and hotel rooms above.
- The New Barrack Tavern, A pub owned by Castle Rock and full of Character.
- The Harlequin, The latest addition to The Ale Trail, more open plan and possibly less off putting to people who aren't used to real ale pubs than the others might seem.
The trail roughly parallels the tram route from the city centre to Hillsborough, so getting there and back is easy. All these pubs have a huge range of British draught real ales (some brewed by the pub) and most have a selection of bottle-conditioned beers from continental Europe (especially Belgium).
- The Broadfield on Abbeydale Road in Nether Edge. A total refurb in December 2011 has finally seen this pub reach its full potential. The pub is now a decent size and serves a huge range of local (and further afield) cask ales, home-made pies and sausages, and stocks a whisky from every distillery in Scotland. Forget the City centre and head out to the suburbs!
- The Sheaf View on Gleadless Road is a real ale hotspot. Famous for serving the south side of Sheffield with the local breweries and other guest ales with knowledgeable bar staff. Has a reputation for friendly Sheffield folk to relax there after hiking and climbing in The Peak. So called because of possible view of the Sheaf River although now obstructed by newer buildings.
Visiting Sheffield, you might be led to believe that students go out every day of the week. With some 55 000 university students this is hardly surprising. These are some of the more popular pubs.
- The Common Room Devonshire Street. Large pool/sports bar. 12 American pool tables. Cheap drinks weekdays between 5 and 8 and a good cocktail menu.
- Forum Devonshire Street. Unique trendy café/bar (and shops) open late every night. Amazing outdoor patio on the Devonshire Green.
- Bungalows & Bears (formerly the Central fire station) Division Street. Retro-chic bar with fantastic atmosphere, amazing music and great veggie food menu. 2nd hand "retro" clothing market on a Sunday. Free board games (e.g., Tequila Jenga). Frequented by the Arctic Monkeys, trendies and students alike.
- The Green Room Division Street. Compact bar, great range of bottled beers, great live indie music on a Wednesday.
- The Wick at Both Ends West Street. Relaxed bar with comfy seating, and a fantastic drinks selection including cocktails served in watering cans. Popular with those avoiding the student pub crawls.
- Varsity West Street / Ecclesall Road. Standard studenty chain bar, complete with inflatable sheep machines in the toilets.
- Revolution West:one. Standard entry in the popular vodka bar chain. Popular with "orange" good-looking people but don't let that put you off, good range of drinks and affordable food menu by day. Decent DJ sets and adjoining pool room.
- Yates Division Street. Poor-performer (even for a chain bar). Avoid.
- Crystal Carver Street. Expensive bar, amazing décor. Anti-student (except Wednesdays)
- Ask Barkers pool. Student-friendly during week, tacky by weekend.
- The Cutler Carver Street. Local choice, no students.
- Corner house Carver Street. (Aka City Bar) good seating, standard drinks.
- Bar One Glossop Road, near the University tram stop. The main bar of the University of Sheffield Student Union, which is understandably always full of students, and which is also one of the most profitable union bars anywhere in the country. In the evenings you will need a Sheffield student card (or a friend who has one to sign you in) to gain admission. Cheapest drinks on a Sunday. Large, cheap, pool room. Also serves inexpensive, wholesome food (not everything comes with chips!)
- Interval Glossop Road, near the University tram stop. The second bar of the University of Sheffield Student Union, offering a more cosmopolitan atmosphere with local real ales, wine and food.
- The Hubs Inside Sheffield Hallam Union (the former National Centre for Popular Music) so easy to find. It looks like a big, silver, flying spaceship, close to the train station. Not as big or impressive on the inside as it is on the outside, a relatively small union bar.
- Cavendish West Street (locally referred to as 'The Chavendish'). A scream/yellowcard bar (you get discounted drinks if you buy or have a friend with a yellowcard, which costs £1 to NUS card holders). Serves decent food; a cheap student pub/bar with pool tables.
- The York Broomhill. Totally re-invented in September 2010, now an amazing pub serving great food and a decent range of local real ales.
- Fox and Duck Broomhill. An off-campus pub owned by the University of Sheffield Student Union but frequented by a more mixed crowd.
- The Harley on Glossop Road by the University tram stop. Open Late til 4AM on event nights. Plays host to cutting edge live music and varied club nights.
- Reflex West Street (near City Hall tram stop). More a free and cheesy club with 70s and 80s music than a bar.
- Walkabout West Street, near City Hall tram stop. Australia themed bar. Very popular, fairly cheap, but can get a bit claustrophobic. Better as calling point on a pub crawl than a place for staying in.
- Revolución de Cuba, Mappin St. Relaxed cocktail bar which also serves hispanic food from its 'Cantina'. Wednesday night is swing night, with a live band and dancing.
- Gay bars There are a small number of gay bars, clubs and gay-nights, whose locations and names change on a regular basis. Consult Yorkshire's gay paper Shout! for the latest listing.
Clubs & Live Venues
Unlike Sheffield's dense strip of student bars along West Street, the city's night clubs are more spread out around the city centre, especially in the former industrial buildings. The most well known are:
- Sheffield O2 Academy, Arundel Gate. Located at the very centre of the City, the venue offers both live music from popular artists and club nights, notably 'Propaganda' on Fridays - the biggest Indie night in the United Kingdom. Other regular events include 'Brighton Beach' (11PM-3:30AM) on the first Saturday of every month and 'Electrosexual'(10PM-5AM) a week later.
- The Leadmill Leadmill Road, close to Sheffield station and Sheffield Hallam University. A Sheffield institution made famous by its live music line-up. Live gigs most nights of the week which are immediately followed by club nights. Concert-goers get free entry to the club night after their show. Indie night on a Saturday, with relatively cheap drinks for a nightclub.
- Plug (formerly .Zero). Smart club, open late (6AM on Fridays and Saturdays) and popular on a Thursday night (when huge queues are to be expected). Nights span anything from raves to live music.
- Corporation Milton Street. A dirty rock club with dirty cheap vodka, just the way the locals like it. There's 'Skool Disco' every Wednesday night (free admission in school uniform) and metal/goth on Saturdays. Fridays is skate and metal downstairs and indie upstairs. Mondays are popular with the student crowd, playing music everyone seems to know.
- Sheffield Hallam University Student's Union Paternoster Row, this unusually shaped steel building is a bar downstairs and a club upstairs with four rooms playing different music genres. Along with much of the union building, this is closed for refurbishment until September 2013.
- Foundry and Fusion Western Bank (University of Sheffield Students' Union). A fiercely active union night club that packs in students from Tue-Sat. The Tuesday Club is a surprisingly pricey hip-hop and drum & bass night that pulls in many big names. Roar on Wednesday night is big on cheap alcopops and inebriated sports teams. Friday is Space in the Octagon, a "chart" night, while visiting club nights and Climax, South Yorkshire's biggest gay club rotate monthly in the Fusion/Foundry. Saturdays is Pop Tarts, hosting 2 rooms (one is 60s, 70s and "rock and roll", the other 80s, 90s and 00s).
- DQ Fitzwilliam Street. Holding legendary clubnights such as 'Threads'. Open late every night, notable for its "afterparty" till 4AM after HedKandi.
- Sheffield City Hall. The impressive 1930s City Hall was recently refurbished and is home to many concerts, performances and travelling shows and is in the elegant Barkers Pool in the city centre which is home to Sheffield's cenotaph. Nearest Supertram: City Hall (perhaps unsurprisingly).
- Novotel, 50 Arundel Gate (Behind the Winter Gardens), ☎ +44 113 396-9005, e-mail: H1348@accor.com. WiFi available. Prices vary from £75-119.
- Mercure St. Pauls Hotel, 119 Norfolk St (Between the Winter Gardens and Peace Gardens), ☎ +44 113 396-9005, e-mail: H1348@accor.com. Valet parking. WiFi available. From £64.
- Holiday Inn Victoria Hall, Victoria Station Rd, ☎ +44 114 276-8822, e-mail: email@example.com. Hall tour at request. From £79.
- Holiday Inn Express, Blonk St, ☎ +44 871 423 4942, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 2PM, check-out: 12PM. From £59.
- Hilton Hotel, Victoria Quays, Furnival Rd, ☎ +44 114 252-5500. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: 12PM. From £65.
- Jurys Inn Hotel, 119 Eyre St (Off the Moor roundabout), ☎ +44 114 291-2222. Costa Coffee bar. From £61.
- Best Western Cutlers Hotel, George Street, Heart of the City, ☎ +44 114 273-9939, e-mail: email@example.com. Free WiFi. From £43.
- Copthorne Hotel, Bramall Ln (Located at the Sheffield United F.C. stadium), ☎ +44 114 252-5480. Free car parking. Wi-Fi available. From £30 (breakfast £15.00).
- Leopold Hotel, Leopold Square / Leopold St, ☎ +44 114 252-4000. £70 - £150.
- The Sheffield Metropolitan Hotel (Sheffield Met), Blonk Street (From junction 33 M1 follow Parkway to Park Square roundabout, hotel is off to the right), ☎ +44 114 220-4000, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 12 noon. From £50.00 room.
- Etap Hotel Sheffield Arena, 298 Attercliffe Common. WiFi available. From £35 (breakfast £2.95).
- Nether Edge Hotel, 21-23 Montgomery Rd, Nether Edge (less than a mile SSW of the city centre). Check-in: 2PM, check-out: 10AM. From about £39 including breakfast.
- Corner House, Westbourne Rd, ☎ +44 114 266-0346, e-mail: email@example.com. Available for periods of between 1 week to 6 months. Wi-Fi, fully equipped shared kitchen, tv, towels, shampoo, breakfast included. £150 per week, £160 for two persons.
- Kenwood Hall, Kenwood Road, ☎ +44 1142 583811, fax: +44 1142 554744, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 2PM, check-out: 11AM. A former country hall now situated in the pretty Edwardian suburb of Nether Edge.
As with the rest of the UK, in any emergency call 999 or 112 and ask for Ambulance, Fire or Police when connected.
All central areas or main shopping suburbs are perfectly safe during the day. After hours, some peripheral parts of the city centre may seem a little quiet and lonely, but any well-lit street with plenty of people about will is as safe as any city centre in the UK if the usual precautions are taken. Some outer neighbourhoods are best avoided, but as a traveller, you will almost certainly never visit them anyway.
In a medical emergency, dial 999 or 112.
Hospitals and clinics
Although there are many hospitals in clinics in Sheffield, the following four are most likely to be of use to the sickly traveller:
- Northern General Hospital, Herries Rd, S5 7AU, ☎ +44 114 243-4343. The largest hospital in Sheffield, which hosts the city's Accident & Emergency department for adults
- Sheffield Children's Hospital, Western Bank, S10 2TH, ☎ +44 114 271-7000, e-mail: email@example.com. Provides a range of general and specialist services for children and babies, including an Accident and Emergency department
- Sheffield City Walk-In Centre / GP Health Centre, Rockingham House, 75 Broad Lane, S1 3PB, ☎ +44 114 241-2700. Open every day 8AM–10PM. Provides treatment without appointment for minor illnesses and injuries, assessment by an experienced NHS nurse. Also offers advice on how to stay healthy, and information on out-of-hours GP and dental services, local pharmacy services and other local health services.
- Sheffield Central Sexual Health Clinic, 1 Mulberry Street, S1 2PJ, ☎ +44 114 226-8888. M, Tu, W, F 8:30AM–12PM, 1:30PM–3PM; Th 10:30AM–12PM, 1:30PM–3PM. Sheffield's main sexual health centre, with sexual health testing and treatment and contraceptive services, as well as irritating French-style opening hours.
- Sheffield Tourist Information Centre, Surrey St, S1 (Located next to the Winter Gardens.), ☎ +44 114 221-1900, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. M–F 9:30AM–5PM, Sa 9:30AM–4PM.
- Sheffield City Council: the city's local authority and government
- Travel South Yorkshire: all public transport information for Sheffield and South Yorkshire
- Our Favourite Places: a great guide to Sheffield's culture, cuisine and events, written by Sheffielders who love their city.
- Leeds the other big Yorkshire city, only an hour away by train/coach/car, handy for the Yorkshire Dales.
- Manchester, often known as England's 'second city' (as is Birmingham), is by far the largest city in northern England and forms a metropolis of 2.6 million people. It is a vibrant shopping and cultural hub. Around 1 1/2 hours journey by car and an hour by train, both journeys passing through the scenic views of the Peak District.
- Hull, a 700-year-old major port city and regional capital of East Yorkshire and the Humber. Many free museums in the cobbled old town, and the most successful millennium project in the country with the spectacular aquarium, The Deep.
The Peak District is a beautiful national park of moors, stone-walled green hills and sheep-filled fields crossed by paths for ramblers, hillside tracks and country lanes for cyclists. There is a network of tiny hamlets, small villages, country churches, and market towns. All the settlements have their own charm and history, and nearly all have at least one pub for lunch and beer, or a tea shop for afternoon tea and cakes.
Sheffield is the perfect city base to explore the Peak District, not only because it is the closest city to the northern half of "The Peak" (some of the national park lies within the city boundary) but also because bus and train links from Sheffield into the Peak are excellent for such rural services. Popular services run back to Sheffield until 11PM, making it feasible for Sheffielders and visitors to put a day's hard work or shopping behind them for a long summer's evening "walking in the Peak". The popularity of the Peak as a destination for Sheffielders at leisure is underlined by the fact that many routes provide a better service at weekends, particularly on Sunday, than during the week - making a full day in the fresh air very easy to arrange.
Easy trips into The Peak
- The Fox House pub is well-served with daytime and evening buses from Sheffield (many routes meet here), and it is only a very short drive out of town. It is situated just where the view of the Peak District opens up as you come over the hill from Sheffield, so you can walk along the high bits without having to climb up there! It is a great place to have a drink before going walking/running/climbing in some great terrain, and to return to for a meal and a drink while waiting for your bus back.
- Hathersage and Grindleford are very close to Sheffield on the "Hope Valley" train line. Hathersage is a good place to start for a walk along Stanage Edge, a dramatic ridge with superb views over two counties and Sheffield itself. One evening, get a return ticket to Hathersage for about £3.50, and walk from Grindleford Station to Hathersage Church (Little John's grave!) along the riverside path. Durationː 1 to 2 hours, plus time in the country pubs at both ends. If you get an early enough train you can eat at the Grindleford Station Café, which is famous for huge mugs of tea, filling food, and bossy notices everywhere).
- Edale is a pretty village at the head of a beautiful valley, overlooked by the famous Kinder Scout and Mam Tor. There is one pub in the centre of the village at the start of the Pennine Way, and another by the railway station where you can drink until closing time (11PM) to catch the train back to Sheffield - Hope Valley line, 40 minutes from Sheffield.
- Castleton is on the other side of Mam Tor from Edale and so is a short, but steep walk from the latter village with beautiful views along the way. It is home to the Blue John mine as well as four major caves/caverns which tourists can visit. Each has a very different feel, from the natural splendour of Peak Cavern to the disconcerting underground river trip and well-rehearsed guide's patter of Speedwell. Castleton has an excellent bus service, and though not directly on the Hope Valley line, train tickets are accepted on the bus between Castleton and Hope Station.
- Eyam (pronounced "Eem") village comes with a fascinating history and a sad but brave story: it chose to quarantine itself when plague struck in the 17th century. Whole families died, but the plague did not spread beyond its parish bounds. The stone where food was deposited, in exchange for money left in vinegar-filled holes can still be seen. There is a museum detailing this and the rest of the village's history, and Eyam Hall is an interesting house to visit.
- Bakewell is gentle and pretty. It is good for riverside strolls, country shopping, and spending all day in tea shops trying out the rival versions of "Real", "Genuine", "Proper", "Original", etc. etc. Bakewell tarts and puddings. Chatsworth House and Haddon Hall are nearby for "how-the-rich-lived"-buffs and history-buffs respectively.
- "Sheffield's Lake District" is a rather fanciful name which has never really stuck for the Bradfield Valley just north of the city centre. True, the moors, green hills, villages, and country pubs really are very beautiful, and make for lovely walks, rides, and drives but it has to be admitted that there is a distinct lack of mountains (unlike Cumbria) and that the "lakes" are really reservoirs. The area really is a "secret"; it can be a surprise to first-time visitors even from the south of Sheffield, especially when they realise that this area is not only officially part of Sheffield, but that it is also in the Peak District. It is very well served (right until pub closing time) by a circular bus route from Hillsborough Interchange which has connections to the tram from the city centre: ask for Upper Bradfield, Lower Bradfield, or Dungworth.
- Matlock (shops), Matlock Bath (riverside walks, an inland "seaside prom", and a cable car), and Cromford (Arkwright's Mill, one of the very the first factories in the world!) are closer to Chesterfield, but are easily reached by car from Sheffield.
Other country areas
- The South Pennines will look familiar to anyone who has seen "Last of the Summer Wine". Holmfirth is 40 minutes drive or bus on Sundays, for anyone who wants to see Compo's café, which is actually an excellent sit down chippy, or Nora Batty's step, or just the stone buildings of Holmfirth set in a beautiful green valley surrounded by rolling hills.
- The Dukeries of north Nottinghamshire is an area of country parks and stately homes.