is the one time site of a Sheffield crucible steelworks.
once the screech of machinery and the heat of the furnaces dominated
the hamlet, nowadays Abbeydale serves a very different purpose.
exists as a living history museum where the set up and attractions
approximate the feel of a traditional steel works.
is a dam, a working water wheel, a woodland habitat and a number
of informative and insightful buildings each filled with the renovated
remains of machines that were finally abandoned upon the site’s
closure in 1933.
Trust's Education Officer, Anne Marie Sandos, in Victorian clothing
bad for a place which is only a short bus ride from Sheffield city
site now primarily serves an educational purpose for the region's
children, and if the school party who were there at the same time
as me were representative, then fun is encouraged equally alongside
deal of work has been carried out here to ensure the stuffy image
of museums and industry is well and truly an anachronism; with CD
ROMs, an interactive gallery and a particularly innovative audio
tour all available to visitors there is a strong sense of the contemporary.
might see a traction engine in action!
some of the workshops are currently in use by small businesses while
others are available for rent; this is remarkable for a site that’s
records date back to the 18th century.
of industry, or those with a casual interest need not be deterred
though. While much of Abbeydale is obviously devoted to kids there
are also a number of portfolios which detail both the processes
and the people involved in steel making.
of this, on top of the wonderful view provided by the dam and woodland,
mean that it feels not only that one has been taken back in time
but also to a different part of the world (it is hard to believe
that the noise and bustle of the city is only 20 minutes away).
farm and industrial tools are on display
to Abbeydale is certainly worthwhile. Not only is it culturally
and environmentally important but it also provides a genuinely fascinating
insight into the area’s past.
museum is open to the public this year until Sunday 6 October 2002.
other times, Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet is open to pre-booked groups.