Concrete Jungle – love it or hate it? Park Hill Flats, Sheffield

Last Saturday I went on my first Instameet, organised by the lovely Zoey Breuer, a friend of a friend.

We met at Sheffield Train Station.

Lots of faces I recognised but couldn’t quite place. That’s IG for you. Enough reason to atleast post one ‘unfiltered’ selfie…you never know when you may bump into some of your IG chums and you want them to recognise you!

Introductions made off we trotted the short distance up and over the train-tracks to Park Hill Flats.

Just a little bit of back ground info –
Park Hill flats were constructed during the period 1957 – 1961 to rehouse families during the post-war period. In order to keep some sort of community spirit alive neighbours were re-housed next-door to each other and old street names re-used.

During the 1980’s however the flats became less appealing and people started to leave. With unemployment rising it became a place nobody wanted to live. Empty flats, boarded up shops and public houses that attracted the ‘wrong sort’. The dark alleyways made it easy for muggings and crime flourished. It became a no -go area.

In 1998 they were given Grade II listed building status.

In 2006 local lads the Arctic Monkeys shot the video for ‘The View from the Afternoon ‘ in and around Park Hill Flats.

The flats are currently under renovation. The first stage has been completed but the majority still remain empty and derelict (which they have been for as long as I can remember)

These empty flats are the ones that we went for a wander around.

Grey with splashes of colour courtesy of the graffiti. Eerie, still and ever so slightly sad. I wouldn’t have wanted to have been there alone, or as night started to descend. If you’ve ever seen the film “Community” you’ll know why. Spooky Stuff!

Often referred too as the ‘blot’ on the landscape, Sheffield is split into 2 camps.

It’s association with crime and drug-taking has given the area a bad name. For most, its not a desirable place to live.

Others argue that it’s part and parcel of Sheffield’s history and for them it hold’s fond memories.

Whatever side you sit on it is a fascinating area to ‘take in’.

Keen amateur photographers, like myself, will love the angles and shapes and flourish trying to capture and embrace the sense of ‘loss and emptiness’

All the photos taken below were on my Sony Xperia mobile phone.

Unfortunately I lost the battery for my ‘big camera’ (DSLR) on the way there. (I’ve still not found it?!)

To say I was gutted was an under statement. That said I think I got some pretty decent shots…

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So what do you think, should the flats stay or should they have been demolished?

I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Also if you’d like to see more photos taken on the day please go to #instameetsheffield241015 on instagram.

Sheffield has some really talented photographer’s.

Until next time, Tracey

6 thoughts on “Concrete Jungle – love it or hate it? Park Hill Flats, Sheffield

  1. ZoeB says:

    I love them ! I was the first non resident child to attend the nursery school in the complex . Run by Miss Cole of the Cole Brothers family. I loved it but remember later on mum telling me to always walk UNDER the walkways because tellys had been thrown off the balconies! A friend bought the newly done up flat that she had been brought up in.

    • lizandtracey says:

      Hi zoe,
      Thanks for the comment, always appreciate them.
      I actually published this before it was finished. I didn’t realise until now. I’ve got lots of photo, which I’ll.post tomorrow. Sorry for the confusion. Tv’s been thrown over the balcony!! These are the type of stories I’ve been reading today..Tracey xx

  2. Postcard Cafe says:

    I enjoyed seeing your photographs of the flats – thanks for sharing.
    You may be interested in the retrospective of images from Park Hill that I have been running for the last few weeks. They are on my Little Bits of Sheffield WordPress site here: https://steelcitystatic.wordpress.com
    The retrospective borrows the “This is England” title because parts of the recent TV series was filmed at the flats.
    Also if you head to my other WordPress site (Postcard Cafe) on the following link you will find a link to a Radio 4 programme from 2012 which investigates the “I love you will u marry me” graffiti on one of the walkways. It is a fascinating 30 minutes.
    https://postcardcafe.wordpress.com/2012/01/24/the-i-love-you-bridge-listen-to-the-story-behind-the-words/
    Best wishes, Mr Cafe 🙂

    • lizandtracey says:

      Hello Mr Cafe,
      I headed straight over last night and had a look at your website. Some great images.
      I’m also now following you , as I love keeping upto date with all things Sheffield. Thank you for popping over and for leaving a comment. I always love reading any comments, Tracey 🙂

      • Postcard Cafe says:

        Thanks for taking time to follow me. I’ve a few more Park Hill Images to go up and then some other interesting older cityscape images from Sheffield. My Postcard Cafe site is also generally images from Sheffield although not exclusively so. I hope you manage to listen to the Radio 4 programme about the “I love you” bridge at Park Hill. It was made by a local woman who lives in Nether Edge and she obviously took time to do quite a bit of research.
        There are quite a few interesting wordpress blog sites from people in Sheffield. I will keep an eye on yours to see where you take it 🙂
        Best wishes
        Mr C

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