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-Raz-

UK Park Hill, Sheffield - December 2015

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Park Hill was the first post-second world war redevelopment scheme in Sheffield, built on a site consisting of the existing ‘back-to-back’ housing, tenement buildings, waste ground and a maze of alleyways. In the 1930s it was known by local people as ‘Little Chicago’ because of the levels of violent crime there. As there was no real sewerage system, there were typhus and cholera outbreaks; having only one standpipe per hundred people didn’t help either. In the 19th century, the Park area housed the worst slums in Sheffield.

 

Clearance started in the 1930s, paused for the second world war, but resumed shortly afterwards, when the young Sheffield city council architects Ivor Smith and Jack Lynn began work in 1945, designing a radical scheme to rehouse the local community. Park Hill was the first successful post-second world war slum clearance scheme of an entire community in Britain.

 

In 1957 the construction started, and when it was completed in 1961 it was hailed as the most ambitious inner-city development of its time. Inspired partly by Le Corbusier, the ‘deck access scheme’ was seen as revolutionary. Its style was known as brutalism, and the concept described as ‘streets in the sky’, where milk floats would trundle along broad decks, stopping at front doors, as if they were in a normal street.

 

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On 16 June 1961, Park Hill was officially opened by Hugh Gaitskell, the leader of the Opposition. So began the saga of Park Hill, where families were re-homed next to their neighbours to maintain a strong sense of community, and old street names were re-used. Park Hill was designed so that the roof line stays level, even though it’s sited on a steep slope. At the site’s lowest point the flats are 13 storeys high, and at the highest point just 4 storeys. Twelve caretakers lived on site, on 24-hour call, ready to tackle any jobs that needed doing.

 

Slowly, problems became apparent. By the 1980s, unemployment was rising as the local steel industry collapsed, Park Hill had descended into dilapidation and was no longer a place people wanted to live in. Boarded up pubs, burned out cars, rubbish, graffiti, it became a ‘no go’ area. The maze of alleys and walkways made it a perfect place for muggings; there were also problems with drugs, poor noise insulation, and even tales of air rifle snipers shooting at kids in the school playground. The spirit and traditions of the pre-war communities faded away, as the original residents aged and eventually died.

 

In 1998 the controversial decision was taken to make Park Hill a Grade II listed building, the largest in Europe. Developers Urban Splash bought the site to turn it into flats and business units. One section has already been renovated

 

 

 

Sorry If I bored you all to death with the history if any of you bothered to read it ;) It is just a block of flats after all but one with quite a lot of history, there is countless forums with ex residents who share some pretty interesting stories!

 

Amazingly its took us nearly a year to get in here every time we got close something got in our way so it was nice to finally get up on the roof!

 

Visited with Matt, Fat Panda, Rotten wood and 2 none members (tour bus) 

 

 

some are blurry due to my lens :mad:

 

 

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“Clare Middleton I Love You Will U Marry Me”. It was done by a man called Jason in April 2001. The neon (and the editing) was added later by Urban Splash, the company restoring the flats. Sadly, the couple never did marry, and Ms Middleton died in March 2007.

 

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The view is up here is awesome!

 

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if anyone's interested I also made a video too! 

 

 

 

God knows how I've managed such a long and pic heavy report on this place, cheers for looking :)

Edited by -Raz-

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Cool stuff mate - Didnt know that was the origin of the neon but thats a heart breaker :sad:

 

Your video is cool too :thumb

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11 hours ago, The_Raw said:

Fucking love this mate, reminds me of the Heygate estate in London which is now demolished (http://www.oblivionstate.com/forum/topic/6551-the-heygate-estate-visited-may-to-july-2013-london-february-2014/#comment-30277)

 

In fact this has just reminded me there's a new derp council estate I need to check out :D

 

:comp:

 

 

That place looks equally as grim as park hill! :D

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