The Best Buildings in Sheffield, England – #5

Posted by // December 24th, 2012 // Architecture No Comments »

Sheffield is an English city of 552,700 people located in South Yorkshire. It was traditionally known as a global steel hub but the industry declined dramatically towards the late twentieth century. Since then the city has redeveloped and diversified its economy with strong growth in technology, professional services and retail. There is also a large focus on further education with over fifty-thousand students attending the two local universities.

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It is situated in an amphitheatre and has grown across seven hills (the English equivalent of Rome if you will..) which allows for impressive views across the city. Because of its many sloped areas over half of Sheffield is green space and there are over two million tress dotted around Sheffield. This means that there are more trees per person than in any other city in Europe. Sheffield’s varied economic history has led to it becoming home to a wide range of architectural styles and distinctive buildings. Throughout this week we will count down our top five favourites in the city. Today we start with Sheffield City Hall.

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Sheffield City Hall opened in 1932 and is a Grade II* listed building (meaning it cannot be demolished or changed without special permission). Within the building is a number of facilities including a 2,000 seat auditorium, 500 person capacity hall and ballroom. Unsurprisingly given its age the venue has hosted a number of iconic musicians including The Beatles and Jimi Hendrix.

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The building was originally designed in 1920 but its construction was delayed for a number of years due to lack of funds. It was designed by Emanuel Vincent Harris who was responsible for a number of neo-classically inspired buildings including the Manchester Central Library and Leeds Civic Hall. It is located in Barker’s Pool, a square in the city centre which is also home to a WWI memorial which predates the City Hall.

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