Last night at the Academy of Urbanism Awards Kelham Island won the award for being the greatest neighbourhood in the UK.
Beating some incredible areas like Ancoats and Hackney Wick to the title is no mean feat. It’s a testament to all the hard work of community groups, like Kelham Island Community Alliance, and the talent of phenomenal artists from the Kelham Island Arts Collective, working on projects like KurbArt, that this wonderful place is now a powerhouse of creativity.
But it wasn't always that way – scarcely a decade ago decaying mills lay abandoned. We've been privileged to see the area's transformation.
Over the past five years, we've been hard at work restoring some of Sheffield's finest industrial heritage. It's come a long way over the last five years. Sometimes, even we forget the scale of the transformation.
Here's a glimpse of what the Little Kelham site looked like when we first started.
This is Green Lane Works back in 2012:
And here is Eagle works at the same time, looking a tad worse for wear:
The restoration of the Green Lane Works iconic clock tower was finished last year, whilst the ambitious Eagle Works restoration was completed this autumn. These stunning buildings, combined with our bold new designs for sustainable homes have played a huge part in the spectacular revival that has made Kelham Island what it is today.
Here’s Green Lane Works Clocktower now it has been restored:
This image shows Eagle Works, now restored to being a place where ideas are made.
The story of Kelham Island is more than just the buildings though. It's the area's talented and endlessly creative people that have taken these spaces and made them into the places we love. Be it a real ale pub, an art gallery, a Scandinavian restaurant or a friendly bar with an electric atmosphere, these wonderful places make Kelham Island a fantastic place to live.
We were just one part of community-wide effort to turn Kelham Island into what it is today: the UK's greatest neighbourhood. But it was a part we're endlessly proud to play.