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2024: New openings and developments

To kickstart the new year, Exposed editor Joe Food gives a roundup of the past 12 months as we prepare for 2024, a year on track to be filled with growth, prosperity and a whole host of new openings for the steel city.

To me, 2023 felt like Sheffield was beginning to shift up through the gears. Things naturally felt stiff and cautious for a while in the wake of the pandemic, and we sadly lost some fantastic businesses during an unfathomably challenging period. But over the previous 12 months, we’ve loosened up, puffed out our chests and – dare I say – an air of optimism has taken hold as the much-lauded Heart of the City project takes shape.

Development work in a major city centre is a tricky one. The cranes, construction fences and scaffolding aren’t nice to look at of course. But what you sacrifice in temporary aesthetic appeal, you gain back ten-fold when the job is done. We’ve already had a flavour of the potential benefits it can bring with unquestionably successful regeneration of places like Furnival Gate, Pounds Park and Orchard Square.

Pounds Park

Pounds Park, one of last year’s key new developments helping to rejuvenate the city centre

A mere taster of things to come, then, and 2024 looks ready to serve up the tantalising main course. Highlights on this year’s menu include a 27,000 sq ft food hall meets community hub, a lovingly renovated listed building housing the city’s finest makers, and a swanky flagship hotel overlooking the Peace Gardens.

As well as shiny new buildings and venues to explore, there’s plenty else to get excited about in terms of the usual mix of top-notch events and cultural gatherings that keep Sheffield turning. We’ve rounded up a few dates that are set firmly in our diaries – and should really be in yours too!

Onwards and upwards, eh? Let’s make 2024 the year Sheffield truly finds its voice. From brand-new clothing stores to historic buildings reimagined as live venues, here’s what we’re getting excited about this year!

NEW BUSINESSES!

yards store

Planed design for the new Yards Store shopfront

While the final details are being ironed out, we can share that the beginning of the year is poised to see numerous retail, leisure and food & drink businesses arrive at the Heart of the City. These additions will a number of recently revealed operators, including the leading independent menswear retailer Yards Store, Swedish fashion brand Fjällräven and the esteemed Sheffield artist Pete McKee, who is preparing to open a shop at Leah’s Yard.

CAMBRIDGE STREET COLLECTIVE 

Cambridge Street Collective

Proposed design for Cambridge Street Collective foodhall

Sheffield’s food scene is set to receive a huge boost with Cambridge Street Collective, a 27,000 sq ft food hall under construction at the intersection of Cambridge Street and Wellington Street in the city centre. Spearheaded by Blend Family, the brains behind the city’s renowned food and drink venue Cutlery Works, the new venture aims to become a cultural epicentre within the Heart of the City development.

Cutlery Works, currently the North of England’s largest independent food hall, has played a pivotal role in the revitalisation of Kelham Island and Neepsend, featuring 14 vendors across two floors in its 15,000 sq ft space. Now, Blend Family is in the final stages of fitting out Cambridge Street Collective, envisioning a dynamic space spread over three floors, housing more than 24 kitchens, a cookery school and a rooftop bar.

Hoping to open for spring/summertime, Matt Bigland, co-founder of Blend Family, has emphasised the importance of curating a diverse selection of kitchens that embrace authentic and traditional cooking. The aim is to bridge culinary gaps, inviting people to explore and enjoy a variety of cuisines without the constraints of a traditional restaurant setting.

LEAH’S YARD

Leah's Yard's

Leah’s Yard’s first tenant Pete McKee celebrating the work being done on the historic site

Things are progressing nicely with the revival of Sheffield’s historic Leah’s Yard on Cambridge Street. The building itself was topped out (the extension reached its highest point) in September 2023 and in November they announced renowned local artist Pete McKee as the first official tenant.

The Grade II* listed building, which previously housed some of Sheffield’s ‘Little Mesters’ workshops, was removed from Historic England’s ‘Building at Risk’ register last year following significant structural renovations. Further efforts include the construction of an additional extension to enhance public accessibility and provide additional commercial space.

Scheduled to open in spring/summer this year, approximately 20 independent working studios will occupy the first and second floors, reviving the building’s rich heritage of craftsmanship and innovation. Additionally, the boutique retail outlets will showcase local makers, creators and traders selling a range of wares.

RADISSON BLU

Radisson Blu hotel

Designs for the new Radisson Blu hotel looking out over the Peace Gardens in the city centre

The eight-story flagship Radisson Blu development site is scheduled to open by the end of summer. Nestled between Burgess Street and Pinstone Street, the 154-room high-end hotel will intergrate a contemporary design with the preserved Victorian façade along Pinstone Street.

The hope is Radisson Blu’s arrival will elevate Sheffield’s business and leisure profile, contributing to the city centre’s appeal for new business opportunities. Plans for the hotel also include an upscale rooftop bar and terrace offering panoramic views of the Peace Gardens, contributing to the city’s social scene.

BETHEL CHAPEL

Bethel Chapel

Imagined designs for the transformation of the Bethel Chapel building, which was formerly the John Lewis toyshop

The historic 15,000 sq ft Bethel Chapel building on Cambridge Street, dating back to the 1800s and formerly John Lewis toyshop, is undergoing refurbishment to join Sheffield’s vibrant live music and performance spaces.

Featuring a ground-floor live entertainment space, a first-floor bar and café area, and an external roof terrace and balcony on the top floor, it promises to be ideal for a variety of events and goings-on. Additionally, a new outdoor space at the rear will provide seating areas for both Bethel Chapel and the adjoining Cambridge Street Collective.

The Council and Queensberry are actively seeking an exceptional operator to lease the building, tasked with curating live music, comedy, and other arts events in the venue. We can’t imagine it’ll be long before the vacancy is filled.

CANNON BREWERY

Cannon Brewery

Capital&Centric’s plans to transform a derelict site in Neepsend into a thriving space to live, work and relax

Cannon Brewery is part of social impact developers Capital&Centric’s plans to deliver a new urban district in Sheffield’s Neepsend area. Earlier this year, the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority Board allocated £11.67m to underpin transformation of the former Cannon Brewery, a sprawling derelict site off Neepsend Lane where the last pints were poured in the 90s.

Capital&Centric say they are planning a design-led district – with hundreds of new homes, workplaces and spaces for shops, delis and café-bars with a heavy focus on independents. Their vision also includes a lush, green urban park surrounding the existing water tower on site, as well as a new public square surrounded by shops and cafes, with spaces for pop-up events.

The plan is to retain some of the most interesting existing buildings on site and combine with standout new builds. It’s anticipated that enabling works and remediation will start in 2024, with the team working up more detailed plans for the site.

SHEFFIELD FC X SHEFFIELD EAGLES

Sheffield FC X Sheffield Eagles

Plans for the collaborative venture from Sheffield FC and Sheffield Eagles with will encompass a variety of sporting spaces, a community sports hall and a football museum

In late 2023, Sheffield FC, recognised as the World’s First football club, and Sheffield Eagles, the city’s professional rugby league club, jointly revealed detailed plans for a 5,000-seater stadium at the former Sheffield Transport Sports Club site in Meadowhead. This collaborative venture envisions a multifaceted facility, encompassing professional football and rugby league spaces, a cricket pavilion, a football museum and an indoor community sports hall. The proposed stadium aims to attract international football and rugby league enthusiasts, offering insights into the rich history and heritage of both clubs.

Excitingly, sources at Sheffield FC have told us they are confident that work will begin on the build this year, with aspirations that the project will be fully complete and ready for the start of the 2025-2026 season.

FARGATE

Fargate

CGI initial plans drawn up showing the reimagined, rejuvenated Fargate area

Thanks to a successful bid, backed by the University of Sheffield, Sheffield secured £15.8 million from the Future High Streets Fund, a government initiative designed to revitalise and reshape the UK high street, and the aim is to transform Fargate into a vibrant social hub in the city centre.

At the heart of this initiative stands Event Central, a six-storey community hub, where a diverse array of talent will take centre stage, uniting entertainment, culture, art, performance, co-working, exhibitions, workshops, talks and events. To make the street a more appealing prospect for shoppers and potential businesses, new landscaping, planting, lighting and seating areas inspired by the Grey to Green scheme on Castlegate will soon also be added.

Keep picking up your monthly Exposed Mag for the latest updates on all of the above!




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