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Sheffield History

Hillsborough Barracks

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I hope no one minds me reviving an old thread once more. I'm intrigued about the reference to the Barracks water supply from Rawson Spring, that filled several water tanks beneath the site. Does anyone know the source of this information?

I am currently hunting out the Rawson Spring watercourse; it apparently still flows in a pipe through the gardens, similar to that shown in the 1850s map.

Does anyone know if the water continues to feed the tanks? As far as I can tell, it seems to go under the Langsett Road and you can hear the watercourse through the drains in Swamp Walk. Thereafter it is converted into a sewer, and all the clean water must be diverted off to the sewage works beyond Meadowhall, rather than flow to the Don.

Unless anyone can suggest otherwise?!

HILLSBOROUGH BARRACKS

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LOCATION

Hillsborough Barracks is a walled complex of buildings between Langsett Road and Penistone Road in the Hillsborough District of Sheffield, Sheffield S6 2GB

The complex covers an area of circa 22 acres and dates from 1848, replacing an inadequate barracks at Hillfoot at an estimated cost of £94,000.

The barracks is divided into three terraces. The first (top) terrace faces onto what is now Langsett Road. This contained the Mess establishment, quarters for around 40 officers and a similar number of servants, and a chapel. This building has a length of about 354 feet and a width and height of about 40 feet, is three stories high and has a mixture of gothic and castellated styles.

The other buildings of the barracks consisted of:

* A large five bedroomed house serving as the Garrison Commander’s Quarters outside the walls
* A 58-patient two story hospital incorporating a barracks for RAMC personnel, a Dental Clinic and a facility for treating women
* Infantry soldiers quarters
* A clock towered building, with Cavalry soldiers' quarters on the first floor and stabling for 260 horses on the ground floor (total accommodation for 918 NCO and other ranks)
* A Gymnasium
* A Riding School
* A school for 80 children and accommodation for the schoolmistress
* Married quarters flats for 50 families provided outside the walls
* A gun Shed housing six Field guns
* The Barracks Store with living quarters for the Barracks Sergeant
* A Guard Room, incorporating a Police Room, Detention Cells, and an exercise yard
* A Vehicle Shed (built in 1903) which could house 26 motor cars
* A Veterinary Infirmary, large enough to house 18 horses
* A Granary
* Four cookhouses
* And various workshops

Water supply

The barracks had its own water supply, fed from the nearby Rawson Spring on the facing hillside towards Walkley. The spring kept 21 underground tanks filled with over half a million gallons of water. The smallest tank held 12,000 gallons, the biggest 50,000 gallons. It was rumoured at the time that this water supply would be for the benefit of Sheffield’s gentry who would seek refuge in the barracks in the event of an uprising.

With entrances on both the Langsett and Penistone Roads it was considered to be amongst the finest and best arranged barracks in the kingdom, and as a military depot it ranked amongst the largest in the country.


The Great Sheffield Flood

On the northern side of the Barracks runs the River Loxley. On the night of Friday 11 March 1864 the ill-fated Dale Dyke Dam further up the Loxley Valley at Bradfield burst and the resulting flood waters breeched a stone wall that was three feet thick. The water reached a height of about 60 feet above normal river water level, and drowned two children of Sergeant Paymaster Foulds in the Married Quarters.

Trivia - If you look around the entrance to the Morrisons at Hillsborough Barracks you can see a level line of where the flood reached up to


Army Units

Army units to have been stationed include:

* 4th Royal Irish Dragoon Guards in 1856
* 98th (Prince of Wales’s) Foot in 1856
* 7th (the Princess Royal’s) Dragoon Guards in 1857
* 24th (Warwickshire) Foot in 1859
* 58th (Rutlandshire) Foot in 1861
* 16th (Bedfordshire) Foot in 1861
* 22nd (Cheshire) Foot in 1870
* E Battery Royal Horse Artillery in the 1870s
* A Squadron 2nd Dragoon Guards (Queen’s Bays) in 1897
* 6th Battalion (Louth Militia) Royal Irish Rifles in 1899
* Volunteers from the Yorkshire Dragoons and Yorkshire Hussars underwent training at the Barracks in preparation for the Boer War in 1900
* 32nd Brigade, Royal Field Artillery in 1901
* 2nd Battalion King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry in 1905
* 2nd Battalion The Cheshire (22nd) Regiment in 1920

The last Army unit ( 29th Field (Howitzer ) Battery left the Barracks in February 1930, leaving the Barracks unoccupied except for a resident caretaker.


Sale

On 26 July 1932 an auction was held on instruction of the War Department by Eadon & Lockwood at Sheffield. However, when bidding only reached £12,000 the auction was terminated and the Barracks was withdrawn from sale. In October of that year the complex was sold to Burdall’s Ltd, a manufacturist chemist noted for it gravy salt, and it became known as the Burdall’s Buildings.


Redevelopment

A major redevelopment of the site was embarked upon in the late 1980s. The result is the large retail and business complex seen today, in which all the surviving structures have been cleaned of the grime from the Sheffield's industrial past.

The focus of the complex is the Morrisons Supermarket covering the old Artillery Parade Ground, which has been roofed for the purpose and is fronted by the clock towered stable block. The old Infantry Parade Ground is now a a two story car park between the Stable Block and the old Officer Mess (now the headquarters for Sheffield Insulations Ltd).

The old football ground and Rifle Range are now a B&Q DIY Superstore. The Married Quarters which served as flats until the end of the 1970s were demolished and the area is now a McDonald's Drive-through Restaurant. The Garrison Commanders’s House was demolished and its site is now covered with a garage and petrol station.

The old Guard room is now the Garrison Hotel and Jailhouse Bar. The hospital building is now Skills for Business, part of Sheffield College.

Other buildings within the site serve as a Jobcentre Plus and the headquarters of the Coalfield Pensions Scheme.

The whole site is once again known as Hillsborough Barracks. As a Grade II listed building, it represents the only surviving example of a walled barracks within the UK.


PICTURES
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THE GARRISON HOTEL
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Having opened in 2001, The Garrison Hotel is converted from what used to be the Grade II listed jail, guardhouse and ammunition building of Hillsborough Barracks.


Conference Room - The Cell
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The Cell is situated in the basement of the Jailhouse


Conference Room - The Armoury
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The Armoury is a Grade II listed building where all the ammunitions for the barracks were stored.



Garrison Hotel Website - http://www.garrisonhotel.co.uk/

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I hope no one minds me reviving an old thread once more.

None of our members object to a thread being revived from the past,

after all this is a history site, thank you for contributing and the questions asked

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None of our members object to a thread being revived from the past,

after all this is a history site, thank you for contributing and the questions ask

Hi I was born and bred in Hillsbro and i never knew this much history about the barracks, brilliant info .One question relating to other threads (tunnels under Sheffield) my parents told me there were tunnels from city centre to the Barracks , can anyone confirm.! war baby.thats the way to do it.

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I hope no one minds me reviving an old thread once more. I'm intrigued about the reference to the Barracks water supply from Rawson Spring, that filled several water tanks beneath the site. Does anyone know the source of this information?

I am currently hunting out the Rawson Spring watercourse; it apparently still flows in a pipe through the gardens, similar to that shown in the 1850s map.

Does anyone know if the water continues to feed the tanks? As far as I can tell, it seems to go under the Langsett Road and you can hear the watercourse through the drains in Swamp Walk. Thereafter it is converted into a sewer, and all the clean water must be diverted off to the sewage works beyond Meadowhall, rather than flow to the Don.

Unless anyone can suggest otherwise?!

My sister used to work for a furnace manufacturer that had premises just to the side of the top gateway. This must be more than 30 years ago.

She told me that when she first worked there a chap told her about steel covers to water storage tanks under the the basement floor.

Someone had once investigated and shut the cover very sharpish when he saw water immediately under the cover.

I would think that draining the tanks would probably result in the building rising out of the ground in the same way that empty septic tanks sometimes do when the water table is high.

The chances are the water is still in there I would guess.

HD

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I may have mentioned this before, but my great/great grandad... one Michael McGovern, was stationed at the Barracks, together with his twin brother. They both served in the Queen's Bays having , as a couple of young lads,signed up in Ireland. Michael held the rank of Farrier Major and the twins served all over the UK with the Bays...putting down "unrest and insurrection". Sheffield was his last billet before retiring from the Army . Together with his large family... which had,not unnaturally,grown over the years... he then settled in Sheffield.

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There's a census of the barracks for 1841 here that has an entry for McGoverne William 30 1811 Ireland M Private 2nd Dragoon Guards. Slightly different spelling, but any relation?

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As you know name spellings can be variable. Michael's father was , I believe, a William, living in Co. Monaghan and is described as a "Farmer". It could be that he was a relative of Michael.. his Father, maybe. I shall have to investigate...Thanks!

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