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Sheffield History

The old smells of Sheffield

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Strange one but there used to be some very defining smells in our city in years gone by

The most common ones would probably the smell of urine up the side of the ABC on a Saturday morning whilst queuing for the kids club

The chip shop on Pond Street or the one opposite Jessops/Turnups always made me hungry

But there were others - the over riding chemical smell of Sheaf Valley baths

And the worst one (for me) was the brewery in town - that smell used to make my physically sick when driving through town..

And I wonder if the smell of fresh baked jam donuts has gone now Fletchers burnt down ??

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For those of us born in the 30s & 40s, I would think the smell off thousands of coal fires, creating a constant smoke haze over the City, would be the most memorable smell. Every male had a white silk scarf as part of their winter 'going out' wardrobe. During the smoggy winter months these acted as makeshift 'smog masks', covering the mouth. After a few minutes you could see the outline of your mouth surrounded by a pitch black stain. What were we breathing in?

Nicer smells? How about the smell of roast meat being prepared for Sunday Dinner? In the summer everyone had their windows wide open and Family Favorites playing on the radio.

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The smell of rubber/oil/burning clutches as old open platform Sheffield City Transport buses crawled up Sheffields hills on long summer days.

Closed platform buses never gave off the same smells.

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I used to love the smells that the Steam Engines gave of at the Stations. This is probably because it would mean we were going on our holidays.

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Well, I was born in the early Sixties, but I'd still like to nominate myself as one old smell of Sheffield :blink: :rolleyes:

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The beautiful wafting smells of beer brewing, seeping onto the 73 bus from Chapeltown as it sped up the Wicker, indicating it was soon time for my mam to drag me off the bus at the Sheaf Market stop. I still love that smell....(..soz Admin...;-)...).............blimey almost forgot...The Coffee Shop....behind Cole Brothers....that was theeeeeeeee defining smell for me every Saturday as a teenager...the coffee roasting on the premises was soooooooooooo lovely...and the machine vented straight onto the street.....Beer and Coffee.......(..and a dripping cake from the bakers...)..

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Well, I was born in the early Sixties, but I'd still like to nominate myself as one old smell of Sheffield :blink::rolleyes:

I was going to suggest you waited for a southerly wind and stood outside for a bit. I could check, but I can't imagine you being that bad! :lol:

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A factory at Malin Bridge, maybe Burgon and Ball's, used to have a strange, sickly smell of grease emanating from it. Someone told me that they used whale oil to lubricate the machinery. I'm not sure if that's true but it doesn't smell like it anymore.

Malt and hops from the Wards brewery.

Speedway bike fuel.

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Whereabouts was Burgon and Ball's - was it on the left at the side of the river ?? (as you come up Holme Lane from Hillsborough)

(welcome to the site by the way - good to have you onboard and contributing !)

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A factory at Malin Bridge, maybe Burgon and Ball's, used to have a strange, sickly smell of grease emanating from it. Someone told me that they used whale oil to lubricate the machinery. I'm not sure if that's true but it doesn't smell like it anymore.

Malt and hops from the Wards brewery.

Speedway bike fuel.

Think you'll find it was refered to as "bulls milk" and it was used to keep the cutting heads on lathes etc from overheating. If it's the same stuff it almost had a disinfectant smell mixed with oil.

Welcome to SH and thanks for a great first post.

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Smells I will associate with my youth link previous posts.

As a young teenager standing in Owlerton Stadium with the smell of speedway bikes/fuel about to be replaced as the racing stoppped at the end of the evening with the delicious aroma of freshly baked bread as we passed the, now demolished, bakery neighbouring the circuit on our way home.

Like many others Lady's Bridge very often smelling of hops - as I passed looking down at the orange coloured river.

The various, rarely unpleasant, smells from the steelworks which got stronger and stronger on those rare, brave walks,along Carlisle Street where snow never seem to settle.

Did anyone else, like me, find it difficult to sleep during 'works weeks', when the comforting sounds of the steelworks fell silent?!

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The Lady's Bridge smell is the one that made my ill

Never could cope with it

I can't believe people could actually like that smell - but like they say in Sheffield "there's nowt so ***** as folks"

:lol: :lol: :lol:

Welcome to the site by the way and thanks for posting !

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Did anyone else, like me, find it difficult to sleep during 'works weeks', when the comforting sounds of the steelworks fell silent?!

When I first left Sheffield I found it difficult to sleep, it was only later that I realised it was because I couldn't hear the big hammers banging away.

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I have to admit to liking the smell from the Lady's Bridge Brewery. I also loved the coffee smell which came from Davy's Mikado Cafe in The Haymarket. There was a huge crater with a footbridge across, where the Castle Market now is. Does anyone remember the old Rag and Tag with the gas flares as you walked in? The clanking of the old trams as they made their way through the city centre. We could go on forever. I am referring to the 1950's.

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The sweet sickly smell coming from simpkins down Hillsborough.

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The smell of Hendersons Relish and fish and chips ...

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Any whiff-related posts (apart from our "new members") ?

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For me its the smell of Hendersons as we walked down Leaveygreave Rd to the Infirmary.

The horrible smell of hops from the brewery on Ladysbridge.

All the related smells of Pond St, burgers, chips, and diesel.

And the sickly smell of thick yellow smog!!!

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For those of us born in the 30s & 40s, I would think the smell off thousands of coal fires, creating a constant smoke haze over the City, would be the most memorable smell. Every male had a white silk scarf as part of their winter 'going out' wardrobe. During the smoggy winter months these acted as makeshift 'smog masks', covering the mouth. After a few minutes you could see the outline of your mouth surrounded by a pitch black stain. What were we breathing in?

Nicer smells? How about the smell of roast meat being prepared for Sunday Dinner? In the summer everyone had their windows wide open and Family Favorites playing on the radio.

Crikey that jump-started the memory cells! My Dad used to take me to my Gran's every other Sunday morning. She lived on Clarence Street, and on a sunny summer's morning all the front doors would be open, with the smell of roasting joints,and the sunbeams shining on a haze of thin smoke wafting out of the doorway coming from the dripping in the yorkshire pudding tins getting hot enough for the mix.

(Sorry, had to take a drool break there!)

The smog masks took me back too. Do you remember the occasions when it went dark in the middle of the afternoon? Caused by all the smoke being trapped under clouds that were down on the surrounding hills they said.

I used to like the smell of the hops from the breweries at Lady's Bridge and Wards on Ecclesall Road. And walking through the old market hall, hit by the scent of flowers first, then all the different smells from the other stalls as you went along.

The smell of leather and polish in the cobbler's when you took shoes in to be 'soled and heeled'. And the smell of firelighters in the hardware shop. Not unique to Sheffield I know, but buried in there with all the other memories.

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The only smells I can think of...Hillsborough 1994...chineese food and diesel from the Dominators that were everywhere.

It was the first time I stayed in the City and had gone down to the chineese for our supper. It was wet and noisy, the speed way was on that night.

The other smell is a chemical smell.

Going down Greenland Rd and turning onto Shepcote Lane there is this funny 'plastic' smell that I have only ever noticed in Sheffield.

Oh and one more... what about the smell of dirt, damp and cig's at the Silver Blades!!

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I remember the smell of the Neepsend gas works and queueing up with mother and many others before school

to buy some cokes.[ No not that coke ]

We didn't have a barrow like the posh people we used my old pram. Which reminds me of the squeeky

wheels so what did mam do? She oiled them with the dreaded codliver oil which we wouldn't take,couldn't

afford proper oil :( Because of the smell of the codliver oil we had cats following us all the way along

Neepsend Road, sad funny but true.

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i remember the smell of Cooking dougnuts in Woolworths on haymarket. Does anyone else remember this and also in Saxone shoes the smell of the leather. Another smell not perculier to sheffield i know is the smell of tar which always used to be around the school in summer time.

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i remember the smell of Cooking dougnuts in Woolworths on haymarket. Does anyone else remember this and also in Saxone shoes the smell of the leather. Another smell not perculier to sheffield i know is the smell of tar which always used to be around the school in summer time.

Hi Caz, welcome to the forum. Yes, I remember the smell of the doughnuts, they were on a little conveyor belt if I remember rightly. I love doughnuts, but I have to say that smell put me off them for a long time!

Do you remember hot summers when the tar used to melt at the edges of the road? It was amazing how much mess you could make with a bit of tar on the end of a lolly stick!

Bayleaf

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