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Park Hill Flats in Sheffield


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The garchey waste disposal system was quite clever, in its day... the sink functioned as a normal sink for all your cleaning tasks like washing up/ hand laundry and preparing veg etc, but simply turn a cover, and the normal sized plug opened wider to put the waste potato peelings and whatever into a drum. The centre acted as a plunger, and when raised, the waste would flush away. even tin cans and bottles could go through the system (made a helluva racket though, if someone upstairs from you decided to send cans and bottles down the Garchey in the early hours!!!)

The interweaving design of the flats (up/down/ level) actually made best use of the space, (if you look at le Corbusier's Unité d'Habitation in Marseilles you can see this to best effect.

If you knew the layout of one flat, you could work out the way the following flats were laid out. (along the landings, a two-bedroomed "upstairs" flat was always next door to a one- bedroomed/ bedsit downstairs flat, and the three-bedromed "level" flat was always next to / above a 2-bedroomed "downstairs" flat. The living rooms were above each other, in a column, and the kitchens were also aligned, as you went up the block, it was kitchen, kitchen, bedroom, kitchen, kitchen bedroom... the upper part of the double height balcony housing the bedroom.)

The loos, and the bathrooms had extractor fans, so they didn't need natural light, (many houses were built with enclosed bathrooms).

The tiny balconies with the hardwood (or was it asbestos?) panelling were fire escapes. The "downstairs" flats had a similar panel between their single-storey balconies, as do/did almost all the high-rise developments across the city.

The oven problem... I'm puzzled, as the ovens installed on PHF (and HPF, and Kelvin) were the tenants' own. they weren't supplied by the housing/ builders.

edit to say

odd-shaped rooms:-

because of the zig-zag design of the landings, the corner properties had a triangular bit added onto/taken out of their living rooms to account for the angle of the zig-zags

My mates and i used to enter a door next to my house and go down a ladder to where all the main pipework and services were.

It was a large tunnel down there ,you could walk under the whole area and pop up in another location.

We also went on the roof sometimes!

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Here's few photo's I unearthed today, some are the view from Gran's flat window,she lived on Long Henry for many years. The rest are random shots of the building. Forgive the quality..they are old !

Park Hill infant and junior school.

Grace Owen Nursery.

Posted Images

Guest seanylove

BBC 2

Friday May 1st, 21:00 Hrs

English Heritage: Romancing the stone, Park Hill

Documentary series following the work of English Heritage.

www.bbc.co.uk/programmes

And a more in-depth explanation as to what its all about here .. The Architects Web Site

i watched the progam on bbc2 last nite . wot did every 1 make of it ??? i hope im wrong but to me it didnt seem very well planned out especially the bit about the train station shudnt they of researched that before splashing out millions of pounds . and startin work evan tho they didnt have the money to finish it . i think they will end up bein demolished unfortunately sheffield without park hill flats wud be strange .

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  • 5 months later...

Another angle on the renovations

While the bottom end of the flats near the magic roundabout are fully dismantled for renovation it appears that the top end of the flats near Talbot Street may be partially occupied from this recent picture.

What do you think, - someone still living in there?

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Yes there are still residents in the Talbot Road end of the estate. They reckon that it will take up to 10 years for the redevelopment to be completed.

There was a very good programme on the BBC about PH and why the listing was given and about the history of the old girl. You can view it on Iplayer for the next few days. Here is the link:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00mj...ets_in_the_Sky/

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Yes there are still residents in the Talbot Road end of the estate. They reckon that it will take up to 10 years for the redevelopment to be completed.

There was a very good programme on the BBC about PH and why the listing was given and about the history of the old girl. You can view it on Iplayer for the next few days. Here is the link:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00mj...ets_in_the_Sky/

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Yes there are still residents in the Talbot Road end of the estate. They reckon that it will take up to 10 years for the redevelopment to be completed.

There was a very good programme on the BBC about PH and why the listing was given and about the history of the old girl. You can view it on Iplayer for the next few days. Here is the link:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00mj...ets_in_the_Sky/

Thanks saz17, and welcome to Sheffield History. I have already seen the programme on the BBC and like many I think the demise of the flats (the old girl as you fondly called them) is quite sad. Despite the listing I think the council would love to be able to ewash their hands of them and demolish the lot, but that would be even worse.

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Thanks saz17, and welcome to Sheffield History. I have already seen the programme on the BBC and like many I think the demise of the flats (the old girl as you fondly called them) is quite sad. Despite the listing I think the council would love to be able to ewash their hands of them and demolish the lot, but that would be even worse.

Now its a giant advertising hoarding

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Now its a giant advertising hoarding

Park Hill Flats reduced to an advertisment for Strongbow cider :(

What would my old grandmother have to say about that :o

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I certainly agree that the council would like to wash their hands of PH. Another example of narrow mindedness from the councils imho. History repeating itself, how many classically designed examples of fine architecture have been demolished to make way for new? Just because at the time they were not the "in thing" and not liked by the majority of the public?

As a nation we should preserve examples of our heritage, without these movements in architecture we would have not progressed to where we are today. PH to me is a lot more than bricks and mortar.

It defines a period in history in particular post war Britain. I have done a lot of research into PH and at one time I would have been glad to see the back of it. Yes the estate fell on hard times but only because the very people who were enlisted to maintain her could not be bothered to put the time or money in. You only need to look at the Barbican in London to see that with the right maintainance and care, combined with the right residents brutalist architecture and in my mind particularily PH, can be both successful and desirable.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Now its a giant advertising hoarding

The Strongbow advertisment did not last very long, the new replacement seem more appropriate lol

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The Strongbow advertisment did not last very long, the new replacement seem more appropriate lol

I'm sure that same replacement advert has also appeared on the University arts tower while that has been covered up for refurbishment. lol

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I'm sure that same replacement advert has also appeared on the University arts tower while that has been covered up for refurbishment. lol

Recycling Dave, got to do your bit for the planet lol

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Recycling Dave, got to do your bit for the planet lol

I suppose "refurbishment" is really the recycling of Park Hill Flats in a way. <_<

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  • 2 weeks later...

I suppose "refurbishment" is really the recycling of Park Hill Flats in a way. <_<

All advertising has now been removed (Strongbow and Sheffield History :) )

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All advertising has now been removed (Strongbow and Sheffield History :) )

I'm not so sure it looks any better for it yet though :blink:

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I'm not so sure it looks any better for it yet though :blink:

The scaffolding is growing, will keep an eye out, see what happens

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  • 3 weeks later...

All advertising has now been removed (Strongbow and Sheffield History :) )

No mention of the strange faces that have appeared then,

what look to be ghosts of former residents trapped in the building.

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No mention of the strange faces that have appeared then,

what look to be ghosts of former residents trapped in the building.

Looks more like the work of a talented local artist to me.

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Looks more like the work of a talented local artist to me.

I wonder if the paintings could be anything to do with them fitting the windows?

Streets in the sky fitted with windows on the world

"Workmen started on the block overlooking Sheaf Street and Ponds Forge

and are expected to move on to the side above Park Square,

that was covered by a huge Sheffield History advert, by Christmas"

he he

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I wonder if the paintings could be anything to do with them fitting the windows?

Streets in the sky fitted with windows on the world

"Workmen started on the block overlooking Sheaf Street and Ponds Forge and are expected to move on to the side above Park Square,

that was covered by a huge Sheffield History advert, by Christmas"

he he

Interesting linked article, - so they haven't "downed tools" on Park Hill then, - which was the impression given by the previously mentioned TV documentary. It looks as though work is continuing and windows are being fitted (wonder how many of them will get smashed before its finished).

Unfortunately I can't get the 5 second video clip in the link to play.

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  • 5 weeks later...

Like that link to the 1960s/70s piece.

I have seen this display before.

A couple of years ago when Weston Park Museum first reopened after being renovated and modernised they had a display about life on Park Hill Flats and it included these very pictures and stories.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Like that link to the 1960s/70s piece.

I have seen this display before.

A couple of years ago when Weston Park Museum first reopened after being renovated and modernised they had a display about life on Park Hill Flats and it included these very pictures and stories.

Latest link from BBC Radio Sheffield

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