Welcome ! This is a blog for people who want to be a friend of Wincobank Hill, for those who are fascinated, curious or concerned about the unique hill fort set high above Sheffield's Don Valley, encircled by ancient woodland that conceals the mysteries of history.

Who was here and why? Did they live, work or keep watch here? What part did this place play in the politics of an emerging nation? Was this the cradle of the British metal industry? And where was the water?

So many people are beginning to retell their stories, ask good questions and make suggestions that it's time to share what is happening ....

Sunday, 28 November 2010

Wincobank Hall and the Rawson Estate

A few weeks ago I spent a wonderful few hours at the Sheffield Archives looking through the fascinating documents, photographs and maps associated with Wincobank Hall, home of Mary Anne Rawson, her daughter Lizzie and sister Emily Reed.

Mary Anne survived her daughter and sister and on her death the Estate was divided into Lots to be sold by auction in 1887. The school on the left of the map had already been protected by the by the formation of Upper Wincobank School Trust. The school is now known as Upper Wincobank Chapel. The rest of the land and the Hall was eventually sold and today the area is known as Maple Croft and the new Amaranthus development. The triangle (Lot 3) is at the top of Newman Road and Jenkin Road on the hill above Meadowhall. For the benefit of readers who live at a distance that is in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, UK.

If you live in the area and are interested in finding our more about Wincobank Hall please come along to the Chapel on Wincobank Avenue S5 6BB, from 6.30pm Thursday evening 2nd December 2010. After festive refreshment and a brief AGM, Michael McCoy, the archaeologist who excavated the site of Wincobank Hall before the start of the Amaranthus building work, will tell us what he found beneath the mud.

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Our Member of Parliament, the Right Honourable David Blunkett visited Upper Wincobank Undenominational Chapel today for an informal family service led by the Reverend Inderjit Bhogal OBE.
Afterwards, David sat down with members of the Chapel for a cup of tea. Together, they discussed plans to found a Heritage Education Centre of national status that will honour the work of celebrated Victorian philanthropist Mary Anne Rawson of Wincobank Hall and provide visitors with information about Wincobank Hill.

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

The Posh Pillars on Jenkin Road are part of the same project as the seven Enchanted Chairs on Centenary Green opposite the Chapel on Wincobank Avenue. The chairs are proving firm favourites with of all ages like these Wild Woodlanders on their way to Wincobank Hill.
The final Chair which completed the set recently is a reminder of the Wincobank Brickworks. Many local houses are made of Winco bricks. Is yours?
The project is part of the Neighbourhood Strategies neighbourhood regeneration in the northern area of Sheffield funded through previous central government grants. Part of the Creative Places programme of work, it is aimed at putting culture at the heart of regenerating communities.
You can find more photos and information about the amazing artwork which keeps appearing in the neighbourhood and follow the progress of ‘Journeys to Hidden Places’, at http://journeystohiddenplaces.blogspot.com/

Monday, 1 November 2010

No-one can miss the entrance to Wincobank Hill now! As part of the Journey to Hidden Places public art initiative we have some very posh pillars at the top of Jenkin Road.

How wonderful to see the evocative war poem by Bryn Wainwright (who was just aged 9 when she wrote it in 2010) given pride of place beside the great Victorians who wrote about the beauty of the hill and Mary Anne Rawson who put Wincobank on the international and political map with her campaign for the abolition of slavery and very real hard work to help the poorer members of the community.

Thanks to the many people who have worked to bring this new landmark to Wincobank Hill. The main Pillar and searchlight sculpture is by Brian Fell, the metalwork sculptures on the smaller pillars are by Owen Cunningham.