New hope for the future of derelict landscape?

7th Feb 2019

CPRE is at the forefront of a new initiative to find a future for the derelict Hepworth’s site in the Loxley Valley.

We're working with Sheffield City Council and the site’s new owners, Patrick Properties, to engage the local community in preparing planning proposals for the huge site, which has lain dormant since the 1990s.

The process began with a small workshop at Langland’s Garden Centre on 13th December 2018, with an invited audience of community groups, environmental groups, Parish councillors and local businesses. This will pave the way for full public engagement in 2019.

Hepworth’s vacated the site in the early 1990s, leaving huge buildings that are now unsafe and falling down. But there are still a couple of small businesses and some cottages in use, as well as an attractive millpond, extensive woodland that is rich in wildlife, and a bowling club. Bovis Homes drew up proposals for a housing development in 2005, but a planning application was never submitted. CPRE was deeply involved in challenging the Bovis proposals, and securing a good outcome for the site is one of our top priorities.

Everyone in Bradfield and the Loxley Valley cares about this site, and we want to see it come back to life in a positive way that’s good for the community and the environment. Patrick Properties have commissioned URBED, a leading planning and design consultancy, to help draw up proposals. 

Participants at the workshop raised a wide range of issues, including the need to enhance the woodland character of the valley, manage flood risk, and ensure that new development can be accessed without putting additional strain on the road network. The full report of the workshop is available [here].

It remains to be seen whether Patrick Properties can secure a development partner who will be able to come up with a scheme that we, and the community, can support, but it's essential that we work with them to give it their best shot.