* A 117Mby MP4 Video, which is 7mins 26secs long.
* NB: As this is longer than the fixed 3 minute viewing in the Flickr interface, the Video must be downloaded to the desktop to see the full length.
* Right-click on the down-arrow option, the last of the three options to the lower right of the video frame. Select ‘Save-As’ and view..
* A series of shots taken on 24th November, 2021, and around 6 months later on 3rd June, 2022.
This forms a sequence of pictures showing the on-going development at the Forge Island site, between the River Don and the Rotherham Cut of the Sheffield & South Yorkshire Navigation, in the centre of Rotherham. It follows on from 2 earlier pieces, the first one-
taken on March 6th, 2020 (stills 5878->6007)-
doesn’t really bear on the current and later piece from 2021, except that it shows what happens when the River Don is in full flood and within the town centre and what is being undertaken to prevent the effects of this having a very serious impact on the new housing and business development which is currently underway. The 2nd of the three pieces was taken a year after the above one in April, 2021 (stills 7196->8593)-
and just over a year after that one, this was the status in early June this year; it is mow almost mid-August so the scene will have changed once more.
I well remember coming back into town late on a Sunday evening, on the 69 Sheffield bus, from my grandmother’s which was a simple 2-up-2-down terraced house on the aptly named ‘River Street’ in the old Bradmarsh area on Sheffield Road. This was not far from the exotically named, ‘Bromley Sands’; all of which was very close to the vast Iron & Steelworks, comprising the, then named, ‘Steel, Peach & Tozer Ltd.’ which ran all the way along Sheffield Road, to Templeborough. All this has now disappeared under new road tarmac, several round-abouts and the Bradmarsh Industrial Estate. My grandmother’s house would have been along the first part of Centenary Way as it exits the roundabout near the large Citroen Garage, the old position of the house in the middle of the road carriageway, would now overlook the garage itself! Not far from the house were two G.C.R. ‘mineral lines’ which were conveyed over the River Don, side-by-side, one crossing Sheffield Road into a large area of high-level sidings which were atop what is now the Bradmarsh Industrial area; this area was flattened to make room for the Industrial site. The other line over the river terminated in what was once the Ickles Hall area between the River and the housed and, there was a low, grilled aperture in the high wall at the end of Marsh St. with River St. close by allowing anyone to easily view the two mineral lines and their trains without any obstruction. The aperture in that wall, miraculously, can be seen on one of the ‘Britain From Above’ aerial views, taken in 1953 here-
the aperture being right next to the end house on the partially still extant, Marsh Street. Note it is better to view these having created a free account at
there is no fee unless you wish to use the views commercially. Having obtained an account, you can zoom in and scroll around the images in this area taken in the 1930s and 1950s, the aperture can be seen close to the parallel River Don and Tinsley Canal waterways in the lower left and middle left of the views, respectively. Enough of this I think, looking through those excellent views, and many of the others in the same area, will take up hours of your time, it has mine!
Moving now along Sheffield Road passing by the new housing developments at the side of the River Don in the Westgate area, or ‘quarter’ as it’s now known, the other development area are to receive the same ‘accolade’ once the work is finished; all this forming part of the £42 million redevelopment of Rotherham town centre, yet again.
* The Video Sequence
As an introduction this time, the stills footage shows 12 pictures from the middle part of the last century, the 1950s/60s, in the area bordered, to the west and east respectively, by the ‘Rotherham Cut’ of the ‘Sheffield & South Yorkshire Navigation’, and the River Don, to the south by Main Street and to north by Chantry Bridge. The 12 shots illustrate just how ‘full’ the area used to be with heavy industry, the chief one being the ‘Rotherham Forge & Rolling Mill’ and its very noisy steam hammer, located right in the centre of the town, was easily heard everywhere…
* The B/W ‘Yesteryear’ Introduction. The first 6 of these 12 pictures are related to the canal cut at the south end of Rotherham Lock with the ‘Rotherham Forge & Rolling Mill’ standing gaunt alongside the waterway. The very first shot shows the old canal house which was responsible for comings and goings on the canal as well as controlling the railway swing bridge across the cut and into the Rolling Mill site. The base of this bridge is still in-situ and has been featured here in the last video, from 2021, 1min 52 secs in, and indeed, before that, the 2020 video, 1min 12 secs in from the beginning, see appropriate links above.
The tracks on the swing bridge can be seen at the other side of the railings and the bridge support channel at the other side of the cut. There is a rake of wagons parked in the sidings in Rotherham Central Station, on the bank above the main lines and, to the far right, and in business at this time, the ‘Phoenix Hotel’, demolished only in recent years. In the next shot, ‘Boston Castle’ can be seen in the background, immediately above the canal footbridge which also has only just recently been removed during the on-going redevelopment. Canal barge ‘Harmony’, I think, has just exited the Rotherham Lock and is turning downstream, everything looking black, grimy and unkempt. In the third shot ‘Harmony’ heads away towards Kilnhurst and Doncaster and in the next shot, passes two companion river craft, barge ‘Serenity’ next to ‘Gratitude’. The Rotherham coal-fired power station is in the background and a HGV behind the barges appears to be off-loading its cargo into another barge. There’s also a rake of 1950s/60s cars parked on the Rolling Mills access road to the right, but the quality of the picture precludes reading any number plates etc. though I guess the models may be identifiable. The next, 5th, shot shows a more open aspect with no traffic about of any sort. Rother Central is over on the left with the ‘Phoenix Hotel’ at far left, Rotherham Power Station stands dominant in the background and now ‘Rotherham Forge & Rolling Mills Co. Ltd.’ can be seen though the bulk of the works are out-of-shot, to the right. MOving on to shot 7 and now looking south along Don Street from the Main Street road bridge which borders the site to the south, and yet more heavy industry resides alongside both banks of the River Don. In the distance is the ‘Hovis Factory’ as it used to be known as, the flour mill of the R.H.M., ‘Rank-Hovis Mcdougall Flour Mill’ building, this totally demolished starting in early 2012. To the right, another prestigious building, that of ‘Guest & Chrimes Ltd.’ and now currently, after a long period where it was up for sale, grade II listed, but now being demolished though, as this video shows, the work appears to have been halted. The next shot, 8, looks back over the other side of the Main St. bridge and shows, to the left ‘Rotherham Forge & Rolling Mills Co. Ltd.’ at the top end of Forge Island, the canal cut veers off to the left and the River Don heads towards Rotherham Weir on the right, in the centra of the town; none of the riverside buildings now exist of course. All Saints PArish Church stands prominent in the right background and shows how close everything was to the noisy Forge.
* The last four of the set from the 1950s/60s, show various aspects of the Central Station area, the 1st, picture 9, a grand vista of the front aspect of the station and the car park/waste ground which stood in front; some of the vehicles there will be easily identifiable in this clearer shot. MAin St is to the left, ‘Joseph Green’s Timber Yard’ is behind the station, the latter having its doors open for business, so this must be before the closing year of 1966. Looking back the other from the timer yard and the slightly elevated sidings stand on this side of the lines, some of the wagons containing covered wood supplies with the station’s typical G.C.R. style lattice footbridge above the covered wagon. Rotherham Central had staggered platforms, the down line, nearest the camera was to the left of the footbridge and the up line, visible in the picture, to the right. There looks to be a freight working on the down line but the loco isn’t visible. The space at the front of the station, between the station and Forge Island, was used once a year, for the visiting, yearly, Statute Circus, operated by Billy Smart. Here we see the space which was vacant in the earlier shot now totally filled with Circus paraphernalia, including some of the ‘live type’, 3 large elephants.. those were the days, but I was never very fond of circuses, though clearly, in this shot, a lot of others area, it was a very well-attended and popular event. The lock-side house controlling canal activities, at the lower end of ‘Rotherham Cut’, is also visible above the tents and crowd of people on the left. The connecting line from the station, over to Forge Island, crossing the canal next to the house, came off the up line where the two large gate-posts can be seen at left. And the last of the 12 B/W shots shows a general view of the area of the station, looking north, the timber yard on the left has now been modernised but there is no connection to the main line. A freight working, with its guards van can be seen on the down line, heading north and the ‘Phoenix Hotel’ is once more visible in the background. This looks to be a latter day shot as the Power Station has gone, the down platform is derelict and the station buildings have been demolished, to the right there is a different sort of canal-side activity so this is well past the 1966 period when the G.C.R.’s line was finally closed.
* November 2021 & March 2022. The November shots first, show the scene on the 21st with the high reach crane doing its stuff just in front of the site access road. The refurbishment of Rotherham Lock can be seen with now a flood defence wall running alongside it and the age-old footbridge across the lock now having been removed; it is assumed this will be replaced. At this time, the new flood barrier portcullis-style lock gate had not been installed but the foundations at either side are evident. The age-old Main St. bridge is to the right in the 3rd shot with the crane lifting materials in for the new lock gate. ‘Rotherham Minster’, All Saints Parish Church stands sentinel in the background and over-seeing yet more changes to the town centre; it has done so for over 500 years.
* The next 20 shots, 6-13 from November 2021 & 14-25 from March 2022, show the changes which have taken place along Don Street at the other side of the Main St. bridge. The large, once listed, ‘Guest & Chrimes’ building has been under demolition for a while now but at this time, and the following March when I re-visited, the work looks to have been halted, with no contractors at the site at all. The end walls of the building have been taken off, vegetation has sprung up inside the red perimeter fence and the whole place looks rather forlorn. In the 2020 video there are some pictures which I took in 2008, when this building was up for sale, the link is above, the pictures start at 3m 40secs in. As a matter of historical interest…
‘… These shots from 12 years ago, were taken on 7th September, 2008 when the Grade II listed building was being offered ‘For Sale’ by ‘G.V.A. Grimley’ and I bet that was a hard thing to sell in the year of the great financial down-turn; it never did sell. The second of the shots shows the distinctive front with white stone features which in around 1959/1960, I could see from my grandparent’s house which was situated on an elevated position on Moorgate over-looking the Rother Valley, in Rotherham. At night, when visiting them, I used to watch steam hauled passenger services slowly making their way up from Tinsley & Templeborough to vanish behind this lit building, on the still extant line of course, and on into the old Rotherham Central Station; the white stonework making the building easy to pick out in the dark…’
* The next two shots show the work on-going with the outlet of the ‘Holmes Tail Goit’, this carried water from the River Don further upstream near the Holmes Rolling Mill just this side of Holmes Lock, the water then being carried through the Alma Works at Holmes and on into the London Works, the Brinsworth Iron & Wheel Works and the Oxygen Works, in this locality, all on the site of of which is now ‘C.F. Booth Metal Recyclers Ltd.’ The water then finally exiting to outflow back into the River Don, not far from Main Street Bridge. ‘Goit’ appears to be a language peculiarity associated with the two counties of the Roses; Red & White, for Lancashire and Yorkshire. It looks as if the works are to remedy blockages which occur with the water course in times of flooding as the River Don the pushes water back up the culvert, causing problems on the site. A picture from Main St. bridge shows the works on-going on 21st November, 2021 with the culvert blocked off and pipes installed to carry any water into the river; shots from 2022 follow later on in the video. Shots 14-25, taken in March, 2022. In brighter and challenging conditions, the scene along Don St. looks much the same. I have taken the liberty of enhancing the views inside the end of the building. so that some of the internal structure can be seen, there still looks to be quire a bit of asbestos around the place, but the pigeons don’t seem to mind! It was always a very imposing building, set out from a main block at the front with 4 ‘arms’, extending back from the river, turning this into apartments would have been a very welcome addition to the area… One shot looks across the river to a new development, the ‘Westgate Quarter’ showing houses now replacing the once stark industrial buildings which populated the site all along here. It looks like there has been a bit of a land-slip just where the bank reinforcement stops; a salutary lesson maybe? Looks like the bank will have to be reinforced to stop further flooding issues for the properties right on the bank side! Following o n from that, shot 22 shows a view looking towards the now completed ‘Holmes Tail Goit’ water works, sadly, the distinctive old cast-iron bridge wall, seen in the 2021 video at the link above, 1m 2secs in from the beginning, has been removed and a new, and perfectly presentable, stone bridge put in its place; would have been nice if the old metal bridge wall had been re-used for something here…
* The next 51 shots, 26-76, show a tour around the site, starting back at the Main St. road bridge at the south end and then circulating around through the town centre and lastly coming back at the north end of the site and looking over the development from the Chantry Bridge area. The very first shot in this sequence, reveals the now completed Portcullis Lock Flood Gate, the original Rotherham Lock top gate, a standard wooden structure, is still present. The new addition does look rather graceful however, the view shows the ‘Rotherham Cut’, or ‘Browns Lock’ on the left, the tip of Forge Island at centre and the River Don at right, with its string of orange ‘beads’, warning of the approach to the Weir. The, now old, access road bridge stands next to the 10 year old block of flats development, the owners must have a grand view from there and wouldn’t be surprised if all this new development doesn’t increase the value of their properties. The next shot shows the information board on Main St. right next to the S.Y. Police Headquarters. the site now effectively closed off while work is undertaken, apart from the access road down the side of the Police H.Q. Several shots follow the first showing a round-robin view of the new Portcullis Lock gate, can’t imagine it won’t stand out as a go-to feature of the new development of houses, shops and cinema on the Forge Island site. Shot 31 follows which shows the view around the back of the Police H.Q. looking along Station Road where once the old Rotherham Central Station stood, long before the H.Q. was built. This would have been been the end of the station building, with the lattice footbridge seen in the first of the ‘Yesteryear’ shots, over at the far left. The lines are now electrified, at 750VDC, for the Sheffield Tram/Train system and the overly dominating O.H.L. equipment can be seen on the left, the Tram stop being just about where the 2nd of the O.H.L. supports can be seen. Station Road is now blocked off during the canal-side development so its a walk back passed the information board, now shown more clearly, indicating the level of flood defence work which is on-going in the Rotherham area; it will be interesting to see how all this copes when the river is in flood again, if it ever will in these days of very hot, August weather. Picture 33 in this section shows the view from the old Market Street area looking west over to the ‘new’ Rotherham Central Station and, at right, the old footway from the town centre over to what used to be ‘Tesco Supermarket’. Tesco found a new site in the town centre after the awful ‘blockhouse’, the library on Nottingham Street, was demolished, not before time, along with 2 large car parks, and Tesco re-opened a much larger store there, with replacement underground car parks. Following demolition of Tesco on the Forge Island site, and other clearances, a large car park included, ready for the new redevelopment, there seemed little point in having the old footway bride across the river and, on July the 14th, just over a month ago, the bridge was removed, see-
A new, better designed footway, is planned to replace this during the course of the development work.
From the Forge Island site, the next 22 pictures, 35-56, show views whilst walking in the town, along Corporation St., parallel to the River Don/Forge Island site. The are some impressive building in Rotherham and, it has to be said, some way less impressive ones, this shot is of the former type and was the old ‘Williams Deacons Bank’, latterly ‘Nat West’ and now clearly up for rent. An impressive door arch has ‘BANK’ prominently shown under the arch and it certainly looks the part, the rest of the structure looks like it needs some T.L.C. Next follows some impressive views of ‘Rotherham Minster’ at this time under some maintenance work but even so the fine weather and blossom helped to make for a good shot. Following that, a walk and some views along Corporation St. with the access to Forge Island, at left where the purple billboards are located, now gone, but with plans to replace the bridge with something new. This is the location, just beyond the billboards, where the 69, Sheffield to Rotherham bus terminated to let off its passengers at the lower end of Corporation St around 10pm at night, and was the spot where I and my family got off after a visit to River St. and my grandparents house, in the late 1950s. This is where the almighty ‘forge-hammer of the gods’ rhythmically pounded, at about one crash-down per minute, not far away over behind ‘L. A. Ratcliffe the Stationers’ shop, at 31, Corporation St., just 200m away on the island site. In now deem ‘Ratcliffe the Stationer’ was situated in what is now the demolished section of buildings, the access across the river was here and that has all now gone. ‘Ratcliffe’s the Stationer’ subsequently moved up Corporation St. to a premises, No.8, on Church St. near the bank shown earlier, I went in a few years ago to buy pen refills; it moved out of town to the Wickersley area when the ‘All Saints Buildings’ shopping area, to be seen in the last shots in this video, were all finally demolished a few years ago. The next shot in the sequence shows the still extant footbridge, to left of centre, between the town centre and what was the Tesco Supermarket, the latter has now gone of course and, as mentioned earlier, the bridge was removed on July 14th.
The next four shots show the billboards along Corporation St. along to the top side of the ‘Wilco Supermarket’ retailer and then 5 views show the scene on the other side of the road. The relative ‘mess’ which has existed there for a number of years, a section of the ‘mess’ created when a fire broke out at the ‘Muskaan Indian Cuisine’ restaurant on July 18th, 2011, see-
Prior to this in 2007, there was also a malicious fire which gutted the upper floor of ‘Club Envy’, right next door to the restaurant, see-
This area now appears not to be of any interest to anyone, the lower half of that side of Corporation St. having been left in a state of dereliction all that time; what a place! The five views look along Corporation St. to the bottom and Chantry Bridge on the left and the newly refurbished Bus Station on the right. The extent of the fire damage to the upper floors of the lower 3 buildings is evident and there has been no owner intervention in the ensuing years, one can’t imagine that this state of affairs will be allowed to continue with the ongoing multi-million pound redevelopment going just behind the building at the other side of the road! at the other side of the road, immediately opposite the 3 fire-damaged buildings, stands one of the towns most iconic buildings, the old ‘ODEON’ cinema, but which opened as the ‘Regal Cinema’ on December 22nd, 1934, see-
This became the ‘ODEON’ in 1946 when it was leased to the ‘Rank Organisation’ chain, in 1975 it was sold by them to an Independent outfit who renamed it once more to the ‘Scala Cinema’. It finally closed on 23rd September, 1983 with the last film being, ‘Porky’s II’: The Next Day’. It then subsequently became a Bingo Hall and renamed once more, to ‘The Ritz’ and late ‘The Mecca’. It was put up for auction in February, 2020, for £600,000+, amazingly though it reached £590,000 and failed to sell. A year or so later, with the threat of demolition, it became Grade II listed in November, 2021 and, as these two shots of it on lower Corporation St., next to Chantry Bridge, it thankfully still stands. Its ‘rising organ’! was sold separately and is currently under refurbishment with the ‘East Midlands Cinema Organ Association’.
The ‘ODEON’ of course was named such after ‘Oscar Deutsch’, a British businessman who founded the ‘Odeon Cinemas’ in 1928 and was the son of a successful Hungarian, Jewish scrap metal merchant, Leopold Deutsch. see-
Oscar Deutsch was blown out of bed when a bomb landed on his house in 1941 and later that year, died of Cancer; his wife subsequently sold ‘Odeon Cinemas’ to the ‘Rank Organisation’.
* The next 5 pictures, 52-56, show views of the Chantry Bridge area, at the north-end of the Forge Island redevelopment site. Some information related to this age-old structure-
‘… ‘Rotherham Bridge’ crosses the River Don in central Rotherham, South Yorkshire. It is known for its bridge chapel, considered the best preserved in England. A document of 1385 refers to Bridgegate in the town, which implies that a previous bridge existed on the same site. The road it carries was originally the main route from London to Richmond. The current bridge was erected by 1483, when the Chapel of Our Lady of Rotherham Bridge was added. It is of ashlar sandstone and is built on three piers, each with a cutwater. John Leland, writing around 1540, described a "fair Stone Bridge of 4 arches" and "a Chapel of Stone well wrought". The chapel was dissolved in 1547 and converted into first an almshouse, then the town gaol and finally a shop. The bridge was altered in 1768–69 by John Platt, working for John Carr of York, but was restored to its original dimensions by Reginald Blomfield in 1927, when Chantry Bridge was built alongside. The chapel was restored at the same time. Chantry Bridge is Grade I listed and is a Scheduled Ancient Monument…’
At the other side of the river from the chapel and in similar style, is ‘The Bridge Inn’, some information related to this almost equally age-old structure-
‘… Formerly ‘Nellie Denes’. Recently internally restyled in a Goth decor. The original home of Rotherham CAMRA, the pub reverted to its original name after a spell as Nellie Denes. It is an Old Mill tied house, originally built for the Mappin Brewery, opposite, in 1930 using stone from the original Bridge Inn, which dated back to the 1700s. up to four real ales from Old Mill are on the bar. There is live music most Friday and Saturday evenings with open mic on Thursday evenings. Upstairs, two function rooms are used. The nearby Chantry Bridge has one of only three Bridge Chapels still existing. There is a wall mural by Phil Padfield in the outside yard area that was done for the 125th anniversary of Arthur Wharton’s signing for Rotherham Town FC. Arthur was the first professional black player in the UK.
Historic Interest. Originally built for the Mappin Brewery, opposite, in 1930 using stone from the original Bridge Inn, which dated back to the 1700s…’
* The next 10 shots, 57-66, shows views from the north-end of the site looking over the development and the large expanse of land which constitutes Forge Island now that all the peripheral buildings have been swept away and the site cleared. The extent and size of the metal flood barrier walls can now be seen, in several places there being water-tight gates, which will be closed in times of flood, presumably with the occupants having left the area or, holding tight in their properties.. The block of flats on Market St. are in the background at left with the S.Y. Police Headquarters at centre and Rotherham Central Station at right, next to the canal. The 3rd & 4th in this set show the view towards the new Portcullis Lock gate on the right and the rear of the ex-‘ODEON’ cinema on the left, with ‘Rotherham Minster’ just to its right. The next shot shows a canal boat, ‘Cool Jazz’, moored in the distance at right and, just to its left, the old exit of the ‘Rotherham Cut’ can be seen, this was where the canal formation was once situated but it was diverted away at Ickles Lock by the M.S.L. so they could use the canal bed for the railway formation which appears at right. A lengthy, updated, description of all this can be found here-
Pictures 7 and 8 in this section show 2 area near both the station and canal, the 1st is the old, now gated off, access along the canal to Aldwarke and beyond, the owner of the old canal-side building, subject to some controversy regarding the legality of shutting off a public access way… The second picture shows an old S&R, ‘Sheffield & Rotherham Railway’, commemorative plaque made of stone and was originally at Westgate Station, see-
Rotherham’s very first station. One of the local councillors rescued it from where it had been moved, Boston Castle, after Westgate Station closed on 4th October, 1952. It was then placed in museum storage in the mid-1990s and had been there until the new Rotherham Central Station was refurbished a few years ago at which time, it was re-located here. The commemorative plaque needs to have some ‘gardening’ done around it and a more visible space cleared so that folk can see the stone more clearly, it is after all, around 180 years old, and needs a bit more ‘reverence’ than what is being given to it at the moment, it ought to be on a plinth, at the very least. The last two of this sequence of shots shows the view along the canal with the boat, ‘Cool Jazz’, moored near the old canal exit in the 1st of the two, with the headroom of the old canal now much reduced by contemporary building. The ‘new’ canal formation is seen next looking up into ‘Brown’s Lock’, Rotherham Lock, with the lower gates closed and beyond, the new Portcullis Flood Gate, the old upper gates are also closed; the micro-wave tower in the background, above the lock gates, is situated in Boston Castle.
* The last 10 shots, 67-76, show views walking back from the north end to the south through the town centre once more. The first view shows the style of old metal-sided bridge over the canal and is reminiscent of the side of the old bridge over the exit from ‘Holmes Tail Goit’, that bridge recently replaced. The canal-side warehouse, latterly a pine furniture shop, stands at left, and is now a private residence. ‘The Bridge Inn’, with George St. on the left and the access to the town’s multi-storey car park, whilst on the right, the back of the town centre shopping area. The third shot has a ‘remarkable’, not, piece of sculpture on view, visible in the left corner, which was designed at Rotherham Art School in the late 1960’s and placed there, and representative of I know not what!! The building behind it used the be the Millgate Steak House and have to confess to going in there on one notable occasion in around 1970 or 1971! Although the Steak House has been closed for a long while, the metal, rotating, well, it used too, sculpture has survived but looks a bit of a mess… All Saints Parish Church stands on the right amid the March verdure. Looking back up Corporation St. in the next shote, and as mentioned earlier, the large ‘All Saints Buildings’ shopping area on the left was demolished in 2009 a while leaving just the separate section, visible at centre, still standing and home to several flourishing businesses. The old, and impressive, Talbot Lane Methodist Church can be seen in the background, now, partly ‘re-purposed’ but still open to visitors. A better view of the upper part of Corporation St. shows the new businesses, in the top section of ‘All Saints Buildings’ with their distinctive green finishes and refurbished windows. The grey building poking out from the right in the background, was one of the other cinemas in Rotherham, ‘The Essoldo’, then renamed ‘The Cannon", see-
It is now split as a nightclub and a snooker club. Opposite ‘All Saints Buildings’ on the right and another fine building, is the old ‘Co-Operative Store’ building, now with multi-purpose usage. Turning off to the right here, coming off Corporation St. and walking back along Market St. next to the River Don over-looking the Forge Island site, the last 5 views show the redevelopment work on-going to also re-purpose much of the fine old buildings between Domine Lane going off left and Main St. at the other side of the buildings on the right. A piece of work by the artist, "Jo Peel’ is at right and thankfully it appears to be surviving the current changes occuring all around it. The last views look up Main St. to Westgate and standing on the right, the old Y.E.B., ‘Yorkshire Electricity Board’ building with its ‘USE ELECTRIC’ neon sign under the arch at the top, once faintly visible, now not showing at all; ‘Revolution’, the club, appears to have usurped its place. The upper parts of all the buildings on the left are now under redevelopment as housing, this now being part of the ‘Westgate Quarter’ whilst the ground floor are all business; the far left one having once been the old G.P.O., General Post Office’. The space to the right, out-of-shot, is now a Postal Sorting office but was once the ‘Rabbit Hutch’, as Rotherham Westgate Station was once know as. It was the most convenient and central of the 3 Rotherham stations, Westgate, Masbrough & Central, but Westgate never developed into a serious looking building, its original wooden structures surviving until final closure in 1952. The scaffolding seen on the left at the top of Main St. is where the Rotherham Co-operative used to be and as the last shot in the video shows, my Mother’s ‘divi’, ‘Dividend Number’ was 14097 and in those days, it was a very respectable periodic payout.. As the last two shots show the whole area is now at last looking rather better than it has for a number of years, with businesses coming and going and changing the shop fronts and little happening on the upper two floors apart from the odd ‘club’ or bar type usage, which soon disappeared along with other attempts to make good use of the space; this all seems to be changing with the push coming from, what looks to be a new era brought on by the new multi-million pound, ‘Forge Island Development’…
Tagged: , Rotherham Central , Ickles , Forge Island , M.S.L.R. , Manchester Sheffield & Lincolnshire Railway , S&S.Y.N. , Sheffield & South Yorkshire Navigation , River Don , G.C.R. , Great Central Railway , R.U.F.C. , Rotherham United Football Club , New York Stadium , OHL Equipment , C.F. Booth Metal Recyclers Ltd. , Sheffield & Rotherham Railway , Westgate Branch , Rotherham Westgate Station , Holmes Tail Goit , Guest & Chrimes Ltd. , Holmes Chord , Alma Works , London Works , Brinsworth Iron & Wheel Works , Oxygen Works , Rotherham Lock , Don Street , Rotherham Abattoir , Rotherham Forge & Rolling Mills Co. Ltd. , Jo Peel Artist , Brown’s Cut , Club Envy , Tealby’s Takeaway , Steel, Peach & Tozer Ltd. , Bromley Sands , Bradmarsh , Barge Serenity , Barge Gratitude , Barge Harmony , Rotherham Weir , The Phoenix Hotel , Rank-Hovis Mcdougall Flour Mill , Joseph Green’s Timber Yard , L.A. Ratcliffe Stationers , Wilco Supermarket , Muskaan Indian Cuisine , Odeon Cinema , Oscar Deutsch , Chantry Bridge , The Bridge Inn , Nellie Denes , Millgate Steak House , All Saints Buildings , The Essoldo Cinema