Things to Do in Sheffield

Creative Tourist

Once branded by George Orwell as “the ugliest town in the Old World”, Sheffield’s past and its cultural present are founded on one thing: the steel industry. During the 19th century, Sheffield witnessed explosive growth, the city we see today shaped by its industrial prosperity of old. So its leafy suburbs, for example, were purposely built up hill so that domestic residences would sit above the smog-blanketed centre of foundries and furnaces.

The cutlery works of Sheffield’s past have found new purpose in driving forward the city’s creative life; many now house galleries, independent shops and artist studios. Sheffield’s current status as the country’s greenest city is also, in some incongruous way, due to its industrial heritage: open spaces like the Botanical Gardens were designed to offer Victorian residents a much-needed breath of fresh air. While other cities bustle between high rises and shopping precincts, Sheffield is a place to pause and look around, whether inwards from its hillsides, over spires, chimneys and curling valleys, or outwards from the city centre, to the breeze and birdsong of the moorland that continues to inspire so many artists, designers and makers.

Discover our top picks

The Last King of Scotland at Sheffield Crucible
Theatre 27 September–19 October 2019, from £15.00

The Last King of Scotland at Sheffield Crucible

A world premiere stage adaptation by Steve Waters of the award-winning novel by Giles Foden.

Exhibitions 5 July–24 August 2019, FREE

RESOLVE Collective: The Garage at S1 Artspace

Interdisciplinary design collective RESOLVE will transform the gallery at S1 Artspace into a ‘living archive’ that reveals and records our emotional responses to the city.

Sheffield District Guides

London Road & the Antiques Quarter, Sheffield

Centuries ago, London Road was a thoroughfare used by farmers taking their cattle to market,…

Kelham Island, Sheffield

The engraving “Made in Sheffield” continues to stand for quality on knives and forks around…

Hunter’s Bar, Sheffield

On 31 October 1884, the gatekeeper at Hunter’s Bar toll-house requested the city’s last ever…

Devonshire Quarter, Sheffield

Directly west of the city centre, the Devonshire Quarter comes alive both by day and…

City Centre, Sheffield

Welcoming visitors as soon as they step off the train to Sheffield is the Sheffield…

Broomhill and Crookes, Sheffield

To the west of the city, the suburbs of Broomhill and Crookes, though small, contain…

Things to do right now

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a row of 4 historical tudor figures that you may encounter on this outdoor trail at speke hall
Families 20 July–1 September 2019, FREE

Trailblazing Tudors at Speke Hall

the night sky as explored in the planetarium shows
Education 1 January–30 December 2019, from £2

Planetarium Shows at World Museum Liverpool

The Den at Stalybridge Civic Hall
Families 13–24 August 2019, All tickets are pay what you decide, available from Stalybridge Civic Hall.

The Den at Stalybridge Civic Hall