Record of Fulwood History Group Meeting 18/4/24


Present: D.A., J.B., A.C., M.L., C.M., D.M., J.P. & K. P.

  • Discussion around Fulwood Society documents over period 1970s-90s which are being looked through by group members: newsletters, letters, photos, press cuttings etc. E.g.
    1. Lost Dore – Fulwood Path 1977
    2. Wire Mill Dam boating (1975) & Hallam Ski Club Activities (1972 & 82) – useful for this year’s Heritage Open Days focus
    3. The 12” to a mile maps reproduced by society – AC shared one of these from c.1951; the number of sports grounds noted, even in the rural, farming outskirts of Fulwood; considered the possible reasons for this
    4. Fulwood Old Road coffee house and item relating to Hewlett 1895
    5. Richardson 1931 booklet History of Fullwood: page 5 recounts old route to Fulwood with suggestion that Birks Green was situated at Whiteley Lane; indicates fluidity of places and how they’re identified – a recurring theme
  • Stumperlowe Hall in the 1920s was divided in two; discussion about use of land here and elsewhere in Fulwood and how it was sold off
  • Historic England’s Missing Pieces project: see also link on FHG Facebook page; JP gave great example of a potential contribution to this,(house with listed railings on Taptonville Rd); each member of the group has much to offer to this and it’s a valuable way of recording valuable local information which can be used now and in the future – plug from JB!
  • Fulwood History website – there seem to be two: KP has since clarified this
  • Friends of Ecclesall Woods event on July 13th to be held at café/Discovery Centre area: ‘What have you Found?’ JB asked for volunteers if anyone interested in covering stall for a couple of hours
  • DA reflected on Ranmoor Society talk given by Catherine Warr on 16th April: A Yorkshire Year: Folklore, customs and traditions and how the creation of folklore, myths and legends is a continuous process – the Mi Amigo story is an example of this; see also Hallam University’s Centre for Contemporary Legend
  • DA reminded group about Fulwood Church archive: KP/DA to contact FL to arrange a meeting with group
  • Organising walks instead of/in addition to indoor meetings in coming months e.g. on the trails of the Oak Brook and the Griffin Sick
  • DM passed next batch of Fulwood Society documents on to JB and AC to look at over the coming month
  • Next meeting: 16th May 2024

Extract from papers relating to the Fulwood Society


The Fulwood Society came into existence in the 1970s with the object of acting as a voice for conservation in the Fulwood area. Fulwood History Group has recently acquired the Society’s archive and members have been working through the material. This is a transcript of one of the items. I have added the notes.

The item

J H Hewlett writing to his parishioners on April 1st1895 after a terrible winter when 10 parishioners died between 1st January and 31st March praises them for how they put aside their differences and prejudices to support each other through the worst of the weather when the temperature rarely rose above freezing for several weeks in February. He goes on to say: –

I often hear news from Pendeen and some have passed away from among our friends there since we left in December. I should like to include the Pendeen Families in sending this message of sympathy and remembrance from all at Fulwood Vicarage and I shall post copies of our Quarterly Messenger not only to Cornwall but also to South Africa to some of the good, brave fellows who have had to go from their loved homes in Pendeen to seek a livelihood in that far country.

Being Chairman of the Committee of the “Fulwood Coffee House and Inn” I have much pleasure in announcing that our seven year effort will now be carried forward by Miss Fanny Bower who, as Mr Dixon’s Tenant has become the Landlady of the Coffee House. I desire to express the hope that great success will attend her on her return to the parish and I trust that every well-wisher will try to do something to help bring about the success.

I desire also to express my gratitude for all the help given in the past years by all the Members of the Committee, more especially to my valued Friend Mr. W. W. Harrison without whose unfailing interest and unfaltering judgment the whole effort could not have prospered as it has done.


  1. Fanny (Emma) Bower had been a parlour maid at Stumperlowe Hall, the home of Henry Isaac Dixon. She was keen to develop the Café, announcing in April 1895 that

“Miss BOWER begs to inform the public that she has taken the above old-established house, and will provide TEAS, &c on the shortest notice. Special arrangements for large Parties. First-class Sitting and Bed Rooms. Also large Clubroom. N.B.—Open on Sundays”

Emma had left the Coffee Shop by 1901. No further records of Emma have been found

  1. Arthur and Ann Wostenholm had taken on the Coffee Shop according to the 1901 census. The Wostenholms stayed at the Coffee Shop until about 1936. Anne died at the Coffee House in 1936 and Arthur moved to Frickley Road where he died in 1952.
  2. William Wheatcroft Harrison (born 1830) was a manufacturer of silver and elctro-plate according to the 1891 census. He and his family – his wife Eliza and daughters Ellen and Lucy – lived on Belgrave Road. By 1901 they had moved to Park Avenue. William died in 1904.

Gleanings from the Court Rolls

Back in the late 1990s, Robert Hallam who lived in British Columbia contacted me. He had been researching the knotty problem of Waltheof’s Aula. Some writers had suggested it was located at Burnt Stones, others that it was on the site of the Castle by the river Don. Hallam thought he had found eveidence that the location was on the site of the present day Hallam School.

Our conversations, including at a restuarant when he visited Sheffield, got me intrigued and I spent a few hours at the Local Studies Library looking through printed transcripts of the Court Rolls. From these I wrote up my findings which were duly filed in the attic where they lay for about a quarter of a century.

A few weeks ago, I came across the paper and research notes which were all paper based. I have scanned the document and corrected any OCR errors I’ve found. I have not carried out further research apart from looking at the registers of Sheffield Cathedral which are online and adding dates of birth, marriage and death for the few people in the trees that I am reasonably confident are the same as those named in the register.

I hope that those who know far more about the period (approximately 1550 – 1650) will post comments adding further details and, of course, highlight errors in the original paper.

The paper does confirm that Stumperlowe has been inhabited and farmed for many centuries and the names of the families living in the Tudor and Jacobean periods are still existent today.

The paper is here: Tudor Stumpelowe

Richardson’s Story of Fulwood

This is a small booklet written by Henry Richardson and published in 1931. We don’t know why he wrote it. In its 8 pages, he recounts how some of the older buildings came into existence.

John Henry Richardson was an accountant.He was born in 1862 in Sheffield to Henry, a coal merchant, and Eliza. As a young man he found employment with a firm of Drapers, likely to be J R Robert Ltd with premises at Townhead Street. He married Lavinia Case at the Weston Street Chapel on March 20th 1889 and their first child was born  in 1891. at the turm of the century, Richarson had ceased using his first name and was a cashier at the Dreapery store. The family, now with 3 children was living on Crookesmoor Road.

Ten years later, the family was and Nethergreen and in 1912 they moved into No 139 Crimicar Lane. After Henry’s death in 1932, Lavinia continued to lived in  the house, along with her daughter who was a teacher.

It is possible that writing the pamplet was a retirement project for Henry

I have scanned the document and reproduced it, using different images where approriate but keeping much of the original wording.

The booklet is here

Gilcrest Wood

This area of local green space has had a number of names over the centuries: maps from the 1700s indicate it was known as Goulhirst or Gallhirst, (perhaps linking to Goole/Gold as in Goole Green). More recently, the area was named by local people as  Bluebell Wood, The Meadow and simply The Field. Its official name, according to the local authority, is Crimicar Lane Open Space. In 2013, a local group formed to take care of this precious area and, in keeping with historical records, have adopted the name Gilcrest Wood and Meadow. For more information, here’s a link to their website:


Record of FHG Meeting 21/3/24


Present: D.A., J.B., A.C., M.L., C.M., D.M., J.P. & K. P.

  1. General discussion around trails, tracks, holloways, desire paths with reference to recent talk given on Packhorse Routes of the Rivelin Area by Melanie Fitzgerald of Heritage Highways; also discussed current measures taken to manage water around Hallamshire, Chorley Roads and Slayleigh area; local brickworks and quarries – see Ranmoor Historical Society notes for August 2022
  2. AC shared Upper Hallam sections of Scurlfield’s 1986 reconstructed map of John Harrison’s 1637 An Exact and Perfect Survey of the Manor of Sheffield; many interesting features were pored over, e.g., Burnt Stones – theories around name relate to William the Conqueror and (more likely), that iron smelting took place in the area and Hell Hole – see page 54 of Hall’s More of the Mayfield Valley (1974); Link to Scurfield’s full article in the Yorkshire Archaeological Journal, vol 58, pp147-173
  3. AC shared Ronksley’s 1908 transcription of Harrison’s 1637 survey
  4. JB asked group to add to FHG website post about Stumperlowe Mansions visit on 10th March
  5. AC shared map from early 19th century(?) showing area around Ringinglow Road which fell into Derbyshire at that time
  6. Brooklands Tennis Club – formerly at numbers 45/47 Brooklands Avenue; KP exploring history of site; led to discussion of newspapers/journalism, focus of articles and how this evolved over turn of 19th/20th centuries
  7. CM shared article he’s written about Fulwood Skiing Club: he will send it to ML for publication on FHG website
  8. HoD – sport and recreation in Fulwood 
      1. Hallam Grange Tennis Club
      2. Fulwood Sports Club
      3. Brooklands Tennis Club
      4. Dixons’ and Rogers’ sports grounds opposite the Guild Hall
      5. Bowling Green House
      6. Old Fulwood Road – tennis courts and sports associated with Hammer & Pincers
      7. Forge Dam – skating, swimming and diving
      8. Wire Mill Dam – model boat racing; concrete blocks which were used to support staging for this are still in situ
      9. See Ranmoor Historical Society notes August 2022 for article on this subject

9. DM shared the collection of Fulwood Society documents he introduced in last month’s meeting; JB and AC borrowing them until next meeting

10. KP asked about stone markers he’d come across on a footbath leading between Cottage Lane and Ringinglow Road inscribed with letters SEO and EH; referred to as boundary markers on p. 99 of JB’s Dog Walks book – perhaps connected with nearby reservoirs; also curious markers embedded in field adjoining ‘Waggy’s Field’ on Whiteley Woods Road: Any info on the purposes of these would be great

Next meeting: 18th April 2024

A visit to Stumperlowe Mansions 10th March 2024

On a Sunday morning in March, we enjoyed a tour of Stumperlowe Mansions on Stumperlowe Lane. This was organised by a member of the group and thanks to him and to his family member who did an excellent job of showing us round.

Stumperlowe Mansions was built in the late 1930s and its architecture, like that of several houses nearby, reflects the style of the period. The development was aimed at short-stay, middle-class tenants and seemed to function somewhere between a hotel and residential flats. MoD officials were known to have lived there in its early years, keeping an eye on manufacture of arms at Sheffield’s steelworks. The Mansions were built to the latest specification and as such, gas and electricity were installed, a feature which was just becoming standard in the 1930s. [1]


We were shown the entrance foyer first. On each side of the of the entrance, there is an office where the porter would have sat, rather like a university hall of residence.

Opposite this and now boarded over, there is a lift with high-quality fixtures and fittings. The building as whole was noted for the quality of its furnishings which were supplied by local prestigious companies such as Cole Brothers.

In its heyday, the residents enjoyed communal facilities such as a restaurant and bar, as well as room-service.


The view from the garden area at the rear of the building highlights elements of  modernism , a movement which had an increasing influence on architecture from the 1930s: the symmetrical design of the building, the lack of ornament, the section of flat roof, the windows with their glass held in steel frames and the use of concrete and style of brick. Another notable feature was the garages, a block of which has become derelict. This indicates how even before WWII, private motor car usage was becoming widespread amongst the suburban middle class.

The old wall of the vicarage is still standing, marking a boundary between Stumperlowe Mansions and Newfield Court, although some of it is has collapsed.

Although there is little ornamentation, the four sets of balcony railings at the front of the building incorporate a figure ‘S’ detail. The design of Stumperlowe Mansions, with its south-facing balconies and sun terrace, might have been inspired by glamourous English riviera apartments overlooking the sea, but this does require a leap of imagination on a damp, grey Fulwood morning.



Record of FHG meeting 15/2/24

Record of FULWOOD HISTORY GROUP MEETING 15th February 2024

Present: D.A., J.B., M.L., C.M., D.M., J.P. & K. P.

  • KP shared George Cunningham painting depicting Brookhouse Hill1920; discussion of its houses, shops and cottages
  • DM shared selection of documents from the Fulwood Society which have come into his possession; included minutes of meetings, map, writing of Muriel Hall; decision made that after FHG members have had opportunity to look through the papers, they will be passed on to Sheffield City Archives as a revokable loan
  • KP shared 1908 map of Nether Green shops area; sparked DM memory of Woodward’s Electrical shop from 1940s/50s
  • Forge Dam boating lake rescue: photo shared by DA and people involved remembered by DM
  • Stumperlowe Mansions – see December meeting notes – ML organising visit for 10th March
  • Heritage Open Days September 2024: theme is Routes, Networks, Connections e.g. transport routes, communication networks, trade unions and social clubs; agreed FHG theme of Fulwood’s sports clubs, beginning at Hallam Grange Sports Club, and finishing at Old Fulwood Road
  • Mi Amigo Flypast 22nd February; discussion of the memorial
  • ML told us about U3A archaeology group he is organising; led to JP telling us about Broomhill Library’s Percy Caine garden and Uni of Sheffield’s Roots and Futures project
  • KP suggested coffee mornings which could be way of reaching out to community
  • Next meeting: 21st February 2024

The Ladies School

This was a small private school run by Sarah and Mary Rhodes who were the daughters of Hugh Rhodes, the minister of the Independent Chapel on Chapel Lane. Sarah had been born in Buxton and Mary who was eight years younger than her sister was born in Sheffield. By 1865, and probably earlier (in 1861 the sisters described themselves as ‘school mistress’), they had established the school at the ‘Chapel House’. The Chapel did not function as a place of worship between 1873 when Hugh Rhodes died and 1899 so the school might have provided an alternative use. Although named as the Ladies School in the 1881 census, the Rhodes sisters did not use this title when they advised readers of the Independent in January that they would ‘re-open their school’ on Tuesday 18th of that month and that they had a vacancy for two boarders[1]. They used this phrase in their announcements that were published just before the start of each term.

The census of 1871 recorded 6 girls between the ages of 10 and 14

The House and Chapel

The chapel had a school room and a house for the minister and his family but neither are large, so the house, at least, must have been quite crowded on census night 1881 when eight scholars slept there, along with the two sisters, their nephew Sydney and a 14 year old servant.

There is a gap in the newspaper announcements between September 1889 and September 1893 although Mary and Sarah continued to live in the Chapel House. The last entry is year later, in 1899 when Sarah was approaching 75 years of age and Mary was 60, so perhaps managing 6 vivacious girls was getting too much for them.

Perhaps the development of State Education (e.g. the Fulwood Board School) had reduced the demand for schools like this. In their notice in the Telegraph in January 1899 they said that they “Do not object to take Delicate Children” which suggests the sisters were not recruiting as many pupils as previously. This may explain why they began to let rooms in the Chapel House. Their notice in the paper in 1897 offering to accommodate bicycles suggests short stay lets, perhaps an early form of Airbnb! By 1904, they were looking for long term lets, offering 2 bedrooms and a sitting room in the house which was only 15 minutes’ walk from the terminus at Nethergreen!

Sarah and Mary Rodes disappear from the records from the middle years of the decade by which time the Chapel had become a home to a vibrant congregation. It was the location for ‘Pleasant Sunday Afternoons’ but that another story!

[1] Sheffield Daily Telegraph 08 January 1881

Record of FHG meeting 18/1/24


Present: D. A., J.B., A. C., M.L., J.P. & K. P.

  1. Website payment settled with thanks to AC
  2. Sheffield Heritage Fair 2025: KP suggested combined stall with Ranmoor Society
  3. Heritage Open Days September 2024: theme is Routes, Networks, Connections e.g. transport routes, communication networks, trade unions and social clubs; initial ideas shared e.g.
    • guided walk with suitability for groups of people
    • based around shops
    • Forge Dam
    • Woofindin area
    • A walk round the block with FHG
    • Where roads/lanes meet (e.g. Fulwood Road, Brookhouse Hill area)
    • Fulwood’s lost greens
    • Fulwood’s sports clubs

4.  A.C. shared c1935 map of area which sparked discussion around:

  • development of northern suburbs of Fulwood
  • Lodge Moor Hall
  • the Black Brook and Elliot stone
  • the Oak Brook
  • Crimicar Lane Hospital
  • sewage/waterworks across the area

5. KP. shared information about Gilcrest wood – building on last month’s discussion:

  • plans relating to land purchases around 1900s with view to building development which wasn’t realised
  • Castlewood Drive area development in 1930s
  • variations in naming for this area – 1700s Goulhirst, Gallhirst and Gilcrest and links to Goole/Gold
  • air raid shelter built into the slope of the land which was lost beneath 1980s housing on Canterbury Crescent

6. Involvement of Rotherham-based solicitors in land transactions noted

7. JB. shared extract from Reminiscences of Henry Coward (1919) which recalls performance for Plimsoll at Whiteley Woods Hall, probably around 1866

8. A.C. shared photos showing Fulwood area in past times

9. Everyone agreed wording to accompany AC’s article in Fulwood Messenger; led to discussion of Fulwood Chapel and when it was a boarding school run by the Misses Rhodes around 1880s

10. Website development

11. Everyone encouraged to contribute articles etc. to website

12. Reviewing chapters of KP’s book

13. Next meeting: 15th February 2024