Our Community Heritage Department has been delivering high quality community heritage, archaeology and history projects across the city since 2008.
Our mission statement is: " We love seeing people progress by helping them to have hands-on oportunities to experence local heritage"
We provide free volunteering opportunities on all our projects, and would love to hear from you if you would like to join in.
We are always open to new ideas and happy to share best practice.
We give talks and like to share our work at events.
Tinsley Time and Travel
Our two-year, Heritage Lottery funded project focuses on Tinsley, now a post industrial suburb on the northern edge of Sheffield. Using themes which have shaped the community since pre-history, those of transport, travel and change, the aim of the project is to engage residents and the wider community in a broader understanding of Tinsley’s heritage of transition and resilience.
A Quick History of Tinsley
Tinsley’s location above a bend in the River Don contributed to its use in prehistory, evidenced by the fascinating Bronze Age Boat found here in 1963: “the oldest British logboat from any river draining into the North Sea” (Prehistoric Yorkshire 52, 2015 pp 110) and likely Roman links to the nearby fort at Templebrough. Later, this location made Tinsley a vital part of the 18th and 19th century industrialisation of Sheffield.
First written mention of Tinsley is as ‘Tirneslawe’ or ‘Tineslawe’ in the Domesday Book of 1086. It gained local prominence post conquest when it became a thriving farming community as demonstrated in the Tinsley Court Rolls which date between 1284 and 1805. Tinsley was subfeuded to Tickhill post 1066 and only later came under the authority of Rotherham and then Sheffield. A turnpike road opened from Sheffield to Doncaster going through Tinsley in 1764.
The river was made navigable to Tinsley in the mid 18th century; goods would be transferred at Tinsley wharf. The opening of the Sheffield to Tinsley Canal in 1819 enabled more rapid industrialisation. In the same year Earl Fitzwilliam’s Tinsley Park Colliery opened, connected to the canal first by a wagon way and then a short railway. By 1900 Tinsley had two railway stations, some evidence of these remaining.
The current Supertram uses part of the old route. The area became a major industrial centre known for its collieries, iron, steel and wire works.In the mid 1950’s people, particularly from Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen, were encouraged to come to the UK to fill post- war labor shortages. More recently there is a significant growing population of Slovak and Czech Roma new arrivals.The transition from an agrarian to industrial settlement was slow. For over 200 years the farming community coexisted alongside the increasing industrialisation and the last farm in Tinsley closed only as recently as 1953.Our project has people at its heart. Tinsley’s story is one of resilience and adaptability to change, not only physical and economic change, but also changing populations.
People from different places have been coming to Tinsley, building and changing its identity, since prehistory, both making routes in and out and establishing roots within the community itself.About Tinsley Time and TravelTinsley Time and Travel is based around 9 key heritage milestones in Tinsley's past, all located within the project area. They are all of great local significance, each having a much wider impact on the development of the community. Each milestone covers a time of change in Tinsley and they all link to travel. Together they tell the story of Tinsley's changing identity.The project milestones cover different types of heritage including, archaeological objects, historic landscape, archives, historical sites, natural heritage and memories:-
- Settling Tinsley: Tinsley’s natural heritage
- Finding Romans in Tinsley
- Medieval and Early Modern Tinsley
- Remembering Rural Tinsley
- All roads lead to Tinsley
- One village with two Railway stations
- Tinsley’s Canal and Navigating the River Don
- Industrial Tinsley
- Gaining and losing: The coming of the M1