It’s not the end, but just the beginning!

 Hello everyone!

On Friday our team presented our work to our peers at the University of Sheffield.  Our project was one of 14 being worked on by groups of masters students from the Sheffield School of Architecture and we had a great time seeing what all the other teams have been up to.  If you are interested you can find out more here:

I would highly recommend any organisation to get involved in the University’s live projects scheme as it is a great way for us students to learn, and a great way to help push a real world project forward.


Going back to Friday; it was a really good day and the whole team was really pleased with how the presentation went.  I speak for the team in saying thank you to Dave, Olivia, Rhys and Ross for their hard work in producing such an clear, well thought out and exciting presentation!  I am sure they reciprocate those thanks to the rest of the team on their hard work on producing all of the documents/reports/models for the project.  We will hopefully post some of our actual work up soon, including a recording of our presentation in it’s entirety so anyone who couldn’t make it will get a chance to see what it is we have been up to.


photo credits: Chris Jones

It really has been a great project, and we have had a great amount of fun doing it; we could not have asked for a more challenging yet exciting project!  It has been great meeting so many people throughout the 6 weeks, and we would like to the thank those from the Heritage Railway and the DVLP who came along to the presentation as well.

Lastly we would like to thank Glen, Christine and Steve for their continued support throughout the project, and for being such great clients!  If we have managed to express even a small proportion of their enthusiasm within our final work then I am confident that this project will have a bright future!

Although this is officially the end of our team involvement in the project I know that every one of us feels a great connection with the site and the project, and we will definitely be keeping in touch, after all this is not the end but just the beginning!

Sam Diston



Day 38, The final day in studio!

Today was our final day in studio!  It’s been a very very busy day, and of course there are always a few last minute glitches to overcome, but we have overcome them and are well prepared for the big presentation tomorrow!

We may have also consumed our own body weight in crisps and biscuits, but that is not always such a bad thing!  Unfortunately tidying up our studio space will not be quite so much fun.


We are all really looking forward to tomorrow, the final presentation will be a great way to celebrate all the hard work which has been put in by everyone involved.  In tomorrows blog post we will include a bit more detail about what we have been up to, we hope you will all really like our ideas!

Sam Diston


Day 37, Photography and filming

Today was a really fun day!  All of our final documents are nearing completion, so a few members of the team have spent today helping out with the filming.  We headed into the artificial sky (essentially a room with mirrors on all four walls), this creates really even light over the models to make things clearer.


We have used the model to create a colour coded masterplan, which we will be made into a time-lapse style graphic to help explain the complex phasing required on this site.


Tomorrow we will be pulling everything together, doing lots of proof reading and getting everything printed!

Sam Diston


Day 36, Tutor meeting & document development

Today was a long but productive day.  Everyone is working very hard to get all our work done for the end of the week (with even a few late nights!)


Today we met with our tutor, JP Walker and ran through the draft of our final presentation.  This was the first opportunity for a lot of the team to see the presentation in it’s entirety.  As a team we all really happy with it, but of course there is always room for improvement!


The document team have also been pushing very hard, with section 2 complete, and sections 1 & 3 coming along very well.  The challenge for the team is in collating all of our research and ideas into a concise and coherent format.

The video has also been progressing well, but you will have to wait a little longer before you see that!

It’s really not long now, we just want to make sure we do justice to this amazing site!

Sam Diston


Day 35, The final push!

Today was a very busy day.  The team met together in the morning to run through everyone’s work from the weekend.  It is key over the next few days that we communicate continuously in order to keep our final work clear and consistent.


The presentation team have spent today producing the slides for our public presentation on Friday.  The video team have been working on the phasing diagrams which will be within the short film.  The document team have been integrating all of our work over the last few weeks into the final strategy report document, which we are aiming to finish within the next couple of days.  Below you can see a draft page from the final report.


Anyone is welcome to come and join us at our public presentation, to the clients as well as the Sheffield School of Architecture.

Detail of public presentation:

Friday 7th November at 14:30

Lecture Theatre 2,  Medical School,

Royal Hallamshire Hospital, Beech Hill Rd, S10 2RX

Sam Diston


Day 32, Illuminating the headgear!

Yesterday evening was certainly a bit different!

A large part of this project has been about increasing the awareness of this site within the local community, encouraging people to engage in the rich history as well as future potential of this site.

Last night we took a step in that direction by illuminating the iconic headgear on the site, tying in with Halloween events going on up and down the valley.

We hope you got a chance to see this spectacle in person, but if not then these photos certainly do it justice.


View of the headgear from on site.


View of the headgear from Wath Road/B6097


View of the headgear from the Trans Pennine Trail, it really stood out on the hillside!

We hope that this will not be a one off event, and would love for this to become a usual sight against the nights sky over Hemingfield.  This will only be possible with the sustainable redevelopment of this site, which is what we have be working towards during our time on this project.

More importantly this project will only be possible through the efforts of the local community and enthusiastic volunteers, some of whom we have had the pleasure of meeting already.

Thank you all for your encouragement over the last five weeks.  We have just one more week and then our involvement in this project will be complete; we hope that the illumination of the headgear inspires more people to get involved in this intriguing and thrilling scheme.

Sam Diston


Day 30, Sketching, Model making & client meeting

Today was another really worthwhile day for the team!  Dave and Olivia went back to Elsecar to meet with one of our clients Christine.  During the meeting the guys ran through the event at the weekend and our ideas going forward.  It was a really positive session and we now have even more ideas on what we can deliver at the end of the project.

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Back in Sheffield the rest of the team carried on with all the main tasks.


 We produced a rough matrix to help us organised our ideas into phases of the project & the scale of the intervention.  We will use this matrix as a basis from which to structure our drawings/documents.


We have also begun work on even more models!  These are being made at a larger scale so that we can add more detail into them about our specific architectural ambitions.


Make sure to check back on this blog very soon as we are planning a very exciting spectacle in the very near future!

Sam Diston


Day 29, Starting on our deliverables & developing our initial designs.

We have now reorganised the team loosely into a document team, a model team, a video team and a design team.

The design team have been working on consolidating all of our research and applying what we have learnt from the community.  A lot of our ideas revolve around creating a phased strategy to redevelop the site as and when it becomes possible.

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The document team have begun work on our final document, which will be handed over to our clients at the end of our involvement in the project.  We aim to make this document as useful and informative as possible, so that it can be used throughout the future of the project.

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This document will outline our research and processes of development, leading on to our ideas (both strategic and architectural).  We will also be developing our physical models so that they can be used  in the long term to help explain the scheme.

Sam Diston


Day 28, Weekend debrief & next steps

Monday was another good day in the studios.  In the morning the whole team met to discuss the weekend; we were all really happy with how the event had gone!

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We also spent the morning looking into our feedback from the weekend event, there are a lot of great ideas which we would like to include into the scheme if we can.

271014 team meeting

We also discussed our next steps, planning out our final documents/products to give to the clients at the end of our involvement.  We also planned out our final presentation (to our clients and the architecture school) which will take place next Friday, 7th November.

Sam Diston