Museums in Sheffield
Young or old, a visit to a museum can be a fun but informative
way to spend the day. Whether you like to peek into the
past or seek out something interesting, Sheffield has
a number of museums to excite and entertain.
Probably the museum most relevant to Sheffield and its
past is the Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet [map] .
This 18th century steel works has been preserved as a living history museum that gives visitors an insight
into what life was like in traditional steel works.
Highlights here include the only surviving example of
a crucible steel furnace, a steam engine built in 1855
and the workers’ cottages amongst others.
Delving into Sheffield’s industrial past in a more
conventional way is Kelham Island Museum [map].
Located on a man-made island in one of the most historic
parts of Sheffield, this museum uses exhibits, working
machinery and activities to bring this city’s history
Originally opened in 1982, this museum has recently undergone
a major refurbishment. However the museum has managed
to retain its ability to engage young people and
provide a fascinating fact or two for you to share with
friends or colleagues.
Sheffield is not only known for museums about its industrial
past. The city is also home to another museum which has
gained an international following since it was opened
by enthusiasts in 1984. Housed in the city’s first
purpose-built police/fire station, Sheffield’s
Fire and Police Museum [map] documents the history of these two professions through
special exhibitions and artefacts dating back to the 16th
century. Over the years this collection has grown steadily
as visitors from around the world have donated
their fire service memorabilia to this volunteer-run
museum. You can find this unique city museum on West Bar,
about a 10-minute walk from the city centre shopping streets.
Also not far from the centre of town is the University
of Sheffield, which is home to the Turner Museum of
Glass is one of those things taken for granted in everyday
life, yet it's something most of us come into contact
with, this museum highlights this material’s versatility
and “celebrates the skill and artistry of glassmakers”.
Founded in 1943 this museum has nearly 400 pieces of 19th
and 20th century glass on permanent display including
Bohemian, Czechoslovakian, Scandinavian, French, Italian
and Dutch glass as well as Roman and Syrian Glass. There’s
also a glass fibre wedding dress, which just goes
to show that the uses of glass are not always clear!
Another museum in the city to try isthe Museum of Anaesthesia [map] ,
which has one of the largest historical collections of
anaesthesia apparatus and equipment in the UK. You can
find these displayed at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital [map] and the Northern General Hospital [map]. There’s
also the Traditional Heritage Museum [map] on Eccleshall Road, which houses artefacts dating from
1850 related to trades that went on in Sheffield, including
intricately engraved cutlery, shoe making equipment and
a chemist shop. Finally there's the Sheffield Bus Museum [map] close to Meadowhall, which may be of interest to transport
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