If you fancy a bit of Urbexing (and I do, at some point), but don’t have the guts for it, spend an afternoon, like we did, snooping around Castle Market.
In my mind, from the exterior, Castle Market is something of a monstrosity. A ridiculous hodge-podge of ugly concrete and faded signage, closed walkways and bridges and dingy staircases. Plenty of dark corners bring to mind a place you don’t want to spend much time after dark.
Go inside then, and it’s another world. A bustling labyrinth where even regular visitors like myself struggle to find a) the toilets or b) the way out, it’s pretty clear that Sheffield City Council gave up on this place a long time ago. For every thriving small shop there’s an empty unit or in fact, a whole closed off section. The entire block upstairs from Wilkinsons is completely blocked off, and yet a peek through the window from this upstairs walkway:
Shows all the frontages are still there. This place, though it looks derelict, is right next to a still open hair salon (though one where not one of the appliances looked less than twenty years old).
The ever vibrant ‘SPAG’ – Sheffield Pensioners Action Group, who have been heavily involved in Sheffield Anti Cuts Alliance and the Trades Council, have their office up there. The Credit Union next door is now closed, and has moved to Commercial Street. I love their sign, and their motto.
Also dead keen on this sign for Sharon’s. It really is a bit of a time warp. Horlicks, Dripping cake and boiled ham. Yorkshire phrases like ‘pop’ also go down a treat. I’d love to bring one of my American friends here to see if they could decipher it…
I liked this little guy, guarding the ‘nanas.
There’s a much more comprehensive write up of the market, and lots more pictures too, check out this great article over at ‘Nothing to See Here‘ or the photos of the same author on Flickr. Edit: For a great review of the food market (brilliant by the way, and MAHOOSIVE pumpkins for just £2.49!), see this great post by Clare Tollick, aka FeastAndGlory.
I’ll be going back soon for more pictures and snooping around.
Rosie @ LS