Sheffield’s original cutlery works gains new lease of life

The oldest most complete example of a purpose-built cutlery works in Sheffield, The Globe Works, is entering a new phase of life

The Grade II* listed, large purpose-built and integrated cutlery works in Sheffield, The Globe Works, is the earliest known surviving of its kind and is entering a new phase in its life as local entrepreneur transforms the building into a hub for Sheffield businesses.

The works, built in the 1820s, by Henry and William Ibbotson for their edge tool business, in partnership with Jonathan Roebuck, known as  ‘Ibbotson & Roebuck’, is the best surviving example of an early works associated with Sheffield’s famous metal manufacturing and working trades. Despite being saved from destruction and partially renovated in the 1970s and 80s, a large amount of the building remains dilapidated.

Renovation works by Matt Davison of Davison Property Investments – a former tenant at the Globe Works – have begun, with the aim of creating spaces for a range of businesses, including hospitality and event venues.

Matt maintains that the history of the building and its role in Sheffield’s famous steel industry will be at the core of the redevelopment:

“This building is an industrial gem and part of our city’s important past as a world-leading centre for manufacturing,” says Matt. “The heritage of the Globe Works was one of the first things that drew me to it. In our new phase of regeneration here, we’ll be working closely with historic building specialists to make sure that the heritage is sensitively managed and is given a new lease of life. My vision is for this to be a truly inspirational place to work and socialise.”

Works are set to begin in earnest once Coronavirus restrictions are lifted, with opportunities for visitors to enjoy updates and behind-the-scenes tours of the historic property. Prior to development works, leading heritage organisation, Wessex Archaeology, will be undertaking further research to uncover more about the history of the building. “We’ll be looking into the building’s history, analysing its fabric, and undertaking research to understand more about what makes this place so unique,” explains Lucy Marston, Principal Heritage Consultant. “We already know a huge amount about this building’s rich history and the important part it played in Sheffield’s past. However, we’re hoping that our work will draw out some of the unknown and more personal stories about the lives of people who lived and worked here.”