Friday, 18 March 2011


We have confirmation. Viewpoint Number 3 is go.

Pictures by Gemma Thorpe.

The maps are out, the route is up, and the flag is standing proud.

You can find your map in one of these places. Once you've got one in your hand, head to Corporation Street/The Riverside Pub to start the walk.

En route, you'll find plenty of markers to help guide the way.

Plus, there's some familiar looking graffiti.

At the top, we've installed our third flag. As usual, the pole is made from a branch we found cut down in a forest. The flag was kindly stitched by Kirsteen at Syd and Mallorys.

They don't tend to hang around for very long. We don't know where they go. Are they removed by overzealous Streetforce operatives? Bored youth? Rival art-led imaginary tourist boards? Who can say.

All we know is that, at 14.19 today, the SPD surveillance satellite (JARVIS1) took this grainy image. The flag was still standing.

Thursday, 10 March 2011


Our third viewpoint map is out now.

We can't lie. This one is a little bleak.

Viewpoint No. 3 is Pye Bank, an ex-council estate, close to the city centre, on a hill above the river. The buildings have all been demolished, but for some reason all the infrastructure was left behind. Today, all that's up there are empty roads, steps, paths and bricks.

The start point of the route is a bridge over the River Don, at the bottom of Corporation Street. There's a secret old bridge here, blocked off at one end. It looks like this.

Once you get up to Pye Bank itself, you'll find a strong Mad Max vibe going on. Roadblocks, rubble, wasteland. It's easy to feel like you're the last person on Earth. We wouldn't recommend going up to Pye Bank alone. The isolation can feel pretty intimidating. But the view is incredible.

The map includes a cut-out-and-keep roadblock, as a memento of your day. If you don't want to cut your map up, why not photocopy it at your local Tesco?


This is what Pye Bank used to look like: massive. Concrete flats and wavy roofed houses. You can find stories on the internet of what it was like to live here. The stories are pretty much the same as the ones you read about Park Hill, or Hyde Park, or any of the other post-war estates, built with too much optimism and not enough money. They're hard stories to keep reading.

Funnily enough, these buildings still exist on some maps. You can even demolish them yourself. Click here for a top down view. And then click here to see the same space without buildings.

Yes Pye Bank is bleak. But it's also strangely calm. In the gaps where the houses and the car parks used to be, the weeds are taking over. Pye Bank is reverting into what it was before Sheffield came along. A scrubby hill, folding into other scrubby hills, above a river, on the edge of the peak district.

Enjoy the view.