At long last something is happening with Sheffield’s Webb Patent Sewer Gas lamps. It’s not an ideal outcome but it’s the best we’re going to get. Amey are to restore 23 of them (makes a change from sawing things down) and they will be working with a company called Pudsey Diamond who are based in Andover, Hampshire. This excellent company have devised a solar powered LED unit which replicates the flickering of the original lamps and which will operate for approx. 4 hours per night to give the impression of real sewer gas. Four of the original lamps will continue to burn real gas and the long term hope is that the others may follow suit in the future. The lamps were originally designed to burn off sewer gas in areas which were prone to build ups of such gas, and whilst this is no longer a problem, it’s nice to have a reminder of the period in which they were installed (1914-1935).
Webb Sewer Gas Destructor Lamp on Alderson Rd facing Abbeydale Rd
These lamps are incredibly rare and Sheffield is very fortunate to house such a collection which is of such national and international importance. Most are Grade II listed and whilst some survivors are missing their lamp heads these are to be faithfully replicated and all will be restored to their original colour scheme. New lamps are already up and running at Worrall and Norton and Sheffield Council are to be commended for their joint effort with Historic England to restore these treasures to their former glory. Fingers crossed that all will eventually be natural gas powered and we won’t need the fake mellow glow.