The magnificent Green Lane Works down at Kelham Island is being currently restored and the star of the site is the Grade II* listed entrance arch and prominent clock tower. These were added to the complex in 1860 although Hoole & Company had been manufacturing ornamental iron grates and fenders there since 1795. The high quality designs of their artisans and craftsmen actually won the company a Mèdaille d’Honneur at the Paris Exhibition of 1855. The impressive clock tower had a lurch on it prior to the restoration and this feature has been retained, restored and incorporated so don’t worry that it may fall on your head! After all, you wouldn’t dream of straightening Chesterfield’s famous spire.
To the rear of the site and alongside the River Don and Millsands goit stands the Riverside Building (what else would you call it) and this is to be restored creating 21 apartments. However there is a small derelict building, previously used by Tyzacks, between the two main buildings which shares party walls and that is the subject of this article. It’s a very simple building of no merit in a very bad state and virtually roofless. Nevertheless it does create a courtyard effect when looked at from Horseman Square, which is an address we’d never heard of before.
It comes from Horseman Works renowned for its files and agricultural implements. It’s proposed to demolish this building and replace it with a pair of semi-detached houses of upside-down design with the bedrooms downstairs; the Conservation Advisory Group considered this to be wholly unsuitable for this site. The courtyard effect would thus be ruined and the only upside of the scheme would be that access would be created to an existing riverside footpath, but surely this could be created anyway.
CAG also felt that there could be scope for re-furbishing the existing structure and this should be seriously looked at. It is situated immediately behind the Stew and Oyster which is Kelham’s latest gastropub and by all accounts a very successful one too. Perhaps with careful thought an annexe to the pub with riverside views at one end could be created? When completed the Green Lane Works site is going to be a massive development, resulting in many hungry and thirsty customers!