Steel City’s magical history tour

Manor Lodge in Sheffield
Manor Lodge in Sheffield

History lovers are invited to step back in time to pre-industrial Sheffield on a special coach journey later this month.

On August 20 the “Before the Smoke – Hills and Valleys” coach tour takes place between 11am and 5pm, focusing on five of the Steel City’s most important historical sites.

The five places earmarked for the tour boast history that reaches back as far as the 800s and will demonstrate how they have contributed to Sheffield’s broad heritage.

The tour will start at Sheffield Cathedral, the city’s oldest building still in continuous use, where participants will be able to look at documents from Sheffield Archives.

After that, both Sheffield Manor Lodge (where Mary, Queen of Scots was kept for 14 years) and 16th century Bishop’s House near Meersbrook Park will give an insight into what Tudor life in Sheffield was like.

Heeley City Farm boasts a long farming history and is also the place where tour guests will have their lunch in the on-site café.

Finally, in the picturesque valley of the Porter Brook, Shepherd Wheel is a unique working example of Sheffield’s knife grinding industry dating back to when Queen Elizabeth I was on the throne.

Speaking about the tour

“We will take visitors into the heart of the places where people crafted their livelihoods before our city grew into what it is today – a globally known industrial metropolis”, promises tour guide Laura Alston: “They can explore industry and occupation in the hills and valleys surrounding old Sheffield town and experience what life was like hundreds of years ago.”

Lunch and refreshments are included in the tour. Tickets are £20 and can be booked in advance at, by email ( or by telephone (0114 2762828).