Hillsborough Park is set for a new community café and activity centre after The National Lottery Heritage Fund announced their support for the project.

The National Lottery Heritage Fund have awarded local charity Age UK Sheffield £581,500* to restore the derelict Grade II Listed Old Coach House building, next to Hillsborough Library. The nearby Potting Shed will be renovated as a creative Makers’ Shed, whilst Age UK Sheffield will also manage community facilities at the park’s Bowling Pavilion.

Age UK Sheffield Chief Executive, Steve Chu, said: “This is absolutely amazing news. I am so grateful to The National Lottery Heritage Fund and everyone who buys Lottery tickets. This project could not have developed without National Lottery funding.”

He added: “We are going to create a beautiful new café for Hillsborough Park and develop an exciting range of activities which will be targeted at older people, accessible to people with long-term health conditions such as dementia, and available to the entire community.”

David Renwick, Director, England, North at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: “We are really pleased to be able to support Age UK Sheffield’s vision for the Old Coach House and the Potting Shed become reality. Our funding will not only go towards saving these historic buildings from dilapidation, but will ensure that they will become valuable community assets providing a space for services for older people and dementia-friendly activities.

“Here at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, we are committed to making investments that will ensure the UK’s heritage sector is strong and resilient, and we commend the steps that Age UK Sheffield have taken so that their community café and activity centre in Hillsborough Park will be a sustainable business for many years to come.”

Councillor Mary Lea, Cabinet Member for Culture, Parks and Leisure at Sheffield City Council, said: “I am absolutely thrilled that The National Lottery Heritage Fund is supporting this fantastic development. These plans will bring new life and modern facilities in to what is already one of our most popular parks, serving many local communities. Sheffield City Council is proud to be working with Age UK Sheffield to regenerate this historic building as a unique cafe venue for Sheffield.

“From the beginning, the vision was to transform the historic disused Coach House into a vital community hub, where local people and visitors can meet for drinks and refreshments while enjoying the park’s great recreational and heritage facilities. This will also enable people with dementia, their families, friends and carers, to be more active, more creative and more integrated. This funding means that vision is now becoming a reality.”

The project will revitalise Hillsborough Park, and enhance other improvements planned by the Council, which include a new wheels park and exciting developments for the playground. The aim is for Hillsborough Park to be a site that helps and encourages people of all ages and abilities to have fun and get active together.

Age UK Sheffield are hoping to begin construction work in the autumn, with the aim of opening the café during summer 2021.

In total, the project will cost around £1 million, with Age UK Sheffield contributing £100,000 and over £200,000 in partner funding already secured. Additional local fundraising will also be needed. Anyone who is interested in supporting the project, through volunteering or fundraising, should e-mail: enquiries@ageuksheffield.org.uk or phoning (0114) 250 2850.