Sheffield City Council is looking to launch a new scheme to improve one of Sheffield’s District Shopping Centres.

The programme is part of the wider regeneration of the Spital Hill area and will contribute to the overall attraction and confidence in the area by improving the streetscene, helping boost the image and reputation of the centre and encouraging private investment in shops and housing.

Councillor Harry Harpham, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Homes and Neighbourhoods said:

“Spital Hill could be a thriving and successful district shopping centre. It has a strong community, a good range of shops and community facilities, and access to transport links – but it needs a helping hand to reach its full potential.

We believe that this scheme will help to create an attractive centre that people are proud of and will encourage further investment by the existing businesses. However, it will need the majority of independent owners to participate so that a sufficient impact can be made to the street scene.”

In 2011, a citywide strategy was approved by Sheffield City Council to help, support and promote local shopping centres. In July 2013, a pilot was launched in Darnall to introduce a Shop Front Improvement Scheme, and building on that success the Council are now considering a similar scheme in Spital Hill.

Support has largely been targeted at the worst performing district centres and this includes Spital Hill.

Spital Hill is the district centre for the surrounding neighbourhoods within Pitsmoor, Burngreave and Fir Vale. The retail offer within the centre is largely made up of small independent shops and restaurants, cafes and takeaways specialising in products that cater for a very diverse community.

The Spital Hill Shop Front Scheme will help to address the appearance of the area by improving the front elevations of existing businesses to create an attractive centre that people are proud of. In turn this could attract further investment by the existing businesses themselves.

Councillor Harpham added:

“We need local people to work with us to help make the scheme a success. Spital Hill has a fantastic community and together we can help turn its fortune round.”

The strategy also highlighted the need to improve appearance of the streetscene and public realm within the Spital Hill district centre as well as improving Ellesmere Green as the top two priorities for the community.

Already, a number of projects are being delivered to help achieve this:

  • Funding from the Tesco development currently being used to improve public realm from Tesco to Ellesmere Green, including public art.
  • Improvements on and around Ellesmere Green and the adjacent shopping parade to create an attractive new small park and providing a space for a community led street market. This is being funded by the Local Growth Fund. It is hoped that this will draw in footfall from the new superstore past the existing centre and create new custom and confidence in the area.
  • This Spital Hill project follows a number of other regeneration initiatives that have helped support other retail centres across the city.