church house

Church House, City Centre

Tucked away behind the main road near Sheffield Cathedral you will find the Church House, a lively pub in a Grade II listed building.

The building was originally constructed in 1860 by the Church of England Educational Institute, an organisation formed in 1839 to promote the education of young adults. Over the next hundred years or so, the site was used for various purposes before being converted into a pub around thirty years ago. At that time, the bar was known as the Ferret and Trouser Leg, a name that can still be seen today in the glass panel above the doorway. The following decades saw a couple of new names, including the Priory and the Sanctuary, before the pub was bought by Star Pubs in 2012. A change to the current name and a comprehensive £220,000 refurbishment followed, including restoration of original features, exposing the brickwork and the installation of history boards and beer-bottle chandeliers. The erstwhile Mayor of Sheffield, John Campbell, was invited to conduct the reopening ceremony in November that year.

The Church House today attracts a variety of customers. Four real ales are on offer: Theakstons Lightfoot and Robinsons Trooper are always available, while beers from local breweries such as Bradfield and Kelham Island come on the pumps at weekends and during busier periods. There is also a wide range of lagers, ciders and bottled drinks, along with coffees and teas and an interesting food menu. There are plenty of events going on: on Tuesday nights there is a weekly board games club, Wednesday night is open mic, and there is live music (mostly alternative and rock) every Friday and Saturday.

You can find the Church House at 4 St. James Street, Sheffield, S1 2EW. It is a 30-second walk from the Cathedral tram stop, or there are numerous buses that also stop nearby.

Inn Brief

The Cherry Tree on Carter Knowle Road has retained its Asset of Community Value status after surviving the review requested by Enterprise Inns. The planning appeal has also been won.

The Frog & Parrot has reopened following refurbishment to freshen up the interior.

The Old House on Devonshire Street has reopened as the Devonshire following a makeover.

Edward’s bar is set to open at the end of September on Glossop Road in the premises previously known as the Stone & Taps and the Swim Inn.

The closed down West Street Ale House, along with the neighbouring building, is being demolished to be replaced with an 11-storey block of flats.

The Old Mother Redcap at Bradway (a Samuel Smith’s pub) is currently closed and looking for a new live in management couple.

The Old Hall Hotel at Hope was recently noted as having guest ales on the bar from JW Lees and Robinsons rather than an all-Theakston range on your correspondent’s last visit, with the Lees Epic (3.9%) being a very pleasant golden ale.

Work has started on the Guzzle micropub at Woodseats in a former shop unit across the road from the library and KFC. It will offer draught cask and keg beers and is hoping to be open by October. You can follow the progress on their Facebook and Twitter accounts.

A micropub and bottle shop is still being planned for the unit on Ecclesall Road previously occupied by Eccy Booze, by the people behind the Brew Foundation. Things have been moving slowly but we are told it is still happening.

Exit 33 Mosaic is now a regular beer on the bar at the Washington.

With the end of summer, Sunday roasts are now back on the menu at the Beer Engine.

The Ale House on Fraser Road is holding a ‘Not the Whitby Folk Week’ from 29 September to 1 October with a range of beers from Whitby Brewery – including a meet the brewer event on the Friday, a music programme and a food matching event. Details on their Facebook page –

The Rutland Arms on Brown Street is holding a vegan tasting menu event on 1 November, advance booking is necessary.

The Off the Shelf Festival of Words will see beer writer Pete Brown come to Sheffield on 27 October for an event at Hop Hideout to talk about his new book Miracle Brew, where there will also be a beer tasting. Tickets are available from the festival website.

The Butcher’s Arms at Marsh Lane is now run by the Hop & Hook Pub Company, a joint venture involving RAW Brewery and Pigeon Fishers with their beers on the bar plus guests.

The Grindstone in Crookes has reopened under new management; it is still a Greene King pub but they are now featuring guest ales from local brewers, such as Chesterfield’s Ashover Brewery.

The name of the new bar being built in the old Town Hall toilets has been revealed as the Public. The bar will be run by the team behind the Great Gatsby on Division Street and Picture House Social on Abbeydale Road.

The Old Crown Inn on London Road has reopened under new management, and will continue to serve real ale.

The second of the Steel City Beer Festival beer mat auctions raised £10.45 for Weston Park Cancer Charity. Hopefully next time there will be a few more bidders and we can raise even more money for the charity!

The results of a recent national survey have found that Yorkshire is the joint-cheapest county in the country for a pint of beer, at an average price of £3.30 a pint, a price matched only by pubs in Hertfordshire.

Plans have been submitted for the demolition of the former Acorn Inn, Shalesmoor (most recently a printing shop), to make way for a block of 21 apartments.

The Punchbowl in Crookes is advertising for a new licensee after the former landlord moved to the Three Tuns on a tenancy-at-will. The Tuns will continue to serve real ales from the Punch Taverns list, and has a small selection of hot and cold sandwiches and chips available at lunchtime.


Closed Shop, Commonside

Following months of uncertainty surrounding the future of a popular Sheffield pub, The Closed Shop is set to re-open its doors this weekend after two beer-loving entrepreneurs stepped in to secure the future of their much loved local.

Thomas Gill and Adam Hague, perhaps best known as being the co-owners of Neepsend-based Stancill Brewery, first began drinking in The Closed Shop as students, using it as a way of escaping from the daily grind of their studies. Like many people, they fell in love with the unique atmosphere and when the intrepid duo learned of the uncertain future the pub faced, they decided to mount a rescue bid to keep the pub open.

TG Outside

Following a lengthy negotiation with owners Punch Taverns and meeting with the local community group, Tom and Adam received the keys to The Closed Shop at the end of August. Behind the bar, additional hand pumps have been added, increasing the range of hand pulled beers to ten, which will include a selection of changing guest beers as well as a selection of Stancill beers. Additional craft beer lines have also been installed and a selection of more than 30 gins and whiskies will also be available. The pub’s kitchen is currently being refurbished and is due to re-open in the next few weeks.

A number of regular events are planned to take place, including the return of the fiercely competitive Closed Shop quiz, which will take place every Wednesday with Jam Nights, food and drink evenings and after work drinks specials planned to be added in the future. The pub will be managed by experienced manager Hayley McPhie, who was responsible for overseeing the re-opening of the Norfolk Arms, Grenoside, which has been run by Stancill since November 2016 and the brewery is calling on former staff who worked at The Closed Shop to get in touch.

Thomas Gill, Managing Director, Stancill Brewery said: “The Closed Shop is a special pub for both Adam and I. When we heard that the pub had been forced to close unexpectedly we decided to contact Punch Taverns and see whether we could secure the future of a pub which we’d both spent many happy hours in during our student years.TG inside closed shop

“We’re hoping to replicate the winning formula which we’ve achieved in our other pubs in Sheffield, combining a changing selection of drinks, building a friendly and relaxing atmosphere where friends can meet and socialise and perhaps most importantly of all, placing the pub at the very heart of the local community.”

The Closed Shop will open from 2pm-12am Monday – Saturday and 2pm-11pm on Sundays.

harlequin side

The Harlequin, Kelham Island

For the second consecutive year The Harlequin was a finalist at The Great British pub awards, having been nominated for National Cider Pub of the Year by industry newspaper The Morning Advertiser.
Unfortunately it was close but no cigar again, but to be nominated is testament to how the pub champions cider.

Live music for October is as follows:

Saturday 7 October – Blues Train
Friday 13 October – Ace in the Hand
Saturday 14 October – AK47
Friday 20 October – Earth Tales
Saturday 21 October – Slingshots
Friday 27 October – Blues Review
Saturday 28 October – Jack Harper

Pete Roberts

Carbrook Hall panelled room 2 by Michael Slaughter LRPS

Carbrook Hall

Sheffield CAMRA believe that the current owner of Carbrook Hall is in talks with a ‘multinational coffee chain’ about turning the building into a drive-through café.

Carbrook Hall is one of only two pubs in Sheffield which have Grade II* listing. These are particularly important buildings of more than special interest.  Listed building consent must be applied for in order to make any changes to that building which might affect its special interest. In addition, planning permission is required for a changing the use of a public house into, for example, a supermarket or café.


The ‘old oak room’ is a fine example of a 17th century panelled room with vine trail plaster frieze and enriched cross beam ceiling; if it was situated in a tourist hotspot, paying customers would visit on a daily basis. We find it difficult to see how the suggested conversion of the building could do anything but harm this historic part of our culture.

Carbrook Hall is also one of only eleven Sheffield pubs which have ACV (Asset of Community Value) status. Hence, we continue to look forward to the owner putting forward a comprehensive repair and restoration plan that meets the approval of Historic England, Sheffield planners and crucially, the communities that use it.

Dave Pickersgill


Heritage Pubs – Shakespeare’s

Built in 1821 as a multi-roomed coaching inn, Shakespeare’s has undergone various changes. For many years an S.H. Ward’s pub, the well-known live music venue was closed by Punch Taverns in early 2010. It re-opened 18 months later, with the original passageway to the yard creatively turned into another room. At the same time, the above-bar panelling was added and the long-established bar moved slightly forward.

Wards window at Shakespeares, Sheffield reversed

The terrazzo flooring which flows from the entrance lobby indicates the original floor plan. There is a leaded ‘Ward’s Fine Malt Ales’ window and a distinctive exterior sign with the same wording. In earlier days, the pub name was over the door, in a similar style (see 1982 photo).

shakespeares 1982

A 1946 plan (Hadfield Cawkwell, Sheffield) indicates that the rear room was split into two, the right-hand ‘Parlour’ having a separate door (opposite the bar). ‘Service’ and ‘Tap Room’ (front left) are both in their current positions. This plan has 1980 amendments which indicate the position of gaming machines. A 1962 plan (Hadfield, Cawkwell & Davidson, Rotherham for Messrs. S.H. Ward & Co.Ltd.) shows a new counter for the bar and the removal of a screen into the rear left Public Bar.


A December 1981 plan (Sackville Design Co.) shows the rear rooms changing into a single ‘Lounge’ and the conversion of a kitchen and wash room into a smaller ‘catering kitchen’ and internal toilets. This is repeated on a 1984 plan (Jenkinson Palmer & Associated, Rotherham).


Dave Pickersgill and Mick Slaughter

The Plough Sandygate 23 01 2017

Plough, Sandygate

The Plough Community Campaign submitted a bid to purchase the Plough in mid-August. This was based on a professional valuation of £435,000, which also included the third car park adjacent to the sports ground. They were informed by the agents that the third car park had been taken out of the sale but we stood by our bid. In discussions with both the agents and Enterprise Inns, they were asked whether the bid could be increased to match one which was ‘significantly’ higher.

It seems that Enterprise Inns will go with the higher offer. We do not know the identity of the other bidder but Enterprise have said it is someone who wants to reopen the pub and someone with a track record in the industry.

Despite the fact that The Plough Community Campaign seems to have reached the end of the road, the campaigners would like to thank everyone who has supported them and those who pledged to invest in a community pub. Local people have shown great support for the Plough. This possibly persuaded other investors that it can be a viable pub and a great local. When the campaign began in June 2016, the original slogan was ‘Save the Plough’ and it looks like this has been achieved. If we had not successfully campaigned against Sainsbury’s application for the change of use, the pub would have been lost forever.

The Plough Community Campaign would like to thank everyone for their support throughout a long and challenging campaign.

Bath Hotel external

Bath Hotel, City Centre

The Bath Hotel’s building has reached the grand old age of 150! So over this summer we have given it a bit of a spruce up with a new lick of paint while keeping all its heritage charm. This is all just in time for the national Cask Ale Week, happening from 21 September – 1 October. For this we have Moor Beer coming up from Bristol for a tap takeover to show off their range of tasty, unfined cask beer. We will be racking up 6 extra casks in the pub, meaning a total of 12 cask beers will be available in the Bath during the week!

The Bath team are also heading up to Beer Ink Brewery in Huddersfield in a couple of weeks’ time especially to brew something new for Cask Ale Week, although discussions are still ongoing as to what this beer may be.

To finish off the week, on Saturday 30 September we will also be hosting a Record Fair in conjunction with Broomhill’s Record Collector. This promises DJs, bands and the chance to buy vinyl from the largest independent record store in Sheffield!

Chris Tremblett


The Albion, London Road

The newly refurbished Albion finally opened its doors to the public on Friday 28 July. The pub is the brainchild of Stancill Breweries Owners Adam Haigh and Thomas Gill, alongside their business development manager and area manager Katy Streets.

They wanted to create a bar that was all about the beer. Katy said: “Stancill Brewery has a great following in Sheffield and our two brewery taps, The Horse and Jockey on Wadsley Lane and The Norfolk Arms in Grenoside have been steadily growing in popularity over the last year. With our new venture we wanted to showcase our passion for amazing quality beer and offer a wide range of both guest cask and craft keg products alongside our most popular Stancill Brewery products.”

With 14 rotating craft lines and 10 real ale taps, The Albion will offer an excellent selection of local, British and international brews.


Katy added: “We are all incredibly passionate about beer and wanted to make this passion our main focus for this new venue. This is a dream project for me, as a longtime CAMRA supporter and a craft beer lover, I was thrilled to be offered the challenge of planning, designing and running The Albion.”

The team already have plans for the future to extend their large beer garden and install a kitchen. Katy said: “We are so lucky to have a very enthusiastic team who all want to work towards a successful bar and we are all excited to keep moving the venue forward and ensure that our patrons have the best possible experience!”

The Albion is open from 2pm til 12am every day (with longer opening hours at weekend) and will offer 50p off all casks for CAMRA members.

Katy Streets

football pub montage

Real Ale and the Beautiful Game

With the football season getting back into full swing, we take a trip around Sheffield to look at some of the real ale available around the grounds of each of the city’s clubs. Obviously there are too many pubs to list them all, so to avoid any possible accusations of favouritism we will be visiting the three closest hostelries to each ground that serve real ale according to our records (if you know differently, please let us know!). These places are not all necessarily frequented by football fans but can get very busy on matchdays, so if you want a quieter pint you may be better off visiting during the week.

Sheffield United – Bramall Lane

sheaf houserailway hotelcricketers arms

The closest of Sheffield’s clubs to the city centre, Bramall Lane has been in use as a sporting venue for more than 150 years. Its central location means there is a plethora of choices for discerning drinkers in the local area.

Cricketers Arms: Situated directly opposite the the away fans’ turnstiles, the pub’s name references Bramall Lane’s history as a cricket ground, with cricket matches first being hosted there in 1855. The pub usually offers two real ales from local brewers such as Bradfield, Abbeydale and Stancill. Buses 18 and 252.

Railway Hotel: Just 200 metres further down the road is the Railway Hotel, which has been run by Jack Cater since late 2015. Previously a “football pub” focused on lager, the change of ownership saw the introduction of real ale and cider, along with craft keg lines and a large bottle range. The Railway offers five real ales, many from local breweries, plus a real cider, and there is a very generous discount of 30p per pint available to CAMRA members. Buses 18 and 252.

Sheaf House: Named after the football ground, Sheffield Wednesday’s home between 1877 and 1880, that was located on the site where the pub stands today, the Sheaf House of 2017 is a pub focused on games, with darts, pool and snooker all available. One real ale is on offer in the shape of Bradfield Farmer’s Blonde. Buses 18 and 252.

Also within half a mile: Cremorne, Albion, Old Crown Inn, Clubhouse, Beer Engine, Sentinel Brewery, Royal Standard, Lord Nelson

Sheffield Wednesday – Hillsborough Stadium

old crownpark hillsboroughriverside cafe

Wednesday moved to their current location in 1899 having previously played in the Lowfield area of the city but being forced to find a new ground following the extension of the railways. Being a little further out, there aren’t quite as many pubs, but still plenty of choice for fans of real ale.

Riverside Cafe: Just around the corner from Hillsborough Stadium, this is a modern, community-run cafe and pub offering four real ales from breweries such as Acorn, Bradfield and Great Heck alongside excellent food and an outdoor seating area overlooking, as its name suggests, the River Don. Buses 35, 38, 85, 97 and 98 or tram to Leppings Lane.

Park: Another pub focused on food following its takeover by Sizzling Pubs in 2008, the Park is located about 250 metres from the football stadium, overlooking Hillsborough Park. One real ale is available, which at the time of CAMRA’s last visit was Wells’ Bombardier. Buses 35, 38, 85, 97 and 98 or tram to Leppings Lane.

Old Crown: Very popular with Wednesday supporters on matchdays, the Old Crown can be found about 500m down Penistone Road from the stadium, near Owlerton greyhound track. The pub offers two changing real ales from guest breweries. Buses 7, 8 and 86.

Also within half a mile: Railway, Castle Inn, Horse & Jockey

Hallam FC – Sandygate

bull's headcrosspool tavernsportsman

Almost 250 metres above sea level on the western edge of Sheffield lies Sandygate, the home of Hallam FC since 1860, making it the oldest football ground in continuous use in the world. The plight of the Plough across the road from the stadium has been well documented, but real ale connoisseurs still have a number of options in the local area.

Sportsman: A gastropub with a dedicated bar area, the Sportsman offers at least five real ales including Ember Inns’ own Pale Ale brewed by Black Sheep, plus rotating guests. Pub quizzes are hosted on Wednesdays and Sundays, while CAMRA members can also enjoy a discount of 20p per pint. Bus 51.

Crosspool Tavern: Probably better known for its carvery than its real ale selection, the Crosspool Tavern nevertheless does offer cask beers, most recently Sharp’s Doom Bar and Black Sheep Best Bitter. A range of bottled beer is also available. Bus 51.

Bull’s Head: A 10-minute walk down the hill in Ranmoor, the Bull’s Head is popular with real ale drinkers, offering regular beers from Abbeydale, Bradfield and Kelham Island breweries plus two changing guest beers. Entertainment includes live music on Saturday nights and a general knowledge quiz on Sundays. Bus 120.

Also within half a mile: Ranmoor Inn, Florentine

Sheffield FC – Coach and Horses Ground

OK, so they might not play in Sheffield these days, but no article about the city’s football clubs would be complete without mentioning the oldest football club in the world still in existence. The club played at several grounds around Sheffield for almost 150 years before moving down the road to Dronfield in 2001. There are two pubs serving real ale within half a mile of the ground.

Coach & Horses: This Thornbridge pub is located at the ground, so you can enjoy your pint while watching the football. One of the venues of the annual 3 Valleys Beer Festival, the pub offers five Thornbridge cask ales plus one guest cask, along with a range of keg and bottled beers. There is also a 20p per pint discount for CAMRA members.

Victoria: This pub in Dronfield town centre was awarded Dronfield & District CAMRA’s “Most Improved Pub” award in 2013. There are up to six cask ales available, with all pints offered at a very reasonable £2.50 per pint on Mondays.

Dominic Nelson