The former Anns Grove School is a complex of Victorian buildings overlooking the Heeley Millennium Park in the heart of Heeley, Sheffield. The school was constructed at the turn of the 19th Century by the Sheffield School Board as a forward looking, well designed, high quality landmark building designed by renowned School Board Architect Charles J Innocent.
The Anns Grove buildings and stone boundary walls were Grade II listed in December 1995 and, as noted in Sheffield City Council’s listing records, provide “a particularly large and complete example of Charles J Innocent’s School Board architecture”.
Outside of London, Sheffield has the greatest collection of surviving Victorian School Board architecture, and Anns Grove is a significant example, complete with all kinds of clever Victorian innovations, like the natural ventilation system, which we have reinstated.
Anns Grove was empty for seven years. Rain damage was significant after lead was stolen from the roofs, and dry rot riddled the bones of the building. But in some ways, that worked out for the best. In stripping away the damage we uncovered some beautiful period features which we might otherwise never have discovered, such as the pitch pine beams and the curved brick pillars. We’ve retained and revived everything we can, such as the York stone flagging from the original school corridor, now used in the adjacent Heeley Millennium Park. Echoes of the buildings’ past life will live on here, and that heritage and history is an essential part of the character of the place now.
The long history of the old school is very important to our local community, and to us. We intend to research and archive this rich social history in the future, when funds for the project can be raised. In the meantime, we are collecting stories, memories and images on Facebook.