FINAL preparations are being put in place for a festive market to officially launch Sheffield’s new Antiques Quarter - with a packed day of celebrations planned in the new shopping area.
The quarter is made up of a host of antiques centres, curiosity shops and quaint cafes, lying between Heeley and Nether Edge and spanning Abbeydale Road, Broadfield Road and Queens Road.
It is hoped the venture will position Sheffield at the forefront of the trade in vintage items.
A launch event is happening next Sunday, November 25, from 11am to 5pm, attended by antiques experts, business figures and supporters from Sheffield Council. Coun Leigh Bramall and musician Dave Berry will also be delivering speeches at the festive market, taking place on Broadfield Road.
There will be more than 30 market stalls selling antiques, crafts, vintage items and art, along with classic vehicles, live music, a Santa’s grotto and children’s activities.
Funds are also being collected for Sheffield Children’s Hospital, with charity hampers on offer in a raffle.
The Antiques Quarter is the brainchild of artist Hendrika Stephens, from the Corner Gallery, who brought together a steering group.
It features six fully-stocked, double floor antiques centres and more than 20 independent shops and businesses selling retro, vintage, art, antique furniture, military and salvage wares, or providing services with a vintage twist.
Complementing the shops are six cafes selling afternoon teas, cake and a Victorian Alehouse serving hearty pies and sausages.
Supporter Ivan Macquisten, from Antiques Trade Gazette, said the quarter could encourage other cities to create similar shopping districts.
“What’s happening in Sheffield is a template for other towns and cities in the UK, not just in terms of art and antiques but in the whole approach that business, local government and people living in the area should take,” he said.
“It is a credit to the efforts and imagination of the retailers, as well as the enlightened approach of the council.”
The steering group has produced a map, flyer and loyalty card to help customers find their way around and boost trade.
An application for banners which would hang from lampposts in the quarter has also been submitted.
There will be a warm up event on Abbeydale Road and across the shops the day before, on November 24, to raise money for the children’s hospital.
Hendrika claims the shopping area is unique in the UK.
“There are some other antiques quarters but nothing running in the way we do,” she said.
The area opened for business last month, in collaboration with organisations such as Heeley Development Trust and Nether Edge Neighbourhood Group.