Six years on, what’s to replace M1 landmark?

Tinsley Towers being demolished in 2008
Tinsley Towers being demolished in 2008

First steps are being taken towards creating an artwork - or artworks - to replace the Tinsley cooling towers, six years after the landmark was demolished.

An artist will be selected to oversee the £500,000 community project, financed by energy company E.ON.

It could be one piece of work or more than one, located in the east end of Sheffield and likely to link with features such as the Five Weirs Walk and Trans-Pennine Trail.

The site of the cooling towers - demolished despite some local opposition - is now part of E.ON’s Blackburn Meadows biomass plant, which is nearing completion next to the M1.

The art project aims to reflect Sheffield’s industrial past and innovative future, building on themes such as sustainable energy, advanced manufacturing and the outdoors. Artist David Cotterrell has been given an initial commission to explore the potential for the piece of public art, which will help to form the basis of the final brief.

Council cabinet member Isobel Bowler said: “I am thrilled to see that this work is now coming to fruition and love to think that, in the future, families and art lovers will come to the area to see something just as iconic in the place of the famous towers.”

She said the project will be “significant for Tinsley and Sheffield and an integral part of the wider physical and economic regeneration of the Lower Don Valley”.

Expressions of interest will be invited from artists, and three will get the chance to develop their ideas into workable and costed proposals. The final artist will then be selected.