I’m working on an MA Creative Writing project based on the flats I used to live in for most of the 1980s. The notorious Kelvin Flats of Sheffield. Kelvin was the last built and most reviled of the Brutalist housing developments in my fair city after Park Hill, Hyde Park and Broomhall. I’ve long held that the only people who loved them were the people who lived in them. The negativity and outright hatred heaped on the estate is largely from people who never experienced them as a tenant.
I loved my time at 20 Woollen Walk. Absolutely adored it. For all it’s quirks and characters, all the negative press it got, it’s the place that had the strongest community spirit I’ve ever been privileged to be part of.
This site is made up of stories that are either my direct recollections, or stories told to me by people who lived on the flats. There are also stories from history about the area on which the flats were built, the slum clearances, the tannery, the infirmary and some stories from video and oral archives. Some have been rewritten as poetry.
If you lived on the flats and have tales or pictures share, please get in touch! They don’t have to be earth shattering events. They don’t have to be about the building. Just about your time there; small, human tales. Look for upcoming posts like ‘Milk’, ‘House Proud’ and ‘Dead Letter Office 1’. You’ll get the idea.