Monday, 8 December 2014

A morning out with the Sheffield Hardware Hackers at The Portland Works

I'm involved with a group in Sheffield called the Sheffield Hardware Hackers and Makers. As a group we have been using various maker spaces around Sheffield, but now an opportunity has risen for us to investigate the possibility of having a space of our own. So at 10.30am on a chilly Sunday morning we had a look at The Portland Works

 The Portland works was built in 1877 and is an old Sheffield institution and arguably the birth of stainless steel. It was build as a hive of workshops and factories based around a single engine house powering the various businesses through belt drives and traditional overhead pulleys.


In 2009 while still housing several small business it was being threaten by being converted into flats. At his point a social enterprise was formed from 500 members of the community that pool funds buy the site.

The Businesses that operate on the site work together for the benefit of the site and all help in the active restoration of The Portland Works.


The Motley crew being given a quick insiders tour by James Wallbank of Infinite Crypt makers of high quality affordable model scenery.     


Makers on a Roof getting the overview of the whole site


Some lovely old kit knocking around the yard waiting for restoration by members of the site love the look of this lathes peg-board programming panel 


Entering to have a look at the available space.


Sorry about the picture quality down to my shaky hands. This is the main room of the space it was used by a band as a practice room previously with some discarded kit but a nice flight case in the corner. Having a long talk with Colin the landlord who was very receptive to what we need as a group.


The space had a smaller room next to the main area and up in the roof an original pulley from the Victorian drive system.   


Then it was off to The Harland Cafe for a long chat about our thoughts and options






 

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