June 25: Steel City of Sheffield actually began in the countryside

From: Mrs V Lloyd, Kirkhamgate, Wakefield.

THE article by Paul Jeeves (The Yorkshire Post, June 18) on the treasured landscapes of Yorkshire brought back memories of my own childhood after the First World War.

Being born and brought up in the Rivelin Valley, and walking through the fields to Stannington Church School until I was 14 years of age, gave me an understanding of what life was about. It was not always easy, but I certainly don’t envy the younger generation, having to deal with all the new inventions.

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I am glad to be out of it.

But I wonder why these highly skilled people don’t know that the steel industry of Sheffield was started in the surrounding villages?

Dams and water wheels in their coal-fired buildings, grinding many different items, but the cost was very low, coming from the river.

Most people I know worked in these industries. Then around 1950 the Corporation had all the buildings cleared away and the countryside was left to rot.

Surely these rivers could still produce power without damaging the countryside? The Derwent Valley Water Board was the main supplier for the industry at that time, but in 1951 the Peak District National Park was established when the future of the area was decided upon.