The Walkley Historians investigate and share the history of Walkley, a suburb in the west of Sheffield.
The group came together in November 2012 to work on Walkley Ways, Walkley Wars, a three-year family, local and oral history research project, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. Many members of the group had not been involved in any sort of historical research before, though some were experienced genealogists or historians. The outcomes of Walkley Ways, Walkley Wars included a book, guided walks, evening History is Here talks, a new website and the organisation of, or participation in, other local events. As well as the Community Centre, the project involved many local organisations including local Churches, the Walkley Carnegie Library, schools, shops and businesses. One theme of the project: the research and interpretation of the First World War, under the title Nine Men, Nine LIves, One Great War, won the Association for Heritage Interpretation 2015 Discover Heritage Award for best Community Project in the UK and Ireland.
After the successful conclusion of Walkley Ways, Walkley Wars, the Walkley Historians established its own structure and secured a new Heritage Lottery Fund grant to research Walkley’s Victorian history over a further three year period. Another well received book resulted, published just before the pandemic caused a pause in social activities. This did not stop the Walkley Historians continuing their ‘desk research’ into aspects of local history that appealed to them. The History is Here talks and other activities resumed as soon as allowed, and plans are now in progress for a new project, focussing on another period of Walkley’s history.
The Walkley Historians continue to operate as an independent, informal, volunteer group and anyone with an interest in Walkley’s history is invited to get involved. Bringing together people with a common interest in Walkley history is a valuable aspect of the group’s activities.