Print this page


Supported throughout 2015 by the Heritage Lottery Fund, RUSKIN in SHEFFIELD is an ongoing project run by the Guild of St George to reconnect Sheffield with Ruskin's legacy.

Watch a short video presentation to find out more about the project by clicking the image left.


Download the full RUSKIN in SHEFFIELD 2015 programme of events for by clicking on the image, left. Click here for a full online review of the project. And  click here to download a pdf version of the Ruskin Pop-Up Museum twitter feed.

This page is intended to summarise the latest developments in the RUSKIN in SHEFFIELD project for Companions and friends of the Guild of St George.




Sat 16 May - Sat 24 Oct (Was open 11am-4pm Weds, Thurs, Sats)
Pop-Up Ruskin Museum
381 South Road, Walkley, S6 3TD

Click on the image above to watch a short ideo: A Day at the Pop-Up Ruskin Museum
A temporary neighbourhood museum in the heart of Walkley inspired by the Ruskin Collection. A  treasure-trove of creations, collectables and curiosities made by local people, plus drop-in activities, workshops, and special events .

May - November
'The simple stories they tell us don’t make sense
any more'
Polymath artists Poly-Technic curated a series of exhibitions, interventions and social gatherings which drew on Ruskin’s social thinking, cultural ambitions and his work as a political agitator.

Sat 31 Oct - Sun 8 Nov
Ruskin Re-Viewed

An exhibition of research, displays and creative work from RUSKIN in SHEFFIELD’s community projects. A celebration of the collective heritage of Ruskin in Walkley, Totley, Rivelin Valley and Stannington. With special events on Sun 8 Nov. following the Guild's AGM.
Read an online review at The State of the Arts.

Sat 24 Oct - Sun 1 Nov 2pm daily
Wealthy City Walks

Friday, 16th Oct
Poetry Light Night
*NEW January 2016* Watch on Sheffield Poetry TV here.

Watch a light show and listen to new poems about Ruskin online.

Poetry Light Night was commissioned by Off The Shelf Festival of Words and run by Word Life in partnership with RUSKIN in SHEFFIELD. The images were projected on to the facade of Upper Chapel, opposite the former site of the Ruskin Gallery on Norfolk Street. The youtube video consists of a film by Annie Watson with a poem written and performed by Tony Walsh, and a second film by Anita Bruvere and others with a poem written and performed by Rommi Smith (with music composed by Ruskin himself).

Sunday, 27th Sep
Desperately Seeking Ruskin

Some of Sheffield’s best theatre artists celebrated the history of Ruskin in Walkley. St George’s Museums, its visitors, and maverick curators, Henry and Emily Swan, are entertainingly brought to life in this specially commissioned promenade perform ance. (Click here or the image above to go to Cabaret Boom Boom's page about the performance.)

Since Sat 1 August
Ruskin Collection

The Ruskin Collection’s latest display explores its origins at St George’s Museum in Walkley, and its influence in the succeeding years. Some of the Collection’s most popular pieces will be displayed alongside exhibits evoking the lives of its 19th-century visitors, new artworks, and items from community projects.

Since Sat 18 July
Rivelin Valley Artists’ Colony heritage trail

Look out for new signs and QR codes along the Rivelin Valley Trail which reveal the river’s industrial, natural and artistic heritage. New interpretation at Rivelin Corn Mill, Nether Cut Wheel and Mousehole Forge. A collaboration with Rivelin Valley Conservation Group. 

Sat 18 July 2pm
Ruskin Ramble

Start: Pop-Up Ruskin Museum, 381 South Road, Walkley, S6 3TD.

Freeman Bio-Dynamic Garden at High Riggs, Riggs High Road, Stannington S6 6DA
Bill Bevan led a 6-mile walk from Walkley to Stannington via Rivelin Valley.
Participants found out about the artistic, natural and industrial heritage of this beautiful route - and its connections with Ruskin. The walk ended at Freeman College Bio-Dynamic Garden during their Public Open Day.

Sat 18 July
12.30pm Ruskin, Land and Livelihoods – talks
Freeman Bio-Dynamic Garden at High Riggs, Riggs High Road, Stannington S6 6DA
This event provided an opportunity to find out about the relationships between the approaches to sustainable land use at St George’s Farm, Totley, in the late 19th-century; Freeman College, part of Ruskin Mill Trust; and Ruskin Land, the Guild of St George’s woodland in the Wyre Forest.

2-5pm Public Open Day

Mon 13 to Fri 17 July
Crafting the Land: Seed to Table – workshops
Freeman Bio-Dynamic Garden at High Riggs, Riggs High Road, Stannington S6 6DA
Free one-day workshops for individuals, families, schools, young people and community growers to work with natural materials and understand the land beneath your feet. Experts Freeman College and Growtheatre lead a broad range of creative activities, linking craft activities to food growing and healthy land management.

A fantastic opportunity to try your hand at:
Making a copper trowel using hand forging and green wood-work techniques

Environmental games
Drawing and poetry

Learning about the growing cycle
Seasonal land tasks

Prepare a light lunch from freshly picked produce
Help make your own organic bread in our outdoor bread oven

Sat 4 July 1pm - 6pm
Ruskin Park Fun Day presented by Friends of Ruskin Park

Ruskin Park, S6 3JQ

Displays about visitors to St George’s Museum who lived around Ruskin Park
Finds from an archaeological dig at Ruskin House (site of St George’s Museum)

Best Ruskin Beard competition
Craft activities run by Ignite Imaginations

Sat 27 June 2pm
St George’s Museum Plaque and Henry Swan memorial Launch

Ruskin House, Bole Hill Road (Rivelin St junction), S6 5EE

Celebration of a new plaque commissioned by the Guild of St George, to mark the site of St George’s Museum 1875-1890, led by Clive Wilmer, Master of the Guild. Please assemble on the pavement as this is a private house. Followed by ½ mile walk down to Walkley Cemetery to see the Guild’s new memorial to Henry Swan, curator of St George’s Museum, at his gravestone. Walkley Cemetery entrance is on Nichols Road, off Waller Road, S6 5DP.


Sat 27 June 12 noon and 4pm
Ruskin’s Reach - guided walk

Start: Ruskin Park opposite The Blake pub, S6 3JQ.

End: Ruskin House, Bole Hill Road, S6 5EE

Find out about the lives of some of the visitors to St George’s Museum. Who were they, what did they do and where did they live? What impact did the museum have on their lives? Led by Bill Bevan, the tour will take approximately two hours. It involves walking up and down Walkley’s pavements. The 12 noon tour will arrive at Ruskin House in time for the 2pm launch of the new plaque.
Click image left for self-guided tour.

Read more about the visitors to the Museum.

Sat 20 June 2pm
Contra Flow - poetry walk

Start: Rivelin Park Café, Rivelin Park Road, S6 5GE
End: Rails Road car park, S6 6GF

Fay Musselwhite leads Contra Flow, a unique walk through the tree-lined Rivelin Valley, taking us from Rivelin Glen to the edge of the Peak District via her own and other people’s poems. Join us as we trace the river’s industrial legacy, its unique ecology, and its relationship to Ruskin and the city. The two mile walk is moderately paced, mostly level terrain, uneven underfoot.

Sat 20 June 11am – 4pm
Rivelin Valley Artists’ Colony-for-a-Day

Come and draw, paint or write in the Rivelin Valley - no experience needed.
Bring your own drawing materials or get free paper, pencils, and charcoals from the artists’ colony tent at Rivelin Park Café or the car park off Rails Road. Look out for scenes along the valley painted by artists based at an artists’ colony at Rivelin Corn Mill between the wars. Take your creations home or hand them in at one of the tents if you’d like them to be displayed in the Pop-Up Ruskin Museum at 381 South Road in Walkley over the summer.

Sat 20 June to Sun 5 July
Ruskin’s Reach - self-guided trail

Make your own way around Walkley to discover who visited St George’s Museum and where they lived with this trail leaflet. Copies will be available from the Pop-Up Ruskin Museum, Walkley Library, Beeches and Gerry's bakery, or you can download a PDF version from from 20 June.

Saturday 20 June to Sunday 5 July
Walkley Festival Ruskin-themed community events presented by Walkley Community Forum:

  • Festival Launch Sat 20 June 10am - 12, Walkley Green, opp. Asda
  • Artworks and activities in the Pop-Up Ruskin Museum, 381 South Road
  • Walkley Festival Art Show with a Ruskin theme, St Mary’s Church, South Road
  • Walkley Treasure Hunt to spot local historical, natural and Ruskinian treasures
  • Victorian Kitchen Trail for children in shop windows in Crookes
  • Arts Trail of paintings by local amateur artists in shops in Crookes
  • Ruskin Well-Dressing at St Mary’s Church, South Road, Sat 27 June 10am - 2pm
  • Mr Turner film screening at Walkley Community Centre, Sat 4 July 7.30pm
  • Tea-Tasting at Gerties Café, South Road
  • Japanese Star Festival featuring poems and stories by Ruskin-inspired Kenji Miyazawa, exhibitions, activities and food, Sun 5 July 11.30am-3pm, Walkley Community Centre
  • Walkley Cemetery tours from 2pm, Nichols Rd, off Waller Road, Sun 5 July

20 June to 5 July WALKLEY FESTIVAL:

Sat 20 June to Sun 5 July
Ruskin’s Reach
- exhibition
Beeches of Walkley, 290 South Road, Walkley, S6 3TE
An exhibition about the lives of some of the Walkley visitors to St George’s Museum. On display in Beeches window throughout Walkley Festival.

Sat 13 June 2.30pm, Sun 14 June 10.30am and 2.30pm
BOOTS, FRESH AIR AND GINGER BEER - a walking performance

Written by Sally Goldsmith
Performed by Totley people and local actors

We meet in 1877 in Totley - a place of utopian dreams, and squabbling would-be farmers and bootmakers. Why did John Ruskin buy a farm here? How did it inspire other simple-lifers and land reformers eager to escape the smoke and dirt of the city?
This is a rural walk through time, near to St George’s Farm. On the way we encounter loud-mouthed communist Mrs Maloy, sing to the sexy sage of Holmesfield Edward Carpenter, walk with King of the Ramblers Bert Ward, meet fruit-growing farmer George Pearson - and link hands with Ethel Haythornthwaite who dreamed the Peak District National Park.

If you’ve booked
, meet 15 minutes before the start of the performance outside Cheshire Home, Mickley Hall, Mickley Lane, Totley, S17 4HE. The performance takes you on a 2.5 mile round walk up to Woodthorpe Hall (where drinks will be provided) which lasts about 2 hours. It ends at Totley Library for tea and cakes. Walking boots or shoes are essential as the path is steep and muddy in places. Some stiles. Bring waterproof clothing and a stick if you need one. No dogs please.

Fri 22 May 7pm
Curator and Curatress: The Swans and St George’s Museum - talk

Ruskin Hall, Walkley Community Centre, 7a Fir St, S6 3TG

A talk by Dr Mark Frost on the role of maverick inventor Henry Swan, and his wife Emily, curators of St George’s Museum 1875-1890.

Weds 20 May 7.30pm
Ruskin, Totley and St George’s Farm - talk

Totley Library, 205 Baslow Road, S17 4DT

A talk by Dr Mark Frost about the Guild of St George’s attempt to turn St George’s Farm into a sustainable community of growers and makers. And how they all fell out.
Talk hosted by Totley History Group.

Tues 19 May 6pm
Wealthy Cities: Re-Thinking Sheffield’s Parks and Public Spaces

Millennium Gallery, Arundel Gate, S1
"The measure of any great civilisation is its cities and a measure of a city’s greatness is to be found in the quality of its public spaces, its parks and squares.” John Ruskin

A panel of speakers, followed by audience discussion. Speakers include: Angie Hobbs, University oSheffield; Clive Wilmer, Master of the Guild of St George; Simon Ogden, Head of City Regeneration for Sheffield City Council; Victoria Bradford-Keegan, National Trust - Cities; and Kate Genever, artist, Poly-Technic.

A collaboration with the University of Sheffield Festival of Arts & Humanities

From Sat 16 May
Gerry’s Ruskin Loaf

Available at Gerry’s bakery, South Road, Walkley

Try this wholemeal honey loaf to celebrate Ruskin in Sheffield.

Sat 16 May 2pm
Launch to celebrate the opening of the Pop-Up Ruskin Museum.

Be the first to make some exhibits and taste the all-new Ruskin load.

Sun 3 May 5am
Rivelin Valley Dawn Chorus Walk
Start and End: Rivelin Park Café, Rivelin Park Road, postcode S6 5GE
Chris Baines, founder of International Dawn Chorus Day, and Roger Kite, lead this dawn chorus walk. All abilities welcome. Wear good walking shoes and waterproofs. Bring water or refreshments if needed.
The walk is moderately paced over mostly level terrain, uneven underfoot.

Ruskin in Walkley
An illustrated talk by Dr Marcus Waith
Friday, 13th February 2015
Ruskin Hall, Walkley Community Centre

Watch the video of Dr Marcus Waithe's lecture, Ruskin in Walkley, by clicking on the image (above) Video hosted by youtube.

Ruskin-in-Sheffield Launch
Sunday 1st February 2015, 4pm - 7pm
Ruskin Hall, Walkley Community Centre,

The launch provided an opportunity to find out more about the events and activities that are being created in each community and how to get involved. (See photos, left.) There was an introductions from Guild Director, Dr Janet Barnes, a chance to meet the people leading some of the projects, an opportunity to find out about taking part in, an



Ruskin-in-Sheffield is a programme of events, walks and talks in development for 2015 to reveal, reconnect and re-imagine Ruskin in Sheffield. (Click here to go to the website.)

The programme builds towards the third in a triennial series of Guild-funded exhibitions at the Millennium Gallery in Sheffield. The exhibition, themed around Craftsmanship, will be held in the first half of 2016.

Ruskin-in-Sheffield is being created to reveal the 19th

-century history of John Ruskin in Sheffield, reconnect people to arts, crafts and the land, and re-imagine Ruskin’s role in helping to shape better futures.

For the latest update on the development of the programme for 2015, please visit or contact Ruth Nutter, Project Manager at


How to Get Involved
Please click here for further information.


Funding News
We are delighted to announce that the Guild has been awarded £67,000 by the Heritage Lottery Fund to reveal, reconnect and re-imagine aspects of Ruskin’s heritage in Walkley, Totley, Rivelin Valley and Stannington in 2015.


Previous page: RUSKIN in SHEFFIELD 2016
Next page: The Ruskin Lecture