Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Hallam Tower Hotel, Sheffield

The five diamond Hallam Tower Hotel was constructed between 1963 and 1965 costing one million pound. It opened officially on 24th March 1965 and was the first luxury hotel to be built in the north of England since the Second World War. The chief architect was Nelson Foley of Trust House Architectural Department.

The exterior was designed to complement Sheffield’s post-war modernist developments; the interior by Colefax and Fowler of Mayfair offered “warm, gay colours” to contrast with “the black and grey tones of the city” and the first-class conference facilities supported the city’s bid to become a conference centre.

The following snippets of text are taken from the original Press Release (16th March 1965).

Entrance Lounge 'Sunny yellow stairwell. Bright green carpet'

Vulcan Room Restaurant 'Tones of orange, yellow, pale wrapping paper brown and sour green, the walls yellow the carpet green.'

Downstairs Bar 'A dark intimate room with a club-like atmosphere enlivened by turquoise blue upholstery. Dark lincrusta walls. 18th century Horgarth engravings. Silver Trimmings.'

Sheffield Plate Grill 'Here the open plan ends and a completely contrasting colour rendering is achieved by use of pink, red, black and white. The wall decorations consist of a series of Sheffield trade signs, none of them later than 1910 and most of them mid-19th century.'

(All paintings by John Worsley c. 1964.)


  1. I can remember my dad working at the Hallam Tower Hotel as a doorman in 1971. His job was to greet all the celebrities as they arrived. He came home with many a good story! As I don't live in Sheffield anymore I have often wondered what happened to the hotel?

  2. Unfortunately mate it's become heavily derelict and over-run with squatters and/or graffiti artists. Some of the graffiti is first class but naturally undermines the history of something so iconic to the steel city.

  3. Cool looking hotel?! Sadly it's rotting away in a hideous eyesore and needs demolishing. :(

  4. I worked as head cocktail barman there in the 60s in the bar listed above, was there during the world cup of 66. I have many great memories of all those who stayed at the hotel.