Route 12. Sheffield City Centre to Hillsborough, Worrall and Oughtibridge
Until recently the North-West of Sheffield was not well served with Cycle Routes, and some would say it still isn’t. The “double whammy” of the tramlines along Langsett Rd and the dualling of Penistone Rd left us with some serious obstacles. The Council has however finally recognised this situation, and the first section of the North Don Cycle Route along Penistone Rd has emerged out of Kelham Island and made it possible to access the “Old Penistone Rd” -this will get you out to Hillsborough. At the time of writing not all the toucan crossings have been commissioned so take care on the crossings.
From the City:
Start from the Cathedral. If you’re in need of refreshment drop in at the Blue Moon veggie cafe in St Peters St. There are cycle stands in Cathedral Sq, or outside the Quaker Meeting House. At the end of St Peters St is Vicar Lane leading across Campo Lane in the heart of the Legal District (so mind who you knock over) to Silver St, where you turn left onto the northern end of Queen St. Use the cycle crossing over West Bar.
If coming into town, you need to follow a slightly different route. For the sake of simplicity we shall describe this as “follow Queen St to the last right turn before Angel St traffic lights” – this could be called Hartshead but I couldn’t swear to it. Before you turn right, however, stop a moment. This was the original planned route of the Trans-Pennine Trail through Sheffield and if you look ahead you can see a clear route through the markets and heading up the side of the Parkway. Will that route be achieved now the markets area is being developed? We’ll see…anyway, up the hill to Campo Lane, turn right and you will soon find yourself at the rear of the Cathedral.
If coming to or from the southern end of the city centre, join this route via Fitzwilliam St, taking the cycle lane across r. Devonshire Green to West St, cross with care (tramlines) then Mappin St to Upper Allen St. For the University Arts Tower/Concourse use St Philips Rd.
Back on the outward route, somehow or other you will find yourself on Scotland St. where there is a little lump in the ground to be traversed before you swoop down on Meadow St to the Netherthorpe Rd crossing, recognizable by being a big road with a tramway in between the carriageways. Follow through to Upperthorpe Rd, turning left at the junction with Netherthorpe Rd -it’s all signposted. (although some people use the supermarket car park instead) At Albert Terrace Road turn left and prepare to join the off-road cycleway that starts half-way down on the left. Follow this to the junction with Whitehouse Lane (Langsett cycles is on your right) ignoring the “All Cyclists” sign that the council has placed there to presumably ensure that you reach a sudden death when your front wheel engages with the tramline, and therefore no longer pester them to provide decent cycling facilities.
Here ends the Cyclesheffield recommended safe route to Hillsborough – we’re about a mile short of Hillsborough itself, but unless you are an experienced cyclist we cannot recommend that you proceed any further along Langsett Rd.
If you are continuing beyond Hillsborough use Albert Terrace Rd to access Penistone Rd. (Near the Sheffield Community Transport depot)
Cross at the cycle crossing near the junction with Rutland Rd and you will find an off-road cycle route of good quality that will take you as far as Livesey St, although the quality diminishes as you get further away from town. If you wish to visit Hillsborough shopping centre from this direction turn left at Bradfield Rd. There is good cycle parking in the mini-interchange at Hillsborough but take extreme care on the complex trackwork at Hillsborough Corner – walking might be a good plan.
In August 2007 passage through Hillsborough Corner became easier because the council finally started enforcing the bus & tram gates with cameras, although the tram lines are just as dangerous. However, it then became more dangerous as the idiots decided to ignore all the evidence of the benefits this has brought, particularly to public transport, and reduce the hours the tram gates operate.
An off-road cycle route now parallels Penistone Rd—part of the North Don trail options—as far as Livesey St, the Catchbar Lane junction now has cycle crossings and Claywheels Lane will lead you safely up to Beeley Woods and Oughtibridge.
So the gaps are: Whitehouse Lane to Hillsborough Corner and Hillsborough Leisure Centre to Catchbar Lane. It is possible to cycle these sections on-road with care. Match days can be tricky on Penistone Rd though!