The Leadmill opens exhibition celebrating the history of Sheffield’s ‘best music venue’

Sheffield’s Leadmill has opened a unique exhibition of memorabilia from the venue’s 43-year history – in which it has seen the likes of Pulp, Oasis and Coldplay grace the stage. 

The Leadmill Archives includes setlists from various shows, rare and unseen photographs, press cuttings, stacks of classic show listings and more items that have been collected since the opening of the venue in 1980. 

Emma and Chaz Barnett from Chesterfield, who visited the exhibition today told how they remembered seeing various bands and artists perform in the venue since the 1990s. 

Mr Barnett, 52, when asked what Leadmill meant to him, said: “This is Sheffield. I can’t imagine it not being here.”

Mrs Barnett, 53, added: “It’s the best music venue in Sheffield, it always has been.”

The iconic venue was originally converted from a derelict flour mill and opened its doors in 1980. Since then, its stage has seen the likes of Coldplay, The Killers and numerous comedy acts and drama performances. 

Jon Downing at the exhibition.

Jon Downing, 67, from Sheffield, said he was at the official opening of Leadmill 43 years ago and wanted to visit the exhibition today as the venue has changed a lot in the last four decades.

He spoke about how different the venue is now since it first opened.

“They didn’t used to have advanced tickets so we would wait for hours. It was a case of getting down at six or seven o’clock and hoping for the best.”

Mr Downing added: “I’ve always come to gigs at the Leadmill. I keep coming back. There’s no reason not to.”

The launch of the exhibition has had a strong response from followers of the venue on social media.

One of these, Marguerite Bradshaw, said: “What a great place… and great memories.”

Another, Debra Clarke, said: “This looks fantastic.”

Peter Parker added: “I’ll be popping over first chance I get.”

The exhibition is free to visit and no tickets are needed to enter the venue. Opening times will be released by Leadmill on a week-by-week basis on their website which can be found here

This week’s opening times are: Wednesday 8 March, 11am – 6pm; Thursday 9 March, 9am – 4pm; and Friday 10 March, 11am – 7pm.

Written by Robin Hibbs

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