New carvings on the side of Beauchief Hotel pay tribute to the building’s history

Written by Louisa Hinks

Five new carvings, created by a local award-winning stonemason, were installed yesterday on the side of the Beauchief Hotel in Sheffield.

The carvings pay tribute to the hotel’s railway history, as the hotel was once Abbeydale Station Hotel.

Stonemason Steve Roche was commissioned by the hotel for this project last year and worked on the carvings at his workshop, The Stone and Letter Workshop, on John Street, Eckington.

Mr Roche was inspired by his love for art deco posters. He said: “I quite like the ones that have a really sharp vanishing point where they look like they’re coming at the viewer.

“I decided on the shape of them to make the wall look like a train at a station, but also as though they are a little window out to the past, that’s a nod to the trains that have passed through.”



Four of the carvings are dedicated to the different engines that served the Master Cutler Service, which runs from Sheffield to London. The final carving is based off of the Mallard steam train.

They are all carved in woodkirk, a local monumental quality sandstone.

The whole development process took around a year to complete and the carvings were stored up at Willow Hall Farm over the last few months before their installation yesterday.

The carvings have received already received praise from members of the local community, with Mr Roche saying that the people on the Dore and Totley community Facebook page have been very kind.

Mr Roche started his training to be a stonemason in 2009. He has always wanted to train as a stone mason or a sculpture. “It’s an interesting way of earning a living”, he said.

Mr Roche’s other work has included a carving for the new Lidl in Malin Bridge, a project based around the Sheffield flood of 1864 which won him the Keith Hayman award for public art.

Written by Louisa Hinks

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