in 2018 Wessex Archaeology undertook archaeological works at Sheffield Castle. The work was commissioned by Sheffield City Council in order to determine the level of preservation of the remains of Sheffield’s 13th-century castle and later industrial development. The castle was demolished in the 17th and 18th centuries, and a 19th-century steelworks and the 20th-century Castle Market were constructed in its place.

This work provided the first opportunity to understand the archaeology of the whole site. The eleven trenches revealed more of Sheffield’s rich steel-making past along with a section across the full width of the medieval castle's moat. The project created a fantastic opportunity to understand more about Sheffield’s medieval past, much of which was lost during the 19th-century development of the city.

© University of Sheffield


A team from Wessex Archaeology’s Sheffield office excavated 11 evaluation trenches on the site over nine weeks, working in tandem with the Friends of Sheffield Castle and the University of Sheffield we provided opportunities for students and volunteers to assist in the work.

Throughout the excavation work we provide regular updates of the works in progress, held open days and site tours for members of the public, local groups and schools, and gave a series of talks on the results of the work.


Sheffield Castle Story

Three images (below) kindly provided by Paul Rowland

Sheffield Castle volunteers excavating onsite Sheffield Castle volunteers excavating onsite Sheffield Castle excavations

To watch the series of videos created during this excavation visit our YouTube collection here.

Work now underway digging Sheffield Castle Work underway digging Sheffield Castle

© BBC copyright courtesy of BBC Look North


In August 2018 we began archaeological fieldwork on the site of Sheffield Castle and now, two years later in August 2020, we have finished reporting on the eleven trenches of the archaeological evaluation and borehole survey. Read online or download the final archive report detailing the full results and analysis of the evaluation.