Now that you and the boys have made your way up to Sheffield, it’s handy to get a good grasp over what’s going on – here’s a few top tips and essential knowledge straight from us to you!
Unless you and the boys want to drive, you’re probably best off getting in to Sheffield by train. The city’s station is located to the south-east of the city centre and lies at the bottom of a relatively steep hill which leads up to the city, meaning that the main drag is not far away on foot, but will entail an uphill walk, so may not be suitable for older stag guests or those who can’t walk well. Luckily, it’s easy to hop on the free FreeBee bus and be in town in around 5 minutes – they turn up every 7 minutes too! Failing this, it’s very easy to hail a cab from the station’s rank.
If you’d like to drive in, that’s a breeze too, as Sheffield sits right next to the M1 motorway. Simply leave at junction 33 and either continue on into the city or stop at the park and ride at the city end of the Parkway in order to avoid city centre traffic.
Getting a coach with a national coach service is a great way to save on money and also to relax, take a sneaky nap or get over a hangover at the same time – it’s great value and it means that no-one’s under pressure to drive. The Sheffield Interchange is the main drop off point for buses and coaches and handily it’s only a 2 minute walk away from the rail station which makes meeting up with your mates who’ve travelled from different parts of the country simple.
The Crucible Theatre
Built relatively recently in 1971, sometimes plays and theatrical performances go on here… but quite frankly, we’re not too bothered – it’s the home of professional snooker and hosts the World Championship every year! A must for die-hard fans of the game.
O2 Academy Sheffield
A huge venue in line with the O2 Academy in London, Sheffield’s version hosts huge acts like Tom Odell, Papa Roach and Matt Cardle as well as musicals, performances and massive club nights. It’s right in the centre of town, close to the Crucible theatre and not far away from the rail station.
Sheffield is awash with theatres and the Lyceum is another great spot to try. They show various musicals, pantomimes, music and quality performances throughout the year. Once again, it’s close to other theatrical venues in Tudor square.
If you want to catch a film when you’re in Sheffield then you’re in the right place as there are 4 within the city! Look up the Valley Centertainment Complex where there are a massive 20 screens under one roof, Odeon Sheffield on Arundel Gate, The Showroom on Sheaf Gate and Vue in Meadowhall shopping centre.
Did you know that Sheffield was the UK’s first city of sport? Athletes trained here in preparation for the 2012 Olympics.
Sheffield has two major teams who play professionally for the city - Sheffield United and Sheffield Wednesday. United wear green and yellow when playing away and sadly were relegated in 2011 to League One. They play at Bramall and are nicknamed ‘the blades’. Sheffield Wednesday are one of the oldest teams in the UK and they adopted their unusual name as a nod to the Wednesday night football club from which they began and they’re often called ‘The Owls’ because the team play at the ground at Owlerton.
The Sheffield Eagles are the city’s only rugby league team. They’ve only been around for 29 years and they’re currently 2nd in the league. They play at the Don Valley Stadium.
The clever chaps at the 8,500 seater Sheffield Arena are able to flood this venue out with ice once in a while and the city’s fantastic Sheffield Steelers play there as a part of the 10 team Elite Ice Hockey League.
The Crucible is the venue for the World Championships for snooker – the reigning champion is Ronnie O’Sullivan, king of the snooker table. Will he be knocked off the top spot in 2014, or will he take the title for an incredible 6th time?
The museums of Sheffield are most certainly not in short supply and plenty are completely free! So, if you fancy a bit of culture on your stag, see the City Museum for a comprehensive guide to Sheffield’s industrial past, involving all you need to know about Sheffield steel and cutlery. Forking impressive! The Graves Art Gallery which sits at the top of the City Library has an amazing range of pieces from Turner, Nash, Gwen John and various Pre-Raphelites. Perfect if you’re a lover of social art, the Ruskin Gallery is home to the varied collection of St. George which was set up to better the minds of the industrial working population – it might just better your minds too! Lastly, the Mappin Art Gallery in Weston Park displays the vast majority of Sheffield’s collection of important 19th century paintings.
Whether you’re a sucker for shrubbery or not, Sheffield Winter Gardens are well worth a look. It’s the largest urban glass hothouse in the whole of Europe and because of the warm temperatures created inside artificially, it’s able to breed and maintain exotic and crazy plants from all over the world – there’s over 2,000 in total! The building in itself is a real feat of engineering and even though it was created entirely from sustainable materials, it can never drop below 4 degrees Celsius… so, let’s be honest, even if staring at orchids bores you stiff, it’s probably the warmest place in town come chilly February shopping trips…
Okay, so this isn’t a city centre activity at all, but if you’ve got a car and a couple of hours to kill, you’d be mad not to take a trip up the peaks. They’re winding, majestic, stunning and absolutely cracking for a brisk walk, trek or expedition depending on your group’s levels of stamina and dedication!