Public Art Research Archive, Sheffield Hallam University, UK

This document is taken from Sheffield City Council's Unitary Development Plan:


The provision of works of public art in the design of major developments will be encouraged wherever possible.

Reasons for the Policy

  1. Works of art can make a positive contributor to the built envionment by giving new or refurbished buildings a unique identity. This will help to create a sense of place, add to the character of a neighbourhood and promote the image of the City.
  2. It gives an opportunity to developers to 'put something back' into the community and for local people to become involved in the design of their City. Examples in Sheffield include the sculpture in Sheffield Science Park, the steelworker mural on Castle Street, the railings in Tudor Square, the gates for the Don Valley Stadium and stained glass at the Lyceum Theatre.
  3. It is a means of providing commissions for local professional artists and craftspeople whose skills are underused.
  4. It is particularly important to give vigorous encouragement to providing works of art when considerable development is taking place.

Government national planning guidance highlights the need to give priority to good design in new development and to encouraging the arts.
How it will be put into practice

  1. Negotiating with developers for the commissioning of artwork which makes a positive contribution to development schemes and the area around them. (see also policy CFS, page 93).
  2. Liaising with developers, architects and designers to identify appropriate sites for works of art and the best type of artwork for a site.
  3. Assisting in the commissioning of local professional artists, and monitoring progress.
  4. Having regard, when deciding planning applications, to the appearance of the scheme and the surrounding area
  5. Encouraging consultation between artists and the local community.


  • 'Public art' - art or craftwork, designed and or made by professional artists and craftspeople, which enhances the public appearance of the development.
  • 'Major Developments' - for the purposes of this policy, new buildings or refurbishment or enhancement to schemes of over 1m, which have an important visual impact on the City or affect the character of a neighbourhood.
Other information:
For the Government's national planning guidance, see Planning Policy, Guidance Note PPG 12, Development Plans and Regional Planning Guidance, Department of the Environment, 1992, paragraph 6. "SHEFFIELD - A CITY FOR PEOPLE"

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Last updated 24 August, 2005