Whether you have young children eager to scramble up boulders or you're new to climbing yourself, there are plenty of options in and around Sheffield that are accessible and offer facilities fit for beginners. We recommend starting with the following three.
The Heeley Boulders are part of a number of artificial boulders made for climbing that are scattered throughout the city. Located in family-friendly Heeley Park, the boulders are free and accessible to the public, and offer a perfect way to get a feel for whether bouldering is for you. They're also next to a well-equipped children’s playground, so you can nip up there for an outdoor adventure within the city. If all that climbing makes you thirsty, The Brothers' Arms pub is over the road, and has a covered outdoor terrace with a heater.
Heeley Park, off Prospect Road, S8 9TF. Park on the streets nearby, or access on foot – it's about a five minutes' walk uphill from Ponsfords on Chesterfield Road (follow the signs for Heeley City Farm).
The Mini Works
If the weather isn’t good enough for a trip out to the Peak District, or you don’t feel confident to climb outdoors yet, you can always head indoors to burn off some climbing energy. The Mini Works is an extension to the Climbing Works bouldering centre, and is specifically designed for younger climbers and those who are new to the sport. Non-climbing adults can supervise younger climbers, or you can climb together if you prefer. The Works has a cafe and offers shoe hire if you aren’t ready to invest in your own climbing gear.
The Mini Works, Centenary Business Park, Little London Road, S8 0UJ. Parking available, or take the bus to nearby Abbeydale Road/Woodseats Road.
When the weather is good and the days are long, Birchen Edge near Baslow is the perfect place to spend a day out in the Peak District. On the Edge itself are rock climbing routes for all abilities, including plenty of easy routes for beginners. The flat grassy area above the crag is scattered with gritstone boulders that are fun for smaller children to scramble around on. This area has fantastic views across the Peak District, and makes a great location for a picnic. The Edge is also home to landmark Nelson’s Monument, which is a gritstone obelisk, originally erected in 1810. Refreshments are available at the Robin Hood Inn, which is a few minutes walk away, has areas to sit outside and inside, and sells home made food and local ales.
Birchen Edge is ten minutes walk from National Trust parking next to The Robin Hood Inn, Chesterfield Road, Baslow, DE45 1PQ.