Published: 3rd Jun 2013

Portland Works, a workspace and building of industrial heritage in Sheffield, was due to be redeveloped as flats. Steve Connelly reports on how issuing community shares to buy the building is helping to forge a new kind of local economy. In February this year a community group bought a historic cutlery factory in Sheffield, after three years of campaigning and fundraising.  The group, Portland Works Little Sheffield Ltd, is a democratic, cooperative social enterprise with over five hundred members who have invested in the project.  As well as owning a magnificent Grade II* listed building, we are now also the landlord for two dozen small businesses – manufacturers, artists and bands who are based in Portland Works. Built in 1870, Portland Works has a unique place in Sheffield’s – and the world’s – industrial heritage.  In 1914 it was the first place in the world where stainless steel cutlery was … (To read the full article, subscribe below)