Story by Carrie Hedderwick Photos by Jan Zambra
Ivor Wallace has lived in Page Hall since 1983. Ivor was a key figure in the Page Hall Community
Association, formed in 2005 to prevent the demolition of local homes. They ran a successful
campaign – the houses were saved and the council made show homes to demonstrate how to convert
properties to make them larger or more eco-friendly. In addition, part of Wade Street was pedestrianised
and a play area was created adjacent to Owler Brook School.
In 2007 Page Hall’s terraces were decorated with hanging baskets. Working with Green City Action,
Street Force and the Burngreave Area Panel, Page Hall residents aimed to continue their successes
of 2006 in Britain In Bloom and Sheffield In Bloom. In 2007 these floral decorations won a Merit in
Britain In Bloom and were joint winners of 2007 Environment Community Award.
On receiving the award from the Lord Mayor, Ivor Wallace said, “I feel proud of Page Hall that our efforts are appreciated; our members give up their free time to get involved and raise the profile of Page Hall.”
Page Hall Community successes included a Fir Vale Funday to bring families together and initiatives to get the community to take pride in the area. Ivor as former chair of Page Hall Community Association is angry that money raised by the Council and other Housing Market Renewal Fund monies were not reinvested in the area. Ivor’s family originally left the Isle of Man in 1816 to work for the East India Company in Madras, India. Many generations later the Wallaces migrated to Burma where Ivor’s grandfather became a shoemaker. When Japanese forces invaded Burma in 1942, Ivor’s father (William) escaped into India, having no choice but to abandon his mother and sister. William’s future wife Joan Vaughan and her family were taken prisoner by the Japanese and had a tough time.
After the war, William went back to Burma to bring them all back to India to start another chapter of their lives. William married Joan in 1951 and Ivor was born in 1952. He was to be the eldest of six. William worked as a railway driver in India, but in 1961, the family moved to Sheffield. William worked at English Steel.
Attending St Catherine’s primary school and St Peter’s secondary school (Parsons Cross), Ivor developed abilities in technical drawing, maths, architecture, and product design. At sixteen Ivor became an apprentice at Denton and Best Ltd, an open die forge near Penistone Road. The company was taken over several times. Ivor left to work at Woodhouse and Rixsons Ltd near Attercliffe which became part of Firth Rixson Ltd. Even though the bosses were often difficult, Ivor says that he loved the work as an ‘estimator draughtsman’, which involves calculating all the design measurements as required by customer. Ivor eventually came back to Firth Rixson where he worked until his retirement in 2016.
His other main love has been photography. He converted his mate’s cellar and his own attic space into dark rooms originally to develop film and print in colour or black white but now he continues in digital. His other passions include Tai Chi and writing. Ivor was clear:
“I love Page Hall, its community needs to be recognised for the good that it does on a daily basis not just the bad that might occur in isolation.”
After all these years of hard work and community activism, Ivor is now planning to move to Filey. We
wish him well.