Like many English cities, Sheffield owes its modern day position as a major urban centre to its industrial past, having pioneered advances in the production of crucible steel in the 18th century and stainless steel in the early 20th century. Although manufacturing in Sheffield has ceased to be the major industry it once was, such is the strength of its historical connection to metalwork that Sheffield United Football Club are still known by their nickname “the blades” and the city’s ice hockey team are named the Sheffield Steelers.
Perhaps surprisingly for a city with such a strong industrial heritage, Sheffield has a reputation for being England’s greenest city. Travellers taking cheap flights to Sheffield will discover a leafy town, with more trees per person than any other city in Europe spread across its 78 public parks, 10 public gardens, more than 170 woodlands and more than 134 square kilometres of national park land. In fact, it has been estimated that 61 percent of the city is green space. With more than a third of Sheffield overlapping the stunning Peak District National Park, the city is an excellent destination for hikers and nature lovers.