Sunday, October 12, 2008

It was Forty Years Ago today

Well, more or less. I came to Sheffield as an 18 year old student in October 1968, and never left. Here I still am. Until two years ago I hadn’t lived more than a mile in any direction from where I lived when I first came to Sheffield. One of the main roads into & out of Sheffield is West Street and I’ve spent my entire career, in various different jobs in the University and Civil Service, within a mile of West Street. If I were a sheep I’d be “hefted to my hill”. I’ve sometimes thought of myself like that.

Sounds boring doesn’t it. And yet, and yet…. It doesn’t feel that way. Sheffield is where I met my wife, married, raised two children, had two allotments and used as a springboard for piles of interesting journeys. We thought hard about leaving entirely when the place sank into a slough of despond in the 90’s. Sheffield has a massive chip on its shoulder about not being Leeds, the regional capital. In the aftermath of the end of the steel industry that caused a “nobody loves us, everybody hates us, we’re going down the garden to eat worms” attitude. But it never will be the regional capital and has now, thankfully, reinvigorated itself and carved/is carving a different identity altogether.

None of that has anything to do with allotmentaria but I thought you’d want to know. If you don’t, well I’ve told you anyway!!

As for the allotment, it’s looking much better now. I had a massive strimming session today so most of it now looks halfway tidy. There’s more to do of course and I need to get some manure delivered so I can spend a happy weekend shovelling.......


RobD said...

OK, not sure where to start, seemed a little familiar/weird reading that... I came to Sheffield just the 20 years ago this month as a student, but other than that reading this entry pretty much matches up with my life. Met my wife here, 2 kids, 2 allotments, worked for Civil Service, Uni and NHS all within sight of West St. If that was enough I'm getting a load of manure delivered at the weekend!

Woody Wilbury said...

Crikey, that is weird.

You look to be very active on the Hagg Hill site, with a Facebook entry and all. Respect! My two allotments weren't run at the same time, in fact there was sizeable gap between them so if you're running two at the same time I'm seriously impressed.