This week just makes me realise how proud we are as Sheffielders to have such a green city. I know that is why Sheffielders love the parks and green spaces around them.
A Quieter Night-time for All
I have had a meeting this week to discuss how we are going to address the needs of local people who want to have a dedicated night-time noise nuisance service. It is really important that those people, who are being blighted by noise in the night, can have a response from the Council. I am pleased to say that later on this year that is exactly what will happen.
Green and Environmental Jobs
I met Barry King this week, who is part of the Global Eco Fuel Solutions. This is a company that is looking at using waste to make eco friendly fuel. I talked to him about the possibility of him relocating to the city, and made it clear that Sheffield would be very interested in working with his company. Not only will it help the environment in an innovative solution but would help to create local green jobs as well.
I went to a meeting of local community representatives at Broomhall to listen to their views on how they want to take their community forward. I am pleased that we were able to begin to put some ideas down which will, in particular, help the young people between 18 and 25 to get a job and training opportunities. I have agreed to set up a session for local employers and trainers to go into the area and help local young people to find jobs.
Young People – Listening to their Views
I was happy to meet with Harrison Carter, who is one of the Youth MPs for Sheffield.
This week has also been the week of the Full Council, where all the 84 Councillors get together to discuss important issues.
Members of the public can come and ask questions and petitions without notice, which is always an important part of democracy for me.
It is really important that I, as Leader, and my Cabinet, are held to account by Sheffield people. Sheffielders being who they are, they let us know exactly what they think, and ask some very demanding and important questions.
Key issues that were discussed in the Council meeting included the Sustainable Communities Act. Sheffield has asked the Government to change national law so that we can do things such as have control over the total Post Office network within Sheffield as a Council, and also help people grow green, local food by taking over local development areas that have not been used for over six months.
Also discussed at Council was our desire to try to ensure we get more Council and affordable homes within Sheffield. It is worth noting that already we have £69 million allocated, which will provide over a 1,000 new homes over the next few years.
Meadowhall – Important to the city!
I went to visit Darren Pearce, who is the Centre Director of Meadowhall, and discussed how we can work together to ensure that Meadowhall is not seen as a threat to the city centre but rather as complementary. We talked through a number of issues, including how the Source, which is the training element of Meadowhall, is helping to showcase Sheffield. This is the scheme where young people, who are looking to learn about merchandising, get the chance to dress windows within the city centre, which are currently standing empty while we are waiting for the Hammerson Development to take place.
Ten Green Flags – All in a Row
I was very pleased to go up to Weston Park to showcase Sheffield’s National Awards, known as Green Flags. These are the gold medals for green parks and gardens awarded nationally. Sheffield has got the most in Yorkshire, which is absolutely brilliant.
I was able to thank the people who work for the Parks Department as well as local people who are part of ‘Friends Groups’ who tenderly make sure we have lots of colour across our city.
Picnic in Weston Park
While I was out at Weston Park I saw a group of young people from the Sheffield Community Church, who were enjoying the greenery and surroundings in Weston Park. They had just been to the Museum, which is free of charge, and had some education about the city and then went on to have a picnic and a run around on the green areas in Weston Park. It was really good to see Sheffielders enjoying the parks in the city.
Manufacturing for the Long Term
I met with the Lord Mayor of London who is the spokesperson for banking in the City of London. We discussed key issues in the financial sector, but I made it very clear that Sheffield’s economic base was really strong and that the banks and financial institutions must take a long term view to help our manufacturing businesses to continue to grow and produce world beating products. It is no good taking a short term view when it comes to the manufacturing strengths that we have in Sheffield.
Sheffield the real Capital of Yorkshire
On Saturday August 1st I was outside the Town Hall handing out white roses to passers by to celebrate Yorkshire Day. I wore a t-shirt saying “Sheffield the real capital of Yorkshire” and was really impressed by the pride and warmth of Sheffield people for standing for their city. We know we have a little gem in Sheffield and on Saturday we made sure that the rest of Yorkshire heard that too.
Victoria Park – Broomhill – Another Green Area
Again, another visit to a green space within a little suburb of Sheffield in the ward I represent – Broomhill. I was able to attend the opening of the wonderful Victoria Park, by Parkers Lane.
I would like to thank the local friends group, who had really rallied round and ensured that what was becoming a derelict piece of land has become a green gem in the centre of Broomhill.
I am always trying to make sure that Sheffield is a place where everyone matters, and that we all, as Sheffielders, meet our full potential.