Archive for the ‘Sheffield’ Category

ShuJu Kitchen

May 1, 2019

Taiwanese pop up kitchen Union St

I was heading to Union St, a co-working space, coffee shop and pop up kitchen. Each day Monday to Friday different food. On Wednesday Taiwanese food being swerved by ShuJu Kitchen.

So far I had not had much luck. My first two attempts, no food left. My third attempt they were not there.

Fourth time lucky, Taiwanese food was being swerved by ShuJu Kitchen and it looked popular as people queuing, and even better looked good.

I tried stir-fried chicken, and better still tasted good. Generous portion size.

My only criticism the rice was nearly cold and brown rice is healthier than white rice. Otherwise excellent and I can see why popular.

There was a choice of four options, and when I had finished, only two options left.

I thanked the two Taiwanese girls and said it had been worth making the effort to find them. I asked of street food. Not currently as they lack the mobility, and Lincoln would be too far.

I was thanked for my compliments on their food, and given a tiny little origami figure in appreciation of my kind comments. I remarked the last time I had been given an origami figure was when travelled by train from Bassano del Grappapa to Venice with Japanese friends. I then learnt, Taiwan heavily influenced by Japanese culture as had been occupied by Japan for many years.

Pop up kitchen at Union St on Wednesday lunchtime and house parties.

They have a good deal with the coffee guy, he supplies the coffee, he gets in return a dish.

I learn that the coffee kiosk Motore Cafe had run a pop up coffee stall for several months, I had actually learnt from the coffee stall, when they left, such was the popularity of their coffee, Union St was requested to supply the same quality coffee, hence support from Dark Woods.

Union St, co-working space, coffee shop, pop up kitchen Monday to Friday.

Designing cities for people not developers

April 10, 2019

What I have seen and spent what seems to be a lifetime fighting, is corrupt town halls pandering to greedy developers, fast bucks, palms greased, with result every town looks the same, the same corporate chains dominate the town centre, the same corporate chains find in every ghastly shopping centre.

This neither brings in visitors nor is popular with locals who see familiar landmarks destroyed, lose their sense of place, money is drained out of the local economy, then large chains close, go bust, expanded on debt, leaving behind desolation, as we have seen with BHS, House of Fraser, Debenhams and many other zombie companies kept afloat by their banks.

Corrupt town planners who have not a clue what constitutes good town centre planning or how local economies function love big development. Big development lots of money sloshing around, some of which finds its way into the wrong pockets.

A few examples illustrates failure of good town centre design and planning.

Sincil Street runs parallel to the High Street in Lincoln. A street of Victorian buildings, local indie businesses, or was. Up until a few years ago, Sincil Street between the hours of ten in the morning and four in the afternoon was busier than the High Street, the High Street the same corporate chains find anywhere and everywhere. Now Sincil Street is being destroyed, the local council acting in cahoots with the local coop, local businesses driven out, chains brought in, Victorian building destroyed.

Enter the picture Lincoln BIG and Visit Lincoln. Both are hyping the chains, it gets worse Visit Lincoln being paid to do so.

Many towns now have businesses development groups, accountable to no one, act for and controlled by big businesses, not one vote per business, based upon the size of local business tax.

Experience Guildford employs Town Rangers, no one knows what purpose they serve other than to deliver a glossy A4 newssheet to local businesses which goes straight in the bin. They also subsidise the town centre car parks at Christmas, the one time of the year when the car parks are full to overflowing.

Latest examples of Lincoln BIG, take selfies and post on instagram, install an app that has access to data on phone and if use default facebook log in access to facebook data and that of friends

Ask any local businesses what is killing them. High rents, high local business taxes. The local coop owns the properties hikes the rents, Lincoln BIG exacts a levy on top of the local business taxes. Local businesses see no benefits.

Visit Lincoln masquerades as a tourism body, acts as a quasi-PR agency, is paid to hype the corporate chains moving into and destroying the character of Sincil Street.

Fake-Left Guardian had an article describing the dire state of Sheffield. The local council responded with eight tweets, big development taking place, corporate chains listed, same chains find anywhere. The same Sheffield City Council that destroyed thousands if not tens of thousands of street trees, harassed and criminalised protesters.

Empty two-coach Northern Fail train Lincoln to Sheffield, hour and twenty minutes only starts to fill as nears Sheffield passing through small towns like Worksop, making the point, not worth visiting for corporate chains find anywhere.

One of the chains mentioned, 200 Degrees, a small coffee chain serving mediocre coffee, the same chain hyped by Visit Lincoln and Lincoln BIG.

Oh the irony, when Sheffield has a thriving coffee scene and 200 Degrees empty.

In Sheffield Union St, coffee shop, co-working space, pop up kitchen, community hub located in an occupied building, Now Then, an interesting magazine, supported by local community and local businesses, published by a not-for-profit.

Farnborough destroyed half its town centre for a superstore, an estate of social houses surrounded a grassy green destroyed for the car park. A 17th century inn destroyed for a drive-thru McDonald’s.

Wastegate, chain eateries and a superstore on the edge of Aldershot town centre, destroyed the town centre now boarded-up retail units and the chain eateries pulling out from Wastegate.

In the centre of Guildford Tunsgate Quarter, a sterile shopping centre, boarded-up units, same crap cooperate chains find in every ghastly shopping centre across the country, devoid of people. The only use, provides a handy short cut. One of the crap corporate chains Cosy Club, a fake 1930s bar, so fake a Monty Python parody of fake, Visit Guildford promoted on twitter over a dozen times.

Contrast with North Laine in Brighton, three long streets, similar Victorian street scene as Sincil Street in Lincoln, local indie businesses, butcher, baker cheesemonger, bookshops, music shops, coffee shops, restaurants, worker coops, not a chain in sight, always busy.

When all places look the same they become soul destroying, we lose our sense of place, alienation sets in.

We need to green our cities, protect our existing green spaces.

In Farnborough they are destroying the remaining green space for development, in Sheffield tens of thousands of street trees have been cut down.

City centres should be pedestrianised, delivery vehicles park on the periphery, deliver by hand cart and trolley.

Cities generate data, the data should be used as a common good. Citizens may consent to access to their data receiving benefits in return, the data randomised and made available to local businesses.

The city should support and encourage local businesses and local coops, encourage to network with each other

Citizens need to seize control of their local Town Halls, open to public participation, network with other citizen-controlled Town Halls. No more one party states.

There is not a conflict with locals and tourists. There is only conflict when lose businesses serving locals and replace with businesses selling overpriced tourist tat, when AirBnB moves in, rents are hiked, but that is a problem of over-tourism lack of regulation, rather than tourism per se.

At the time of the English Civil War, the Diggers asked the question: who owns the space? The space they were asking of was land, who owns the land?

They saw God created Man and Woman as equal, the land was owned by everyone and no one, it was a common wealth. 

The question is as pertinent today. Who owns the space, who owns the public parks, public space, the empty buildings, the data we generate?

Space is not static, something to be owned. It is dynamic, only has meaning if used, lived on, shared, enjoyed. Derelict buildings we must occupy, put to use on behalf of the community, fight the loss of community space.

Afternoon in Sheffield

March 27, 2019

Refurbished Northern Fail worse than before.

Empty two-coach Northern Fail train Lincoln to Sheffield makes the point, why travel from Lincoln o Sheffield

The main entrance from Sheffield Station leads to city centre. I wished to leave by back entrance, was there a back entrance as I wished to be at the other side of the tracks?

I asked at the Information, I wished to get to the other side. They said no, only leads to trams, and signage only points to trams. They added, as if to say no one would wish to go there, leads to the estates.

When leaving by main entrance, can see flats across the valley.

I headed out to the trams, carefully crossed the tram lines, and walked up the slope towards the flats theough….

uncliy when I cross d the tracks, there was a sign pointing to outh Street Kitchen.

outh Street Kitchen is a hdden gem. Easy enough to find if no ow follow the apth and it is at the top below the flats.

I was reminded of Puerto de la Cruz, always find a bar-cafe often more than one at the foot of a block of flats.

Very new, a little over a year old. Open, light and airy. Seeing the barista disappear, I followed, to find a flight of stairs, and a much larger area on the first floor.

Coffee excellent. Food looked good too, but no time to stay as I was heading back to the station, then to Union St.

I wished to try the pop up kitchen, today Taiwanese, but to my annoyance too late, already packed up even though only lunch time.

Having a pop kitchen is a great idea, but they must get their act together.

I picked up copies of Now Then, a local freebie magazine, highly recommended. Not the usual glossy that goes straight in the bin.

— to be continued —-

Union St

March 20, 2019

Union St, co-working space, coffee shop, pop up kitchen Monday to Friday.

Union St is one of those places you walk by and pop in.

Spring Equinox in Sheffield

March 20, 2019

Spring Equinox when day equals night, from now on the days are longer the nights shorter.

The first day of spring.

International Happiness Day.

A lovely warm and sunny day, Sheffield hit 19.4C.

Fake-Left Guardian had a recent article on the dire state of Sheffield city centre. The local council, a one party state, hit back with eight tweets, the gist of which, Sheffield has the same crap cooperate chains as everywhere else.

Why would anyone visit Sheffield for the same crap corporate chains as every ghastly shopping centre?

As if to prove the point, an empty two-coach Northern Fail train Lincoln to Sheffield. It only started to fill part way through the journey.

The last time I visited Sheffield maybe in the 1970s, it was run down and derelict. Opening of Meadow Hall did not help.

Outside Sheffield Station, no signs pointing to city centre. It was thus follow where every one else appeared to be heading, up past a water feature, cross a road, and follow a broad pedestrianised path surrounded by Sheffield Hallam University.

Half up the wide pedestrianised street a little coffee kiosk, Motore Cafe serving Dark Woods coffee. A local roastery. How local is local, Sheffued no but Yorkshire yes.

Theen at the topd of the wide walk nothing. Where to the city centre. Sign osts would help. As would street names.

I was after Tamper Sellers Wheel. With the help of a local I managed to find. Confusin I was looking fora street Sellers Wheel. It is the name of the building.

Sellers Wheel an old indsutrial building put to good use.

I wa sunderimpressed and soewheat dispaanted. Too loud , trying to hard to be trendy.

I had a big fat overpriced roll for lunch. Hame isnide but spoilt by msuatrd. Why taint good ham. If needmustatrd, a little on the sdie of the palte. It is loke putting sugar in a coffee, chocolate dumped on top. Ina word don’t.

I did not have a coffee. Ozone coffee and it si never great.

On leaving I noticed they also had Dark Woods. V60? No, Kalita Wave.

Ozone has recently acqired Hasbean. They opear a stow comapnies witha holdin comany. I expressed surise Dark Woods not Hasbean. They said it would change. A very bad idea. Ditch Ozonefor Hasbena nd keep Drak Woods

There is a a second Tamper, but I did not find nore the other coffee shops I wished to find.

I came across Union St a real gem, an example of Respace, a derelict buidling put to good use.

Co-working space, a coffee shop, and pop up stree food. sadly I was toolaste for Tawianaies.

The coffee Dark Woods. Like Stokes in Lincoln, Dark Woods appears to ahve a local monploy.

It was then after a wonder down a street with the smae crap chains sas everwhere lese, time to head bacj to the Staion.

I looked in tamer Selles Wheel and picked up a Dark Woods Panama single origin.

— to be continued —-