The ROCO (pronounced ‘row-co’) is a new co-operative dedicated to the development of the creative industries in Sheffield. The project itself has been two years in the making, the brainchild of local social entrepreneur Andrea Burns and her business partner Chris Hill, but as of this month it steps up a gear with the launch of a public share offer.

The plan is to transform a row of seven Grade II listed Georgian buildings on Glossop Road into a 17,000 sq ft development which will include offices, art studios, shops, meeting and co-working spaces, two galleries, a cafe bar, a deli, a roof garden and a maker shed kitted out with micro manufacturing tools. Located between the Students Union and the Harley, the ROCO will give the city’s creative community access to high-tech equipment and work space, becoming a hub of collaboration, partnership and cross-pollination in a city famed for its artistic and entrepreneurial output.

We don’t need to tell you that this will be an amazing development for Sheffield. Andrea and Chris have already secured over £600,000 of investment to restore and develop the buildings themselves, but to bring the project to life they are launching a share offer on 1 May, giving the community the chance to support The ROCO. Anyone can invest £200 or more in the co-op, giving them voting powers, a 5% return on their investment and discounted use of retail and co-working space. More than this, they will be supporting a really worthwhile project that will undoubtedly give rise to some amazing developments for the city.

For more information, go to or email


Sheffield, S6

High up on a steep hill overlooking the city is the little gem of Walkley. It is home to a nest of independent traders who are at the top of their game, making this area not only a fantastic place to live but also a worthy destination.

Travel down South Road and you will find Beeches of Walkley, the inner city farm shop specialising in local produce. Chris and Donna who run the shop have a sound ethos behind the business, making sure the produce is locally sourced and ethical, while also being incredible value - award-winning meats, ‘scoop your own’ frozen fruit, vegetables, roast potatoes, pastries, jams, chutneys, ice cream, honey and much more.

A few doors down is Gerties, where you can try out Beeches’s award-winning sausages in one of the best fry ups in the city. Julie, the women behind the venture, is reworking British cafe culture with a modern twist and it really works. The place is always packed with everyone from students to retired couples. The food is fantastic and so are the drinks. Try a Sherbet Dip or Bakewell Tart tea or a good old Northern Brew.

The godfather of Walkley, the award-winning Vito’s has been serving top-quality Italian food for 17 years. All the meat and fish is seasonal and locally sourced. Try the Capasante Al Puree Di Asparigi - scallops with olive oil, parsley, lemon and asparagus puree - or the Filetto Alla Gorgonzola, a sumptuous fillet steak cooked with Gorgonzola cheese, onions, cream, white wine and parsley. If you are lucky you will also get to meet the man himself. Walkley this way.

SIV Tickets

SIV runs some of the largest and most reputable venues, event spaces and sporting facilities in Sheffield, including the City Hall, iceSheffield and Ponds Forge. As of very recently, they also provide a one-stop online shop for tickets to a multitude of events happening all over Yorkshire and beyond.

Offering live music, local festivals, stand-up comedy, theatre, boxing and more, SIV Tickets covers venues large and small, from local favourites like the Leadmill, the Harley and the Greystones to larger Sheffield institutions and regional locations like Sherwood Forest and Doncaster Dome. Visit or stop in at their box office at Meadowhall if you find yourself in that neck of the woods.

Mosborough Music Festival

7 June

Now in its fourth year, Mosborough Music Festival is growing year on year, with highly affordable ticket prices (£20 plus booking) and laudable charity fundraising goals.

This year’s bookings include The Farm, The Twang, Lucy Spraggan, Soulfiresaints and Missing Andy, backed up by six other top-quality bands. Previous years have seen the likes of Reverend & The Makers, Paul Heaton, Bad Manners, Neville Staple and The Beautiful South play at this south Sheffield event. Sited at the end of Westfield Crescent in Mosborough, it is easily reached on the number 55 bus and is well connected to Sheffield train station and the Supertram. Under 13s are free and students can get 25% off by buying tickets from selected outlets.

Open Up

10-11 May

Open Up 2014 is the 16th annual open studios event for Sheffield and South Yorkshire, with over 100 artists opening their doors to offer the public a glimpse of their varied studio spaces and working practices. There will be free exhibitions, demonstrations, workshops and open events all over the city and beyond - far too many to mention here, but visit the website and click ‘map’ for a full list. You can also browse by artist name or preview all artists and studios.

We recommend you visit Kelham Island Arts Collective (Lion Works, S3 8DB) on 10 May and Sheffield Print Club (Lenton St, S2 4BH) on 11 May, but the beauty will lie in seeking out your own favourites.

Bird’s Yard

Chapel Walk

Bird’s Yard is just what Sheffield city centre needs. A collaboration of local designers, artists and makers of all kinds, it is an emporium showcasing creative output from many of the talented individuals based in the city.

Bird’s Yard is spread across two floors and houses everything from jewellery, crafts and beauty products to t-shirts, quirky teas (get yourself down to Gerties), art prints, handmade gift cards and mini speakers built into tobacco tins. This hive of independence is a stone’s throw from the monotony of Fargate but couldn’t be further from it in terms of ethos and character. Well worth a visit when you’re knocking about in town and need an escape.

EPIC Fitness

Liam Shaw has over 19 years’ experience in exercise and nutrition and has turned his talents to running EPIC Fitness. Liam offers personal training, but for people on a budget this is the next best thing. It is affordable and flexible, with the option to pay per session, per month or as a block booking.

The sessions are so fun you’ll forget you’re doing exercise and are suitable for all levels of fitness. Bootcamp sessions take place in Endcliffe Park (come rain or shine), while Insanity and Kettle Bell are in Trinity Hall, but check the website for more details. It’s not just about looking fit, it’s about being fit - and being fit can change your life.

Filthy Gorgeous

322 Abbeydale Road

Filthy Gorgeous is a fantastic organic goods shop on Abbeydale Road run by Angela Howsego, who has been running Wild Star Food for the last six years. They sell everything you could want, from organic fruit and vegetables (including fruit and veg box deliveries) to eggs, chia seeds and beauty products for a lifestyle that doesn’t consume products full of chemicals and additives.

Filthy Gorgeous is a company that really cares about paying producers a fair price for their products whilst being as affordable as possible for the shopper. They also have an extensive range of organic and biodynamic wines with tastings taking place on Saturdays, so get yourself down there and sample the goods.