Paul Chambers is co-owner of Sheffield Residential, an award-winning lettings and estate agency, which celebrates it tenth anniversary next year. Sheffield born and bred, he has always been interested in buildings and this was developed when studying construction at Sheffield College, going on to secure a BSc in construction management at Sheffield Hallam University.
Paul, who lives with his partner in a city centre apartment, also runs City Crash Pad, providing high quality short term lets for individuals and companies.
Places to Eat
The great advantage of our work is that we deal with students from all over the world. Who better to recommend authentic and great value restaurants? Our Chinese tenants have pointed us in the direction of the Orient Express on West Street and Noodle Inn on Westfield Terrace.
Now there probably is a theme here – ie proximity to my office on West Street - but I do like the Wick at Both Ends. It’s partly because we are regulars and are known so we always have a good welcome. It’s a bar where everyone knows your name. I always feel relaxed and comfortable. It’s just such a good atmosphere with a mix of people and ages.
So far I’ve had to work during the festival, which has been frustrating. Music is obviously one of Sheffield’s strengths, and we produce so many good independent bands across a range of styles. It’s great that the city has a music festival that celebrates that. In my car I listen to dance and pop music from the 1980s and 1990s plus current artists. I like the fact that iTunes allows you to access such a great back catalogue.
You might expect me to say this, but I love the diversity of people and cultures in Sheffield, driven largely by the mix of overseas students at both universities, including Arabs, Chinese, Malaysian and Cypriots. We see them as they arrive in the city and then see them grow in to it. We like to feel and trust we help them to give everyone a good welcome and introduction to this city – a sort of unofficial tourist information centre. Sheffield people are generally friendly and helpful and that rubs off and is part of our own culture here too.
New and old buildings
When I was a child I remember visiting Manor Lodge many times and was fascinated by its history and the fact that Mary Queen of Scots was imprisoned there. When I was at Sheffield College, part of the course was to study some of Sheffield’s oldest buildings. On a recent holiday to Dubai, I was struck by the amazing architecture, especially the use of glass. I wish we could emulate at least some of that here. That would certainly change the Sheffield skyline!
I know everyone talks about the wonderful countryside and the picturesque villages, but it truly is. I used to love visiting Bakewell as a child and still do, particularly Bakewell Markets. And there is nothing like buying a fresh, warm Bakewell tart. I try to resist eating it before I get home, but it never happens. I buy two now – one to eat straight away and one for later. There are also some lovely pubs for lunch.
A Sheffield tradition, and the building stands out for still being in the same location, tucked between new buildings and roads that have built up around it. How do they produce all those bottles from that site? I also enjoy the waft of the smell of the relish being brewed. Delicious on shepherd’s pie or cheese on toast.