Favourite Things: No better place to call home than community

Nasima Akther at Millhouses Park cricket ground. Picture by Dean Atkins
Nasima Akther at Millhouses Park cricket ground. Picture by Dean Atkins
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Nasima Akhter is aged 37 and is one of three Labour councillors for Nether Edge in Sheffield. She is also the city’s first Asian female councillor, a role she took on to ‘give something back to the city’. She is keen to stand up for human rights, and to support the organisations that help women escape from domestic violence or help homeless people.

Nasima first came to England to study, and holds a law degree from Derby University. She also works for a local company, as well as representing her community on the council. She is a local school governor and trustee, as well as a founder of Sheffield Ladies Community Football Club.

Nasima is married with one son who attended King Ecgbert School and Silverdale School. He is now also studying marketing at university. She lives in Nether Edge, and says there is ‘no better place to call home’.

The cricket ground in Millhouses park

My son would always take me there to play football. I remember when he started to be better than me. Football there was always fun; that park always seems a safe and beautiful place to be, whatever the season.

I love all the different families that you can meet there, and the feel of peace and shared space.

The Rude Shipyard café

on Abbeydale Road

I love to look at the books, read and drink coffee there. I could spend hours there in gentle company with delicious food and interesting welcoming people.

It’s intimate and a bit private at the same time. I like the idea of buying and selling CDs and books in cafes.

The Peace gardens

I know it’s everyone’s favourite, but I love to be in the centre of a busy town, but feel that cars and traffic are out of sight.

I like to sit there Sunday morning quietly alone watching people having fun and going in the water.

It was such a visionary project. The council had to really stick their necks out to get the funding for all that city centre development with the Winter Gardens. And now it just feels such a familiar part of our city.

Umix

This is the new community sports centre in Lowfield. It’s an area with a really sparky community but there was never enough organised activity for young or older people.

There are loads of things going on there. It’s a great resource for all local groups - what I do there at the moment is take part in the women’s football.

We have a really good laugh and get fitter at the same time – what could be better?

Tea with Percie

A truly welcoming brilliant café on Abbeydale Road. Claire the owner always makes me feel at home.

I do a lot of meetings, reading and planning there. It’s easy to relax and be private, and yet focus on what I’ll be doing next.

Hathersage

This is my favourite countryside place. I love just walking around there - in sunshine or moonlight it’s always lovely. St John’s churchyard up the hill; the little shops, and the views of the hills all around.

I like it that there is good public transport there; buses and trains make it so easy to get there even if you don’t drive or cycle.

Abbeydale Road

Close to where I live, and another place I love. I like the old Abbeydale picture house and all the new and old shops around it.

It’s getting to be a real antiques and independent shops quarter, where visitors will make special trips to. I like the quietness at night and the excitement by day.

Victoria Hall

I go to the conversation club there - anyone can go - I just love being around people from different parts of the world.

The Sheffield Conversation Club offers a chance for asylum seekers and refugees to meet volunteers from the city and practice their English.

There are regular activities organised and trips out. It’s a really good place to meet people.

Carter Knowle

Junior School

I’ve got really fond memories of my son and all the people we met at the junior school – it seems a long time ago now he’s at university.

Now I’m a governor there and I see another side of the work they do there I appreciate all the teachers’ hard work even more than I used to.

Sheffield Railway Station

I like how people kiss each other good bye or hug to welcome them. Yes I’ve seen Love Actually!

It seems a really hopeful place. I like the smell and sounds of it all and the feeling of people moving all around the country doing their business.