Favourite things: The movies shaped me - and I can’t forget Bambi

Lee Ford launch manager for Sheffield Live TV. Sheffield city hall.
Lee Ford launch manager for Sheffield Live TV. Sheffield city hall.

Born and raised in Loxley, Lee Ford, aged 50, is the recently-appointed launch manager for Sheffield Live TV, the local television channel that begins broadcasting later this year. As well as being a film maker, Lee is BBC Radio Sheffield’s film guru and plays in a rock band. He lives with his partner, Andrea, with their two cats in Ridgeway. He is passionate about film, television and music.


The Gaumont Regent Cinema, Barker's Pool, Sheffield - 27th January 1953'Opened December 1927 as The Regent. 'Gaumont Closed 1985.

The Gaumont Regent Cinema, Barker's Pool, Sheffield - 27th January 1953'Opened December 1927 as The Regent. 'Gaumont Closed 1985.

Film is my true passion. There is nothing like sitting in a cinema and there’s no better place to see films than on the big screen.

My parents introduced me to the cinema at a young age. I have a fantastic memory of going to the old Gaumont cinema in Barker’s Pool and watching Bambi which I’m still traumatised by today.

From then I fell in love with movies and it has shaped who I am. I can still remember to this day standing in awe outside Odeon on Flat Street marvelling at a poster for 2001: A Space Odyssey.

City Hall

As much as going to the cinema has defined my professional life, so has music. Listening to it, watching it, playing it and the City Hall has played a big part in my musical appreciation.

It’s a fabulous venue and it holds a lot of memories. I saw my first gig there, Thin Lizzy. I’ve promoted a club night there, filmed a music video with Joe Elliott and a concert DVD for Toby Foster. I’ve never had a chance to play there... but there’s still hope.

My garden

Yes, my garden! I’ve always been a going out person. Devonshire Quarter, West Street, the Limit, Rebels and the Wap (Wapentake bar) in the day- and of course live music at The Leadmill.

I still love a good night out, but I do enjoy just sitting in my garden and chilling.

I’m no gardener but my other half has done a fabulous job and turned it in to a wonderful retreat. There’s nothing better than a barbecue, glass of wine and getting the guitar out. Maybe staying in is the new going out after all?

Rude Shipyard Café

There’s no better way to start the weekend than going out for breakfast, usually with my pal Andy.

We’ll get up early on Saturday morning and head to The Rude Shipyard in Abbeydale Road for a stonking breakfast, to read the papers and put the world to rights.

I love the charm and curious quirkiness of the Shipyard and for some reason it reminds me of when I lived in New York.

I think it’s the fact it’s a book shop that happens to do great food, especially ‘to die for’ is their Guinness cake.

The Forum

When the Full Monty came out, I found it frustrating that it presented Sheffield as being a grey depressed wreck of a place which unfortunately perpetuated the ‘grim up north’ image.

Some of that was certainly true, but that wasn’t my Sheffield.

The Devonshire Quarter was as vibrant and exciting as any major city in the world, with glamorous young creative things who were trying to do something different: entrepreneurs, artists, film makers, musicians, DJs…

At its heart was The Forum, which was a bold addition to the city and really helped create a new Sheffield vibe.

London Road

Sheffield for a long time seemed a bit thin on its choices of restaurants but over the last few years that has certainly changed. We now have some great and diverse places to eat out.

I especially love what’s happened to London Road. It used to be my walk to The Space Centre to get my weekly bag of comics when I was a kid (yes, I was a geek) and it always felt a bit ‘edgy’. Now it’s rejuvenated offering some amazing restaurants.

Asian food is my favourite (though nothing - absolutely nothing - beats a traditional Sunday roast) and on London Road now there’s so many choices.

At a push though I will have to say my favourite has to be Wasabisabi - great, fresh Japanese food and a very entertaining Teppanyaki bar.


I grew up in Loxley. It’s a beautiful side of the city and one of my favourite walks is circular walk past the church at High Bradfield and around Damflask.

While it’s lovely any time of the year, it holds a special place at Christmas as it’s a family tradition the weekend before Christmas to take a festive stroll.

My parents and sister have been doing it since we were little with the anticipation of what Christmas would bring, we call the ‘Holly Walk’.

We still do it very year, but these days we are joined by partners, nieces and nephews and end up at The Horns for the splendid carvery.