Favourite Things: ‘The best thing about the city is its people’

Life long Blades fan Alyson Siddall at Bramall Lane
Life long Blades fan Alyson Siddall at Bramall Lane

Alyson Siddall was born in Hunters Bar Sheffield, then lived at Sheffield Lane Top, before leaving the city to study at University in Manchester.

She trained and worked as a solicitor in London. She returned to Sheffield in 1988 when she joined Howells, becoming a Partner in 1991.

Castle Square subway, Sheffield - 8th September 1992'Hole in the road'C & A

Castle Square subway, Sheffield - 8th September 1992'Hole in the road'C & A

Alyson specialises in family law – in particular divorce and finances and heads the reputable family department in Sheffield.

She lives in Millhouses with her partner, who is also a solicitor, two children and dog Fabio.

Alyson thinks that the best things about Sheffield is the warmth of the people, the humour which pervades every part of life here the scenery inside and outside the city and, of course, a certain football team.

Happy memories

I remember the hole in the road where all sorts of people used to congregate, the fish tank and the enormous Christmas tree which arrived each year. It was the landmark which everyone knew.

There was a wonderful toy shop called Redgates. One of the highlights of Christmas was a visit Redgates which was just off the Moor.

The largest village in England

The largest village in England is what Sheffield is often referred to.

My family have lived here for generations and it never ceases to amaze me how we are all interconnected.

Talk to anyone and you will invariably have a friend or colleague in common.

The resilience, humour and warmth of the people

We haven’t had an easy time of it with the blitz, steel and then miners strikes.

My nan was a Woman of Steel and I was brought up with often humorous stories of the dark times.

Our sense of humour is captured so well in the film “The Full Monty”.

Our warmth I am sure is one of the reasons that so many students stay on here after finishing their studies.

My daughter chose Sheffield University over many others - she didn’t want to leave.

My most inspirational teacher at school came to Sheffield after being forced to leave his native South Africa.

Whilst he was a political prisoner of the then South African Government he was sponsored by teachers at Ecclesfield School and came to Sheffield when he had nowhere else to go.

I like to think that we have given help and sanctuary to those who need it. We have a lot to be proud of.

The hills and greenery

When I lived in Manchester and London I found that I really missed our hills.

I learned to drive in London so was great in traffic but I still struggle sometimes with my hill starts.

No matter where you are in Sheffield you are never far away from a spectacular view – be it over the city, parks or out over the countryside.

My grandfather had a dairy farm on what is now Hanover Way. Although this has long since gone, there are little green oases everywhere even in the city centre.

I live near to the ancient Ecclesall woods – a wonderful place to walk my dog even in the depths of winter, but it is particularly stunning in the springtime when the bluebells are out.

Restaurants and Pubs

I am a fan of Indian food – the more authentic and hotter the better. My favourite take away is Apna Lahore on Abbeydale Road – their fish curry is fantastic.

I am fortunate to live near to some great pubs - the Millhouses and Waggon and Horses but my favourite is the Cherry Tree on Carterknowle Road – it’s friendly, not too busy and the drinks are good and reasonably priced. The café next door is excellent too.

My Favourite View

My favourite view is my seat at BDBL. I come from a long line of Unitedites, My grandparents were season ticket holders almost 100 years ago.

I have had the same seat at Bramall Lane for 28 years. I have seen some wonderful games sat in that seat over the years.

Again, it’s a great place to hear the wit and humour of Sheffield people .

We have had a brilliant last 18 months - long may it continue; thank you Chris Wilder and the players.