My favourite things '“ Proud to be a born and bred Steel City citizen
Simon Eastwood is the managing director of SCX, a group of engineering businesses with headquarters in Wincobank.Simon took over the day-to-day running of the family business in 1987 from his father Keith, who founded SCX in 1972. The company began life in Sheffield as Street CraneXpress, servicing and repairing overhead cranes made by its sister firm Street Crane Company, over the way in Chapel-en-le-Frith. SCX was named '˜Large Business of the Year' at the Sheffield Business Awards in December 2017, a very proud moment for Simon and his colleagues. Simon was born and bred in Sheffield and has worked his entire career in the city. He lives just south of Sheffield in the village of Dore.
Sheffield people speak their mind, you know where you stand.
This might at first seem quite abrupt, maybe more so than anywhere else, yet Sheffield folk are also extremely warm and friendly.
I have the pleasure every day of spending time with great people from across the Sheffield region, so I’m fully justified in saying that another thing Sheffield people are is very hard working.
It’s one of the many reasons that I have no desire to ever leave the city.
Millhouses is where I was born, and grew up, and I have very happy memories of my childhood there. The properties in the area make for superb family homes, with lovely gardens for the youngsters to play in.
I have very fond memories of meeting friends and playing in the Park and Lido over the summer holidays.
The Lido sadly closed in the 1980s, however the work done since then to restore the water park for local people, and with local wildlife in mind too, is very welcome.
Sheffield has a huge amount of green space and acres of woodland. In fact, it has the most trees per person of any city in Europe! These wonderful woodlands are fun and relaxing to explore, but my personal favourite place is Ecclesall Woods.
I can’t remember how many dens I must have built there, or the number of trees I climbed as a young boy.
There’s 350 acres, with 15 kilometres of footpaths.
Even now I enjoy running through the woods and taking my son on insect hunts.
It’s probably a surprising choice for one of my favourite things, but Meadowhall has played, and continues to play, a significant role in our city.
When it opened it was the second largest shopping centre in the UK, and there are exciting plans under way to extend it too.
My office has a view down from Wincobank, overlooking Meadowhall, and it’s a reminder of the constant enterprise that makes Sheffield tick. It’s also incredibly convenient to nip in to buy some lunch or that forgotten present.
Advanced manufacturing research centre
I have huge admiration for what the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) is doing for Sheffield. Its efforts are taking the city’s industrial roots, refreshing them to meet the needs of business and academia today, and pushing Sheffield’s engineering expertise into the future. AMRC has attracted Rolls Royce, Boeing and most recently McLaren, and all are very welcome additions to the city. It’s hard to imagine a more impressive trio of names to invest in the region’s technical talent. The apprentice training programme at AMRC is top class too. Our own engineering apprentices, who largely come from in and around the Sheffield region, learn their engineering skills at the fantastic facilities AMRC situated in Catcliffe.
How lucky are we to have the Peak District on our doorstep? The UK’s very first National Park offers hills, moorland, forests, and lakes – all things that give me a lot of personal enjoyment in life.
It has kept many rural cultures alive too, which in turn has fed a tourism trade that never feels overdone.
It’s simply magnificent, a very special place. Whether walking, cycling, fishing in the Derwent or just driving through it, I love it.