Favourite Things: Celebrating city which creates a working future

Charlotte Cook infront of the bandstand in Weston Park. Picture: Andrew Roe
Charlotte Cook infront of the bandstand in Weston Park. Picture: Andrew Roe

Originally from Lincoln, Charlotte Cook is the enterprise development assistant at Sheffield Hallam University and is currently on a year-long placement from her BA Marketing degree. She is spending this year supporting students and graduates of the university who wish to become self-employed. Charlotte currently manages The Hatchery, Sheffield Hallam’s free office space which has seen hundreds of entrepreneurs come through its doors since its opening a decade ago. To celebrate its 10th anniversary this year, she is organising a reunion event on June 30. Charlotte recently came runner-up in in the Step up to Leadership Awards’ On Campus category.

Depot Bakery

A recent discovery by me and my housemate; it has now become our favourite Saturday hang-out. Open from 8am-2pm every Saturday, they offer the best baked goods I’ve ever tasted; from donuts filled with coconut cream to lamb sausage rolls! I love that the building has a great industrial feel and with its stripped back interior and festoon lighting, it would be the perfect location for a party. An added bonus is that it’s only a 10 minute walk from my house, so it’s only too easy to stroll down and treat myself on a Saturday morning.

Pointing Dog

To celebrate our first year together my boyfriend, Jack, took me to a ‘surprise’ restaurant on Ecclesall Road. I had no idea where we were going when we jumped in the taxi but I wasn’t disappointed. We managed to polish off a starter each, an 800G platter of steak between us and somehow squeezed in some elderflower sorbet for dessert! I’d thoroughly recommend it for special occasions; it’s a lovely building with a great atmosphere and fabulous food. I’d suggest going for an early dinner as for most of the meal we had the whole restaurant to ourselves.

The Hatchery

Since August last year, I have been managing the university’s free office space for entrepreneurial students and graduates to use to set up their businesses. This year we are celebrating its 10th anniversary and I am organising an event in June to bring together past tenants and everyone who has supported our work over the last 10 years. As the Hatchery is in the Workstation we are holding the event there and we hope it will be a great celebration of all the success Sheffield Hallam entrepreneurs have gone on to have.

Weston Park

In between my first and second year of university I really liked packing a picnic and heading up to Weston Park; sometimes the ‘picnic’ would only be a lunchtime meal deal but still just as enjoyable! The bandstand in the park is so pretty I often wish I could just pick it up and pop it in my back garden. The entrepreneur in me thinks that it would make a lovely café in the summer and it would be great to see people enjoying its space more. Weston Park holds great memories of my first few dates with Jack; that always makes a place extra special.


Jack and I are quite big foodies and when we discovered the sharing platter at Smoke we just had to tell all of our friends. I always recommend it as one of the best places to eat out in the city centre and if you’ve not tried their pulled pork I thoroughly recommend that you do! I don’t recommend going on your lunch break though as you’ll get so full you’ll just want to nap all afternoon.

The Great Escape

In September last year I met Hannah, a PGCE student who wanted to bring live escape rooms to Sheffield with her boyfriend Peter. I have to admit, I didn’t quite understand the concept at first but essentially you get locked in a room for 45 minutes with up to five people and you have to try and solve problems to escape. With our support they have been able to launch their business on Sidney Street and my colleagues and I thoroughly enjoyed trying to save the world in 45 minutes!

Collard Manson

I love wondering down Division Street on a sunny day, and popping into Collard Manson is a highlight. I love the natural colours and simplicity of some of their designs. It’s one of my favourite places in Sheffield to buy presents for my friends as I know they’ll always have something a little bit different and special. I don’t really have regrets, but not buying an amazing satchel from there when I saw it two years ago is one!


Sitting in Leopold Square with friends and cocktails in the evening is one of my favourite things to do. The cocktails are great and if you like coffee I recommend trying an espresso martini from here, a perfect Friday night drink.