Telegraph View: She danced on determinedly

Star editor Nancy Fielder is campaigning for Pride in Sheffield.
Star editor Nancy Fielder is campaigning for Pride in Sheffield.

This week Sheffield lost one of its most inspirational, determined, imaginative and fun women.

The death of Tramlines director Sarah Nulty has left so many in this city heartbroken. She was, quite frankly, irreplaceable.

Sarah was the irrepressible spark from which many Sheffield women should learn to grow their own flame

Sarah came to Sheffield as a student and, like so many others, found she couldn’t draw herself away after graduating. She took a small music event with one stage and turned it into the country’s biggest urban music festival.

I am not exaggerating to say that we would no longer have Tramlines if it hadn’t been for Sarah’s phenomenal drive. She had an enthusiasm which was infectious, a passion which pulled you along and a touch of nuttiness which you couldn’t help but love. You can read about her over the page.

Sarah wouldn’t take no for an answer because she saw the bigger picture. She wanted Sheffield to have a festival which drew national attention, which attracted the big names and which put the city, which she made her home, on the map.

It would be easy to look at the success of Tramlines and think it was an easy road. Far from it. Somebody without Sarah’s tenacity would have given up at the demoralising lack of support and hurdles which popped up in the place of what should have been encouragement. But she had a good team around her and wouldn’t let anyone drag them down.

There will be lots of tributes in the coming days and months about Sarah’s contribution to our city’s music scene. Let me say, Sarah was all that but much more ... she was the irrepressible spark from which many Sheffield women should learn to grow their own flame.

The death of anyone at just 36 is hugely painful for everyone who knew them. The loss to Sheffield as a city will be more than any of us yet know but if there is anyone who would want Tramlines to keep thriving in such circumstances it was, of course, Sarah. RIP Sarah, but keep on dancing.