Victory welcomed in fight for Sheffield

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Victory in the campaign to protect Sheffield’s trading name from being used by cheap foreign imitations has been praised by readers and politicians.

Deputy Prime Minister and Sheffield Hallam MP Nick Clegg has intervened and said the proposal will not happen - thanks to a public outcry led by The Star and pressure from the Master Cutler.

More than 500 people have signed a petition on the Downing Street website against the plans.

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills was consulting on whether to scrap a host of protected names including Sheffield’s to reduce ‘red tape’ for firms.

The Cutlers’ Company currently approves requests to use the name. Master Cutler Neil MacDonald warned axing the protection could risk Sheffield’s reputation for quality goods.

Sheffield South East Labour MP Clive Betts said: “I think it is the right outcome that the protected status has been saved - but it seems ridiculous they make an announcement, consult on it, then before consultation is finished Nick Clegg says the status has been saved.

“If the implications of axing Sheffield’s status were initially overlooked by the Government, it’s an example of incompetence.”

Sheffield Central Labour MP Paul Blomfield added: “I’m pleased the campaign initiated by the Master Cutler and backed by The Star has been successful.”

Mr Blomfield said he would be seeking confirmation of the U-turn in the House of Commons.

Brightside and Hillsborough MP David Blunkett added: “What we need is a rapid response from Business Secretary Vince Cable to turn this into a concrete outcome.

“Havoc can be caused and anxiety increased by London based politicians and civil servants failing to understand the impact of what they presumably think to be ‘a good idea’.”

Coun Shaffaq Mohammed, Liberal Democrat leader on Sheffield Council, said: “I’m delighted Nick has intervened to protect the city’s reputation.”

Star reader MJB66 said: “There are a lot of halfwits in Westminster.”