Life on Sheffield estate features in new book

Adam Curnaw and Ruthie Ford doing a massive cross stitch.
Adam Curnaw and Ruthie Ford doing a massive cross stitch.
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A NEW book about everyday life in a Sheffield suburb was launched at the weekend during an activity event.

PX Story is a part fictional, part non-fictional take about life on the Parson Cross estate in north Sheffield.

Tiffany towers shows off her Parson Cross-themed mask.

Tiffany towers shows off her Parson Cross-themed mask.

Written by artist Ania Bas, who spent a year meeting people and groups from the community, PX Story combines folklore and urban myths with real life tales from the streets.

The book was released at the ‘I love Parson Cross’ event which took place at the Learning Zone in Wordsworth Avenue, Parson Cross.

Visitors were given a free copy of the book and children took part in creative activities including giant cross stitching and badge, sticker and mask making.

There were also live performances and films.

Maddison Dunwell get help with her mask from mum Emma Hodgkins.

Maddison Dunwell get help with her mask from mum Emma Hodgkins.

“Parson Cross has been a well of inspiration,” said Ania, aged 31.

“The estate is perceived in a very certain way by the people from the outside, who often have never visited, but know its reputation.

“Then there is the insiders’ view from people who have lived there all their lives.

“There are people who describe the area as deprived or a no-go zone, but I didn’t see it as that black and white.”

Ania, who was born in North East Poland but now lives in London, was invited by Yorkshire Artspace to spend a year in the community.

The book, which represents Ania’s first step into creative writing, is divided into two sections.

Part one is made up of fifteen fictional stories told in different narrative styles, with stories written as text message exchanges, voicemail recordings, e-mails, songs, adverts, school essays, postcards and letters to the editor.

Part two contains reactions and commentary to part one from ten contributors for whom Parson Cross is close to their hearts. They include librarians, community workers, poets, curators, artists and residents.

“The book does not aim to sugarcoat the area.

“It’s not just about the bad parts, like drugs and gangs. It’s also about those who have decent lives. I felt privileged to meet so many Parson Cross residents and was made very welcome.”