A WORRIED hair stylist who runs a salon near to the scene of a New Year’s Day shooting in Sheffield said he is determined to sell up and move his business out of the area - as customers are being put off by the neighbourhood’s violent reputation.
James Worrall, who owns Love Your Hair, on London Road, said he has had to reduce prices in a bid to attract more trade and is struggling to keep staff.
He also said the shooting - in which a 45-year-old man from Manor was fired at close to Hill Street - was ‘the last straw’.
“Customers don’t want to come to the area,” he said.
“It just seems like it’s getting more dangerous and a little bit menacing.
“It definitely does feel like the last straw. People are frightened and upset.”
James, aged 34, said he opened Love Your Hair on London Road in 2007, having previously run a salon in Beauchief.
“We had a lot of customers from Dore and Derbyshire but they stopped coming here,” he said.
“It’s an area I thought was going to get better, but I made a mistake. I felt it would be quite safe, I always thought it was quite a bohemian place to have a hairdresser’s and quite liked the fact there were lots of different ethnic groups.”
James added: “It’s very tough, it’s a hard time at the moment. All we’re getting coming in is students.”
He said he was concerned that a buyer might never be found for the salon, for which he pays rent of up to £18,000 a year.
“I want to get out now, but I can’t leave until somebody else comes in,” James continued.
“I really did think there was a future here and there might be a chance of selling it on one day.
“I put my life savings into this, at one point we had 10 people working here but they all left within a year. It’s worrying.”
The London Road shooting happened at around 4.30am on January 1, around 90 minutes after an 18-year-old male was shot in the abdomen on grassland near Halfway Gardens, Halfway.
Two men remain in custody over the Halfway incident, while a team of detectives is investigating the London Road case.
Supt Martin Hemingway, from South Yorkshire Police, said officers are taking ‘robust action’, and has appealed for witnesses to come forward. Both shootings are believed to be targeted.
“There is no reason for the general public to be alarmed,” Supt Hemingway said.