OPINION

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INVEST IN ENGINEERING

Two pioneering skills initiatives were being unveiled in Sheffield as the third and easily the most successful Global Manufacturing Festival was getting underway. The Work-Wise Employability Summer Camp aims to offer up to 200 youngsters a two week taste of what a career in engineering could be like. Meanwhile, the RISE initiative aims to encourage small firms to boost their growth by taking on talented graduates as interns for six months. Both could play a crucial role in the future of manufacturing and enterprise in the Sheffield City Region – but only if the business community rises to the challenge. It is essential that companies make every effort to create both the Summer Camp placements and graduate internships that are being sought. If they don’t, they will have only themselves to blame when they find themselves deprived of new blood, ready and willing to take up the challenge of ensuring the region remains a centre for global manufacturing.

NOT ANOTHER CHAIN STORE

It’s happening again. A major supermarket firm is almost certain to open another store in an area already already overpopulated with national chains. Sainsbury’s wants to set up shop in the old Hadfield pub, on Barber Road, Crookesmoor, and has won permission to sell alcohol ahead of a planning meeting next week. Council officers say there aren’t sufficient grounds for refusal - but surely something can be done to prevent Sainsbury’s moving in. The firm runs four branches nearby at Bolsover Street, Broomhill, Crookes and the University Tram Stop - more than enough to satisfy students in the neighbourhood. Concerns have been raised over noise and drinking, but the issue runs deeper than that. The shop may boost the economy by filling the gap left by the Hadfield, but it will simply mean students aren’t engaging with genuine, local traders, experiencing nothing of Sheffield. Chain supermarkets are homogenising our streets and are, to put it bluntly, making the city boring.