Sheffield’s amazing surroundings are inspiring outdoor firms to do business in the city – adding more than £53 million to the economy per year.
Research has revealed outdoor businesses in the city have created more than 1,500 full-time equivalent jobs, with a further 2,647 volunteers working to promote activities on offer.
Sheffield launched as ‘the outdoor city’ last year and an economic strategy behind the brand has been published.
And now a study by Sheffield Hallam University found outdoor recreation is generating more than £53m for the city every year.
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Sheffield is home to some of the world’s most innovative outdoor companies.
They include clothing firm Buffalo Systems, known throughout the world for its Pertex technology that draws moisture away from a person’s skin. It employs 26 people in Sheffield across a range of skilled roles.
Joint owner Sue Mansell said: “As a team we are all inspired by the outdoors. Amongst us you’ll find keen mountain bikers, walkers, water-sport enthusiasts, cyclists, runners and mountaineers.
“We live and breathe the outdoor lifestyle and the products we design and manufacture here in Sheffield are based on an-in-depth understanding of what people, who, like us, take to the outdoors whatever the elements, need. I couldn’t think of a better UK city for a business like ours.”
A string of other firms have set up in the city – inspired by its great surroundings.
Cubar Cycling Apparel, a clothing firm named after Curbar Edge in the Peaks set up three months ago by artists James Clarkson, which employs two people;
Kandoo Events, which has organised three runs around the city every year since 2014
Sheffield Woodland Kindergarten, a not-for-profit outdoor nursery for children running for just over a year with seven staff
Stoneface Creative, an outdoor gallery in Storrs Woodland, set up in September and employing two people.
Go Outdoors, the £200m-turnover retailer, was also born in Sheffield.
Sheffield Council deputy leader Leigh Bramall said: “The outdoor industry in Sheffield generates £53m a year, and the sector provides employment for 1597 people.
“Buffalo Systems is a great example of an outdoor business that started in Sheffield and has been successful here because of our unique outdoor lifestyle. It is our proximity between big city life and outdoor adventure that enables Sheffield to attract the talented people that work in this sector and the consumers that drive demand for these products.”