Chapter ends as book finally returned

A gang of Dr Who's in the Winter Gardens
A gang of Dr Who's in the Winter Gardens
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REPORTER Erin Cardiff continues our news review of 2011...

REPORTER Erin Cardiff continues our news review of 2011 into September and October when Sheffield singer Jarvis Cocker returned a library book 30 years late, thousands went spooky on Fright Night at Halloween and the continuing gang battles over drug dealers’ territory in the city claimed more lives.

7.10.11, Page 3

Jarvis Cocker returned a school library book this October - well, it was more than 30 years overdue, think of the fines.

The Pulp front man held an assembly for specially selected pupils at the City School in Stradbroke, telling his captive audience about his time as a pupil there over 30 years ago, as he grew up in nearby Intake.

Jarvis was back at the secondary to help launch his new collection of song lyrics, Mother, Brother, Lover - but he had another book with him.

“I’m bringing back a book I never returned to the school library all those years ago, Nine Modern Poets. I suppose I’ll get rare done,” he said.

The youngsters were treated to an hour-long presentation capturing the excitement of the young performer’s teenage years, including home movies, photos, lyrics and some of Jarvis’ earliest songs.

Long-forgotten efforts, Shakespeare Rock and Life Is A Circle, were unearthed, with a full acoustic version of Pulp’s breakthrough number, Babies.

“It was this school hall that saw the first performance of Pulp in March 1980. The tickets costing 20p promised 30 minutes of live Pulp, which was pretty good value really,” he said.

“It was only when I moved away to London years later that I realised the normal things I’d experienced in Sheffield weren’t actually normal at all - they were interesting and I wanted to write about them because I was scared of forgetting where I’d come from.”

Jarvis said he had taken a slow route to success which took 15 years to bear fruit.

“I suppose you could call it the J Factor rather than the X Factor.

“The J Factor is rather slow, but it can be nice to take the scenic route then get there in the end,” he said.

Head of English Martin Greenough said the visit had been arranged with the help of Michael Jarvis, who had taught Jarvis maths and was still at the school.

“Jarvis said he wanted to come back to school to retrace his steps and see where his book had come from.

“Apart from the assembly he also spent an hour working with some of our music students.

“Not everyone had heard of him, though I’m sure their parents have.

“But his message was that you can be quirky, you can go your own way and the kids loved that,” said Martin.

9.9.11, Page 24/25

Dominic West was another Sheffielder stepping back onto home turf, as he returned to the city in September to appear in Othello at The Crucible.

The actor, who is a former pupil of Broomhill’s Westbourne School, played Iago in the stage adaptation of a Shakespeare classic. Starring alongside his The Wire co-star Clarke Peters, West told The Star that it took little persuading to get him to return to Sheffield.

07.10.11, Page 1/2

October saw the beginning of the trial for the killing of Abdulla Awil Mohammed, one of the victims of a devastating string of deaths linked to turf wars in Sheffield.

Mr Mohammed, aged 18, was hit on the head and killed by a road sign after a car ploughed into a group of youths.

The incident came after weeks of bitter run-ins between Somali and Bengali youths earlier this year. The Kia Picanto was steered onto the pavement, smashing into a street sign. Abdulla, a Sheffield Hallam University civil engineering student from Burngreave, was hit on the head by the sign as it fell, suffering an eight-centimetre gash and was pronounced dead minutes later.

During the trial, Sheffield Crown Court heard the car was driven by 20-year-old Bengali Aminur Rahman, and was carrying 19-year-old Mohammed Kahar and Nizamul Hoque.

Kahar, of Swarcliffe Road, Darnall, and Hoque, of Willow Drive, Darnall, both denied manslaughter.

Rahman, of Jubilee Road, pleaded guilty to manslaughter and was given an eight-year sentence.

Hoque, was handed a 22-month sentence having pleaded guilty to violent disorder and Kahar, was found not guilty of manslaughter.

The court heard that on the day of the tragedy, groups of Somali youths from Burngreave and Pitsmoor travelled to Darnall to seek out a 17-year-old Bengali boy who had been involved in fights going back a month.

David Myerson QC, prosecuting, said clashes escalated and Abdulla became involved later that evening, as trouble was dying down:

“The car was deliberately driven towards that group on the pavement. As they scattered it hit the sign. When they saw what they had done, witnesses heard comments from those in the car that they had ‘got the wrong people’.”

He said there had been fights since February between young Bengalis and Somalis, all aged about 17.

On March 17, a group of Somalis caught the bus to Darnall, sparking a day of running battles.

The Somalis gathered in Nidd Road East, Darnall, where a Bengali family were mourning the death of their elderly grandfather.

They tried to force their way inside, enraging the occupants, who came out wielding mops and brooms. Meanwhile, Abdulla was meeting friends in Gower Street, Pitsmoor. The group heard false rumours that some younger Somalis had been kidnapped in Darnall.

Later that night, the Kia Picanta was driving around Darnall, looking for Somalis after the earlier trouble.

Hoque had sent Kahar a text message saying: “Hurry up, and bring a strap” - slang for gun.

Mr Myerson said Hoque and Kahar knew Rahman was prepared to use his car as an instrument for trouble.

31.10.11, Page 2/3

Sheffield was transformed into a scene from a horror movie this October, as the city welcomed back Fright Night.

Fargate was over-run with zombies, witches – and even a gang of Doctor Whos. Take a look at some of our favourite pictures.