Mosborough so proud of its World Cup 'hero' Harry Maguire

High Street, Mosborough.
High Street, Mosborough.
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The sleepy village of Mosborough can't often have been the focus of much media attention.

But that all changed this summer when journalists from around the globe descended on the area to the south east of Sheffield - and it wasn't for the reasons that would initially spring to mind when you see the way the media is portrayed on TV.

Harry Maguire in action for England at the 2018 World Cup. Pic: PA.

Harry Maguire in action for England at the 2018 World Cup. Pic: PA.

There was no violent crime spree or natural disaster, Mosborough united as the whole village watched one of their own put on a shining performance at this summer's World Cup.

Harry Maguire, who grew up in the area, helped England to reach the semi-finals of football's flagship tournament for the first time in 28 years.

And, three weeks after the competition drew to a close, the impact could still be felt in the village.

England flags still don the windows of homes and cars - and having spoken to the people there, that's more than likely intentional.

Chris Thompson, of The Queen, Mosborough. Chris is pictured holding a painting of Harry Maguire, which she hopes to give to him in person.

Chris Thompson, of The Queen, Mosborough. Chris is pictured holding a painting of Harry Maguire, which she hopes to give to him in person.

Lib Dem councillor Gail Smith, who represents Mosborough on Sheffield Council, said: "It was fantastic when the World Cup was on and everyone in Mosborough was supporting Harry."

Leicester City defender Harry was one of Gareth Southgate's star performers and even got himself on the scoresheet in England's 2-0 quarter final victory over Sweden.

And as the whole nation went football crazy, nowhere was as proud as the people where he grew up.

The Queen pub on High Street renamed itself Maguire's for the semi-final against Croatia and even Tony's Fish and Chip shop got into the spirit, offering a 'Harry Maguire Special' on the same day.

A Maguire's banner still proudly sits outside the pub on the traffic light junctions between High Street and Queen Street.

Chris Thompson has ran the pub for the last 25 years and she said the World Cup was one of the highlights of her time behind the bar.

Chris, 62, said: "Everybody came together and what made it extra special was the fact that Harry come in here for a drink and when someone you know is involved, it's amazing.

"I was messaging his mum while they were in Russia and the whole tournament just created such a hype in the pub. We were all chanting 'there's only one Harry Maguire'.

"Harry is our hero. He is a lad that's grown up in the village and to see him have success is phenomenal and to see him on the TV playing for England is amazing. It's such a great achievement and we are full of pride."

On matchdays the whole of the pub, and indeed the village, was transformed. Harry's face donned shop windows and the St George's cross was proudly hung from house and car windows.

Chris said: "During the World Cup we renamed it Maguire's. I contacted my area manager and I said that this was Harry's local, he drinks here and his mum and dad drink here, and I asked what we could do.

"He said to leave it with him and within 24 hours, I'd got a banner and the customers loved it."

Two years ago Harry went to watch Euro 2016 as a fan with a group of friends. That same group – including brother Laurence – travelled around Russia but this time, rather than being in the stands with them, their pal was donning the Three Lions shirt in heart of England's defence.

The Maguire's banner outside the Queen isn't the only item marking Harry's achievements. Artist Matt Cockayne donated a drawing of the former Sheffield United defender to Chris, which she said she hoped to hand to him in person so he can auction it off in aid of charity.

Chris said: "I'm going to give it to him and let him sign it and then auction it off for a charity of his choice. He is such a down-to-earth lad and his friends and family are always in here."

As for Mosborough itself, the former Derbyshire village only became part of Sheffield in 1967.

It sits right on the county border, nestled between Beighton and Eckington and consists of four 'townships' Halfway, Waterthorpe, Westfield as well as Mosborough village.

And its location is something most people living there love. From Mosborough village, in five minutes you can be at Crystal Peaks shopping centre and five minutes in the other direction is the Derbyshire countryside.

In the village, cafés, pubs and shops line High Street, which has a real rural feel to it. People stop and wish each other good morning and the unity and community spirit is almost tangible.

Coun Smith said: "As a village it still has a community feel to it. The pubs are thriving rather than struggling and that tells its own story about the community spirit.

"I love going to talk to people and door knock because everyone is so friendly and I'll be doing that a lot over the summer."

Perhaps the strongest sign of the strength of community comes at The Queen pub.

At a time when pubs are struggling to attract trade and compete with cut-price alcohol in supermarkets, Chris said The Queen was one of the best performing outlets for chain Punch Taverns.

She said: "Mosborough is a very happy village. It's very community orientated and I run this pub as a community pub - that's what The Queen is all about.

"Everybody knows everybody and I am more than just a licensee, I am a friend and a mum. I take massive pride from the fact that The Queen is one of the best performing and it's a wet-led pub - we don't do food.

"Everybody said to me that I'd need to do food to survive but I am a prime example that you don't."

Chris moved to Mosborough from Derbyshire 25 years ago and said she hadn't looked back since.

She added: "When times are down and you need a friend or someone to talk to or a shoulder to rest your head on, the village gives you that.

"Whenever you are down the people of this village lift you and there's not many villages like that anymore."