The popular and charismatic man who opened Sheffield’s first commercial Chinese restaurant has died.
Man Gee Wang was a well-known face in the city as owner and manager of The Rickshaw on Devonshire Street, which opened in 1957.
His son, Prof Michael Wang, said: “During the early 60s it was the only place you could get a drink after 10.30pm in the city centre. Consequently, celebrities who performed at City Hall such as Shirley Bassey, Tom Jones and the Rolling Stones would come to the Rickshaw on a Saturday night.”
Man Gee came to Sheffield in the 1930s aged four with his parents and older brother from Sum Gem, Canton Province, China.
His parents ran a Chinese laundry on Ecclesall Road and Man Gee attended Hunters Bar Junior School and then Nether Edge Grammar.
As a young man he trained as a metallurgist at the University of Sheffield and worked for Daniel Doncaster and Sons as a research metallurgist before opening the Rickshaw.
Michael said: “He always believed that once a person had a university education, they could do anything, and he put this into practice in his own working life.”
By the late 1960s, Man Gee was managing three restaurants – in Sheffield, Rotherham and Castleton – along with an espresso coffee bar on Broomhall Street.
The Rickshaw closed in 1975. Afterwards, Man Gee opened a Chinese boutique on Devonshire Street and founded a civil engineering company in Nether Green.
He and his late wife, Pat, were also heavily involved in Scouting throughout their lives, supporting St Augustine’s (Hunters Bar) 59th Troop. Man Gee died peacefully on September 4 aged 87. He leaves three children and ten grandchildren.