Review of the Year 2017: July - Castlegate regeneration plans announced and 98-year-old Sheffield transgender woman speaks out

Louise Jennings.  See ROSS PARRY story RPYDUNKIRK.  A 98-year-old hero of Dunkirk has revealed how he later became a WOMAN - one of Britain's oldest transgenders.  Brave Louise Jennings was a 26-year-old when she fought in the Second World War as Robert Jennings.   The then- male soldier collapsed in exhaustion against a massive boulder before having to row out to a British destroyer warship waiting to pick up the troops.  Years later in her 70s she underwent gender transformation surgery to become a woman.  The Christopher Nolan film Dunkirk has brought back memories for the veteran who can still remember the chaos of the beach evacuation in France.
Louise Jennings. See ROSS PARRY story RPYDUNKIRK. A 98-year-old hero of Dunkirk has revealed how he later became a WOMAN - one of Britain's oldest transgenders. Brave Louise Jennings was a 26-year-old when she fought in the Second World War as Robert Jennings. The then- male soldier collapsed in exhaustion against a massive boulder before having to row out to a British destroyer warship waiting to pick up the troops. Years later in her 70s she underwent gender transformation surgery to become a woman. The Christopher Nolan film Dunkirk has brought back memories for the veteran who can still remember the chaos of the beach evacuation in France.
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July kicked off with an announcement from Sheffield Council that it would spend almost £800,000 on a series or projects designed to kickstart the regeneration of rundown Castlegate.

The historic area has been deteriorating since the old Castle Market was knocked down and has long been earmarked for redevelopment. The Council wants to uncover the ruins of Sheffield Castle, while also attracting new businesses and investment. The regeneration will include an archaeological dig, essential repairs to the old Town Hall, bringing empty shops back into use and creating a conservation area over an 18 month period.

How Sheaf Fields, a new park next to the old Castle Market could look. The River Sheaf could be uncovered under new council plans.

How Sheaf Fields, a new park next to the old Castle Market could look. The River Sheaf could be uncovered under new council plans.

Staff at FryMaster, on Attercliffe Road, also had reason to celebrate this month, after it was announced they had won the coveted Star’s Chippy of the Year title.

Owner Richard Pearce said: “I was really pleased when I found out we had won, but the fact we have made it two years on the trot was fantastic. I’m really pleased for all our staff, as they worked really hard to get our name out there.”

Richard, whoe parents and grandparents were also fish fryers, added: “I use a family recipe for the batter which has been passed down to me from my grandma. It’s been in the family for 80 years.

“Customers say they’ve never tasted fish and chips like mine before - even at the coast.”

Richard Pearce of Frymaster who have won Chippy of the Year 2017.

Richard Pearce of Frymaster who have won Chippy of the Year 2017.

And Sheffield resident Louise Jennings spoke out this month, about her experience living as a transgender woman in Sheffield, after undergoing gender reassignment surgery in her 70s. The World War II soldier made the decision in 1989 after the death of his wife Edith.

The 98-year-old, originally from Heeley, said: “I have always regarded woman as superior. I had no hesitation once my mind was made up.”

Richard Pearce of Frymaster who have won Chippy of the Year 2017.

Richard Pearce of Frymaster who have won Chippy of the Year 2017.