When my wife secured a promotion on Fargate in Sheffield city centre I was naturally pleased for her. However, my opinion soon changed as she described a regular day at work in her new environment.
The journey to work consists of side-stepping drunk vagrants loitering at Devonshire Green while avoiding eye contact with the third person to ask for money this morning.
Further down the road a group of men congregate outside Sainsbury’s near Yates discussing the best begging spots for the day.
A bedraggled dog looks on as my wife walks by resigning itself to another day lying next to his master.
All this before 8am.
So the busy retail day begins. My wife is lucky this morning, there is no one asleep in the doorway.
However, the blood trails outside suggest an eventful night.
The clock strikes 9 and the doors open.
Within the first hour a member of staff is reporting stolen items from the shop.
A shoplifter is later confronted but brazenly asks if he should put the items back, as if this was all part of a big game.
The level of confidence these shoplifters have and the arrogance they display to “shop to order” for the various clientele within the pubs around Sheffield city centre is disgusting.
A long day finishes and my wife takes her regular journey down to Arundel Gate to catch the bus.
She nervously hides herself away from the bus stop knowing that the men and women drinking near the Food Stop could confront her any moment to ask for money.
This time she is lucky, the bus is on time and the drunken crowd seem distracted by some argument.
Here was me thinking the hardest part of her job would be managing rotas or pacifying angry customers.
Come on Sheffield City Council, take some action and make Sheffield a place that we can all be proud of.
At the moment the level of vagrancy/shoplifting is out of hand.
It is not a place I would recommend anyone to work.