Now we all know the Arctic Monkeys and Pulp are from Sheffield and boy do we hear about it! But these bands aren’t the only success stories to come out of the Steel City. Here are 10 of the most famous or influential people to come out of Sheffield, that you may not have known about!
Sir Michael Palin
Sir Michael Palin, 77, is an English actor, comedian and TV presenter. He was a member of the comedy group, Monty Python and has in more recent years, took to documentary work including travel and art programmes.
Richard ‘Dick’ McCourt
One half of comedy duo Dick and Dom was born in Sheffield! Richard McCourt is most famous for his work with CBBC, with his career starting in BBC’s Broom Cupboard in 1996. Before then, McCourt volunteered in Sheffield’s hospital radio station.
Helen Sharman OBE
Helen Sharman OBE was the first British person to go to space as well as the first Western European woman in space. She broke many records in her career but did not return to space after her 7-day mission labelled Project Juno in 1991. Sharman went on later in her career to write a book, and also featured in Channel 4’s soap opera, Hollyoaks!
Lord Sebastian Coe KBE
Lord Coe won 4 Olympic medals back in the ’80s before starting his long career in the Olympics and later politics, representing the Conservative Party in Falmouth and Camborne in 1992. He was a track and field athlete, and although not born in Sheffield, he spent the bulk of his teenage years here. In recent years, Coe has worked in numerous roles in Athletics and Olympics associations.
Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill
Jessica Ennis-Hill is a British former track and field athlete winning gold in the 2012 Olympic Heptathlon. She is one of the nations best athletes and was appointed a DBE in 2017. She has a stand named after her at Bramall Lane, home of Sheffield FC, whom she is a big fan of. After retiring in 2016, she became the first British woman to win the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Lifetime Achievement award.
Gordon Banks OBE
Gordan Banks was a former England FC goalkeeper, who made 679 appearances across his 20-year career, winning 73 caps for England. Banks most famously played in the 1966 World Cup Final, where England went on to win 4-2 in extra time against West Germany. Gordon Banks passed away in 2019, aged 81 but still is one of Englands finest keepers.
Nick Park CBE
Nick Park is an animator, writer and director, best known for being the brains behind Wallace and Gromit. He is a five-time BAFTA award winner, and also responsible for Shaun The Sheep, Chicken Run and many more. Although he wasn’t born in Sheffield, he lived in a surrounding area and graduated from Sheffield Hallam University just a few years before he started his first Wallace and Gromit project.
Joseph William Thornton
Joseph William Thornton was the man responsible for one of our finest Chocolate brands. In 1911, Joseph opened the first-ever Thorntons shop originally called The Chocolate Kabin, in Sheffield. The brand now has over 100 shops and over 2000 employees. The store was best established for their toffee and fudge products.
Joe Cocker OBE
Joe Cocker was a famous English singer, best known for his gritty voice. He got to number one in the UK charts with his cover of ‘With a Little Help From My Friends’ by The Beatles in 1968. Despite the rumours, Joe Cocker is not related to Sheffield-born Jarvis Cocker, who is the lead singer and founder of the band, Pulp.
Robin Hood needs no introduction. We all know of his story in classic English folklore, based in the 13th century. Although Hood is heavily associated with Nottinghamshire, it is said he was actually born in Loxley, Sheffield. It’s strange to think that all the celebrities above may have walked the same streets as Robin Hood.