You left me in the gritty (compared to Walkley) bit of Sheffield, just north-east of the station.
Just for a change, and because my preferred Bing Maps denies the existence of the Durham Ox, you get the Google extract.
I won’t lie, there’s a frisson of excitement as I walk from the Belle Vue back into town along Cricket Inn Lane.
I’ve whizzed just north of here on the A57 out of town dozens of times, wondering what secret Government activities are carried out in the brutalist building beyond the crash barrier.
It’s Castle Court flats. What a let-down. There’s a Premier Stores tucked in there somewhere, possibly selling out-dated Sons of Mars of the Desert DIPA cans for £1.99.
I stop to admire St. Johns, make a mental note the Park Hill flats when I have a bodyguard with me, and head downtown.
Two nervous-looking lads hover on the pavement outside, edgily eyeing my progress. I suspect they’re exchanging Panini World Cup ’82 stickers, and I brazenly stand in front of them and take the killer shot of the Durham Ox. The first official photo since Sheffield Hatter was here in 2011.
Controversial perhaps, but I actually prefer a crumbling, long-closed boozer to one temporarily shut due to Covid or lack of a village stumping up a grand each to turn it into a gastropub.
What Pub DOES recognise the prior existence of the Ye Olde Harrow, which has the sort of font that Matthew Lawrenson would travel across north Preston to view.
You’re a minute from the Quays, five from the station, and next door to the famous Granelli’s.
It’s great urban walking, but my allowed exercise is at an end. I cross the footbridge at Park Square and compare the empty roads around Sheffield with the carnage reported by everyone else on Twitter.
And then, just before I nip in Wilko for those light bulbs I mentioned yesterday, I look up.
Sheffield is just full of unexpected joy, even if I’ve been here a month and STILL haven’t had a pint in a pub.