Sheffield is Britain's fifth largest city. The best loved department store in the city centre was "John Lewis"- part of a well-known nationwide chain. The shop sat in a prime position opposite Sheffield City Hall and was much appreciated by Sheffielders and visitors from surrounding districts.
Astonishingly and sadly, in the middle of the pandemic, the John Lewis board decided to shut the shop down as they sought to rationalise their business. Nobody in this city ever anticipated that our beloved John Lewis would be one for the chop. Of course, shutting the store in the middle of the pandemic meant that Sheffielders did not even have an opportunity to mount a campaign to save it.
One late October evening, I happened to be in the city centre and felt shocked and slightly disgusted that the illuminated John Lewis signs on the now empty building were still burning bright. It felt like a kick in the teeth to me. They had crept away in the middle of the night and yet they still had the gall to advertise their brand to passers -by now deprived of their familiar department store. The next day I composed an e-mail to the leader of Sheffield City Council. This is what I wrote:-Dear Mr Fox,