It's Looking A Bit Bl**k Fr*day Over Bill's Mother's
Not taking advantage of a global marketing ploy at all.
Wiser folk than me have pointed out that hyped up bargains usually aren’t. So the sensible modern way is to buy something that may cost a bit more, but will keep going. (Not something a retailer needs to shift because it’s been in their warehouse all year, so they offer it you at 50% off the price they charged at 3am on October 26th.)
This ‘no thank you’ attitude to stuff you don’t need is a Sheffield tradition, I like to think, as we really don’t like to waste our hard-won earnings. As my uncle liked to say: “A Sheffielder throws their money around like a Scot with no arms.” Sorry Scotland.
I’m no different. So don’t expect 50% off during Black Fr***y fortnight offers here. Instead, I have a few personal suggestions for outdoor folk operating under those buy well, keep going principles, along with quick previews of a few incoming stories.
Below you’ll also find two of my early features from our archive of 115 posts available to all full subscribers, and a small selection from an amazing local photographer who’ll be featured in Sunday’s post. And of course, my thanks for reading, and some reasoning for supporting this increasingly sustainable social enterprise. Ok, yes, I am selling too. Because reading this stuff costs a bit in order to keep going.
We’re over 3/4 of the way to our ‘Yes! I can finally keep writing, researching and photographing stuff for you on a living wage’ target. It costs £3.67 a month for an annual subscription to join our full member’s special publication readership.
l’ll have more on Wyming Brook on Sunday, with a longer feature for full subscribers during the week. I speak to ‘Forest Chump’, now revealed as campaigner Bo Khan, about why he’s keen to build a national campaign to take the Forestry Commission to task about their larch felling programme. And I have a look round part of the post-felling landscape with Roy Mosley of Wyming Brook land managers Sheffield and Rotherham Wildlife Trust. It’s not all apocalyptic, but it is very different.
Also on Sunday all being well will be more thoughts from our new active travel programme director Nicola Marshall about the work to be done to make walking (and cycling, wheeling and running) cures for South Yorkshire’s poor public health and air quality. (And to make us the healthiest region in the country. Yes, that’s the official South Yorkshire plan). And a bit more on Parkwood Springs and Wardsend, the new Country Park for the city.
We also have another set of brilliant wildlife and outdoors photos on Sunday, courtesy of Sheffield Photographic Society member and reader John Scholey, who’s gathered together images from his friend Linda Jackson who died in October. Linda was a Sheffield junior school teacher and award-winning photographer, and her live and digitally-enhanced photos were featured in the society’s recent exhibition.
This week we’ve had loads of new subscribers. Hello there everyone. We’ve been going just over a year now, and we’re now at 155 full subscribers - only another 45 needed in order to make this publication a sustainable social enterprise (more on this below).
I’ve opened up a couple of early posts for you newcomers, which I hope you’ll find interesting. The full archive, along with our Round at Bill’s Mother’s relaxed rolling news service and comprehensive What’s On Out There listings, and occasional longer features, are all available to full members at the meagre cost of £3.67 a month for an annual subscription. Our first archive post is a still timely piece about why badger culling is a very bad idea.
Can an online newspaper with one employee (so far) be a social enterprise? I think it can, with your help. In my experience, there are many definitions of a social enterprise, none of which exclude It’s Looking A Bit Black Over Bill’s Mother’s:
Working for the good of locals and nature and biodiversity and public health and the outdoors and all that ✅
Business aims as above rather than to ratchet up the profits ✅
Paying employees a living wage or above - not yet, but see that button below…..❓
Once I get to just over 200 full subscribers I’ll have three ticks above. And beyond that, it gets much more interesting: more time to chase people, local artists, more longer features, freelances, tee shirts, who knows?
Thanks for reading. There’s the button, below another temporarily free feature from the early archive. This one’s about mud.
Here’s the button. £4 a month, or pay annually and get a month free. You’ll be asked for two factor authentication for security, and you can cancel any time. Thanks.
And finally, what I hope will become a growing list of outdoor-related local shops and services following that Sheffield principle of buy well, keep going out. These are just the first few I know about.
If you’re not included, sorry, but tell me about yourselves and why you suit sensible Sheffielders. Here I am: firstname.lastname@example.org
A Different Gear - reliable bikes and bike kit
Alpkit - repairable outdoor gear
Buffalo - outdoor clothing
Cotic - handmade off roaders with spare parts service
Russell’s Bicycle Shed - keep going bike servicing
Scavenger - recycled accessories
Tony Butterworth’s Cycles - North West Sheffield’s local bike shop
Wild Moose - outdoor swimming