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Sheffield mobile application goes live

From left: Marc Turley, East Midlands Trains; Cllr Paul Scriven, Sheffield City Council; Brendan Moffett, Creativesheffield; John Pickering, Irwin Mitchell; Darren Pearce, Meadowhall; Tim Pryor, Lloyds TSB.

Launching today, Sheffield is set to become one of the first UK cities to have a mobile application designed for city promotion. Available for download from today, it’s compatible with both iPhone and Android systems.

This news comes hot on the heels of the launch of Sheffield’s new brand strategy and visual identity, which aims to take a more coherent and coordinated approach to marketing the city to three key audiences of Talent, Trade and Tourism.

Brendan Moffett, Director of Strategic Marketing at Creativesheffield who commissioned the application, says: “The launch of this application comes following consistent requests from the city’s business community to be armed with more materials, both printed and digital, in order to sell the city externally to clients, customers, colleagues, potential investors, visitors and acquaintances.

“Wherever you are in the world, Toronto, Tokyo or Tinsley, we want you to be able to show the people you meet how brilliant Sheffield is – simply at the touch of a button.”

The application currently has four key features: Business, an ideal way to communicate to potential investors and external organisations what makes Sheffield an attractive place to do business; Culture, a great snapshot of Sheffield’s vibrant arts, sports and entertainment scene; Photos, providing a look at modern Sheffield; and a link to join Sheffield’s LinkedIN group, allowing people and businesses to make important contacts within the city.

Councillor Paul Scriven, Leader of Sheffield City Council, comments: “It is fantastic to see Sheffield at the cutting edge of using new media to sell the city. I’m always talking Sheffield up when I meet people from around the UK and the rest of the world. So it’s great news that I can finally do Sheffield justice when explaining about our wonderful city by using the features included on the app.”

This work has received private sector support from Irwin Mitchell, Lloyds TSB, Meadowhall and East Midlands Trains.

John Pickering, National Managing Partner at Irwin Mitchell, adds: “This application will be particularly useful for organisations and individuals who are regularly asked about Sheffield’s USPs at meetings and conferences outside of the city. Being able to show people on my mobile phone will create a fantastic impression of the city and make my job a lot easier when explaining why Sheffield is a great place to live, work and do business.”

Councillor Scriven concludes: “I urge everyone to download this free tool and show it to their friends, family and business contacts so that we can all become ambassadors for this great city of ours.”

The application was designed by Iris Associates and is only the first step towards developing the city’s cross-platform communications into 2011.

It’s not Hollywood, but we’ve got the hills

To coin the words of the bard, if the world can indeed be considered to be a stage then I can make a great case for saying the city I’ve made my home, Sheffield, makes one pretty impressive urban film set.

The fact that it’s a town built on seven hills does much to account for Sheffield’s cinematic quality. The great sweeping views to be seen from the height of many a random corner commonly contain not simply rows of terraced houses, but there’s often startling  surprises too; patches of green merging with industrial enclaves, thrusting modern towers of glass mingling in the same camera frame as distant, misty ridges of the Peak District.

Last week, I got to pondering about this twice. First when I came across an interesting blog post about Sheffield’s film heritage with detailed references to the locations featured in the much talked-about, new celluloid journey into dark comedy, by satirist Chris Morris, ‘Four Lions’ – much of which was filmed here in the Steel City by Sheffield’s influential film-making powerhouse Warp Films  http://warp.net/films

Here’s this post: http://burntretina.wordpress.com/2010/05/07/finding-four-lions-in-sheffield/<>

Still musing about this, I then went to a one-off Q & A Screening of ‘Four Lions,’ at our fabulous independent cinema, Showroom (http://www.showroomworkstation.org.uk/)with producer Mark Herbert. When Mark was asked why the film was mostly shot in Sheffield, he said:

‘Even though I live and work in Sheffield, it’s the first time Warp Films have actually shot here. Filming in London is a nightmare and we just felt it was right to shoot most of ‘Four Lions’ where we lived, but we were conscious of the fact that it’s not about Sheffield as a place – it represents how we’re happy to be living and working here but we deliberately wanted the location to have a universal feel, as we always work outwards.’

Depicted this way Sheffield translates into a uniform British multicultural ‘Everytown’. That said, for those who know (and love) the city well, you’ll certainly be kept busy ticking off the familiar landmark buildings and urban hangouts. And watch out, local shopping fans, for one particular domed Mecca!

There might not always be lights and cameras – but the seven hills of Sheffield are never short on action.

And that, dear readers, is a wrap – for this week at least!