IT’S nicknamed ‘party street’ thanks to its half mile stretch of clubs, bars and kebab houses.
But locals who live on the infamous Carver Street in Sheffield city centre say the festive stretch turns into a bloodbath come chucking out time.
Gran-of-five Lynne Oakley’s flat overlooks Carver Street and she says she lives ‘in despair’Credit: Glen Minikin
The doorway of a nightclub in Carver Street, where a man was stabbed to deathCredit: Alamy
Earlier this month a man was knifed and a second run over in the early hours.
Since the start of the year there have been five violent incidents reported – four of which were stabbings.
The spate of violence has seen public ‘bleed kits’ installed, and the venues ask that the street be closed to cars to protect their patrons.
Long-suffering residents who live in flats above Sainsbury’s on Carver Street say the constant mayhem makes their lives a misery.
When they’re not tormented by night-time revellers, they say they’re plagued by local druggies fighting over addictive street drug spice.
Gran-of-five Lynne Oakley, 59, has lived in her tiny one-bedroom flat for 11 years and says her mental health has taken a battering from the continual noise.
“I really need to move from here, it is so awful – it’s like somebody having a party in your living room every night,” she tells The Sun.
“There is no getting away from it. I never open my windows and will put on fans at night, even in winter, to try and drown out the music and shouting.
“I used to put the TV on loud but then you get complaints from neighbours.
Residents say it’s carnage every weekend, and the weeknights can be just as bad
We spoke to residents who live in a block of flats above a branch of Sainsbury’s on the streetCredit: Glen Minikin
“If I lived anywhere else and my neighbours were making this noise, I would put in a complaint and they would monitor it and tell them to keep it down, or they would be thrown out.
“Instead we are subjected to this every weekend.
“We’ve asked for double glazing but we’ve been told they can’t afford to fit it. I pay £101 a week rent, and where is that going?
“It’s not right for people to live like this. What we see here is despicable. It’s inhumane.”
Lynne says it starts to get lairy on a Saturday from 2pm and continues throughout the night, culminating in drunks fighting over taxis and outside chicken shops.
It’s not right for people to live like this. What we see here is despicable. It’s inhumane
“You can set your clocks by them on a weekend,” she says. “The sights you see, you couldn’t make it up.
“I have a cat and he won’t do his business in the flat so I have my litter trays downstairs outside. One time somebody did their business in the litter box. It’s disgusting what they do.”
Fighting back tears, Lynne says the growing violence and anti-social behaviour makes her feel like a “prisoner” in her own home.
“You daren’t even go out, and that poor kid got stabbed earlier this month, it’s getting worse,” she says.
“I was once coming home and saw a woman being raped in a doorway. I called the police – at least they did turn up to that one.
The escalating violence has seen ‘bleed kits’ installed on the streetCredit: Glen Minikin
Locals say the road is packed on a weekend night
“One time I saw somebody smashing windows and fighting, and I dialled 999 and was told they would fine me for calling 999.
“Every so often you’ll see a police van drive by but they don’t do anything. People can be fighting and they don’t stop to sort them out.
“There are gangs hanging around here now. I’ve seen a big change in the people coming out here drinking. They’re all doing drugs now. I don’t know how they can all afford to do it.
“Once I saw two ladies laid out in the road snorting cocaine off the floor. It was all in front of the cameras but nobody did anything.
“I wish we could go back into lockdown for it all to shut down. It was so peaceful during Covid.
“I used to be able to watch TV in peace and even fall asleep. Now I have drugs to help me sleep.
I have a cat and he won’t do his business in the flat so I have my litter trays downstairs outside. One time somebody did their business in the litter box. It’s disgusting what they do
“I am in despair. Sometimes I just sit here and cry for hours on end.”
There are five nightclubs on Carver Street – Crystal, Popworld, Viper Rooms, Walkabout and Tropicana – and another, Orb, recently opened on nearby Carver Lane.
The road leading up to it – West Lane – has 24 pubs and revellers often start here and end up on Carver Street, with kicking out time between 3-4am.
Student Freshers Week is typically carnage, with ticket-only club events offering £2 bottles of beer, large vodkas for £2.50 and £1 shots.
Even the local church, St Matthew’s on Carver Street, is getting in on the action with its own beer festival, Oktoberblessed.
Student Hayat Ahmed, 25, regularly films the chaos outside her window and says her friends can’t believe what goes on.
Student Hayat Ahmed often films the carnage that goes on outside her flatCredit: Glen Minikin
Hayat says she’s witnessed people being beaten up and stabbed
She says drunk people ‘can’t resist a traffic cone’
Playing us video clips, she explains: “You can see we have trouble with the drinkers on a night and the junkies in the day, and then every so often we’ll get the odd protest going along – I don’t mind them so much.
“I’ve seen so much fighting – the girls are as bad as the boys, and it’s amazing how drunk people can’t resist a traffic cone.
“I even saw the latest stabbing when that happened, but I didn’t get it on video.”
Hayat says she doesn’t feel safe on the street late at night when there are crowds of drunk people.
“I was once walking home from a night out with a friend and someone came out of nowhere and punched him from behind,” she recalls.
I’ve seen so much fighting – the girls are as bad as the boys, and it’s amazing how drunk people can’t resist a traffic cone
“We called the police but there is only one main street CCTV camera that was pointing in the wrong direction when he was attacked, so nothing happened.
“It’s definitely worse when the football is on. There will be groups of lads dancing and singing and chanting all night if they get a win. If they lose they’re not so noisy.
“I see it all because they come out of the nightclub and congregate at the bottom where the takeaway is, opposite my flat.
“There are different nightclubs running different events from Tuesday to Sunday, so we basically just have Mondays off.
“If I’m getting ready to go out I don’t play my own music because I have the music already on for me. I don’t go to bed early – you can’t.”
A 53-year-old support worker who did not wish to be named admits she goes to stay with friends and relatives every weekend just to get away from the noise.
“I have lived here for 20 years and the problems have got worse,” she tells us.
Carver Street is known by locals as ‘Party Street’Credit: Glen Minikin
Young mum Mina Habibi says she feels trapped inside her own homeCredit: Glen Minikin
“I don’t feel safe here on a night. If I go out I make sure to be back for 10pm so I don’t have to see it.
“I’m not surprised we’ve had another stabbing. But what I am surprised at is the council granting more and more licences – bringing fights and knives along with it.
“They need to put a stop to handing out licences to pubs and clubs here. It needs to be spread across Sheffield rather than all concentrated in one area that is notorious for fights, and now and again a murder.”
Young mum Mina Habibi, 24, who lives in her flat with her one-year-old son Elija, says she too feels trapped inside her own home, and even gets her shopping delivered to avoid having to step outside.
“I don’t feel safe, especially with my baby,” she says.
“There are enough bars around here that you have drunk people around during the day.
“One time a guy was so drunk he fell over the pram. We were only going out to the park.
“He didn’t apologise or anything. He probably didn’t even know he’d done it.
“That has scared me and I try to go out as little as possible.”
Mark Ryan, 65, who owns Ryan Vintage directly opposite Carver Street, says local businesses suffer as a result of the escalating crime.
Local business owner Mark Ryan says his shop suffers when there’s trouble on the streetCredit: Glen Minikin
Whenever there’s a serious incident, the road can be cordoned off for hours – affecting local businesses
“Whenever there is violence, the police come and cordon off the street for a couple of days and people can’t get to the store,” he says.
“I’m one of the only retailers left here, it’s all taken up with bars and clubs, vape shops and off licences.”
He too believes the council is granting liquor licences too easily.
“This is the nightclub spot in Sheffield and the number of nightclubs and bars is increasing,” Mark explains.
“Drinkers will do a pub crawl on West Lane and end here on Carver Street for the clubs, and they’re very drunk by the time they get here.
I don’t feel safe, especially with my baby… One time a guy was so drunk he fell over the pram. We were only going out to the park. He didn’t apologise or anything. He probably didn’t even know he’d done it
“The council are failing us. We don’t get enough value for the rates we are paying, there are not enough police and the streets aren’t cleaned enough. After a weekend here it can really smell of pee and vomit, it’s filthy.
“Instead it wastes money on schemes like a bear exhibition or ULEZ charges.”
But students Kate Maxim and Reece Moss, both 19, say they love the cheap booze on offer on Carver Street and don’t feel scared on nights out.
“I don’t see a lot of trouble here. I’m from Manchester – it’s worse there,” says Kate.
“It’s great that everything is close together – it means you don’t have far to travel and can stay in the one area.
Students Kate Maxim and Reece Moss say they love the cheap booze and that all the clubs are near each otherCredit: Glen Minikin
“It’s a very student-orientated city so there are lots of venues with student prices – on Wednesdays drinks are generally around £2 a go.”
A spokesperson for South Yorkshire Police told The Sun: “We take the safety of our local residents extremely seriously and currently have a number of ongoing initiatives working with local neighbourhood policing teams throughout the city centre.
“Throughout Freshers Week a number of plain clothed officers completed a series of patrols around Carver Street as part of our ongoing Operation Sentinel activity, a dedicated operation which focuses on observing and intervening violent behaviour towards women and girls.
“Officers are specifically looking to safeguard the vulnerable from sexual violence and violent crime through proactive disruptive patrols as well as identifying predatory behaviour by potential perpetrators and prevent further offences.
“In addition, we have extra uniformed officers deployed to Carver Street throughout this weekend (September 22-23) to act as a visible deterrent for those seeking to commit crime, providing support and reassurance for those wishing to enjoy the vibrant night-time economy Sheffield city centre has to offer.
“Our officers will also be joined by our police dogs in bids to clamp down on the issue of drugs and drug supply within the city.
“Officers from our GRIP Programme have recently met with representatives for Carver Street licensed venues to discuss further activity, including installing ID scanners and body worn cameras, coordinating efforts to ensure the safety of venue staff and members of the public.
“The GRIP team continue to conduct hotspot policing patrols which incorporate Carver Street with the aim of reducing most serious violence in the area.
“The GRIP Programme is a Home Office funded project that focuses on delivering activity to reduce most serious violence through deterrence-based targeted hotspot policing and SARA model (Scanning, Analysis, Response and Assessment) problem solving.
“Additional work completed in the area also involves Op Sceptre – an initiative developed to tackle the national concern around knife crime.”
The Sun has reached out to Sheffield City Council for comment.
Councillor Joe Otten, chair of the Waste and Street Scene Committee, said: “The safety of people enjoying the night-time economy is hugely important, which is why the council operates a Best Bar None scheme in partnership with Sheffield BID and South Yorkshire Police.
“For 11 years the Home Office supported accreditation scheme has recognised and encouraged responsible licensing in the city, which includes ensuring that bar, nightclub and other licensable premises operate within the four core licensing objectives.
“More than 40 venues are signed up the scheme in Sheffield city centre. This helps to keep people safe when they are enjoying a night out in Sheffield.”
A spokesperson for The Guinness Partnership said: “We are sorry to hear that our residents at Cambridge Court are experiencing problems with noise from Carver Street.
“The homes currently have double glazing, and we haven’t received any complaints about the noise directly. We will be speaking to residents next week to hear their concerns, but we would also encourage residents to raise the issue of noise nuisance from nearby establishments with the local authority’s environmental health team.”
Some locals blame the council for granting too many liquor licencesCredit: Glen Minikin
Carver Street is home to five nightclubs, with another round the cornerCredit: Glen Minikin