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I recently spent quite a bit of time in Sheffield, England, which is where I'm from. I wouldn't move back there, but it's funny when you spend a bit of time in the place where you were brought up. You kind of realize how that place has had quite a big effect on you or made you a certain way.
After studying in Sheffield, I went down to London to do my post-graduate degree at the National Film and Television School, embarking on the movie that would eventually become 'A Grand Day Out.'
I went back over the sketch books I'd filled at Sheffield for ideas and discovered Wallace and Gromit, except Gromit was a cat then. I made them into Plasticene shapes and started 'A Grand Day Out.' It took me longer than I expected.
I'm not posh at all. I grew up in Sheffield but never managed to pick up the accent - which was careless because there'd be some cache now in being a northern playwright, but I missed out on that one.
Our Sheffield and London homes are worth well over a million but the bank owns most of them - we are mortgaged up to the gills.
Being an MP is not a desperately hard life, like going down the pit or working in the steelworks - with which I am all too familiar, having been brought up in the city of Sheffield; and it certainly isn't badly paid compared with any of my constituents.
In Sheffield, we need support from the community and for the community. We need integration with no loss of heritage, and a clear appreciation of what is and is not acceptable.
I had a very ordinary background in Sheffield; I went to a secondary modern, but I saw something on TV in 1968 that inspired me to join an athletics club, and 12 years later, with great coaching and the support of people who loved me a lot, I ended up at an Olympic Games.
Early in 1888 one or two of us got together to establish our own Sheffield Socialist Society.
I live in Sheffield, and most auditions are in London, meaning I'm normally a bag of nerves on the train to London because you have all that time to think.
At heart, this job is about continuing to make great theatre for the people of Sheffield - a city I've known and loved since childhood.
I have never tried to fiddle my role as leader of the city of Sheffield, as an MP or as a minister.
As a shy kid growing up in Sheffield, I fantasized about how it would be great to be famous so I wouldn't actually have to talk to people and feel awkward. And of course, as we all know from fairy stories, when you achieve that ambition, you find out you don't want it.
I never picked up a guitar as a kid, partly because my dad didn't want the noise in our little back-to-back in Sheffield.
When I moved to Sheffield and went to a secondary modern in the Seventies, there were certain challenges: if you've got a name like Sebastian, you either learn to fight or to run.
And my favourite new songwriter is Joe Banfi from Sheffield. He's dark, edgy, serene and beautiful.
Places like the National Theatre or Sheffield, these great engines of theatre, make us cutting edge because they can be experimental. They can do plays that nobody else can afford to do in ways nobody else can afford to do.
I'm not afraid to swing the bat. If they elect to pitch to me, I'm going to swing. I'm not as picky as Mr. Sheffield. I'll swing at something over my head.
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