English and Maths – The Most Important Skills You Can Own

We can all agree that English and maths skills are some of the most important that you can have, if not the most important.

These are the skills that play really important roles in your everyday life; getting a job, a pay rise, a promotion. Making sure they’re the best they can be can have a huge effect on your quality of life, making a difference in being able to communicate better with friends, family and colleagues, problem solving and earning a bit more money.

But unfortunately these are the very skills that employers are concerned about. The standard has been getting worse which has made them realise just how important they are.

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Studies show that 46% of employers are more concerned about employees English skills in the work place than maths, 26% of employers are concerned about them both equally, 17% are more concerned about maths and only 11% said they had no concerns. Pretty concerning.

Employers are choosing not to hire because of this. A lack of qualifications in English and maths will see you struggle to get a job, a promotion or a pay rise with 25% of adults with no GCSEs of grade C or equivalent still looking for paid work. You could be missing out.

But it’s not about knowing Pythagoras and algebra inside out, nor is it about being a walking dictionary. It’s about being able to apply those skills to the job, about being able to communicate in a respected way and solving problems. When you think about it, they are essentially life skills.

Businesses are looking for people to show to them that they can apply English to communications at work:

  • Sending emails
  • Speaking to new customers
  • Report writing
  • Proofreading

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And use maths for:

  • Data analysis
  • Calculations
  • Problem Solving
  • Budgeting

It increases your pay and puts you in the position for promotion. With their such a gap and such a need, never has there been a better time to improve your English and maths skills to help you progress at work.

But it’s not all about employers. It’s about you. Improving the quality of your career, pay and, ultimately, your life through daily interactions.

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Here’s a little overview of how:

Par rises

As a general rule, the more qualified you are, the more money you are likely to earn through your career. Sounds simple enough, right? The figures tend to agree. If you don’t have your GCSEs there’s likely to be a 7% pay gap with those that do equating to over £2,000 extra in your bank a year. Improving your qualifications will also improve your finances!


63% of men and 75% of women with very low English skills have never received a promotion. If you can’t properly fill out an application form, how can you ever apply for a promotion; let alone impress on a daily basis.

Everyday Life

From getting to grips with discounts offered in shop, calculating your earnings so that you’re not paying too much tax right through to reading bus timetables and keeping yourself healthy, a higher level of English and maths skills will improve your quality of life.

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Applying for university

As mentioned above, you’re probably going to earn more if you’re qualified to a higher level. Universities require a minimum of a GCSE grade C in English and maths (grade 4/5 on the new system) to just get on to a course. It’s all worth it, though!

Helping with homework

Some of you may have homework and may dread your youngster asking for help with homework, be it English or maths. You’re not alone though. The top 5 out of 10 of the worst subjects parents struggle to help their children with are all maths related. Data shows children in the top 15% in maths ability at the age of 10 earn more, so your help could be crucial.

If you would like to improve you English and maths skills, we would love to help! Come down to our Enrolment Day on 24th August to sign up for a course. For more details, please click here. 


How Much Could An NUS Extra Card Save You At University?

During your time as a student, you’re probably not going to have as much money as you’d like – but then, when do we ever? Things are going to be tight. There’ll always be a couple of quid kicking about for a pint, mind you, but the luxury of eating out and frivolous clothes purchases will have to fall by the wayside.

It’s time to make the discounts count. Discounts are aplenty when you’re a student and not just the standard 10% off at Topshop or free cheeseburger from McDonald’s at the end of a night out. We’re talking a wealth of discounts that come with an NUS Extra card.

What is an NUS Extra card?

An NUS Extra card is the bridge between student life and your social life. A way of living an affordable student life without having to scrimp on the finer things in life. Produced by the NUS (National Union of Students), who have over 7 million members, the card represents the reality of student living. The reality being, why don’t you deserve nice things?!

For £12 a year or £32 for 3, you can use the card online or in shops with 200+ discounts nationally and 42,000+ internationally.

You can view all the discounts here: https://www.nus.org.uk/en/nus-extra/discounts/

Top 6 NUS Extra Discounts

That’s a lot of discounts, at home and abroad. A lot to sift through, to find your vices. So, being helpful and what have you, here are our top 6:

  • Up to 50% off at 5000 restaurants with Gourmet Society Bolt on

For just £3.99 you’re opening up a world of 50% off, 2-for-1 meals or 25% off your total bill. You can use your card at any of the associated restaurants, be it your favourite chain, independent café or pub, and use it as often as you like.

  • 50% off NOW TV Sky Entertainment/Cinema month pass


If you’re feeling the pinch, we’d recommend getting stuck into some serious tele. The £4.99 Cinema Pass gives you access to over 1,000 movies, including new premiere every day, whilst the £3.59 Entertainment pass for the month gives you 11 additional channels (including Sky Atlantic) and over 250 box sets. Remember to cancel at the end of the month though!

  • 50% of Spotify Premium for up to 12 months


What’s not to love? Cheap subscription for the best music streaming service. Everyone’s a winner.

  • 12% off 16-25 railcard

No doubt you’ll be back and forth whilst at university with trains paramount to getting from A to B. A saving on a card which makes you a saving makes all the sense. Right?

  • 10% off at the Co-op

Fans of yellow reduced tickets, get on this. By showing your NUS Extra card at the till you can get 10% discount off your shop. Whether that’s the big shop, the nipping in for a few bits shop or stocking up on beer shop, reduced items are at your beck and call!

  • 10% off ASOS


You probably use ASOS to absolute death already, so why wouldn’t you want a 10% discount on everything, all of the time?

Make sure you use it!

It’s time to get over the snobbery of asking for discounts. These specific discounts are here to help you live your life as a student, in reality. You’ve paid for the card, the NUS have sorted the discounts, just use it!

Always worth an ask

Some places choose not to advertise their discounts, whether that’s online or offline. It is always worth asking. Always. You’re entitled to these discounts so why pay more?

Don’t forget to sort your Amazon Prime

Ok, so to activate this one it just requires your email address we provided you with upon enrolment for a 6 month free trial. Same day delivery, Prime Video and even access to Amazon’s Pantry, just forget to cancel after 6 months, don’t get too addicted to the ease!

To buy your NUS Card please click here or speak to your Students’ Union when you start your time at the college. It’s definitely worth it!


Top 10 Student Eats In Sheffield

Studying for a degree isn’t about continuous study. You’re going to need to take some time for yourself. Get out into the city and hit up some of the finest independent eateries in town. Recuperate, rest and replenish. Sheffield’s a top place to do just that with cuisine clusters dotted all over, from Mexico to New Zealand via a pit-stop in Vietnam.

The list is interchangeable, depending on what you facny, but there to be completed!

The Street Food Chef

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Sheffield’s original Mexican cantina. Fast food done healthy, The Street Food Chef is archetypically Mexican to its core yet retains that Sheffield independent magic we so love. Burritos, tacos and quesadillas, your choice of salsa and a El Bastardo Man vs Food challenge; a Sheffield favourite.

Twisted Burger Company

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The edgiest burger joint in town, Twisted Burger Company has been serving out of the eclectic Harley for years. The burgers push boundaries, the fries are adventurous (get on the jalapeno business fries) and there are always plenty of vegan specials. A new restaurant has just opened up in Broomhill but you can grab a feed at The Harley until 1am for when you’ve been trapped in the library putting the hours in!

Bungalows and Bears

Let’s start with the chicken. Oh, the chicken. The chicken is to die for. Succulent and gravy coated. Fried, winged or spatchcocked. So, so good. The rest of the menu is in equal measure. Comprised of some mighty fine, yet oh so simple burgers, wild sides and shakes. Tuesday’s are 2-4-1, every Tuesday. Worth it.

The Great Gatsby

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Doing alright with the Mexican delicacies, here; Shy Boy Cantina resides in The Great Gatsby on Division Street. But it’s not just another Mexican. Shy Boy has fused pan-Asian and Mexican to delicious effect. Kimchi and katsu are prevalent throughout the menu in tacos and topped fries. Laid back food befitting of its environment ideal for lining the stomach .

Blue Moon Café

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For all you veggies and vegans out there, Blue Moon Café is probably going to become a regular acquaintance of yours. With the vibe of a Mediterranean-fused tea room in the backdrop of the cathedral, Blue Moon change their menu daily. Expect soups, quiche, homity pies and a fresh salad bar with cake if you can manage it. It’s all homemade and feels quite artsy. Worth a visit even if you’re of the carnivorous persuasion.


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If you’ve never been to Tamper for coffee, or breakfast, then you’ll definitely know somebody who will tell you that your foolish for not doing so. Working to a cool New Zealand cafe culture, the coffee takes presidency but the kiwi-inspired brunch menu (especially the Eggs Benedict and Mince on Toast) is reason alone to pay it a visit.

Saigon 68

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When plumping for a far-Eastern takeaway, most hit up their favourite Chinese. This little Vietnamese cafe will break you from the mould. The food is traditional, plentiful and, for the quality, pretty damn cheap. Eat in or takeaway, we think you just might fall in love with this place.

Picture House Social

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There can’t be a ‘top eats’ list that doesn’t contain some sort of pizza. Everyone loves pizza but everyone loves pizza and beer that little bit more. Throw in a couple of table tennis tables and Italian street-food nibbles alongside traditional Neapolitan-style bases, and Picture House Social have absolutely got this down.

Lucky Fox

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Thankfully for all, Lucky Fox are getting a new restaurant. Another restaurant on Ecclesall Road to handle the demand for some of the finest fried chicken and waffles this side of the pond. The restaurant itself has the very essence of an American food bar serving up craft beer and the food has that hint of homemade mother’s cooking to it.

Two Steps

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Here’s to Sheffield’s finest chip shop. A good chippy is the linchpin of every city, town and village, and Sheffield is no different. Located on Sharrow Vale Road, there’s no thrills to Two Steps and nothing you wouldn’t expect from a chippy, except from the fact they do it better than the majority. Just ask the queues down the road, they’ll tell you!

Want to know a bit more about what makes Sheffield great? Take a look here! http://www.sheffcol.ac.uk/college-life/sheffield-the-city

6 stars with brilliantly unexpected hobbies

If you look up the definition of ‘hobby’ you’ll get an activity that is done regularly in one’s leisure time for pleasure. Pleasure being the operative. Something you enjoy; an aside from the stresses and tribulations of working.

This stretches to all. Everyone needs a little downtime. A bit of time for yourself, doing something you really enjoy. Adele, a woman of many talents, recently announced a “new secret hobby” at one of her epic Wembley Stadium gigs. It turns out that the star has been making pom poms – and what’s more, her fluffy accessories are so successful that she’s been selling them on Etsy.

The vision of superstar Adele getting crafty of an evening got the BBC thinking about what other unexpected but awesome pastimes celebrities might be keeping on the down low. Check out these celebrity hobbies who might just inspire you to take up one of our hobby courses!

1. Katy Perry and crochet


Turns out Katy Perry isn’t just “chained to the rhythm,” but she’s totally “hooked” (get it?) on crochet, too.

“I do a bit of crocheting now; I know, I’m the biggest nana on the block,” she revealed, in a 2013 episode of Alan Carr’s Chatty Man.

“I was at Liberty yesterday and they have this big crocheting aisle – everyone else that’s cool was in the designer clothes area and I was just like ‘ooh look at all these yarns, I love it’. I thought maybe it’d be better for my subconscious and my dreaming just to like, do a bit of crocheting before I go to bed.”


I know, I'm so scandalous.

A post shared by KATY PERRY (@katyperry) on

2. Rita Ora and fishing

Call us prejudiced, but when someone says “fishing” we tend to think, less “glamorous pop star” and more…worms and waders. (Those last ones are like giant waterproof dungarees attached to your wellies…kind of amazing really.)

Nevertheless, people have long raved about the meditative magic of a good day’s fishing, and it turns out that Rita Ora is a fan, too.

“‘I fish. It’s a random thing for me to do but I like it,’ she told BBC Breakfast recently. “I mean you just sit there and wait for the fish to take the bait. I just wait and see what happens.”

3. Miley Cyrus and crafting


My insides cummin out

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A few years ago, Miley Cyrus starting revealing she was doing a bit of crafting. And when we say “a bit of crafting,” we mean she seemed to float happily in a technicolour felt, loom band, gem stone and glue gun populated universe for a good long while.

We loved looking at her ravey rainbow creations on social media, and we’re hoping we might just have the right amount of imagination to create the kind of wild and wonderful things she came up with ourselves.

4. Lorde and inorganics

While we were initially left a little flummoxed by Lorde’s secret hobby, we’re now SO here for it.

“I’m boring because my favourite thing to do is trawl the inorganics,” she told the Telegraph back in 2014. Um…sounds impressive. But what does it actually mean? Turns out, she’s talking going through inorganic waste bins…

“It stays on the street for a few days and then it’s collected and put into a landfill somewhere. But people drive around and go through other people’s household rubbish. And honestly, I’ve gotten amazing furniture, shoes, hats, jackets. I did this three weeks ago! Recognised every single time … so embarrassing.”

Environmentally friendly? Check. Ahead of the curve? Check. We’d say Lorde’s fav pastime is most definitely NOT rubbish. Although obviously, we’re not suggesting you spent your weekend stealing things from your neighbours’ dustbins..’

5. Justin Bieber and Rubik’s Cubes

From ice hockey to football to skate boarding, Justin Bieber has a lot of talents and hobbies. But the Canadian star has shown in various interviews that he’s more than just a good singer with great hair – he’s a bit of a secret, Rubiks Cube solving genius.

We can fiddle with the classic “toy” (more like frustration device) for hours without really getting anywhere, but during his Carpool Kareoke segment with James Corden the Biebs solved one in under two minutes flat. Phew!

6. Taylor Swift and snowglobes

Now we all know that Taylor Swift is a thoughtful pal to those in her squad, and that she loves the homier things in life. Her social media feeds are full of home baked items and, well, her cats.

But it turns out that Ms Swift has a peculiar penchant for making cute, glittery snowglobes, and even crafted a big load of them as Christmas presents for all her friends. We hope we find one in our stocking this year…


At The Sheffield College we want to help you turn your hobby into a career, providing you with the support and business skills to help you develop your products and sell them – just as Adele is doing!

Find out more about what courses we can offer you here.

For the first time ever, a video game trailer has qualified for an Oscar

As gameplay aligns closer to film than ever before, a video game trailer has qualified for an Oscar for the first time ever. It’s absolutely huge, this. The category? Animation. But how long until gameplay has an Oscar category of its own? Mashable explain further…

Honestly, for me the flip-flopping bears would’ve qualified it for an Oscar alone — but this qualification is a lot more legitimate than just my feelings for animated bears.

Of course, Everything and its 10-minute gameplay trailer (up top) won’t win a Best Picture Academy Award (aside from any kind of La La Land, Golden Globes mix-up joke someone feels inclined to make). It does, however, stand to compete for one in the animated short film category, thanks to its recent win of the jury prize for animation at the Vienna Shorts Festival.

Here’s the jury’s statement on the trailer:

The “Jury Prize – Animation” goes to a film, which beyond being entertaining has a strong poetic and philosophical theme. It serves a highly educational purpose, including an important political statement, that encourages us to let our egos dissolve and gain a new perspective on the world. The award goes to “Everything,” by David OReilly.

Winning a festival prize is just one of many ways a short film can qualify for Oscar consideration — which simply means it’s eligible for nomination.

O’Reilly, a California-based filmmaker from Ireland, captured simple gameplay footage from Everything, then overlaid it with the voice of Alan Watts — late British philosopher, writer and speaker known for interpreting Eastern philosophy — to create a piece of existential art that not only expands your mind, but is also expanding the tradition of what qualifies for an Academy Award.

This expansion is another micro-erosion of the shorts dominance of Walt Disney, which has historically cleaned up the animated short film category. Now, if Everything gets nominated, we just have to hope a member of the voting committee is a fan of video games.

Everything is a game where you can play as literally everything. Flip-flop around the environment as a bear, or zoom in deep to squish around as a microorganism. It released on March 21 on PS4 and April 21 on PC and Mac.

Interesting, that. What is also interesting is the fact that you can study Games Design and Development right here at The Sheffield College. Bet you didn’t know that! To find out more, please click here! 

There’s Still Time To Apply For Student Finance!

There’s always something that should happen in an ‘ideal world’ yet for one reason or another just doesn’t quite happen. In an ideal world you would have completed and sent in your application for Student Finance by now but it’s not the end of the world if not. Far from it.

Many people apply after the deadline each year and get sorted but here’s a few things you should know.

What happens if I still need to apply?

As normal, you will apply for student finance with the Student Loans Company calculating how much you can borrow based on your household income. Your parent(s) or partner will be asked to provide them with a breakdown of their income which can obviously take a little time to process.

If you’ve left it really late and apply less than four weeks before the course starts, the Student Loans Company will make sure you have money for the start of your course by initially working out how much you can have without calculating your household income until they receive that information. All good.

How will this affect me financially?

If you apply less than four weeks before your course starts or the household income process hasn’t been completed yet you’ll probably find your loan amount is a little less than you thought. As soon as the evidence has been processed, your loan will be updated and you’ll be backdated the money you’re owed.

What do the loans cover?

The majority of students will need to cover tuition fees and the cost of living whilst studying. You can apply for both of those.

Tuition Fees cover the yearly fee we charge to study our course. It’ll come straight to us, so don’t worry about that one – it won’t be affected by a late application either.

Your living costs, or maintenance loan, will be affected by late application as explained above. It’ll be paid directly to you in three instalments throughout the year and is yours to spend (but pay back in the end!).

Living with parents



Up to £7,097
Studying outside London and not living with parents Up to £8,430
Living and studying abroad for at least one academic term Up to £9,654

Do I need to reapply each year?

You do, if you want that loan! You just need to fill out a quick form and then you’re away – but we’ll help with that closer the time.

How do I apply then?

Time is of the essence so we’ll keep this as simple as possible:

  1. Register an account by clicking here.
  2. Complete and submit your application
  • To save time, having these documents/details on you will speed up your application.
    • Your valid UK passport, if you have one;
    • Your university and course details;
    • Your bank account details;
    • Your National Insurance number.
  1. Send the evidence in
  2. Print, sign and return the declaration form – if you don’t, you’ll not get paid!

If you would like to access support with your Student Finance application, please give us a ring on 0114 260 2600 and ask to speak to Student Support. Alternatively, you can contact our Student Support Team by clicking here


Need Accommodation In Sheffield? These are Sheffield’s Top 5 Student Halls!

For many, a huge part of the experience of going to university is moving away from home. Away from home and into student halls. The opportunity to live independently, to meet new people. It’s a fantastic experience, though not for everyone, with different halls catering to different needs.

Sheffield has a huge range of student accommodation with many located centrally and close to tram and bus links between The Sheffield College’s campuses. So as not to completely over-face you, here are our top 5!

Truro Works

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A five minute walk from us here at our City Campus, the tram stop to get to our Hillsborough Campus and the train station, Truro Works is a former cutlery factory comprised of a series of furnished study rooms, bedsits and self-contained flats. Large communal areas and regular social events in the common room provide a community atmosphere.

The city centre is also just five minutes the other way with a pub, gym and supermarket all on your doorstep.

Click here for more…

The Forge

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Best known as the one with the Jarvis Cocker poem on the side, The Forge is home to over 1000 students in a series of flats for between three and six people (each with en-suite). Just off London Road, close to the ever popular Ecclesall Road and still just 10 minutes from the city centre, a multitude of bars, restaurants and supermarkets are all within walking distance.

As with anywhere of its size and large social spaces (with gym, pool table, table tennis), The Forge is geared more towards the outgoing and sociable.

Click here for more…

The Anvil

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The Anvil, in contrast, is one of Sheffield’s quieter student halls. Located in the forefront of our City Campus and, again, just a five minute walk to the tram stop to get to our Hillsborough Campus, you get to enjoy the rush of the city in a more tranquil location – perfect for studying!

160 beds, in flat sizes of three, five and six bedrooms sit in the shadow of Bramall Lane, home to Sheffield United, each of which has an en-suite and shared kitchen. However, if you prefer, there are also 22 studios available.

Click here for more...

The Trigon

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Right opposite one of Sheffield’s up-and-coming breweries, The Trigon is a modern mix of purpose-built flats of three to six bedrooms. As with the above, each room comes with en-suite and a shared kitchen.

Just round the corner from Truro Works, The Trigon is also within a stone’s throw of our City Campus and transport links to Hillsborough Campus, as well as being serviced by a live music pub, The Leadmill, supermarkets and a gym.

Click here for more…

Laycock Studios

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If you thought the others were close to us, the brand new Laycock Studios could be the closest of the lot. Less than a minute from the train station and tram stop to our Hillsborough Campus, and just a bit further walking to our City Campus, the new luxury studios have been decked out with a stylish interior and an on-site gym and quiet study room to keep you busy.

These have literally just been built and the price is per room, not per person sharing – worth bearing in mind!

Click here for more…

For more information about student accommodation whilst studying at The Sheffield College, please click here.

8 Cooking Tips From Professional Chefs

Professional cookery looks hard. It just does. And what’s worse, they make it look so easy. So, so easy.

The thing is, though, once you follow the tips of the top chefs, it genuinely makes everything a lot easier. So, with that in mind, here’s 8 top tips from professional chefs to make it a little easier!

Get things in order

The veggies in your sauces and stuff- cook that first. Do not add raw onions to already simmering tomato sauce and expect it to taste good. Also, huge amounts of random spices make food taste bad. Learn what they are and where to use them.

Preparation is key

Read the whole recipe before you touch anything including the directions. Then get all the ingredients together and measured before anything touches heat. Chop vegetables slice meat mix spices. Cooking is so much easier when you do the prep first and then just worry about what’s in the pan when the heat is on. What do you think the kitchen does all afternoon between lunch and dinner service, get things together so the actual cooking is way faster and easier.

Get the herbs right

The veggies in your sauces and stuff- cook that first. Do not add raw onions to already simmering tomato sauce and expect it to taste good. Also, huge amounts of random spices make food taste bad. Learn what they are and where to use them.


Rosemary and thyme go perfect together. Always.

Chop properly

Keep your fingertips behind your knuckles, your knife in front of your knuckles, and keep your blade on the cutting board. Your fingers will thank you.


Know the worth of your salt

My brother is a chef at a Michelin 2-Star and says things would be so much better is people added salt during the cooking process and not at the very beginning or at the very end.

And finally, relax and enjoy

Don’t be afraid to experiment and adjust recipes to your liking. Taste things as you go to adjust seasoning, salt, sugar, and acidity levels. Don’t just be a robot following a recipe. Food is an art.

Although, failing that, get yourself enrolled on one of our Catering courses here at The Sheffield College and be tutored by our Master Chefs of Great Britain. Click here for more..


10 extraordinary things that also happened on the day Sgt. Pepper was released

That day was 50 years ago today. June 1st 1967. 50 years. Half a century has passed since The Beatles released one of the most influential albums of all time, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

It was conceptual, ahead of the curve. It blended psychedelic shoegaze with classical Indian instruments. A feeling feeling of the surreal, but a surreal notion which you wanted to be part of. Upbeat and inviting.

But 50 years. 50 years and still so influential. BBC Music have taken a look into what else happened that day our ears were turned on.

1. Dee Time on BBC One

TV was very different in 1967. There were only three channels, most television sets were black and white, and programming was not 24 hours a day. But some things remain constant, like a nice chat show in the vein of Graham Norton or Jonathan Ross. Simon Dee was the host of Dee Time, and in the early evening of 1 June, he played the gracious host to the British comic actress Thora Hird, singer Julie Rogers, film composer Bernard Herrmann and American comic actor Stubby Kaye.

Musical support came from the Northern Dance Orchestra and The Frugal Sound – a folk group with an astonishingly 60s name, who’d released a cover of The Beatles’ Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown) a year earlier.

2. McDonald’s opened their first international restaurant

Although perhaps not as significant an event then as it appears now, the first McDonald’s restaurant franchise to open outside of the United States started serving in Richmond, British Columbia, right in the middle of the Summer of Love, on 1 June 1967. The burger chain would not reach the UK until 1974.

3. David Bowie released his first album

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There were already some fairly way-out albums in the shops when Sgt. Pepper was released. Country Joe and the Fish had released Electric Music for the Mind and Body on 11 May, The Mothers of Invention had released Absolutely Free on 26 May. The Ventures even had an album out called Super Psychedelics, while Paul Beaver put out a musical interpretation of astrology called The Zodiac: Cosmic Sounds.

By contrast, David Bowie‘s self-titled first album, released on 1 June, was a rum collection of London-centric whimsy, pitched somewhere between Lionel Bart and Anthony Newley, from a man still finding his feet artistically. It’s interesting to note, with the release of Elvis Presley‘s album of songs from the movie Double Trouble, that 1 June 1967 is the only date on which the defining artists of the 50s, 60s and 70s all released original albums at the same time.

4. The Kinks on Top of the Pops

In the week that The Beatles unveiled their masterwork, the No.1 single was the beatific Silence Is Golden by The Tremeloes, soon to be replaced by the even more beatific Whiter Shade of Pale by Procol Harum. For that week’s Top of the Pops – broadcast half an hour after Dee Time had finished – presenter Pete Murray introduced previously taped performances by The Tremeloes, The Hollies, Vince Hill, Engelbert Humperdinck and the New Vaudeville Band, and new footage of The Small Faces and P.P. Arnold. Best of all was a new performance of Waterloo Sunset (also quite beatific) by The Kinks who were sitting pretty at No.2.

Oh, and there was a dance routine from The Gojos – to Arthur Conley‘s Sweet Soul Music at No.13 – possibly depriving the world of the sight of some energetic rug-cutting to the hot No.10 sounds of Seven Drunken Nights by The Dubliners.

5. The Mersey Sound arrived

While The Beatles were celebrating their new album, another Liverpool artistic high watermark was being reached. Penguin Books published a poetry collection called The Mersey Sound on 25 May, which brought the same youthful irreverence to fusty old verse that rock and pop music had brought to society at large. It featured the work of three poets from Liverpool – Adrian Henri, Roger McGough and Brian Patten. Funny and touching writers all, their verses were informed by modern life and were deliberately accessible, which made them hugely popular. The Mersey Sound went on to become one of the biggest-selling poetry anthologies in the world, selling over 500,000 copies.

6. Double 007

Movie-goers on 1 June 1967 were caught mid-way between two James Bond movies released that year. Casino Royale, which came out in April, was a spoof loosely based on Ian Fleming’s first Bond novel, with David Niven playing the part of James Bond 007, supported comically by Peter Sellers, Ursula Andress (who had already appeared in Dr. No), Woody Allen and Orson Welles. The film’s score was by Burt Bacharach, which makes the whole thing Austin Powers before Austin Powers was Austin Powers.

But on 12 June, You Only Live Twice was released, Bond’s fifth proper cinematic outing, and Sean Connery’s last in the title role for the time being. He eventually returned in 1971’s Diamonds are Forever, before officially handing over the quips and Martinis to Roger Moore.

7. Rangers nearly won the European Cup Winners’ Cup

Rangers vs. Bayern Munich

Rangers vs. Bayern Munich

As the sun came up on 1 June, plenty of Scottish football fans will have been nursing sore feelings, as Glasgow Rangers had narrowly missed out on winning the European Cup Winners’ Cup in a tense match with Bayern Munich in Nuremberg the night before. While Bayern had fielded some of football’s finest players, including Sepp Maier, Franz Beckenbauer and Gerd Mülle, Rangers had managed to hold them to a goalless draw for most of the match, and even held the upper hand in the first half. Their one goal had been disallowed, however, and so the match went into extra time, at which point Bayern’s Franz Roth broke through Rangers’ otherwise solid defence and scored.

8. Gabriel García Márquez released One Hundred Years of Solitude

Another slow burner, to Anglophone readers at least, One Hundred Years of Solitude was released on 30 May 1967, and only available in Spanish. It was such a fevered success that Gabriel García Márquez faced a reaction similar to that of Sgt. Pepper, with not only intense critical approval, but widespread popular support from vociferous crowds across all of Spain and Latin America. The book, which tells the story of the Buendía family, was not translated into English until 1970, but it provoked a similar reaction, and Gabriel was eventually awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1982.

9. The last days of pirate radio

Image result for pirate radio

The 1960s beat boom was greatly assisted by pirate radio stations such as Radio Caroline and Radio London, who were serving a young audience with the kind of broad coverage of pop and rock music that hadn’t yet become part of the BBC’s output. As of 1 June, there were ten stations, with an estimated audience of 10 – 15 million listeners. These were perfectly legal broadcasts, providing they came from offshore ships or abandoned sea forts in international waters, but their days were numbered. It took the Marine Broadcasting Offences Act, which became law in August, to shut them down, an event which coincided with the launch of BBC Radio 1 on 30 September, who took the best of the pirate radio DJs – from Tony Blackburn to Johnnie Walker and John Peel – and gave them new jobs.

By the end of the year, The Who had created a conceptual tribute to Radio London, in the form of their album The Who Sell Out, which linked songs together using real jingles and fake adverts, in the manner of a pirate radio broadcast.

10. Tom Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead at the National Theatre

Finally, in theatre land, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead by Czech-born British playwright Tom Stoppard had made it from a premiere at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 1966 to the National Theatre in London, where it began its run on 11 April 1967. As Kirsty Lang says above in the introduction to her April 2017 interview with Stoppard, the absurdist play “launched his career” and was currently being revived at the Old Vic in London starring Daniel Radcliffe and Joshua McGuire.

After its first London run, the play went to Broadway in New York in October 1967 and was turned into a Hollywood film in 1990. Gary Oldman was cast as Rosencrantz, Tim Roth as Guildenstern and Stoppard himself directed.

12 words from 100 years ago we love to use today

100 years ago. 100 years ago the First World War was approaching its third year of battle, of resistance. Approaching its close – though that wouldn’t arrive until for a further year.

The First World War was full of atrocities, horrors and of warfare, yet it also became a melting pot. A cauldron of culture as troops from all over the world were pitted together as an alliance. An alliance which needed communication, a multifaceted communication which served all. Words pinched from here, there and everywhere. Words which still remain a key part of our diction.

Here’s 12 of the best, as collected by BBC Radio 4:


Abbreviated from the French “vin blanc” meaning white wine, this typical British soldier’s alliteration eventually became the word for any kind of wine, as in, “pass that bottle of plonk”.


Continuing with the theme of alcohol, binge was originally a Lancashire term meaning to over-indulge. Whilst the word can have negative connotations around food and drink, it’s also used to describe life-affirming entertainment – from shamelessly listening to podcasts back-to-back, to watching the entire run of your favourite TV series in one sitting. Bliss.

Having a chat/chatting

It’s good to talk and even better to chat, but where did the term come from?

Soldiers from the Commonwealth were often billeted with the British “Tommies“, and that included several regiments from India. In this instance the Hindi word for parasite (“chat”) was the inspiration for this saying. As the prevalence of lice was an everyday problem at the front, men sitting around picking them off their skin led to such groups being described as men “chatting”. In later years this has morphed into the term “chatting” or “having a chat” to mean a group of people, or even two people, sitting around casually talking to each other.


Lice were also directly responsible for this American slang term coined by US infantrymen, meaning lousy or of inferior quality. The eggs of the lice were white and resembled tiny crumbs of bread, hence the word “crummy”.


From the french word “eskiver” meaning to dodge or avoid, this was used during WW1 as slang for shirking duty. In recent times “skiving off” implies a deliberate intent to stay off work, usually coupled with an elaborate excuse such as a dead aunt or an illness of some kind.


Another French word meaning disguise. In 1916 the word began to be used specifically as a term for obfuscating military targets using materials to blend them into their surrounding environment.


Another word popularised by British soldiers but of Indian origin, this time springing from the Urdu word for pleasure – “Kusi” – and the Hindi word “Khush”, meaning happy, easy or pleasant. “Cushy” is now defined as “undemanding, easy, or secure” and applies to any relatively comfy situation, and back then was used in a similar way to describe any military posting that was agreeable i.e. a cushy billet, or a cushypost, but also referred to a wound that was non-fatal yet debilitating, granting the victim some precious time away from the front.


This refers specifically to a shell or a bullet that failed to go off. Now its definition has expanded to include any object that does not work properly, or fails to work at all.

To be in a flap

This was a Naval expression dating from 1916 and refers to the flapping of birds, and means to be worried or excited. Later it became widely used by ground forces in WW1 and led to the term “unflappable” which appeared much later and means “marked by assurance and self-control”.

Over The Top

When someone is exaggerating or behaving in a more pronounced way than need be they are being “over the top”. Of course in WW1 this literally meant going over the top of the trench to charge the enemy, and most likely being mown down by machine-gun fire in the process.


Another bastardisation of language, this time from the Italian word “escarpare” which means to run away. During the war the German fleet was scuppered at Scapa Flow and this re-established the word among English soldiers – to “scarper” being to “leg it” as fast as possible!


Nowadays this refers to large amounts of paperwork, or useless and unwanted printed material such as junk mail. Soldiers in WW1 often used it to ridicule the ludicrous amount of orders and unnecessary paperwork that came from their superiors, likening it to toilet paper, i.e. “bum-fodder”.

If you have a fascination in the English Language, the origins and the evolution, or are more swayed by the back stories of World War One, take a look through our A Level offer at The Sheffield College today!