As the sky darkens over Sheffield Hallam University’s Institute of Arts, and thunder claps in the distance, it’s clear the final CreativeMornings Sheffield before the summer is going to be a stormy one.And it’s not just the weather that’s stormy.Speaker for the morning, Magid Magid AKA the Lord Mayor of Sheffield, has created a storm in Sheffield and beyond. The 29-year-old is the youngest Mayor the city has seen. His inauguration photo, featuring ‘that squat’ went viral online and Magid’s now famous Doc Marten’s and yellow cap have appeared in newspapers and timelines around the world.“I told them how I was going to do my picture and they lost their shit. Because they had done it the same for 40 years.”The theme for July is Intention and clasped in Magid’s hands, written on official Lord Mayor’s paper are his own intentions for his year as Mayor.“I wanted to make the Lord Mayor role more meaningful. My first intention was to spread positive messages and champion what is good about Sheffield. I wanted to engage people on an emotional level.”With the world seemingly after a piece of Sheffield’s Mayor, Magid hasn’t stopped since his inauguration in (which happened to feature Imperial March from Star Wars) in May 2018. Thousands of people across the city have stopped him for a selfie, he’s been snapped at festivals, community events and has even been asked to ‘do the squat’ in his local supermarket.“I never expected to be Lord Mayor”Magid first moved to Sheffield aged five as a Somali refugee. After growing up in the city, he moved to Hull to study Aquatic Zoology. There, he discovered politics and became the SU president – ““I didn’t know the difference between left and right but I knew I cared about certain issues.”After university he set up a digital marketing company with a friend, then he worked for housing charity Shelter. The he joined the Green party and became a councillor, his colleagues put his name forward to be Mayor and he took up the position in May.For Magid, his intention for his remaining months as the Lord Mayor of Sheffield remains simple.“At any given opportunity I get I try and plug Sheffield, champion Sheffield and get as many people talking about Sheffield as possible.”
Words by Molly McGreevy