Everything you need to know about Sheffield slang

You obviously need to learn what ‘mardy bum’ really means…

So, you've come over to Sheffield and realised we speak some sort of weird language and haven't got a clue what we're talking about. Well, fear not because this article will become your life saver because it can be daunting.

It might, at first, sound complete nonsense to you, but if you want to be a true Sheffielder, you must learn the lingo. So, to make it a little easier I will be your translator and break things down for you…

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The Steel City


This can simply be translated as nothing. Example: "I've had nowt to eat."


Simply is something. Example: "Do you want to do somert today?"


Means right. Example: "I reyt love a bit of hendos me."


This means cold, you could possibly here people saying: "you're reyt nesh you". This is a true northern sentence.


Chewing gum. Example: "Give us a chuddy then."


Moody or miserable. Example: "You're reyt mardy you."


Everyone from Sheffield will call you love, we're just really friendly like that. We sort of use it as an alternative for 'mate'. Example: "You all reyt me love?"


Means sweets. Example: "You want some spice getting from shop?" (yes we often miss out the) oh, and getting is pronounced more like 'gerring.'

Tea refers not only to the drink, but to dinner as well


Means food, popular amongst the older generation. Example: "What you having for ya snap?" Northerners generally say this as a way of asking what are you having for lunch. Weird, I know.


Bread roll/ bun etc, this can be a strong debate in your uni flat. Example: "I'm gunna have a sarnie on a nice breadcake."


Means, Give over. Example: "Gi'ore nah."

Ey up

Generally means 'how are you?' Many Yorkshire folk can be heard using this as a greeting down the pub when they see their mates. Example: "Eyup pal."

Nah then

Now then, sounds very abrupt but this can be a conversation starter amongst some Sheffield folk. Example: "Nah then, you alreyt?."

Lug oil

You mainly hear this phrase from the older Yorkshire generation. It strangely is another word for ears. Example: "Pin back thee lug oils."

A reyt good band

Seven while three

I honestly didn't notice anything wrong with this saying until I moved into my uni flat and was surrounded by people from different areas and they looked at me blankly. This basically means the person is working seven until three.


Means vomiting. Example: "Im gipping at the smell of that."


This is often put into a sentence such as "that person is sound". This basically means you like that person and you approve of them.


Basically means get off but pronounced differently. Example: "Geroff that nah."


This is commonly used around Sheffield instead of Grandma or grandmother.

Owl or blade?

This is basically asking do you support Sheffield Wednesday (owl) or Sheffield United (blade). Be prepared for this to create a huge divide amongst Sheffield folk, oh and word of advice avoid the trams on match days.


As well as the breadcake debate this can be a huge conversation starter. Us Sheffielders refer to alleyways as jennels.


People who hate Meadowhall will use this phrase to describe the place. It's often used a lot over Christmas as the place is crazy around that time and it's definitely a no go zone full of screaming kids, endless cues and don't even get me started on the January sales.

Example: "Meadowhall, more like Meadowhell!"


Some may call it Sheffield's delicacy this is of course Henderson's relish. Don't ever mention Lea & Perrins to a Sheffielder, or dare say you prefer it.


This is actually a place in Sheffield, believe it or not.


Is a sandwich. Example: "Im gunna make me self a nice bacon buttie."


Is down. Example: "Get dahn here nah."

"Turn big light on"

This may seem strange, but refers to the main light in the room.

Do you wanna go dahn pub?


Means thank you. Example: "Ta, me love."


Means dirty. Example: "You look loppy you do."


This means dinner to us, not just the drink. Example: "What's for tea then mum."

So, you now know 30 of the most common Sheffield phrases and slang, some may say you have too much time on your hands but I would say that's time well spent. You're now well on your way to becoming a proper Sheffielder and are now starting to somewhat understand what we mean and that we're not a strange bunch after all.