Tribute to Toby Hayward-Seers

Sheffield Alumnus Toby Hayward-Seers cherished his time in Sheffield, forging lifelong friendships that have left an indelible mark. In honour of his memory, his beloved friends are gathering to celebrate their cherished moments together.

Toby Hayward-Seers

 Tribute from Tom marsh

Many of us will have great memories of Toby in Sheffield, a place that he loved so much. 

He managed to squeeze every ounce of fun over the three years, spending endless time playing football, DJing (b2b headline slots with Paul at the ridge), or doing something completely off-the-wall…a Hitchhike to Brighton was a highlight. 

For someone who had their life tragically cut short, I take solace in the fact that Toby maximised every minute he had. 

Always keen to learn, travel and engage with the world - Toby had a real lust for life. He was always doing something, with someone, like he operated on a 36-hour day. 

In a world filled with so many distractions, Toby always managed to give you his undivided attention. One of those genuinely good people, Toby was always caring, kind and interested in what you had to say. 

After leaving Sheffield, he decided to give back, signing up to volunteer his time supporting students with their career choices. The fact nobody even knew he was doing this, really sums him up. He did good things, quietly, without any need for recognition. 

Although this hurts so much and feels so wrong to say goodbye - we must also be thankful for the time we had. I feel proud and blessed to have known you, Toby. 

I’m so glad you chose Sheffield.

Lots of love, 


Tribute from Sophie Wall 

Toby was one of the first friends I made at Sheffield. As a good friend of my sister, Toby had been instructed by her to take pity on me and be my friend, and I'm so glad he did. As fellow South Londoners with a bunch of mutual friends, carving a friendship of our own at Sheffield was special.

I have fond memories of watching Toby and soon-to-be good friend Paul dj, cuppas at Slinn Street and demanding he performs his iconic pin-drop dance. Toby brought joy, energy and curiosity to every weird and wonderful situation he was in.

Reflecting over the last few weeks, it's apparent how much Toby nurtured connections. He was the glue between so many groups of friends, and I know we've lost one of the greats. Toby was the warmest, kindest person, with a willingness to try anything once. With his quick wit and infectious laugh, it was difficult not to enjoy yourself in his company and it was such a privilege to call him a friend.

Toby, I still can't quite get my head around the fact I'm never going to see you again. Truly one of Sheffield's finest. Love you now and always xxx

Tribute from Heather Mooney 

I first met Toby in fresher weeks at a Ranmoor party, my flatmate had a crush on him, which is no surprise ..…

We instantly became friends, along with his 2 musketeers Paul and Dan. It was even better news for me when I found out we were both studying History. Our paths crossed not only within the History Department but through the many friends we shared, our mutual love of music (Therapy Hour Set at the Ridge was a classic) and being 3rd-year neighbours. The Crookesmoor hill up to Barber Place was always a killer, especially if we’d had one too many.

Luckily for me, both being Londoners, myself and Toby were able to carry on our Sheffield friendship for many years after graduating, although I’ll never forget the memories we shared in the Yorkshire heartland.

It goes without saying that Toby was one of the kindest, smartest, warmest people I’ve ever met. He showed up for everyone, whenever they needed because that was the type of person he was. Over the past few weeks, sharing memories with friends has cemented what a truly wonderful soul he was.

I don’t wish to detract from what a tragic loss this is for everyone who knew Toby, but I feel comfort in the knowledge that he lived the best life, surrounded by people who loved him, right until the end.

Toby, you were my southern comfort in a sea of northern souls. I’m going to miss you dearly. Love you always.

Tribute from Conor Shelton 

I first met Toby at the start of 1st year, during one of the first History lectures at St George’s Church, and it wasn’t long before we started looking for 2nd-year houses together with friends, and subsequently 3rd. Living with Toby and calling him a close friend was a privilege and a joy. He was kind, funny, and so full of character but of all the great qualities Toby had, I will always remember him as selfless and caring. Something that was reflected in his work in higher education, workers' rights and the trade union movement when he left University. Toby always took the time to ask questions about you, your family, and your interests, and it was clear he was truly engaged in the answer. And when we weren’t busy watching darts or playing football, you could always rely on him to break out a dodgy dance move in West Street Live! 

Great memories of a great person. It was a true pleasure and honour to know you. Love you always T

Toby Hayward-Seers with friend

Tribute from Dan Pearce 

Toby was a hard-working and dedicated student at the University of Sheffield, ensuring that he always got the most out of his education. Due to this dedication and hard work, Toby was able to walk out of Sheffield with his main goal, a first-class honours degree. 

However, it was not just a degree he acquired in Sheffield. Due to his openness and caring attitude, he also walked out of Sheffield with a huge number of friends and memories. It was easy for Toby to make friends and affect your life, as he took the time to listen and to get to know you whilst always willing to share his honest thoughts and opinions. This often meant that he had endless opportunities to create memories and live life to its maximum during his short time in Sheffield. From his headline slots at The Ridge to playing Tuesday Club with Redline, to the facilitation of a festival at Endcliffe and a hitchhike to Brighton, Toby was able to have an amazing time at Sheffield, and in his wider life in general. Including one too many five-pound rounds, and late nights at West Street Live. In his three years at Sheffield, Toby was always busy making sure it was a special time for him, and his many friends.  

He was always conscious of appreciating the time that he was living in, often telling me “Daniel this is the best time of our lives.” To which I often considered the fact that he may well be correct. His mindfulness to appreciate every moment goes someway in easing the pain of losing a close friend such as Toby. His acute awareness that university was a time to try new things, meet new people, and most of all, create memories means that we all have a piece of him with us and these memories will live on forever.  

It has been such a privilege for all of us to have known Toby, and we are thankful that we got to spend the times that we did with him.  

Love you forever, T.  


Tribute from Hester Davies Bell 

After expressing an interest in the same genres of music, Toby and I were placed on a show together on Forge Radio. From this point on, alongside Toby’s flatmate and our soon-to-be good friend Paul, the Therapy Hour was born and our friendship began. 

It turned out it was not only a love for music that we had in common. We soon realised that we were both studying History and that, as fellow South Londoners, we already had a number of mutual friends. It didn’t take long for us to become close friends, which we stayed ever since.  

Toby loved our course and being a student at Sheffield, and all the wonderful things it brought with it. I have fond memories of Toby DJing at The Ridge, becoming the host of the - often hilarious - monthly bingo and helping to organise the Endcliff Festival at the end of our first year. Only last year we went back up to Sheffield for a weekend visiting all of our favourite pubs and which, of course, finished at West Street Live. 

Toby was funny, loyal, and always one to give something a go - no matter how creative the idea was. He created a community with him wherever he went and poured energy and effort into every friendship. 

I feel wiser and richer for knowing Toby; it was a privilege to call him a friend.

Tribute from Si Hallam

As Toby’s housemate in second year and as someone who hadn’t known Toby prior to this, his ability to connect with everyone he met made us close friends at Sheffield and in the tragically too few years after that. This ability to build relationships with anyone he spoke to is why his loss will be felt by so many people. 

One of the first things I noticed about Toby was his desire to extract the most out of every day and the way he would give his maximum effort and attention to everything he did. Whether it was studying, DJing, exercising or going out, he always seemed to do so much in a day and he was so committed to any activity he took on. 

A fine footballer with an eye for goal, I’ll always remember Toby's last-minute header to win the first FC San Lorenzo game on the Goodwin pitches. 

He expressed an interest in travelling whilst at uni and he fulfilled this following his time in Sheffield. Whether it was India, Colombia or trips to Eindhoven and Naples to watch his beloved Arsenal, he saw so much of the world and likewise so many places and people across the globe were lucky enough to meet Toby. 

Although I’d give anything to spend one more day with Toby, I take comfort from the fact that he more than made the most of his short time with us. I’m thankful that our paths crossed at Sheffield, and will never forget the times we spent together. 

Love you always Toby X

Tribute from Paul 

A shared interest in music epitomised our relationship. Whether it was starting our own radio show, organising a festival in first year to over 2,000 people, regular DJ slots throughout Sheffield or the late nights sharing new music with each other - life with you was banger after banger and you leave behind a big hole that will never be replaced. 

I remember my first day at uni and entering halls with a real anxiety about what the uni life would be, but meeting you as soon as I opened the flat doors and you greeting me with a smile made it smooth from there on.

I have so many amazing things to say about Toby and it’s just difficult picking out which ones. But I can honestly say you were one of the most considerate, caring and intelligent human beings I ever met. This is reflected through your academia, reaching a first in History, all the way through to your family and all your friends.

It’s still quite not sunk in that you are no longer with us, and I will never get the chance to see you again. But I feel utterly blessed to have shared so many amazing memories with you and I will carry you through my life and always have you in my memory.

RIP T, love you now and always xxx

Tribute from Max Tew 

Toby was one of the first friends I made in Sheffield when along with our great friend Dan, we shared an early seminar group. For reasons I don’t really remember, I just immediately liked him, and all these years later I feel amazingly fortunate to call him a close friend.

Like all of us, I have a collection of wonderful memories of T, of his ear for music, of us making up 2 parts of a now iconic 3 man midfield, his bizarre one-liners, impeccable style, and his constant analysis of the steady decline of Arsenal FC. However, above all, when I think of T I just think of possibly all-time great chewer of the fat, a guy capable of equally life-affirming, funny and insightful conversations about girls and heartbreak as about porridge or Q-TIP. I always enjoyed being with Toby, chatting into the small hours, or just taking a 5-minute library break or a walk between lectures. He put so much into everything that he did, from his degree to his sets to his friendships as he did with ours, particularly since graduating despite us living in different cities. He had time for everything and everyone. He made me laugh, he made me think and he made me care.

While we all comprehend the loss of T, I’m wary of saying anything to detract from the devastation that everyone around him is now feeling. But alongside all this, I do feel such a depth of gratitude for having known T, for the positive and connecting influence he had on all of us, as well as all the lovely moments I shared with him, so for now all I can say is thanks.

Thanks for the laughs, the chats, the tunes, the through-balls, that smile and for showcasing possibly the best jaw-line South Yorkshire will ever see. Toby was undoubtedly one of the best people I’ve ever known, and one of those rare people who I continued to truly admire long after getting to know. Like so many others will say, love, miss and remember you now and always. And yes, this is a hell of a touch.. XX

Toby Hayward-Seers