Leeds today: OWUW, Hour Leeds, South Leeds Life group, East Street Arts funding, Roundhay Park this weekend

Best wishes of this Friday morning to all dear readers.

It’s the beginning of a particularly exciting weekend here in Leeds. Today sees the start of the three-day OverWorlds & UnderWorlds event, which brings together a series of public performances and installations across the city of Leeds by the Quay Brothers and a selection of other artists. The colossal structure of a boat lodged in a tree that arrived bang in the middle of Briggate last weekend was the first clue as to the content of the shows. Visitors will follow a map leading them through the city centre where they will find performances involving water and music, from live music at the County Arcade through to film and performers in the alcoves of the Dark Arches. It promises to be an exhilarating weekend, exciting and transforming the way we see the city around us. If you’re paying a visit, let us know and tell us what you make of it.

Here’s one to contemplate on pay day: would you give up an hour’s salary to tackle poverty? Councillor Lucinda Yeadon says that by donating just one hour’s salary, Leeds folk can “make a real difference to tackling some of the most underlying causes of poverty in our city”. Yeadon spoke at the dawn of the ‘Hour Leeds’ campaign, which was launched yesterday by St Vincent Support Centre, highlighting poverty here in Leeds as well as raising funds for St Vincent’s to do more work to alleviate the challenges faced by the poorest on our doorstep.

More great news elsewhere on South Leeds Life as we welcome the new South Leeds Life Group. What began not even two years ago as an experiment with just six people sitting in a room playing with WordPress has gone on to become a true achievement for “hyperlocal journalism”, setting in motion the transformation in local media that we have begun to see here in Leeds, in which BGL is proud to play a part. The South Leeds Life Group is a new community group aiming to build on that success, aiming to inform, to get people involved, to foster community spirit, and to provide a platform for locals in the area. Their next meeting is planned for Tuesday 19th June.

Raise a glass (or a mug of tea, as it’s still early) to East Street Arts, which has successfully secured funding for its three year Catalyst project from Arts Council England. Artistic Director Karen Watson says the grant is “a real boon” as East Street Arts develops its infrastructure and seeks to expand relationships with the companies with which it engages through its temporary space project.

North Leeds News gives us the in on not just one but two days of fun and games at Roundhay Park this weekend. Gala Day 2012 begins at midday on Soldier’s Field, with a children’s funfair, BBQ, brass band, beer tent, trade stalls, dog shows… blimey, the list goes on! The event is in association with Yorkshire Cancer Centre, and runs until 5pm. And on Sunday, head along for the 20th Dragon Boat Racing event on Waterloo Lake in aid of Martin House Children’s Hospice, in which teams battle it out in races across the lake. The fundraiser starts bright and early at 9am.

That’s all from me and the team for another week. Remember to check back this afternoon for our latest Friday Comment feature, and it’s one for the filmmakers and fans today…

Have a great weekend!

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