Leeds today: litter, bikes, Occupy, Holbeck, opera, Woolgather and brass bands.

Helloooo! Mike here. Halfway through another glorious week and we’ve got a nice long weekend coming up where the weather is looking… well, changeable, I think is the best way of putting it (or, the met people don’t know).

In the news today, then:

Could Woodhouse Moor be closed? A local councillor has argued that it could be a possibility after hundreds of visitors to the park left it looking like a tip last weekend. The message to visitors is “we are happy to see the park used but, like us, please appreciate and respect it.” Apparently someone brought a sofa along to the park, which was subsequently set on fire. Not cool, guys. Not cool. Take your rubbish home with you, please.

Although we said on Monday that the road safety rate in Leeds had improved, it appears that the cycling accident rate has not. In fact, it’s getting considerably worse. There was an event yesterday where cyclists were shown safe ways of negotiating lorries with poor sight lines, but this is a two-way street; cyclists can wear high-viz and helmets, but cars and lorries have to respect their space. Becky James, the council’s road safety manager, said:

“We know there has been a huge increase in the number of cyclists and there are a number of factors for this. We want to make sure that everyone can cycle in safety.”

There will be a series of events over the summer to help cyclists and drivers on Leeds roads.

The BBC is reporting that the people occupying the Westfield site in Bradford have been asked to leave. The protesters, who set up tents on the site last Saturday, are trying to stimulate a discussion on the lack of progress at the site since the developers stopped work in 2008.

Our friends at the Healthy Living Network have told us about some funding available to community groups in Pudsey via Community First For Pudsey. Grants of up to £2500 are available if your group meets certain criteria. It looks like the deadline has passed, but it is still worth quickly putting an application together if you qualify.

It’s Wednesday, which means that South Leeds Life have put together their weekly links list. Well worth the read to see what is happening south of the river.

Eventswise, at the Otley Courthouse on Thursday evening is Robin Ince doing Happiness Through Science. Robin talks about evolution as well as the depths of his own consciousness in this acclaimed comedy show, kicks off at 8pm, £12/10. Big fan of Robin Ince here, should be a good gig.

Slightly further afield is a new chamber opera, Babur in London, on at the Howard Assembly Room in Leeds on 14 and 15 June. From Opera North’s press office:

It’s an unusual piece – a contemporary story of the fears, desires and beliefs of four young people as they prepare to carry out a terrorist attack on London. Their plans are disturbed by the ghost of Babur – the first Mughal Emperor – whose differing interpretation of faith forces them to challenge their convictions.

There’s a video preview of the piece, well worth watching.

The Wharf Chambers is playing host to Bang the Bore on June 6th. The group, who publicise and put on music and film events over the country, has five bands for £4. Total bargain.

We’ve been warned that the Woolgather Art Prize awards night has had to be moved to the 9th of June. If you were planning on attending then please be aware that this is the final day of the exhibition, too!

Finally today, the Northerner has a look at the brass band competition that happens every Whitsuntide in Saddleworth. There are 23 brass band competitions across the area and it’s a great day out with more than a few decent pubs to get stuck into. A real part of Yorkshire heritage, this, and if you’re free you should head on over there.

That’s it for today – if you’ve got anything happening then please carry on letting us know! Details on the Contact page, and we always look forwards to reading your emails. Thanks for reading, and we’ll see you tomorrow.

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