Leeds today: Cards, ice, TdF, Adams, fashion, dance, sculpture, photos, crumpets and ghosts

Happy Monday Readers, it’s Naziya! Have you received your Christmas card from Greg Mulholland? Ours was hand delivered yesterday, the result of a constituency-wide competition for 11 year olds. I’m just not sure how child friendly, the prize, a hamper from Salvos, is.

After a week which saw sub-zero temperatures and icy conditions around the region, admissions to Leeds’ A&E departments doubled. Most were of a minor nature such as bumps, cuts and bruises; however, LGI and St James’ put their winter escalation plans into action by drafting more than 70 extra members of staff to cope with the extra demands. At this point I think it’s worth mentioning the usefulness of inexpensive crampons. After my own weather induced fall a few weeks ago, these handy slip-ons have me walking about on frosty pavements with complete confidence.

It has been confirmed that Yorkshire has won the right to host the start of the 2013 Tour de France on the 5th and 6th of July 2014. Guesses are that it was the ‘breathtaking landscapes’ and ‘passionate local people’ wot did it and Inside Leeds predicts a ‘huge economic boost’ for the region. But there are already questions as to how much it cost the council to make the winning bid. So far the money issue has been kept under wraps but The Citizen is calling for more clarity.

‘Not just our contribution to the bid for the rights to stage the race, but stuff like the roads (pot-hole filling, signage, closures, marshals, etc etc) and whatever other investment we’ve signed up to so the estimated £300m benefit (where do they get these figures from?) comes the region’s way.

Nonetheless, Bradley Wiggin’s landslide triumph in a (very emotional) Sport’s personality awards last night (first British Tour de France winner, Olympic gold medallist), the British public seem to be developing a huge appetite for this sport and excitement at this upcoming event should be spectacular. Leeds’ own Nicola Adams (first woman to win a boxing gold medal), looking incredibly stylish in a dark grey tailored suit and pale gold shirt, was also shortlisted for voting last night but didn’t make the top three.

Made in Leeds was the concept introduced by Hebe media group earlier this year (the brand ambassadors behind the Trinity Leeds development) to promote the story of Leeds’ independent fashion, retail and digital businesses. Since then, amongst other things Hebe have launched digital fashion week, independentleeds.com  and SLB.PR. For 2013 they want to invite anyone who is involved with the fashion and textiles industry, in whatever capacity, to sign up to the Made in Leeds movement.

Wakefield’s Hepworth gallery has announced a new collaborative performance based exhibition including the Northern Ballet, South Asian Arts UK, Cinematic Orchestra and Wakefield City Soul Club next year. The Ultimate Form, ‘fusion of dance, music, fashion, art, sculpture and landscape’ will celebrate British female artists, in particular the eponymous Barbara Hepworth. A collage and light box show will be on display from February with the main piece scheduled for May. South Asian dance received another boost this week when the Kirklees based Bhangra arts group VIRSA received a lottery boost of £30,000.

Photographic exhibition Vernacular Photography, which from next week will reside at No1 Leeds, showcases souvenir photographs and amateur portraits to provide a snapshot of a personal nature. In Yer Face is an exhibition presenting the artwork of teenagers from across North East Leeds at Union 105 Gallery, Chapeltown while Bird’s Yard  have just two more instalments of their Crumpets, Cake and Crafts club left for Thursdays.

We all love to be frightened and not just at Halloween. Christmas spookiness has a deliciously shivery nature to it that seems a little removed from earlier annual horrors. Aiming for this, Temple Newsom is hosting a ghost hunt this Saturday night with the spiritual medium Janet Rushton whilst The Howard Assembly Rooms will be presenting a ‘folk ghost story for Christmas’ with traditional midwinter melodies, this Thursday.

A Christmas wonderland event is planned for this Thursday at the old Holy Spirit church on Tempest Road in Beeston. There’s news that the site will be turned into a community centre next year and as part of that Journey into Christmas tries to bring the old building to life again.

That’s all from me this festive season; stay tuned for Wednesday’s issue and I’ll see you on the other side.

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