It’s with a bit of a sad face that I am announcing the closure of BGL on Dec 20th, 2013. It’s been a great two-and-a-half years but the work involved in keeping BGL running and innovative and useful and fun is getting to be too much, and not enough fun to keep this place going.
So unless someone feels able and willing to take on BGL (see below) then we’re shutting up shop, saying sayonara, leaving the building, doing a runner, kicking it, calling it a day, throwing in the towel, folding, calling for a taxi, looking for the coat check stub, shouting ‘last orders’ and pulling down the blinds on what was a very useful and moderately successful measure put in place to fill a gap, temporarily, when the Guardian Leeds project was canned back in May 2011. We were only supposed to be doing this for a little bit, while other projects were picked up and taken more seriously than this one, and yet here we are.
We’ve had fun, worked with some amazing people (some of whom I’m still astonished were happy to throw their lot in with us for a little while), caused debate, sparked arguments, made a few people rethink what the scores were with blogging (although, perhaps, not enough), and done a good job of what we set out to do: give a wider audience links to local news that wasn’t being covered by the mainstream media.
That’s all we wanted to do; look at the smaller stories that deserved more than 40 words in a newspaper read by fifteen people on its way to lining the budgie’s cage. We’ve tried to entertain, to educate and to extend the realm of local blogging in Leeds. I like to think we did that. I certainly hope we did. We covered events, too; we’ve worked with a few people over the years who have been very generous and let us into events for free (or not very much), and we thank them for that.
We aren’t vanishing right now, though. We’ve got a consistent and regular schedule right up to Dec 20th (thanks mostly to the incredible writers and researchers we’ve got at the moment) and we’re still accepting stories and news and events and anything you’d like to see publicised just that little bit more.
If you think you’d like to run BGL in future – be the face, the keeper of the passwords, the email manger, the one who coughs up occasionally to let people go to certain things, the C-in-C, the last line, the one who is ultimately responsible – then please get in touch. Be aware that I have quite strict requirements for my replacement, and that it is a surprising amount of work; I’m not just going to hand over the reins to anybody.
In the meantime, please enjoy the last six weeks of BGL. If you’ve got any fond memories of the place, if you heard of a story or gig in our pages that changed your life, then we’d love to hear from you! And if you’ve ever written for us or sent us stories in the past then please accept our heartfelt thanks for keeping the good ship BGL afloat over these years. If you’ve ever read this blog – which of course you have – then thank you too; we’ve only ever done this as a service and if we’ve been of service to you then our job has been a success.