Leeds today: cuts, more cuts, bulk, education, mines, beer, buses, carols, film, theatre and twerking.

Hello Leeds! Wednesday, midweek, cold, crisp, faintly foggy. Let’s do some news!

More cuts to the local budget, so a 2% council tax rise being considered by LCC (for the record, for a band A house that’s about £7/yr, for Band D it’s about £26). The YEP reaction is worth a read as it takes a brief look at why this situation has come about (basically, Westminster). The Leeds Citizen’s view is also really worth a read as it looks at the headline cuts that are also going to be made in addition to a proposed hike, and you can bet that as TLC gets a better look at the proposals more interesting stuff will show up over there.

One of the cuts is in the bulky waste service that LCC provides; 12 times a year you can book a kerbside collection of things like sofas, beds, wardrobes and large electrical items like fridges and washing machines. However, this will be cut to three times a year, which seems pretty reasonable; if you’re changing your bed once a month perhaps something in your life needs to change.

Some bus services are at risk in some areas as local authorities cut the public subsidy to bus companies. A report was published this week – called “Buses in Crisis”, which doesn’t seem alarmist at all – that looks at how buses are funded. You know what would be a simple solution to this? Nationalise the bus companies. These things are not supposed to be piggy banks, they’re supposed to be a method of efficiently moving people from one place to another. Anyway.

There’s some business start-up workshops at libraries across Leeds. These really are useful for people unsure as to how you go about setting up your own business.

There’s some new funding for postgraduate study at the University of Leeds, focusing on taught courses – Masters, mostly – with the hope that many students will be able to secure PhD and MPhil places.

A former colliery in Pontefract is to be turned into a 900-home site with shops, a medical centre and new park. Spoil heaps will be landscaped and at some point a link road to the M62 could be built. This is great, but we really hope that jobs can also be found there otherwise it’s just going to be another estate.

We’re forever talking about the North-South divide, so take a look at this interesting survey from the Guardian about the price of beer across the country.

The new issue of The City Talking is now out, and here’s their See & Do list for this week:

Christmas music or carols? Take a look at this list from Leeds Inspired. If carols aren’t your thing then in the last of the Christmas films at the Town Hall, tonight is Singing in the Rain and two others – see p.19 of this PDF. That PDF has lots of Xmassy ideas at the Town Hall, and there’s a plethora of Christmas theatre offerings, including at the WYP, The Jungle Book, with a review from the Culture Vulture, and Raymond Briggs’s Father Christmas (!); Jack and the Beanstalk at the City Varieties, or an alternative version (with twerking?!) in Wakefield – review from the CV; and the ballet of Cinderella at the Grand Theatre.

Finally, there’s Bring the Happy at Leeds Town Hall, from Invisible Flock with Hope & Social. As that doesn’t quite explain what it is, here’s some detail from the CV.

And that’s us done for today! Thanks for reading and we’ll see you on Friday! Have a great week.

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