Thursday, 31 March 2011

Max and Sammy

     I discovered this wooden cross a week of two ago in woodland not far from where I live.  It's in an area of the woods that I don't visit often, a quiet secluded place.  I don't know who put the cross there, how long it's been there, or who Max and Sammy are, cherished family pets perhaps?

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Timeline Mural Launch

     An event was held today in the Bradford Urban Garden to launch the new Timeline Mural. The mural was designed by local school pupils with the assistance of graffiti artist Nick Halahan and Bradford rap artist Philip Charles who is pictured here performing at the event.

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Drystone Wall - Haworth

     These drystone walls are everywhere in Yorkshire, they form the field boundaries in valley bottoms, run up steep valley sides, and sometimes run for miles across open moorland.  This wall is on the moors above Haworth.

Monday, 28 March 2011

Incense Sticks

     These incense sticks were on a market stall in Darley Street in the town centre.  The Saturday market was organised to support women entrepreneurs in the Bradford area and to help promote their businesses.  The day was very cold and dull and I was struggling to find something colourful to photograph until I spotted these incense sticks.  I didn't take much notice of the labels on the jars at the time, but when I got back home and put the pictures onto the computer I noticed a jar on the bottom row which said Opium.  It might just be me, but Jasmine, Lavender and Magic Garden conjure up a picture of a garden on a Summer day, but Opium just makes me think of an Opium den.

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Bradford International Film Festival

     Well, it's the last day of the Bradford Film Festival and not one picture of the event.  To be honest, I've never really been that interested in film, unlike my father who saw 'The Great Caruso' forty seven times when it first came out.  Probably the only two actors I could easily recognise would be Sean Connery or Michael Caine.  The picture above is of the bonnet of the BMW car used to ferry VIPs to and from the Film Festival.  It was parked outside of the Media Museum, so there must have been some film celebrity in there, but I don't know who, and I probably wouldn't recognise them anyway, unless it was Michael Caine or Sean Connery.

Saturday, 26 March 2011

Pirates of Shipley Market Square

     Shoppers in Shipley were entertained by a band of marauding pirates today as their ship sailed around the market square.  After kidnapping a few passers-by the pirates were joined by Peter Pan for some open air entertainment.  Children and performers later took part in a parade around the town centre.  I think I enjoyed it all just as much as the kids!

Friday, 25 March 2011

Toucan Crossings

     There are a number of these crossings appearing in the town centre, they allow cyclists to ride across the road alongside pedestrians, I believe they are called Toucan crossings.  I'm all for cycling, I'm a cyclist myself, but I'm not sure mixing cyclists with pedestrians is such a good idea, I always get off and push my bike in pedestrian areas, it may add a few minutes to my journey but at least I'm not going to injure anyone.

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Mirror - Shaeron Caton-Rose

     I recently called in at the Pop Up arts space in Centenary Square to see an exhibition by local  documentary photographer Tim Smith and historian Irna Qureshi. The exhibition explores the links between Indian and Pakistani people living in Bradford and other areas of the UK and The Grand Trunk Road which runs across India and Pakistan.  Also on display was this unusual installation of fragments of mirror by Shaeron Caton-Rose.

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Timeline Mural - Bradford Urban Garden

     Schoolchildren were today working on a new mural in the Bradford Urban Garden.  The year nine pupils from Challenge College were assisted by graffiti artists in creating a timeline mural named 'Past, Present and Future.'  Different parts of the community have been brought together on this project as some of the ideas for the artwork have been provided by senior citizens from the Thorpe Edge area of Bradford.

Tuesday, 22 March 2011


     Having spent an enjoyable few days walking in the Lake District, and with the weather being so pleasant for the time of year, I decided to return home through the Yorkshire Dales, stopping off at various places to take photographs.  This picture shows the infant River Wharfe at Langstrothdale.  The Dales Way footpath passes through this valley on its way from Ilkley to Bowness in the Lake District.  There are link paths from both Leeds and Bradford to the start of this walk at Ilkley.

Monday, 21 March 2011

Bandstand - Roberts Park, Saltaire

     This is an early morning picture of the bandstand in Roberts Park, Saltaire.  Restoration work on the park was completed last summer and included the construction of this bandstand.  The statue on the right is Sir Titus Salt, the building beyond is the United Reformed Church in Saltaire.

Sunday, 20 March 2011

The Hole

     This is what lies beyond the green painted hoardings of the Bradford Urban Garden.  These excavations and foundations were started several years ago, then the recession hit and everything was put on hold.  The site is referred to by most Bradfordians as 'The Hole'.

Saturday, 19 March 2011


     I posted a picture of this wooden structure back in January and said at the time that I didn't know what it was.  Well, it was initially used as a tiny cinema, built by artist Noah Rose and showing short films by film-maker Lucy Bergman.  The side panels were then removed and the structure remains as an art work in the Urban Garden.

Friday, 18 March 2011

Urban Garden Paintings

     A number of paintings have recently been fixed to the wall of the Bradford Urban Garden.  The brightly coloured paintings have been produced by local schoolchildren, the one above, as you can see, is by Lower Fields Primary School.

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Spring Silhouette - Peel Park

     This statue, on the grand promenade in Peel Park is named Spring.  It was donated to the park in Victorian times by the Bradford Band of Hope and Union, a Baptist Society that promoted abstinence from drink.  Bradford has several large parks which were built in the Victorian era.  The textile industry was at its peak at this time and living conditions for the workers were probably at their worst.

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Sea of Crocuses

     These Crocuses are in full bloom at the moment in Lister Park.  Park staff have worked with local school children over the last five years to plant thousands of these bulbs.  The bulbs make a colourful sight for passing motorists as they are planted on a grass bank alongside one of the main routes into the city.

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

Weather Station - Lister Park

     This fenced off enclosure in Lister Park contains a weather station.  Every day since January 1st 1908, air temperature, rainfall, humidity, wind speed and other information has been collected and sent to the Met Office to be compiled with other weather information from across the UK.  The weather for January 1st 1908 was  no sunshine, no rain, min 32F, max34F, av33F.

Monday, 14 March 2011

The Bradford Mughal Garden

     I like to stand on the terrace that overlooks the water garden in Lister Park.  The garden is based on a South Asian Mughal design with symmetrical paths, canals and fountains.  On a warm day visitors sit and look at the fountains, read a book, sunbathe, or just slowly walk up and down, the flowing water seems to have a calming effect.

Sunday, 13 March 2011


     Starlings have been gathering on this electricity pylon near my house recently.  They gather early, around  six in the morning, stay five or ten minutes, and then they are gone.  I've tried several times to capture them perched on the cables, but when they see me approaching they do a quick swirl or two around the pylon and disappear into the distance, so this is todays picture, Starlings swirling.

Saturday, 12 March 2011

Heaton Woods - Tree Planting

     I had seen a small piece in my local paper about tree planting in Heaton Woods and decided to go along with my camera.  I have to confess, having lived my entire life in the Bradford area, that I have never visited these woods before.  The tree planting was in an area of land recently acquired by the Heaton Woods Trust, a group of volunteers who manage and maintain the ancient and more recently planted woodland, paths and ponds in the area.  Pictured here is the Mayor of Bradford Cllr. Peter Hill.
     The woodland in this area is really beautiful and I will definitely be returning to take some photographs in a week or two when the trees come into leaf.

Friday, 11 March 2011

Bronte Country

     This ruined farmhouse high on the moors above Haworth is thought to be the location of the Earnshaw home in Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights.  The ruin is within walking distance of Haworth and is popular with Japanese literary tourists, some of the footpath signs in the area are in Japanese as well as English.

Thursday, 10 March 2011

Sunwin House - Bradford

     The building in the centre of the picture is known as Sunwin House and was at one time a Co-operative Emporium.  The flat roofed room on top of the glazed stair tower was used as an aircraft lookout point for approaching enemy bombers during the Second World War.

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Connecting The City

     This sculpture by Rick Faulkner stands in Duke Street, opposite one of the entrances to Forster Square railway station, it uses the idea of the thread as a connection to the city centre.  The needle and thread theme is also a tribute to the burlers and menders who worked in the mills of Bradford and who examined and repaired tiny flaws in the miles of woven fabric that the city once produced.
     I had an aunt that did this job for most of her life, retirement age was sixty years, she carried on working until she was seventy two, starting at something like six in the morning.  It sounds tough, but  I suppose we could all end up working at this age to pay off the national debt.

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Vespa Badges

     Following on from yesterdays picture, and purely by chance, I spotted these enamel badges featuring various Vespa scooters.  They were displayed in a jewellery cabinet consisting of mainly football badges, the badge on the lower left seems to depict a typical sportsmanlike football scene.

Monday, 7 March 2011

Northern Soul

     I was walking back to my car the other day when I spotted a bright yellow Vespa scooter parked in a corner, this is a detail from the side panel of the scooter.  I hadn't seen the Northern Soul logo for a long, long time.  On returning home, my 21 year old son took a look at the picture and said "whats Northern Soul?"  Well, for anyone under 21, or 31, or possibly 41, it's kind of American Soul based dance music that was popular in nightclubs in Northern England in the late 1970s.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

Fairtrade Photographer - Bradford

     I often bump into photographers from my local area when I'm out and about with my camera, but I hadn't seen Olutayo Dyrodola from Nigeria before.  He was photographing yesterdays Fairtrade event on a voluntary basis, he is currently studying mechanical engineering at Bradford University, he hopes to work in this field or the telecoms industry when he finishes his studies

Saturday, 5 March 2011

Fairtrade Event - Bradford

     On a visit to the town centre this morning I came across an event to help demonstrate the districts support for Fairtrade goods.
    Fairtrade producers receive a price for their goods which covers sustainable production, and  they also receive an additional premium which can then be invested by themselves in local development projects which can improve their lives.
     I tried one of the chocolate bars in the picture, and I can tell you that it was pretty good!

Friday, 4 March 2011

Robert Peel Statue - Peel Park, Bradford

     Robert Peel (1788-1850) is regarded as the father of the modern police force.  He served twice as prime minister and in 1829 established a London police force of a thousand constables which were nicknamed "Bobbies" or "Peelers".  Other cities across the UK were later obliged to form their own police forces.
     Interestingly, whilst looking up a few facts on the Internet to go with this picture I came across this 'Peel came to office during an economic recession which had seen a slump in world trade and a budget deficit of £2.5 million run up by the Whigs.  Confidence in banks and businesses was low and a trade deficit existed'.  Now, does that sound familiar to anyone?

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Naked Man Cafe - Settle

     This is the unusually named 'Naked Man Cafe' in the town of Settle, about an hours drive from Bradford.  This small market town in the Ribble valley is a popular base for visitors wishing to explore the surrounding countryside, or take a train journey on the Settle to Carlisle line, or even visit the market.  The market is held every Tuesday throughout the year.

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Peel Park Lake - Bradford

     Had a quick walk around Peel Park this afternoon.  The lady in the picture must feed the ducks and pigeons on a regular basis as the birds surrounded her as soon as she appeared. 

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Route 66 - Shipley

     I regularly cycle past this marker post on the canal towpath at Shipley.  This section of the towpath is part of the National Cycle Network Route 66 which, when completed, will run from Hull to Manchester via York and Leeds.  I get quite a kick from cycling so you could say "I get my kicks on Route 66".