Saturday, 30 April 2011

Festival of Vintage - York

     I have been to my first vintage fashion festival today.  The event is not really connected with Bradford as it took place at a very busy York Racecourse.  This was my first picture of the day, I think the two young ladies may have been professional models as they held a pose and looked straight into the camera without any prompting, I did go back later to see if I could find out a little bit about them but they were gone.

Friday, 29 April 2011

Ivegate Arch - Bradford

     The Ivegate Arch, erected in 1988 and designed by Peter Parkinson stands at the bottom of Ivegate, one of the oldest streets in the city.  The central archway is flanked either side by wrought iron panels depicting important aspects of Bradford's past and present.  This is part of the arch showing some of the lower panels.

Thursday, 28 April 2011

Mohammed Ali - Graffiti Art

     I like to visit Lister Park regularly as there is usually something new to photograph, like this work by Graffiti Artist Mohammed Ali.  It's also interesting to stand back and watch other peoples reactions to works like this, one chap was totally bewildered and came up to me and repeated several times "what is it, it must be something", which it is.

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Hung Out To Dry - Marcus Levine

     A new sculpture has appeared in Lister Park by Local artist Marcus Levine.  The work is called Hung Out To Dry and consists of two nails standing around fifteen feet tall with a stainless steel panel suspended between them.  The panel has around twenty eight thousand nails driven into it to create the pattern that you can see in the picture.

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Agincourt Volley

     These archers were taking part in a tournament organised by Panda Bowmen of Bramhope, the shooting ground is actually on the outskirts of Leeds, but a small number of the archers were from Bronte Archers in Bradford.  The type of bow being used is the traditional English longbow which requires an awful lot of skill and practise to be used accurately (I know, I've tried it and I gave up).  The picture was taken at the end of the tournament where the participants gather on the shooting line and release their arrows simultaneously which is known as an Agincourt Volley.

Monday, 25 April 2011

Bluebells - Heaton Woods

     Just a short distance from the Bradford to Saltaire road, one of the busiest highways in the area, you can find Heaton woods.  As you enter the woods the traffic noise disappears and you find yourself on a stream side path in a wooded valley, and at this time of year there are carpets of Bluebells in the dappled shade.  It's my favourite time of year for woodland walks.

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Silsden Sewer Rats - Easter Egg Run

     I went along to an Easter Egg run organised by the Silsden Sewer Rats motorcycle club today.  The club members gather in a car park in Silsden before riding out to nearby Airedale Hospital with Easter eggs and donations for the children's ward.  There were quite a few machines on the car park with custom paintwork, sweeping exhaust pipes, and acres of chrome, almost mobile sculptures you could say.  If you get the impression that I like these machines, I do, and then there's the noise they make...

Saturday, 23 April 2011

St George's Day Celebrations - Bradford

     The weather was warm and sunny for the St George's Day celebrations held in Centenary Square today.  The crowds were entertained by live music and various street performers including the act above which was especially popular with the young children.

Friday, 22 April 2011

Wool Exchange - Bradford

     This is the Wool Exchange on Market Street in the centre of Bradford.  The building was completed in 1867 to a design by local architects Lockwood & Mawson, the foundation stone was laid by the Prime Minister of the day Lord Palmerston.  The building was used up until the 1960s by Bradford wool traders but is currently occupied by a Waterstones book shop on the ground floor, and by a number of smaller businesses in the rest of the building.

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Little Germany

     This is the view from the Little Germany area of Bradford looking towards the town centre and City Hall.  Just beyond the hoardings at the bottom of the street you can see part of the infamous 'hole', the excavations and foundations of a shopping complex which was put on hold due to the recession.  Many of the textile warehouses built here in the 1860s and 1870s were owned by German merchants hence the name 'Little Germany'.

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Salts Mill - Saltaire

     People living in the Yorkshire area will recognise this much photographed view of Salts Mill in Saltaire, it is very similar to one used in the introduction to a television news programme which is broadcast daily here in Yorkshire.  The mill is a grade II listed building and  now contains an art gallery, shops and a restaurant.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Jalhandar to Amritsar in half an hour

     I think you could probably get from Jalhandar to Amritsar in half an hour on one of these.  This chap was posing on a police motorcycle while his friend took a picture on a mobile phone, I sneaked in and poached the shot.

Monday, 18 April 2011

Kirpan - Vaisakhi Festival

     A baptised Sikh is required to carry a sword or dagger known as a Kirpan, more of a religious symbol than a weapon.

Sunday, 17 April 2011

Vaisakhi Festival - Bradford

     A parade was held today as part of the annual Vaisakhi celebrations.  A procession of several thousand people visits each of the six Gurdwaras or Sikh temples in the Bradford area.  At each temple the procession stops and the participants are offered food and drink.  The picture shows the head of the procession in Wakefield Road approaching the Gurdwara Guru Nanak Dev Ji. 

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Saltaire - World Heritage Weekend

     The village of Saltaire is celebrating world heritage day with special events in and around the village this weekend.  This demonstration of stone carving was held in Roberts Park by members of the West Riding Stonecarving Association.  I found it quite interesting to watch these craftsmen at work, the different types of stone apparently have their own distinctive qualities which make some types of stone harder to work with than others. It's also apparently a very therapeutic hobby, must give it a try sometime!

Friday, 15 April 2011

Mini Roundabout

     Police in nearby Ilkley have been handing out tickets for driving over the painted white circle of mini roundabouts.  So if you see one of these signs, make sure you drive around and not over the roundabout.
     The building in the background is the Midland Hotel in Forster Square, Bradford.  It was built by the Midland Railway Company between 1885 and 1890.  Famous guests that have stayed at the hotel include Laurel & Hardy, Paul Robeson, the Beatles and the Rolling Stones.

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Spotty Dog - Northgate

     I noticed this dog the other day, up on the third storey of an old building in Northgate in the city centre.  I have never noticed it before, probably because it is so high up.  The only piece of relevant information I can find is that there was once a Greyhound Inn in the street, and this dog looks a bit like a greyhound, but I still don't know why it is situated so high up.

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Makonde - Lister Park

     This bronze sculpture in Lister Park is by Halima Cassell and is named Makonde.  I have photographed it before in flat lighting but I prefer this version with the strong side lighting.  I had to crawl about on my hands and knees a bit to get the low angle , which meant funny looks from passers-by, but that doesn't bother me any more.

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Free Running

     I don't know if this is classed as 'free running' or 'parkour' or something else completely different.  The participants run towards, and then leap from the top of one of those concrete bollards, complete a mid-air somersault and then carry on running.  I don't think I will be trying it!

Monday, 11 April 2011

Bradford Butcher Bikers in Bingley

     I came across these two cyclists at the five rise locks in Bingley this morning. They are both butchers who took up cycling on retirement.  Phillip (on the left) had a shop in Thackley, which is on the outskirts of Bradford, and Paul had a shop in nearby Idle Village. They had ridden along the canal to Silsden, done a circuit of some of the green lanes around there before stopping off for pork pies on the return journey.  At a guess I'd say that's a round trip of maybe twenty five miles, and that's probably more than my son or daughter could manage!

Sunday, 10 April 2011

A Walk In The Park

     I went for a walk around Lister Park yesterday morning and came across these two couples.  I 'm assuming they've just got married, they were being filmed by a professional looking camera man and I didn't want to interrupt them.  Those outfits must have taken an awful lot of making!

Saturday, 9 April 2011

Military Helmet - Bolling Hall

     This is one of a number of replica military helmets which were on display when I visited Bolling Hall yesterday.  The Hall was very quiet, I think I was the only visitor, but occasionally there are special events such as Civil War re-enactments which really bring the place to life.

Friday, 8 April 2011

Bolling Hall

     Bolling Hall, which is now a museum, stands in its own garden about a mile out from the town centre, now surrounded by houses but originally built in woodland.  The oldest part of the building is the tower on the left which was built as a defensive pele tower in 1370, the rest of the building has been added to this structure over the centuries.  The hall played a part in the English Civil War when it was used by Royalists as a base to attack the town in 1643.  A ghost is said to have visited the Royalist commander on the eve of the siege asking him to 'pity poor Bradford' causing him to change his orders and not to 'kill all'.

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Manningham Lane

     This is Manningham Lane, one of the main routes into the city. The building in the centre is the old Yorkshire Penny Bank, to the right and just out of shot is one of those dreadful shed type retail parks, and on the left is the fairly modern and rather handsome Sovereign Healthcare Building.

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

J B Priestley Statue

     I was on my way to the library today and decided to stop and take a picture of this statue of Bradford author and broadcaster J B Priestley.  If someone had asked me how long the statue has been there I would have said ten, maybe fifteen years at the most.  After a quick read of the brass plaque on the rear of the statue I realised that it's been there for twenty five years, time flies.   Priestley drew on memories of Bradford in many of the works he wrote, but he is probably most famous for his wartime broadcasts by the BBC which drew an audience of sixteen million listeners.

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

New Market Place - Bradford

     This ornate street light in New Market Place has recently been reinstated with a new marble base and seating.  The brightly coloured plaques are the Coats of Arms of the cities that Bradford is twinned with.  They are the wool towns of Roubaix, Verviers and Monchengladbach and also the city of Skopje in the former Yugoslavia which was twinned with Bradford following an earthquake there in 1963.

Monday, 4 April 2011

Bandstand - Lister Park

     This is the first time I have managed to capture this scene with the daffodils out, I usually turn up at the park to find that they are already past their best or have been flattened by an overnight storm.  The restored bandstand is still used for concerts, there are a number planned for this summer, but no published details yet.
     If you look to the left of the picture you can see a stone balustrade at the top of the banking, I think this is all that remains of a temporary building and terrace that was part of a great exhibition held in the park in 1904.  The exhibition was opened by the Prince and Princess of Wales and attracted almost two and a half million visitors over the six months that it ran.  One of the attractions was a complete Somali village with around a hundred Somali villagers including their chief.  The Somalis were not keen on theYorkshire climate and spent much of their time huddled around oil stoves.  One of their party died during the visit and is buried in a Bradford Cemetery.

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Pedalos - Lister Park

     These are the Lister Park bright red pedalos.  I've always thought these little boats were a modern invention, but apparently there is a rough sketch of something similar amongst the drawings of Leonardo Da Vinci.  There's no proof that one was ever built, but you could say that it's a five hundred year old concept.

Saturday, 2 April 2011

Wooden Boats - Lister Park

     The sun came out this afternoon so I went for a stroll around Lister Park.  The park lake was fairly busy, with most of its red plastic pedalos out on the water. The park was constructed in the Victorian era and I think these older wooden boats would look just right on the lake, but nobody was using them,  maybe people just don't know how to row these days.

Friday, 1 April 2011

John Street - Bradford

     This is the Oastler Centre on John Street at the top end of town.  The Centre was formerly known as John Street Market and contains shops and market units selling a wide variety of goods from fruit and veg to second hand computers.  The building in the distance is the former Yorkshire Building Society, built in the 1970s, currently empty, and widely regarded as one of the ugliest buildings in the area.