Monday, 30 April 2012

Maypole Dancing - Bradford Urban Garden

May Day celebrations were underway in the Bradford Urban Garden on Saturday with a curious combination of Yoga, Maypole Dancing and live music including punk rock, there will be more on the punk rock tomorrow.

Sunday, 29 April 2012

International Workers Day

International Workers Day was marked in Bradford yesterday by a minutes silence for those killed in  accidents at work.  There were also speeches, the laying of wreaths, and a short play.  The gathering took place in the Memorial Garden which is on the opposite side of City Hall to Centenary Square and the mirror pool, the picture shows the performers in full flow.

Saturday, 28 April 2012

A Sandwich And A Cup Of Tea

Yesterday was the first time out on the bike this year, just a short ride along the Leeds-Liverpool canal, a sandwich and a cup of tea and then back home again.  The stretch of canal in the picture is just beyond Apperley Bridge in the Leeds direction, and the bike, well that's my 'canal' bike, mudguards, prop stand and a big old fashioned canvas saddlebag.  And what do I need a big old fashioned saddlebag for?  For my big old fashioned flask of tea and sandwiches of course.

Friday, 27 April 2012


This piper turned a few heads last Saturday at the St George's Day celebrations, I don't think those kids are really bagpipe fans though.

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Smoke On The Water

I'm not sure if I like this picture or not, it's a reflection of the Odeon Cinema in the mirror pool.  It was one of those really flat, grey days, the picture is actually in colour, so you can tell how flat and how grey it was. The smoke effect is from vents in the mirror pool, a kind of vapour that floats across the water.  Maybe I should have tinted the picture Deep Purple to make it more interesting, any comments welcome, negative or positive.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Horse-Drawn Boat - Saltaire

This horse-drawn boat was making its way along the Leeds-Liverpool canal at the weekend as part of the Saltaire World Heritage Site celebrations.  The lady in the picture gave a harnessing demonstration and a little talk about the boat and the horse before setting off.  The boat (which you can't see very well in this picture) is known as a fly boat, shorter, lighter and with a more restricted cargo area than the larger boats.  It would have travelled 24 hours a day with the horses being changed at intervals to give a quicker delivery time.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Three Lovely Ladies

I bumped into these three lovely ladies at the St George's Day celebrations on Saturday. I have photographed them before and they actually remember me, I think it's because I sent them a picture last time.  They are photographed quite a lot but don't often get to see the pictures

Monday, 23 April 2012

Mark Kermode and the Dodge Brothers - National Media Museum

Film critic and musician Mark Kermode paid a visit to the the National Media Museum on Saturday.  The museum is currently hosting the 18th Bradford International Film Festival and  Mark and his band the Dodge Brothers were to provide the soundtrack to a silent film which was to be shown later in the day. Apparently actor Ray Winstone was also in the building and I just managed to miss the photo opportunity by five minutes.  Mark is apparently no stranger to the city of Bradford.  In his student days at Manchester University he would sometimes catch a train to Bradford to busk on the city streets.

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Scouts - St George's Day Parade

Hundreds of scouts took part in a St George's day parade in the centre of Bradford this morning.  Unfortunately there was a very heavy shower as the youngsters gathered in Centenary Square for the start of the annual event.  The rain didn't seem to dampen the spirits of the participants though, there were still plenty of happy faces as the procession made its way to Bradford Cathedral.

Saturday, 21 April 2012

St Georges Day Celebrations - City Park

Street Theatre, music and fire were part of the entertainment at this years St George's Day celebrations in the new City Park and mirror pool in the centre of Bradford.  The performers kept the mainly young audience well entertained throughout the afternoon, the act involving fire was my favourite though.  I don't know if it's the element of danger, or the fact that you can feel the heat, or possibly that I have never really grown up, but I just love fire breathing acts.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Vaisakhi Parade - Wakefield Road

Some of the major routes into Bradford were closed temporarily to allow the Vaisakhi parade to pass.

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Tea Break

Workers take a break and watch the Vaisakhi parade pass by.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Vaisakhi 2012 - Gurdwara Guru Nanak Dev Ji

Prayers outside of the Gurdwara Nanak Dev Ji during the Vaisakhi parade on Sunday.

Monday, 16 April 2012

Vaisakhi 2012 - Guru Ravidass Bhawan Gurdwara

The Vaisakhi parade visits each Sikh temple in turn, prayers are said and hot food is served to the thousands taking part.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Vaisakhi Festival - 2012

Members of the Sikh religion celebrated the important festival of Vaisakhi today with a large procession which visited each of the six Gurdwaras or Sikh temples in the Bradford area. The festival originates in the Punjab region where it marks the first harvest of the year.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Giant Bird

This is probably why we are not supposed to feed the pigeons in the town centre. I don't know whether it's actually meant to be a bird or a flying reptile, it was part of the entertainment at the mirror pool opening the other week.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Helium Balloons

Helium balloons on top of the pavilion at the mirror pool opening the other week. I didn't notice at the time, but that cameraman looks really unenthusiastic.

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Chicken Coup - Mind The Gap

These chickens were a big hit at the mirror pool opening the other week. Mind the Gap is an award-winning theatre company that works with disabled and non-disabled artists as equals.

Monday, 9 April 2012

Silsden Sewer Rats Easter Egg Run 2012

I quite like going to these motorcycle events, there is something about a mass ride out of bikes, the noise, the petrol fumes and all that glinting chrome work. The riders leave Silsden on this annual event to deliver Easter eggs to the children's ward of a local hospital and raise a little money for charity on the way, so it's all in a good cause.

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Easter Morning at the Chevin Cross

A crowd of worshippers gathered at this wooden cross this morning for a 7 AM service. The cross is erected each year at Easter on Otley Chevin, a viewpoint which overlooks the Wharfe valley. The cross stands 32 ft high and is around 16 ft wide and is made from timber salvaged from the IRA bombing of Manchester on 15th June 1996, there were no fatalities but 212 people were injured, some of them seriously.

Saturday, 7 April 2012

Panda Bowmen - Longbow Tournament

Archery as a hobby goes back quite a long way, it was a favourite hobby of Queen Elizabeth I and it still has its followers today. Traditional longbow archers from West Yorkshire and beyond gathered at Bramhope this morning for a longbow tournament organised by Panda Bowmen. The modern longbow is usually made from three different wood types bonded together and requires quite a bit of practise and skill to shoot accurately, it is basically a centuries old design without any kind of sighting aid. The competitors do have one sighting aid though, said to improve accuracy, a traditional glass of sherry part way through the shoot!

Friday, 6 April 2012

Post Box

Luckily the incredibly warm weather last week coincided with a three day break my wife and I spent in the Peak District. The post box is in the estate village of Tissington in the White Peak area, probably more famous for its wells and well dressing ceremonies than post boxes.

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Mechanical Trees

I recently posted a picture of these stainless steel tubes which sit on top of the pavilion building at the new City Park. At the time I thought they were purely an artwork, but apparently they serve a dual purpose. The tubes represent mechanical trees, the perforations at the top are derived from a pixelated image of the sessile oak trees which sit alongside, and the main purpose of the tubes, exhaust vents for the public toilets beneath! My thanks to James at Sturgeon North for the information.

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Hand Made In Bradford

Bradford has a new exhibition space in the town centre created by arts group Fabric. The former record store has a ground floor displaying gift items hand made by local artists, upstairs there is a large gallery area and a picnic parlour. The picnic area is aimed mainly at over 50's who can drop in for a chat with friends and bring their own sandwiches if they wish.

The picture shows local photographer Tim Smith ( setting up a publicity shot outside of the new 'Hand Made In Bradford' premises. In the picture are director of Fabric Gideon Seymour, Ann Rutherford, councillor David Greene and another member of Fabric (unfortunately I can't remember his name). My thanks to Tim Smith for allowing me to take photographs.

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Bradford Mirror Pool - Steam?

Mirror pool steam vents, or is it steam? It doesn't seem to be hot. Whatever it is the kids like it!

Monday, 2 April 2012

Bradford Mirror Pool - Giant Lobsters

Giant Red Lobsters at the mirror pool opening, street theatre from arts company Artizani.

Sunday, 1 April 2012

BRAiD March

A group of around thirty protesters marched from Buck Lane to Shipley Town Hall yesterday morning to hand in a letter highlighting concerns about an area of land adjoining Buck Lane. The agricultural land is the proposed site of a multi-million pound business park, but the chairman of BRAiD (Baildon Residents against Inappropriate Development) Dr Steven Walker firmly believes that the land should remain as a green space for the benefit of the local community and the development should be located on one of the numerous brown field sites in the area.

I have to admit that I have a personal interest, the land is not far from where I live and I regularly walk the footpath alongside the river, more often than not spotting some of the wildlife in the area, deer, kingfisher, dragonfly, or on the occasion of Saturday morning a heron standing in the river. I would hate to see this riverside green space covered in concrete.