Friday, 27 July 2012

Leeds ready to celebrate the London 2012 Olympic Games in style

Caption: The Millennium Square Live Site is ready for the London 2012 Olympic Games

Leeds will be offering up a feast of sporting action over the coming weeks as the city celebrates all the action at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

To mark the world’s greatest sporting event taking place in the UK, Millennium Square will be one of the focal points in Leeds as it has been designated as an official ‘London 2012 Live Site’ for the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games.

Beginning with the much-anticipated opening ceremony on Friday 27 July (tonight), the Leeds big screen will be showing all of the action and key moments from the Games live from 9am to 11pm each day between Saturday 28 July to Sunday 12 August in a specially-created public viewing arena.

Entry will be free and various seating options will cater for up to 300 people on a first-come first-served basis in two covered grandstands. Spectators will be able to watch BBC coverage from the Games every day which will include specially focusing on Leeds athletes when they are competing such as the men’s triathlon on Tuesday 7 August when homegrown stars Alistair and Jonathan Brownlee will be aiming for medal glory.

The Millennium Square Live Site will also be offering the chance for people to have a go themselves with special interactive sessions around swimming and the triathlon.

Running each day from 10am-4pm from Saturday 28 July to Monday 30 July, experts from British Swimming and the Amateur Swimming Association will be on hand to provide information and tips on how to get involved in swimming be it as a beginner or how to join a local swimming club or take part in other aquatic disciplines such as diving, water polo, synchronised swimming and disability swimming.

This will be followed from 9am-5pm each day from Saturday 4 to Tuesday 7 August by ‘Triathlon Live’ which will feature a specially-created swimming pool area along with a cycling and running challenge to offer a sample to anyone 18 and over of the demands of arguably the toughest event in the whole Games.

Leeds City Council-managed leisure centres across the city will also be getting into the Olympic spirit with a range of special offers. These include the chance to buy 12 sport and fitness activities for £20 in swimming, aqua aerobics, Bodyline gym sessions and fitness classes. There will also be adult swimming lessons on offer priced at £20 for 12 sessions.

Young people are also catered for with £1 taster sessions available in swimming, water polo, gymnastics, tennis, synchronised swimming and diving. For full details of all the available offers visit or call 0113 395 0001.

Leeds City Council executive member for leisure Councillor Adam Ogilvie said:

“After all the build-up the London 2012 Olympic Games is finally here so in Leeds we want it to be a huge celebration of sport and fitness, encouraging people of all ages to get behind our Team GB athletes and also be inspired by watching the world’s best in action and then having a go themselves.

“In Leeds we are very proud to have world-class sport and leisure facilities, and it would be great to see them full to bursting in the weeks to come with people keen to emulate the Olympic stars.”

For details of Leeds’ involvement in the Games, including a handy guide as to when each of the Leeds athletes will be competing, visit

Notes to editors:

Leeds is one of 22 towns and cities across the UK to have official ‘Live Sites’. The sites, run in partnership between London 2012, the BBC and local authorities, and supported by the National Lottery through the Olympic Lottery Distributor, partners BT and Lloyds TSB, and supporters Cisco and Cadbury, feature London 2012 branding and seating provided so crowds can watch the coverage in style.

Normal street cafe trading by surrounding businesses will be in operation within the Millennium Square Live Site arena for food and refreshments with a strict check 21 policy in place. Persons attending are also allowed to bring their own food and drink although strictly no glass and cans will be permitted. All persons 12 years and under must be accompanied by an adult (18 years and over).

For more information on swimming visit or triathlon go to

For more information on events in Millennium Square, call Leeds City Council’s events team on 0113 3950891 or email

The Yorkshire region’s activities around the London 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games are being co-ordinated by Yorkshire Gold which is supported by key stakeholders from across the region. For further information visit


For media enquiries please contact:
Roger Boyde,
Senior communications officer,
Leeds City Council, Tel 0113 247 5472

Get ready for a summer of song

"Top gospel choir leader Ken Burton, who is holding a workshop at Leeds Town Hall on 25 August."

"Young people from The Leeds Youth Opera, one of the many music groups for youngsters across the city."

Leeds will be alive with the sound of song this summer, with a whole host of singing opportunities for people of all ages.

With everything from Glee to Gospel Leeds City Council’s music service Artforms has something exciting to offer everyone this summer.

On Saturday 25 August there’s an unmissable opportunity for singers and aspiring singers of all ages and experience to sing with top gospel choir leader Ken Burton in Leeds Town Hall.

Ken is the principal conductor of the award winning London Adventist Chorale, and judge of the BBC TV programme Choir of the Year and Channel 4’s Gospel Singer of the Year competitions.

People can join his singing workshop at Leeds Town Hall on Saturday morning at 10am, and perform with a choir of hundreds at a concert that evening alongside world class choirs.

This event is part of the annual convention of the Association of British Choral Directors.

A Glee Club has been organised for young people aged 8 to14 who want to try out their singing and dancing skills and emulate their favourite TV stars. The Glee Club is to be held at Guiseley School from 1pm to 3pm on 29 and 30 July. Contact Katherine Robertshaw 07891 275 146 for details and to book.

Young people aged 9 to 16 can enjoy a Musical Theatre workshop involving three days of singing and performing songs from Wicked, Hairspray, Oliver, Bugsy Malone and Grease, at the Summer Music Camp on 29 to 31 August at the West Park Centre (LS16)

For people who want to make music and singing a more regular part of their lives Artforms has many opportunities available throughout the year, including choirs for all abilities.

Leeds also has nine music centres across the city with a variety of singing groups and vocal lessons to join which are suitable for people of all ages. More information on the city’s music centres can be found at;

City of Leeds Youth Music also has three choirs for young people aged 5 to 19, which meet weekly during term-time. For more information about these three youth choirs see;

For more details about all the above people can call 0113 230 4074 or email

For media enquiries, please contact:
Frances Bernstein, Music Centre Coordinator, Artforms, Leeds City Council, 077595 63848
Emma Whittell, Leeds City Council press office, on (0113) 2474713