Friday, 2 August 2013

Leeds Gymnastics Club flying high in post-London 2012 boom

The Leeds Gymnastics Club elite senior gymnasts put on a display as part of the one-year anniversary celebrations of the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Previously operated by the council and hindered by not having a home of their own, in January 2012 the Leeds Gymnastics Training Scheme was transferred to the club to run, with backing from Leeds City Council and British Gymnastics to create a new permanent base in Seacroft.

Since making the change the club has gone from having approximately 200 members in April 2012 to now boasting over a thousand a year later.

Above are a selection of images from their training session:

Top two images - Matthew Firth
Third image - Jess Nicholson

The last three images are of 17-year-old Nile Wilson from Pudsey, who represented Great Britain at this year’s European Youth Olympics last month and marked himself out as a star of the future by returning home with three golds and one silver medal.

In the final image Nile is pictured with Leeds City Council executive member for leisure and skills Councillor Lucinda Yeadon.


For media enquiries please contact:
Roger Boyde,
Leeds City Council press office,
Tel 0113 247 5472

Leeds health and social care leaders attend dementia-awareness session

Senior National Health Service and social care leaders in Leeds were given an insight into the issues surrounding dementia at an awareness session last week.

Members of the council’s health and wellbeing board undertook training run by the Alzheimer’s Society to find out more about what it is like to live with dementia and how as a city Leeds can create a dementia friendly society.

A combination of workshops and scenarios were undertaken to aid the board in understanding issues surrounding dementia in Leeds, the stigma attached to the condition, and the experiences of somebody living with dementia.

At the end of the session the board agreed to become ‘dementia friends’, further reinforcing the commitment made in May when the members formally endorsed the Leeds ‘Living Well with Dementia’ strategy as part of the aim for Leeds to become a dementia-friendly city.

One in three people over 65 will develop dementia, and currently 8,500 people are living with the condition in Leeds, with this figure predicted to rise by 40 per cent in the next 15 years.

Dementia is not a natural part of ageing, but is caused by diseases of the brain affecting men and women, and is seen through symptoms such as memory loss, mood changes and communication problems. The risk of developing dementia increases with age, although a healthy diet and lifestyle may help protect against the condition.

Chair of Leeds City Council’s health and wellbeing board Councillor Lisa Mulherin said:

“This was an important session for board members to increase their awareness of this issue. We discussed dementia both in the context of our health and social care leadership roles and also in our own personal experiences, with many of the board testifying to having a close friend or family member with dementia.

“I would highly recommend the training to any public-facing organisation and hope that businesses as well as public sector organisations across the city will take up this opportunity to help to make Leeds a dementia friendly city.

“In Leeds we believe that dementia is everybody’s business. As a society we need to ask, listen, support and respect each other as part of the broader vision of being the best city for health and wellbeing. I’m delighted that we have now agreed to roll out this awareness across each organisation’s leadership teams.”

For information on dementia visit or


For media enquiries please contact:
Roger Boyde,
Leeds City Council press office,
Tel 0113 247 5472

Classical Fantasia set to light up the abbey

Following a memorable evening at Temple Newsam Park last month for Opera in the Park, tickets are now available for another popular concert in the city’s calendar, Classical Fantasia.

Organised by Leeds City Council, this year’s event will again take place at Kirkstall Abbey on Saturday 7 September with gates scheduled to open from 6pm. The main performance will begin from approximately 8pm.

Set in the grounds of the 12th century abbey, the open-air classical music performance will feature a wide-range of fantasy-inspired music to delight the crowd. As part of the show, the spectacular ruins of the abbey will again be illuminated and also include a fantastic firework finale.

This year the music will be performed by the Manchester Camerata - one of the UK’s leading chamber orchestras with the event once again supported by media partners Magic 828 and the Yorkshire Evening Post.

Tickets are available to purchase now online at or in person / by telephone from City Centre Box Office in The Carriageworks on Millennium Square (0113 224 3801) and Leeds Visitor Centre at Leeds Train Station (0113 242 5242). Tickets will also be available to purchase in person only from the Abbey House Museum.

Tickets are priced at £8 for LEEDSCard, Leeds Active and Leeds Library Card holders, £6.50 for LEEDSCard Extra holders and £5 for Breezecard holders. General admission is £10 and there is also a special discount for groups of friends and family between 5 – 10 people for £7 per person. Advanced car parking tickets will also be available to purchase at £5 per vehicle.

Councillor Lucinda Yeadon, Leeds City Council’s executive member for leisure and skills, said:

"Set in the historic and spectacular grounds of Kirkstall Abbey, Classical Fantasia promises to be another evening of great entertainment.

"Seeing the abbey illuminated really is something special, and with the now traditional firework finale set to follow the great music on offer, this is an event not to be missed."

For further details visit or contact Leeds City Council’s events team on 0113 396 0891 or by email at

Notes to editors:

A booking / transaction fee will apply to bookings made online or by telephone.

For media enquiries, please contact;
Colin Dickinson, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 39 51578