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Blog: A rolling series of articles from our correspondents, wherever they are...

The Leeds Summit

LEEDS BUSINESS WEEK 2013
Posted by: Anj Handa, Fri 27th Sep, 2013 | 2:44pm

This morning, I attended the Leeds City Summit, a BBC Question Time-style debate with a panel of business and public sector leaders for a Q&A discussion on issues of relevance to the business community. The audience, which comprised local business owners, the voluntary and community sector, students and other interested parties, reflected the diversity of Leeds and the debate was lively.

Aside from the expected discussion on infrastructure and building developments, much of the debate focused on inequality in the city, in particular, the so-called 'North/South divide' in terms of health, skills and opportunity. Young people featured especially high on the agenda. According to panel Chair and CEO of ASDA, Andy Clarke, youth unemployment in the city stands at 20.8%, a rise of 9.4% compared to five years ago. In July of this year, 1,603 16-18 year olds were classed as NEET (not in Employment, Education or Training). The figure is higher still for 19-24 year olds, although it's harder to get exact numbers when young people fall out of the 'system'.

What we do know is that 30% of NEETs have depression and so it's not just their education that suffers, their health and confidence does too. According to panel Hilary Benn MP, 10% of children in his Leeds Central constituency live below the poverty line and 25% of adult constituents have no qualifications at all. They reside virtually next door to some of the most impressive buildings in the country, yet are living well below the breadline. What we need therefore, is not just to tell young people that they have a chance of finding work, but to actually help them to get it. We cannot further damage their self-esteem and aspiration by giving them an expectation but not presenting them with opportunity. Presented with these figures, how can we as residents and business in the city sit back and do nothing?

We also heard that cash donations to charities have been 20% less in recent years due to lower levels of disposable income, but as Gerald Jennings of Trinity developer, Land Securities rightly said, what we do have to offer is time and skills to mentor and support charities and the individuals that they support. Tom Riordan, CEO of Leeds City Council agreed with the point, but added that business engagement with the sector is fragmented and that a more coherent and collaborative offer from voluntary and community organisations would make it easier for businesses to get involved.

Sally Hill from Leeds MIND asked the panel a general question on wellbeing. As you may have seen in my earlier articles, I am passionate about raising awareness of mental health and it was heartening to hear some of the panelists' responses. Hilary Benn MP encouraged people to be more open and talk about their mental health. Tom Riordan made reference to how he was taken into foster care following his mother's ill health due to bipolar disorder. Andy Clarke responded about his meeting with the CEO of MIND following ASDA having to take a Halloween outfit of the shelves that many had found offensive. He added that ASDA's donation to MIND was the first step and that the incident had made him realise the responsibility that businesses have in overcoming stigma by the messages they send out through their products and services.

Overall, the message that came through clearly was that although Leeds has had its share of successes, it cannot become complacent and that those who are able can and should support those that are less able. Do you have ideas on how we can address some of these issues? How can you help?
Fri 27th Sep, 2013 | 2:44pmmore...

Leeds Tweet Meet

LEEDS BUSINESS WEEK 2013
Posted by: Cassandra Oliver, Fri 27th Sep, 2013 | 10:11am

The Tweet Meet is a regular event aimed at promoting the benefits of Twitter for business. The topic for September's meet was Protecting your online reputation - how to monitor your reputation on Twitter and what to do when the worst happens.

The format of the event was a panel discussion, in which local experts were interviewed "Parkinson style" by the host, radio and digital producer Chris Marsden.

Panellists

Stacey Stothard - Corporate Communications Manager, Skipton Building Society
Jo Swann - Chocolate PR
Michael Ham - Social Media Consultant
Charlotte Booth - Social Media Editor, The Yorkshire Times

The panel experts represented all angles of the issue of online business reputation, from PR and Press to in-house corporate communications and Social Media.

The event host addressed specific questions to each panel member then took questions from the floor, several of which had been tweeted using the event hashtag.

Some familiar faces from the Leeds Twittersphere were in attendance, as ever it's good to put names to faces.

I especially liked that the host made the effort to name-check people in the room who were tweeting, and the format lent itself well to audience participation.

An enjoyable and useful event, I'll definitely attend another Tweet Meet in future.

Cassandra Oliver is Marketing Director at Web-Translations, helping businesses to trade internationally online.
www.web-translations.co.uk
@WebTranslations
Fri 27th Sep, 2013 | 10:11ammore...

Barclays/UKTI - Taking Your Business Global

LEEDS BUSINESS WEEK 2013
Posted by: Cassandra Oliver, Fri 27th Sep, 2013 | 10:08am

As a localisation professional, this event caught my eye, and I was keen to hear about recent developments in international banking services and the support available from UKTI.

Delivered by Barclays International Channel Manager Amir Aktar, the presentation introduced ways in which both UKTI and Barclays can support UK exporters, and included some useful practical tips, including ways of reducing your financial risk when both importing and exporting products.

Amir explained how different terms can create a win-win between the supplier and client, and together with UKTI International Trade Advisor Donna Prior addressed audience queries on whether it is better to invoice an overseas client in Sterling or their local currency, and what funding is available to support trips overseas such as trade shows and market visits.

This seminar was an informative overview of the issues faced by first-time exporters and the many benefits of international trade, combined with plenty of support resources to help businesses on their export route to market.

Definitely an hour well-spent.

Cassandra Oliver is Marketing Director at Web-Translations, helping businesses to trade internationally online.
www.web-translations.co.uk | 0113 8150460 | @WebTranslations
Fri 27th Sep, 2013 | 10:08ammore...

Glorious Yorkshire Food

LEEDS BUSINESS WEEK 2013
Posted by: Cassandra Oliver, Fri 27th Sep, 2013 | 10:02am

Although I'd ventured into Trinity on several occasions to shop and eat, and been to Cielo Blanco, Angelica bar, and the Everyman cinema, I'd not eaten at Crafthouse, and was as curious as any other local foodie to see the restaurant. Naturally enough, when I saw this event as part of Leeds Business Week I signed-up immediately.

On arrival I was led into the stunning dining area, boasting excellent views across the Leeds skyline on both sides. There's also a spacious outdoor terrace.

Executive chef Lee Bennett introduced the range of ingredients they use at Crafthouse, stood behind a display of fresh meat, vegetables and fish - so fresh in fact that one of the lobsters was already making a bid for escape while we gathered to listen to Lee's talk!

We were given a taste of some of the menu highlights, including smoked salmon from Staal Smokehouse in Beverley, and melt-in-the-mouth rump steak cooked over charcoal in the restaurant's Josper grill. The delicious canapés were washed down with specially selected beers from Saltaire and Rudgate breweries.

Lee's enthusiasm and passion for locally-sourced seasonal produce and supporting small, specialised suppliers is really infectious, and I'd definitely recommend treating yourself to a visit to sample what Crafthouse's menu has in store this autumn.

I can still taste that steak...

Cassandra Oliver is Marketing Director at Web-Translations, helping businesses to trade internationally online.
www.web-translations.co.uk | 0113 8150460 | @WebTranslations
Fri 27th Sep, 2013 | 10:02ammore...

Electric Swing Circus

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Olivia Bell, Thu 5th Sep, 2013 | 11:35am
Thanks to Electric Swing Circus for this interview just before taking the stage at Bingley Live:


Thu 5th Sep, 2013 | 11:35ammore...

The Struts

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Yorkshire Times, Wed 4th Sep, 2013 | 12:43pm
The Yorkshire Times meets The Struts
The Yorkshire Times meets The Struts
The Struts caused a stir at Bingley Music Live. Everyone was talking about them.

The Yorkshire Times was lucky enough to get an interview with the band after their performance and was surprised to find out, despite how amazing they were on stage, that a few of the band members including lead singer, Luke, were really ill.

The indie rock band, formed in Derby in 2009 and signed to Gary Barlow's record label, performed like the were the headline act on the main stage - and we're pretty sure it won't be too long before they are.

Stay tuned for their video interview, to be uploaded soon....
Wed 4th Sep, 2013 | 12:43pmmore...

Bingley Music Live 2013 ends on a high!

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Yorkshire Times, Mon 2nd Sep, 2013 | 2:42pm
Picture taken by Daniel Belcher, Creative and Marketing
Picture taken by Daniel Belcher, Creative and Marketing
So another year under the belt of Bingley Festival. Bingley Music Live, drew to a fabulous close last night, under dramatic skies, which couldn't have been scripted better. The entire weekend had so much going for it, the atmosphere, the organisation and the music, all were of the highest order and this growing annual event will no doubt be penciled in peoples 2014 diaries come Christmas.

Picture taken by Graham Clark
Picture taken by Graham Clark
There are many acts to talk about, from headliners down, but the show was truly made by the final set on the main stage. Chic and Nile Rodgers maybe music shaped over 30 years ago, but it was shaking the place with hit after hit, Madonna, Sister Sledge, and Chic themselves - all in the hands of the man himself Nile. As someone tweeted - The only man on the planet who can look cool in a white suit.

Nile Rodgers taken by Graham Clark
Nile Rodgers taken by Graham Clark
As this writer stood feet away from the man - as a group were invited on stage for the last tracks, I found myself wondering, there can be no greater job than uplifting so many people in one place at the same time. Only 362 days to go.

Post by Daniel Belcher
Mon 2nd Sep, 2013 | 2:42pmmore...

Pictures over the weekend

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Graham Clark, Mon 2nd Sep, 2013 | 2:40pm






Mon 2nd Sep, 2013 | 2:40pmmore...

BINGLEY LIVE - SUNDAY

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Graham Clark, Mon 2nd Sep, 2013 | 2:26pm
Katy B
Katy B
The theme of the last day at Bingley Music Live was Pirate Day with quite a few revellers entering into the spirit and dressing up as pirates!

Bringing some old school vibes with a modern twist to Bingley Live, Katy B arrived on stage with her two dancers and DJ.

Katy B
Katy B
She might look a little larger than I seem to remember but she worked the crowd well. She introduced her new single 5am and informed the crowd that she was filming the video for the track the next day.


She told the crowd that they were a "sick audience" - to the uninitiated that is urban speak for being rather good. It was her last single What Love is Made Of which showed that there is some depth to her material. Lights On, her second single also sets her apart from her peers and got the crowd jumping.

It was appropriate to see another Yorkshire act on the main stage again, this time it was the turn of Wakefield's The Cribs. Looking more like a New York garage band than from down the M1, the band had even their own backdrop which not many acts had at Bingley Live.

Twins, Gary and Ryan Jarman took turns at vocal duties whilst the crowd took over singing duties during the single Men's Needs. Gary said "that it was great to be playing in Yorkshire" and he sounded like he meant it too. In a powerful energetic performance the band won over my new fans amongst the audience.
Mon 2nd Sep, 2013 | 2:26pmmore...

Summercamp

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Claire Woof, Mon 2nd Sep, 2013 | 2:09pm
Formed in 2009 it was great to see a true Indie band perform at BML. Their albums from the Moshi Moshi label, Welcome To Condale, 2011, and the new Summer Camp (released in 8 days!) provide a reflection into those years of teenage angst with lyrics written by vocalist Elizabeth Sankey.

Considering the band started almost by accident its been great to see them receive accolades such as a track eAf Listed on BBC6 music and now named in the top 50 tracks of the year in NME Magazine.

The band looked and sounded great at Bingley, their new album is 110% worth a listen!
Mon 2nd Sep, 2013 | 2:09pmmore...

Pictures from Saturday at Bingley Music Live

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Graham Clark, Sun 1st Sep, 2013 | 10:53am









Sun 1st Sep, 2013 | 10:53ammore...

The Virgin Marys

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Claire Woof, Sun 1st Sep, 2013 | 10:41am
Hailing from the sunny town on Macclesfield, The Virgin Mary's set Bingley alive with rock and roll!

Having toured with Slash, Feeder and Ash it was great to see them come to BML ready to give it their all. In the touring process they have featured on BBC Breakfast, scored an iTunes single of the week both in the UK and US and had a track featured on Rockband 3......Not bad for a band that only formed in 2006 and didnt play at Download until 2010!

Tracks such as 'dead mans shoes' sent the crowd wild with its blend of Brit grunge and 1970's rock.

Having listened to their debut album 'king of conflict' Im not surprised to see it put forward for the for Best New Album in this years Classic Rock Awards, if I was you, Id give it a listen and a vote!
Sun 1st Sep, 2013 | 10:41ammore...

BINGLEY MUSIC LIVE - SATURDAY

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Graham Clark, Sun 1st Sep, 2013 | 10:31am
The Struts
The Struts
Appearing on the second stage, new UK band, The Struts played as if they were headliners. The band signed to Gary Barlow's record label and look and sound like they are destined for the big time. Luke, the lead singer has all the mannerisms of Freddie Mercury and is a natural on stage.

I Just Know, a single from last year, takes its cue from Led Zeppelin, whilst She Makes Me Feel Like sounds like a big hit. As the title of one of the tracks performed tonight goes, Put Your Money on Me, this is an act I would out my money on to be a big success.

Tinchy Stryder
Tinchy Stryder
Tinchy Stryder appeared on the main stage with just himself and a DJ. The crowd were very enthusiastic with a huge mosh pit developing at one point. He had the audience on his side as he chanted "Yorkshire,Yorkshire" to them, naturally the response was louder than his.

Off the Record, the track which featured Calvin Harris received the best response and he seemed to be taken back with the good reception he received.

The Fratellis seem to have been away for a long time but their energetic songs soon made the crowd move. They do not say much in between songs preferring to let the music do the talking. They debuted some new songs off their new album, We Need Medicine, out in October but it was their best known track Chelsea Dagger that got everyone singing along.

Tonight's headliners Primal Scream are another act who has been off the radar for a while. They opened up their set with 2013, a former single and also taken off their comeback album from May this year, More Light.

The set dipped a little during the first half but soon got back up to speed with Come Together and closing number Rocks Off. A diverse set of acts tonight but that is what makes Bingley Music Live special; there is something for every musical taste.
Sun 1st Sep, 2013 | 10:31ammore...

Natasha Haws

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Olivia Bell, Sat 31st Aug, 2013 | 11:20pm

BML's moto, Big heart Big sound, really came true with Natasha Haws from South Shields. She put on an amazing performance at Bingley Music Live. At 19 years old, she gripped the audience with her strong vocals and down-to-earth nature. The audience immediately warmed to her and The Yorkshire Times was lucky enough to get an interview with the band to find out what their plans are.
Natasha Haws playing at Bingley Music Live
Natasha Haws playing at Bingley Music Live


Here's our interview with Natasha:


Sat 31st Aug, 2013 | 11:20pmmore...

Bingley Music Live

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Yorkshire Times, Sat 31st Aug, 2013 | 1:19pm
Picture by Daniel Belcher - Creative and Marketing
Picture by Daniel Belcher - Creative and Marketing
Sat 31st Aug, 2013 | 1:19pmmore...

Bingley Music Live pictures

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Yorkshire Times, Sat 31st Aug, 2013 | 12:10pm
Taken by Daniel Belcher - Creative and Marketing
Taken by Daniel Belcher - Creative and Marketing


Taken by Daniel Belcher - Creative and Marketing
Taken by Daniel Belcher - Creative and Marketing
Sat 31st Aug, 2013 | 12:10pmmore...

Dave McPherson

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Claire Woof, Sat 31st Aug, 2013 | 11:17am
During some much needed down time from the alternative metal tour scene Dave McPherson started to write his own solo material as early as 2004. Having heard about 'The Good People Movement: 365' - the huge task of writing and recording a song every day of the year I was eager to see what this hard working and talented song writer would offer on stage. The pledge in itself is a test, but when you consider that he will do this during the year when his second solo album is released and toured, you can really comprehend that "hard work" is certainly a term that will ring home for many of his fans.

What's great about listening to Dave is that he doesn't fall into the trap that other artists have done and has drawn a line between band and solo material, his music has folky undertones delivered with a lot of energy and passion for songwriting.

McPhersons performance at BML was full of eagerly excited new listeners and people that have followed him for a while, his execution ensured that neither were disappointed in what they heard.

His set list included old and new material and having done over two hundred gigs in 2012 Im hoping to see a lot more of him in 2013.
Sat 31st Aug, 2013 | 11:17ammore...

Opening Night Pictures

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Yorkshire Times, Sat 31st Aug, 2013 | 12:19am
The start of the opening night - Claire Woof
The start of the opening night - Claire Woof


Opening Night - Claire Woof
Opening Night - Claire Woof


Human League by Graham Clark
Human League by Graham Clark


Neville Staples by Graham Clark
Neville Staples by Graham Clark


Human League - Charlotte Booth
Human League - Charlotte Booth


Sat 31st Aug, 2013 | 12:19ammore...

The Dunwells

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Olivia Bell, Sat 31st Aug, 2013 | 12:00am
The Dunwells with the Yorkshire Times BML team
The Dunwells with the Yorkshire Times BML team
Tonight we met the amazing band, The Dunwells, from Pudsey, Yorkshire.

Founded in 2009 by brothers Joseph and David Dunwell, the band has grown from playing at local gigs to touring the US and the UK after being spotted by American label Playing in Traffic. They recorded a debut album "Follow The Road" and from there things have only got better.

The US proved a great hit for the band but, still down to Earth, they were just as excited to play at Bingley Music Live.

They performed at BML with passion and enthusiasm and there was a great atmosphere among the audience. It was great to see local talent doing so well! These really are a band to watch and we have no doubt that they are going far!
Sat 31st Aug, 2013 | 12:00ammore...

Opening night at Bingley Music Festival

BINGLEY LIVE 2013
Posted by: Graham Clark, Fri 30th Aug, 2013 | 11:49pm
Human League
Human League
This year's three-day festival is a near sell out but a few weekend and day tickets are still available at the gates so it is not too late if you want to join in the fun.

On the main stage on Friday night rockabilly three piece, Katmen may have arrived on stage late due to traffic problems on the A1 but their curtailed set was certainly worth waiting for, Featuring a member of Imelda May's band (Darrel Higham) and former drummer of The Stray Cats Slim Jim Phantom the 3 piece warmed the crowd up with their rockabilly meets The Mavericks type tracks.

Introducing their new single, Ain't That Tough, Higham dedicated the song "to all the members of the audience who remember vinyl" as the single is going to be released on vinyl which seems to be making a comeback.

The band finished off their set with the old Stray Cats hit, Rock This Town. The band had certainly rocked Bingley tonight.

One of the original rude boys Neville Staples now has his own band, The Neville Staple Band who play all the old tracks of his former band, The Specials. Staples certainly kept the party going during his set, of course when you have songs at your disposal such as A Message to Rudy and Ghost Town it does make things a little easier! He still has the energy and he worked the audience into frenzy. Still special and still a force to be reckoned with.

The influence the Human League on the current music scene stretches from La Roux to Calvin Harris. The Yorkshire outfit were an inspired choice to close the first night of the event in this fine Yorkshire setting.

Playing a greatest hits set, lead singer Phil Oakey strolled on to the stage wearing a long coat and sun glasses! Susan Sulley still looks as thin as ever dressed for a night on the town whilst fellow singer Joanne Catherall at times looked like she was just going through the motions. Mirror Man kicked things off whilst Sound of the Crowd still sounds as good as it did back in the day. Of course it was Don't You Want Me Baby that drew the biggest response from the audience, with the track starting off as an instrumental whilst the audience sang the words loudly. Together in Electric Dreams closed their set in what was another electrifying experience from the band.

With 2 more days to go it looks like Bingley is certainly going to be alive over the next two days.
Fri 30th Aug, 2013 | 11:49pmmore...
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