Leeds United Stories, Vol. 1

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tct a—z 2015: abby dix-mason, adam nodwell, adam pope & adam smith

tct a—z 2015: abby dix-mason, adam nodwell, adam pope & adam smith


We loved the results from our first A—Z when we did this in 2014, so helped again by I Like Press, we set out to ask as many people as we could what has got them excited about living in Leeds in 2015.

Whether it’s big city-wide events or personal projects, everyone who replied to us was filled with enthusiasm for something – and reading them all made us pretty enthusiastic too.

We wanted to look further ahead than just this year, though, so our second question asked people to throw their imaginations into the future. A lot of the discussion about whether to bid to be European Capital of Culture in 2023 has used the city’s currents of creativity as evidence that Leeds would make a startling job of it, so we put it out there – with an unlimited budget and no constraints, what would you do?

We printed everybody’s answers in our special A—Z issue 21 in February, and over the coming weeks we’re putting all the answers to these two questions online:

01. What are you looking forward to in Leeds in 2015?

02. It’s the future, it’s 2023, and Leeds has won the right to be European Capital of Culture. You’ve been given an unlimited budget to put on an event for the city – what do you do?


— 2015 —

Leeds Young Film festival in the spring. Never ever think you’re too grown up to watch kids’ films. During LYFF me and my son Charlie have been known to spend entire days at Hyde Park Picture House watching back to back films from all over the world.

George Clinton, the granddaddy of funk, playing at the Leeds O2 in April. His music has been sampled more times than you’ve had hot dinners. Talking of food my tummy rumbles in appreciation every time I think about Leeds Feast at The Tetley in May.

In August the Carnival King And Queen Show will be a breathtaking feat of both imagination and engineering where you can expect sequins and feathers on a truly epic scale. In October the British Art Show opens at Leeds Art Gallery on the same weekend as Light Night – this is going to be a bonkersly busy night in the centre of Leeds.

And finally all the stuff we don’t know about yet – it’s what I love most about Leeds. We’re always getting one-off events added to the Leeds Inspired website that are a complete surprise – art exhibitions in pubs, film showings in community halls, poetry slams in cafés, gigs in empty shops – people are busy making new things happen all the time without a huge budget or a massive marketing campaign. These one off events really punch above their weight and are a really important part of Leeds’ identity.

— 2023 —

In 2023 I’d like to see a massive street art festival that uses big buildings, falling down walls, rusty gasometers and winding roads to create hundreds of beautiful landmarks across Leeds. The festival would feature the work of old-school street artists alongside traditional community murals; hand drawn sign paintings and fine art illustrations. Just imagine, you’d be able to give directions that said ‘turn left at the giant green cats in a flying saucer’ instead of ‘turn left at Armley gyratory’.


— 2015 —

I have a few gigs coming up this spring including Vision Fortune, The Lovely Eggs, Unwave, Bad Guys, Conan and Focus (yes, Focus!) – you might think that’s a completely mixed bag but I put on what I like because I am a grown man and I can do what I want. Bands I’m looking forward to seeing also include Earth, Krill, Deerhoof, Errors and Meatbodies. I’m also very excited that my own band Super Luxury will be releasing their debut album in March.

Come summertime I will be organising Fell Foot Sound up in the Lake District; a small independent festival with co promoters Nick Simcock (Oporto, Dead Young Records) and Harry Ridgway (High & Lonesome). Starting to get a few bits and pieces together to make it the best one yet.

— 2023 —

Speak to absolutely everyone I know and get them to put on a gig, get the whole city partying!


— 2015 —

Watching an attractive style of play under Leeds United head coach Neil Redfearn, as the squad develops into one which will finish comfortably in mid-table and then start next season challenging for promotion from The Championship. To do this I want to see the quality youngsters like Sam Byram, Lewis Cook and Alex Mowatt kept at the club and not sold to the Premier League as the club finally resolves its historic financial troubles.

— 2023 —

A redeveloped Elland Road, owned by the club, hosts the Champions League Final with boxer Josh Warrington defending his unbeaten record as the undisputed Featherweight champion of the world there on the same weekend. The story of United’s rise back to the Premier League to become major players in Europe is turned into a blockbusting British film shot and screened locally with The Kaiser Chiefs providing the sound track, and then put on stage at the WY Playhouse.


— 2015 —

I’m looking forward to radical change in order to rid the world of social injustice and food poverty.

— 2023 —

I would donate all the money to a children’s cancer and terminal disease unit, and organise a free event using solar powered BBQs, bicycle powered sound systems and smoothie makers, and bring people together from all walks of life to just be free and enjoy themselves, with little carbon negative impact, and zero waste.


The City Talking A—Z 2015 was made with help from: