the city talking: leeds — issue 33Back
The City Talking
Issue 33 of The City Talking is out in Leeds now, and available free inside Friday’s edition of the Yorkshire Evening Post.
Back when we did our first A—Z, we introduced it by acknowledging that we weren’t sure it would work.
Would people in Leeds confess to being excited about anything? We have a dour public image to maintain, and a lot of respect for misery- guts traditions.
We got our answer when what we thought would be a four-page feature became a twelve-page pullout; followed by an entire issue at the start of 2015, and another, right now, looking forward to 2016.
We have managed to fit everybody’s answers into our new issue, but only just, and only because we halved the number of questions we asked. By our rough reckoning, there are twice as many people in these pages as we had last year.
We actually asked as many people again as you’ll see in the paper, so it’s a mixture of relief that not everybody replied (holidays in January!), and frustration that we can’t make this thing even bigger, cast the net even wider, be more representative.
Every year, though, we find new people to talk to, although in some cases they’ve been around for years and are only new to us. That’s one of the functions of the A—Z to us; people tell us about other people,
so next year we can talk to more people we didn’t know before.
This year we’ve also added views from our new friends in Manchester and Sheffield, where we produced new editions of The City Talking last year, because they’re short trips and they’re exciting places.
One of the new gangs to mingle in is the tech scene in Leeds, a staggeringly creative bunch whose work is beginning to break beyond streams of green-text code on black monitor screens, to impact on apps for your phone, virtual reality headsets for your face, innovative data-led work in healthcare.
Much of the excitement this year focuses on older fashions in Leeds, mixed with the new. In short, everybody is talking about Kirkgate. Whether that’s the results of the refurbishment of the Market, the opening of the Art Hostel from East Street Arts, the renovation of its shops, or the John Lewis effect rippling around George Street, Leeds’ oldest street — where 2015 was marked by the fire that destroyed Hill’s Furniture — is the focus of Leeds’ newest hopes.
There’s plenty more, and every year that we do this, we get gladder about that.
The City Talking: Leeds issue 33 is free inside the Yorkshire Evening Post this Friday February 18th, and in selected stockists across the city.