Good news from Bradford. Really. There is. You just need to know where to look.

Bradford has just been voted as emerging destination of the year by the Luxury Travel Guide, recognising our UNESCO City of Film status, Saltaire, Haworth and the Worth Valley Railway as special places to visit. Bradford’s stunning Wool Exchange has been named one of the 15 most beautiful bookshops in the world. And last month saw the city centre host three major events: the Bradford, Science and Literature Festivals attracting big crowds and showing the city at its best.

This is very good news and we should all be celebrating, well done to the organisers who made it happen.

Bradford Literature Festival 2018

Yes, I know there was no football shown in Centenary Square for the World Cup, yes Bradford has serious economic problems which desperately need to be resolved and the Council is coping with long years of government cuts, and yes some events could be better publicised. But despite the problems, we need to start being a bit more positive, or constructive at the very least. If you remember people were very critical of the mirror pool when it was first proposed and has since been proved a huge success.


The Bradford Literature Festival, for example, is establishing itself as a major cultural event in the north after only four years. If you think that a literature festival is not for you with contributors from Akala, Frank Bruno, Susie Quattro, Jeanette Winterson and lots of free events for kids, there was a bit of something for everyone. If you didn’t go to any of the talks, I will be writing up the best bits from the working class authors I saw when I find the words to express how great I thought they were.

The Bradford Festival and Science Festival brought music, robots, experiments, hands-on activities, food and drink if that is more to your taste.


There’s been lots of talk about wanting our country or culture ‘back’ but I’m not sure what that means or if the people who say it really know either. If they mean morris dancing, maypoles, brass bands, maybe a pie and pea festival then I’m happy to help anyone organise that. In the meantime, our Bradfordian propensity to moan is legendary. I am more than happy with a good moan and a grim up north attitude myself, but even I am being overwhelmed by the negativity. If we want to make our city great again, then let’s do something about it.

Get yourself out to some of the events going on in August (listed below). Meet some people. People are far nicer in real life than behind the anonymity of their phones. But we need to get out and about to remember this. If the city centre is half empty, then we need to put our money where our moaning mouths are: Oastler market has good butchers, spice stalls, green grocers and is super cheap, Tiffin coffee shop is a great addition to the city centre, Waterstones is acknowledged as one of the most beautiful shops in the world and North Parade has a range of independent bars fit for any hipster.

With this in mind, I’ve put together a list of some of the nicest events in and around Bradford over the summer holidays. Move away from the computer and let’s make the most of what our city has to offer.

What’s coming up in August:

Where to find information about Bradford events

You can find lots of information on the following websites and social media pages. So you need never miss an event again!

Bradford Council:;;; 

You can also subscribe to a regular events email from the Council here

Visit Bradford;;;

City Park;;

And of course me! Follow You Can Take the Girl Out of Bradford on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for Bradford stories and events.


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