A weekend of fun activities for children and families is taking place in Leeds city centre this Saturday and Sunday (22 and 23 July) – all part of Child Friendly Leeds fifth birthday celebrations, and everyone is invited to come along and join in the fun – the majority of activities are free of charge.
Child Friendly Leeds is thrilled that CBBC will be joining the celebrations on Millennium Square with their fantastic Match of the Day Bucket List game, which will be hosted by popular CBeebies presenter Ben Cajee.
Also on Millennium Square this weekend will be a picnic area – so visitors are welcome to bring a packed lunch and enjoy a bite to eat on the grassed area / benches in front of the big screen, which will be showing CBBC and CBeebies programmes to keep little ones entertained. Leeds Dads and their families are hosting a Teddy Bear’s Picnic on Sunday from noon until 2pm. A number of picnic tables will also be available throughout the weekend at the ‘pop up park’ on adjacent Cookridge Street – all available on a first-come first-served basis.
Let the youngsters bounce away to their heart’s content on three Breeze inflatables or try their hand at other fun activities provided by Leeds City Council’s youth services team including Sumo Wrestling (Saturday only) and a climbing wall (Sunday only). Party Ideas Leeds is bringing their inflatable Go-Karting activity (small charge to participate) and Oxygen Free Jumping will be offering free trampolining. Other free activities on the Millennium square include toasting marshmallows with the Scouts, giant board games, sports activities, storytelling and arts and crafts.
There will be three entrances to the activity area on Millennium Square, which will open at 12 noon until 4pm on both Saturday and Sunday. Entry will be free and only adults with children will be allowed access to the event. There will be an early opening on Sunday (11am until 12 noon) for children and young people with additional needs.
Child Friendly Leeds ambassadors based around the city centre will also be running activities in their own venues including:
- Pop-up sensory room for children and young people with additional needs at Leeds City Museum,
- Indoor summer garden and exotic animals at the Merrion Centre,
- Indoor garden at The Light,
- Story time with arts and crafts at Leeds Central Library (11am to 2pm both days),
- Colouring and a free child’s lunch with every paying adult at Colby’s Coffee (Saturday),
- Films in the event space at Kirkgate Market (Saturday only),
- Drama workshop by First Floor at Trinity Leeds
- Performance of Carnival of the Animals by the Flutes Choir (22 July: 2pm and 7pm) at Arts@Trinity (the big church next to Trinity Leeds),
- Lego building and bunting making workshops at John Lewis and Victoria Gate
- Thought Bubble and Travelling Man presents Bub’s Lounge at Leeds Corn Exchange,
- Family art workshops at The Tetley (22 July only)
- Skateboarding at The Works – special £3 entry (see map for more information)
- Lidl Football Zone on Briggate (Saturday only)
Councillor Lisa Mulherin, executive member for children and families in Leeds said:
“We are immensely proud of Child friendly Leeds, which is about putting children and young people at the heart of everything we do in the city, and we think it’s really important that they are part of our fifth birthday celebrations.
“Our wonderful ambassadors share our vision, and we are grateful that so many of them are also hosting free family friendly activities this weekend.
“Leeds is a fantastic city, and I hope that families will come into the city centre and take advantage of there being lots of child friendly activities available to help keep children and families happy and entertained.”
CBeebies presenter Ben Cajee added:
“I’ve heard so much about the fantastic CBBC Live in Leeds event that took place in 2013 from my colleagues, so I’m really excited to help Child Friendly Leeds celebrate its fifth anniversary on Millennium Square this weekend.
“The Bucket List game is loads of fun and I’m really looking forward to meeting lots of people and seeing some good football skills.”
Activities taking place outdoors as part of the Big Birthday Bonanza on 22 and 23 July may have to be paused or suspended at short notice if there is inclement weather.
Some activities may be very popular so please be prepared to queue at busy times.
Security staff will only allow adults that are with a child or children into the event area on Millennium Square on 22 and 23 July.
Please visit the Child Friendly Leeds website to see our map of Big Birthday Bonanza activities here.