Belle Isle enjoys the return of its Gala

After a break of five years, the Belle Isle Gala took place on Saturday (6 July 2024) and the community came out to support and enjoy the event.

As well as many stalls, there were performances from local dance and drama groups, inflatables, a climbing wall, circus skills workshops and sports activities.

Opening the Gala, the Lord Mayor of Leeds, Cllr Abigail Marshall Katung praised the ward councillors and BITMO for organising the Gala this year. She went on:

“It’s an absolute delight to be here. On behalf of the council and on behalf of the city I want to say thank you so much for a wonderful celebration of the Belle Isle community.”

Cllr Rob Chesterfield (SDP, Middleton Park) added:

“It’s great to see so many of the community coming together and big shout out to BITMO for putting all this together, enjoy the day.”

The Gala was organised by Belle Isle Tenant Management Organisation (BITMO) who are celebrating 20 years of running council housing in the area, with support from ward councillors, Windmill Primary School, Leeds Federated Housing Association and Places For People.

Deborah Kelly, CEO of BITMO, commented:

“Today has been fantastic. We’ve got loads more stalls and things for children to do than we had before. The weather’s held and loads of people have come out and it’s really good.

“We want the community to get more involved in running it so that it becomes self-sustaining and something that really brings the community together. There’s a tremendous amount of work involved it putting it on, but if the community were involved in it – many hands make light work, don’t they?

“I think it’s got potential to be something quite impressive in future years.”

The day also saw the official renaming of the playing field to Coopers Field in honour of the work Colin and Una Cooper put into the young people of Belle Isle over many years.

Planning has already started for the 2025 Gala and anyone who would like to help or has ideas to make the Gala even better are invited to a meeting on Saturday 20 July at 3pm at BITMO’s Gate centre, Aberfield Gate, LS10 3QH.


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