Millennium Square transformed as City Beach returns to Leeds

Kimberley Green with Ryan Green, two, from Headingley.''Picture: Mark Bickerdike

Kimberley Green with Ryan Green, two, from Headingley.''Picture: Mark Bickerdike

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HUNDREDS of families enjoyed fun in the sun when City Beach returned to the heart of Leeds this weekend.

Now in its third year, Millennium Square has been transformed with a sandy beach, funfair and decking area with traditional seaside fun and games, including the ever-popular Punch and Judy.

Amelia Murgatroyd, from Stanningley, enjoying her ice cream.

Amelia Murgatroyd, from Stanningley, enjoying her ice cream.

The leader of Leeds Council, Coun Judith Blake, who officially opened City Beach yesterday with Heart Radio Breakfast Show presenter Emma Lenney, said: “City Beach seems to get better and more popular every year and I know it’s a highlight of the summer for many children and families in Leeds.

“We’re very fortunate to have a fabulous city centre space like Millennium Square to use for such a fun and unusual event and it was great to be here to officially launch the event today. I’ll look forward to seeing everyone enjoying themselves on the square over the next few weeks.”

New for this year’s City Beach is child-friendly rollercoaster Thunder Mountain, alongside a traditional helter skelter and other rides for children of all ages.

Highlights of spectacular, which is open daily until August 31, will be a pirate-themed weekend on August 22 and 23, which will feature a Pirates of the Caribbean’ Jack Sparrow lookalike, pirate boats and a treasure hunt.

One year old Michael Wrigglesworth, from East End Park, having fun in the sand.

One year old Michael Wrigglesworth, from East End Park, having fun in the sand.

Roger Tubey Jnr, of International Funfairs, which organisers the event with Leeds Council, said around 500 people had visited City Beach in the first few hours of opening on Saturday alone.

Mr Tubey said: “We’ve got so much going on. If people want to come down to the beach it’s completely free to come and soak up the atmosphere, lots of entertainment and competitions with Heart Radio, and reasonably priced rides as well.”

Trisha Burns of Stanningley brought along her granddaughter Amelia Murgatroyd, 21 months, on Saturday.

She said: “Amelia absolutely loved it. It was great, we were on the sand having an ice cream, with so much going on around us.”

Sejal Shinde, three, from Leeds, tries out a hula hoop.

Sejal Shinde, three, from Leeds, tries out a hula hoop.

Connie Nolan, from Hull, relaxes in a giant deck chair.

Connie Nolan, from Hull, relaxes in a giant deck chair.

Emma and Alex Mclaughlin with daughter Orla, from New Farnley, enjoying the beach.

Emma and Alex Mclaughlin with daughter Orla, from New Farnley, enjoying the beach.

City Beach at Millennium Square on Saturday.

City Beach at Millennium Square on Saturday.

PIC:  James Hardisty.

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