2014 YEP Review of the Year: April to June

Anne Maguire.
Anne Maguire.
Have your say

APRIL began with news that Yorkshire’s Kellingley colliery looked set to close with the loss of hundreds of jobs.

The National Union of Mineworkers described the announcement as a “kick in the teeth”.

* The Yorkshire Evening Post reported on the story of a young footballer who had been told she could not play in a local league because she was Spanish.

Carmen Olmos, a 14-year-old boarder at Pudsey’s Fulneck School, was left kicking her heels after the Football Association failed to obtain “international clearance” for her.

* Leeds indie rockers Kaiser Chiefs went straight in at number one with their fifth album, entitled Education, Education, Education & War.

The band’s profile had received a recent boost with frontman Ricky Wilson joining BBC TV singing show The Voice as a contestant coach.

* A leading specialist accused national NHS managers of writing a “grotesquely unfair” report on Leeds children’s heart surgery unit.

Retired Leeds consultant Dr John Gibbs claimed health service bosses had let down the unit’s staff with the report, which contained criticism of the care of 16 patients.

Operations had been temporarily suspended in 2013 but Dr Gibbs said: “There are all sorts of political and personal undercurrents with the whole thing.”

* A criminal investigation was launched at Leeds United after new owner Massimo Cellino discovered spy cameras at the club’s Elland Road ground.

* Volunteers preparing to help with the smooth running of the Tour de France’s visit to Yorkshire had been told to mind their language, the YEP revealed.

An online training tutorial put together for the Tour Makers said: “Avoid using words such as mate, love or darling – they may sound friendly to you, but they could offend some people.”

* A huge fire ripped through buildings on a Leeds industrial estate, causing damage estimated to be in the region of six to seven million pounds.

More than 100 firefighters were needed to tackle the blaze, which destroyed part of the Tradpak recycling’s firms premises on Armley Road.

* The murder of schoolteacher Ann Maguire prompted a massive outpouring of grief across Leeds and the rest of the country.

Mrs Maguire, 61, from Moortown, was fatally stabbed by pupil Will Cornick as she taught a lesson at Corpus Christi Catholic College in Halton Moor.

MAY’S headlines included the unlikely news that the old cinema at Leeds’s Merrion Centre was being lined up for use as the UK’s first indoor trampoline park.

A bid was submitted for conversion of the former movie theatre into 6,500 sq ft of trampoline space, capable of accommodating around 200 people at any one time.

* Tributes were paid to a desperately-ill mum who wed on a ward at Leeds General Infirmary but died after just six days of married life.

Donna Wheatley’s heartbroken husband Paul told of his anguish at losing his wife, saying: “She was always bright and bubbly.”

* A toddler cheated death after falling more than 20ft onto a pavement from an attic window at his family’s home in Harehills, Leeds.

Three-year-old Patrick Karpinski escaped with a cut head, bruising and a burst blood vessel in his eye after coming a cropper while trying to ‘fly’.

* Thousands of runners pounded the streets as they tackled the biggest-ever Leeds Half Marathon. A record field of 7,000 people took part in the race, organised by Run For All – the group that works to build on the fundraising legacy of the late Leeds cancer heroine Jane Tomlinson.

* Music superstar Prince played a stunning sell-out show at the First Direct Arena in Leeds.

* Labour retained its powerful majority in the council chamber in Leeds after the city’s local elections. The party finished the various vote counts with 63 out of 99 seats, with the Conservatives still the main opposition with 18 seats.

* The countdown to Yorkshire’s hosting of the Tour de France started in earnest for 5,000 Tour Maker volunteers who gathered at Leeds’s First Direct Arena for a major training event.

JUNE began in exciting fashion for sports fans as Yorkshire County Cricket Club unveiled a 20-year masterplan to redevelop Headingley cricket ground at a cost of £50m.

The plan, which included a new state-of-the-art pavilion, was intended to shore up Headingley’s status as an international venue.

* Thousands of visitors flocked to Millennium Square in Leeds as it staged the YEP-backed Yorkshire Food and Drink Show.

* Leeds United appointed the little-known David Hockaday as their new head coach.

Hockaday said he ticked all the boxes for Leeds – but ended up being sacked after just six games in charge.

* The YEP revealed that a single bus lane camera had caught out more than 6,000 motorists in its first 10 months of operation – raking in more than £250,000 for Leeds City Council.

* A report into sexual abuse carried out by disgraced Leeds entertainer Jimmy Savile revealed he had claimed 60 victims at local hospitals. The star’s regular presence on NHS premises gave him “something akin to invisibility”, said the report, which also revealed his hospital victims were aged between five and 75.

* Council bosses in Leeds secured new legal powers that meant persistent beggars risked prison or a hefty fine if they continued to operate in the city centre.

* Young cadets marched through the streets of Leeds alongside veterans and serving soldiers to mark Armed Forces Day. The day’s proceedings began in style as Dave Bellamy, from 299 Parachute Squadron Royal Engineers, abseiled down the front of Leeds Town Hall.