Christmas cheer at Yorkshire Evening Post's annual carol concert at Leeds Minster
As in times past the bells of Leeds Minster were a call to the city’s people and last night, as they did then, they came together to celebrate Christmas and help those less fortunate.
As the ringing sounded through the dimly lit streets on a windy December night, hundreds of people filed into the historic church for the annual Yorkshire Evening Post carol service.
It is seen as the opener to the festive season in Leeds with a service packed with traditional hymns, carols and readings.
The evening was started with a resounding version of O Come, All Ye Faithful followed by an address by the Reverend Canon Sam Corley, the Rector of Leeds.
Perhaps in light of current events he called for leaders to come together and to spare a thought for the most vulnerable in society during his prayers.
He said: “Those who bear responsibility for [the world’s future] – in politics or in industry and commerce, in education or communication – may be inspired by the message of Christmas to work together, so that justice, freedom and peace may everywhere be established; that people of all races and cultures and faiths – in this city and overseas – may prosper in mutual flourishing.”
He asked for prayers for the homeless and unemployed, cold and hungry and the ill and anxious.
Readings were given by Yorkshire Evening Post Editor Laura Collins; Joseph Keith, head of news, and reporter Susie Beever. During the service the Minster was plunged into darkness while the Christmas tree lights were switched on and the public placed gifts underneath the tree.
They will then be passed to Leeds Council’s social services department and under-privileged children.
Afterwards, Mrs Collins said: “The Yorkshire Evening Post’s Christmas carol service really kick-starts the festive season in the city.
“It was fantastic to see so many families gather at the Minister to celebrate through the power of music.
“As ever our hundreds of readers who came together in Leeds never cease to amaze me with their sheer generosity.
“They left so many wonderful presents under the tree to ensure some of our city’s most vulnerable will have something to open on Christmas Day.”