YEP Leeds helps you fight ‘Blue Monday’

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MANY of you might be feeling a bit blue today. But the YEP is here with a helping hand to make sure you battle those blues.

Today is commonly known as ‘Blue Monday’ – a term that was originally identified in 2005 by academic Cliff Arnall.

Factors taken into account to determine the exact date of ‘Blue Monday’ included the weather, debt and a poor post-Christmas diet.

These issues help calculate the most depressing day of the year, which is known to fall on the Monday of the last week in January.

However, people in Leeds are fighting back and there are certain groups who are determined to put a smile on your face today.

Commuters at Leeds train station will be treated to a free concert by a full orchestra this evening.

The Skipton Building Society Camerata – a professional chamber orchestra based in Yorkshire – is performing a special, one-
off classical concert at the station to lift the spirits of passersby.

The orchestra will start the concert at 5pm today (January 20) and it will finish at 6pm.

Ben Crick, artistic director, said: “We really wanted to help people to feel a bit brighter on Blue Monday, and we are really looking forward to this upcoming event.

“It’s not a usual venue for a professional orchestra so we’re excited about the reaction we will get from commuters.

“If you are feeling a bit stressed after work, 
please come down to enjoy the music.

“We will only be playing happy compositions and will strive to give you an uplifting performance!”

The Leeds First Direct Arena will also switch on some bright colours for its facade in the morning, whilst it’s still dark. They are also giving away a pair of VIP tickets to one lucky winner to an event of their choice.

People are asked to share or tag a friend on Facebook who deserves a smile, explaining why they deserve it.

The story with the most likes by the end of the day will win the tickets.

Meanwhile, staff at the St John’s Shopping Centre in Leeds will serve up free treats to shoppers from 10am to 4pm.

Staff will hand out glasses of homemade lemonade and vouchers and ideas to make your day better.

The St John’s Centre’s Rebecca Bilclough said: “The fun of Christmas and New Year feels a long time ago, the weather is usually miserable, most of us still haven’t been paid post-Christmas and it feels a long time to go until spring.

“So we thought when better to give people a lift on their lunch hour or shopping visit and planned a few surprises to lift people’s spirits. We’ve tasted the homemade lemonade in preparation and it’s delicious.

“So if you’re in Leeds city centre on Monday, please come along and join in the fun and try to turn the most depressing day of the year into a happier one.”

To help lift Leeds in its hour of need, Tetley tea has discovered that one in three people in Leeds turn to a nice cuppa to counter the blues.

Tetley has worked with psychologist Judi James to discover the best ways to beat the January blues.

She said: “Waking up on Blue Monday is never going to sound life-enhancing. ‘Brew Monday’ has a completely different ring to it though.”

Motivational writer Helen Collier, who writes a regular Money Talks column in the YEP on Tuesdays, offered her own tips.

She said: “The credit card bills have arrived, the pay cheque seems weeks off or doesn’t seem enough to cover everything. I’m not surprised that this time of year is a time for feeling ‘blue’. I’d say make a start on the money clutter. Putting things off can cause more stress. Take a deep breath and make a list of all the things that you’ve been putting off about money. Choose one thing from the list, put the rest away. Ask yourself ‘What’s the first thing I need to do to get this done?’”


Top tips for how you brighten up your days, have been sent to us.

They include:

Joanne Talbot:

Best thing for me for #bluemonday is going to see my beautiful horse.

Dom LUFC Crooke:

Don’t think about Leeds United

Pine Tribe:

Some music would help we think!

Ruth Mosalski:

Plan something nice to look forward to after work, if it’s a long soak with a book or a trip to the cinema. Having something to look forward to will help the day go quicker.

Ellie Marshall:

Whenever something good happens through the year, write it on a bit of paper and put it in a jar. Then if you’re feeling a bit down, you can look in the jar and be reminded of all the good things - like a memory bank.


You’ve been sending in your jokes to help brighten up this ‘blue’ day.

James Islip:

The price of air has gone up at my local petrol station from 20p to 50p.

That’s inflation for you!

Andrew Hutchinson:

A tom cat hijacks a plane, sticks a gun into the pilot’s ribs.

He demands: ‘Take me to the Canaries.’

Richard Oldfield:

Q: What’s E.T. short for?

A: Because he’s got little legs.

Emma Stewart:

Q: Did you hear about the Mexican train killer?

A: He had locomotives.

Michael Gill:

Q: What’s black and white and red all over?

A: A newspaper.

Alex Hughes:

You’ll never guess who I bumped into on the way to the opticians! Everyone.

Ian Rounce:

Q: What’s brown and sounds like a bell?

A: Dung.

Tomas Pietrangeli, Managing Director, Arla Foods UK, Photo: Adrian Forrest

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