City News

York Artist Incubation Call Out

Twelve creative organisations in York have come together to develop an artist incubation programme for emerging artists that are based in the local region and create live performance work. This project will support 6 emerging artists or companies to develop both their artistic practise and their business knowledge. This will be done by creating a bespoke package of support, that will continue for a year.

SLAP (Supporting Live Art & Performance) are currently inviting individual artists and companies living in the YO postcode area to apply to be a part of the programme. Each successful artist or company will receive a year of tailored package of support which includes: 

  • A year of producing support from SLAP
  • 6 training sessions covering a wide range of areas that are essential to being a working artist
  • £1000 bursary
  • Production budget
  • Tailored photoshoot to create high quality marketing images
  • Creative commission
  • Two weeks residency space – at one of our partner venues
  • Opportunities to deliver workshops
  • Use of a City Centre office space
  • Performance Date  – at one of our partner venues
  • Documentation of your live performance

To learn more and apply visit – 

Deadline – Monday 3rd January, 5pm 

This project has been made possible with the support of the following organisations: Arts Council England, Accessible Arts & Media, Explore Libraries and Archives Mutual Limited, Guild of Media Arts, Kaizen Arts CIC, Make It York, Mediale, York Museums Trust, York Music Venue Network, York St John University, York Theatre Royal and Yorkshire Dance.

York Disability Week – Promoting an Equal, Inclusive and Accessible York

27 Nov to 4 Dec

Now in its fifth year, the twenty two events in York Disability Week offer something for people of all ages, disabled or not. Mainly led by disabled people and free to attend, some are online (or both online and in-person) and some are in-person only.

York Disability Week 2021 has the support of York Paralympian, Beth Moulam. Beth represented GB at Boccia at the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games. Beth settled in York after moving to study in the city in 2013.

“The welcome, acceptance and on-going support that I received here in the city, as both a student and athlete, means I am now proud to call York my home. As a result, I am delighted

to support York Disability Week in promoting an equal, inclusive and accessible York for all.

I hope you will join me in celebrating York Disability Week.”

Beth Moulam, GB Paralympian and York Resident

The programme is packed with a broad range of activities, with events on disability rights and activism, music, culture and arts, disability in the workplace, higher education, city centre and community spaces, volunteering opportunities, and a chance to get together and socialise.

The week includes the fifteenth anniversary of United Nations International Day of Disabled People (3 December). It promotes disability rights and well-being in all spheres of society and development, including political, social, economic and cultural life (;

· If you want to find out more, or get a copy of the printed programme, contact details are: email:; website:; tel: 01904 702060; facebook at @YorkDisabilityWeek.

· Printed copies of the programme are also available from the Visitor Information Centre (1 Museum Street)

· Making events accessible – if anyone needs additional support to take part, please contact the festival team using the methods above.

A picture of Beth Moulam, York Paralympian, in Tokyo ahead of this year’s Paralympic Games. She’s in her outfit for the opening ceremony

Yorkshire Schools Dance Festival Celebrates Rugby League World Cup 2021 ‘Power of Together’ Theme

This year, the Yorkshire Schools Dance Festival are supporting the Rugby League World Cup to celebrate a shared message – “The Power of Together’. 

The 2021 Yorkshire Schools Dance (YSDF21) will be staged at the University of York across the weekends of the 13th/14th and 20th/21st November. 1200 children and young people from 56 schools, colleges and groups across the Yorkshire region will be performing.

Taking place around 12 months before the Rugby League World Cup (RLWC2021) begins, YSDF21 will celebrate the tournament’s ‘Power of Together’ theme. In a breakthrough moment for Rugby League, the men’s, women’s and wheelchair games will be coming together for the first time on the sport’s biggest stage – bigger, better and bolder than ever before.

The theme has been adopted for YSDF21 with all participating schools, colleges and groups creating unique performances in response to ‘The Power of Together’. We’ll see interpretations that celebrate human and emotional connections. We’ll also be celebrating the creativity of the teachers, dance leaders and young dancers as well as the power of dance to communicate important messages that connect us together as communities.

The Festival, sponsored by Yorkshire Education Recruitment, supports and promotes dance within schools. Colin Jackson, Producer of the Event says, “The theme has never been more relevant. After a difficult year for all of us, this is a unique opportunity to put the voice of children and young people centre stage. We know that their message will be clear – that by working together towards shared aims we can achieve almost anything.”

Cllr Darryl Smalley, executive member for culture at City of York Council, said: “The Schools Dance Festival is a very fitting way to mark the one-year-to-go milestone of the Rugby League World Cup, something to which York and the whole country is eagerly anticipating. The shared theme of our ‘Power of Together’ is a relevant and increasingly important message which we can all relate to. As a city, York has put this message into practice throughout the last 19 months, as communities have come together in a time of need.

“I’m really looking forward to the excellent displays of talent and enthusiasm of all those participating. After a difficult year, it’s events such as these that bring burst of much-needed joy to us all.”

Laura Pagan, a teacher at Scarcroft Primary School in York said:  “Our School are exploring how it feels to be excluded by friends or society and thinking about how coming together in support of others is a powerful tool to avoid people feeling isolated. We have a very large group of enthusiastic dancers who are looking forward to taking part in the dance festival again.”

 Tickets for the 2021 Yorkshire Schools Dance Festival are available via the website. Anyone purchasing tickets for YSDF21 will be entered into a prize draw to win 4 tickets for the Rugby League World Cup matches scheduled for York’s Community Stadium.

Tickets for next year’s RLWC2021 Tournament will be available to buy in winter 2021 once the full 2022 schedule has been released. Visit for more information and for details on how to sign up to receive ticket alerts and all the latest news first.

Visit to purchase tickets.

Plans announced for York Christmas Festival 2021

St Nicholas Fair set to return to York’s city centre from 18th November to 23rd December 

The popular St Nicholas Fair will be returning to York city centre this year between 18th November and 23rd December – with an array of local businesses selling everything from handmade gifts to delicious seasonal treats and crafts.  

Sixty-eight festive alpine chalets will be spread across Parliament Street and St Sampson’s Square, offering a range of unique gifts, seasonal food and drinks and local produce.  

THOR’S tipi will also be back for its sixth year on Parliament Street, from 17th Nov to the 2nd Jan 2022. Serving traditional ‘Winter Warmers,’ such as mulled wine & luxury hot chocolate, with delicious feasts by Yuzu Street Food – all in a twinkly, Christmas style tipi with real log fire. The rustic Yorkshire Barn in St Sampson’s Square will warm up guests with festive food and drink, from hot chestnuts to mulled wine and King’s Square will host the much-loved Vintage Carousel throughout the festive season.   

Plans are also underway for the city to be decorated once again with stunning festive lights, giving a special festive back drop for residents and visitors to the city centre to enjoy. Delivered by York BID in partnership with Make It York, the winter light scheme this year includes the Tree of Light at the Eye of York, beautiful Christmas trees on St Helen’s Square, Parliament Street and Shambles Market and York’s historic bars illuminated with thousands of twinkling lights.

The city-wide Christmas offer is also set to be bigger and better than ever. Castle Howard will welcome back theatrical designers Charlotte Lloyd Webber, Bretta Gereke and team who have worked their magic on Castle Howard at Christmas for the past four seasons. Inspired by the much-adored novels by C. S. Lewis the historic house will be turned into the wintery, magical land of Narnia. Visitors will journey through the grand state rooms and experience installations based on scenes from the epic stories.  

The National Centre for Early Music will be holding their popular York Early Music Christmas Festival (3rd-11th December). This year’s festival includes the return of Joglaresa, whose exuberant music and wassailing sums up Yuletide in music and song; The Gesulado Six, returning to York after playing to packed houses in the York Early Music Festival 2021; and award-winning young artists Prisma, from Germany. 

Residents and visitors can also look forward to a host of other festive events taking place at the city’s attractions – not to mention a fantastic choice of entertainment at the city’s theatres and venues, with pantomimes and Christmas carol concerts.  

Following the success of last year’s virtual Christmas market, an online market will also run on throughout the whole festive season. Helping to bring the magic of St Nicholas Fair into homes across the country, the virtual market will offer a safe and snug option for those looking to purchase their festive gifts online this year, whilst also supporting York’s traders, retailers and attractions.   

Cllr Keith Aspden, Leader of the Council and Executive Member for Policy, Strategy and Partnerships, said: “Christmas celebrations are always special in York and many of us undoubtedly missed our usual city-wide festivities last year. With the return of so many well-loved events and additions of many new ones, I am sure residents and visitors will once again be looking forward to enjoying our city throughout the festive season. 

“York has a fantastic range of independent and small businesses offering exceptional services and products. Christmas is a great time to support our local businesses by purchasing unique gifts and enjoying all they have to offer.  This Christmas we look forward to welcoming residents and visitors to safely enjoy the magic of the festive period in York.” 

Ashley Young, Senior Marketing and Communications Manager at Make It York, said: “York is a city that really comes alive at Christmas and we’ve been working hard behind the scenes to put plans in place for an event that will really deliver the festive magic that York is renowned for. We are delighted to be working with so many local traders to bring back St Nicholas Fair back better than ever and create a magical festive experience for visitors and residents to enjoy.  

The programme of Christmas activities going on in and around York this year is outstanding –with so many unique experiences on offer at the city’s attractions and venues across the city, combined with world-class food and drink and an array of independent retailers and traders.” 

St Nicholas Fair will be open from 18th November to 23rd December – Sunday – Thursday 10:00 to 18:00 and Friday & Saturday 10:00 to 20:00. 

For regular updates on what’s happening in York over Christmas, or a free guide to Christmas in the City, visit or email  A new guide to Christmas will be available free of charge from the Visit York Information Centre, 1 Museum Street, from the last week in September.  


For further information please contact:  

Amy Goodman, Consumer Communications Manager 

Notes to editors: 

About Make It York  

Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business. Its mission is to grow the economic prosperity and wider wellbeing of York and its citizens. In practice, this means delivering a range of projects and programmes based around our four corporate strategic priorities.  These are:  

  • City positioning and profile-raising 
  • Inward Investment and network building 
  • Ensuring an exciting city centre 
  • Delivering the city’s ground-breaking Cultural Strategy 

First Bus York Partner with Make It York on plans to Reinvigorate Shambles Market

A new partnership between First Bus York and Make It York has been set up to invest in the future of Shambles Market and create a “destination magnet” that attracts more visitors through highlighting a mix of local artisan and traditional vendors plus entertainment. 

The partnership’s plan to support York’s diverse array of independent market traders will see a vibrant and modern look for the market, new creative marketing promotions and regular pop-up events.  

Ashley Young, Senior Marketing and Communications Manager at Make It York and John Godfrey, Marketing Director at First Bus York © Gareth Buddo

As one of the city’s greatest assets, Shambles Market is the home to York’s largest group of independent traders – offering an eclectic mix of fresh produce, crafts, flowers, gift ideas, clothing and much more. This includes long-standing produce traders such as John Mannion Greengrocers (whose family have been trading on the market since 1906), local artists such as Ipso Facto Art, ethical soap company Janurelle, Zazen Boutique jewellery and an array of other independent small businesses.  

The Shambles Market Food Court is also home to some of the city’s finest street food vendors – including indie businesses such as Taylor Made Kitchen, The Doghouse, Shambles Kitchen, Los Moros, Pizzoli and more.  

The partnership with First Bus York is sparked by an ambition to enhance Shambles Market’s reputation as a ‘must-see’ destination for residents and visitors to the city and highlight the unique blend of quirky independent businesses and quality produce available on the market.  

First Bus York also supported the Young Market Trader competition earlier this summer. The event saw 20 year-old Millie Thomas with her cake business ‘Sweet Treats by Mil’ going forward to the regional finals of the National Young Market Trader competition and receiving a free pitch on the market for a year. 

Now, through the partnership, a vibrant refresh of the market branding is underway with new colourful signage at the entrance and on the stalls. This will emphasise the importance of supporting York businesses and shopping local.  

Ashley Young, Senior Marketing and Communications Manager at Make It York and John Godfrey, Marketing Director at First Bus York with Love Local sign © Gareth Buddo

A new short film has also been created to promote the quality local produce available in the market. Under a ‘Field to Fork’ theme the video showcases how the market’s fresh products are used by businesses across the city to deliver a quality customer experience. The video features trader Sheila’s Greengrocers as they collect fresh strawberries each morning which are then used on food court trader KREP’s delicious crepes .  

A series of pop-up events are in plan to be introduced to the Market. This included a new ‘Vintage Market’ event this week (31st August) which showcased a range of local vintage traders from around the city including Books for Amnesty, Angela Bare, Sue Ryder, Syd Comerford Antiques and Panayis Cult Art Prints. Bringing together a range of retro, collectable and quirky products, the ‘Vintage Market’ event proved popular with residents and visitors alike, offering something for everyone’s taste, style and price point.  

A special ‘Night Market’ will also take place on the evening of 17th September in partnership with York Creatives. The event will see a range of independent traders, street food, drinks and music coming to the market, with free entry for all.  

John Godfrey, Head of Marketing at First Bus York, said:

“We’re here to connect customers to great experiences on the streets of York and Shambles Market will become a destination magnet to draw in local people and visitors to discover a special atmosphere for shopping and relaxing that entices them into the heart of the city.” 

Ashley Young, Senior Marketing and Communications Manager at Make It York said: 

“Shambles Market is home to so many incredibly creative and talented businesses – from long established traders who have been on the market for decades to young entrepreneurs who are just starting out. Our ambition is to work alongside our traders and fantastic partners like First Bus York to grow and develop Shambles Market into one of the most celebrated markets in the country and enhance its reputation as a destination in its own right.  

The market offers a truly unique experience for residents and visitors and we are looking forward to developing plans over the coming months to promote it as a world-class destination and support our family of traders.”  

Kevin Touhy Chair of York Market Traders Forum and Owner of Bags of Style said

“The Shambles Market traders welcome the time and support that First Bus have put into promoting the market so excellently. Working together we hope that the market will continue to grow in stature and become an integral part of any York experience for both tourists and locals alike. “ 

For more information about Shambles Market visit 


For further information please contact:  

Ana Ignatova – Communications Executive  

Notes to editors: 

About Make It York  

Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business. Its mission is to grow the economic prosperity and wider wellbeing of York and its citizens. In practice, this means delivering a range of projects and programmes based around our four corporate strategic priorities.  These are:  

  • City positioning and profile-raising 
  • Inward Investment and network building 
  • Ensuring an exciting city centre 
  • Delivering the city’s ground-breaking Cultural Strategy 

Rugby League World Cup to be staged in 2022

Rugby League World Cup 2021 (RLWC2021) and the UK Government have today announced their intention to stage the flagship event in the international Rugby League calendar in 2022. 

The extremely difficult decision was taken by the RLWC2021 Board, which includes representation from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, and the International Rugby League (IRL) Board.  

This follows extensive and urgent consultation conducted by RLWC2021 Chief Executive Officer Jon Dutton and his team, which engaged players, competing nations, the Rugby League Players Association (Australia), UK Government, hosts, commercial and broadcast partners. 

Tournament organisers faced several unique and complex challenges with the most significant being the non-release of up to 400 players, match officials and staff members from the NRL competition in Australia. This is despite all requests from international rugby league federations having been met which included the rigorous health measures that have been keeping thousands of elite athletes from around the world safe whilst competing in major sporting events across the UK over the last year.   

Ultimately this decision has been detrimental to the plans and ambitions of many of the competing nations and potential replacement teams. A key factor was ensuring that fans of Rugby League are able to enjoy the best possible tournament, which was not possible under these circumstances.  

Jon Dutton, RLWC2021 Chief Executive Officer, said:  

“Today is a challenging moment for everyone involved in Rugby League, but most importantly the players and fans of the competing nations.  

“Ultimately, time and competing priorities from others forced us to make the most difficult decision in our six-year history. However, we and the sport of Rugby League are resilient, and next year we will deliver our vision of the biggest and best Rugby League World Cup ever.  

“We have always prioritised player voice and player choice. We have established a player working group, met with senior players and in the last few days commissioned a player survey to domestic players in Australia and New Zealand that showed more than 85% wanted to compete at RLWC2021 this year. However, following the disappointing decision of the ARLC and NZRL to withdraw, and the subsequent impact on player availability for other competing nations, it is apparent that delivering the tournament this year would not be feasible.  

“The wellbeing of all those involved in the tournament, particularly players and team officials, has been our priority. I would like to thank the RLWC2021 Board and my team for the relentless hard work and extraordinary measures that had been undertaken to create a safe and secure environment in line with other major sports events that have been successfully hosted in the UK this year. 

“I would also like to thank all our committed partners as well as the Rugby League community at large who have been so supportive of our trailblazing event. We appreciate the continued and unequivocal support of the UK Government, as well as the understanding of our competing nations.” 

Chris Brindley, RLWC2021 Chair, added: 

“This process has shown that the RLWC Board are responsible leaders who have put the solidarity and unity of the sport first. The Board will now seek the commitment and alignment of all key partners immediately to deliver a clear timetable for the tournament next year.  

“Now is the time for everyone who loves our game to come together, to show that Rugby League deserves its place on the international stage, and that the RLWC is a tournament we can all be proud of.” 

Councillor Darryl Smalley, executive member for culture, leisure and communities, said: 

“Whilst the Rugby League World Cup isn’t happening as soon as we’d hoped, we are glad there are still plans for it going ahead and look forward to welcoming the world’s best rugby league athletes next year. 

“We are working closely with the Rugby League World Cup to prepare for a covid safe tournament next year. The association with the world cup has already seen over £300,000 invested in sports facilities with York’s communities, and we’re determined to build on that legacy. 

“With our partners,  we will continue to make sure this event is a huge success and leaves a real mark on the city, inspiring future generations for years to come.” 

Greg Dyke, Chair of Make It York said: 

 “We understand that it’s been a hugely difficult decision to make and appreciate all the hard work and effort that has been made by the tournament organisers to try to safely stage the event this year. 

One of the main objectives for bringing the event to York was to ensure a long-lasting legacy in the community through ongoing activities with local schools, clubs and wider investment in the sport. There has been so much great work happening in this area already and this will continue to be a strong focus as we build up to the rescheduled event next year.  

We are looking forward to working with the tournament team and stakeholders across the city to plan the biggest and best Rugby League World Cup in 2022. “ 

Jon Flatman, Chairman, York City Knights said : 

 “The Rugby League World Cup team have worked tirelessly to explore all options for the tournament, and whilst it won’t be going ahead as planned this year, we are looking forward to working with them, and  partners across the city to make it happen in 2022.  

We now have another year to build on the plans to ensure a long-lasting legacy for the event – working with schools and across the local community to continue to inspire people about the sport. It is set to be a fantastic event – bringing world class talent in Rugby League to York and something to really get excited about for next year!” 

Troy Grant, IRL Chair, said: 

On behalf of the whole international Rugby League community, I must thank Jon Dutton, Chris Brindley and their team for their unstinting efforts.  I know that their focus is now on 2022. I also place on record our thanks to the UK Government, our sponsors and partners for their support throughout this whole process. They have been outstanding and understanding friends and we look forward to continuing the journey with them. 

“We must now move forward quickly from this point to build confidence in our sport internationally and to seize the opportunity which still presents itself; to deliver the best Rugby League World Cup ever. I look forward to 2022 and the future with optimism and a renewed focus on the importance of international Rugby League for all our members large and small. 

“We have seen the success that the Olympic Games and the Euro 2020 championship experienced after their postponements, and we are all determined to deliver the best Rugby League World Cup ever in 2022.” 

Sports Minister Nigel Huddleston said:  

“I am disappointed that we’ve needed to take the decision to delay the Rugby League World Cup. Despite working tirelessly to explore solutions that would allow us to go ahead as planned, circumstances beyond our control have meant that postponing the Rugby League World Cup until next year is the strongest option for staging a successful tournament. 

“In the best interests of the sport and its millions of supporters around the world, I look forward to the Rugby League authorities in all competing nations accommodating a rearranged tournament in 2022, so we can put on the spectacle the fans deserve.” 

Information on the rescheduling of the tournament and new dates will be released by organisers in due course. For the latest news and ticketing updates sign-up via 

For existing ticket holders details regarding the next steps for ticket transfers and refunds will be provided directly by no later than 12 August 2021. 


For more information, contact: 

Michael Gibson 

Head of Media and Communications, RLWC2021 


Phone: +44(0)7435556074 

Amy Goodman – Consumer Communications Manager 
Phone: 07719105088 

Residents invited to a ‘Summer of Sport’ Open Day

As part of the ‘Summer of Sport’ events programme, a special open day will be taking place in the city centre on Sunday 8th August with a variety of sports clubs and community groups coming together to showcase the sport and leisure activities residents can get involved with.  

Taking place from 11AM until 4.30PM in St Sampson’s Square, residents are invited to come along to find out more about the city’s community sport and leisure offer, chat to providers and clubs and get involved in some fun taster activities with the chance to win prizes.   

A series of sporty challenges will be available on the day for residents and visitors to take part in – including everything from a squash wall, rowing and cycling challenges, practicing football and hockey skills.  

Leisure providers and clubs taking part include:  

  • City of York Hockey Club – learn more about York’s Hockey Club and take part in their hockey goal scoring challenge 
  • York Sports Village – find out more about the York Sports Village facilities and join their rowing machine challenge 
  • Walx – Nordic Walking –  learn more about using Nordic walking poles or how to walk for relaxation or fitness, whatever your fitness level. 
  • Open Country – Walking and Cycling – find out more about Open Country, who have over 30 years of experience in successfully organising and leading countryside activities for people with disabilities  
  • Wigginton Squash Club – take on the squash wall and find out more about how you can get involved with the club 
  • York City Football Club Foundation – find out more about York City Football Club Foundation and test your football skills with their ‘Keepy Uppy’ challenge  
  • GLL Better – learn more about the facilities here in York and take a turn on their spin bike challenge. 
  • City York Council Walking and Cycling and Sport and Active Leisure – pick up a leaflet and find out where you can walk and cycle across the city.  And talk to the sport and active leisure team about your local sport or physical activity provider. 

The event is part of the Summer of Sport programme of activities which take place in the city centre until 5th September. In a collaboration between Make It York, THOR’s Tipi and First Bus York, the activity includes an interactive sporty sculpture trail, pop-up tipi bars, a street food village and urban running routes.  

Throughout August, residents and visitors can also enjoy free yoga classes at THOR’s tipi each week in partnership with Emperor’s Gym. Classes run each Wednesday (07.30AM -08.30AM) and Friday (08.30AM – 09.30AM) with pre-booking required by email to Free outdoor ping pong tables, sponsored by JORVIK Viking Centre are also located on Parliament Street for people to enjoy this month.  

Dominic Berry, Senior Events Manager at Make It York said: “We are delighted to welcome sports clubs and groups from across York to the city centre for this special open day as part of our ‘Summer of Sport’ programme of activity. York has such a wide variety of fantastic sports clubs and leisure facilities and the event will be a great opportunity to showcase this and support residents to find out more about what is available in their city.” 

Councillor Darryl Smalley, Executive Member for Culture, Leisure & Communities at City of York Council, said: “I’m delighted pleased that residents can enjoy and benefit from this brilliant series of activities. They are much-needed opportunities after a year when so many of us haven’t been able to be as active as usual. The Summer of Sport is a terrific showcase for some of the city’s excellent clubs, so have a go and see what you discover!” 

Download the Summer of Sport map sponsored by First Bus York at or pick up printed copies in the Visitor Information Centre at 1 Museum Street.  


Notes to Editor 

Make It York  

Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business.  The company’s remit covers leisure and business tourism, city centre management, festivals and events, business support and inward investment. 

For further information please contact: 

Amy Goodman – Consumer Communications Manager 

Ana Ignatova – Communications Executive 


Yorkshire Day celebrations for York residents and visitors

To celebrate Yorkshire Day a series of fun Yorkshire-themed activities will be taking place throughout the city centre over the weekend (30th July to 1st August), coordinated by Make It York, York BID and City of York Council. City centre streets will be decked out with Yorkshire bunting for the three-day celebrations, with local businesses across the city invited to dress their windows in all things Yorkshire.  

Kicking off from Friday 30th July, residents and visitors are invited to take their best selfies with fun Yorkshire countryside themed props at selfie points located on Parliament Street and Tower Gardens.  People are encouraged to get creative and snap their best Yorkshire photos and post to social media using #York_ShireDay #LoveYork and tagging in @VisitYork and @YorkBID for the chance to win a £250 York Gift Card each day.  

Throughout the three days there will also be series of family-friendly movie screenings with big screens located on St Sampson’s Square and Tower Gardens. Running each day, family classics including ‘Chicken Run’, ‘Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were Rabbit’ and ‘A Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon’ will be screening with additional seating out for residents and visitors to sit back and enjoy the films. Archive footage of York from days gone by will also be airing throughout the day with a full film schedule available on   

Some of the finest local products will also be taking centre stage, with York Gin, Crumbs Cupcakery and Love Cheese all with stalls on St Sampson’s Square, as well the Visit York Visitor Information Centre team being on hand with expert advice on making the most of York and Yorkshire. 

As part of the celebrations York’s Civic party will also be welcoming a small number of Civic Heads from across Yorkshire to celebrate Yorkshire’s special status and York’s unique environment and cultural heritage in a Covid-safe way. 

Helen Apsey, Head of Culture and Wellbeing at Make It York said: “We are so excited to celebrate Yorkshire Day in the city with a fun-packed weekend of activities for residents and visitors to get involved with. We are proud to be a Yorkshire city and it’s great to be able to celebrate this special day with local people, businesses and visitors to the city after what has been a difficult year for us all. We hope people will really enjoy all the themed activities this weekend and experience the fantastic ambience and atmosphere of York on Yorkshire Day.”  

Andrew Lowson, Executive Director at York BID said: “We are delighted to be helping put the ‘York’ back into Yorkshire Day. With films, food and photo competitions there’s something for everyone to enjoy this weekend, in addition to the warm hospitality and top-class service that local businesses provide all year round.” 

Cllr Keith Aspden, Leader of City of York Council, said: “Yorkshire Day is a fantastic opportunity to celebrate, and reflect on, all that is great about our city and county. 

“As a region famed for the strength of character of its residents, the last 19 months have shown how our communities come together in the face of adversity. Their resilience, compassion and understanding has showcased the very best of our county. 

“Those attributes of tolerance, understanding and respect, which have been so important throughout the pandemic, will help us to continue to support one another as, together, we take the next steps into new ways of living and working.” 

“I’m looking forward to enjoying archive Yorkshire films in St Sampson’s Square, seeing the Chicken Run in Tower Gardens, as well as welcome different Mayors from across Yorkshire to enjoy our city” 

Find out more at  


Notes to Editor 

Make It York  

Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business.  The company’s remit covers leisure and business tourism, city centre management, festivals and events, business support and inward investment. 

For further information please contact: 

Amy Goodman – Consumer Communications Manager 

Ana Ignatova – Communications Executive 


Rugby League World Cup 2021 organisers on schedule to deliver trailblazing tournament – with eight matches to be hosted in York

  • RLWC2021 organisers have confirmed that they will deliver the biggest and best ever Rugby League World Cup in October and November 2021 
  • York will host eight women’s tournament fixtures, including both women’s semi-finals at the LNER Community Stadium 
  • To mark the 100-day countdown to the opening match of the tournament between hosts England and Samoa at St James’ Park, Newcastle, all remaining tickets will go on sale today via 
  • To celebrate the 100 days to go 100 tickets for York matches are available to win on 

Rugby League World Cup 2021 organisers today (15 July) confirmed that the trailblazing event will go ahead as scheduled in October and November 2021 with eight women’s tournament fixtures, including both women’s semi-finals at the LNER Community Stadium.  

With 100 days to go until the opening match of the tournament, tickets are now back on general sale via In celebration of the countdown there are also 100  tickets available to win by taking part in Visit York’s competition on

Picture by Will Palmer/ – 13/07/2021 – RLWC2021 Rugby League World Cup 2021. The Rugby League World Cup Trophies and Ben Fry (York Town Crier) pictured in front of York Minster, York.

The global event, which sees the men’s, women’s and wheelchair tournaments taking place simultaneously for the first time, will be played in front of passionate capacity crowds in a celebration of sport.  

At a pivotal moment for the international Rugby League, tournament organisers have worked relentlessly to provide certainty and clarity by tackling the significant challenges presented by the pandemic. Organisers have successfully delivered record sponsorship deals, including a domestic broadcast deal which means all matches will be live across BBC platforms, and have sold significant overseas broadcast rights. 

At the same time, ticket sales have so far exceeded expectations and the positive social contribution to communities, including some of those hardest hit by the pandemic has been extensive. 

Picture by Will Palmer/ – 13/07/2021 – RLWC2021 Rugby League World Cup 2021. The Rugby League World Cup Trophies pictured inside the LNER Community Stadium, York.

Jon Dutton, Chief Executive of RLWC2021, said: 

“We are delighted to be able to provide clarity and certainty to fans, players, partners, media and those that have supported our journey over the past few years. We have an overwhelming desire to deliver the biggest and best ever Rugby League World Cup and through our determination and decisiveness we will be able to achieve this vision. 

“We recognise there are still many challenges ahead, but we will work relentlessly and will take the most extraordinary measures with the support of all involved to stage the tournament in 100 days time. 

“Despite the adversity we have faced, we have never lost sight of our core purpose of making a positive impact on people’s lives. Our social impact programme has and will continue to be a beacon of much needed positivity and hope in communities across England. 

“We have no doubt that the Rugby League family, along with the 20,021 key workers we have invited, the many fans who will see the action live in the stadiums across England and the millions watching around the world will be part of a unifying celebration of sport and humanity.” 

Councillor Darryl Smalley, Executive Member for Leisure, Culture and Tourism said: 

“We are delighted that the 2021 Rugby League World Cup will be coming to York later this year, giving us something to really look forward to as a city. The line-up of games at the LNER Community Stadium looks set to offer some fantastic entertainment for residents and visitors as we welcome world-class athletes to our city.” 

Jon Flatman, Chairman of York City Knights said: 

The excitement is really building now with just 100 days to go until the Rugby League World Cup 2021 tournament begins. The tournament has a huge global reach and a strong community-led approach and it’s such a brilliant event for York and the sport more widely. We are looking forward to welcoming players and fans to the city to be a part of sporting history this November!” 

Charlotte Hawes, Events Manager at Make It York said: 

“Reaching the 100 days milestone is hugely exciting and we can’t wait for the tournament to come to York later this year. The last year has been challenging for everyone and it’s brilliant to see live events on this scale returning to the city. The tournament will provide a real boost to York, bringing some of the biggest names in the sport here to experience the city’s world class offer.” 

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said:

“As we reach 100 days to go, the anticipation is building with Rugby League’s biggest competition coming back to England.” 

“After the challenges of the past 18 months where the positive impact of Rugby League in communities has shone through, the moment when the men’s, women’s and wheelchair teams take to the pitch will be a watershed moment for both the sport and the country.” 

“I’m delighted that fans can look forward to a festival of Rugby League that promises to inspire new fans and grow the grassroots, and the Government has been pleased to play its part in supporting this incredible inclusive event.” 

York will host six women’s group stage fixtures, and both semi-finals: 

  • New Zealand vs France – Wednesday 10 November at 17:00 
  • Australia vs Cook Islands – Wednesday 10 November at 19:30 
  • New Zealand vs Cook Islands – Sunday 14 November at 17:00 
  • Australia vs France – Sunday 14 November at 19:30 
  • France vs Cook Islands – Thursday 18 November at 17:00 
  • Australia vs New Zealand – Thursday 18 November at 19:30 
  • Semi-final 1: Group B Winner vs Group A Runner-Up – Monday 22 November at 17:00 
  • Semi-final 2: Group A Winner vs Group B Runner-Up – Monday 22 November at 19:30 

For more information visit    


Notes to Editor 

Rugby League World Cup 2021 

The Rugby League World Cup is the pinnacle major event of rugby league, globally contested every four years. RLWC2021 will be a breakthrough moment in the tournament’s history with the men’s, women’s and wheelchair competitions being staged together for the first time. 

The three tournaments will take place across 21 venues throughout England. Both the women’s and wheelchair competitions will be contested by two groups of four teams, whilst the men’s tournament will see 16 teams compete across four groups.  

RLWC2021 will be the most visible rugby league event in history with all 61 games in the men’s, women’s and wheelchair competitions being broadcast live on the BBC. 

Vision: Delivering the biggest and best ever Rugby League World Cup. 

Mission: Creating inspirational moments that excite, engage, and leave a long-lasting legacy. 

Make It York  
Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business.  The company’s remit covers leisure and business tourism, city centre management, festivals and events, business support and inward investment. 

For further information please contact: 

Amy Goodman – Consumer Communications Manager 

Ana Ignatova – Communications Executive 

York residents and visitors set for a ‘Summer of Sport’ with summer-long programme of city centre activities

  • New interactive sporty sculpture trail launches 9th July with sports themed installations across city centre 
  • Free weekly Yoga classes, urban running routes and outdoor ping-pong tables  
  • New outdoor hospitality including pop-up THOR’s tipi bars, YO1 Beach Club and street food village 
  • ‘First Summer Day’ adult ticket introduced by First Bus York 
  • Downloadable map and summer hub available at  

A series of fun summer activities will be taking place across the city centre over the next few months, all under a ‘Summer of Sport’ theme. In a collaboration between Make It York, THOR’s Tipi and First Bus York, plans include an interactive sporty sculpture trail, pop-up tipi bars, urban running routes, free yoga classes, outdoor ping pong tables and more.   

A ‘Summer of Sport’ map bringing together all the city centre activity is available for download here and a new hub has been created on the Visit York website bringing together activities from local businesses:  

Six interactive sports-themed sculptures will be installed across the city centre from 9th July until 5th September – offering fun photo opportunities for residents and visitors to get involved in. From celebrating on a winner’s podium and driving a racing car, to posing with weights, the trail aims to get people moving around the city to enjoy the installations and share pictures on social media using #SummerinYork. Trail sponsors include York BID, Middletons Hotel, First Bus York, York City Knights and St Peter’s York.  

From 21st June until 5th September a pop-up THOR’s Tipi bar will be on Parliament Street offering a range of tropical-inspired drinks, cosy evenings around fire pits, and weekend DJ sets. THOR’s will be joined on Parliament Street by a variety of York-based food vendors – including Yuzu Street Food, KREP, Shambles Kitchen, Sloppy’s Burgers, Stam & Maria and The York Roast Co.  

The colourful new outdoor seating will also remain across the city to provide spaces for people to buy food and drink from local businesses and soak up the atmosphere of the city with friends and family.  

Until 5th September, residents and visitors can also enjoy the new YO1 Beach Club  – a brand-new family-friendly space located in Tower Gardens designed to be a fun and safe urban oasis. Produced by Coopers Marquees, the space includes a wood-panelled covered café and veranda with a boardwalk entrance across a beach area styled with striped deckchairs, bunting, and lobster pots. Four brightly coloured beach huts on the sand serve teas and coffees, ice creams, as well as beach apparel and toys. There is also an open barbeque serving a choice of delicious grilled food as well as a menu for kids.  

Continuing with the sporty theme, outdoor ping-ping tables sponsored by JORVIK Viking Centre will be located on Parliament Street which residents and visitors can use for free and free yoga classes will also take place in THOR’s tipi each week in partnership with Emperor’s Gym. Kicking off from 14th July, the classes will run each Wednesday (07.30AM -08.30AM) and Friday (08.30AM – 09.30AM) with pre-booking required by email to For runners, two urban running routes have been devised in partnership with York Knavesmire Harriers – taking in all the best city centre sights over a 5K and 10K route.  

Ashley Young, Senior Marketing and Communications Manager at Make It York said: 

“We are very excited to launch our ‘Summer of Sport’ activity which brings together everything from walking tours, running routes and yoga, to sporty sculptures and ping pong.  With the Euros, Olympics, Wimbledon all taking place this summer, and the Rugby League World Cup coming to York later in the year, the ‘Summer of Sport’ theme takes inspiration from these events and celebrates us all as ‘winners’, as we come out of what has been a difficult year. 

“It’s been great to work with a range of local businesses and partner organisations to curate this summer-long programme of activity which will ensure a vibrant and animated city centre, with lots going on for residents and visitors to enjoy. Supporting local businesses remains key and we look forward to welcoming people back into the city centre to enjoy the York’s wonderful attractions, retail and hospitality offer.”  

Amanda Monaghan, Director THOR’s Tipi said: 

“We’ve loved being involved in the planning for ‘York Summer of Sport’. We’ve worked with many different local artists and businesses on the activities and the sense of community has been brilliant. We’re also excited to be back on Parliament St with THOR’S tipi bar and can’t wait for the city centre to come to life!” 

The ‘Summer of Sport’ activity is being delivered in partnership with First Bus York as part of its ongoing support for local business and community initiatives to bring people back to the city. And by inspiring a ‘cleaner & greener’ York, the aim is to promote sustainable travel – encouraging residents and visitors to travel by bus, cycle or walk wherever possible to enjoy the city centre offer throughout summer.  

John Godfrey, Head of Marketing at First Bus York said: 

“We want to connect people to destinations and experiences. And we’re making it easy to discover the Summer of Sport again and again with a new adult day ticket giving unlimited travel at weekends and on-bus information about how to get to these fabulous events and attractions. 

“This is another reason for residents and tourists to get into the city centre, shop local and support York’s retail, hospitality and leisure businesses throughout summer.” 

Adam Wardale, General Manager at Middletons Hotel, York said: 

“We’re delighted to be partnering with Make It York and local businesses to support the reopening of York and promote the unique offering of this beautiful city. As life slowly returns to normal, taking time out to focus on personal wellbeing is more important than ever, and so Emperors Gym at Middletons is proud to offer complimentary yoga classes for the Summer of Sport.” 

Live sport will be aired throughout the city centre at various venues – including Spark:York’s big screen for England’s Euro 2020 matches (ticketed), Wimbledon screenings at Coppergate, and many more pubs and bars across the city. For more information about the Summer events in the city and live sport screenings go to  

Download the Summer of Sport map sponsored by First Bus York at or pick up printed copies in the Visitor Information Centre at 1 Museum Street.  


Notes to Editor 

Make It York  
Make It York’s purpose is to develop and promote the city and its surroundings – nationally and internationally – as a vibrant and attractive place to live, visit, study, work and do business.  The company’s remit covers leisure and business tourism, city centre management, festivals and events, business support and inward investment. 

For further information please contact: 

Amy Goodman – Consumer Communications Manager 

Ana Ignatova – Communications Executive 

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