Looking for a loan? Apply here!
Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors

Barking and Dagenham’s Best Christmas Activities 2023

Barking and Dagenham’s Best Christmas Activities 2023.

With most people having a few days off over the coming weeks, we’ve taken a look at some of the best activities Barking and Dagenham have to offer this Christmas.

Christmas comes but once a year and after what has been a pretty difficult 12 months for many, people are ready to make the most of it with some days out between now and the New Year.

But with so many seasonal events taking place in Barking and Dagenham in December, where should you go? Here are a few of our suggestions:

Barking Mad About Christmas!

Santa will be making a special visit to Barking on Saturday 2 December to celebrate Barking Mad About Christmas, a festive event taking place in Barking Town Square and Barking Learning Centre from 11am to 5pm.

With Christmas carols, crafts and workshops, wreath making, live music and lots more entertainment besides, this is an event the whole family will enjoy!

It’s free to see Santa but arrive early to avoid disappointment!

Mayor’s Caribbean Christmas Fundraiser.

Christmas is a time for giving so why not embrace the spirit of the season and join the Mayor of Barking and Dagenham, Councillor Donna Lumsden, at her Christmas fundraising event, A Caribbean Christmas!

Taking place on Friday 8 December from 7.30pm to 11pm at Dagenham and Redbridge Football Club in Dagenham, tickets are £45 and include a welcome drink, main course, dessert and entertainment.

All proceeds from the event will be donated to Carers of Barking and Dagenham to enable them to continue providing their essential services to those who need them most. 

To book tickets, please contact mayor@lbbd.gov.uk for a booking form.

Valence House Christmas Market.

If you usually leave present shopping until the last possible minute, the Valance House Christmas Market is here to help you change your ways!

Taking place at the Valence House museum in Dagenham on Saturday 9 December from 11am to 5pm, the market is free to attend and will be filled to the brim with local community stallholders selling presents for all the family.

There’ll also be plenty of festive food and drink, a Christmas Farm where visitors can meet a wide range of animals, a reindeer hunt and lots more to keep both young and old entertained.

Staying in control of your finances this Christmas.

However you decide to spend the festive period, we can help make it more affordable with one of our Christmas Loans. For more information and to see how much you could borrow, click here.

Black Friday & Cyber Monday 2023 – Everything You Need To Know.

Black Friday & Cyber Monday 2023 – Everything You Need To Know.

One of the world’s busiest shopping days is nearly upon us again but how can you make the most of it?

Taking place on the first Friday after Thanksgiving, Black Friday is an historically American event that used to mark the beginning of the Christmas shopping season and give high street retailers the opportunity to get their finances ‘out of the red and into the black’.

These days, however, Black Friday takes place in countries all over the world, both in stores and online, and is one of the most eagerly anticipated days of the year among bargain hunters and shopaholics alike, with everything from clothes to homeware to brand new tech all available for less.

And, in fact, it no longer takes place for just 24 hours, with many retailers offering deals over the entire week leading up to Black Friday itself (which, this year, takes place on Friday, November 24th) and often for another week afterwards, in celebration of Cyber Monday, Black Friday’s formerly online-only equivalent.

What this all means is that the 2-weeks surrounding Black Friday represent a fantastic opportunity to save money on items you’ll be buying for your nearest and dearest for Christmas or for yourself as a treat.

Despite reports suggesting that UK consumers are expected to spend approximately 25% less on Black Friday than they did in 2022, 51% of Brits are still planning to hit the sales this year. So what are the best ways to beat the crowds and make sure you pick up some bargains? Here are our top-tips.

1. Do your research

Whatever you’re in the market for, do some investigating to find out the good from the bad before the sales begin. You’re better off paying slightly more for a good quality product than slightly less for something that will need replacing in six months.

The same goes for brands too – familiarise yourself with the best and worst reviewed brands early and you’ll be able to tell the bargains from the ‘best avoided’ once the sales begin.

2. Make a list

Both online and in shops, Black Friday is almost always busy, so make a shopping list of the things you want, as well as what everyone wants for Christmas, and keep it with you at all times. With multiple discounts and offers vying for your attention, having a list handy will keep you focussed.

3. Know your price history

Similar to point #1 and especially important if you’re in the market for a specific item, knowing its pre-sale RRP will help you work out whether any sale prices represent good value for money or not. Checking to see if the product you’re after has been on sale recently and, if so, how much for is also worth considering.

4. Make a list of retailers that sell the item you want

With the days around Black Friday being so busy, it’s not unusual for websites to crash due to heavy traffic or shops to sell out of certain products. If this happens while you’re trying to buy something, knowing which other stockists sell the item you want will give you a headstart on other shoppers and increase your chances of still landing that bargain.

5. Set up online accounts now!

By entering your billing and delivery details in advance, you’ll be able to complete any transactions and check out quickly and easily before the best sale items start disappearing online, giving you the upper hand if multiple shoppers are after the same items as you.

6. Look at the price, not the saving

Some items spend more time on sale than they do at full price, so treat discounts with suspicion and never pay more than you’re willing to for something just because it offers a supposed ‘saving’.

For example, if you have £50 set aside for an electrical item, don’t be tempted to spend £75 on it just because it’s reduced from £150 – there’s a fair chance it won’t actually have been on sale at full price since it first launched.

7. Charge your phone before hitting the shops

In the era of smartphones, you can shop in two places at once so make sure your phone has as close to 100% battery before you head to the high street so you can really shop around. Then, when you’re browsing the aisles in Currys, you can compare prices against online retailers to ensure you get the best possible price.

8. Sign up to newsletters

Most retailers have newsletters you can subscribe to for free and doing so in advance of Black Friday can be a shrewd idea as they might well offer you early access to deals or additional discounts on certain items.

9. Monitor social media

As well as signing up for their newsletters, it’s a good idea to also follow your favourite retailers and brands on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, as these are often the first places their offers are advertised.

Happy shopping!

It can be easy to overspend when big sales roll around and there are none bigger than Black Friday but so long as you stick to a budget you can afford, the coming weeks should offer plenty of opportunities to save money on items you’ll be buying in time for Christmas.

If you need help paying for items in the run-up to Christmas, we offer small loans of £250 to our members and joining our credit union couldn’t be simpler – for more information, click here.



Boosting Employee Performance and Engagement: The Power of Payroll Saving and Loans

Boosting Employee Performance and Engagement: The Power of Payroll Saving and Loans

As we celebrate Happiness at Work Week, it’s essential to recognise that employees’ financial well-being plays a pivotal role in their overall happiness and job satisfaction. 

Financial stress is a significant source of anxiety for many individuals. According to surveys, it ranks as one of the top causes of stress for employees. When employees are preoccupied with their financial struggles, it can negatively affect their performance and engagement at work, so we’re taking a look at the ways in which payroll saving and loans can help alleviate these concerns: 

Financial stability through payroll saving. 

One of the most effective ways to enhance financial wellbeing is by encouraging employees to save a portion of their income regularly. Payroll saving allows employees to automate their savings, ensuring that they consistently set money aside for emergencies, retirement or other financial goals. 

By partnering with a credit union like ours, employers can facilitate this process, making it easy for employees to allocate a portion of their salary to a savings account. This financial stability can reduce the stress associated with unexpected expenses, giving employees peace of mind and allowing them to focus better on their job responsibilities. 

Access to responsible loans. 

Life is full of unexpected challenges, and sometimes employees may require financial assistance to overcome them. In such cases, offering access to responsible loans can be a game-changer.  

At Leeds Credit Union, we provide employees with the opportunity to access loans with competitive interest rates, flexible repayment terms and responsible lending practices. 

When employees know they have a reliable source of affordable credit, they are less likely to turn to high-interest payday loans or accumulate debt on high-interest credit cards. This peace of mind can help them stay focused on their work and maintain a higher level of job satisfaction. 

Improved financial literacy. 

In addition to providing financial products, many credit unions also offer financial education resources. By offering workshops, webinars or one-on-one consultations, employees can enhance their financial literacy and make more informed decisions about their money.  

When employees have a better understanding of their finances, they are more likely to manage their money wisely, reduce debt and achieve their financial goals. This, in turn, can lead to reduced stress, increased job satisfaction and higher levels of engagement at work. 

Leeds Credit Union – we’re here to help. 

During Happiness at Work Week, let’s remember that a happy and engaged workforce is a productive one. By addressing employees’ financial wellbeing through payroll saving and loans, employers can create an environment where employees feel more secure, less stressed and better equipped to perform at their best. 

At Leeds Credit Union, we are committed to helping both individuals and businesses in Leeds and the surrounding areas improve their financial wellbeing. By partnering with us, employers can take a significant step towards enhancing their employees’ performance, engagement and overall happiness at work.  

If you’re interested in exploring how payroll saving and loans can benefit your employees and organisation, click here. 

Preparing For The New School Year.

The summer holidays are nearly over so we’re looking at the ways in which parents can reduce the cost of sending their kids back to school.

With the new school year just around the corner, parents across the UK are beginning the annual task of ensuring their little ones are fully equipped.

But with the nation still in the throes of a cost-of-living crisis, the prospect of forking out hundreds of pounds for school uniforms and new equipment is likely to be giving many parents sleepless nights.

And that figure is no exaggeration; according to the Schoolwear Association, the average cost of compulsory secondary school uniform in England in 2023 is £96.24 per pupil.

While new laws around schools helping parents clothe their kids for less should help cut some of the cost, there are other ways to keep the expense of buying uniforms manageable. These include:

Shopping at supermarkets.

Most supermarkets have good-sized clothing sections these days and many of them do an excellent line in school uniforms. So long as your child’s school allows generic clothing, plain coloured items with no badges or branding can be picked up at massively reduced prices.

If your child does require clothing with a logo, it may be possible to buy a generic item of clothing and iron or sew a badge on yourself.

Hit the sales.

Retailers like Sainsburys and Marks & Spencer offer clothing discounts across their entire ranges a few times a year. Check out what offers are currently available online and, if you get your timing right, you could get as much as 25% off the cost of a school uniform.

Buy second-hand uniforms from your child’s school.

If you’re lucky, your child’s school will host second-hand uniform sales a few times a year, enabling you to pick up everything they’ll need for the next 12 months at a fraction of the first-hand price.

School or council support.

Although funding cuts have made it harder for councils and state-run schools to provide grants for school uniforms, some councils and schools do still offer financial support. Use the Government’s postcode checker tool to see if your local council can help, or contact your children’s school directly.

Look for a bargain online.

eBay and Facebook Marketplace often throw up offers that look too good to be true, so remember to check their websites regularly. And don’t dawdle if you do see something useful – good deals usually get snapped up in no time at all.

When it comes to equipment, your little one’s needs will vary depending on whether they attend primary or secondary school but the items of equipment most commonly required are:


Although plenty of schoolwork is done on computers and laptops these days, schoolchildren are still expected to carry an extensive list of stationery items with them. The essentials include:

Pencil sharpener
Pencil case
Set square
Glue stick

The good news is that stationery is both relatively inexpensive and long-lasting. Retailers like WHSmiths and Rymans usually have sales or multi-buy offers on back-to-school essentials during August and early September so keep an eye on their websites and take advantage of any bargains to keep your costs down.

It’s also worth asking family and friends with kids who have left school if they have any kit left over that you could buy used or just take off their hands. Similarly, charity shops often have plenty of equipment to choose from, as do pound shops and online marketplaces.

The cheapest way to pick up specialist maths equipment is to buy it as a set, while basic calculators can be picked up from most supermarkets from as little as £10.

Electronics and accessories.

If you need to buy your child a laptop, you’ll want to get one that’s light enough for them to carry around, small enough to be easily transportable and that holds enough charge to get them through a school day.

If the cost of buying a new laptop is prohibitive, don’t worry – refurbished laptops are easily available in shops and online and offer an affordable way to purchase a high specification laptop at a reduced price. Check out Refurbished Laptops for high quality devices that have been tested to guarantee they’re as good as new and wiped clean of previous data.

Other essentials.

Other items you might need to pick up include backpacks, lunchboxes and water bottles.

Sports Direct currently has a sale on backpacks, with sports-mad children sure to find something suitable at a reasonable price, while Amazon has an enormous selection with something to suit every budget. Amazon also offers the widest range and excellent value for money on lunchboxes and water bottles.

Back to school September 2023.

If you’re a parent, the fact that the new school year also means a new set of costs is something you’re probably all too familiar with.

If you’re concerned about how you’ll pay for new uniforms and equipment this year, our Family Loans allow you to borrow as much as £1,000 to help cover the cost. For more information, click here.

Best Ways To Celebrate Yorkshire Day

Fancy celebrating Yorkshire Day with an inexpensive day out somewhere in the county? Here are our top 5 suggestions.

There’s no better time to get out and enjoy Yorkshire’s plethora of amazing attractions and natural wonders than summer. And, with Yorkshire Day – the annual opportunity to officially celebrate all things Yorkshire – fast approaching (it’s on August 1st), not seizing the opportunity to check out one of the region’s incredible destinations over the coming weeks would be nigh on unforgivable.

From open-air sculpture parks to ancient abbeys, Yorkshire has something for everyone, so don’t delay – start planning your next trip out today!

Yorkshire Wildlife Park

Lions? Check!

Tigers? Check!

Bears? Check!

If you love exotic animals, there’s no better place to spend a sunny summer’s day than by exploring Yorkshire Wildlife Park.

With more than 475 animals to see, including capybaras, zebras, rhinos, sea lions and more, plus daily shows and feeding sessions hosted by the friendly and knowledgeable staff, Yorkshire Wildlife Park is ideal for animal lovers of all ages.

Ticket prices vary but are around £20 per person, with under 3s going free. However, you can get £5 off per person when booking online in advance!

Yorkshire Wildlife Park, Hurst Lane, Auckley, Doncaster, South Yorkshire. DN9 3HQ.

Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Alongside 500+ acres of rolling countryside, Yorkshire Sculpture Park is also home to more than 100 open air sculptures and installations.

From Barbara Hepworth’s ‘Squares with Two Circles’ to Henry Moore’s ‘Large Two Forms’, you can see the work of the greats in an incredible setting. Often with a free-roaming sheep or two strolling right alongside you!

A dog-friendly space with plenty of cafes and food and drink outlets, plus a children’s play area and a huge, picturesque lake, the Sculpture Park is free for under 25s, while standard tickets are just £9. If you like leisurely walks, picnics and fabulous scenery, this is the place for you.

Yorkshire Sculpture Park, West Bretton, Wakefield, West Yorkshire. WF4 4LG.

Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden

Studley Royal Park was one of the first sites to be inscribed into the UNESCO World Heritage Site listings in 1986 – and it’s just as beautiful today as it was then.

At over 900 years old, the abbey offers a unique glimpse into the past and the park was built around it, creating a wonderful open space that’s filled with character at every turn. There are over 800 acres to explore here, with incredible vistas and secluded spots where you can escape the bustle of day-to-day life and relax with a book, a picnic or even a snooze!

Adult tickets cost £18, while kids cost £9, however family tickets are available and can help lower the cost of entry depending on how many people are in your party.

Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden, Ripon, North Yorkshire. HG4 3DY.

Thorp Perrow

Home to one of the UK’s finest collections of trees, not to mention a spectacular Tea Room and The Bird of Prey and Mammal Centre, Thorp Perrow is a Victorian arboretum spread over a whopping 100 acres.

The perfect place to leave your phone turned off as you get back to nature, at Thorp Perrow you’ll find birds of prey in flight and wallabies roaming freely through the woods. Throw in an excellent adventure playground for the kids and you’ve got a genuine ‘must-visit’ attraction for all the family!

Adult tickets cost £13.95, while under 4s go free.

Thorp Perrow, Bedale, North Yorkshire. DL8 2PS.

The Forbidden Corner

Tucked away in the already-majestic Yorkshire Dales is The Forbidden Corner, one of the region’s most beloved, bonkers attractions. It’s not known as ‘The Strangest Place In The World’ for nothing!

Home to a labyrinth of underground tunnels, chambers and surprises, with plenty of dead ends to keep you on your toes, The Forbidden Corner invites you to work your way through four acres of gardens, where you’ll encounter weird and wonderful statues, stunning water features and breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside.

Adult tickets are £16.50, kids tickets are £14.50 and kids under 3 go free.

The Forbidden Corner, Middleham, Leyburn, North Yorkshire. DL8 4TJ.

Happy Yorkshire Day from Leeds Credit Union!

Nothing beats time spent outside in the open air, so why not make the most of Yorkshire Day and head for the great outdoors and a new adventure?

If the cost of living crisis is making the cost of days out like these prohibitive, find out how one of our affordable family loans could help you by clicking here.

Celebrating ‘Love Parks Week’

Taking place from July 28th to August 6th, Love Parks Week 2023 is UK-based environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy’s annual campaign that celebrates parks, green spaces and the people that look after them.

Excellent places to connect with nature and get some fresh air, exercise or peace and quiet, spending time in parks – or any pleasant outdoor space – can also benefit our mental health, so ensuring they’re well taken care of and accessible to all is extremely important – and most of all, free to enjoy!

Anyone living in and around Leeds knows there are no end of wonderful parks in our region, so which ones should you prioritise visiting over Love Parks Week 2023? We take a look!

Roundhay Park

One of the biggest city parks anywhere in Europe, Roundhay Park sets an incredibly high standard for all other Yorkshire parks to live up to. 

And with 700 acres of lush and beautiful parkland, woodland, gardens and lakes, plus playgrounds and a skate park for kids, it’s easy to see why. 

The park is also home to a massive amount of wildlife, including deer, rabbits, foxes, swans and woodpeckers, so visitors are pretty much guaranteed to see something special while they make their way around one of its five different trails.

Roundhay Park, Roundhay, Leeds. LS8 2ER.

Beckett Park

Tucked away in the bustling suburb of Headingley is Beckett Park, an oasis of calm among the area’s high-energy vibe.

Featuring plenty of wide open spaces lined with cherry blossoms and other trees, it’s the perfect place to enjoy a spot of sunbathing or ball games when the weather’s fine. It’s also a great spot for a walk whatever the weather, with wooded areas carpeted with bluebells and even a hidden monument to Queen Victoria!

Beckett Park, Churchwood Avenue, Headingley, Leeds. LS16 5LF.

Pudsey Park

Home to more than seven acres of grassland, sprawling gardens and a huge variety of trees, it’s no surprise that the award-winning Pudsey Park is one of Leeds’ most popular green spaces.

Walkers will have a great time strolling around the Gothic-style Church of St Lawrence, while those with a competitive edge can enjoy a game of bowls on the green and music-lovers can take in live music from the park’s traditional bandstand.

Throw in a large playground and a skatepark to keep younger family members entertained and you’ve got a park that can comfortably call itself one of Yorkshire’s best days out.

Pudsey Park, Church Lane, Pudsey, Leeds. LS28 7RR.

Gotts Park

Looking for Leeds’ best place to exercise in the fresh air? Look no further than Armley’s own Gotts Park.

Spread over 74 acres of green spaces, gardens and woodland, Gotts Park is a must for fitness fans. Boasting numerous picturesque walks around the likes of a Grade II-listed fountain and a war memorial, not to mention an 18-hole golf course at the nearby Gotts Park Mansion, this is a brilliant place to get out and get active.

If you’re feeling particularly brave, you could even tackle the notorious ‘Killer Steps’ – a set of 161 Victorian steps that are guaranteed to test your limits!

Gotts Park, Armley Ridge Road, Leeds. LS12 2QX.

Hyde Park 

Also known as Woodhouse Moor, Hyde Park is another of the region’s most popular public parks and one of the oldest.

Boasting five breath-taking, tree-lined avenues that meet in the centre, Hyde Park provides visitors with jaw-dropping views of Kirkstall Valley and the opportunity to enjoy a stroll around a plethora of Victorian statues.

In addition to all the open grassland, Hyde Park is also home to allotments, tennis courts and a skatepark, meaning it has something for everyone to enjoy.

Woodhouse Moor, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds. LS6 1SJ.

Enjoy Love Parks Week with Leeds Credit Union! 

Although entry to these parks are free, we know that days out to public spaces usually incur some costs for families to bear. If you need a small loan to help you cover your expenses this summer, you can apply to borrow as much as £1,000 with one of our Family Loans by clicking here.

How to Host the Perfect BBQ

How to Host the Perfect BBQ

Wherever there’s sun, there’s usually someone firing up a barbecue and this year, we think it should be YOU! 

To celebrate summer’s arrival, we want to help you amaze and delight your friends and family by throwing the best BBQ party they’ve ever attended, so dig out your apron and fire up the grill – it’s time to get cookin’.

Keep it simple

There’s a reason you don’t often see people in suits at barbecues – they’re supposed to be casual, so make sure yours is a relaxed affair. Try to host it on a day when the sun’s shining and that will do a lot of the hard work for you; after that, you just need to provide plenty of seating and/or space in your garden and keep the food and drinks coming.

Speaking of which…

What to serve

It’s a barbecue so burgers and sausages are non-negotiable. You could also consider steaks, kebabs or chicken drumsticks if you think your carnivorous guests need more options too. And always go for quality over quantity – 10 top quality burgers are better than 20 bland ones.

As for vegetarians, roasted veggie skewers or meat-free burgers and sausages are always a safe bet.

You’ll also need some sides to serve with your mains. A couple of large bowls of salad, some loaves of garlic bread, coleslaw and a variety of sauces will suffice. Stocking up on crisps/crackers/breadsticks and dips so your guests have something to nibble on while the food is cooking is a good idea too, as is getting plenty of cheese and lettuce for those who want toppings on their burgers.

If you’re going to serve dessert, keep it summery with some ice cream or classic strawberries and cream.

In terms of beverages, you’ll want to keep your fridge well stocked. If you’re serving alcohol, you’ll have a decent idea of how much everyone will drink but most people will generally have one or two drinks per hour. If you’re concerned about the cost of alcohol making the barbecue too expensive, why not ask your guests to bring their own?

Non-alcoholic options are important too, so have jugs of iced water (or fruit infused water) dotted around, as well as lemonade or iced tea in the fridge. Remember to make plenty of ice cubes in advance or buy a bag of ice just before the party begins too – the last thing you want is your guests overheating.

What other items do I need?

Napkins, paper plates, reusable plastic cups and cutlery are all essential, as are suitable lighting if the party’s likely to continue into the evening. String lights are inexpensive and can be easily draped along fencing or on low tree branches to create an ambient atmosphere.

You’ll also need to create a suitable playlist to set the mood, put a smile on people’s faces and keep things upbeat. It’s your party so you get to choose what makes the cut but make sure there’s something for everyone. A few cheesy classics everyone knows the words to never go amiss – just remember to keep the volume at a level that won’t upset your neighbours and will allow your guests to have a conversation without shouting.

You may also want to think about providing a few games, especially if children will be present. If you have the room, lawn games like swingball, croquet or cricket are always popular; if not, buying cheap water pistols for kids and decks of cards for adults is an easy win.

Where to get hold of a new bbq

If you’re in the market for a new barbecue, check out this ‘Best BBQ 2023’ article from Ideal Home magazine for suggestions on bringing your garden kitchen to life, whatever your budget.

Before you make a purchase though, it’s worth asking yourself how often you’re realistically likely to use your BBQ. If the answer is ‘once a year at most’, it might be worth foregoing a more expensive option and investing in some disposable ones from your local supermarket instead.

The benefits of BBQs

That’s right, not only are they delicious but barbecues are also fairly unique in that they can benefit both physical and mental wellbeing.  

For starters, using a barbecue reduces fat intake as much of it drips through the grates and onto the bottom of the grill during cooking – good news for your cholesterol levels.

By cooking slower and at a lower temperature, barbecued food also preserves its key vitamins and minerals better than many other cooking methods, helping your body turn the food into energy and allowing you to maintain a healthy diet.

Attending a barbecue party is also good for your mental health as studies have shown that interacting with others boosts feelings of well-being, improves your mood and decreases feelings of depression. Talk about a win-win!

Cook up a storm with Leeds Credit Union

Whether you want to invest in a brand new barbecue or just need a hand getting your garden ready for summer, you could borrow from £250 to £25,000 with one of our tailored loans. To find out more, click here.

Summer Events Guide 2023

Summer Events Guide 2023

Barely a day goes by without an exciting event taking place in Leeds. From arts and music, to food and live sport, ours is a city with plenty going on.

Now summer’s here, the local events calendar looks even busier than usual. But with so many excellent ways to fill your days, which are the events that you really can’t afford to miss? We take a look, with our guide to the best Yorkshire summer events 2023!

Sounds Of The City

West Yorkshire’s annual series of cracking musical events returns, with this year’s lineup among the best ever!

Taking place at Millennium Square from July 6th – 15th, acts confirmed for SOTC 2023 include Kasabian, Blossoms, Bastille, McFly, Shed Seven and more. 

A family-friendly affair, Sounds Of The City is perfect for music-loving mums and dads, and energetic kids who just love to make some noise! Tickets are available here, with prices varying from show to show.

Millennium Square, Leeds. LS2 3AD.

All Creatures Great And Small

If your kids love everything to do with animals, add Temple Newsam to your list of places to visit this summer.

With All Creatures Great And Small, visitors can celebrate the animals of Temple Newsam, from the rare breed animals at the site’s Home Farm, to animal portraits inside the astonishing Tudor-Jacobean house itself.

There are a huge range of trails and activities for visitors to enjoy, as well as a legendary play area and mile after mile of gorgeous parkland, so pack a picnic and head on over from 22nd July until 3rd September (except Mondays). 

Temple Newsam, Temple Newsam Rd, Leeds. LS15 0AE.

Behind The Scenes Tour of Leeds Discovery Centre

Anyone looking for a free day out can stop looking – Leeds Discovery Centre is hosting a series of guided tours around Leeds Museum & Galleries’ collection store!

A purpose-built display storage facility that houses more than one million objects in climate-controlled conditions, the store is a treasure trove of toys, taxidermy animals, skeletons, furniture, clothing, textiles, and archaeology from Leeds, Yorkshire and around the world. 

The first tour begins at 1:00 pm on July 25th, with plenty more taking place over the summer holidays. Entry is free but booking is essential. Contact 0113 378 2100 or email discovery.centre@leeds.gov.uk to make a reservation.

Leeds Discovery Centre, Carlisle Rd, Leeds. LS10 1LB.

Outdoor Theatre: The Secret Garden

Taking place at Lotherton Hall – one of West Yorkshire’s most popular country houses – on August 5th, the Outdoor Theatre series is presented by the renowned Chapterhouse Theatre Company and does exactly what it says on the tin: enables you to watch a play outdoors!

A fantastic trip out for families in particular, Lotherton Hall’s beautiful gardens provide the perfect backdrop against which to watch this production of one of the most popular children’s books of all time – Frances Burnett Hodgson’s The Secret Garden. And if the sun’s out, it’ll be truly jaw-dropping!

The story centres around a young girl who is sent to live at her uncle’s house in the countryside, where mysteries, new friends and magical creatures lurk around every corner. Entry is free for children aged four and under and tickets are available here.

Lotherton Hall, Off Collier Lane, Aberford, Leeds. LS25 3EB.

Get budgeting help this summer

At Leeds Credit Union, we know that finding extra money to pay for days out over the summer holidays can be a stressful experience. We can help with budgeting and provide you with access to a range of loans and savings accounts. For more information, click here.

Gift Ideas for Father’s Day 2023

Gift Ideas for Father’s Day 2023

Sunday June 18th is Father’s Day, a day to celebrate your dear old dad and thank him for all the hours he spent raising you, helping you, teaching you and of course playing taxi for you for many years.

Most dads claim they don’t want anyone to go to any bother when it comes to getting them something for their birthday or Christmas but don’t be fooled, dads love a present as much as everybody else. This Father’s Day, why not get him something he’ll love with the help of our handy gift guide?

£20 and under

Beard Buddy Shaving Apron

If your dad is the sort who leaves his beard blocking the plug hole every time he shaves, this is a present the whole family can enjoy!

A convenient apron that attaches to the mirror to stop rogue hairs ending up all over the place during a shave, the Beard Buddy is washable, adjustable and comes with a storage bag.

Dad Joke Book

The only thing dads love more than a good joke is a good dad joke, i.e. the sort of joke that’s so unoriginal and/or unfunny that it actually is somehow kind of funny. 

If your dad could do with adding a few new weapons to his gag arsenal, this bestselling dad joke book should be right up his street.

Dumbbell Beer Glass

Does your dad enjoy a beer? Does he wish he had more free time so he could do more exercise? If the answer to these questions is ‘yes’ (even though you suspect that if he did have more spare time, he’d just use it to take more naps) then this dumbbell beer glass is the gift you’ve been looking for!

Made of high-quality glass, this not-so-little beauty will hold just over a pint of your old man’s favourite tipple and every time he does a rep with it, he can reward himself by taking a swig. Talk about a win-win!

£20 – £50

Fumebar air freshener

OK, an air freshener isn’t the first thing that sprang to our minds when we started thinking about gifts for dads but hear us out – this smart bit of kit might just revolutionise the dad-car industry.

A slim, slate grey diffuser that attaches discreetly to any of his car’s air vents, the Fumebar is a refillable cylinder that pumps out one of two dad-friendly scents to make his car smell nice and/or mask the whiff of his old trainers.

Portable Record Player

Although some dads have grown up consuming their music digitally, most still remember – and secretly yearn for – the good old days when you had to go to a shop and buy a CD or a record if you wanted to hear your favourite band’s new album.

If your dad fits into that category, this retro-looking record player is an inexpensive way to transport him back to those simpler times. Featuring built-in speakers, a suitcase design and a carry handle, your old man will be up in the loft digging out his old Rolling Stones vinyl in no time. If he tries to make you listen to Jethro Tull though, get the fuck outta there.

Laphroaig Single Malt Scotch Whisky

A delicious, refined whisky that almost any dad would be happy to sip from start to finish (although hopefully not in one sitting…), this particular offering from Laphroaig won gold at the San Francisco World Spirits Awards as recently as 2019.

With notes of oak, peat and sweetness, it’s the perfect drink to enjoy with family and friends after dinner, either on its own or with your dad’s favourite mixer.


Ooni Pizza Oven

Dads love pizzas, gadgets and cooking outdoors, so this tidy little pizza oven might be the pinnacle of Father’s Day presents.

A portable, wood-fired pizza oven that reaches 500°C in under 20 minutes and cooks pizzas to smoky perfection in as little as 60 seconds, Oonis also come with a three-year guarantee and the option of a whole host of accessories. If you ask us, all dads ought to come with one of these as standard.

Best of British Car Driving Experience

Not just one car but THREE!

That’s right, if your dad fancies himself as his generation’s Lewis Hamilton, he’ll be in his element taking each of three iconic British cars out for a three mile drive. With six cars to choose between – including an Aston Martin DB5 and an E-Type Jaguar – and an instructor by his side to stop him getting too carried away, this is an experience your dad will never forget.

The Butcher’s Breakfast Box

Fortnum & Mason is renowned for its incredibly good food so you can guarantee your dad will love this box full of breakfast brilliance.

Bursting with specially selected bacon, sausages, eggs, salted butter, sourdough bread, tomato sauce, tea and coffee, the only downside is that every other cooked breakfast he’ll ever have will be pale in comparison.

Need a helping hand for Father’s Day 2023?

At Leeds Credit Union, we can help you get your finances in order with one of our tailored loans, whether you need £250 or £25,000. Apply for yours here.

Budget-Friendly Tips for Enjoying a Summer Holiday in 2023

Embrace the Sun: Budget-Friendly Tips for Enjoying a Summer Holiday

The summer season calls for relaxation, exploration, and unforgettable memories. However, planning a summer holiday can sometimes be daunting, especially when trying to stay within a budget. But fear not! With a bit of careful financial planning, you can embark on a memorable summer holiday without breaking the bank. 

In this blog post, we’ll guide you through some budget-friendly tips for enjoying a summer holiday while highlighting how Leeds Credit Union can help you spread the cost with our affordable loan options.

Set a realistic budget:

Begin your holiday planning by establishing a realistic budget. Determine the amount you can comfortably afford to spend on your vacation. Consider your income, savings, and any additional funds you can allocate.

Choose affordable destinations:

There are plenty of fantastic holiday destinations that offer exciting experiences without draining your wallet. Research destinations known for their affordability, such as hidden gems, off-peak locations, or budget-friendly countries. Opt for destinations with low-cost accommodation options, affordable local transportation, and reasonably priced attractions. By choosing wisely, you can enjoy a memorable holiday without sacrificing your budget.

Flexibility in travel dates:

Being flexible with your travel dates can result in significant savings. Consider travelling during weekdays or outside peak seasons when airfares and accommodations tend to be more affordable. Utilise travel comparison websites to find the best deals and be open to adjusting your plans slightly to secure cost-effective options.

Embrace alternative accommodation:

Hotels aren’t the only option for your summer holiday accommodation. Embrace alternative options such as hostels, vacation rentals, or camping sites. These choices can often provide a unique experience and save you money.

Plan and prepare meals:

Eating out every day can quickly eat into your holiday budget. Instead, plan and prepare some of your meals. Visit local markets or grocery stores to stock up on fresh produce and ingredients. This way, you can enjoy picnics, cook your favourite dishes, and experience the local cuisine without constantly dining at restaurants.

Take advantage of free activities:

Many destinations offer an array of free or low-cost activities and attractions. Research and discover parks, museums, walking tours, or festivals that won’t put a dent in your wallet. These activities can provide a rich cultural experience while keeping your budget intact.

A holiday loan:

Leeds Credit Union offers low-interest holiday loans designed to help you spread the cost of your summer holiday. With our flexible repayment plans and competitive interest rates, you can easily manage your finances while enjoying your well-deserved vacation. Whether you need assistance with flights, accommodation, or other holiday expenses, a holiday loan could provide the financial support you require.

So go ahead, plan your budget-friendly summer adventure, and let Leeds Credit Union help make it a reality.

On Monday, 4th December 2023, our systems will be down for scheduled maintenace from 3pm for approximately three hours.

This means head office, branches and online banking/app will not be contactable or usable.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.