More than 1,000 schoolchildren will provide an explosion of colour when they march through Bradford’s streets for the Lord Mayor’s Parade next month.

The bright costumes will form part of this year’s film-themed parade, Sensational Cinema, on Saturday, May 17.

The event finishes in City Park, which will feature street theatre, live music, children’s activities and a screening of Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory on the Bradford Big Screen.

The parade is the first in an extensive programme of free events for the Council’s award-winning venue this summer.

Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe, the executive member for employment, skills and culture, said: “The events programme lined up for the summer is looking really good.

“We know that the events bring in additional people who then spend in the shops and businesses in the city centre. However, it’s also a great opportunity to show off some home-grown creative talent alongside internationally-renowned acts.”

Bradford Festival returns on June 13 with a three-day programme.

Highlights includes new British theatre company Les Enfants Terribles, Bradford’s internationally-celebrated theatre company Mind the Gap, and Punjabi Dhol drummer Johnny Kalsi.

Opera lovers will be able to enjoy outdoor screenings of La Traviata, on May 20, La Boheme, on July 15 and Rigoletto, on September 17, beamed live from the Royal Opera House in London, while Bradford’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities will celebrate the diversity of the district at the Bradford Pride event on May 31.

The World Curry Festival promises to be a powerful sensory experience from June 20 to 22, with the courage, and the bravery of the armed forces is set be remembered at Armed Forces Day and a WWI Centenary event on June 28, featuring the 144 Army Cadet Band leading a parade of standard bearers into City Park.

Young people will be treated to a high-energy fusion of cool street culture and sport at the Urban Festival from July 11 to 12, while City Park will become a giant playground at the popular Big City Play Day on July 19.

Bradford’s high-tech public space will host Film And Fun Wednesdays from July 30 to August 27, with family movies set to hit the big screen.

Car enthusiasts will flock to the Bradford Classic and Performance car show on August 16, and families can enjoy a day of traffic-free cycling at the Bradford Sky Ride on September 28.