EVENTS will be held across Bradford today to mark International Women’s Day.

The theme for this year is ‘Press for Progress’ and groups and organisations across the district are gearing up to play their part in pressing for gender equality.

Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe, Bradford Council’s leader, said: “The theme for this year is Press for Progress. There has never been a more important time for us to press forward and progress gender parity.”

City Park will be turned purple to mark the day. A special lunch was due to be held at City Hall, but this been cancelled due to the weather. 

Parkside Community Centre, West Bowling, will welcome men and women to mark the day. The event, which will run from 11.30am until 3.30pm, will be opened by Councillor Doreen Lee, Deputy Lord Mayor of Bradford and will include talks, workshops, displays, discussions and more.

It will look at what women can do themselves to break away from gender discrimination and will look at the obstacles - race, religious, economic, emotional and physical - which can stand in the way.

Kala Sangam will also be a hive of activity as an event programmed by Soroptimist International Yorkshire gets underway.

There will be a full day of discussion, music and dance. Visitors will hear from inspirational speakers and have the opportunity to take part in workshops.

The day will end with a performance of ‘Here Comes Trouble’, which is described as a rigorous personal investigation into womanhood and identity.

At Bradford City Library, a poster workshop and exhibition will be led by artist Jean McEwan to celebrate inspirational women.

The drop-in sessions from 1pm until 5pm will give people the opportunity to make their own posters about the women who inspire them.

Those posters will then be copied and will become part of a temporary exhibition in the library.

The library will also host an evening of poetry, prose and music between 7 and 9pm. It’s free of charge and there is no need to book.

The Brick Box Room, Ivegate, will host bRadical Women, between 5.30pm and 9pm.

Visitors will be able to listen to spoken word about radical suffragette acts in Bradford and play games inspired by the suffragette board game Pank-A-Squith.

An exhibition is also running throughout March featuring photographs of Bradford men and women who fought for women’s rights, reformed education or changed the way women are perceived in the workplace.

And at the Impressions Gallery, City Park, join photography curators Anne McNeill and Pippa Oldfield for Feed Your Mind: Women in Photography - an informal discussion over tea and cake which will look at whether male photographers have received more exposure than female photographers and, if so, why? This event will run between 3.30pm and 4.30pm.

Bingley-based Emerald Publishing will also mark the day. In support of this year’s theme, the company has launched an ‘’Empowering Women in the 21st Century’ we page - a collection of information to celebrate the empowerment of women.

It has also published a Q&A with its recently appointed CEO Vicky Williams, as she discusses her career journey and shares her thoughts and advice for future female leaders.

Find out more on their website 

A Bradford artist is also celebrating some of pop culture's most inspiring women with her latest exhibition. Titled The Kind Of Girl I'd Like To Find In My Mirror, Rosie McAndrew's exhibition runs at South Square in Thornton until April 1.

On Saturday, March 10, the artist will run a free Zine making workshop at the gallery from 12-2pm. To sign up for the workshop email

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS) is opening its application window today and to mark International Women’s Day is asking why more women don’t apply and make the grade.

Last year, more than 700 women applied to become a firefighter, but only four made it through the application process and gruelling fitness tests.

Chief Fire Officer John Roberts said: “We know there are many women out there who would make wonderful firefighters but are perhaps reluctant to apply, possibly because they still see it as traditionally a man’s job. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Any woman is capable of becoming a firefighter if they are fit and healthy and willing to put in the hard work to achieve their dream.”

Anyone interested in applying should visit at