MOVIE fans across the world will mark Star Wars Day in style today to show their appreciation for the sci-fi franchise.

Star Wars Day is celebrated on May 4 each year, with pun-making fans declaring “May the fourth be with you” in homage to the film series’ classic Jedi phrase. The annual commemoration began in 2011 in a galaxy far, far away.

The nine-film-strong franchise, which began in 1977, has always been popular in Bradford.

We have used the force of the Telegraph & Argus archives to take a look back at how Bradfordians have celebrated Star Wars.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:


The main link between the Bradford district and Star Wars was one of the actors.

Peter Mayhew (pictured above), the actor who played Chewbacca in five of the films, moved to Keighley in 1987 and fell in love with the town.

He made many appearances as Chewbacca in the town for charity and became a fan of Keighley Rugby Union Football Club.

Mayhew would later leave the town to move to the USA and died last year.

Mr Mayhew played the Wookiee warrior in Star Wars (1977), The Empire Strikes Back (1980), Return of the Jedi (1983), Revenge Of The Sith (2005) and The Force Awakens (2015).

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:


Star Wars fans in Bradford were treated to special early screenings of the eagerly anticipated final chapter in the saga in December last year.

Fans from Australia and New Zealand were at the National Science and Media Museum, one of the first venues in Yorkshire to show Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, the minute it was released.

Its newly independent cinema operation Pictureville was packed with fans for a midnight screening, and ahead of that there was chance to see the other two movies in the trilogy, The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi.

The old Odeon cinema, National Media Museum and Cineworld have all been the backdrop to Star Wars pictures over the years in Bradford.

Here are a few shots from our archives:

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

Above: Fans outside the Odeon in Bradford waiting to see Return of the Jedi in 1983 and, below, in 1978:

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

Former Radio One presenter Chris Moyles met some young Jedis; Joseph Qureshi and Jordan Eli, at the National Media Museum in 2007 for their Big Film Weekend:

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

You don't often see Darth Vader roaming the streets of Bradford, but you did back in 2006, as Joe Jordan dressed up as the baddie:

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:


The Rev Paul Walker used a Star Wars theme to his Sunday service.

He adopted the unusual theme at St Cuthberts Church, Wrose, in May 2006. Pictured below was Rev Walker warming up for his service.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: