Leeds underground culture hit sweeps across West Yorkshire

* It's already massive in Leeds and a hit in Bradford - now Bettakultcha sets its sights on conquering Huddersfield
* Cult hit has grown through use of social media
* Topics included robot sex, Myra Hindley and losing your limbs up a mountain

It's been described as a 'night of passions' that has transformed into an underground Leeds institution in a little over a year.

Leeds Bettakultcha
Bettakultcha in the Corn Exhange Photograph: John Baron/guardian.co.uk Photograph: John Baron/guardian.co.uk

The Bettakultcha phenomenon started with about a few dozen people crowding into a cold and draughty Temple Works for a fresh new cultural event based on ordinary people doing presentations on their passions and interest.

After becoming a huge indie hit in Leeds - attracting more than 300 people to recent events at the Corn Exchange - organisers Richard Michie and Ivor Tymchak set up Bettakultcha Bradford earlier this year - and next week Bettakultcha holds its first event in Huddersfield.

It runs on a simple premise:

* Anyone can do a presentation, but no sales pitches
* All presentations will only be 20 slides long
* Each slide will last only 15 seconds before it goes on the next one
* When 5 minutes finishes so does the presentation

One of the organisers, Richard Michie, said of its success and its expansion across West Yorkshire:

"Bettakultcha is not a night of death by powerPoint, the speakers are wide and varied and can and will present in a variety of ways.

"Previous subjects have included robot sex, pinhole cameras, the science of cakes, Myra Hindley, the politics of North Korea, losing your limbs up a mountain and the tistory of drag artists, to name just a few (there have been over 100 so far)."

A recent post on Leeds-based blog The Culture Vulture also gives some background on the event's genesis through social media site Twitter:

"BK was launched and has grown through the use of social media; building anticipation before hand, discussion and critique during the event, and the easy ability to connect with those who have given presentations as well as the person you've sat next to. It is undoubted that the twitter community of Leeds has almost used this as their 'twitter meet-up'."

More details about Bettakultcha Huddersfield can be found here.


John Baron

The GuardianTramp

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