Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Renovation rolled out at former Mike’s Carpets building

Renovation work has now started on an Armley landmark.

The Mike’s Carpets building, which is in a prominent position on the Armley Road and Branch Road junction is undergoing significant restoration work.

Number two Branch Road, known locally as Mike’s Carpets, was originally built as Methodist Chapel in 1905 and is a grade two listed building.

The historic building, along with several others on Town Street, has been ear marked through the Armley Townscape Heritage Initiative scheme to benefit from funding. The money will improve their appearance and it is hoped increase economic confidence and investment.

Armley Townscape Heritage Initiative is jointly funded by Leeds City Council and the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Owner of two Branch Road, Mike Smith, is also working with Arctic Associates – a conservation accredited architectural practice based in Morley – to provide funding and make the project a reality.

Mr Mike Smith of Clifton Properties (Yorkshire) Ltd said:

“I am delighted this scheme has now begun. It has been a long time in the making. The visual impact on Armley these improvements should make will be great for the area inspiring confidence and hopefully bring some extra businesses and increasing footfall.”

The scheme involves repairs to the natural slate roof, restoration of the windows and terracotta entrance as well as rebuilding the boundary wall.

Councillor Richard Lewis Executive member for transport and the economy said:

“The former Mike’s Carpets building is a famous Armley landmark and is on one of the main routes into Leeds city centre. It has been deteriorating for some time so it is a relief to see the scaffolding go up so work can start in earnest. The partnership working of the grant scheme with Mr Smith will bring the building back to its former glory and brighten up the junction.”

The Armley grant scheme is also supporting a block restoration scheme at 14-22 Branch Road, which is already improving the look of the street. Work at two Branch Road is scheduled to be completed by mid-December.
These properties have a conservation deficit meaning the amount of investment required to restore the buildings is not reflected in the property if it were sold at the market rate, so the council had to step in to make things happen.

Notes to editors:

About the Heritage Lottery Fund
Using money raised through the National Lottery, the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) aims to make a lasting difference for heritage, people and communities across the UK and help build a resilient heritage economy. From museums, parks and historic places to archaeology, natural environment and cultural traditions, it invests in every part of the country’s diverse heritage. HLF has supported almost 36,000 projects with more than £6bn across the UK. www.hlf.org.uk.

About the Townscape Heritage programme
THIs encourages partnerships of local organisations to carry out repairs and other works to a number of historic buildings, structures or spaces. On 25 March 2013 the programme was re-launched as Townscape Heritage with grants now available from £100,000 up to £2m. HLF supports partnerships of local, regional and national interests that aim to regenerate economically disadvantaged historic areas for the benefit of local residents, workers and visitors. To date, HLF has invested over £214m regenerating towns and cities that have suffered serious social and economic decline.

ENDS

For media enquiries please contact:
Dan Johnson,
Leeds City Council press office,
Tel 0113 24 74450
Email: daniel.johnson2@leeds.gov.uk

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Leeds confirms three team bases for Rugby World Cup 2015

Caption: Representatives from all the team bases in Leeds. (From left) Alex Beaumont (Events manager for University of Leeds Rugby team), Mike Bidgood, (West Park Leeds RUFC), Mark Allman, (head of sport Leeds City Council), Josh Clough, (chairman of Leeds Trinity University Rugby Team), Matthew Byrne, (social secretary for Leeds Trinity Univeristy Rugby Team), Sally Nickson, (head of sport Leeds Met), Rob Wadsworth (head of sport University of Leeds) and Councillor Lucinda Yeadon(Leeds City Council).

England Rugby 2015, the Organising Committee for Rugby World Cup 2015 (RWC 2015), has announced the approved list of 41 team bases that will host the 20 participating teams during the Tournament, taking place in England and in Cardiff between September 18 and October 31 2015.

• 41 team bases selected for use at Rugby World Cup 2015
• Leeds offers Team Bases for Scotland, USA and Canada at Rugby World Cup 2015
• Leeds Team Bases consist of facilities at Leeds University, Leeds Metropolitan University, Leeds Trinity University, West Park Leeds Rugby Club and John Charles Centre for Sport
• 20 competing teams will be based across England and Wales
• Range of rugby clubs, schools, universities and dedicated training centres have been selected
• Team Bases extend the reach of Rugby World Cup 2015 to even more communities in England and Wales


Leeds has been successful in a cross-city bid comprising of world class facilities at all three universities, the council’s flagship John Charles Centre for Sport and facilities at West Park Leeds Rugby Club.

The search for team bases was launched via an open tender process in May 2013 and over 90 bids from across the country and in Wales were received. Leeds has worked closely with England Rugby 2015 over the past 12 months to facilitate detailed site visits and liaison with the teams prior to confirmation of its status as an official Team Base for Rugby World Cup 2015. With Scotland, USA and Canada based in Leeds, this gives the city the opportunity to be part of the world’s third largest sporting event and celebration of rugby next year.

A mix of rugby and football clubs, schools, colleges, universities and dedicated training facilities will be utilised by the 20 teams, taking the reach of the Tournament even further.

Councillor Lucinda Yeadon, Leeds City Council executive board member with responsibility for digital and creative technologies, culture and skills said:
“It is fantastic news that so many sites in the city are being used to host the USA, Canada and Scotland.
“We are in a unique position in Leeds where all our three universities can offer world class sporting facilities for these teams, along with the excellent council and community facilities that will be on offer.
“Having the world’s third largest tournament in the city is fantastic and to complement that we can now say we have world class rugby players training at a number of our world class training sites across the city too.

England Rugby 2015 CEO, Debbie Jevans said:
“As the organising committee for Rugby World Cup 2015 we are committed to ensuring that all participating teams have the optimum training environments available to them throughout the Tournament and in this regard we are delighted to announce our 41 official Team Bases for the event. Rugby, rightly, is at the heart of all our planning and we have worked closely with the teams to ensure that they have access to facilities and a Team Base that meet their individual needs.

“I would like to thank all those who have been part of the Team Base selection process and we are lucky to have some fantastic facilities right across the country. With a wide range of excellent facilities and locations secured the teams can be assured of having all their training needs met whilst allowing us to spread the reach of the Tournament even further throughout England and in Wales.”

Sally Nickson, head of sport at Leeds Metropolitan University* said:
“Leeds Metropolitan University is delighted to have been chosen as a host training venue for the Scotland Rugby Team to support preparations for their Rugby World Cup 2015 match against the USA on 27th September at Elland Road.
“As hosts we will endeavour to provide high quality facilities, first class service and excellent atmosphere that we hope will make this a truly memorable time for the players and coaches.”

Chairman of West Park Leeds RUFC, Malcolm Kilvington, commented:
“We hosted Italy before their first World Cup match in 1991 and, after a major upgrade to the grounds and clubhouse in 2008, the England senior squad have regularly used the club as a training base. We look forward to welcoming Canada in 2015 and it is a testament to the facilities that the members have developed at the club that the highest competition in the game is again coming to Bramhope.”

Howard Nelson, Leeds Trinity University’s chief operating officer and university secretary, commented:
“We’re honoured to have been chosen as the official training base for the USA team during the Rugby World Club in 2015. We’ve invested millions into providing world-class sports facilities on our campus for students and the local community, so it’s fantastic that the quality of these facilities has been recognised by one of the world’s best rugby teams.

The Rugby World Cup is another great opportunity to put Leeds on a global sporting stage, following the success of the Tour de France Grand Départ in July 2014, and we’re extremely proud to play a part in this.”

Rob Wadsworth, head of sport and physical activity at the University of Leeds, said:
“The University of Leeds has a proven track record in hosting high-profile sports teams, with the Chinese Olympic table tennis team and the Canadian Paralympic wheelchair rugby team both making their training bases here before the London 2012 Olympics, and England’s rugby union team using the University facilities for training camps. We look forward to Scotland’s team coming to the University ahead of rugby union’s showpiece event, the Rugby World Cup. We believe we can provide the facilities and services to support a successful tournament.

“The University boasts world-class sporting facilities so it is fantastic that Scotland’s team will have use of them ahead of the competition. They will be able to enjoy the best of the city, and the University, ahead of some bone-crunching action.”

USA manager Tristan Lewis said;
“I can tell you why we have chosen the bases we have – simply put they offer the best opportunity for us to train well as well as give us the opportunity to be a part of English culture so that everyone has fond and lasting memories of England; it’s history and wealth of pageantry.

“The team will be based in four venues which is different to a lot of the teams who are choosing to stay in one place and do short match day weekends. So we are in Portsmouth for the match in Brighton, Leeds for Scotland, Hertfordshire for the match at the Olympic Stadium with South Africa and finally Gloucester for Japan.”


ENDS

Notes to Editors


•The search for Rugby World Cup 2015 Team Bases was launched in May 2013
•65 bases were listed as approved bases in February 2014, meeting the criteria to be a Team Base, 41 have been selected as the Official Team Bases for RWC 2015

A Rugby World Cup 2015 Team Base will consist of an outdoor pitch, indoor training facility, a swimming pool, gym and hotel and will be utilised by the competing teams in the lead up to and during the six week event. The facilities must meet international team training standards and be located on one site or within close proximity of one another. Match venue locations have also been taken into account as part of the selection programme.

*Leeds Metropolitan University will become Leeds Beckett University on 22 September.

For more information on Leeds team bases please contact Cat Lindley, Leeds City Council communications team, Catherine.Lindley@leeds.gov.uk , 07712214224

For more information on Rugby World Cup 2015 please contact media@england2015.com / +44 (0)3320 152020.

Apprenticeship event will help young people get a foot in the door


Caption: Natalie Wilson, who is urging young people to take up a business admin apprenticeship like her.

Young people in Leeds wondering what’s next after their GCSEs can take their first step onto the career ladder at a special event this week.

Hundreds of 16-18 year-olds are expected to attend the business administration apprenticeship event at the Carriageworks Theatre this Friday (August 29).

Running from 1pm-4pm, the event will give young people a chance to find out how to get a foot in the door at local companies.

Apprenticeship opportunities will be available with firms including Arndale Solicitors, Yazoom Telecom and Leeds charity St George’s Crypt.

Also attending will be interpreting and translation firm thebigword.

Natalie Wilson, 24, started as a business admin apprentice with thebigword, and has since been promoted to project manager.

She said: “I love working here, there is such a variation and diverse range of people, it’s great to mix with other cultures and work with different nationalities on a daily basis.

"I have learnt a lot about the world from various colleagues; it’s made my time here that little bit more interesting.”

Natalie added: “As well as my fast career progression, another one of my greatest achievements in my time with the company has to be that I was nominated for the title of Leeds Apprentice of the Year.

“Since joining thebigword as an apprentice, I feel as though I have gained a lot of stability and direction. I strongly recommend anybody to take advantage of this opportunity the same way I did.”

Business administration vacancies make up around 130 of the current 240 apprenticeship opportunities available in Leeds.

This week’s event will also include learning providers like Leeds City College, Hit Training, Key Training and the Leeds Apprenticeship Training Agency, who will be able to talk young people through their options.

Councillor Lucinda Yeadon, Leeds City Council’s executive member for digital and creative technologies, culture and skills, said:

“Business administration apprenticeships can be a great foot in the door for young people looking to take their first step into a new career.

“These types of apprenticeships are an ideal way to learn the ropes with a huge variety of companies and organisations, and a chance to pick up some really important core skills whilst earning a wage.

“And for those young people who have just got their GCSE results and are wondering what to do next, this Friday’s event will be a perfect way to find out about some opportunities that have some real potential.”

For more information or to book a place at this week’s event, visit www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/business-administration-apprenticeship-event-registration-12428165979

ENDS

Stuart Robinson
Communications Officer
Leeds City Council
Tel: 0113 224 3937
Email: stuart.robinson@leeds.gov.uk
www.leeds.gov.uk


Hospital to Home winter lifeline gets £300,000 funding boost

A pioneering project to help vulnerable older people get back on their feet after a stay in hospital this winter has been handed a huge cash boost.

The Hospital to Home scheme (H2H) has been given £300,000 to support hundreds of local people as they settle back into home life after an illness or injury.

Managed by Age UK Leeds in partnership with Leeds City Council, local health services, British Red Cross and other community and voluntary sector groups, the project will see a team of dedicated volunteers working to prevent older people going back into hospital once they have gone home and making sure they don’t become isolated while they recover.

Volunteers will be recruited from local charities as well as the city’s 37 council-funded neighbourhood networks.

The community-based networks, which run a range of services and activities, prevented 1,450 older people from going into hospital and supported 617 more who had been discharged last year alone.

Working directly with hospitals and local adult social care to identify patients in need of extra support, volunteers on the Hospital to Home team will ensure older people are not left to cope with their recovery alone.

Councillor Adam Ogilvie, Leeds City Council’s executive member for adult social care, said:

“Adjusting to home life after a stay in hospital is an anxious time for anyone, but for older people there is the added worry of getting transport back home, getting around the house and, for many, wondering when they will next see a visitor or a friendly face.

“That transitional period is a very vulnerable time for older people, when they can be at risk of either going back into hospital or becoming isolated and lonely, particularly over the winter months when getting out and about can become much more difficult.

“Having a team dedicated to making that transition less stressful will make a massive difference and this money will be a huge boost to a project that is a genuine lifeline to older people in Leeds.”

Funding for the project has come from a new £2m cash pot set up by the cabinet office’s Centre for Social Action, NHS England, Monitor, the NHS Trust Development Authority (TDA) and the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS).

In addition to support following discharge from hospital, support will be offered to all eligible older people when they arrive in A and E. They will then be referred to a H2H Neighbourhood Support before they go home, who will ensure they get the help they need.

Support could include shopping, cooking and prescription collections, home safety checks and cleaning.
The funding will help the project support an estimated 1,400 patients over the next six months, including during the Christmas and New Year holidays.

Heather O’Donnell, chief executive at Age UK Leeds said:

“We are delighted to be leading this project with our partners. We hope the project will reduce pressures on local hospitals and very importantly improve the experience of older people after a stay in hospital or visit to A and E.

"We will work with older people to support them maintain their independence, improve their wellbeing and give them greater choice and control over their lives.

“Older people across Leeds are relying on your support to help with minor practical tasks and provide emotional reassurance so that that they are safe and confident after their return home from hospital.

“We are looking for volunteers across Leeds who could be a friendly face and help them settle back into their own home.”

For details about how you can help support Hospital to Home as a volunteer, please contact Alexandra Boyle on 0113 389 3017.

Julie Duerden, Project Manager for the new service, can also be contacted on Julie.duerden@ageukleeds.org for further information

ENDS

For media enquiries, please contact:
Stuart Robinson
Communications Officer
Leeds City Council
Tel: 0113 224 3937
Email: stuart.robinson@leeds.gov.uk
www.leeds.gov.uk