Wednesday, 11 November 2009

Pixie flies in to help light up Leeds

Caption: Pixie Lott will headline the lights switch-on in Leeds

Chart-topper Pixie Lott will be making a return to Leeds tomorrow night after being announced as a late addition to the line-up for this year’s Christmas lights switch-on.

The 18-year-old, who claimed two awards in the prestigious MTV Europe Music Awards last week, has joined the bill which includes a host of famous names for the big lights switch-on in Leeds which takes place on Victoria Gardens from 7pm.

Pixie (Victoria Lott) will be making her second appearance of the year in Leeds, having performed at Party in the Park at Temple Newsam in July. Pixie has enjoyed a major breakthrough year in 2009, having two UK number one singles and her debut album “Turn It Up” selling over 70,000 copies since it was released in September.

Her success was recognised in Berlin last week, where Pixie was named Best Push Artist and Best UK/Irish Act in the MTV Europe Music Awards.

Leeds City Council Executive Member for Leisure Councillor John Procter said:

“We are absolutely delighted to have Pixie Lott joining us for this year’s Christmas lights switch-on in Leeds. Pixie put on a great performance at Party in the Park in the summer. We sorry Alexandra Burke won't be joining us but Pixie together with the rest of the fantastic line-up will make for a great show for everyone to enjoy.”

As well as Pixie Lott, the Leeds Lights switch-on organised by Leeds City Council and Real Radio in association with the Yorkshire Evening Post will feature appearances by Girls Can’t Catch, Mini Viva, Lorraine Kelly, Leeds United stars, England and Australia rugby league stars, Ronnie the Rhino with the Super League trophy and, of course, Santa and friends.

Managing Director of Real Radio Yorkshire Steve South said:

“Adding the award-winning Pixie Lott to the evening, fresh from her success at the MTV Europe Music Awards, is fantastic news. We are really disappointed that Alexandra Burke will not be able to attend due to contractual issues, but it is going to be a fantastic and unmissable event which Real Radio are proud to be a part of, and best of all, it’s free.”

Anyone requiring further details about the switch-on can contact Leeds City Council’s Events team on 0113 395 0891 or visit

Notes to editors:

The Christmas lights in Leeds are the largest Christmas illuminations in the UK – covering over 15 miles around the city centre.


For media enquiries please contact:
Roger Boyde, Learning and Leisure Media Relations Officer,
Tel 0113 247 5472, Email:

Views sought on outline conservation plan for Wetherby

Residents in Wetherby are being asked for their views on a draft conservation area plan which is designed to protect the town’s special architectural and historic character.

The town centre has been a conservation area since 1971 which has helped to safeguard its historic character and protect its important buildings from unauthorised demolition. Leeds City Council has now produced an appraisal of the town’s special character with the help of feedback from public consultation with local people.

The review looks at ways to protect and enhance the special character of the town and as a result, one of the proposals is to extend the conservation area to make sure it covers all areas of special architectural and historic character.

A copy of the draft consultation document can be viewed online on the council website (search ‘conservation area appraisals’) and at the library in Wetherby.

A ‘drop-in’ public meeting will be held at Wetherby Town Hall on Wednesday 18 November, between 3pm and 7pm. This is another chance to find out about the appraisal and the conservation area, and give feedback. An exhibition of the appraisal and copies of the draft document will be available.

Councillor Andrew Carter, executive board member responsible for development, said:
“It is important that we are able to safeguard the special architectural character and historic interest of Wetherby – one of Leeds’ finest markets towns. This plan is an important way of ensuring that the relevant protection is in place and is kept up-to-date to enhance the special character the area.

“We’re grateful for the feedback we’ve had so far, and hope people will come along to the meeting to find out more about the draft guidelines that have been produced.”

Designating an area as a conservation area is a way to protect special historic areas from harmful change, unauthorised demolition and to encourage good-quality design in new buildings. Trees are also given some protection.

The project has been funded by the North East Outer Area Committee of Leeds City Council, which includes local councillors from Wetherby, Harewood and Alwoodley.

For media enquiries, please contact;
Laura Ferris, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 224 3335

Statement regarding Alexandra Burke and Leeds Christmas lights

A spokesman for Leeds City Council said:
"Leeds lights switch on is a hugely popular event. Whilst it is unfortunate that Alexandra Burke is not appearing, the show will be packed with great acts and multi-award winning artist Pixie Lott will headline. Our radio partner for the event, Real Radio, is responsible for contracting recording artists for the show and all queries relating to this should be directed to them.”

Children and young people take over the city

Children and young people are taking over the city this week as part of Leeds’ annual Takeover Week.

Education Leeds, the Leeds City Museum, the Lord Mayor of Leeds’ office, and Radio Aire are just some of the organisations and venues which will host children and young people who will take part in decision making activities and discover more about work, employment and life outside school.

**********MEDIA OPPORTUNITY**********
Media are invited to attend any of the Takeover Week events listed below. Please email or call 0113 3951577 to arrange attendance.
**********MEDIA OPPORTUNITY**********

Leeds’ Takeover Week follows national 11 Million Takeover Day which took place last Friday (6 November). It is designed to encourage children and young people to take charge of their schools and give them a greater understanding of decisions which affect their school lives.

Takeover Week develops this even further and gives young people an opportunity to experience life outside of the classroom, visit well known locations across Leeds and find out how they work on a day-to-day basis as well as meeting the people who help to make decisions on the future of education in the city.

Councillor Richard Harker, executive board member for education, said:
“Children and young people already play an important part in decision-making and we are keen to develop this while introducing them to new things outside of school.

“Takeover Week will give everyone who takes part an opportunity to develop their knowledge and skills while giving them an insight into how different organisations operate and the world of full-time employment.”

Chris Edwards, chief executive of Education Leeds, said:
“Takeover Week is a brilliant opportunity for children and young people to learn more about the city, different careers and what life is like outside of school.

“It allows us to meet children outside of their usual environment and get a real insight into their thoughts and opinions of what we do and, more importantly, what they do.

“Together with 11 Million Takeover Day, it increases children and young people’s participation in decision making and allows them to work closely with their teachers to help make their school communities even stronger.”

Some of the takeover events which have been organised include:

Wednesday 11 November:
Children from Ingram Road Primary School will visit Radio Aire and take part in programming, marketing and learn how radio shows are put together and aired.

Children from Stanningley and Moortown primary schools will meet the chief executive of Education Leeds, Chris Edwards, and question him about his job and responsibilities and be given a tour of Education Leeds’ Merrion House headquarters.

Thursday 12 November:
Young people from Otley Prince Henry’s Grammar School and Allerton Grange will be joining Leeds City Council’s international relations team to get an insight into the work the council does with its partner cities around the world.

Friday 13 November:
Children from Wigton Moor Primary School will be taking over the Leeds City Museum where they will look at how to encourage more children to go to the museum as well as looking at how it is run on a day-to-day basis.

Young people from Boston Spa High School will attend the Learning Landscapes event at Elland Road where they will question the government’s chief advisor on standards for schools, Sue Hackman, as well as meet Education Leeds’ management team and find out more about schools and education in the city.


For media enquiries please contact:
Jon Crampton, Leeds City Council press office, 0113 3951577