Thursday, 8 July 2010

Grand opening of £5m joint service centre

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A grand opening of a state-of-the-art £5m joint service centre combining council and health facilities in Harehills will take place next week on Monday 12 July.

The new centre, known as The Compton Centre, will transform access to council services for local people by providing them in new, modern facilities all under one roof.

On Monday it will open its doors to Leeds City Council services including a new, larger library and a new customer services team providing help and advice with benefits, council tax, housing, social care, environment-related issues and Leeds Credit Union enquiries.

Also located at the centre will be a Jobshop where people can get help with getting back to work or receive advice on training. In addition to this, NHS Leeds Community Healthcare’s Primary Care Mental Health Team will provide counselling and support to any patients referred to the service by their family doctor (GP).

The historic frontage of the old Compton Road Library has been preserved, and a new modern extension constructed, with many environmentally friendly features.

Photo/film opportunity:

Time: Monday, 12 July, 12.30pm formal opening ceremony. Building will be operational and open to the public at 1pm.
Venue: The Compton Centre, off Cowper Terrace, Harehills, LS9 7BA.
Photo: Cllr Keith Wakefield, Leader of Leeds City Council, will cut a ribbon and welcome local children into their new library. He will also unveil a plaque commemorating the opening.

The Compton Centre is one of two new joint service centres in the city: the other one is being built in Chapeltown and will open in the autumn. Both centres have been provided by Community Ventures Leeds Limited, a public private partnership joint venture company jointly funded by Leeds City Council and NHS Leeds.

The Compton Centre will offer the following facilities:

• A Leeds City Council customer service team providing help with housing services, benefits advice, council tax, social care and environment issues, plus advice and information on Leeds City Credit Union products and services and East North East Homes Leeds housing services
• A new larger library with a wide range of new books, free internet access and learning sessions, plus regular activities and events
• Registrar Services - registrar surgeries will take place at the centre.
• Employment training and advice from Jobshop
• Appointments with a Welfare Rights advisor for advice on all government benefits
• Surgeries by the Chinese Advisory Service
• NHS Leeds Primary Care Mental Health Team (referral only).

Cllr Keith Wakefield, Leader of Leeds City Council, said:
“This centre will be at the forefront of how the council works with and helps the local community by improving their access to employment, training, housing, library and other council services. It is an excellent example of what can be achieved by working in partnership and a fantastic way of addressing the needs of local people.”

Nigel Fenny, Chief Executive at Community Ventures Leeds, said:
“Community Ventures Leeds is proud to be working with Leeds City Council and NHS Leeds in providing the two joint service centres in Leeds. The first of these, the Compton Centre, features many environmentally friendly features and demonstrates a new design concept which will support the delivery of services to the local community.”

Kevin Howells, Director of Finance and Investment for NHS Leeds, said:“We are delighted to support Leeds City Council in the development of The Compton Centre which will be a valuable community resource. We know that local people prefer services close to where they live and this centre demonstrates how this can be achieved.”

For media enquiries please contact:
Sara Hyman, Leeds City Council press office, 0113 2243602


Inner west schools work together for Stephen Lawrence award

Singing, dancing, poetry and food from around the world will be part of celebrations this week as schools from the inner west area of Leeds work together to achieve the Stephen Lawrence Education Standard.

The standard – adopted by the government to be used in schools across the country – is awarded to schools which promote race equality and community cohesion.

**********MEDIA OPPORTUNITY**********
Media are invited to the Stephen Lawrence Education Standard celebrations at Armley Leisure Centre from 9.30am on Friday 9 July. Please call 0113 3951577 or email to confirm attendance.
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The bid for the award will be officially launched by the Lord Mayor of Leeds, Councillor Jim McKenna, and the chief executive of Education Leeds, Chris Edwards at 9.30am on Friday 9 July at the new Armley Leisure Centre.

A choir made up of pupils from all the schools taking part will begin the celebrations and an art competition – made up of pieces of work from children from all the schools involved – will be held.

The children will discuss with visitors what they have learnt so far and what the SLES means to them and their school. Each of the 13 primary schools will stage performances - including singing, dancing, poetry and steel drums - and different food from around the world will be served before doves are released as a symbol of peace.

Councillor Jane Dowson, executive board member for learning, said:
“It’s fantastic that so many Leeds schools are working to achieve this prestigious award. These 15 schools will reap the benefits of working together and I’m sure each will emerge with the Stephen Lawrence Education Standard.

“Equality and community cohesion are very important and every school which achieves this award has demonstrated that these messages are a key part of everyday school life.”

Chris Edwards, chief executive of Education Leeds, said:
“Every school which achieves the Stephen Lawrence Education Standard has shown that it recognises the importance of equality and proved its commitment to promoting it to every pupil.

“The nationally recognised standard helps to enrich the curriculum and broadens pupils’ horizons. It helps to ensure our children and young people treat each other with respect and every school which is awarded the standard should be proud of the achievement.”

In the afternoon, back at their own schools, all the children who have taken part will lead an assembly describing the events and every child in each school will receive a memento of the day.

The 15 schools taking part are: Cobden primary, Whingate primary, Armley primary, Lower Wortley primary, Holy Family Catholic primary, Castleton primary, St Bartholomews C of E primary, Five Lanes primary, Lawns Park primary, Swallow Hill Community College, Christ Church C of E primary, Ryecroft primary, Greenhill primary and Farnley Park Maths and Computing College.


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

Superstar search heats up for final

The final of south Leeds Superstar is on its way this weekend and will see a winner being crowned.

There are 20 acts in the final including a moon walking Michael Jackson impersonator, a piano player, a comedian and various singers and dancers.

The final will take place on Saturday 10 July at Holbeck gala from 1:45 -3:15pm with the announcement of the overall winner at 4.15pm.

The winner of the competition will go through to the city-wide Find Your Talent final which is held in December.

Councillor Angela Gabriel, chair of Leeds City Council’s inner south area committee, said:
“There has been an enormous amount of talent in the superstar search this year, and all the acts that have auditioned should be very proud of themselves.

“The superstar competitions really showcase the talent that each of these local communities has and brings the residents together for a great summer of entertainment.

“I wish all the finalists the best of luck and look forward to hearing who the winner is.”

Youngsters between the ages of eight to 16 have auditioned for this years south Leeds Superstar competition, with the talent showcase being bigger and even more spectacular than ever before.

For further information, please call south east area management on 0113 224 3040


For media enquiries, please contact;
Cat Milburn, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 247 4450

Website goes live for markets

Leeds markets have launched a new official website with recipe ideas, locations of markets and news and events to keep people up to date on all things markets.

The website gives detailed information about all our markets including specialist markets, upcoming events and news, how to rent a stall at the various markets around Leeds that are run or licensed by the council and the rich history of Kirkgate Market

In the next few months further information will be added to the website such as upcoming events, trader profiles and news stories from within the market.

Cllr Mark Dobson, Leeds Kirkgate market champion said:
“It is fantastic to have this new website up and running as it provides more information for both customers and traders.

“The featured recipes and news and events sections will give customers new and old far more information about the markets across Leeds and from a new portal.

“I am excited to see how the website will develop in the next few months, and look forward to finding out more about each trader in their profiles.”

You can access the new markets website at


For media enquiries, please contact;
Cat Milburn, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 247 4450