Wednesday, 15 December 2010

PHOTO OPPORTUNITY: Local homes for local people – new Morley housing to be unveiled

A development of new affordable homes in Leeds is to be officially unveiled on Thursday.

The 12 two and three-bedroom homes for social rent and nine two and three-bedroom homes for shared ownership are on Glen Road, Morley.

The three two- and three-bedroom homes for social rent and nine two- and three-bedroom homes for shared ownership have been built at Glen Road, Morley.

The properties are among the first to be delivered through Leeds City Council’s Affordable Housing Strategic Partnership, which was established to use council-owned land to attract public funding so that more affordable housing can be built.

The homes at Glen Road have been built by city-based affordable housing developer Lovell and the shared ownership properties will be managed by Accent Foundation.

**************** MEDIA OPPORTUNITY ****************

WHAT: Councillors, residents from the local community and the media with have an opportunity to view one of the newly completed properties in advance of tenants and homeowners moving in.
WHERE: Glen Road, Morley
WHEN: Thursday 16th December at 10am.

In total, Accent Foundation will be developing 325 new affordable homes for rent and shared ownership across the city.

Councillor Geoff Driver, Leeds City Council’s lead member for housing, said:
“This is a very exciting development because these are very well designed and well built properties.
“By providing accommodation for people suffering from overcrowding, it means we can tackle both that issue and free up other council homes for people on the waiting list.
“In the face of the recession and against many people’s expectations, we are delivering new high quality affordable and council housing in Leeds.”

Noel Adams, Lovell regional director, said:
“As a Leeds-based company, it’s been particularly rewarding working with Leeds City Council and Accent Foundation to deliver this important scheme at Glen Road, creating new, high-quality affordable homes. The development will bring about real benefits for people living locally.”

Notes to editors
Lovell is a leading UK provider of affordable housing. The company has expertise in new-build, regeneration and refurbishment while its responsive and planned maintenance business Lovell Respond provides comprehensive maintenance and estates management services. With offices in England, Scotland and Wales, Lovell offers a unique one-stop shop of services with the ability to build homes, offer a full menu of tenure options and maintenance for life. Lovell is part of Morgan Sindall Group plc, a leading UK construction and regeneration group operating through four divisions of fit out, construction and infrastructure, affordable housing and urban regeneration, and an investment unit. Media contact: Ragan Beale / Andrew Gray, E=MC2 Public Relations Tel: 01747 871752

ENDS
For media enquiries please contact:
Michael Molcher, Leeds City Council (0113) 224 3937
e-mail: michael.molcher@leeds.gov.uk

Transformation of Leeds children’s services moves forward

Executive councillors have agreed a major transformation and improvement programme for children’s services throughout Leeds.

At today’s meeting of Leeds City Council’s executive board, senior councillors endorsed a revision to the leadership structure and responsibilities as the starting point in an overhaul of the way services for children and young people are delivered in the city.

The transformation of children’s services was proposed last year to address issues raised in previous government inspection reports. Executive councillors today agreed that in addition to the new leadership structure, each service area would be delivered at a more local level to provide families with more focused, integrated support at the right time.

Leeds children’s services is currently responsible for early years, youth services, youth offending services and children and young people’s social care – including fostering and adoption, child protection and children’s disability services. As of April 2011 its remit will also include education, when Education Leeds is disbanded.

The new structure would bring these services directly to the people that need them most by having different teams based together within communities. By working much more closely together the communication between the teams will improve, providing a much more streamlined and efficient service for families across the city.

Councillor Judith Blake, executive member responsible for children’s services said:
“We are making very good progress following a challenging time for children’s services in the city. These proposals are ambitious but I’m confident they’ll bring about the positive results we need for families across Leeds.

“The new direction for the leadership team signals an exciting opportunity to improve the way we deliver services for children and young people. We want to make sure teams are better integrated and more focused on those with the greatest need, and work better to give families the right support at the right time.”

Nigel Richardson, director of children’s services, said:
“The whole focus of these changes is to make sure the needs of children and young people are at the heart of everything we do.

“Often there are different teams working with members of the same family, and by bringing these key services together, into the heart of communities, we can make sure nothing is missed and the whole family’s needs are being met.”

The executive board also endorsed the aspiration for Leeds to work at becoming the country’s first truly child friendly city. The idea of a child friendly city builds on a project developed by Unicef that aims to help cities develop a system of governance committed to fulfilling children’s rights. Leeds hopes to work with partners from a wide variety of organisations – public, private, voluntary and community – to collectively put children at the heart of everything the city does.

Nigel Richardson continued:“Making Leeds a truly child friendly city is an ambitious aim, but it’s an aim we hope many organisations across Leeds will be happy to support and work with us to achieve. By putting children at the heart of our decision making we are investing in our whole city’s future.”

The executive board will consider how the leadership changes and locality-based working will be implemented at a meeting in the new year.

ENDS
For media enquiries, please contact:
Emma Whittell, Leeds City Council press office, on (0113) 2474713
Email: emma.whittell@leeds.gov.uk

Cinderella competition winners get to go to the ball



Picture caption: competition winners (from left to right) Millie Bickler, Alexandra Meneely and Shannon Hodgson with Cinderella and Rory the Leeds City Museum mascot



It really was a case of ‘rags to riches’ for the winners of The Carriageworks’ Cinderella competition.

The Millennium Square theatre which is currently hosting the festive pantomime asked young people to design their own costumes – either a dress for Cinderella to go to the ball in or an outfit for Prince Charming – and send them in for a chance to win fantastic prizes.

The lucky winners (pictured) were Alexandra Meneely from Boroughbridge (under 6 category), Millie Bickler from Alwoodley (7-10 winner category) and Shannon Hodgson from Bramley (11+ winner category).

They all received a family ticket to see the panto as well as free passes for the Heroes and Heroines exhibition of film and television costumes at Leeds City Museum where their winning designs are being displayed as part of the exhibition.

Martin McInulty, General Manager of The Carriageworks, said:

“Thank you so much to everyone who took part in this competition. All the entries were of a really high standard and it was hard to choose the winners.

“They’re over-the-moon to see their designs exhibited in the museum where they’ve been given pride-of-place.

“The runner-up entries also look great in the bar area here at The Carriageworks so everyone who comes to see Cinderella can take a look at them.”

Playing until 8 January 2011 Cinderella stars former ‘Allo ‘Allo star Sue Hodge as the Fairy Godmother, CBeebies presenter Jez Edwards as Buttons, Suzanne David as Cinderella and Roger Darrock and Stephen Howe as the ugly sisters.

The show tells the tale of the traditional family Christmas favourite complete with magic wand, pumpkins, a glittering coach, glass slipper and a spell which breaks when the clock chimes midnight.

Featuring stunning scenery, colourful costumes, creative choreography, an action-packed storyline, slapstick comedy and plenty of audience participation, Cinderella is a hit with people of all ages.

The show is being produced by London-based pantomime experts Paul Holman Associates who have enjoyed great success at The Carriageworks with Aladdin and Snow White over the last two years.

Tickets for Cinderella can now be booked by contacting The Carriageworks Box Office on 0113 224 3801 or online at www.carriageworkstheatre.org.uk.

Notes to Editors:

1. The Carriageworks is a thriving theatre at the heart of Leeds’ Millennium Square. It showcases the best in new national and international performance work, with a dynamic programme of theatre, dance, comedy and film. At the same time it offers support for emerging and professional theatre makers at various different stages of their careers. The venue also gives opportunities for members of the local community to take part in a variety of high quality participatory arts activities, including becoming involved in amateur productions through the Leeds Civic Arts Guild and extensive work with young people.

ENDS


For media enquiries please contact: Daniel Johnson, leisure communications officer, tel: 0113 247 8285, email: Daniel.johnson1@leeds.gov.uk