Friday, 30 September 2011

New students encouraged to stay safe around Leeds waterfronts

New students arriving in Leeds have been getting advice on staying safe around waterfronts from the Leeds Riverside Safety Group.

As freshers have been moving to the city for the first time and other students return to what is one of the biggest student cities in the UK, the group has been busy getting the water safety message out.

Student Matthew Wilcox drowned in the River Aire in Leeds city centre last year. The Leeds Riverside Safety Group was set up to alert people to the dangers around water and to work with landowners and other groups to encourage safety improvements around open waterways.

Members include representatives from Leeds City Council, British Waterways, West Yorkshire Fire Service, West Yorkshire Police, Aire Action Leeds and local universities.

Representatives of the group talked to students at the Leeds Met personal safety awareness week, as well as handing out a new waterfront safety leaflet. It gives tips on how to stay safe around places such as the River Aire, particularly after dark and when alcohol is involved.

It also details of how students can join in and help the campaign by participating in a short educational film. The leaflets were also handed out during the Walk Safe student safety campaign by police and university representatives.

Leeds Riverside Safety Group chair Cllr Richard Lewis, executive member for development at Leeds City Council, said:

“By working closely with local universities and other higher education providers our message was introduced as part of the freshers’ introduction programme.

“Leeds is one of the biggest student cities in the country and we wanted to make sure that our message got out to as many of the new arrivals as possible. The Leeds Riverside Safety Group is working actively with a number of different groups to try to target those people most likely to encounter the risks of open water.”

The group is also working on a campaign to get its message to the wider community in the city. Its members have met organisations such as the City Centre Pubwatch group to encourage them to give out safety warnings and look out for vulnerable people as they close for the night.

Further work is taking place also with students on media and design courses to involve them directly in the campaign.

For media enquiries please contact:
Donna Cox, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 224 3335


Early completion for repair work to Leeds inner ring-road

Major structural repair works to Woodhouse Tunnel have been completed successfully three weeks ahead of programme and within budget.

The tunnel carries the A58 Leeds inner ring road under the Leeds General Infirmary and is one of the busiest stretches of road in Leeds.

Essential concrete repairs have been carried out to the tunnel roof by the contractor AE Yates Ltd on behalf of Leeds City Council.

The works were carried out over a series of weekends. Employees from Leeds City Council and AE Yates Ltd worked from Friday evenings right through until Monday mornings on a shift system to complete the work as quickly as possible and minimise disruption to motorists.

Councillor Richard Lewis, Leeds City Council executive member responsible for city development said:“This was a complex and critical scheme and I’m delighted that it has been completed early with the minimum of disruption to motorists. It is thanks to the hard work of all those involved and effective partnership working with the contractor. “

A spokesperson for AE Yates Ltd said: “We are very pleased to have worked with Leeds City Council on such a high profile scheme. The job has been a great success and is a testament to collaborative and partnership working. We would like to thank both the council and all our supply chain for all their help and support.”

Leeds City Council submitted a bid to the Department for Transport early September for further essential repair and strengthening work to the tunnel, as well as to New York Road Viaduct Eastbound and Lovell Park Road bridge. If the bid is successful phases 2 and 3 of the tunnel work will be carried out in 2013/14 and 2014/15.


For media enquiries please contact:
Sara Hyman, Leeds City Council press office tel: (0113) 224 3602