Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Leeds City Region perfect match for green investment bank

The Leeds City Region Local Enterprise Partnership has welcomed the Government’s announcement of its competition to host the new £3bn Green Investment Bank.

Paul Hamer of the LEP said:

“Leeds City Region is the natural location for the Green Investment Bank, with a compelling business case that fits exactly with the criteria announced by the government today.

"With the UK’s largest financial sector outside London – bigger than any of the other areas bidding to host the Bank – and significant technical expertise from organisations like low carbon experts CO2Sense, we’ve already got the perfect cluster of skills and markets that the GIB needs in order to succeed.

"Add to that the top quality, low cost office space that's available in the city region, and we are confident in the strength of our bid, although we recognise the competition will be tough.”

The Leeds City Region bid already enjoys cross-party support from the region's MPs. Greg Mulholland MP recently led a debate in Parliament, during which Yorkshire MPs from all three main parties spoke out in support of the bid.

Greg Mulholland said:

“The selection process outlined for the Green Investment Bank today shows that the Leeds City Region has exactly the right ingredients to deliver on the government's aspiration's for the Bank.

"As a global leader in the financial services and low carbon sectors, our bid will demonstrate why the Leeds City Region offers a unique base for this important new initiative.”

Julian Smith, MP for Skipton and Ripon said:

“I am delighted that the whistle has now gone off in the race to win the Green Investment Bank. Leeds and the Yorkshire region has an excellent chance to win this contest but it will require focused and energetic approach from political leaders, the financial sector, business leaders and green activists alike. The competition is stiff but with an innovative bid we have a good chance.”

The Green Investment Bank will support low carbon projects across the UK. It is expected that 50-70 people will be employed by the Bank, with recruitment starting in 2012.

The government announced the process for interested locations to submit a bid yesterday, with a closing date for submissions of 30 January 2012.


Businesses and individuals can support the Leeds City Region's bid to host the Bank by visiting www.greenbanklcr.org

Ends

Media enquiries please contact Leeds City Council’s Corporate Communications Team: tel 0113 247 4328

Dogs to come under greater control in Leeds as orders are widened

Dogs will be banned from some school grounds and from remembrance and wildlife areas in Leeds as orders to control them are tightened up.

From January 1st 2012 when the revised orders come into force, people with dogs will also have to ensure their animals are on leads on all streets, adjacent footpaths and grass verges and in cemeteries and crematoria.

A proposal to extend existing dog control orders introduced in the city at the beginning of this year was agreed by Leeds City Council’s executive board today.

It will mean:
• a ban from school grounds where the schools have requested the order;
• a further ban from remembrance and wildlife gardens;
• dogs must be on a lead at all times on all carriageways and adjacent footpaths and grass verges, as well as in cemeteries and crematoria;
• they must also be put on a lead in any other places when directed by a council officer to do so if they consider the dog needs to be controlled.

The report has also clarified the policy for the walking of multiple dogs by professional dog walking services. The arrangement will mean that professional dog walkers will be allowed to walk up to six dogs at a time, instead of having to keep it to no more than four, which is the rule for the general public. This is conditional on the professional dog walkers keeping the animals under full control.

Council officers will still be able to instruct anyone with a dog to put it on a lead at any time if they consider it to be behaving badly. The existing orders also exclude dogs from children’s play areas in some parks.

Anyone breaching dog control orders has to pay a fixed penalty charge of £75, reduced to £50 for rapid payment. However, failure to pay could lead to court and potentially fines of up to £1,000.

Councillor Mark Dobson, executive member for environmental services, Leeds City Council, said:
“People in Leeds feel strongly that we need to be able to clamp down on unruly behaviour by dogs, as demonstrated in our consultations for both the original orders and these extended powers.

“Law-abiding dog owners and walkers who keep their animals under control and away from places where they could cause a nuisance will still be able to take them out in public as they wish.”

The council’s recent consultation exercise on extending the orders revealed a lot of support for the tightening of the rules on controlling dogs.

Of the 372 people who responded, 90% agreed they should be on leads in cemeteries and crematoria, with 85% in favour of them being banned from school grounds and children’s play areas.

A total 75% wanted to see them on leads on streets, footpaths and adjacent grass verges and 74% agreed that remembrance and wildlife gardens be added to the exclusion zone.

It was also agreed that once a year the orders will be reviewed, with people allowed to come forward and nominate other land for consideration for a ban or other restriction.

For full details about which schools and other public areas will be covered by the revised orders and for further information about keeping your dog on a lead visit the council’s special website information page at www.leeds.gov.uk/dogs

www.leeds.gov.uk/dogs

For media enquiries please contact:
Donna Cox, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 224 3335
e-mail: donna.cox@leeds.gov.uk

ENDS

Wonders of ancient Egypt coming to Leeds



Caption: This sandstone sculpture of Pharaoh Mentuhotep II will be one of the exhibits on display in Leeds City Museum (if used mandatory image credit 'Sandstone head of Pharaoh Mentuhotep II, 2055 - 2004 BC © The Trustees of the British Museum')

The wonders of ancient Egypt will be coming to Leeds in the new year as a major national exhibition goes on display at Leeds City Museum.

The exhibition entitled ‘Pharaoh: King of Egypt’ featuring over 130 objects will be on show from Saturday 11 February to Sunday 17 June 2012 at the museum off Millennium Square with admission being free.

A major touring exhibition from the British Museum, the display has been developed in partnership with Leeds City Museum and the Great North Museum.

The display will explore the lives of the Pharaohs and their role as head of state, chief priest and commander of the army. Themes to be examined include the realities of ruling a complex society and dealing with issues such as international diplomacy, tomb-robbing, civil war and foreigners on the throne.

These stories will be told using objects and artefacts spanning over 3,000 years of history including stunning palace decorations, sculpture, jewellery and papyri.

The exhibition will be free to enter and will feature audio-visual displays, interactives and family trails. It will also be the first major special exhibition of its type to be on display in the museum’s central Leeds Arena.

The exhibition will also complement the famous ‘Leeds Mummy’ Nesyamun, who is on permanent display in the ‘Ancient Worlds’ section of the museum.

Leeds City Council executive member for leisure Councillor Adam Ogilvie said:

“We are really excited to announce this major national exhibition will be coming to Leeds City Museum early in the new year. Ancient Egypt and the mystique of the Pharaohs has a special fascination all of its own and we are confident people of all ages will take the chance to come and see these amazing objects on display for free in Leeds.”

Director of the British Museum Neil MacGregor said:

“This exhibition is a fantastic example of collaboration between the British Museum and its partners across the UK. The British Museum is committed to lending its collection widely across the UK allowing objects to be seen by as many people as possible.”

Further details of the exhibition including some of the standout objects will be announced early in January. For the latest information visit www.leeds.gov.uk/kingofegypt

To find out more about Leeds City Museum, visit the website
Notes to Editors:
• Pharaoh: King of Egypt is supported through the generosity of the Dorset Foundation.

• The tour is organised through the British Museum’s Partnership UK scheme. Partnership UK is the strategic framework for the British Museum’s programme of engagement with audiences throughout the country.

• The British Museum recently worked with Leeds Museums at Lotherton Hall with the exhibition ‘Warriors of the Plains’ in summer 2011.

• As well as Leeds City Museum, the exhibition is also visiting: Great North Museum: Hancock, Dorset County Museum, Dorchester; Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery; Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, Glasgow; Bristol Museum and Art Gallery.

• The Department of Ancient Egypt and Sudan at the British Museum houses the largest collection of Egyptian objects outside Egypt, which illustrate every aspect of the cultures of the Nile Valley, from the Neolithic period (about 10,000 BC) until the twelfth century AD.

For further information on the British Museum please contact:
Esme Wilson - ewilson@britishmuseum.org or call 020 7323 8394.

ENDS

For media enquiries please contact:
Roger Boyde, Senior communications officer,
Leeds City Council, Tel 0113 247 5472
Email: roger.boyde@leeds.gov.uk

Ice surprise as Cube gets cool new look



Captions: Lessons are now available for the Ice Cube, which will feature a new look including a bobsleigh simulator (above)

The annual Ice Cube is to return to Millennium Square in Leeds in the new year complete with a whole new look.

Organiser Leeds City Council has confirmed the popular winter attraction will return to the city centre from Friday 27 January to Sunday 26 February.

Gearing up for its 12th year in Leeds, the Ice Cube has been given a makeover to give it a fresh new feel as well as responding to feedback from visitors in previous years.

Among the changes are a smaller, more family-focused main rink running alongside the nursery rink for younger children. Prices have also been reduced with further savings for LEEDSCard and Breezecard holders, while the booking system has been revamped to allow sessions to be booked in advance for any day the Ice Cube is open.

Two other major changes are the introduction of two new additional features, the first being a 30-metre dry slope ‘Snow Slide’ toboggan run offering the ultimate thrill-seekers’ adrenaline rush.

The second is a bobsleigh simulator, giving a first-hand experience of the speed, twists, and turns of one of the world’s most thrilling winter sports.

For anyone struggling to find the perfect Christmas present, ice skating lessons at the Ice Cube are now available. Open to people all levels and all ages from beginners to more advanced skaters, the sessions which follow the National Ice Skating Association (NISA) Skate UK programme are run by qualified skating professionals.

Priced at £48 per person, the tuition sessions will run for four weeks every Saturday or Sunday morning together with a new slot aimed at adults every Wednesday evening.

Due to popular demand of previous years, those interested in taking part are advised to book early to avoid disappointment as there are only a limited number of places available. To book please call the City Centre Box office on 0113 224 3801 which is open Monday - Saturday between 10am and 6pm, or for further details visit the website at www.leeds.gov.uk/icecube.

Leeds City Council executive member for leisure Councillor Adam Ogilvie said:

“We are really pleased to be able to say Leeds will make the perfect start to the amazing Olympic year with the return of the Ice Cube.

“After last year’s run we decided to look at freshening up the Ice Cube and to respond to what people told us they wanted from the attraction. We think people will be pleasantly surprised when they see the new look, and the spectacular Snow Slide promises to be a really fun and popular new attraction in its own right.”

For further information including pricing and timetables for all of the Ice Cube 2012 attractions, visit www.leeds.gov.uk/icecube for regular updates over the coming weeks.

ENDS

For media enquiries please contact:
Roger Boyde, Senior communications officer,
Leeds City Council, Tel 0113 247 5472
Email: roger.boyde@leeds.gov.uk