Thursday, 14 March 2013

New daily fee for Woodhouse Lane car park

A new daily fee is being introduced at the newly refurbished Woodhouse Lane car park.
Following its multi-million pound upgrade last year, it will now cost just £5 to park all day at the council-run facility.

The reduced fee – which comes into effect on Monday 18 March – makes it one of the most competitively priced car parks in the city centre.

With 1,200 spaces and easy access to the city’s main roads, the car park is ideally situated for shoppers, visitors, students and commuters to take advantage of all Leeds city centre has to offer.
During any refurbishment some disruption is unavoidable and many loyal car park users found alternative parking. The new cut-price charge is a very competitive offer for the city’s most up-to-date car park which is well maintained and safe.

The reduced free is being introduced in the run-up to the official opening of Trinity Leeds.
The reduction also follows the decision to review parking charges, agreed at the council’s budget meeting last month.
While the feedback from the earlier consultation into parking charges is being considered, no firm proposals for the extent or levels of charges elsewhere in the city have been agreed yet.

Councillor Mark Dobson, executive member for the environment, said:

“With such a prestigious retail centre set to open its doors next week, we have a great opportunity to entice people back to the Woodhouse Lane car park. People can use it as the starting point of their Leeds experience and enjoy the city’s wide and varied shops, restaurants and entertainment.

“While there are proposals on the table to amend what, where and when we charge for parking across the rest of the city, the detail is still to be agreed. This reduction at our Woodhouse lane car park acknowledges that we need to maintain a delicate balance of providing sufficient parking charged at appropriate times and levels to support our businesses while encouraging the use of public transport to cut congestion and emissions.

“We believe that the £5 daily fee will be an attractive, competitive offer that won’t detract from our aims to promote public transport and support business.”

The new fee is a significant drop from the previous £9 all-day charge and is the best offer in the city at the moment.

The full, new pricing structure for Woodhouse Lane Car Park from Monday 18 March will be:
Monday to Saturday
£2 up to 2 hours
£3 up to 3 hours
£4 up to 4 hours
£5 all day (up to 9 pm)
Sunday £2

For media enquiries please contact:
Amanda Burns, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 395 1577


Views sought for part-night street lighting proposals

Leeds residents are being invited to take part in a consultation about proposals that could see some of the city’s street lamps being turned off at certain times each night.

With over 92,000 street lights around the city, consuming about £4 million of electricity every year, the council is keen to explore ways to help reduce carbon emissions and deal with the continuing increases in energy charges.

A recent study of existing street lighting showed that one in eight lamps on main roads and one in 14 lamps on residential roads could be safely switched off between midnight and 6am.

If introduced, the proposals could potentially save around £1.3 million on energy costs over the next ten years.

Councillor Richard Lewis, executive board member responsible for development and the economy said:
“We are committed to providing best value services to the people of Leeds, and in these challenging economic times this means looking differently at all of the things we do.

“We have already taken steps to reduce the amount of energy that our street lights use by installing more efficient lamps and trimming switching times, but there is potentially more that we could do.

“These proposals would enable us to save money that could then be reinvested into other council services.

“We understand that people may have their reservations about these proposals, which is why we are inviting views from all residents before we take this idea any further. We have also given very careful consideration to the areas that would be included to reduce any negative effects.”

Further investigation to confirm exactly which street lights would form part of the part-night switching proposals will be identified following on site risk assessments using the following principles.

Part-night switching will be avoided:
• On roads with a significant road traffic accident record during the proposed switch-off period.
• In areas with above average record of crime during the proposed switch-off period.
• In areas with a police record of frequent anti-social behaviour during the proposed switch-off period.
• In areas provided with CCTV local authority/police surveillance equipment.
• In areas with sheltered housing and other residences accommodating vulnerable people.
• Around 24hr operational emergency services sites including hospitals.
• At formal pedestrian crossings, subways, and enclosed footpaths and alleyways where one end links to a street that is lit all night.
• Where there are potential hazards on the highway such as roundabouts, central carriageway islands, chicanes and traffic calming features.

The consultation is open from 11 February to 12 April 2013. To take part in the survey please visit , or ask for a copy from your local one stop centre or library.


For media enquiries, please contact;
Claire Macklam, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 395 1578

Leeds Young Film Festival to celebrate new talent and celluloid gems

Caption: The new Disney film ‘The Odd Life of Timothy Green’ featuring (left to right) Jennifer Garner, CJ Adams and Joel Edgerton will be screened at the Leeds Young Film Festival

A celebration of new cinema and some timeless classics will be among the highlights of the 14th Leeds Young Film Festival later this month.

Running from Monday 25 March to Friday 5 April, the festival features a special preview screening of the new Disney fantasy film ‘The Odd Life of Timothy Green’ starring Jennifer Garner, Joel Edgerton and CJ Adams at Hyde Park Picture House on March 28.

Marking some important cinematic milestones plays a key role in this year’s programme, with screenings of Tim Burton’s classic ‘Beetlejuice’ to celebrate its 25th anniversary this year, along with the 80th anniversary of ‘King Kong’, 50 years since Alfred Hitchcock’s ‘The Birds’ terrified audiences and a 25th anniversary screening of anime favourite ‘My Neighbour Totoro’ by Hayao Miyazaki.

The festival presented by Leeds City Council and MediaFish includes a ‘Great Big Family Film Day’ featuring Tim Burton’s latest version of ‘Alice in Wonderland’ which will be accompanied by a special Mad Hatter’s Tea Party. The day at Hyde Park Picture House will also include an appearance by the legendary ‘Mystery Machine’ to coincide with a screening of ‘Scooby Doo! Pirates Ahoy!’

Monsters and aliens day forms another theme of the festival, with showings of ‘The Iron Giant’ and ‘Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit’ alongside ‘King Kong’ and ‘The Birds’.

Neil Gaiman and Lenny Henry’s darkly mysterious TV Series ‘Neverwhere’ will be shown in its entirety at a special Leeds homeless event to coincide with BBC Radio 4’s new adaptation for radio which features a cast including James McAvoy and Benedict Cumberbatch.

The festival will also champion and encourage new cinematic talent from both near and far with screenings of new films like ‘Kirikou and the Men and Women’ by Michele Ocelot, ‘Approved for Adoption’ about the life of comic book artist Jung, ‘Alfie the Little Werewolf’ and ‘Ernest and Celestine’, which proved a major hit at the 2012 Leeds International Film Festival. Other new films to be shown include ‘Oblivion Island’ and ‘Berserk 2’.

Leeds Young Film Festival 2013 also features two prestigious awards for young filmmakers. The 2013 Leeds Young Filmmaker Golden Owl Awards is an ‘Oscars’-style red carpet event at Leeds Town Hall and showcasing emerging talent from across the city. Young Filmmakers Day at the Hyde Park Picture House features The INDIs (Independent Directions) Young Filmmaker Award, which is the UK’s only film award solely championing and celebrating the talent of the UK’s young independent filmmakers aged under 25.

There will also be workshops and talks by industry professionals, with Caroline Maston hosting another of her incredibly popular ‘Homemade: DIY special effects’ workshops. There will also be ‘Tall Tales and Local Legends: Storytelling in Leeds’ with local storyteller Matthew Bellwood, a Minecraft Mystery Workshop, a guide on how to make your own film festival, and workshops dedicated to robots, blogging and animation. There will also be a celebration of the 100th birthday of the British Board of Film Classification with a free BBFC masterclass explaining the editing and classification process for dark urban tale ‘Chronicle’.

This year’s festival will also see a piece of work produced during the event itself as part of a new BFI Film Academy called ‘Beta Filmworks’. Aimed at 16-19 year olds who are interested in pursuing a career in film, a group of 15 young people will be selected to work over four days to produce a documentary on the role of digital technology in film.

Working with mentors Craig Lawson (Senior Producer at Access Moving Image) and Alex Ramseyer-Bache (Director of award-winning feature documentary ‘We Are Poets’), the group will help plan, shoot and edit the documentary which will be screened at the end of the festival.

Beta Filmworks is funded by the Department for Education and run in collaboration with Reel Solutions, Access Moving Image and the City Learning Centres, and anyone wishing to take part can apply by emailing or calling 0113 247 8489 before the deadline of 5pm on Friday 22 March.

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

“The Leeds Young Film Festival is a fantastic event for young people to not only come and see some wonderful films but also to learn more about how the film industry works by taking part in some of the superb workshops and masterclasses.

“The line-up of films this year looks great so we look forward to seeing lots of people enjoying themselves and having a great time.”

The Leeds Young Film Festival is also a supporter of child friendly Leeds, the ambition to make Leeds the best city for children and young people to thrive and look forward to a brighter future

Director of Leeds Young Film Festival Martin Grund said:

“This year we’re very proud to support the child friendly Leeds initiative as we’ve always believed that children and young people should enjoy the amazing culture that Leeds has to offer.

“For our 14th edition we have again searched the planet to bring the best new and unseen films to Leeds, along with some fantastic workshops and masterclasses. It’s never been a better time to be a young film fan or filmmaker in the city.”

Tickets are now available for this year’s Leeds Young Film Festival, and for more information visit

Notes to editors:

Leeds Young Film Festival is presented by MediaFish and Leeds City Council. MediaFish is a co-operative of young people aged 14 - 19 from Leeds that are facilitated by Leeds Young Film. MediaFish are involved in the organisation, programme and marketing of the Leeds Young Film Festival and provide a variety of film screenings, workshops and masterclasses for all ages year round.

Golden Tickets are on sale through and City Centre Box Office on 0113 224 3801 and are priced at: £15.00 Single Golden Ticket, £25 Double Golden Ticket and £40 Family Golden Ticket Plus. For full details visit

For more information on the child friendly Leeds initiative go to


For media enquiries please contact:
Roger Boyde,
Leeds City Council press office,
Tel 0113 247 5472

Council to continue funding community police officers in the city

Picture caption: (from left) Mark Burns-Williamson and Cllr Peter Gruen with two city centre PCSOs

Council chiefs have agreed to continue to fund Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) for a further three years as part of a drive to keep communities safe.

At a meeting of the council’s executive board on Wednesday 13 March 2013 members agreed to invest around £1.5million each year until March 2016, subject to council budgets allowing this.

Leeds has benefited from the work of PCSOs for a number of years. There are currently 310 PCSOs working across the city – 165 of these posts are part funded through council budgets.

Over the past year more emphasis has been put on PCSOs developing joint working with a number of other services across the city. This has already seen officers work with the out of hours noise nuisance team to deal with noise and anti-social behaviour hotspots, contribution to environmental enforcement action and better sharing of intelligence.

Councillor Peter Gruen, chair of Safer Leeds said:

“Police Community Support Officers play an important role in our city in keeping our communities safe and provide a highly visible policing presence that reassures the public.

“Despite the budget pressures that the council currently faces we have continued to fund the roles and will continue to do so into the future.

“There has already been an increase in successful joint working between PCSOs and other services and we want this to become even more developed over the next few years.”

Mark Burns-Williamson, police and crime commissioner for West Yorkshire said:


“The Police Community Support Officers which the council is matching the investment by the Police to fund play a vital part in keeping people safe, and feeling safe. When out and about in Leeds, like in Beeston where I was with Inspector Ackerman and his Neighbourhood Police Team a few days ago, I heard first hand how much people really value those they see and speak to in their neighbourhoods every day. Without these vital PCSOs we wouldn’t be able to keep the people on the beat local residents know and trust.”

“Despite the huge cuts to funding for the Police, £100 million cut resulting in 2000 jobs to be lost, and the cuts to the council from government, the fact these PCSOs has been protected shows the commitment of the council and will make a difference on the streets for people right across Leeds, who like me want the Police working together with communities and the key people locally to keep the streets safe.”

Notes to editors:

The role of a PCSO is to contribute to the policing of neighbourhoods, primarily through visible patrols with the purpose of reassuring the public. They tackle anti-social behaviour in public places, and respond to concerns raised by residents and elected members.

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