Friday, 4 October 2013

Street lights part-night switch-off set to begin

From next week some street lights in Leeds will start being switched off for part of the night in order to reduce energy costs and carbon emissions.

Over the next three years a programme of works will be carried out which when completed will mean 8,000 of the city’s 92,000 street lights will be switched off between midnight and 5:30am.

The part night-time switch-off will bring about savings of approximately £1.3million over 10 years and reduce street lighting carbon emissions by 4.7 per cent a year.

The project will begin in outer areas of the city, starting in Garforth and Swillington then Adel and Wharfedale, Otley and Yeadon. The team will then work inwards until they reach the city centre, which will not be affected. The work will be carried out in two phases, with the first phase seeing approximately 3,250 lights on main traffic roads being switched off.

The second phase of the programme will see the team repeat the process but this time turning off a total of 4,750 lights on residential streets.

A partnership made up of Leeds City Council, emergency services, crime reduction, community safety and road safety representatives has carried out risk assessments to decide which lights in each area should be switched off. A public consultation exercise was also conducted between February and April this year to influence the proposal.

Leeds City Council executive member for the economy and development Councillor Richard Lewis said:

“While the primary reason for doing this is to save money and help cut carbon emissions, we would like to stress that road safety and the impact on crime remains of the utmost importance.

“The assessments over which lights can be switched off and which can’t have been thorough and conducted by a team effort involving the judgements of all key stakeholders as well as the feedback received from the public.

“We hope people will not really notice much of a difference, but it is important to say we do have the flexibility to turn the lights back on again if major problems arise; we do hope though that will not be necessary.”

A strict criteria has been followed to determine which lights are switched off or not. Lights will not be switched off in the following locations:

• On roads with a significant road traffic accident record during the switch-off period.
• In areas with above average record of crime during the switch-off period.
• In areas with a police record of frequent anti-social behaviour during the switch-off period.
• In areas provided with CCTV local authority/police surveillance equipment.
• In areas with sheltered housing and other residences accommodating vulnerable people.
• In areas 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.
• In areas where there are potential hazards on the highway such as roundabouts, central carriageway islands, chicanes and traffic calming features.
• Where bus stops are in use during the switch-off period.

The impact of the switch-off will be closely monitored, with the option being available to turn lights back on should there be any adverse effect on road safety or crime levels.

Warning signs will be placed to give people advance notice of the switch-off and road markings will be upgraded or installed in switch-off areas to maintain safety.

In addition, the council and Safer Leeds will provide advice to communities on precautions to protect themselves and their properties if they are significantly concerned about the switch-off. Similar schemes have been adopted in many other parts of the country in recent years.

More information about the switch-off will be available at or by emailing or calling 0113 222 4407.


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

Tropical World refurbishment plans set to move to next phase

Caption: Phase 2 of refurbishment work at Tropical World could begin in the new year.

The next phase of refurbishment plans for a popular visitor attraction in Leeds, are set to be discussed by senior councillors next week.

This follows a report submitted to a meeting of Leeds City Council’s executive board on Wednesday 9 October, which sets out the design of a new toilet block with changing facilities and new conservatory extension at The Arnold and Marjorie Ziff Tropical World in Roundhay Park.

These proposals form part of a £720,000 improvement scheme which was given the go-ahead by the executive board last year. As part of the work, there will also be a renovation of the nocturnal closure, along with the major refurbishment of the existing aquarium.

As part of phase 1, a range of improvements have already been completed at Tropical World. These include the development of a new entrance space and children’s party and education zone, along with the introduction of an exciting new ‘walk-over’ crocodile closure that allows visitors to see at close-hand the three Morelet’s crocodiles housed in the attraction.

If given the final go-ahead by councillors, work on phase 2 at Tropical World, which is home to a wide-variety of animals, including meerkats, butterflies, birds, fish, reptiles, nocturnal monkeys, bats and crocodiles will begin in January 2014, and is set to be completed by April 2014.

Councillor Mark Dobson, executive member for the environment said:

"The Arnold and Marjorie Ziff Tropical World is one of our city’s most popular visitor attractions, and I am delighted that the executive board is now in a position to give the final go-ahead to proceed with phase 2 of our wide-ranging refurbishment programme.

"The work which was undertaken in phase 1, which included a new ‘walk-over’ crocodile enclosure, is absolutely fantastic, and phase 2 promises to be equally impressive with the addition of a new walk through aquarium.

"These improvements could not have been made without the generous backing of the Ziff family, and I would like to thank them again for their continued support which is massively appreciated."

Notes to editors:

Tropical World at Roundhay Park is one of Leeds’ most popular family attractions, with over 300,000 visits being made every year.

Opening times:

Summer: 10am until 6pm (last admission at 5.30pm)

Winter: 10am until 4pm (last admission at 3.30pm)


• Adults: £3.40

• LeedsCard £2.70

• ‘Extra’ cardholders £1.70

• Breezecard £1.70

• 5-15 year olds £2.30

• Under 5s Free

Children under the age of 14 must be accompanied by an adult.


Telephone: 0113 2370495 (10am - 4pm)

For media enquiries, please contact;

Colin Dickinson, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 39 51578


Showing the way with Leeds health and wellbeing expertise

Caption: Councillor Lisa Mulherin, Leeds City Council Executive Board Member for Health and Wellbeing with Àngels Chacón, URBACT 4D Cities Lead Partner

Leeds has showcased pioneering examples of best practice in work being done to tackle health inequalities and increase wellbeing to European experts visiting the city this week. This is part of the URBACT 4D Cities project, where 8 European cities are working together to develop strategies “from health to wealth” by looking for joint, effective and sustainable solutions for developing better, healthier lives and job opportunities.

A range of experts had the opportunity to see at first hand the innovative work being done by health and care teams to deliver better services and better outcomes for communities in Leeds during visits to Armley Helping Hands, the Kippax Integrated Health and Social Care Team and South Leeds Independence Centre (SLIC).

Councillor Lisa Mulherin, Leeds City Council Executive Board Member for Health and Wellbeing said:
“We know that communities in Leeds face real challenges both now and in coming years as changes in the economy, lifestyle and life expectancy impact on the health and social services they need. We aren’t alone in this – communities in the rest of the country and across Europe face very similar challenges. Leeds is blazing a trail with ways of delivering services which meet some of those challenges and we are delighted that other cities want to learn from our examples of good practice.”

SLIC is a community rehabilitation unit, which opened in April 2013. It is an innovative 40 bed facility, integrating health and social care, where patients are supported in their rehabilitation and recovery.

By having a team with nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and clinical assistants, with access to other health care professionals such as dieticians, joint care managers and medical practitioners, patients can have care provided which is tailored to their specific circumstances. The result is recovery can occur more quickly and individuals are better placed to regain independence and health.

As part of the Europe-wide Healthy Cities Network, which puts patients and carers at the centre of healthcare innovation, Leeds has been able to share and learn from best practice in tackling the worsening health inequalities which blight deprived neighbourhoods.

Rob Webster, Leeds Community Healthcare NHS Trust Chief Executive, said:
“Leeds is uniquely placed to be at the forefront of health innovation. Its network of health organisations, clinical and research resources and centres of health educational excellence, means it can achieve the highest rates of innovation and help transform health outcomes locally, nationally and internationally.”

Àngels Chacón, URBACT 4D Cities Lead Partner said:
“Health-related businesses contribute to economic growth and improved health outcomes, but this isn’t just about technical solutions, it is about finding innovative ways to help people live healthier lives. There is a real opportunity for the delivery of better health and care to also deliver economic growth and strength.”

Notes to editors

Best City for Health and Wellbeing
For Leeds to be the best city for health and wellbeing, it means making sure that people can access high quality health and social care services: but it also means that Leeds is a Child Friendly city, a city that creates opportunities for business, jobs and training: a city made up of sustainable communities and of course a great place to live. In short, our vision is that Leeds will be a healthy and caring city for all ages, where people who are the poorest, improve their health the fastest.

The board will focus on five outcomes:
• People will live longer and have healthier lives
• People will live full, active and independent lives
• People will enjoy the best possible quality of life
• People are involved in decisions made about them
• People will live in healthy and sustainable communities

URBACT is a European exchange and learning programme promoting sustainable urban development. The URBACT 4D project aims to stimulate successful integrated policies on Health Innovation so they become driving forces for local development, both at economic and social levels.

For interview requests or further information, contact:

Phil Morcom
Communications and Marketing team
Leeds City Council

Tel: Please use temporary number 0772 227 5370
Fax: 0113 247 4736

Special delivery as football legends bring award-winning meal to local pensioner

A pair of Leeds United legends will get a kick out of delivering an award-winning lunch to a local meals on wheels customer.

Dedicated Leeds fan Dennis Oxley, 88, will welcome former Whites stars Peter Lorimer and Eddie Gray to his Holbeck home on Monday (Oct 7).

Mr Oxley, who lives close to United’s Elland Road ground, normally has meals delivered to his house by a member of Leeds City Council’s Community Meals Leeds team.

But as the city gears up to take part in National Community Meals Week next month, the team has decided to make Monday’s lunch extra special by drafting in the two ex-footballers.

Councillor Peter Gruen, Leeds City Council’s executive member for Neighbourhoods, Planning and Support Services, said:
“It’s wonderful to see that two of the city’s footballing greats will be stepping in to help highlight the excellent work done by our Community Meals Leeds team.

“The team’s hard work and dedication means that more than 500 elderly and vulnerable people around the city can be sure of getting a hot meal each and every day of the year, helping to give them the peace of mind they need to live independently in their own homes.”

Councillor Adam Ogilvie, executive member for Adult Social Care added:
“The work of the Community Meals Leeds team makes a huge difference to the lives of some of our most vulnerable residents. The team has been delivering hot meals now for more than 40 years and the service they provide is a real lifeline for the city’s elderly people.”

Community Meals Leeds was recently announced as the winner of the National Association of Care Catering’s (NACC) National Community Meals Award.

The prestigious accolade recognised the country’s best authority, business or individual providing a meals service to elderly and vulnerable residents.

National Community Meals Week runs from Nov 11-17 and celebrates the nation’s community meals services.

Community Meals Leeds is available to anyone in the city unable to prepare a meal themselves and residents may be entitled to receive a subsidy if they are assessed as having critical or substantial needs.

For more information on the service, contact Community Meals Leeds on 0113 247 8577. The office is open Monday to Friday between 8.30am and 4pm.

Former attacking midfielder Peter Lorimer played more than 770 games for Leeds United during two spells at the club, scoring 255 goals.

Ex-Whites winger Eddie Gray appeared 454 times for Leeds during the 60s, 70s and 80s.


-Reporters and photographers are invited to see Peter Lorimer and Eddie Gray deliver a meal to Mr Oxley at Heath Rise, Holbeck, LS11 8UH on Monday, October 7 at 1pm.

-For more information or to confirm attendance, please contact:
Stuart Robinson
Communications Officer
Leeds City Council
Tel: 0113 224 3937

Inner city housing regeneration project gets started

Caption:From left; Jon Hinchliffe (sc4l), Francesca Taylor (local housing manager, Leeds City Council) and Cllr Peter Gruen (Leeds City Council)

Work has started this week on the long awaited Little London, Beeston Hill and Holbeck project with the first programme of refurbishment.

Leeds City Council in partnership with sustainable communities for Leeds (sc4L) have been on site from 30 September 2013 with the first phase of refurbishment taking place across 40 properties in the Little London and Holbeck area.

Work will start in Little London on the external refurbishment of properties on Carlton Carr, Carlton Gardens and a small number of properties on Carlton Rise which will include new windows, doors and wall insulation. Following on from this programme, the internal refurbishment works will take place including fitting new kitchens and bathrooms across the properties.

In Holbeck work will start fitting external wall insulation to the Meynell Heights multi storey block with internal works beginning next year.

The overall project will see local communities benefit from the refurbishment of the 1245 council homes, and the construction of 388 new council homes to rent with environmental improvements to the estates. Capital investment of over £120million over the next three and a half years will provide training and employment schemes leading to jobs, work placements, apprenticeships and social enterprise opportunities.

Alongside the start of refurbishment works, sustainable communities for Leeds (sc4L) takes over the repairs and maintenance service on Monday 30th September 2013 for the project, with Keepmoat carrying out the repairs on its behalf. The call centre has been moved into the Holbeck area to ensure it is right at the heart of the local communities it is serving.

Job fairs will be taking place towards the end of the October in the three different areas with various vacancies available - for more information is available via emailing

Councillor Peter Gruen, Leeds City Council executive board member with responsibility for neighbourhoods, planning and support services said:
“This project will play a significant role in rejuvenating local communities across the Little London, Beeston Hill and Holbeck areas of the city and it is great to see work starting on this project.

“Already Keepmoat property services, one of the main contractors for the new services, have moved their head office into the centre of the Holbeck regeneration area so as to be closer to the community they are serving.

“I look forward to seeing all the work taking place over the first few years of this project, and no doubt local residents will be looking forward to seeing the improvements to their communities. “

Jon Hinchliff, sc4L General Manager said:
“We are delighted that we are starting the improvement and maintenance on the Little London, Beeston Hill and Holbeck Project

The commencement of these works marks for us the tangible starting point of our long term commitment to the local communities to improve and maintain the Leeds City Council properties in the project area.

The construction and improvement works which will be delivered from Keepmoat Regeneration’s new office in Little London together with the delivery of the repairs & maintenance service which we are now providing from the newly opened offices in Holbeck, will provide positive support to the regeneration of these areas.

We are looking forward to the up-coming job fairs as they will provide a further opportunity in the delivery of the wider regeneration aims of Leeds City Council, sc4L and our delivery partners Keepmoat. ”

Notes to editors:
The three jobs fairs are taking place at the following locations from 2pm – 7pm over the following dates;
Monday 21st October at St. Matthews Community Centre, Holbeck, LS11 9NR

Thursday 24th October at Tiger 11, Beeston Road, LS11 8ND

Tuesday 29th October at Carlton Croft Meeting Room, Little London, LS7 1HF


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