Friday, 6 June 2014

Public consultation opens regarding future of two city golf courses

Leeds City Council wishes to seek the views of residents regarding a proposal to close Gotts Park and Middleton Park golf courses.

Work has previously been undertaken by the council and representatives of each club to find a suitable business case to keep both courses open, which are currently making a combined loss of £217,000 per year. In January 2013, the council deferred a previous decision to close both courses so further options could be explored to see if a new way of delivering the service could be found.

The consultation document will be available to download from Friday 6th June 2014 to 4th July 2014 and can also be viewed at both golf course locations.

If the proposals to close both golf courses are given the go-ahead, the council will aim to establish Leeds’ first Arboretum at Middleton Park and the creation of the Benjamin Gotts Country Park which will provide 80 hectares of open space for public use. A further consultation on both of these proposals will be undertaken if a decision to close Middleton Park and Gotts Park golf courses is agreed.

Leeds City Council currently manages two other golf course sites, one at Roundhay Park and the other at Temple Newsam.

Councillor Mark Dobson, Leeds City Council’s executive member for the environment said:

"A public consultation has now opened on the council’s proposal to close both Middleton Park and Gotts Park golf courses and I would urge anyone who wishes to have their voice heard to please do so before the deadline.

"This has not been an easy decision to put forward. I would like to assure people it would not have been considered if we were not confident there was other accessible and affordable provision available in both local areas for people to continue playing golf.

"We have been working with both clubs to see if a suitable business case could be found to deliver this service, and as yet these investigations have not been successful. Given the significant challenges that the council faces and the combined loss of both golf courses which currently totals £217,000 per year, it is simply unstainable and impossible for us to continue as before."

Notes to editors:

You can feedback your views in the following ways: Fill in the form starting on page 8 and send it to Gotts Park Golf Course Review and / or Middleton Park Golf Course Review, Parks and Countryside, Farnley Hall, Hall Lane, Leeds LS12 5HA or fill in the form starting on page 8 and e-mail us at

For media enquiries, please contact;
Colin Dickinson, Leeds City Council press office (0113) 39 51578

City chiefs meet new Leeds United owner

Leeds City Council leader Councillor Keith Wakefield and council chief executive Tom Riordan met with new Leeds United owner Massimo Cellino yesterday (Thursday).

The discussion centred around the important role the club plays in the local community and how Leeds United and the council can continue to work closely together for the good of the city.

Councillor Wakefield said: “We all want Leeds United back where they belong in the Premiership and both Tom and I felt yesterday’s discussion was very productive.

“It is clear Mr Cellino has significant work to do at Leeds United, which will come as no surprise to Leeds fans, and the council is keen to work closely with him both now and in future as we all recognise the club’s importance to the fans and the city.

“Leeds United also plays a significant role in community life and I took the opportunity to highlight the excellent work of the Leeds United Foundation and encourage the club’s continued involvement in and support for that work.

“I look forward to further meetings and the development of a positive partnership between the club’s new owner and the council.”


Issued by:
Stuart Robinson
Communications Officer
Leeds City Council
Tel: 0113 224 3937

Major development comes back on line

A major 750 apartment development mothballed due to the economic downturn is likely to be revived.

The 1.9 hectare development on two temporary car parks between Manor Road, Ingram Road and Sweet Street falls in the Holbeck Urban Village regeneration area on the city centre’s South Bank.

Close by construction of the Leeds rail station’s £17 million south entrance recently started in earnest sparking an increase in activity in the area.

The scheme would consist of 91 studios, 319 one bed, 335 two bed and five three bed apartments.

Commercial floor space of 696sqm facing onto Sweet Street would also be available along with 263 car parking spaces accessed from two points on Ingram Street and 352 cycle spaces as Leeds Core Cycle network would be easily accessible from the site.

The draft proposal was presented to City Plans Panel at Leeds Civic Hall yesterday by Ingram Row Limited to allow members to comment on how the scheme has developed since it was first proposed in 2012.

A full planning application is expected later in the year.

Councillor Peter Gruen, executive member for neighbourhoods, planning and personnel said:

“It is encouraging to see activity returning to Holbeck Urban Village and we are focussed on the need to provide enough quality, accessible homes to meet the city’s growing population, while protecting the quality of the environment and respecting community identity. The proposals have the potential to make a significant contribution to the provision of new homes in the city, in a brownfield location.”

Over the last ten years, a mix of offices, residential, and supporting retail and food and drink uses have been developed in Holbeck Urban Village at the Round Foundry, Tower Works, Marshall’s Mill, Manor Mills, and The Mint.

Councillor Jim McKenna who chaired this meeting of the City Plans Panel said:

“It is important this development is fitting and suitable for the area. We want the best possible result for potential residents living in these apartments and the surrounding area that is why we consider each application with the upmost care.

"The revised scheme is a great improvement of the approved scheme and I welcome the additional enlarged public open space and landscaping and planting that is now being proposed. The active street frontage and small private gardens at street level also brings a ‘continental setting’ to Leeds that members have been requesting for some time from developers. Perhaps this scheme, in its maturity, can set a bench mark for other quality developments in our city.”


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

New investment in multi-storey safety

People living in multi-storey blocks in the West of Leeds are to get up-to-date CCTV as part of plans to provide a remote concierge service for them.

Work done in the last two years, combined with more intensive housing management, has improved resident satisfaction and security at blocks which have had CCTV installed. Councillors now want to make sure all the multi-storey blocks the council manage in the city benefit from this.

Councillor Peter Gruen, Leeds City Council executive board member with responsibility for neighbourhoods, planning and support services said:

“We know a lot of anti-social behaviour has been sorted out already in multi-storey blocks in the city thanks to the use of CCTV which is why so many residents have welcomed it. West Yorkshire Police have used images in a number of high profile cases, which is just one indication of its value.

“With the creation of Housing Leeds we have been keen to integrate the system across the city so that we can make the most of efficiencies from a wider, better network of CCTV. By installing updated equipment we will have better connectivity, more server capacity and be able to use the system more effectively.”

As part of the installation program, all residents in multi-storey blocks and local councillors will be consulted so that the roll-out of new system is matched to their needs and any concerns can be addressed.

- Ends -

For media enquiries, please contact:

Phil Morcom

Communications and Marketing team
Leeds City Council

4th Floor West, Civic Hall, Leeds, LS1 1UR

Mobile: 07891 276270
Tel: 0113 224 3602
Fax: 0113 247 4736

Work of volunteers celebrated at special Leeds Civic Hall event

Caption: The Lady Mayoress Edna Murray and the Lord Mayor of Leeds Councillor Thomas Murray with Trude Silman, who has dedicated many years of her life to volunteering.

The selfless work of volunteers has been recognised as part of a special event held at Leeds Civic Hall.

Hosted by the Lord Mayor of Leeds Councillor Thomas Murray, volunteers from across the city were invited to attend the civic hall as part of an occasion which celebrated their outstanding dedication and commitment to helping others.

Included on the night was a speech by Natasha Mort from Voluntary Action Leeds, who talked passionately of the tremendous difference volunteering can make in communities and the economic value of volunteering to the city each year, which is approximately £38.5 million.

Six current volunteers also shared their motivation and experiences at the event. The youngest speaker was 18-year-old Rebecca Goff who has been encouraging younger children to read more books with Leeds City Council’s libraries service since she was 14. At the other end of the scale was Trude Silman, who is now over 90-years-old. She has been volunteering for most of her life. Trude explained that her commitment to ‘put something back and do something for others’ was shaped by her experience as a nine-year-old refugee of Germany during the Nazi era where she was so overwhelmed by the kindness of the many families who took her in. Others who shared their story included; Sam Leigh of the Nigerian Community Association Leeds, Charlotte Bone of the Department of Health, Amrit Choda of the Ahead Partnership and Marvina Babs-Apata of Angel of Youth.

In a real highlight, long-standing volunteers with 30 years of service, Rosalind Bickler, Jane Brown, Paul Box, Trude Silman, Marian Padbury, Breege Walsh, Malcolm Padbury and Trude were also presented with certificates and thanked for their service by the Lord Mayor.

After the awards were presented, a young poet, Sukbir Kaur who is involved with the Angel Of Youth project, brought the event to a close with a performance piece about’ volunteering and giving’.

Recognition of volunteers and their hard work forms part of National Volunteer week held this year from June 1 to June 7.

The Lord Mayor of Leeds, Councillor Thomas Murray said:

"There can be no doubt that the contribution that volunteers make to the city is priceless-they are absolute diamonds.

"Volunteers are very much the unsung heroes of our city, who in seeking no reward or fame, have an outstanding commitment to helping others.

"It was brilliant therefore that in a small way, we were able to celebrate and thank many of our volunteers for their hard work as part of this event at Leeds Civic Hall.

"It was an absolute honour for me to also meet a number of long standing volunteers and show our gratitude for their 30 years of service. Some of their personal stories were amazing, and they continue to be fantastic role models for a new generation of people starting out in volunteering work."

Notes to editors:

Volunteers’ Week is an annual event which takes place on 1-7 June. It celebrates the contribution made by millions of volunteers across the UK. It’s run by NCVO in partnership with Volunteer Development Scotland, Volunteer Now (Northern Ireland) and Wales Council for Voluntary Action.

Visit for more information.

For media enquiries, please contact;

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