Leeds today: Crime, incompetence, exhibitions, jobs, social media.

Today we look at crime, incompetence (and a £1m bill), making stuff, baking stuff and exhibitions!

The map of crime in Leeds does seem to be focused on Studentville, according to the YEP. Whilst crime is still down – what used to be “Britain’s most burgled street” has seen no burglaries during the month of May – 183 crimes were still reported in that month in Hyde Park. Meanwhile, the city centre was the scene of 875 crimes, 67 of them on Briggate alone. Whilst the article was more concerned with where students are moving to it failed to note that crime in Beeston has trended upwards since the start of the year; 503 reported crimes in January, 753 in May with a peak of over 790 in April. The tool used to determine this was www.police.uk.

Also on the YEP is the shocking news that the Leeds taxpayer is out £1M in legal fees, thanks to poor advice from the Local Government Minister, Eric Pickles. In an event in Birmingham the Lib Dem leader, Cllr Stewart Golton tackled the minister on the question of building on greenfield sites. The article says:

He [Cllr Golton] told the top Tory that Leeds City Council faces a £1m legal bill after fruitlessly trying to protect green field sites against landowners who wish to build on them. Mr Pickles told councils across the country last year that he was abolishing targets set by the previous government for how many houses to build in a year and that they could set their own targets. In Leeds this led to a number of applications for house building on green field sites being rejected by the council on the basis they could make the decisions.

Many of these rejections were then challenged in the courts, and all of them failed. Permission to build was granted and the legal fees were passed to LCC. In affairs like this BGL tries to remain neutral but it is becoming apparent to BGL that Eric Pickles really doesn’t give the tiniest amount of thought to proposals beyond “oh, that’s a good/bad idea” and couldn’t find his backside if he were sat on both hands.

The BBC reports that The Royal Mail is starting work on a new post sorting centre at Stourton. The centre, which will move 500 jobs from sorting offices at York and Bradford, will eventually employ about 1000 people. When it is completed the extended centre at Stourton will sort mail for the Leeds, Bradford, Harrogate, Halifax, Huddersfield, Wakefield and York postcodes.

Exploring Leeds’ tour of libraries continues and they say:

Day Two of touring Leeds’ closing libraries was a very different day to Day One. The morning was spent jabbering about the quest with folks on Twitter, a couple of librarians in person and I even ended up chatting to a couple of people at BBC Leeds about it (watch this space).

Day three has also been posted and ends on a sad note; “Maybe I am missing some vital fact that visiting the library and reading the user statistics didn’t reveal but… I can’t see that it is anything other than crazy to close this library“. This has been a fascinating series and well worth reading.

Creative Review takes a look at the University of Leeds Graphic Design degree show portfolio. The highlights they’ve chosen are certainly interesting and one or two particularly funny examples are there.

Speaking of exhibitions, tonight’s Exposure Leeds meeting is all about exhibiting yourself and your work. The monthly meetings of the photography group are an interesting discussion and seminar on all stages of photography and photographers, from amateurs and professionals alike who all have a passion for taking photos. The talk tonight (6-6:30pm at Old Broadcasting House) should be of interest to anybody thinking about staging their own exhibition and some lucky people who bring along a portfolio can get advice from the speaker, Louise Atkinson.

The Great Yorkshire Show is coming, and social media will be there! The Guardian Northerner sees guest blogger (and well-known social media surgeon) John Popham talk about getting people to work with social media properly and getting people from rural areas thinking about how twitter and blogs can work for them. John says:

“People in rural communities often try online social networks but give up as poor rural broadband makes it a very frustrating experience. This is one of the factors we will have to take into account when giving advice at the Show, but there are ways in which people can make use of social media on slow connections. One of the joys of this way of working is that you don’t necessarily expect a reply straight away.”

Should be an interesting stall to see!

The Secret Tea Room talks about being recertified by the Environmental Health Officer; a necessary process if you make food to sell in your domestic kitchen. Not helped by watching programmes about how dirty your house can be, the anxiety levels can be high. Will the kitchen pass being visited by the EHO?

Finally today, over on Culture Vultures one of the Hope & Social musical collective, Ben Denison, offers people the chance to get 2 tickets for the upcoming H&S Garden Party at the end of the month in Mirfield. If you fancy your chances of decorating a wooden letter for a mobile, take a look and see what you think. BGL has bought tickets to the garden party anyway; it promises to be an outstanding way of spending a Sunday (and, in one case, a 12th wedding anniversary).

That’s it for today! Tomorrow we take a look at time banking, the Bingley Show and chucking wellies. As ever, if you have something to say on these or other subjects then say it! Email, twitter, or collar us on the street (if you know what we look like).

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One Response to Leeds today: Crime, incompetence, exhibitions, jobs, social media.

  1. Mike says:

    Chestnut avenue in Hyde Park was always claimed to be Britain’s most burgled street. But this was a ‘factoid’ made up by Tim Gallagher in 1995, a student who lived on the street, and editor of the University Newspaper at the time. He made the entirely false claim in the paper, and it was dutifully picked up by the Nationals.

    Gallagher is now a producer on Sky News!

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