Leeds today: car sharing, chill rooms, big numbers and writing

Complaints about the flouting of the car sharing lanes in and around Leeds are in the Yorkshire Post, with claims that the whole scheme is a waste of taxpayer’s money. As the only way people are caught is if there is a police presence on the road, approximately 10 fines per month have been handed out on the A647 since the road opened in 2004, but far fewer on the other 2+ lane projects where police presence is less. The Highways Agency says that commute time is reduced thanks to the 2+ lanes, but BGL understands that the number of drivers frustrated by people using the 2+ lane when there’s only one person in the car is quite high.

The running of four Yorkshire prisons is now a competitive tender process, reports the YEP. This is something BGL had never thought about before – surely prisons are run by the prisons service? Apparently not, they’re run by private contractors and the best tender wins.

The Guardian reports on the Yorkshire businesses getting involved in the HS2 rail link debate as a real north-south divide begins to spring up in Whitehall. Businesses up here are keen for the link to go ahead; NorthYorks Chamber of Commerce chair, Gary Williamson said:

“High-speed rail will bring huge benefits for our region. If the first stage gets the go-ahead, it will influence investment decisions by business for years to come, helping to create new local jobs and secure existing ones.”

However there are a “vocal minority” of groups who are opposed to the scheme, several of whom don’t want to see a train line go through the landscape at the bottom of their gardens.

North Yorks residents are being invited to invest in a new green energy production scheme in the Esk Valley, reports the YEP. A new small-scale hydro-electric turbine is being proposed at Ruswarp on the Esk, which will generate electricity and reduce carbon emissions. This is an interesting community engagement scheme that is looking at a different way of involving residents in large projects.

Leeds Kirkgate Market is introducing a “shop and drop” scheme, reports the BBC, to try and get more people to use the markets. Shoppers will be able to leave their purchases in a secure chill room, a bit like a left luggage service, which will remain open until 6pm. For lunchtime visitors to the market who don’t have a fridge at work to leave their weekly fish in this is a great help.

The Northerner makes note of proposed changes to the Merrion Centre to take advantage of the new Leeds Arena build. A quick look at twitter suggests that more people are excited about a well-known fried chicken retailer opening in Leeds city centre than they are about the rest of the build.

Leeds Savages are meeting tonight for drunken sketching and board game design. From 7:30pm at the Packhorse off Briggate, you too can enjoy sketching out a new, ultimate board game and drinking with fellow sketchers.

Legendary Leeds author Mick McCann (who wrote How Leeds Changed the World, well worth a read) is writing a series on Leeds writers and writers about Leeds on Culture Vultures. The first is about the need for a new “Leeds Movement”;

Clavane and Macmillan grab the throng, assured and confident….they’ve done this before. The rapport builds, as they delve into interesting areas of writing, identity and creativity, delivering perfectly timed funny one-liners, bouncing off each other like the mutant cloning of Morecambe and Wise genetically fused with Chomsky and Foucault.

Do we needs a Leeds movement? Probably yes – the question is how far advanced is it already?

Holt Park Today has a great story on how Pupils and staff from Holy Trinity Primary School in Cookridge helped to bring to life a number with around 400 zeroes. Each zero was designed and decorated by children from the school as part of a half-term project and on July 8th they all lined up in the playground to show the number to a helicopter overhead.

Finally, The Secret Underground Tea Room is visiting secret tea rooms around the area; they paid a visit to The Secret Tea Cup in the Dales. A lovely day out, it seems, amongst descriptions of the menu:

It was lovely to see guests at the table from one of my own Afternoon Teas. I often don’t get time to chat much to my guests so it was really nice to see them again.

That’s it for today! Sorry it was a bit later than usual. As ever if you want to tell us a story then email us on beyondgdnleeds@gmail.com or twitter at @BeyondGdnLeeds. See you tomorrow!

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2 Responses to Leeds today: car sharing, chill rooms, big numbers and writing

  1. The traffic lights at the town end (Armley) of the 2+ A647 seem to be deliberately set to let more single person vehicles through than any in the 2+ lane. At peak times it actually holds up the buses so not much incentive for people to ditch their cars…

  2. Sarah Covell says:

    Well blow me down! This idea was mentioned at one of the first Friends of Kirkgate Market meetings.
    Nice to see the council taking the idea up. I think its a brilliant idea.

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