Leeds today: Incinerators and heart units, fake vodka and poo-throwing.

Morning! While Mike is buried under piles of revision and cake, I’ve stepped in to do you a rapid round-up of the best of Leeds today.

A debate that has been raging in Leeds for a long time now got additional fuel yesterday, with the designs for the proposed incinerator being released to the public. The waste treatment plant, which could provide power to thousands of homes in Leeds, is reported to be able to save around £200m in landfill taxes over the next 25 years. Anti-incinerator campaigners are concerned about emissions and increased pollution for nearby residents of the proposed site in Cross Green.

Another big debate that’s been going on for a while is the proposed changes to the children’s cardiac surgery services in Leeds (which also provides services throughout the region). A fairly epic report has been released by the the Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee which is made up of 15 councils across Yorkshire and the Humber which calls for the unit to stay open, reports the BBC. This is an emotive and difficult topic to deal with, and I think we’ll be seeing a lot more about it in the future.

South Leeds Life is reporting on the mysterious signs appearing through Holbeck, with snippets of stories of Holbeck past. The signs are part of the ‘Original Bearings’ project by The Holbect Institute, and I for one would love to see these spread out across the city. A little bit of history never did anyone any harm.

Speaking of doing harm, drinkers around West Yorkshire are being warned to be aware of bottles of fake vodka which has been found to contain potentially dangerous chemicals. Drop Vodka, being sold in off-licences through Leeds and Wakefield, is dosed up with chloroform and cleaning fluids. Yum. If you’ve got a bottle in your desk drawer, or you see somewhere selling it, please contact Trading Standards.

Meanwhile, Darren over at My Life in Leeds has an interesting article on Life in Georgian Leeds; part of an ongoing series of different timescales in Leeds history. These are really fascinating glimpses into life before Harvey Nicks and Squares; and the current article has a section on poo-throwing. What more could you want?

Leeds has lost its low-cost gloss, reports Insider News Yorkshire. Previously the best city in Europe for value for money office space, according to a new report by The European Cities Monitor, we’ve dropped to third place behind Warsaw and Berlin. However, we’re still placed ten places ahead of  our arch-nemesis Manchester, so it’s not all bad news.

I can’t find any news about this, so has anyone been to the new ‘designer café’ and shop underneath Leeds Art Gallery? Opening yesterday, it seems to offer more of a ‘loungy’ experience to the Tiled Hall Café above it, and the artist’s impressions look quite swanky. There’s nothing on the Leeds Art Gallery official site, only this press release, so first hand experience would be great to hear.

The Leeds Talking Newspaper is looking for a new home reports the YEP, after difficulties arose over the building they are currently in. Based at Shine View in Headingley, changes to the council structure have meant that the building is not available in the evenings when the newspaper is recorded, and volunteers are having to look elsewhere for recording space. They only need space around a table for one day and evening a week, so they could fit quite neatly into an existing office, if there are any kind-hearted business people out there…

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