Does this Leeds suburb have too many bars?

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A long-term Chapel Allerton resident has spoken out about the dark side of the area's popularity with young house buyers.

The woman, who does not wish to be named, believes the north Leeds suburb has become saturated with bars and restaurants that have changed the area's character.

It comes after estate agents Stoneacre named Chapel Allerton as one of Leeds's boom areas for house price growth - and even described it as the 'Hampstead of the north' in a reference to the exclusive London enclave.

"We are now besieged by fast food shops and eating and drinking establishments with associated litter and taxi traffic. If people come here to eat and drink maybe the companies that host them could do more to clean up. The property scramble is also encouraged by estate agents who stand to gain from bidding competitions.

"Developers come along and change an area, and estate agents control whole areas. People are scrambling to buy now because they think it's their only chance, so overcrowded, tiny, poor quality units are being built. It's good when properties are being improved, but most are just going to buy-to-let landlords.

"I think we have reached capacity when it comes to bars and restaurants - the old Yorkshire Bank building is being marketed for food and drink uses, but the rent is so expensive it will only be able to be taken on by a big chain. £60,000 per year is a huge sum. I would love to see it taken on by an art gallery for the community - it's an ideal building - or possibly an upmarket bar that doesn't encourage drunks.

"There are people vomiting in the streets now, and some of the alleyways are not pleasant places to walk through after a Saturday night. The new Aldi site could have been used for something like rooftop gardens or an indoor market, but instead it's gone to a quick fix supermarket. That isn't looking to the future."

Learner driver Holly Ridge, who booked an intensive course with Drive Dynamics.

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