TODAY is my first day as the Editor of your Yorkshire Evening Post.
Being appointed editor of such an important, loved and established title is a huge honour and a huge responsibility.
I have bags of ideas as to how to improve your newspaper, but the ideas that really matter belong to you, and I need to hear them. You can help me to shape the future of this historic newspaper.
Being a Yorkshire woman, born and bred, and having cut my teeth as a journalist working across West Yorkshire, I have met thousands of people living and working in and around this great city, and I know that together we will make a formidable force for Leeds.
There isn’t a more dynamic city in The North of England that can match Leeds’ ambition and aspirations to be a genuine player nationally and internationally. Leeds is the UK’s fastest growing city with a city region economy worth £62.5 billion. We’ve a lot to shout about.
There are some beautiful places in and around Leeds. It has a lot to offer for people who want to work, rest and play here. It has its trendy areas, family-friendly places, modern urban living and rural getaways. And don’t say it too loudly, but if Garry Monk continues to work his magic down at Elland Road, Whites fans might just dare to dream about a long-overdue return to the promised land of the Premier League.
However, I’ve been in and around this city long enough to understand that it also has its challenges and I want you to be assured that I am committed to holding those in authority to account without an ounce of fear nor favour.
I am familiar with some of the complex issues that really get under your skin: like getting around the city on a bicycle without fearing for your safety or being able to easily get from the theatre to the restaurant or the bar. Or something as simple as being able to grab a reliable bus or train service that gets you to work on time, every single day. Let’s be honest, there’s work to do.
I’m also aware of the anger that some residents feel when it comes to certain big-ticket projects that have cost us millions of pounds without getting anywhere near to ground being broken, and I am keen to hear your view on these.
But as city leaders move closer to a devolution deal, it has never been more important for us to unite and steer plans for the future, and I will ensure the YEP listens to you and makes your voice heard.
So, do your YEP journalists concentrate on the details of an integrated and improved transport system? The city’s affordable homes crisis? Reducing poverty? Homelessness? Health issues? Investment, jobs, crime, pollution, the Northern Powerhouse, HS2, perhaps. This is your opportunity to decide.
The YEP is YOUR newspaper, whatever your involvement with the city and surrounding areas. I am merely the custodian of this title for a while - one of many in its long history - and I will rely on you, the readers of our reports in print and online, to tell me what you want to read about, what we should campaign for, and how we can best use our skills to ask the right things of the right people, to get the answers to your questions.
But it’s not just the big campaigning issues that I want to hear from you about. I want to know what you think of the YEP as a whole. Which sections and pull-outs do you like? What are we not covering that you’d like us to? What features and information would be useful to you?
One of the sections I’ve already brought to the paper is our Retro supplement - an eight-page supplement looking back on local and national events from the 1980s. I think it’s fun and entertaining - and brings back quite a few memories - but what do you think?
To get in touch please email me at email@example.com.
I look forward to hearing from you.