James Bovington highlights our Council ‘junketeers’’ failure to secure transport funding (YEP 20/21 Nov) but this is only the latest episode in a long-running saga. Restoration of our heritage architecture (The Mansion, White Cloth Hall, Kirkgate, Rail Station Concourse, Boar Lane, The Market) all suffered many years delay or postponment.
Renovation of our infrastructure (Bus Station, Airport) was either piece-meal or make-do-and-mend. Prestige sports and entertainment and conference business venues are non-existent.
Contrast this with the campaign to save the heart unit. A determind, well-run, passionate body of fighters, who have exposed the under-funding and bias of officialdom. We need a funding research and procurement post in the Council, with a Europe-wide brief to access subsidies.
Using the devious expedients of others, we would represent ourselves as north-and-south, inner and outer Leeds and include ourselves in and out of West Yorkshire to suit the immediate purpose of attracting funds for definitions of ‘deprived’ communities.
We should offer ourselves as hosts to any and every European venture (peace, transport, education, environment). This means advertising to Europe, not London or the ‘Third World’ from which nothing can be expected and learning from them.
Leeds has always been more a European, if only because less English, city. We should recognise it and capitalise upon it.
Next time London’s calling we’ll be abroad.
P Kilroy, Spennithorne Avenue, Leeds