Leeds nostalgia: In March 1991, the day the ‘Great Divide’ came down in Leeds

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The Berlin Wall came down in the 1980s, Communism collapsed in the 1990s and in Leeds a wall which had “divided the city” also met it’s match.

The Mayor of Leeds, Coun Les Carter, took a sledgehammer to the aforementioned wall, which stood beneath a railway arch between Assembly Street and The Calls and which had stood for over 50- years.

The YEP reported at the time: “For over 50 years, the wall has split the city centre in two. On one side was the old town and on the other side was the riverside.”

Coun Carter said: “This was the Great Divide in Leeds. This is an historical event.”

Leeds Development Corporation was set to create a pedestrian way from the Corn Exchange to the river, as part of a £169,000 scheme, which would also see Assembly Street re-paved and the walkway lead across the River Aire to link with Bowman Lane.

Peter Hartley, LDC chairman, said: “The railway forms an enormous physical and psychological barrier, cutting off the River Aire and all its development potential from the rest of the city.”

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