Bright new interactive attraction lands at Leeds square

A giant light installation inspired by the North Star has arrived in Leeds.
A giant light installation inspired by the North Star has arrived in Leeds.
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A BRIGHT new attraction is lighting up Leeds city centre.

The interactive ‘Star’ installation at Millennium Square is in the city for two days only, and glows brighter based on people’s responses via social media.

The artwork, made of steel and neon tubing, has been created by Leeds-born designer Julia Bickerstaff.

The former Leeds College of Art student said: “With over 30 years’ experience working with light, the chance for an installation on my doorstep was an opportunity I couldn’t miss.

“The Star is designed to reflect that this is a region that’s going places and that people, places and ideas make it happen.”

The artwork is in Leeds until tomorrow and marks the start of new plans from train operator TranPennine Express (TPE).

Julia is working alongside TPE as part of its ‘Where Next? Project’ – a mentoring programme launching in May that aims to showcase talent from the route that TPE serves.

Leo Goodwin, managing director at TPE, said: “We are thrilled to be appointed the new intercity train operator for the north and Scotland and wanted to mark the occasion with an inspiring celebration.

“The installation is designed to reflect our aim to become a real ‘North Star’ for the towns and cities we serve, helping connect people, places and ideas for an even brighter future.”

He added: “Julia is a great example of the amazing talent across the route we serve and we’re delighted to be working with her.”

Over the next seven years, TPE plans to deliver more than £500m of investment to transform rail services across the north of England and Scotland. The investment could lead to an 80 per cent rise in capacity at the busiest times of the day and increase connections between large cities by 55 per cent.