New safety measures to be implemented at 'unsafe' Headingley Stadium alleyway
A ginnel by Headingley Stadium is to get CCTV coverage after women protested last year about feeling unsafe when walking down it.
Almost 10,000 people backed a petition calling on safety measures to be implemented and a Reclaim Headingley Stadium Alleyway demonstration was held in October.
The alleyway, which runs between St Michael's Lane and Kirkstall Lane, is used as a shortcut to avoid walking around the stadium, but many women in the popular student area have said they do not feel safe using it.
The petition claimed there had been "several cases" of sexual violence and assault in the area.
Some called for the alleyway to be closed altogether if it could not be made safe.
MPs and councillors expressed their concerns and now, Headingley and Hyde Park councillors Al Garthwaite, Neil Walshaw and Jonathan Pryor, have posted an update.
Foliage has been cut back to provide better lines of sight and funding for CCTV has now been sourced.
The trio said: "First of all much of the foliage and trees have been cut back so there is a clear sight line.
"This is allowing more natural light in, but also no longer obstructing the street lamps.
"Some of the top most foliage still remains in private gardens, and we are working on encouraging the residents to cut this back also.
"Additionally we have sourced funding for CCTV for the length of the alleyway.
"There was a technical problem with attaching this to a lamppost, which delayed this slightly, but it has been funded."
Graffiti will be removed and anti-graffiti paint will be added to the walls.
Next month, there are plans for a mural around the ginnel, funded by the Leeds Rhinos Foundation.
The update from the councillors was met positively on social media.
One person said: "This is great news, thanks for being pro-active on this. Although it is well overdue! Hope it continues to get regular maintenance for the long-term too."
Another added: "Thanks, and thank you for not closing. I used it all the time with the kids in the day as it's a traffic free way to get round, traffic being a more ever present danger.
"The next best way to make our streets safer is to walk, not drive and look out for each other."
The petition was created last year following social media rumours of assaults, but West Yorkshire Police said at the time they did not have any evidence for these.
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