'I'm fiercely proud and protective of Leeds' - YEP Editor Joseph Keith

Growing up in Leeds, the Yorkshire Evening Post was everywhere.

By Joseph Keith
Monday, 11th July 2022, 11:30 am

It was emblazoned on signs on shop fronts and newsstands.

It was the newspaper where I searched for my name when results supplements were published after exams.

And as I got older, it was the website where I was drawn to for news about Leeds.

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The city of Leeds and, right, new YEP Editor Joseph Keith.

So it is an enormous pleasure for me to take over now as the new editor of the YEP.

From the first time I was asked as a child, I answered that I wanted to be a journalist when I grew up. Such was my fascination that I even visited the YEP's offices in primary school and had a go at writing a story.

I was born here in Leeds and have lived in the city almost all of my life.

And, like many Loiners who hail from this great city, I am fiercely proud that it is part of me.

I'm fiercely protective of it too, so the 'Championing Leeds' slogan in our masthead holds real meaning for me.

I started my journalism career in Wakefield and spent my junior years at weekly newspapers covering the majority of West Yorkshire from Castleford to Halifax, Dewsbury to Ossett, Batley to Heckmondwike - and everywhere in between.

There is an irony but also something beautiful about how I had to leave Leeds before I could return and report on and for the city.

After knocking on the door hard enough, I began plying my trade at the YEP and have never looked back.

I've covered everything from papers revealing plans to build new hospitals and gold medal triumphs at the Olympics, to blizzards stranding cars in the snow on the streets of Leeds.

I've even travelled on the fans' bus and watched Leeds Rhinos clinch a history-making treble in the Super League Grand Final at Old Trafford.

I’ve served in almost every job at the title - reporter, news editor and, latterly, deputy editor - and it has been my absolute privilege to do so.

Leeds United is also in my blood. My uncle was on the terraces in Paris on the fateful day in 1975, when the Whites were denied European glory.

While arguably the club's most illustrious years were before my time, like many supporters I’m excited and optimistic as we look ahead to the new era brought about by our long-awaited return to the Premier League.

Just like so many of our loyal readers, I'll back Leeds to win all the way - whatever the odds.

That desire to win, passion, pride and sense of belonging is what makes the club and the city of Leeds so great.

Everyone connected to them feels some form of ownership, myself included.

I've cheered on the mighty Whites standing in the Kop at Elland Road and roared on the Rhinos at Headingley Stadium. I know how much they mean to Leeds, and how much the fans mean to them.

As a reporter at the YEP, I campaigned vehemently to draw attention to topics including the incredible work of our health service which, after the outbreak of Covid-19, has been valued more than ever.

Through stories, I’ve also helped fight for the funding needed to bring our transport network in line with other metropolitan cities - and to get Leeds the recognition it deserves as a proud cultural hotspot as part of the Leeds 2023 vision, to name just a few issues.

As editor, I will do my very best to continue that work, champion our great city and campaign on its behalf to showcase why it is such a brilliant place to live, work and visit.

If you have any thoughts, or there is a topic you would like to see us cover in the future, please email me at: [email protected]