'This is just the beginning': Leeds council leader pledge as city is named Britain's most vibrant

The leader of Leeds City Council has pledged to ensure that the city's growth is just the beginning after the city was named Britain's most vibrant.

By Alex Grant
Friday, 11th February 2022, 4:45 am

Coun James Lewis made the pledge following the release of data collected by Wireless Social.

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In a report looking at the sales data from the UK's 10 most popular cities in the month building to January 15, 2022, Leeds was ranked just 0.2 per cent down on the same period in 2019.

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In a report looking at the sales data from the UK's 10 most popular cities in the month building to January 15, 2022, Leeds was ranked just 0.2 per cent down on the same period in 2019.

They ranked ahead of cities like Glasgow and Bristol while London saw a 19 per cent drop.

Coun James Lewis, leader of Leeds City Council, said: “It’s hugely encouraging to hear so much positive news about the city’s economic recovery at the moment and it’s an outstanding endorsement of the strength and resilience of our business community and Leeds as a whole.

“After a uniquely challenging couple of years, there’s a renewed sense of collective purpose and ambition across Leeds to work together and not only help the city bounce back, but see us maximise our massive potential for growth and innovation.

“As this news demonstrates, we’re already making some massive strides in the right direction and we’re confident that this is just the beginning.”

Meanwhile a survey conducted by Deloitte Regional found Leeds and Birmingham observed the largest uplift in total construction activity, boosted by residential and office schemes.

Leeds saw a record level of construction in 2021 with 10 new residential developments starting work, which will deliver 2,267 new homes.

This represents an increase of 210 per cent when compared with the 732 new residential units that started construction in 2020. There were 18 residential schemes under construction in 2021 in total.

Leeds' place atop the most vibrant cities list was confirmed by a positive Christmas period for retailers as confirmed by David Maddison, Centre Director at Trinity Leeds.

“Retail is certainly back with a bang and consumer confidence continues to climb. We had a fantastic Christmas and people have been keen to get back to in-person experiences such as shopping and cinema trips or enjoying meals and drinks with friends, and this shift back to normality has helped kickstart 2022." he said.

"We expect to see this upward trajectory continue as more and more people return to city centres.”

In further progression, the survey conducted by Deloitte Regional recorded a surge in the construction of student accommodation, with six new starts and 2,226 bed spaces currently under construction.

Elsewhere in 2021, a record 465,958 square feet of floorspace for Leeds' education sector was completed. Beating the previous record completion of 419,758 square feet in 2019.

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