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Your Leeds local election 2018 A to Z: Chapel Allerton

Participants in Leeds West Indian Carnival 28th August 2017. Picture: Beau Roddis
Participants in Leeds West Indian Carnival 28th August 2017. Picture: Beau Roddis
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THE CANDIDATES

Black, Kevin Irving - Conservative Party

Davies, Mike - Alliance for Green Socialism

Dowson, Jane Alice - Labour Party

Feldman, Linda Marilyn - Conservative Party

Harris, Susan Alison - Liberal Democrats

Merton-Scott, Justine - Green Party

Myers, David Bernard - Conservative Party

Rafique, Mohammed - Labour Party

Taylor, Eileen - Labour Party

Walker, Bobak - Green Party

Chapel Allerton - key issues and numbers

Good housing and clean streets.

Those are the two things that immediately come to Arthur France’s mind when asked what the key voting issues for people in the Chapel Allerton ward of Leeds are.

Mr France is founder of the world-famous Leeds West Indian Carnival, which brings the streets of Chapeltown alive every August Bank Holiday and has been doing so for half a century.

But when the parade has stopped and the costumes have been put away, life for ordinary residents in this inner city area of Leeds can be as tough as it gets.

High crime levels often dominate the headlines, but for Mr France, it’s the basics like housing and education - and national funding cuts - that shape futures.

He wants the authorities to pay more attention, both financially and practically, to the ward.

He is especially keen to see real investment in youth services, and a drive to diversify teaching staff at local schools to reach out to the area’s black youngsters especially.

On the other side of the ward - and, for many, a different world entirely - is Chapel Allerton.

With its proliferation of trendy bars and restaurants, and a burgeoning young professional population, it has - over the last decade - become the essence of gentrification.

One report written on the rise and rise of Chapel Allerton - recently named one of the UK’s best places to live - noted that for people in lower income brackets, “both positive and negative consequences of gentrification” could be seen.

In recent months, community sports facilities have also been a talking point in the ward, with a brand new non-turf cricket pitch being welcomed.

Bus links have long been a bugbear, with a perception that services from the area to other parts of the city are not good enough.

One campaigner told the YEP previously: “If you are in Chapeltown and you want to go to Headingley, it’s only a mile and a half, but you have to go into the city centre and back out. Or you want go to St James’s hospital from Chapeltown, and you have to get two buses.”