‘Time for a shift from London to Leeds’

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LABour leader Ed Miliband praised a Leeds company and its workforce yesterday for its speedy recovery from a devastating fire.

Mr Miliband was speaking at the temporary home of air conditioning specialist Airedale whose Rawdon premises were badly damaged last year.

Ed Miliband meets workers at Airedale

Ed Miliband meets workers at Airedale

The Labour leader told staff and management he had huge admiration for the way they had responded.

“You didn’t even let a fire burning down your premises get in the way of your international success,” he said.

Mr Miliband also described Leeds as a city of “huge dynamism, fantastic people and a great council”.

He was at Airedale’s plant to launch a new report by former Transport Secretary Lord Adonis on how Labour can narrow the economic gap between areas like West Yorkshire and the South East.

Its central recommendation is that billions of pounds currently spent by Government departments in London should instead by given to groups of councils working with business in places such as Leeds to spend on measures to help the local economy and create more skilled jobs.

Mr Miliband told the YEP: “In a world where there is less money around I think it is absolutely essential, it is essential anyway, but it is even more important in a world of less money because unless you give power to local people you are never going to be able to do more with less which is what we need to do.”

Leeds City Council leader Keith Wakefield welcomed the report.

He said: “The review clearly points in the right direction by emphasising the opportunities devolved spending could bring.”

Leeds, Sweet street, 28th March 1979'LIGHTING'Mr. Eddie Mullan, a lift engineer at the City of Leeds Public Works Department, Sweet Street, gives a last polish to one of the four old gas lamps that are to be sent to Germany.

Leeds nostalgia: Bits of old Leeds sent to Germany... in 1979