New leaf for Crossgates station as facility gets the artistic treatment

Crossgates station has long been an architectural anomaly in east Leeds – the gigantic, featureless brick wall towering over commuters has long been an eyesore for many.

By Richard Beecham
Wednesday, 27th July 2022, 4:45 am
Updated Wednesday, 27th July 2022, 7:27 am

However, a local artist, along with help from a rail operator, has managed to get the place looking a bit more attractive, after a mural was fitted to the red brick of the station’s side.

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They were joined by Leeds city councillors and local schoolchildren to celebrate the new artwork aside the platform.

The new mural has been created by artist Emmeline North, who hails from Crossgates.

Artist Emmeline North worked with students from nearby John Smeaton Academy to create the eye-catching posters now displayed on the platform ramp.

She said: “I feel really proud to have been part of this and that we can be here celebrating this work.

“A big part of this was having the chance to work with some of the young people at John Smeaton Academy.

“They all showed such a broad set of approaches and skills, it was fantastic how they worked together, this was a truly collaborative effort.”

The mural was officially "opened" by Leeds city councillor Jess Lennox.

Other recent improvements to the station include repairing fencing on the platforms, refurbishing the booking office entrance and installing new CCTV.

A new edible planter has also been built on the York-bound platform, which will be looked after by students from Crossgates Primary School.

The scheme encourages communities to get involved in growing fresh produce and passengers will be able to take home food grown in the planter as they pass through the station.

Tony Baxter, regional director at Northern said: “I’d like to thank everyone who created this colourful artwork at our station.

“Our community partners are the heartbeat of the railway and we’re extremely proud to work closely with them to deliver such a wide-ranging positive impact for the North of England.”

“Projects such as this are part of a wider programme of improvements at many of our stations – including improved accessibility, car park refurbishments and improved CCTV – to encourage all our customers to ‘go do their thing’ and explore the north.”

Crossgates station is one of the oldest rail facilities in Leeds – having been in continuous use since 1850.