IT WAS interesting to read in the YEP about the supportive stance being taken by the Civic Trust towards the NGT scheme, especially given that one of its stated aims is to “stimulate interest in and care for the history and character of the city”.
The widening of the A660 and other proposed changes hardly reflect care, nor respect for the character of the six conservation areas affected by the trolley bus route.
However the YEP article missed out the most telling part of the Civic Trust press release. The director, Kevin Grady stated that “it is inevitable that the overhead wires and poles required by the trolleybus will have an unwelcome adverse visual impact”, adding that “we hope that in the longer term the trolleybus can be replaced by battery-powered vehicles and the poles and wires removed”.
It would seem that the Civic Trust seriously supports the council in spending millions on installing a spaghetti of wires and a forest of support gantries, so that Leeds can later on spend further millions more on removing it all!
Surely what the Civic Trust is actually saying is that the scheme is seriously flawed and that the use of trolleybuses is not appropriate and certainly not a long term proposition. Why doesn’t the Civic Trust have the nerve to lobby for an alternative transport medium such as battery-powered buses in the first place?
Few would disagree with seeking ways to improve the Leeds traffic situation but the fundamental point is that improving the transport infrastructure of Leeds is NOT dependent on using trolleybuses. In the case of NGT almost all the adverse effects on the character of Leeds come primarily from the insistence in using the trolley bus.
Doug Kemp, West Park Residents Association