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COMPLAINTS: Group set up to resolve Leeds Fest traffic problems

COMPLAINTS: Group set up to resolve Leeds Fest traffic problems

Councillors in north Leeds say they are getting more complaints than ever before from local people disgruntled by traffic problems caused by the Leeds Festival.

Local councillors say the problem has now got so bad, they have set up a new working group to address residents’ concerns around the annual music event.

This year’s event, which took place at Bramham Park near Wetherby, featured pop superstars such as Post Malone, Stormzy and Liam Gallagher, who were watched by tens of thousands of fans.

But councillors say locals were upset at nearby road closures in Aberford, and claim the local communities have been “ignored”.

Coun Matthew Robinson (Con), who is set to co-chair the group, said: “We want to work with Festival Republic and Leeds City Council to improve matters for residents. The festival is welcomed by many people who enjoy that weekend but for others it causes difficulties. We want to understand what’s working well and where there are problems we need to get to the bottom of that to ensure things run smoothly on and off site.

“I received more emails and messages than ever before about problems, but also a number of people who enjoy the festival and live music. Some of the problems this year I think can be solved quickly, others are going to need more engagement and thinking.”

Coun Norma Harrington (Con) added: “We want to ensure residents’ concerns are heard and allow adequate time to plan and make changes for 2022. As a councillor I want to ensure events in our area run smoothly and the best way to do that is early engagement with residents, better communication and clarity in the decisions for the public”.

A statement released on behalf of the councillors stated that parish councils in the Harewood and Wetherby wards will be asked to “nominate representatives” to discuss these issues and speak with the festival organisers and Leeds City Council.

 

Words: Richard Beecham, Local Democracy Reporter


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