As a member of the Friends of the City of Leeds Society (FOCOLS) I would like to thank the Sheffield council for its continued help and support.
Over the years they have bent over backwards for the sake of Leeds.
I can still recall the time when the odd Leeds Council member was wanting to bring the Student Games to Leeds, with all the ongoing debt that it would incur, but thankfully in stepped Sheffield and took the games and debts with it, which meant we had money to keep modernising our city centre, while theirs went to rack and ruin.
Even now, with The home of Yorkshire Cricket, Headingley ( sorry Sheffield cricket fans) needing to raise a bit of cash by staging rock concerts, those Sheffield debts mean that the running track and pop venue, which would have made it difficult for Headingley, is now going to be wiped from the face of Sheffield for good, by those thoughtful council members.
The same sort of thing has happened with the airport, given away to stop any competition with ours.
Meadowhall area expansion has been cancelled to allow us to spend millions on an even bigger one in Leeds. They didn’t even put up much of an objection when we applied to build an arena to compete with theirs. This is heading towards completion and will probably finish with the one in Sheffield also being wiped from the face of city.
It was a bit of a shock to learn that a Sheffield theatre group had won first prize, but true to form our council friends immediately looked at stopping funding to give us a chance next year.
More recently, a fast- track rail link has been agreed from London to Leeds, with millions being given to Leeds to upgrade their station, but we were concerned that it stopped in Sheffield, before arriving in Leeds.
As usual we worried for nothing, as, due to the foresight of the Sheffield Council, any foreign visitor stepping off the train in Sheffield and looking around will think they’ve arrived in post-war Hungary or Poland when they see those monstrous buildings that we understand to be homes.
They have even listed them, so no-one else can remove them, so we expect the visitors to jump straight back on the train and onto Leeds.