Network Rail pressed to invest in Leeds Station

BUSINESS leaders from Leeds have met Network Rail to press the case for improvements to the city’s railway station.

Leeds, York and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce presented Network Rail’s head of northern estates with results of its survey that showed 63% of businesses do not believe the station acts as a good gateway into Leeds.

Ian Williams, director of policy at the Chamber, was joined at the meeting by Nigel McLea from Pinsent Masons, Gerald Jennings from Land Securities and Cath Follin from Leeds City Council.

Mr Williams said: “Leeds is the UK second largest financial services hub outside of London and a leading business destination, with huge investment taking place in the Arena, Trinity and Eastgate Quarter. However, the train station doesn’t reflect these developments and its appearance and facilities are dated in comparison to the rest of the city centre.

“First impressions matter and train stations are often the first thing that many visitors and potential investors come into contact with when visiting a particular city. If Leeds is to retain its position as a leading business destination, it is clear that the city centre train station needs to represent the standard of businesses that it serves.

“With confirmed investment taking place building a new Southern Entrance into the station, it is important that the rest of the station is also improved to ensure a standard consistency and impression throughout and the Chamber will work with and support Network Rail to ensure that our city has the train station that it deserves.”

Other findings from the survey include more than two thirds of respondents describing the appearance of the station as either average, poor or very poor.