Anyway, went there today for the first time for about 9 months and was amazed at the amount of activity going on. New arena, shopping centres etc etc.
I've always had this theory about Leeds - it has never had the sheer amount of public money that places like Sheffield, Newcastle, Liverpool and Manchester have had (particularly by Labour). But it has always had a more mixed economy than these others i.e. with more commercial than 'old style' manufacturing. Consequently its population has risen steadily as opposed to falling off a cliff as it has in other northern centres over the last 3 decades and the private sector has probably been less crowded out than in these other places .
The other theory I have is that Leeds somehow benefits from the way the city boundaries have been drawn. Unlike places like Manchester, the city boundary encompasses large semi rural but prosperous areas from Otley to Wetherby along the Wharfe valley. So when the statistics are published, this tends to boost average earnings, average house prices etc. And when retailers etc. are poring over their spreadsheets to determine where to invest their capital, Leeds often gets thrown up as one of the first...like good ole' Harvey Nicks. I always remember the leader of Nottingham trying valiantly to finger Leeds as the 'gun crime capital of the country' rather than Nottingham, complaining of the fact that his city boundary was much tighter. Of course he couldn't change perception could he, too much to cut through .
Edited by !EURO!, 01 February 2012 - 09:41 PM.