Tuesday, 12 April 2011

The Old York Road Library - the story so far

Copyright COVEN 2011

You will remember that previously and after much hard work and constant lobbying by the residents of the area and with the help of Cllr Richard Brett, Cllr Graham Hyde and Phil Ward (Team Leader - Conservation at the Sustainable Development Unit of Leeds City Council) an order was issued to the landlord requiring the fitting of a temporary roof to this Grade II listed building to prevent any further damage to the structure of the building.

COVEN have been keeping a very keen eye on the work being done on the library to see how well it was done and we have also been making sure that the building itself is secure as it has frequently been broken into in the past and is in fact the focus of much anti social and criminal behaviour.

Copyright COVEN 2011
Unfortunately as you can see from the picture above the building has recently been broken into again and it is again being used as a drug den.

This building is very close to All Saints Primary School and young children can be very adventurous we fear that one will climb in and be badly hurt. 

Copyright COVEN 2011

The original fireplace has been ripped out of the wall and was stacked by the door, presumably so it could be carted away and sold for scrap.

Soon there will be nothing left of the building's unique features, the tile work, the parquet flooring the beautiful glass partitions.

Copyright COVEN 2011
As you can see from the pictures here the work does not appear to have been done to the required standard expected and the building is in a very vulnerable state.

 Daylight can be seen quite clearly through the rafters and the sheeting is blowing in the wind.
Copyright COVEN 2011

Copyright COVEN 2011
In the picture above you can see that the drainage pipes are clearly not working as the water is running down the wall and here is a picture of the damage done to the rafters in order the throw the rare blue slates from the roof into the building instead of placing them carefully inside as stated in the work order.

COVEN know that Phil Ward at the Sustainable Development Department is on top of this project and is writing to the landlord about the state of the building and quality of the work undertaken and when there is any more news we will bring it to you.

In the meantime COVEN will keep on monitoring the Old York Road Library building and bringing you regular updates because we here in this area have so very few things that are worth saving but this building is certainly one of them.


  1. Having taken a peek two weeks ago when this happened i have to say this place is a DEATHTRAP. Will a child have to die before the owners secure the place properly?

    I understand there is the potential for the back being bricked up which seems very sensible. As for the roof - COVEN stated at the Inner East Area committee that if that plastic sheeting rips off and hits a car on York road there may be a serious accident.

    Come on Leeds council - you have powers you can use under these circumstance surely it is time to use them.

  2. A pathetic attempt by the council to silence a pressure group instead of taking the bull by the horns and enforcing the law as is their duty

  3. No the council is not trying to silence us. They are doing the best they can but without the good will of the landlord it is a difficult,expensive and time consuming job. I think both the ward councillors and the Phil Ward's department for conservation know by now that we are not about to go anywhere until this building is at least made safe for the present.

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