Bramley campaigner calls for Leeds to ‘leave motorway city behind’

paul Chatterton
Concerned: Paul Chatterton

An academic and campaigner from Bramley is calling on city chiefs to ‘leave motorway city behind’ during an online discussion.

Paul Chatterton, a professor at the University of Leeds and a co-founder of the Lilac co-housing project in Bramley, spoke at an online event hosted by Greenpeace Leeds.

The event, also attended by Leeds Central MP Hilary Benn, discussed improvements needed to local transport and the role that investing in zero carbon public transport, walking and cycling has to play in a Green Recovery from the pandemic.

Mr Chatterton said:

“There needs to be a shift to a safe and equal transport system in Leeds. This will require a new transport vision that is shared by everyone.

“To tackle social inequality, air pollution and rising carbon emissions, it has to be based on leaving the Leeds city motorway behind, to look for safer ways of getting around Leeds based on free public mass transit, cycling and walking.”

The event was attended by over 50 people. Topics discussed ranged from the new active travel zones planned for the city, to the development of greener transport, such as electric cars.

In the 1970s Leeds was known as the ‘motorway city of the north’, such was its pride in the M62 and M621.

A Greenpeace Leeds spokesperson said:

“We held this event to call on the UK Government to invest £10 billion more every year to transform public transport, walking and cycling and re-direct the £27 billion they’ve committed to new road building. Here in Leeds we need to look at transport as part of a wider strategy to tackle climate change. The climate issue seems to be eclipsed by Covid at the moment.

“The Government is expected to spend many billions on new infrastructure to boost the economy as a result of the Covid crisis, including £27 billion on roads. Transport is the UK’s largest source of greenhouse gas emissions, so building more roads only adds to this problem and will encourage more people to buy cars, and drive more miles.”

Hilary Benn also spoke about the future of carbon neutral accessible transport across the city.


  1. Halting new road building and investment in Green Technology seems the way to go. Not everyone will be able to afford exspensive hybrid and electric cars, so sustainable public transport like the London Tube is necessary for the Leeds City Region.

  2. We did this until jobs outsourced offshore, making people travel further afield looking for work. Sound lovely this guy promoting, but until we have local jobs that don’t need welfare to top up, it’s a pipe dream. Also the older/disabled can’t walk that far if at all and rely on their cars. Which is made more difficult by the high cost of parking


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