Have your say on Middleton Park golf course land

As mentioned in this month’s Councillors’ Briefing, a consultation has begun on how to use the land that was formally South Leeds Golf Club and has now been incorporated into Middleton Park.

Discussions have been going on between ward Councillors in Middleton Park and Beeston & Holbeck wards; the Friends of Middleton Park, Cycle Pathways CIC who run the Leeds Urban Bike Park and the Leeds Hospital Charity about a range of uses for the land. From those discussions a draft plan has been drawn up which is now being consulted on.

The plans fall into three main areas:

Plans for the Covid Memorial Woodland would use an area of 4.4 hectares (about one tenth of the SLGC land) close to the Park Woods estate. The woodland area will have a refurbished circular path as well as more informal mown pathways. As well as tree planting the area could include a sculpture and ponds in a wetland area.

The land will be leased to the charity from the council. Leeds Hospitals Charity will pay for the works through fundraising and gifts in kind from surrounding organisations. Leeds City Council will be supporting the scheme through the consultation period, and overseeing the development of the site, tree planting and ongoing maintenance.

Cycle Pathways CIC are taking over the former clubhouse and have plans for it to be at the centre of an education and activity zone. The zone would be a similar size to the Covid Memorial Woodland and lie between Gipsy Lane and the Ring Road above The Links estate. The zone would offer activities such as climbing, cycling, ropeways, Forest school for under 5s, nature trails and natural play areas, it aims to:

“To give young people from South Leeds and their families challenges and the ability to gain confidence through learning new skills, not normally readily available in the area.”

The remaining land would see refurbished paths, new tree planting and rewilding schemes. Five small, 15-20 space car parks will be built, subject to planning permission, off the Ring Road to accommodate visitors.

To support the public consultation, three drop-in events will be held in south Leeds, starting from this Saturday at the following venues:

Saturday 7 August – 11am – 3pm – Middleton Park Visitor Centre.

Saturday 14 August – 11am – 3pm – Leeds Urban Bike Park.

Monday 16 August – 4pm – 6.30pm – Leeds Urban Bike Park and lower South Leeds Golf Course site.

Representatives of Leeds City Council, Leeds Urban Bike Park and The Friends of Middleton Park will be available to hear your views and answer questions. Anyone unable to attend can also make their views known via an online survey at: surveys.leeds.gov.uk/s/SLGC21/. The online survey is open until Friday 10 September 2021.

You can view three large scale plans showing the proposals on these links:

Overall plan

Education and Activity Zone

Covid Memorial Woodland

Councillor Salma Arif, Leeds City Council’s executive member for public health and active lifestyles said:

“We’ve worked hard to ensure that the initial proposals we’ve put forward for the former South Leeds Golf Course site offer something that is positive and meaningful to visitors in an environment that will also offer a range of green benefits. Also included and a major part of the project is the proposal for a new memorial woodland where loved ones can gather, reflect and remember those who have sadly died due to Covid-19.

“We really want to hear what the people of Leeds think, which is why we have arranged a number of drop-in events from this weekend. The thoughts of residents are extremely important to us and anyone contributing can be assured every comment will be considered carefully before any final decisions are made.”

Middleton Park Ward Councillors Kim Groves, Sharon Burke and Paul Truswell said:

“We urge everyone to get involved in shaping the area for this and future generations by attending one of the drop-in events or completing the online survey. It is important that local people put forward their ideas for future uses of this extended area of the park.

“We would also welcome their views on proposals that have already been suggested by the Leeds Urban Bike Park and the Friends of Middleton Park. The drop-ins and online survey will have visual materials showing the site and the possibilities.

“We are also keen to hear local people’s views on the proposal from the Leeds Hospital Charity for a fitting memorial to those people who sadly lost their lives during the pandemic, and to the heroic ongoing effort of frontline workers.”

16 Replies to “Have your say on Middleton Park golf course land”

  1. Every year Squirrels bury Horse Chestnuts [conkers] on my garden so every spring i find loads of Horse Chestnut saplings. Try as i may i cannot find anyone connected to the Parks Dept who will take and re.plant these trees. I have relocated 6 this year and have more in the garden . If required i will dig them up and deliver them to who ? HELP. I do not want to put healthy trees in the brown bin.

    1. My house backs onto the school. I know for a fact, at most there are 2 or 3 classes out on the fields at any one time. There is no need for expansion. Object all you like, the council will not listen.

      The Urban Bike Park have already moved into the golf House. Yet they say it’s just a proposal. A proposal thats already happened?

      1. Hi Andy
        We (LUBP) have secured the lease on the building and saved it from demolition, we now have the task of finding funding to fully restore the facility.
        The lease is just for the buildings and not the land, our proposal is to create an outdoor activity centre for local kids and families to enjoy.
        Happy to answer questions on the consultation day !
        Jeremy Hayes
        Cycle Pathway CIC

        1. Thanks I get that and I think that proposals are done in good faith. I also feel the contained areas, climbing etc. Could work well.

          I’ll be there in person, but I fear that because you’re into cycling , and your peers are excited by terms like cycle paths, local kids and families, etc. The fact that I, and other residents are opposed to the idea of more cycles speeding around will fall on deaf ears.
          You know full well, the majority of bike paths aren’t used by local people, as demonstrated by the number of cars in the car park. Indeed there are plans for more car park spaces?

          Anyway I’ll see you there to put these points across in vain, as after all you’re into cycling.

          See you there.

  2. Whilst it mentions a lot of tree planting and returning the area to the wild it sadly neglects to mention the destruction of mature trees and landscaping on the site to make way for an artifical pitch for the school next to the old golf course.

  3. In regards to the rest of the land SLGC (not shown on the picture above) will this be incorporated into the proposed plans or something entirely different?

    1. Hi Luke, if you click on the link labelled ‘Overall Plan’ you’ll see that all the former SLGC land is to be used as greenspace. The land is marked by a red border.

    2. Council are available for consultations for this yet when it came to throstle road recreation no consultations because of covid no meeting of residents due to covid no written objections due to covid, 8 on the planning board only 1 of the members lives in south leeds and he objected how can people who live in adel, whinmoor, chapel allerton know whats best for middleton the field should have been redeveloped for the residents who live in this area and not become another dumping ground for everything councillors wouldnt want on their doorstep. The first 6 weeks of this build was suppose to be the carpark and compound the whole field is dug up ready to build yet no one informs us of whats going on and council wont or dont reply to emails and are invisible up here, but never mind as long as the local councillor gets an extension to her back garden ie miggy park thats all that counts

  4. Do we really need any more cycle paths? Middleton woods has already been spoiled by the runs and jumps! Not to mention the increase in litter around those areas
    Another point is why does Cockburn require more land. As a local resident I feel the school and facilities are big enough

    1. I said the same thing further up. It needs people like us to turn up and voice opinions.

      Hope there is a decent turnout, as I feel the decision makers don’t live here, and aren’t particularly bothered as long as they can be pictured cutting a red ribbon.

      1. I quite agree but, where was everybody I went to South Leeds site 4.00pm 16th August, no sign of anyone, what did I get wrong ? Margot.

  5. Any proposals that improve the lives of our children are more that welcome. Especially from activities around nature and the environment. Im very proud that our fantastic green-space has attracted so much interest and support from so called “outsiders”. But countryside is for everyone to share and enjoy. I have spoken to lots of neighbours in the who feel the same way. Proud that our patch of green is getting the attention it deserves after all the neglected of of 10 years ago. Special thanks to Friends of Middleton Park I don’t know any of you personally but you do a grand job

  6. And where did it give these details of being ‘on the site of the Covid Memorial Wood behind the Park Woods Estate’ , which isn’t even there yet, how many people were aware of this and how many turned up to the consultation event. I think this was done deliberately. Margot.

  7. As a local resident, I feel that the cycle facilities should not be extended any further. The majority of ‘urban cycle park’ users are from beyond the locale, indeed from as ‘local’ as South Yorkshire.
    I have yet to see any surveys conducted on the impact of any traffic on the area. With an extra 100 car park spaces, even for a visit of only 2hours would result in nearly an added 600 SUV style cars, if the facilities were open 8am for 12hours.
    Car traffic aside, since the opening of the bike park there has been an inordinate amount of adults cycling on narrow pedestrian footpaths. Indeed, it is almost like stepping onto the main road when exiting your garden.
    If this project is such a fantastic resource for local people, I am positive that it would have been sited in the North, mire leafy and affluent area of Leeds.
    Such brilliant consultation opportunities…not! The laughable site of the consultation at the proposed covid memorial hardens to something akin to month python.!

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