Kirkstall Valley Development Trust is one of Leeds most ambitious community driven projects.
We set up a Trust, owned and run by its members, in 2016. Our aim is to develop a learning and leisure park over 200 hidden acres of inner Leeds and to refurbish two heritage mills that lie at its heart.
We are working with Leeds City Council, University of Leeds, Leeds Beckett University, the Centre for Alternative Technology and local community groups to create:
- A Centre for Sustainable Cities teaching practical and high level skills for sustainable living, focusing on water, energy, food and housing.
- Environmental education particularly aimed at young people
- Energy, growing and nature projects
- On site power sourced from the river and solar panels
- New parkland and wildlife areas
- Improved access, with cycle and walk ways
- Two refurbished heritage mills
- Workspace for sympathetic small businesses
- Flexible community space
- A public café / bar, events and exhibition space
The aspiration to create a new Kirkstall Valley Park and linked green spaces down the river Aire has been around for many years, fostered by the Kirkstall Valley Park Board, but to date the space south of the Kirkstall Bridge shopping Centre remains largely inaccessible and underused.
We want to protect that green space, but open it up for people to enjoy. At the same time, we want to bring the semi derelict Abbey Mills (LS5 3HP) into use as a community hub and for St Anns mill industrial site (LS5 3AE) to be an educational and visitor centre based on creating cities for the future (see separate tabs)
Fulfilling the vision of a Valley Park is probably a 20-year project, but refurbishment of the mills is the obvious place to start and we’re doing just that at Abbey Mills. By the end of 2018 we hope to have agreed a development plan with the City Council and approval for the transfer of part of the mill to the Trust. Meanwhile over 2018 and 2019 we will develop the business plan for Sustain at St Anns
Above – Kirkstall Valley Park site, reaching from Morrisons / St Anns Mill in the north west, following Kirkstall Rd to Redcote Lane and the retail park in the south east
Above – St Anns Mill