Introducing The Leeds Guardian

civic_hall_2Since January, a new website has been putting the focus on council accountability, transport and civic issues in Leeds.

The Leeds Guardian asks the questions:

What are the people of Leeds talking about today? What are the big civic issues affecting Leeds and its communities?

Whether it’s the latest decisions from Leeds Civic Hall about the future of Kirkgate Market and issues surrounding council cutbacks or public transport and the controversy surrounding the new Leeds Trolleybus scheme and HS2, the site aims to connect people with the decision making process and with civic life.

It also aims to help people become more powerful in the civic and democratic parts of their lives.

It’s an independent website – no links to the ‘big’ Guardian and certainly nowhere near their resources. The site is edited by me! I set it up as I felt there was a gap in the market editorially and I’ve always been passionate about council reporting. I’m one of a rare breed of journalists who actually relish sitting through a three-hour plans meeting at the Civic Hall!

TLG has its own Leeds Stories section, run in conjunction with the guys at n0tice, where you can contribute your information, stories, videos and photographs to this site and take part in assignments we set. It’s basically a junior version of Guardian Witness.

It also points readers to many of the MySociety democracy sites such as Fix My Street and Transport, They Work For You and What Do They Know? and draws posts from them.

TLG is there to connect people with democracy and local decision makers and empower them to make a change in their community/city.

It also has a little brother – Behind The Leeds Guardian, which is a blog looking at some of the editorial decision-making that goes on behind the scenes. It’s an attempt to make the news operation a bit more transparent – the blog behind the blog as it were.

It’s already documented a Twitter conversation about online polls with the chief exec of Leeds council Tom Riordan and led to the introduction of a polls policy on the main TLG site.

A recent BTLG post on stats shows you some of the figures behind the site. Reaction from readers has generally been very positive.

It’s early days yet – but there are already plans for a pilot print issue so watch this space.

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One comment

  1. Reblogged this on Behind The Leeds Guardian and commented:

    Here’s a post on TLG reblogged from the Leeds Bloggers site

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