Leeds '˜the country's fastest growing city'

Leeds is the fastest growing city in the country but also home to some of highest levels of inequality in the region, new figures show.

Leeds city centre skyline with Bridgewater Place, The Town Hall, Leeds University etc.

Accountancy giant Grant Thornton’s Vibrant Economy Index, which measures how towns and cities in England compare on a range of factors from prosperity to happiness, reveals that the Leeds City Region demonstrates strong levels of economic prosperity, dynamism and opportunity.

The data shows Leeds is producing wealth and jobs, as well as developing an entrepreneurial and innovative culture to help to drive future growth.

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However, the index also reveals that Leeds scores below the national average in the inclusion and equality indicator, and that the city has high levels of young people not in education, employment or training (NEETS).

To try and redress the balance, a long-lasting action plan for the future will be put into motion later this month.

More than 300 leading figures from across the city, along with the wider region’s private, public and third sectors have signed up to the Live Lab event as it is being called will be attended by senior representatives from a host of organisations, including Leeds City Council, Sky Betting and Gaming, Jaywing, Marks & Spencer, Leeds Beckett University, Jet2 and the Leeds Community Foundation to name just a few.

Andy Wood, Practice Leader at Grant Thornton Yorkshire, which is leading the event, said: “We will meet with the aim of answering the question: How can we make Leeds a home where all sectors connect to create inclusive growth?

“Leeds is a dynamic and exciting place and one which is undergoing a period of rapid transformation. We’re home to a diverse range of organisations from the private, public and third sectors which all offer significant growth opportunities, however, our research has uncovered a vital need to find a way to ensure that everyone living and working here benefits from this success.”