History told straight through the streets of Leeds

There’s always more to learn about the city you live in, whether it’s about the people, the history or discovering hidden landmarks you never knew existed. Viewers of city TV channel Made in Leeds can look forward to uncovering the rich history of their home town, with a brand new series of Streets of Leeds set to launch on Friday 17th November at 8pm.

Hosted by entrepreneur and local historian Jonathan Straight, the six-part series will take viewers on a road trip all over Leeds, exploring how the city has been a hub of innovation over the centuries.

Jonathan says: “Leeds has a wealth of history that many people, both here and beyond, still know very little about. I’ve always enjoyed visiting iconic Leeds locations in my regular features on Made in Leeds, so it’s a joy to be able to make a brand new series.”

Jonathan is joined by Made in Leeds presenter Mark O’Brien as they drive through the streets of Leeds, exploring a different part of the city’s history in each episode. Episode 1 looks at Leeds’ role as a true northern engineering powerhouse, home to the country’s busiest train station outside of London, and a hub for the nation’s motorways.

The series will go on to look at the city’s proud heritage as a centre for the textiles trade, a hub for science and technological innovation, and a cultural hotbed aiming to be European Capital of Culture in 2023.

Mark adds: “There are so many great stories about Leeds people and institutions that have helped change the world, and I can’t wait to get in the driving seat and share those stories. We’re the city that invented film, Cluedo, Jelly Tots, Sooty and Sweep – and much, much more! It’s going to be a thrill to visit the places we drive past on our way to work or to the shops, and find out what a fascinating story they have.”

The series is produced in partnership with Vantage Toyota Leeds, part of Vantage Motor Group, which has provided a range of Toyota vehicles specially chosen for the series.

Steve Rowbotham, Centre Principal at Vantage Toyota Leeds, said: “Leeds has a proud engineering history and Toyota is at the forefront of innovation in the automotive industry. This is why we’ve teamed up with Made in Leeds to provide a range of the latest models which are perfect for urban travel – we’re looking forward to seeing them in action throughout the Streets of Leeds series!”

The programme is based on a new book and exhibition called ‘Leeds: Cradle of Innovation’, curated by Rachael Unsworth, a lecturer at the University of Leeds’ School of Geography.

Made in Leeds broadcasts 24 hours a day on Freeview 7, Sky Guide 117, Virgin 159 and online at www.madeinleeds.tv/live