In 2014, the West Yorkshire Fire Service commissioned a new fire station in Killingbeck and decommissioned their stations in Gipton and Stanks. Two locally-based community organsiations (GIPSIL and Zest Health for Life) approached Leeds Community Foundation (LCF) to see if it was possible to save the building for the community by converting it into a Community and Enterprise hub.
LCF managed a significant fund set up by the late Jimi Heselden, a local businessman who was born and brought up in East Leeds. Following discussions with Jimi's family, LCF was able to make a grant from Jimbo’s Fund to finance the purchase and renovation of the former fire staion. Jimi felt passionately about supporting his local community, so this is a very appropriate way of acknowledging his tremendous generosity.
Other third sector partners came on board as potential tenants, and contractors were appointed - Brewster Bye (architects), Aspect 4 (project managers) and Simpson Of York (construction company). The project began to take shape and the renovation was completed in August 2017. - but the building has been transformed into a bright modern hub of activity
Many of the original features have been retained - old pumps, the firemans poles some flooring and tiles - with the building being transformed into a bright modern hub of activity.
Find out more about the history of the building and the people who worked here at https://smartgallery.org.uk/ our online museum!
Our Project Vision and Aims
The Old Fire Station is:
To create a thriving, welcoming and self sustaining community hub in East Leeds
Our main aim is to ensure that The Old Fire Station is a thriving, welcoming centre in East Leeds where all are made to feel valued and safe whilst providing the opportiunity to learn, develop and engage in positive activities.
The image below shows some of our achievements in the first six months after we opened in August 2017:
If you would like to find out more about the groups involved in the project, please follow the links above, or contact the Reception Manager on 0113 213681 or firstname.lastname@example.org.