Work underway on a £1.8million project to create new retail space

Cedric Boston, Managing Director of Unity Home and Enterprise (left), and Adrian Green, Director of Unity Enterprise

Work has started on a £1.8million redevelopment project to create space for budding entrepreneurs in Leeds.

The Leeds Media Center modernization project in Chapeltown is a joint venture between Unity Enterprise – a non-profit subsidiary of local housing association Unity Homes and Enterprise – and Leeds City Council.

The center is owned by Leeds City Council and operated by Unity Enterprise under a long-term lease.

The renovation works, partly financed by the European Regional Development Fund, are due to be completed in June 2023.

The project aims to increase media center capacity, reallocating unused space for up to 12 new business units, as well as a bespoke hub with high-tech virtual facilities and meeting spaces.

Cedric Boston, Managing Director of Unity Homes and Enterprise, said, “We want to create new entrepreneurs and promote entrepreneurial activity, particularly around the media and creative industries.

“This project creates an opportunity for disadvantaged people of all ethnic backgrounds to start their own businesses.

“They will receive all the help they need to improve their own skills and abilities and chart a bright new future for themselves and their families.

“This includes professional advice on nurturing their ideas, creating a business plan, and securing the funds needed to establish a viable business.”

The European Regional Development Fund contribution to the project also includes funding for a full-time business adviser to provide a wide range of activities to support start-ups, particularly those working in the creative sector, digital and media.

Additionally, Unity Enterprise aims to encourage community-based BME entrepreneurs to access project support.