British Library Board (Power to Borrow) Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:13 pm on 13th March 2020.

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Photo of Kevin Hollinrake Kevin Hollinrake Conservative, Thirsk and Malton 1:13 pm, 13th March 2020

I absolutely take my hon. Friend’s word for that.

My main reason for speaking was to talk about the opportunity for British Library North, the wonderful potential move into the city centre of Leeds. We already have the outpost in Boston Spa, as others have mentioned —the archive—which is probably closer to my constituency than that of Tracy Brabin, but is actually in the constituency of my right hon. Friend Alec Shelbrooke. The archive contains a record of every single newspaper ever published in the UK. It is not open to the public day to day, however, so to have a proper facility in the centre of Leeds is an exciting development.

Temple Works, as my hon. Friend Neil O'Brien said, contains what was at one point the largest room in the world, a 2 acre room. It is a wonderful part of Leeds, in the South Bank, close to the new High Speed 2 station. Any such contributions and facilities, connecting the north with the midlands and the south, mean more important facilities and jobs moving to our region.

As the hon. Member for Batley and Spen said, this is all part of the West Yorkshire devolution deal. We want to see devolution right across Yorkshire—Leeds and Bradford, great, but also York and North Yorkshire—and such opportunities are the kind to be created with the devolution deals. I welcome the Bill and the Government’s agenda to level up through the distribution of jobs and facilities throughout the UK.