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European Elections 2014

Published on April 7, 2014 by in blog, slider

In the UK elections to the European Parliament are on 22nd May 2014

European elections are held every five years. The next elections will take place 22-25 May 2014. In the UK they are on Thursday 22nd May.

Each member state has a fixed number of Members of the European Parliament (MEPs).  For the UK there are 73 MEPs.



European Parliament

The European Parliament represents people living in the 28 member countries of the European Union (EU). It has powers in a range of areas that affect member countries:

  • animal rights
  • consumer rights
  • the environment
  • international trade
  • regional economic development
  • workers’ rights

It has the power to approve, amend or reject new European laws. It also approves the EU budget and new members of the European Commission.

- See more at: http://www.aboutmyvote.co.uk/what_can_i_vote_for/european_parliament.aspx

Every five years EU citizens choose who represents them in the European Parliament, the directly-elected institution that defends their interests in the EU decision-making process.

Each member state has the right to elect a fixed number of Members of the European Parliament (MEPs). The allocation of seats is laid down in the European treaties on the basis of the principle of degressive proportionality: countries with a larger population have more seats than smaller countries, but the latter have more seats than strict proportionality would imply. For the 2014 election, according to the Lisbon Treaty, the number of MEPs ranges from six for Malta, Luxembourg, Cyprus and Estonia to 96 for Germany.

Voting practices vary across the EU, although there are some common elements, the most important of which is that some form of proportional representation should be used. This gives larger and smaller political parties the chance to send their representatives to the European Parliament in line with the number of votes they receive. However, each country is free to decide on many important aspects of the voting procedure. For example, some split their territory into regional electoral districts, while others have a single electoral district. Countries may also decide on the exact day of the elections according to their voting traditions. European elections usually span four days, with voting in the UK and the Netherlands taking place on Thursday and residents of most other countries casting their vote on Sunday.

Elections are contested by national political parties but once MEPs are elected, most opt to become part of transnational political groups. Most national parties are affiliated to a European-wide political family so one of the big questions on election night is which of these European groupings will exert greater influence on the decisions taken in the next legislative term. The European Council must take the election results into account when choosing a nominee for the post of President of the European Commission, the executive arm of the EU.

With the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty, the European Parliament has become a powerful co-legislator and plays a determining role in shaping European policies. A vote in the European elections is every citizen’s chance to influence the shape of the Parliament and the decisions it takes over its five year mandate.

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Love Shakespeare? Celebrate #shakespeare450 with Leeds Libraries on 23rd and 26th April

Published on April 14, 2014 by in blog, slider

Leeds Central Library brings you an evening celebration of Shakespeare

Wednesday April 23 from 5pm

 Sonnets Around the Library. Audience participation required!

Romeo and Juliet: The balcony scene…

The Alan Cuckston Singers: ‘The Triumphes of Oriana’ a collection of madrigals in honour of Queen Elizabeth I

Hamlet: The ‘Alas, poor Yorick…’ Soliloquy

Talk: ‘The Supernatural in the Age of Shakespeare: witches, monsters & ghosts’

Shakespeare’s 450th Birthday Party, Family Picnic!

Saturday April 26 1-3pm

Crafts and midsummer activities for children

All events are free. No booking required

For more information call 0113 247 6016

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Did you know? 10 EU rights at a glance

Published on April 11, 2014 by in blog, slider

A new publication is available : Did you know? 10 EU rights at a glance
Being a European citizen means you benefit from all the big things: a continent at peace, the world’s biggest economy, the freedom to move – things we often take for granted. But it also means all the small, everyday things that make a real and daily difference. Like being able to send back a faulty good you ordered online, low roaming costs or compensation for cancelled flights – all of that is Europe working for you.

1. European and local elections
2. Making your voice heard
3. Free Movement
4. Health
5. Consumer Rights
6. Travel
7. Telecoms
8. Cross-border divorces and seperations
9. Crime victim’s rights and a fair trial
10. Information and Guidance

Download the Booklet or we have paper copies in the Europe Direct Centre , 2nd floor, Central Library, Leeds.

More on Your EU rights:

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The Language Exchange

Published on April 5, 2014 by in blog, slider

Missed the language exchange drop-in? Don’t despair pop into Europe Direct Leeds in the Information & Research Library in the Central library and you can sign up to find a language partner.

Europe Direct Leeds runs an adult language exchange which aims to help adult language learners to practice their new language skills.  This can be between two native speakers or as part of a group that brings together native speakers and learners. You find each other through our language exchange folder and we can even book a table for you!

To be part of the Language Exchange at Leeds Central Library, you will have to register with Europe Direct who are based in the Information and research library on the second floor. For more details, see the documents below (how it works can be found in the terms & conditions), or contact us at europedirect@leeds.gov.uk.

Contact Form

Terms & Conditions

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Language Exchange Drop in 2nd April

Published on March 24, 2014 by in blog

Language Exchange Drop in

Wednesday 2 April

4.30 – 7.00pm

Central Library, 3rd Floor Meeting Room

Do you want to practice your language skills and be more fluent in conversation? Do you have language skills you can share with others?

Drop in to register, get more information or potentially to meet prospective language partners

For further details email europedirect@leeds.gov.uk


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Europe Direct Leeds in the new look Business & IP Centre

Published on February 28, 2014 by in blog, slider

The centre is now open and looks great.We will be having an official opening in March. Look out for more news soon. In the mean time visit us on the 2nd floor of the central library, Leeds.
Business and IP Centre Leeds in a newly refurbished area in the Central library along with the Europe Direct Information Centre and the Information and Research Library – more photos here: http://fb.me/1jixPkpTi Eugene & Priscilla get to try out the new furniture, photos here: http://ow.ly/u6lYj


The Business & IP Centre, Leeds is part of the Business & IP Centre network, supporting small businesses and entrepreneurs by providing access to a comprehensive collection of business information, intellectual property support, workshops, 1 to 1 advice and mentoring opportunities. A collaboration between the British Library and six Core City Libraries in England (Birmingham, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, and Sheffield), the Business & IP Centre network aims to open up business resources to communities throughout the country, and is supported by the Intellectual Property Office, DCLG and Arts Council through direct funding and via the Enterprising Libraries project.
Enterprising Libraries will draw on the Business & IP Centre, Leeds’s role as a community hub to spark local economic growth and improve social mobility in local communities across the Yorkshire and Humber region, embedding the library as a trusted centre of business support and creating entrepreneurial opportunities for people of all backgrounds.

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We provide a comprehensive one-stop information service to support all your business and intellectual property (IP) needs. Whether you’re an existing business, a business start-up, an entrepreneur, an inventor or wish to become self-employed we have information for you.
Services and Resources

  • business to business mailing lists
  • company information and accounts
  • market research reports including Mintel and Key Note
  • business information factsheets available in the library or at home or work
  • guidance on protecting your products and services with patents, trade marks, registered designs and copyright
  • guidance on how to avoid infringing other people’s intellectual property rights
  • patent and trademark search service
  • FREE online resources available at home or work through library membership including COBRA – complete business reference advisor and British Standards.

Networking and events

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Debate on the Future of Europe – Citizens’ Dialogue, in London with the participation of Viviane Reding

Published on February 27, 2014 by in blog


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Renegotiation, Reform and Referendum: Does Britain have an EU future? Leeds Event

Published on February 18, 2014 by in blog

DATE: Thursday 6th March 2014
TIME: 6.00-7.30pm
VENUE: Conference Auditorium 2, University of Leeds, Leeds, Yorkshire


Rebecca Taylor MEP, Liberal Democrats
Dr Richard Corbett, Labour MEP Candidate and former cabinet member to President Van Rompuy
Alex Story, Conservative MEP Candidate
Dr Richard Hayton, Lecturer in Politics, University of Leeds
Chair: Bernard Ginns, Business Editor, Yorkshire Post

This upcoming Leeds seminar, in partnership with the European Commission Representation in the UK and the University of Leeds, aims to examine the key details around the proposed renegotiation of competences, the options for reform of how the European Union operates and the planned 2017 EU membership referendum. The seminar will assess the objectives of different political and societal stakeholders as well as explore the key drivers of public sentiment. It will examine what reforms the EU is being asked to undertake by key business, NGO and union stakeholders on a regular basis through the development of ordinary EU legislation and where extra political impetus outside busi-ness as usual would be required to achieve key objectives. The seminar would explore the areas of EU competence that different stakeholders would like to see addressed as part of any UK renegotiation initiative. It will also review how such renegotiation proposals and the wider UK debate is regarded in other member states and how EU partners plan to respond to British requests.

The seminar will also act as a launch event for the new publication Renegotiation, Reform and
Referendum: Does Britain have an EU future?- Free copies will be available.
This event is free to attend and open to all. Refreshments will be
provided. If you would like to attend, please RSVP to: events@fpc.org.uk

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Events and Activities

Published on February 14, 2014 by in blog, slider

The Enterprise club provides an opportunity to network and access information, support and advice on starting and running a business from set-up onwards.The workshops are open to anyone thinking about setting up their own business or becoming self employed and are FREE.

31st March 2014 6pm-7.45pm- Is starting a business right for you?
15th April 2014 6pm-7.45pmbookkeeping,tax and NI
28th April 2014 6pm-7.45pm- Marketing your new businesses
12th May 2014 -6 pm-7.45pm Business resources/the importance of intellectual property
tbc 2nd June 2014 6pm-7.45pm – Getting your business online
tbc 16th June 2014 6pm-7.45pm- TBC

Business Start Up Workshops with a variety of business support organisations, to point you in the right direction.

Format of the workshop:

How to access Leeds Libraries Business & IP Centre-Library business services

Business advice & guidance-Leeds , York & North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce

Format of the workshop:

Making tax and book keeping less painful-Chartered Institute of Management Accountants

Marketing your business-Chartered Institute of Marketing

Are you eligible for the New Enterprise Allowance (NEA)?-Job Centre Plus

Do you need a loan to get you started?-Leeds City Credit Union

Networking-Between speakers and attendees

For more information contact Business & IP Centre Leeds Tel: 0113 2478266 , E-mail: piu@leeds.gov.uk

Workshops also taking place:

15/4/14 – Garforth Library

13/5/14 – Farsley Library

16/7/14 – Halton Library

16/9/14 – Moor Allerton library

14/10/14 – Enterprise Foundation, Headingley

The Work Club at Leeds Central Library  April – May 2014

14/4/14 – Writing a CV

28/4/14 – interviews/interactive group exercises

12/5/14 – searching for vacancies

27/5/14 – Drop-in

The work club runs from 10.30am to 12.30pm in the portal, 2nd floor Leeds Central Library









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Creative Europe – Europe culture and creative sectors

Published on January 8, 2014 by in blog

European culture, cinema, television, music, literature, performing arts, heritage and related areas will benefit from increased support under the European Commission’s new Creative Europe programme, which was approved by the European Parliament on 19 November and by the Council of the EU on 5 December 2013. With a budget of €1.46 billion over the next seven years – 9% more than current levels – the programme will provide a boost for the cultural and creative sectors, which are a major source of jobs and growth.


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