Omar and Ed’s Stories

Omar Mushtaq (32) has lived, worked, and volunteered in Beeston his whole life. He attended local schools including St Luke’s Primary, and Bradford College.

He’s volunteered in the community for over 15 years: running innovative youth programmes, mentoring and coaching, employment and education support work, serving as a trustee/director at the Hamara Centre, helping with the rebuild of one of the local community mosques, work with the homeless, community fundraising, and advice and advocacy for a wide range of local people. Up to now, he’s co-run two local businesses – but is ready for a new challenge.

He lives in the local community, with his young family. He’s into cricket, boxing, litterpicking – and juggling community life, family, and work..!

Ed Carlisle (44) is originally from an old Sheffield family – but sadly moved south as a child, and grew up in different corners of the UK. He came to Leeds in the 1990s to study at the university, and fell in love with the city on Day 1.

He’s lived, worked, and volunteered around central and south Leeds for 20+ years, co-leading or supporting dozens of local projects, charities, and events. These include: the Big Bike Fix, Holbeck Viaduct, Beeston Festival, the local Urban Task Force, the LS10/LS10 CRAP group, Hunslet and Holbeck Galas, Leeds Repair Café, Cross Flatts parkrun, LS-TEN skatepark, SLATE, schools and youth work, community camps, and hiking and sports programmes. (There is in fact more! Click here for more info.)

For 15 years, he co-ran Leeds charity Together for Peace. He previously did mentoring and advocacy work at the former Park Lane College, and for Leeds youth charity Everything Is Possible; and he’s worked in retail, pubs, and farming. He’s stood for the Green Party in the Council elections for this ward from 2015, until breaking through and becoming elected as a city councillor here in May 2022. He also stood in the Parliamentary elections in 2017 and 2019.

He likes football, running, squash, cycling, cats, some dogs, films, coffee, and real ale. He considers himself a Christian, although is not a regular church-goer – and is massively inspired by people he knows of other faiths and none.

Ed is married to Tania, with a cracking daughter Emily (8) and son Alex (4). They live in Beeston Hill, in the heart of the local community.