Leeds is the commercial capital of Yorkshire and has been transformed almost beyond recognition over the decades. The city is one of the UK’s most exciting cultural hubs and is home to a variety of world-class theatre and concert venues, eateries, museums and clubs. Both the BBC and ITV have sizeable bases in the city, and it is the birthplace of leading cultural figures including Julian Barratt, Malcolm McDowell, Angela Griffin, Brian Mosley, Peter O’Toole, John Simm, Ernie Wise, Gabby Logan, Gaynor Faye and Mel B.
The city is home to The Theatre, The Grand Theatre and the West Yorkshire Playhouse. Its most well-known concert venues include the First Direct Arena, O2 Academy, the University of Leeds, Leeds Metropolitan University, the Belgrave Music Hall and the City Varieties Music Hall. The intimate Brudenell Social Club, located in the bohemian, student-friendly area of Hyde Park just a mile or so out of the city centre, is one of the most-loved cult venues in the UK.
The long-running soap Emmerdale is shot at a purpose-built set at the Harewood Estate and at ITV Yorkshire’s studios on Kirkstall Road where the likes of A Touch of Frost, Heartbeat, 3-2-1 and The Royal were created. Countdown was filmed at the studios until 2009. ActUpNorth Leeds is also based at Kirkstall Road.
If you’re seeking an educational day out in Leeds, you may well wish to head to the Royal Armouries, home to the national arms and armour collection, and the City Art Gallery, which has one of the finest collections of 20th century art outside of the capital. Arts festivals and exhibitions take place throughout the year, and the vast range of eateries means you’ll never struggle to find something that suits no matter what your tastes are, with culinary cultures from around the world being represented generously.
Kirkstall Abbey is one of the most well-known beauty sports in West Yorkshire. The 12th century Cistercian monasteries is surrounded by gorgeous parkland and been a source of inspiration for thousands of painters. It offers fascinating wildlife, stunning greenery and features an interactive visitor centre as well as the Abbey House Museum, which features Victorian streets and shops with their original fittings.
Roundhay Park is one of Europe’s biggest city parks and is located three miles out of the city. It includes epic parkland, beautiful lakes, gardens and woodlands as well as a number of cafes and playgrounds. The site is also home to Tropical World, which welcomes more than a million people through its doors each year and enables you to witness alien landscapes and breath-taking plant life.
Leeds Corn Exchange is one of the most exciting places to shop in the city and is home to a range of distinctive boutiques and cafes. The Exchange itself is an oval Grade I listed building and first opened in 1863. The Exchange is located just across the road from Kirkgate Market, which is the largest covered market in Europe and was the birthplace of Marks and Spencer. The city also plays host to other world-famous retail hubs including the White Rose Centre, Trinity Leeds and The Core. Leeds is surrounded by some of the lushest countryside Yorkshire has to offer, with its railway station and Leeds Bradford Airport enabling you to reach a range of leading national and international locations with ease.
ActUpNorth are proud to have a base in this vibrant Yorkshire city.