Leeds is a large city in the North England next to the river Aire. It started as Loidis in the 5th century, but wasn’t officially founded as Leeds until 1207. It is located 190 miles north to northwest of central London and its city centre is 206 feet above sea level. Leeds has the second highest population of an authority district in the UK, with Birmingham having the highest, and has the second largest metropolitan district of any UK city with Doncaster having the largest.
In the 17th and 18th century Leeds became a major influence for its production and trade of wool, which led to it being an important industrial centre for wool, flax, engineering and print during the Industrial Revolution. Now Leeds is a lively city with three major universities.
The climate of Leeds is oceanic meaning that it is greatly influenced by the Atlantic and the Pennines. Winters are often chilly and cloudy with snow and frost being the norm and a mean temperature of 3⁰C in January and February, but temperatures falling into the minus are becoming more common. The summers of Leeds are often mild with July as the warmest month having a mean temperature of 16⁰C, and a high of 20⁰C. Spring and autumn are often dry and mild, but frost is not unheard of during these months. Leeds is known as one of the direst cities of the UK having an annual rainfall of 660mm.
Leeds is a large city, so you’ll find plenty of dining options. If you want a quick snack or some fast food, you’ll find the usual chains like McDonalds or Subway along Leeds’ main streets Briggate and The Headrow. You can also find traditional British bakers Greggs along these roads, giving a chance to experience a ‘proper pasty’. If you want to sit down for a quick yet wholesome meal, then consider going to Nando’s (also on Briggate) for a chicken based meal. If you want to go for a special meal, then luxury Italian chain Casa Mia in Millenium Square is the best place for you to venture. Their Gnocchi is superb.
There’s plenty of play options in Leeds, too. Discover the UK’s war history at the Royal Armouries Museum and also view the greatest armoury collection of the UK. Admire great masterpieces dated as far back as the 17th century in the Leeds Gallery. For a fun night out, check out Mr Ben’s Comedy Club. Leeds has many stunning parks to explore, the two biggest being Roundhay Park and Temple Newsam, which is host venue of musical events like Opera In The Park, Party in The Park, and the Leeds Festival, which used to take place in Roundhay Park.
Leeds has five famous theatres: the Grand Theatre, Carriage Works, City Varieties, Opera North and West Yorkshire Playhouse.
City Varieties has recently been refurbished and re-opened, and is famous for having hosted greats like Charlie Chaplin and Houdini. It was also the venue of the BBC programme The Good Old Days.
Living in the city centre of Leeds lets you be close to the action, and there are many stylish and affordable city flats to be found.
There are also many very vibrant and upcoming areas of Leeds, some of which being Headingley and Chapel Allerton. The quieter yet more prestigious areas include Roundhay, Oakwood and Moortown.
Leeds is a University city and home to the University Of Leeds, Leeds Metorpolitan, and Leeds Trinity University College. The Leeds City College is the third largest further education college in the UK.
Author: This article was written by Sarah Oxley on behalf of ONE UK, rental agency for the Leeds area. Find out more about flats in Leeds here. Sarah has lived in Leeds for two and a half years, and is a big fan of the city’s vibrancy and attractions.