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Leeds City Centre Area Guide for Students

There are lots of things to do in Leeds and plenty to explore in this friendly city of ours

Leeds is a lively, modern and cosmopolitan city that is also rich in culture and heritage. There is lots to explore and plenty of things to do in this friendly city of ours. Leeds feels compact for a big city; more than 750,000 people live within our city boundaries and over 100,000 people come to work in the city centre every day. An estimated 30,000 students live in leeds, attending one of the 3 major universities.

About Leeds

If you’re looking for things to do in Leeds City Centre, you won’t be disappointed. Trendy shops, a variety of music venues, traditional and contemporary pubs and bars, quiet spaces and excellent transport links make this city very student-friendly.
Both the University of Leeds and Leeds Beckett University’s main campuses are within 10 minutes’ walk of this part of the city, so you won’t feel as if you’re going out of your way to get there.

Things to do in Leeds City Centre

Leeds Trinity Shopping Centre

Leeds trinity

Home to over 100 shops and restaurants, Trinity is the jewel in Leeds city centre’s retail crown. Major chains such as Marks and Spencer sit alongside trendy fashion outlets like Urban Outfitters, while the Everyman Cinema on the top floor offers great food and films to cap off a long day of retail therapy.


Leeds First Direct Arena

Leeds first direct arena

This 13,500 capacity venue hosts some of the biggest acts in music and stand-up comedy, as well as live sports such as darts, boxing and wrestling. Before the show starts, there’s plenty of places to get a drink nearby, as well as the fd bar for a relaxing three-course meal.


Leeds Millennium Square

Leeds Millennium Square concert

Run by Leeds City Council, this open space hosts plenty of live events throughout the year. In November and December, there’s the Christmas Market and in January and February, there’s an ice rink, so get your skates on! They screen live coverage of major sporting events in spring and summer too.

Universities in Leeds

University of Leeds

Leeds University

The oldest of three universities in Leeds, it has over 30,000 students and is within 10 minutes’ walk of the city centre. The main campus has a number of shops and places to grab a bite to eat in between seminars and lectures, while there’s also a smaller campus in nearby Headingley.

Address: University of Leeds, Leeds LS2 9JT
Tel: 0113 243 1751


Leeds Beckett University

Leeds Beckett University

Formerly known as Leeds Metropolitan and Leeds Carnegie University, this is the newer of the two biggest unis in the city and is slightly closer to the city centre. It has plenty of courses on offer, a number of bars to rock out in at night and a careers service for graduates looking to enter the big, wide world of work.

Address: Leeds Beckett University, Leeds LS1 3HE
Tel: 0113 812 0000


Leeds Trinity University

Trinity city centre

A small yet growing university, Leeds Trinity offers much of what the other two universities do, but with all the convenience of having everything on one campus. It’s not too far from Horsforth Rail Station, while it’s easily served by some bus routes which go through Beckett Park itself.

Address: Brownberrie Ln, Horsforth, Leeds, LS18 5HD
Tel: 0113 283 7100

Student Unions

Leeds University Student Union

Student union

Leeds University’s student union represents more than 30,000 students on its campuses, offering discounts to bars and shops in the city among other things. They also provide support around getting into work during and after your studies and run various societies based on special interests like music, sport and art.

Address: Leeds University Union, Lifton Place, Leeds LS2 9JZ
Tel: 0113 380 140


Leeds Beckett Union

Leeds Beckett Union

Representing all students at Beckett’s City Campus, this student union runs all kinds of activities including gigs, charity fundraisers and advice for anyone having problems with their studies, money or anything else. They also run theatres and bars in the City Campus too, with prices cheaper than the norm in Leeds.

AddressPortland Building, City Campus, Portland Way, LS1 3HE
Tel0113 8128 400


Leeds Trinity Student Union

Leeds Trinity Student Union

Leeds Trinity Student Union (LTSU) is a member of the National Union of Students and is run by students representing all students associated with Leeds Trinity University. When becoming a Leeds Trinity student, you'll be given a NUS discount card and the opportunity to take part in Academic help & support, voting for Student Council and much more.

Address: Brownberrie Lane, Horsforth, LS18 5HD
Tel: 0113 283 7328


Working in Leeds

For students, recent graduates and anyone else living in Leeds City Centre, there’s no shortage of places to look for and find work. Most employment agencies have offices here, while the two main universities have careers services to help pair you with the right employer.


My Leeds Jobs    University of Leeds Careers Service    Employment4Students

Getting around


Students can take advantage of the MCard, which offers unlimited bus travel around West Yorkshire for £84 per month They can be bought from Leeds City Bus Station. Most major bus routes go through the City Centre to all parts of Leeds and beyond.


Leeds Station provides routes to other major cities including London, Glasgow, Birmingham and Manchester. Trains take two-and-a-half hours to London Kings Cross, two hours to Birmingham New Street and around an hour to Manchester Victoria.


Leeds Coach Station is adjoined to the Bus Station and is the terminus for routes run by National Express. Although cheaper, journeys to some cities take a little longer - to London Victoria, for example, they can take four and a half hours. Megabus coaches can be boarded on Kirkgate, just a few minutes from the Coach Station.


West Yorkshire Metro   Northern Rail   First TransPennine Express   East Coast Mainline   National Express   Megabus

Sports and Leisure in Leeds

Leeds United

Although Elland Road is in Beeston, regular shuttle buses are put on before each home game from Neville Street, near Leeds Rail Station. They are the city’s only professional football club and play in the Championship, English football’s second-tier league.

Address: Leeds United Football Club, Elland Road, Leeds LS11 0ES


Tel: 0871 334 1919

Location: Just off the M621, around a mile south of the city centre

PureGym Leeds South

This budget gym chain run one near the Corn Exchange, handily located for walking to and from your property. It’s one of the cheapest around, with monthly membership less than £20, while there are several free classes you can enrol on.

Address: PureGym Leeds South, 4 Cloth Hall Street, Leeds LS1 2HD


Tel: 0845 077 3252

Location: Just opposite the Corn Exchange, near Call Lane

VirginActive Gym - The Light

This gym has a more convenient location in relation to the two universities and, unlike many others, has its own swimming pool, so you don’t have to hit the treadmill every time! There’s also a sauna and spa to use if you want to unwind rather than do nothing but burn calories.

Address: Unit 21 The Light, The Headrow, Leeds Light LS1 8TL


Tel: 0113 350 5644

Shopping in Leeds

Victoria Gate

Due to open early next year, this brand new shopping centre will be home to a John Lewis, as well as many other shops which are new to Leeds. It’s close to the Victoria Quarter, which has plenty of upmarket shops, as well as the city’s branch of Harvey Nichols. All that is why Leeds is known as the ‘Knightsbridge of the North.


Location: Eastgate, Leeds - near the Bus Station

Leeds Kirkgate Market

For a bargain on such things as clothes, home furnishings and fresh fruit and veg, why not head to one of Europe’s largest indoor markets. Undergoing refurbishment, there are all kinds of stalls where you can stock up on part of the weekly shop, enjoy a quick lunch at places like Cafe Moor and buy some stuff to spruce up your new flat.

Address: Markets Service, 34 George Street, Leeds, LS2 7HY


Tel: 0113 378 1950

Location: On Vicar Lane and Kirkgate, opposite Victoria Quarter

Merrion Centre

Close to the two universities, the Merrion Centre is the best place to shop for all your essentials. A Morrisons supermarket sits alongside branches of Wilko, Boots, O2 and Poundworld, meaning you don’t have to take the car to get your weekly shop.

Address: The Merrion Centre, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 8NG


Tel: 0113 222 1285

Location: Just north of St John’s Centre and opposite Leeds City College on Woodhouse Lane

Nightlife and Entertainment in Leeds

Leeds has a host of theatres, nightclubs, music venues, bars and pubs, offering all kinds of entertainment to all kinds of people and tastes. For live music, the O2 Academy provides regular gigs, while the West Yorkshire Playhouse, Grand Theatre and City Varieties offer you the chance to see plays written by world-class playwrights.



Restaurants & Cafes in Leeds

From traditional Yorkshire cuisine to dishes from as far afield as Brazil, Japan and Australia, there’s a restaurant for just about every taste possible in the city centre.

Whitelock’s -

The oldest pub in Leeds, it serves top-class food made from locally-sourced ingredients as well as ales from local breweries in and near to Leeds. Look out for brews from the Kirkstall Brewery!

Fazenda -

This Brazilian steakhouse is in the trendy Granary Wharf part of Leeds City Centre and, true to its location, offers a contemporary twist on local dishes such as picanha and linguica.

Trinity Kitchen -

Located in Trinity Leeds, the sprawling Trinity Kitchen has plenty of permanent and pop-up restaurants. Tortilla serves freshly-made burritos, Chip+Fish does, well, fish and chips and Pho provides fragrant Vietnamese dishes to keep you warm.

2 Oxford Place -

For afternoon tea, gluten-free meals and sandwiches in a relaxed atmosphere, 2 Oxford Place is just the ticket. They even have an extensive vegetarian and vegan menu if you refuse to eat meat or dairy.

Moments Coffee -

Located on the banks of the River Aire, this coffee shop serves fresh food to go as well as good, honest dishes such as a full English breakfast. Of course, the coffee is the star of the show.

Green Spaces & Parks in Leeds

Park Square is arguably the most tranquil part of town, being surrounded by Georgian-era offices and lined with trees. It’s a good spot to read a book during lunch or to get away from the crowds that populate Briggate and the Headrow.

Merrion Street Gardens

Merrion Street Gardens Leeds

Park Square

Park square Leeds

Woodhouse Moor Park

Hospitals Doctors and Emergency Services in Leeds

There are plenty of hospitals and police stations in Leeds to contact in case of emergencies. Here, we list some of the most convenient to visit should you need to get in touch.

Leeds General Infirmary Hospital (LGI)

Address: Great George St, Leeds, West Yorkshire LS1 3EX


Tel: 0113 243 2799

St. James’s University Hospital

Address: St James’s University Hospital, Beckett St, Leeds, West Yorkshire LS9 7TF


Tel: 0113 243 3144


Approximate Distance

Leeds General Infirmary

650 yards

Nuffield Health, Leeds Hospital

700 yards

Leeds Dental Hospital

0.5 miles

Malham House Day Hospital

0.6 miles

The Mount

0.7 miles

Becklin Centre

1.1 miles

St James's Hospital

1.3 miles

St Marys House Day Hospital

1.7 miles

Doctor's Surgeries or GP's in Leeds

The nearest surgery in Leeds city centre is The Light NHS GP Surgery, in a walking distance of approx. 370 yards away. You can visit the NHS Choices website to check if new NHS patients are currently being accepted.

Surgeries & GP's

Approximate Distance

The Light NHS GP Surgery

370 yards

York Street Health Centre

0.6 miles

Dr Greenway J & Partners

0.7 miles

Dr Ottman & Partners

0.8 miles

The Practice Lincoln Green

0.9 miles

Shakespeare Medical Practice

0.9 miles

Dr Bhandary L V & Partners

1 mile

Woodhouse Health Centre

1.1 miles

Dentists & Opticians in Leeds

Briggate Dental Practice is the closest to Leeds city centre, approx. 450 yards away. You can view the NHS Choices website to check if the facility is currently accepting new NHS patients. Boots (Albion Arcade) is considered the nearest opticians.


Approximate Distance

Briggate Dental Practice

440 yards

Clarendon Dental Spa

880 yards

Quarry House Dental Practice

0.6 miles

Burmantofts Dental Practice

0.8 miles

New Smile Dental Care

0.8 miles

Mr P A Bridge

1 mile

Genix Healthcare Ltd

1 mile



Approximate Distance

Boots on Albion Arcade

80 yards

Vision Plus Ltd

150 yards

Optical Express

190 yards

Vision Express

190 yards


220 yards

David H Myers

220 yards

Leeds Central Police Station

Leeds crime rate is considerably low and is policed by approximately 5,000 police officers and 3,500 security staff. West Yorkshire police is responsible for the safety and security of Leeds and is the country's fourth largest force.

Address: Leeds Central Police Station, Park Street, Leeds LS1 3BY


Contact: For queries considered non-urgent you can contact 101. For emergency cases, please contact 999.



Popular areas around Leeds City Centre


Hugely popular among students, this suburb is ideal if you want to watch the rugby, go for a long lunch or take on the infamous Otley Run.

Hyde Park

Close to the City Centre, Hyde Park has plenty of cheap and cheerful places to visit including the Picture House and Brudenell Social Club. Its proximity to the university district does it no harm either.


One of the quieter parts of Leeds, Meanwood is packed with great-value shops and quirky eateries to keep you clothed and fed throughout your time here. It also has the underrated Meanwood Valley Park, if you fancy a peaceful walk on a Sunday morning.