Leeds City

Exploring Leeds

Leeds is the UK’s fourth-most populous urban area with a reported population of 2.6 million in 2013. The city is home to five universities and has the UK’s fourth-largest student population and in recent years has become the largest legal and financial centre outside London.

Leeds is well known for being a thriving cosmopolitan city set within the serine Yorkshire countryside. The beauty of the Yorkshire Dales is just on the doorstep of the city. The beautiful valleys, delightful towns and villages, attractions, and more are all a visitor could wish for.

The Dales are famous for their wonderful scenery. Deep valleys, known as dales, with roads meandering between drystone walls and a patchwork of hay meadows and field barns. Up above is heather moorland and distinctive hills, such as the much loved Three Peaks.

5 Facts About Leeds 

  • Fizzy drinks were invented in Leeds 250 years ago when Joseph Priestley discovered a way of infusing water with carbon dioxide.
  • Michael Marks opened his Penny Bazaar which grew into Marks & Spencer.
  • The world’s first moving pictures were shot in Leeds. Cinema is undoubtedly one of the most popular forms of entertainment in the world. Over the years, there have been countless advances in the field. And yet, the humble origins of the moving picture lay in Leeds.
  • The A58(M) inner ring road was the country’s first urban motorway.
  • Leeds Train Station has 17 platforms, it opened in 1938 and has been rebuilt twice in 1967 and 2002.


A Brief History of Leeds 

Leeds, derived from the Celtic name and area of the kingdom Elmet Loidis, is the largest city in the county of We st Yorkshire in Northern England.

In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries Leeds prospered and expanded as a centre of the woollen industry and it continued to expand rapidly in the Industrial Revolution. The industrial revolution resulted in the radical growth of Leeds, whose population had risen to over 150,000 by 1840. Various areas in Leeds developed different roles in the industrial revolution. The city centre became a major centre of transport and commerce.

By 1893 Leeds had been granted city status.

Today Leeds is known as one of eight core cities within the UK and Leeds is generally regarded as the dominant city of the ceremonial county of West Yorkshire.

Leeds Culture 

Leeds is no stranger to culture. The streets of this bustling city are packed to the rafters with galleries and museums. Leeds City Museum takes on the world’s long history, while the Royal Armouries open up a world of weaponry. Leeds Art Galleries range from Leeds Art Gallery, with its staggering collection of twentieth century British art, and the Henry Moore Institute, home to a constantly changing array of modern sculpture, to independent venues, like the White Cloth Gallery and The Tetley.


Leeds has over 16 museums and galleries including 9 that are council-run.

Leeds City Museum opened in 2008 in Millennium Square showcases the city’s designated collections of local history, world cultures, natural history, archaeology, everything from the famous Leeds tiger to a 3,000 year old mummy

Abbey House Museum is housed in the former gatehouse of Kirkstall Abbey, and includes walk-through Victorian streets and galleries describing the history of the abbey, childhood, and Victorian Leeds.

Armley Mills Industrial Museum is housed in what was once the world’s largest woollen mill, and includes industrial machinery and railway locomotives. This museum also shows the first known moving pictures in the world which were taken in the city, by Louis Le Prince, of a Roundhay Garden Scene and of Leeds Bridge in 1888.

Thwaite Mills Watermill Museum is a fully restored 1820s water-powered mill on the River Aire to the east of the city centre.

Art Galleries

Leeds Art Gallery which was opened in 1888 is home to many famous art works. Including Victorian art and Damien Hirst’s Black Sheep with Golden Horns (2009), alongside works of national importance from artists including Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth.

Once you have explored the art gallery there is an artspace where you can relax with art materials and activities that explore themes inspired by our current exhibitions.

The Henry Moore Foundation was founded by the artist and his family in 1977 to encourage public appreciation of the visual arts. The art gallery is home to a constantly changing array of modern artwork and sculptures. Go to our Leeds page to find out about the security we can provide in this beautiful city.


Leeds News

Retail in Leeds

Preventing Retail Crime in Leeds

Retail crime has always been a pressing matter in Leeds but with the outbreak of the Coronavirus it has become more and more important to stay in control.

Crime in Leeds Revealed

Leeds Crime Revealed

Recorded crime is falling across the county with a 2.6 per cent reduction in offences in West Yorkshire in 2019/20 with around 7,600 fewer victims, this is a ignificant reduction.

Crime in Leeds

Understanding Leeds Most Common Crimes

In past years Leeds has been known and recognized for its high crime rate. This is something that has reflected negatively on the city.