Leeds At Home
Here at Visit Leeds, our priority is to keep visitors and locals safe and healthy. On this page you’ll find ways to enjoy Leeds from the comfort of your own home, with online activities, events and more. Coronavirus information and resources can be found here. Please stay safe and follow government advice.
THEATRE & PERFORMING ARTS
Leeds is proud to be home to a number of incredible performing arts companies and venues, and is one the only English cities outside London to boast an Opera House and Ballet company; Opera North and Northern Ballet.
Leeds based ballet company, Northern Ballet, have created a pay as you feel digital season so you can watch their awe inspiring ballets online. From the sensational and spooky Dracula to the brilliant Victoria and children’s ballet Little Red Riding Hood. Plus lots more to discover.
Opera North, have put three of their incredible operas online for you to view: The Ring Cycle, an acclaimed dramatic concert staging of Richard Wagner’s epic masterpiece, Walking Home: Sound Journeys, a unique series of sound journeys composed by five musicians during lockdown,The Lullaby Project, an online collection of lullabies featuring performers appearing at the Howard Assembly Room.
Ever fancied giving opera a go? Opera North are here to help! For those aged 55+, take part in weekly music and singing activity led by professional artists in a relaxed and friendly environment.
imitating the dog’s At Home selection includes a wide range of productions to watch. Dr Blood’s Old Travelling Show, a Leeds Playhouse and imitating the dog Co-production, is available to watch online. As well as Airlock, a live action graphic novel in three episodes, one of the first new works to be released from the series of BBC Arts and Arts Council England. Or watch STREET, a collection of real stories from the people of Cumbria – from Barrow to Brough, and Carlisle to Kendal and the villages and towns in between – retold as miniature digital installations.
Watch Leeds Playhouse’s Playhouse Connect: A Digital Showcase; an amazing digital celebration of the inspiring work created by their community during lockdown.
Watch the incredible Phoenix Dance Theatre perform Sharon Watson’s Windrush: Movement of the People, the first contemporary dance work to explore the narrative of the arrival of SS Empire Windrush that brought the first Caribbean migrants to the UK. The work is a lively celebration of the rise of multicultural Britain and features an uplifting soundtrack from calypso, jazz, gospel and reggae with original music created by Christella Litras and features set and costume design by Eleanor Bull.
Leeds Museums and Galleries have launched a Virtual Visit page with online exhibitions, podcasts, blog and activities to do from home. Have a look at their latest exhibitions including ‘Fast x Slow Fashion’, exploring Shopping in Leeds 1720 – 2020, Making Japan, Sounds of Our City and lots more. Join in with events and activities, there’s plenty for kids to enjoy too.
Animal lovers are in for a treat, meet the animals at Tropical World, they have meerkats, monkeys, crocodiles, butterflies and so much more. Looking for something fun for the children? Tropical world’s brand new online escape room is a great home learning resource for for 8-11 year olds, full of fun and entertainment.
Enjoy Harewood at Home as they share the collections, the stories and the landscape of this museum-accredited House; plus its 50-year-old Bird Garden, licensed zoo, and 120 acres of Grade I listed gardens and grounds. From hands-on tips to behind the scenes with the curators and collections team, the content will be shared on the Harewood blog, on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook @harewoodhouse and on their YouTube channel.
Left Bank Leeds have started two online creative communities on Facebook – one for those who love to draw, and another for knitters and stitchers. These are friendly places for discussion, skill sharing, tutorials and Q+As.
Craft Centre Leeds have also taken their latest exhibitions online and can be perused here. Art UK have launched Curations: a revolutionary free digital tool allowing anyone anywhere to create an online exhibition.
Fancy a cinema experience at home? Home Cinema Hire Leeds have got you covered, with indoor and outdoor packages available you’ll be able to enjoy the big screen experience in the comfort of your own home.
Feel like you’re really here with a virtual tour. There are city centre spots on VR Leeds or travel further afield with Welcome to Yorkshire. Or bring travel home with Leeds Bradford Airport’s Family Fun ideas.
Make staying at home a fun-filled adventure with Yorkshire Attractions’ activity top tips!
FOOD & DRINK
Whilst our restaurants, cafes and bars have closed many venues are still offering delicious dishes direct to your door. Supporting the local independents is more important now than ever. You can find out what many of Leeds wonderful independent eateries are doing during lockdown on Leeds Indie Food’s online directory.
With Restaurant Bar and Grill’s new Bar and Grill To Go, The Owl at Home and Harewood at Home you can now enjoy fine dining at home! Try out HOME’s new spring menus to celebrate the very best in season, delicious Yorkshire produce. Now’s a great time to hone your cooking and baking skills. Head to La Casita’s YouTube channel or Kanassa Kitchen’s Instagram for tasty recipes, or bake along with Ben from Leeds Bread Co-op. While Leeds Bradford Airport are sharing recipes with a European flavour. Leeds Food Tours have launched a Leeds Feed E-Book, available for just £5 or free if you book a tour.
If you’re in need of some cooking inspiration, explore Leeds based chef, Bobby Geetha’s YouTube channel. The MasterChef quarter finalist has a variety of exciting recipe ideas to try out in the comfort of your own home.
Meat lovers are in for a real treat with Fazenda at Home Box, with a choice of 3 boxes there’s plenty to choose from.
For authentic Malaysian cuisine, Dapur Malaysia at Home have a variety of exciting dishes to choose from.
You don’t have to miss out on a can of your favourite local brew either. Kirkstall Brewery, Northern Monk and North Brewing Co are delivering to your door! Visit Nomadic Beers online shop for tasty hand-crafted ales or take part in their virtual taproom events which take place every Saturday evening. Take a look at Frisky Bear Brewing Co who are also offering a wide range of gifts, beers and merchandise on their online shop.
Check out our blog, Enjoying Leeds Independent Food & Drink During Lockdown, for more inspiration.
With online shopping being the only option during lockdown, make sure to remember that many of your favourite independent shops are online too. With more and more independent shops in Leeds increasing their online presence, there has never been a better time to shop independent to feed your habit!
Harvey Nichols have launched their Virtual Concierge Service to bring a personal shopping experience direct to your device.
Although we can’t currently physically attend all events there are still plenty of ways to enjoy a virtual get to together. From dance classes to yoga, and sketching to workshops, there’s plenty of ways to join in with these online events!
Since their doors are closed, Leeds City Museum are sharing a craft idea every first Wednesday of the month. Keep crafting is a free, fantastic way to learn and be creative in the comfort of your home.
PopUp Painting invites you to unleash your creativity with a variety of events themed around famous artists including, Monet, Renoir and Van Gogh.
WATCH / LISTEN / READ
Watch. Yorkshire is fast becoming THE filming location of choice, with a number of productions using locations in Leeds. Harewood House features in the critically acclaimed Downtown Abbey film, ITV’s Victoria and BBC’s Gentleman Jack. You’ll spot a number of Leeds places in the BBC’s The ABC Murders and Loves, Lies & Records. And who could forget award-winning soap Emmerdale? There’s plenty more too, browse through Screen Yorkshire’s list or delve into the Yorkshire Film Archive.
Need a good film recommendation? Hyde Park Picture House are sharing their #HydeParkPick of films to watch while in lockdown on their Twitter feed. You can also find ways to support them there too.
Be sure to have a look at Leeds Live’s list of 24 TV shows that were made in Leeds. Have you seen them all? History buffs will love this ‘fantastically old-school video’ of Henry Moore from the BBC archives.
Watch a selection of audience favourites from the Leeds International Film Festival virtually through their new streaming platform Leeds Film Player.
Listen. Museums attract passionate people like moths to a flame, and Leeds Museums’ podcast, Museums n’that, gets to the very heart of the things that make them tick, by asking the questions you actually want to know.
Headrow House have your Saturday night playlist sorted. Their resident Redondo Beach DJs have carefully created a Club Soda playlist to keep the party going during lockdown!
Calling all music lovers! Music:Leeds have joined forces with Leeds United Football Club to create a playlist of the freshest new music coming out of Leeds.
Listen to pieces of work by forgotten women composers that have been rediscovered and recorded for the first time ever as part of a partnership project during Women’s History Month.
Explore a series of podcasts, produced as a part of the DARE partnership between Opera North and the University of Leeds. In the latest episode, join Poet Laureate Simon Armitage and composer Gavin Bryars, in expansive conversation about their respective art forms, and what happens when they are brought together.
Read. Now is a great time to get stuck into a good book. Check out iNews’ list of 10 books about Leeds that everyone should read. Get inspired for when you’re next able to visit Leeds by looking through our visitor guide.
LEEDS GOOD DEEDS
We’re bursting with pride when we hear of the good deeds being done in Leeds to support the NHS, key workers and those in need, and to help fight COVID-19. From individuals to brilliant businesses, we’d like to give them all a shout out.
Northern Monk Beer Co have been giving away free beer to key workers.
Leeds United joined up with His Church (HIS) to deliver essential food items to vulnerable families across Leeds in need of extra support during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Leeds United Foundation have been busy supporting the community in lots of ways. From tackling bullying to launching their own junior football league. Check out their latest projects here.
Leeds Cares, the charity that supports Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, is raising money to make sure more than 18,000 NHS workers in the city have everything they need to carry on their important work and deal with the outbreak.
A colourful artwork thanking the NHS heroes on Hyde Park Billboard. A collaboration between In Good Company Leeds, Laura Wellington, Morag Myerscough, FYI and Studio.Build.
In Good Company Leeds have been spreading a message of positivity and thanking the NHS through colourful artwork around the city. They’re encouraging you to do the same with their Posters for the People project.
Burley Banksy creates tribute to NHS staff at Leeds General Infirmary battling coronavirus.
The Leeds Irish Communities are coming together to support the Irish and wider community in Leeds through this tough time by creating Christmas Craic Packs. Each packs contains some Irish goodies, and a whole lot of love – including pictures and letters from primary school children, and a postcard with the number to use if they ever need a helping hand or a listening ear.
The lovely people at Leeds Bread Co-op have been busy baking bread which will be included in the food parcels Leeds City Council are putting together for people across the city who are unable to access food right now.
My Thai restaurant group launch non-profit deli to raise funds for Yorkshires most vulnerable.
Simon Grybas, co-owner of My Thai Restaurant at the Merrion Centre, has joined forces with Leeds charity the Real Junk Food project to arrange one of the city’s largest charitable Christmas collections in 2020 at the Merrion Centre.
Opera North have launched their Christmas giving campaign; Light Up Lives. Recognising the impact on wellbeing which music can have, Opera North has continued providing inspiration, entertainment and escapism throughout this challenging year. The Light Up Lives campaign seeks to raise funds to continue and extend this work in local communities, using music to bring people together, even when apart.
#LeedsSaysThanks – Leeds City Council sets up scheme to thank frontline workers for enormous efforts during COVID-19 pandemic. So far, 68 of Leeds’ cultural and sporting organisations have joined the scheme including Leeds United, Leeds Rhinos, Yorkshire County Cricket Club, first direct arena, Henry Moore Institute and Phoenix Dance Theatre.