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Flickr: Michael D Beckwith

15 things you learn when you move to Leeds

Written by
Mark Whittle

Moving to a new place can be a nerve-wracking experience. It doesn’t help matters that local customs and colloquialisms can make your new home seem even stranger. Luckily, Leeds folk are a friendly bunch and, if you’re fortunate enough to move here, you’ll soon learn your way around.

In the meantime, to offer a helping hand, we’ve compiled a list of some things you’ll soon learn once you arrive in our fair city.

1) Terms of endearment like "flower", "petal" and "love" are gender neutral.

Flickr: Stephen Griffin

No matter what your gender, you'll be referred to as one of these during your time in Leeds. Even if you’re a man, don’t be surprised if a tattooed, six-foot tall bouncer waves you into bar or club with a cheery, “In you go, petal”.

2) The names you refer to baked goods with is a topic every bit as controversial as politics or religion.

Flickr: Jim Lukach

“Can I get a roll, please?” It's a question that will be met first with a quizzical look, followed by one of these responses:

“You mean a breadcake?”

“Nah, you’re after a bap, right?”

“Are you sure you don’t mean cob?”

3) Union and League are two very important words, learn what they mean and choose carefully.

Flickr: generalising

Also, if you’re from the south, it's best to remove the word rugger from your vocabulary altogether.

4) You've been eating chips the wrong way the whole time.

Flickr: Simon Thomas

Just think of all those potatoes you've wasted by not sticking gravy on.

5) If there’s something you like, Leeds will probably have a festival for it.

Flickr: J.u.p

Films, music, literature, theatre, art, street food, gin, beer, cider, the waterfront, brass bands, robots – the list is endless.

6) Yes, that building does look rusty. Yes, It’s always looked like that. Yes, it’s meant to.

Flickr: Paul Stevenson, Broadcasting Place

And you won’t believe how much Broadcasting Tower cost to build either.

7) Those narrow paths you've been walking along? Those, my friend, are ginnels.

Flickr: Tim Green

Or should that be snicket?

8) Turns out, London isn’t the centre of the universe. 

Flickr: Filippo Diotalevi

You mean all the exciting things and people aren’t located in one area of the country? Television has been lying to you, except when they told you it was friendlier up here. That bit is true.

9) Your favourite drinking den will change on a daily basis.

Flickr: Adam Bruderer, Whitelocks

And just when you think you've nailed it, another one opens up

10) You'll find out what snow really looks like.

Flickr: Paul Holloway

And you'll learn to deal with it, too.

11) You'll be disappointed if a bar doesn't sell you a pizza as well as a beer.

Flickr: torbakhopper

We've been spoilt by the doughy goodness of The Belgrave, Sela Bar and White Cloth Gallery.

12) You're never more than six feet away from a beard.

Flcikr: Ryan McFarland

And we mean in any direction – they're everywhere.

13) When you hear "street food", don't just assume it's a greasy burger van.

Trinity Kitchen, Northern Bloc

Also, don't necessarily think it will be in the street either, thanks to Trinity Kitchen.

14) For some inexplicable reason, the city is home to its very own Egyptian Temple.

Flickr: Sarah Grice

And what's inside Leeds Temple Works (apart from art exhibitions)? One of the largest rooms in the world, of course.

15) You don't have to be religious to know you've arrived in God's own county.

Flickr: Carl Milner

You don't need any fancy words to go along with this one.

Things you might not know about Leeds.

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