If you’re a newcomer to Leeds, welcome! Your first few days may seem daunting, especially if you don’t know anyone, but luckily you’re in the right place. A recent nationwide survey by Jury’s Inn revealed that Leeds is one of the friendliest cities in the whole of the UK, while other similar studies have shown that Leeds regularly tops the rankings as one of the friendliest places in the country for women and members of the LGBT+ community. So, now you know that you’re in a city that’s full of people who are dying to make your acquaintance, it’s time to get out and meet them! Here are the best ways to make friends, lovers, and everything in between in Leeds.
Hit Up the Bars
It’s no secret that Leeds has some of the best nightlife in the whole country, with hundreds of bars catering to every kind of person. If you’re a young professional looking to expand your network, the cluster of hip and happening bars and pubs in Hyde Park are the place to go, especially if you’re a student. If you’re an LGBT+ individual hoping to scope out some new queer peers, then the so-called “Freedom Quarter” down by The Calls is bustling every night of the week. Then you have the goth bars, the heavy metal bars, the art-scene bars, and countless other watering holes catering to every type of person.
Get into the Gig Scene
If there’s one thing Leeds does better than anywhere else, it’s gigs. Scope out the hottest venues in the city to see where your favourite artists are playing and you’re guaranteed to start a conversation with some like-minded peers. The Brudenell Social Club is where the hipster and indie crowd usually congregates, while the Temple of Boom is popular with the rock crowd. Belgrave Music Hall is where the students tend to live, while Seven Arts is where you can let your freak flag fly.
Flex Your Trivia Muscles at a Pub Quiz
Whatever the night of the week, there’s a ton of different pub quizzes in the city to take your pick from. For the earlier half of the week, Parkside Tavern hosts a Speedquiz on a Tuesday night, featuring fast-paced question and answer-style quizzing, much like that of a TV game show than a pub quiz.
With a more modern pub quiz on offer the Speedquiz brand of pub quiz is hugely popular in the city. It goes hand in hand with the increasing demand in online gaming as it’s readily available and easy to access. Games offered by Paddy Power are available on mobile devices, so you can play whilst you’re waiting for your mates to turn up.
For those preferring to head down to the pub at the weekend, The Library on Woodhouse Lane hosts a more unconventional pen and paper quiz on a Sunday, with prizes to suit the wide-ranging topics of questions and activities which could net your team points.
If all else fails, the internet is your friend. There are countless social network groups in Leeds catering to people who are looking to expand their local friendship circle. Apps like Meetup are hugely popular with millennials and are a great way to explore the best that the city has to offer whilst mingling with new people. You can also try platforms such as Leeds CitySocializer, which organises a huge number of events throughout the month.
As you can see here, there’s no excuse for being alone in Leeds. There really is something for everyone in this city, so take a deep breath, swallow your nerves and head out to make some friends.