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The Town Hall was built as a statement of civic pride, visible evidence of the importance of Leeds as a major centre of trade and commerce. It is still so today, and although it is no longer the centre of municipal administration and justice, it fulfils many important functions.

Whilst many of the Town Hall’s previous responsibilities have been taken over by Leeds Civic Hall, such as housing the council chambers, the Town Hall is still a vital part of the city today, hosting a variety of events throughout the year.

The Victoria Hall continues to provide a venue for concerts of all kinds. The Leeds International Concert Season, the triennial Piano Competition, the Christmas Carol Service for Leeds Schools, and recitals on the magnificent organ takes place there. Prayer meetings, light entertainment, wrestling matches, auctions and dances are all held in the Town Hall.

The Town Hall has become a popular conference venue. The old Council Chamber, which in 1933 became the Crown Court, is now the Albert Room, part of a suite of rooms used for conferences. Individual rooms can be hired for private events. There is a bar, and catering facilities are available.

Being Yorkshire’s premier ceremony venue, Leeds Town Hall also provides an ideal setting for your wedding or civil partnership. Smaller ceremonies take place at the Brodrick Suite, accommodating up to 40 guests. With contemporary style and furnishings, the suite also holds a comfortable interview lounge and stylish waiting area. Larger wedding parties take place in the impressive Albert Room, which hosts nearer 100 guests.

Some of the old features of the Town Hall remain. The old borough courtroom is still intact, with wooden benches and stairs leading down from the dock into the basement. The basement itself, now no longer used as a Bridewell, is a storage area, though parts of the old Bridewell, including the cells under the stairs, still remain.

Tours of the Town Hall are arranged on Heritage Days, when people are given a guided tour of the building and can visit areas not usually open to members of the public.

Other events at the Town Hall include Leeds International Beer Festival, which is a four-day annual festival celebrating and promoting craft beer brewed in the UK and overseas. Along with supporting hundreds of different beers and ciders, the festival also includes a street food market and hosts live music across two stages.

Leeds International Film Festival is another popular event which in part takes place at the Town Hall. Outside of London, it is the largest film festival in England and this showed in 2015 when viewings of over 300 films saw the festival welcome over 40,000 visitors. Many of the festival’s films are screened at the Town Hall, which during the event is also home to the festival office.

The workmen who built the tower all those years ago saw a very different Leeds; they would have difficulty recognising it today. But one thing has not changed. The Town Hall still stands as a magnificent building at the heart of the city.


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Click images to enlarge
Town Hall from the east, 1999
Town Hall from the east, 1999
Town Hall from Mandela Gardens
Town Hall from Mandela Gardens
View from the Town Hall
View from the Town Hall
View from the Town Hall
View from the Town Hall
View from the Town Hall
View from the Town Hall




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© 2003 Leeds City Council | Site created by: LCC electronic information team | 25 March 2003