If only the streets of Headingley could talk. For what can be such a laid-back, casual suburb of Leeds, can also become one of the most student-concentrated, bustling areas in the city. Only being a couple of miles North away from the city centre, Headingley can be an amazing day out for families, friends or even for your independent self.
The independent business scene of Headingley has blossomed over the past few years, introducing the students and permanent residents of Headingley to European cuisines, good old-fashioned pubs and stylish boutiques. We see no limit in Headingley’s potential to expand their social scene and continue being a thriving hub for the students of Leeds. The easiest ways to reach Headingley from Leeds City Centre would be a 15 minute drive, a 50 minute walk if you’re feeling active, or hop on the no.6 or 8 First bus from Leeds Bus Station.
If you’re an avid sports fan, why not head down to the infamous Headingley Stadium which is home to Leeds Rhinos Rugby Club, Yorkshire County Cricket Club and Yorkshire Carnegie Club. With the Yorkshire County Cricket Club winning 33 Championship titles, they have been acknowledged as one of the most successful teams in English Cricket.
Besides being famously known for their sporting facilities and teams, Headingley has equally become recognised for one of the most intoxicating pub crawls in Yorkshire (literally). The Otley Run – filled with the weird and wonderful group costumes combined with any possible form of alcohol you can imagine. It’s all fun and games taking on a pub crawl, depending if you even make it to the end. If you’re stumbling along Otley Road, you’ll likely find yourself in local favourites The Headingley Taps, The Three Horse Shoes and The Original Oak.
Other venues bringing the community together include Hyde Park Book Club and HEART. Hyde Park Book Club offers the people of Leeds near and far a delicious brunch menu along with a diverse range of events from ‘Green Screen’ – a combination of live music, fashion, art and a celebration of artists on July 23rd, and ‘Hyde Park Jazz Festival’ on July 31st. HEART is another arts and enterprise centre, run by the community for the community, offering a versatile workspace for classes and events. As well as hosting their popular events, HEART is home to The Green Yard, an independent plant shop that showcases a selection of indoor and outdoor plants in the courtyard. Everyones favourite Assembly Bar and Kitchen can also be found at HEART, serving a delicious menu and variety of drinks from 9am-9pm. With options for the little ones, vegetarians and vegans, it’s a place you can’t afford to miss.
Who needs to catch a flight away from England when you have such diverse international cuisines on your doorstep? If you’re a lover of Thai food, why not book a table at Zaap Thai on St Annes Road or Jino’s Thai Cafe on North Lane. Salvo’s, Giorgios Italian or Ecco Pizzeria will leave you dreaming of Italy for days. And obviously, even we know this, nothing beats a traditional English pub lunch. So if you’re craving a burger, steak pie or fish & chips, take a venture into Woodies Craft Ale House or The Original Oak. Proud family-run business Heaney & Mill is also located on Otley Road, after being re-established in 2017, they continue to serve up the best local produce through their kitchen, deli and cocktail bar.
If you’re just fancying a quick coffee and a bite to eat, take a detour from the usual Costa Coffee and try Fika North on Otley Road or Bare Coffee hidden away on Weetwood Lane, who serve up an array of coffee and organic groceries seven days a week. But a trip into Headingley isn’t complete without making a pit stop at the Artisan Bakery. Since opening up back in 2010, Ian Gaunt handcrafts his homemade baked goods and bread daily, fitting perfectly with the classic Yorkshire-banter atmosphere.
Take advantage of your time in Headingley by visiting the independent shops filling the streets of the town. Katie and May also offer a range of chic womenswear and as well as options for children. And who can go wrong buying a beautiful bunch of flowers from Floral Expression.
Even though Headingley is not known for its monthly markets, they’re the perfect place to pick up some locally-grown, fresh produce. Anything you pick is guaranteed to be organic and sourced within a 30 mile radius of Leeds, so pop down to their next market at Rose Garden, Headingley, Leeds, LS6 3JJ on July 10th from 9am.