Working in Leeds
Leeds has a strong population of undergraduates, with its universities offering qualifying law degrees, and this population feeds into a bustling community of young professionals. A number of major law training providers have opened centres in Leeds in recent years, marking it as a legal hub in its own right.
Practising law in Leeds gives you the opportunity to work with individual and business clients, in a city with a varied population and a variety of needs. A number of reputable regional firms are headquartered in Leeds, with some operating solely out of the city, while others serve other areas of Yorkshire: it’s a chance to work at the forefront of the community in a variety of contentious and advisory areas of law. With healthcare, digital, manufacturing and financial sectors all booming in Leeds, you can expect your clients to be both large and emerging players in these areas.
Roles will vary depending on which type of firm you go for - at a small regional firm in Leeds, you could be assisting individuals with personal injury, medical negligence, residential property and industrial disease. At a larger regional firm, or a branch of a national law firm, you could be working with national businesses on commercial litigation and corporate law.
There are a number of opportunities to connect with like-minded young lawyers once you move to Leeds. Firstly, it’s a good idea to join the Leeds branch of the Junior Lawyers Division (JLD), to get involved in everything from networking events to socials. Junior Chamber International (JCI) also has a Leeds network - JCI helps young professionals and entrepreneurs to form community links upon moving to a new city, and can provide professional networking opportunities as well as a diverse group of people to socialise with.
Once a thriving mill town at the centre of British industry, Leeds has undergone significant regeneration to become a cosmopolitan hub, boasting a wealth of cultural pursuits.
Leeds offers a lot of freedom of experience: you can opt to live in the bustling city centre, perhaps in a converted mill or warehouse, on Leeds waterfront in a new-build with panoramic views, or if you’d prefer some peace and quiet after a long day of litigation, Leeds has many nearby suburbs which are becoming increasingly popular with its young professionals.
There’s a wealth of Caribbean culture within Leeds, which manifests in the annual Leeds West Indian Carnival, a huge celebration of Caribbean culture and the longest-running authentic parade of its kind in the UK.
While Leeds has all of the metropolitain liveliness expected of a prominent UK city, its piece de resistance has to be its proximity to the sublime Yorkshire countryside. When city life gets overwhelming, you’ll never be far from a weekend break in more peaceful surroundings.
With three universities to stimulate it, the nightlife in Leeds is not something to be missed, so you’ll always have the prospect of letting your hair down at the weekend. If you’d prefer something a little more refined, check out the Grand Theatre and Opera House; both have diverse programmes of entertainment from local and national companies.
With a couple of larger music venues - the O2 Academy and First Direct Arena - serving as tour stops for national and international artists, and the inimitable Leeds Festival occurring every year, Leeds certainly knows how to please the crowds when it comes to music. There are also a series of intimate music venues to accomodate more niche interests, too.
- Visit the Tetley - rather than indulging in a beer, you can instead expect to see up-and-coming contemporary art, with a variety of contemporary exhibitions now gracing the walls of this former brewery.
- Watch the blockbusters of today whilst getting a sense of the past at the Hyde Park Picture House - established in 1914, this arthouse cinema has retained most of its original features.
- Take your tastebuds to wonderland with a trip to The Man Behind the Curtain - a Michelin starred restaurant which features an 11-course, Alice in Wonderland-inspired menu.
- For something less fancy, satisfy your street food cravings at Trinity Kitchen, which hosts a rotation of six new street food vans every eight weeks.
- Develop (or revive) your interest in rugby league by watching the Leeds Rhinos - some say watching a rugby league game is the true initiation into life as an honorary northerner.
Take advantage of the bustling Leeds Station, connecting you to major destinations nationwide such as London, Manchester and Liverpool. You can get further afield by driving 30 minutes to Leeds Bradford International Airport, which will link you to many major European destinations. Leeds also lies close to many of the country’s major motorways, so travelling long distances by car is also possible.
Within the city, congestion levels are low, and you can opt to walk or cycle if you prefer due to the relatively close proximity of key destinations. Alternatively, buses operate within the city, as well as regional train services to wider Yorkshire areas.