Leeds’ Coolest Museums

Photo credit: ‘Leeds’ by Mark Stevenson on flickr (license)

Leeds is one of the UK’s biggest cities, so it’s no surprise it’s home to some of the best museums and cultural sights in the country. The choice of where to visit can be overwhelming, so Citylife is here to show you the coolest places to visit in Leeds.

Leeds City Museum

The best museum Leeds has to offer, the City Museum is free to enter, so there’s no reason not to go. Spread across five floors, permanent exhibitions include ‘Life on Earth’ (800,000 specimens of the natural world), ‘Voices of Asia’ (which celebrates the history of Asian communities in the city) and ‘Ancient Worlds’, which includes a real-life Egyptian Mummy!

The Leeds Story gallery explores the history of the city, but the museum’s other exhibits prove you don’t need to take a trip to London to see some of the best artefacts the UK has to offer.

Photo Credit: ‘The Leeds City Museum’ by bvi4092 on flickr (licence)

Abbey House Museum

During the Victorian Period, the Industrial Revolution changed Britain, turning it from a rich but agricultural nation to the modern country it is today. Abbey House Museum captures these exciting times, recreating shops, pubs and houses from the 19th century. 

Wander through Victorian streets and see how the people of Leeds lived two hundred years ago, and see if you can spot what has changed and what’s stayed the same.

Located near the picturesque ruins of an ancient church, Abbey House is four miles west of the city but it’s well worth the visit, and the 33 and 34 buses will get you there in under half an hour.

Photo Credit: ‘Kirkstall Abbey’ by Tim Green on flickr (licence)

Leeds Industrial Museum

If you’re interested in science and tech, the Leeds Industrial Museum is a must visit. See the machines that made the Industrial Revolution possible, explore early cameras and photography equipment, and watch a movie in a preserved 24-seat 1920s cinema. 

Fashionistas will also want to see the museum, as its Tailoring Gallery is dedicated to the rise of high street fashion through the works of designers such as Joseph Hepworth and Montague Burton.

Photo Credit: ‘Leeds Industrial Museum-04426.jpg’ by AdamKR on flickr (licence)

Royal Armouries Museum

Britain prides itself on its royal past, and in medieval and early modern times knights would fight in jousting tournaments or war with other countries, crusading for control of the Holy Land of Jerusalem. 

The Royal Armouries house over 8,5000 objects, spanning 3,000 years of armor and weapons from Britain and across the globe. Tudor fans especially won’t want to miss this one – the armour of Henry VIII, one of England’s most famous kings, is kept here.

Photo Credit: ‘Knight on Horse Back’ by Stephen Gidley on flickr (licence)

Leeds Art Gallery

Free to visit and in the city centre, Leeds’ premier Art Gallery is the perfect location for a relaxing afternoon trip or an escape from the rain. A collection of 19th century works and 20th century British Art, the government declared the site ‘of national importance’ in 1997, and it’s easy to see why. 

On top of its permanent displays, a regular cycle of temporary exhibitions brings world-class displays of surrealism, woodwork, and anything imaginable to the city.

 If you fancy giving art a go yourself, the museum holds weekly ‘Meet and Make’ sessions, the perfect environment to bring out the artist in you.

Photo Credit: ‘Hirst in Leeds’ by Terry Madeley on flickr (licence)

This post has been written by Matteo Everett

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