Leeds is going to be lit up bigger and better than ever before this November and December
Never mind the official Christmas lights switch-on by whichever X Factor contestant they’ve roped in this year; Leeds is going to be lit up bigger and better than ever before this November and December, as LeedsBID and Welcome to Leeds bring back Christmas in Leeds for its second year.
Following on from last year’s trail of art and light installations, this year’s Christmas in Leeds has enlisted the help of local artists and creatives to give Leeds a bit of festive sparkle in a more original, innovative, and immersive way, encouraging people to create and experience their own “winter moments”
“Christmas is something everybody experiences, regardless of age or anything else. Even if you hate Christmas, it still touches you, we just all experience it in different ways.” says Martin Dickson, Marketing Director of LeedsBID “The outcome of this is to create a range of ways that people can experience and enjoy Christmas in their own way, outside of the usual retail experience”
This year’s installations are based around 6 themed ‘moments’ that sum up Christmas - Wonder, Joy, Surprise, Magic, Beauty, and Escape (if you’re not desperate for an escape after spending days on end with the in-laws, then I want to spend Christmas round yours this year…) - and are intended to guide people around the city and showcase the work of local creatives, as well as landmarks and areas that get overlooked or taken for granted.
Installations range from grandiose yet simple - a light installation illuminating The Queens Hotel, similar to last year’s Trinity Church lights, which are also returning this year - to intimate and immersive, like the Arctic Bazaar at the nationally-renowned Art Hostel on Kirkgate, where Raf Bogan and Helen Russell Brown are creating a family-friendly Icelandic snug complete with curated marketplace, hot chocolate bar, and mobile sauna.
Last year’s Spirit installation which was suspended over Leeds Station’s North Concourse last Winter is coming back, to the entirely different location of Victoria Gate shopping arcade, along with over ten more attractions which will be unveiled in the run-up to Christmas, starting Wednesday 1 November with the illumination of Trinity Church on Boar Lane.
Members of the public will be able to pick up maps with the location of all installations from locations around the city such as hotels and visitor information centres, as well as from LeedsBID ambassadors. A digital version will be available from Christmas.WelcomeToLeeds.co.uk