Moving to a new area is not always easy. Getting involved can help you feel more at home and is fun! There are opportunities to meet new people, enjoy activities and have your say on your local area.
How to find out what’s going on
In Leeds, there are lots of ways to find out what’s going on including newspapers and newsletters, radio, TV, websites and social media. Here are some you could try.
The Yorkshire Evening Post
The main Leeds newspaper. You can buy it from newsagents and supermarkets. It also has a website.
An independent local TV station.
7 Freeview / 195 Sky / 159 Virgin Media
The BBC’s news and radio programmes and website.
Look North, 1 Freeview / 101 Sky / 101 Virgin Media
BBC Radio Leeds / DAB (Digital) / 92.4 – 95.3 FM
East Leeds FM is a digital/internet radio station based at Chapel FM Arts Centre.
They, “celebrate the stories that we all have, encouraging people to find their own ways of sharing them through conversation, music, comedy, writing, sports and other skills” and broadcast on Tuesday and Friday evenings, and every 2nd and 4th Sunday.
Fever FM serves South Asian communities in the city and broadcasts in English, Urdu / Hindi, Punjabi, and Mirpuri. Their aim is to: “give our listeners a platform to air their views and concerns, while educating, informing, entertaining and inspiring the masses. Fever FM serves all the South Asian communities throughout the city, combating under-representation and exclusion from mainstream media. Our other aim is to bring the whole community together and respect one another by learning from each other.”
Fresh Leeds is a Black Music radio station. Launched in 2002, Fresh plays “all genres of black music in Leeds and Yorkshire and on Thursday 3rd December 2020 Fresh was awarded a D.A.B Licence from Ofcom which made us the first ever legal black music station in Leeds and Yorkshire.”
That Leeds Mag covers North Leeds and encourages members of the local community to submit their ideas and work and activities to be part of the magazine. It is a free monthly magazine delivered to over 20,000 homes and businesses and you can also get copies from Kirby’s of Meanwood, Headingley HEART, English Art Co. and the Welcome In Community Centre LS16. For the price of postage, it can also be delivered to you:
South Leeds Life covers Beeston, Belle Isle, Cottingley, Holbeck, Hunslet, Middleton, Stourton. It runs a news blog and a newspaper which is printed monthly and can be collected from local venues.
West Leeds Dispatch covers Armley, Bramley, Burley, Calverley, Farnley (Old and New), Kirkstall, Farsley, Pudsey, Rodley, Wortley. It runs a website.
You can use social media sites to find out about events, ask people to recommend places to go or services to use, or to buy and sell items. Here are some you could try:
Leeds Place is the biggest Facebook group for people in Leeds. You need to request to join: @leedsplace
Nextdoor is a network that allows you to connect with other people in your local area, share messages, find a tradesperson, organise events, share safety advice, report lost and found belongings, find a babysitter and more.
Groups and Activities
Joining a local group or activity is a really good way to meet other people and feel part of life in Leeds. There are lots of groups that offer opportunities to get involved in your local community, or take part in hobbies and social activities. Many of the activities and venues are free of charge, but sometimes you may have to pay to take part.
Leeds Inspired is an online guide to what’s on in Leeds including music, film and the arts.
Help in Leeds is a website for refugees, asylum seekers and migrants run by LASSN (Leeds Asylum Seekers Support Network). You can use it to find community groups in your local area by searching on Community Groups in the Organisation Category box.
Volunteering and Learning New Skills
Doing volunteering work can be a really good way to get involved in your local community, meet new people and get experience which could even help you find a job. Find out more.
Learning English could also really help you by giving you the skills and confidence to have conversations with other people in your community. Find out more.
Community Hubs and Libraries
Most local areas in Leeds have a Community Hub, which are run by the council, offering lots of services in one place.
In the library section, you can borrow books; enjoy activities and groups including children’s story time; reading groups; photography; history; art and crafts, sport and games and other family activities.
There are also free computers to use, free Wi-Fi and free lessons on how to use a computer or tablet.
The Hubs can also help with looking for work, housing, benefits and council tax, ESOL classes and more.
Children’s centres are a really good place to get support and guidance with caring for your baby or child, but also for looking after your own health and wellbeing, meeting other parents, making friends and getting support. You can attend any children’s centre you like but it is a really good idea to use your local one. Most have their own website, or you can contact any by phone.
You can find your local Children’s Centre on the Family Information Centre website:
Find Your Local Children’s Centre
There are 17 leisure centres in Leeds, offering 12 gyms, 14 swimming pools and 400 sport and exercise classes. There is a small charge for classes, or you can become a member and pay monthly or every year. Find out more on the Active Leeds website.
Find Your Local Leisure Centre
There are 9 museums around Leeds. Leeds City Museum is in the city centre on Millennium Square. Most of them are free of charge, although sometimes you have to pay an entry fee for special exhibitions or to look round if the venue is a historical building. You can find out more here:
There are 9 big parks and more than 60 smaller parks in local communities in Leeds. All are free to visit and are a good place to enjoy beautiful scenery and get exercise. Some of them have activities, events and cafés too. You can find out more here:
Allotments are plots of land that people rent, usually from the council, so they can grow their own fruit and vegetables. There are more than 100 in Leeds. Having an allotment can be a good way to meet people, get exercise and fresh air and provide fresh produce for your family. There is a cost to pay every year, but it is not usually very expensive. Be aware, some allotment sites have long waiting lists.
0113 378 6002 (8am to 4.30pm Mon to Thurs, 8am to 4pm Fri)
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