A Fresher’s guide to Leeds
Leeds is a diverse city to study in and so the University similarly has a breadth that is difficult to find anywhere else. It’s a widespread campus and it can sometimes be hard to navigate, let alone find the quiet spots for studying and the best coffee shops.
Fruity is without a doubt one of the best nights out in Leeds. As it’s in the lower rooms of the union it’s not hard to find, unlike some of the other clubs, and you won’t be wandering around the streets of Leeds at three in the morning looking for your Uber. It’s a little cheesy and full of pop artists you listened to as a kid, like Steps and S Club 7, but with enough alcohol and the right people it’s a night to remember. Sticky Feet is also renowned as a great night with good music.
Many might expect Leeds to have a big indie scene, and it does, but this isn’t always reflected in the clubs that you go to. A night out to Mission is always a decent trip – the drinks are good and so is the music. The only sore point would be that it can sometimes be a little difficult to find and then to find your way back home from. It’s in the middle of town though, so you can always stop for twenty chicken nuggets on the way home.
If ever in any doubt head to the union. It’s right in the centre of campus and once you know where it is you’ll find it hard to be lost again. While not all of the student services are located in the union, there is always helpful staff ready to advise you or to point you in the right direction. Whether you’re having trouble with your landlord, you’re struggling with a module or you’re not coping with your mental health – it’s the hub of help for students.
They’ll also be able to point you in the direction of the student medical practice, which can be a little difficult to find if you don’t know where it is. You can make same-day appointments if needs be, and their staff are considerate.
Choosing where to live can often be a stressful time, especially when you’re moving into the second year and you have no idea what to look for in a decent house. In Leeds, the most common areas to live are either Headingly or Hyde Park. It should be considered, however, that while student areas have a bit of a reputation as places of high crime, Hyde Park is one of the worst in the entire country. Just be wary that if you leave your window open even a crack because you forgot to close it before leaving for Fruity, you’ll more often than not return to a ransacked house.
Landlords are also a very important consideration. The university union has a website called Unipol where it lists all of the properties and landlords who meet the minimum requirements – you’d be surprised by how many don’t in Leeds. Always check Unipol before signing a contract, and when in doubt take it into the union for someone to read over who actually understands what some of the terminologies mean. Even if they are on Unipol, though, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your tenancy will be problem-free.
Leeds is a great city to be a student in, so enjoy the next three years – you’ll love them!