Leeds City Museum

at Cookridge Street, Leeds, LS2 8BH United Kingdom

Leeds City Museum
Cookridge Street
Leeds LS2 8BH
United Kingdom
Contact Phone
P: +44 (0) 113 224 3732


Leeds City Museum, originally established in 1819, reopened on 13 September 2008 in Leeds, West Yorkshire, England. It is housed in the former Mechanics' Institute built by Cuthbert Brodrick, in Cookridge Street (now Millennium Square), which has been redeveloped to a design by Austin-Smith:Lord architects and Buro Happold engineers. Gallery and exhibit design is provided by Redman Design.Admission to the museum is free of charge. Special exhibitions are hosted alongside a collection of displays from the Leeds Archive.HistoryIn 1819, a museum was established on Park Row by the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society, and in 1821 it opened to the public. In 1921, control of the museum was handed to the Corporation of Leeds which later became Leeds City Council. In 1941, the museum building and artifacts were badly damaged by bombing. In 1965 the museum was closed, and a few exhibits removed to a couple of rooms in the city library in 1966. The oversized Leeds Tiger, the giant moose skeleton and the carved wooden cart took up much of the space. In 1999 the museum went into storage, though researchers and the public could view items by appointment. In 2000, the resource centre at Yeadon opened, under the same appointment-to-view arrangement. In 2001, Leeds City Council bid for National Lottery cash, and in 2004, it was awarded £19.5 million, so in 2005, the Leeds Mechanics' Institute building began to be redesigned as Leeds City Museum, finally to reopen in 2008.

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