First Bus partners with Leeds Kirkgate Market to help trade in greener shopping and leisure

  • Community Space to relax with family and friends
  • Films show off variety of traders and stallholders

First Bus has teamed up with Leeds Kirkgate Market in a partnership to showcase the leisure, retail and community attractions at the venue, which has been a landmark of central Leeds for over 160 years and is currently underway with a further programme of interior development.

Among the new features will be a specially-created Community Space for relaxing during a visit to the market. First Bus has commissioned artists from Leeds Street Gallery to produce a giant design to cover a floor area of more than 120 square metres. This will include a ‘journey’ around famous locations in the city centre as part of a play area for families along with tables and seating.

First Bus is also discussing plans with the management team of Leeds Kirkgate Market for a series of events and promotions through the coming year to highlight different product sectors and traders. Short films have been made of some of the 140 businesses based in the Grade 1 building, which dates from 1857 and it the biggest covered market in Europe.

It’s part of a joint aim to encourage greener ways to go shopping and enjoy leisure and social time.

Cllr Jonathan Pryor, Deputy Leader of the Council and Executive Member for Economy, Culture and Education said: “We are looking forward to working in partnership with First Bus on showcasing our traders and encouraging customers to visit and shop at the market in a more sustainable way. 

“The new Community Space will be a welcoming spot where families can come to catch up, stop for a rest or eat from one of our fantastic street food options.”

John Godfrey, Head of Marketing for First Bus in West Yorkshire, said: “Leeds Kirkgate Market is an iconic place with a bewildering choice of unique shopping and international cuisine. This makes it a must-see destination.

“We will be working with the team to encourage anyone, whether they’re visiting Leeds or live and work in the city, to discover what’s inside and enjoy special events. Taking the bus is not only a more sustainable way to get there it also helps to reduce congestion, which is a benefit to all road users.

“We’re delighted to begin this partnership with the market and build on our shared goal of helping to reduce the carbon footprint of customers.”

Leeds Street Gallery is beginning work on the floor ‘mural’ with a team of 3 working at weekends to complete the design for the Community Space, which is expected to be ready by the end of November.

Jack from Leeds Street Gallery said: People often think we just promote the Graffiti form of street art, but what we do is simply about adding colour to the city and promoting the wealth of homegrown artists. We were delighted to be given the opportunity to paint another prominent section of the historic Leeds Kirkgate Market for First Bus, this time with a challenging floor mural!”

Photo captions: Cllr Jonathan Pryor shows off a scale picture of the floor design with (left) Jack Ellis of Leeds Street Gallery and John Godfrey.



Notes to editors

About Leeds Kirkgate Market

One of the largest indoor markets in Europe, Kirkgate is a shopper’s paradise from fresh food, drink and fashion to jewellery, flowers, hardware and haberdashery.  At the heart of the Leeds retail scene since 1857, Leeds Kirkgate Market is home to some of the most characterful traders in the city, with businesses spanning generations and representing a wide range of nationalities. 

Leeds Kirkgate Market is open Monday to Saturday 8 to 5.30pm. 

Leeds Kirkgate Market, Vicar Lane, Leeds City Centre LS2 7HY, telephone: 0113 378 1950,

About Leeds Street Gallery

Leeds Street Gallery is a community organisation focused on bringing more colour to the streets of Leeds. Leeds Street Gallery was instrumental in establishing a network of over 9 legal art walls in Leeds, allowing both established artists and those wanting to jump into the world a street art, places to practise. They also curate and install community murals and have worked with organisations such as Leeds Rhinos, Virgin Media, Josh Warrington, 11 Degrees and now First Bus. They also provide street art workshops to schoolchildren and youth groups in Leeds.