Leeds Dock

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UKREiiF is coming to town – expect a thriving celebration of everything that’s great in and around Leeds.

The UK’s Real Estate Investment and Infrastructure Forum returns to Leeds this May, setting up camp at Leeds Dock. It’s a fantastic opportunity for the city, bringing thousands of key business leaders and investors to the region, along with a healthy boost to the economy. But it’s not all work and no play – there’s plenty going on outside of the conference, including an interactive activity hub at Leeds Corn Exchange and plenty of fringe events. Here’s what to expect…

The event will welcome investors from across the UK


Credit: UKREiiF

UKREiiF connects people, places and businesses to accelerate and unlock transformational investment. Kicking off on Tuesday 16th May 2023, the national event will welcome over 6,000 delegates to the city, alongside 250+ local authorities, 500+ speakers and no less than 750 investors. With the likes of Leeds City Council, West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Bradford Council all in attendance, it’s set to be an inspirational meeting of minds.

Not only does the three-day event provide ample opportunity to network with key industry figures, it also facilitates the progression of highly-lucrative projects across the nation. Many a city vied for the chance to host the event, but Leeds secured the conference for the second year in a row. With 2022’s event generating £5.5 million for the city’s economy and the number of delegates almost doubling this year, it’s sure to bring a welcome boost to the region.

Everyone can come together to celebrate the city’s wins

Corn Exchange

Credit: Jo Ritchie

Head down to the Corn Exchange between Tuesday 16th and Thursday 18th May 2023 and you’ll be able to discover all the exciting things going on in and around the city, thanks to an interactive activity hub hosted by Welcome to Leeds. Split across seven pillars – culture, food, events, families, retail, architecture and sport – this public-facing exhibition will be fun and immersive, designed to engage and inspire. You might even be able to spot a bear!

Alongside a big push on the Leeds International Festival of Ideas, which returns this year at a new home at Leeds Playhouse, there will be live performances throughout the event, as well as the chance to test your reactions and hand-eye coordination with a BATAK machine. The hub is open to the public and completely free to attend, running for the duration of the festival. Simply visit the Corn Exchange and look out for the Welcome to Leeds pop-up – you won’t miss it.

Get involved in fringe events


Credit: UKREiiF

Away from the main conference, there are over 75 fringe events popping up around the city – and you could be there. The event launches in style on Monday 15th May 2023 at the VIP Pre-Party at Angelica, where you can sip experimental cocktails, dig into delicious canapés and check out some of the best views the city has to offer. The Women in Real Estate Brunch is sure to be a popular event, landing at Tattu on Wednesday 17th May 2023.

More highlights include Pick Everard’s Craft Beer Tasting & Drinks event at Northern Monk, which combines networking with a celebration of local brews, while Addleshaw Goddard’s Drinks Reception at Ciao Bella offers the chance to connect with key legal figures. For a radical look at how to tackle the climate crisis, head to Ginger Works on Wednesday 17th May. Alongside an interactive pub-style quiz you’ll also hear from a yet-to-be-revealed VIP speaker.

A big Leeds welcome

Leeds skyline

© Copyright Leeds-List 2023

“It’s fantastic that we have over 6000 delegates descending on our city for the week of UKREiiF, so we want to give all them all a warm welcome,” Andrew Cooper, Chief Executive of LeedsBID told us. “That’s why we’ve created the Welcome to Leeds Hub that’s happening in the Corn Exchange. It will be there all week for delegates who are interested in what’s happening in Leeds because there’s a real buzz.”

“We’re seeing real change and transformation taking place in Leeds, from the high street to the cranes that are in the sky, and the development that’s happening on the Southbank. It’s exciting to be able to show the delegates how the city is working together collaboratively to increase its profile and to tell its story.” You can join Andrew for the inspirational Welcome to Leeds Hub launch on Monday evening.

Cover image credit: Gary Butterfield