Once a part of everyday life in Leeds, these three hidden spaces are now gathering dust…
There’s nothing more intriguing than a slice of history you’ll never see – and these three all fall into that category. They’re tucked away, boarded up and forgotten, but they still exist in the hidden recesses of the city. Boy would we like to get inside and see what they look like now. You probably would too…
La Scala Theatre
La Scala Theatre opened back in 1922, in the building that sits on the corner of Lands Lane and Albion Street. A stunning movie theatre with a huge auditorium, it has sat unused for over 50 years, tucked away within the bowels of a building we see every day. In the past, it was a rather unusual addition to Miss Selfridges’ storage area, but now Easy Hotel have plans to take on the space – hopefully the old theatre won’t be lost to the city forever.
La Scala Theatre, Lands Lane, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6LB.
Leeds Train Station
The current station was actually built on top of another, earlier station. The original was built in 1850 across the River Aire, before Leeds New Station opened in 1869. The two stations were eventually brought together, but to this day, parts of the old station still exist below. Within the huge stone arches lie forgotten remnants of its past, including a postroom, a clocking-in room and toilets with working plumbing. The tunnels connect to the Dark Arches, but after all these years, they’re no longer safe to walk – which is why we’ll probably never see the secret world hidden beneath the station.
Leeds Train Station, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 4JB.
Merrion Centre Cinema
From 1964 until 1977, the cinema in the Merrion Centre was the place to be, but as you’ve probably noticed, it’s no longer there. The projectors are gone and the seats too, but everything else remains untouched – although the old entrance has since been replaced by the wall of cash machines next to Home Bargains. There are rumours that it will one day be opened to the public, but nothing has been confirmed yet – we live in hope.
Merrion Centre Cinema, Merrion Centre, Merrion Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 8NG.Feature image copyright Tim Green licensed for commercial use under creative commons.