Living as an international student in Leeds

There are many reasons why international students are drawn to the UK – the scenery is beautiful, the population is multicultural, and our education system is recognised globally for its prestige and unparalleled quality controls.

The environment you will be entering is ideal for aspiring musicians – after all, the UK is known for its creativity. Leeds’ contributions to the British cultural scene include its festivals, performing arts institutions, and its renowned output of local musicians like John Newman, Soft Cell, The Kaiser Chiefs and Chantel McGregor.

Below is a point by point guide to the city you’ll be calling home during your studies.

A city of education

Leeds has a long-standing reputation as an educational hub, and students are a respected and celebrated part of the city's culture. The city is well-suited to student life in terms of leisure, study and accommodation. The suburb of Headingley is a popular location, though student accommodation is readily available throughout central and suburban Leeds.

A green city

Leeds contains lots of parks including Temple Newsam and the vast Roundhay Park, whilst Millennium Square and Victoria Gardens are just some of the open spaces in the city centre. Leeds is situated a short distance from the North York Moors and the Bronte sisters’ home village of Howarth. Exploring the countryside is highly recommended, and nearby towns like Harrogate, Ilkley and Saltaire are beautiful as well as historic.

A cultural city

Leeds is one of only two cities in the UK to have its own opera and ballet companies, Opera North and Northern Ballet. As well as the Grand Theatre and City Varieties, it is home to the UK’s largest regional production theatre, the West Yorkshire Playhouse. Leeds is made all the more vibrant as the host of numerous festivals, including the Leeds International Pianoforte Competition, Leeds International Film Festival and the Leeds Festival, which features some of the biggest names in rock and indie music.

A great place to shop

Leeds is one of the best shopping destinations in northern England and the city centre contains a large number of retail spaces, including the up-market Victoria Quarter and brand new Trinity Leeds. Just a short distance away, the Corn Exchange is home to a range of creative and independent retailers, whilst its neighbour Leeds City Market is the largest covered market in Europe.

A friendly city

No matter where you are from, you will find that British life in some ways resembles and in some ways differs from your home country's society and customs. One thing you may notice is the value we place on open-mindedness and humour – in fact, British people like to make a joke of most situations, which is a sign of friendliness. It should also be remembered that Britain is a proud melting pot and that rather than follwoing a standard cultural path here, you can choose whichever cuisines, religions, events or philiosophies interest you.


International enquiries
+44 (0)113 222 3457 |

+44 (0)113 222 3514 |

International welfare
+44 (0)113 222 3514 |

Scholarships and fee status
+44 (0)113 222 3419 |

SU and societies
+44 (0)113 222 3507 |

Your conservatoire

Undergraduate study

We have a number of music degrees at undergraduate level – find out about our Foundation, BA, combined and top-up degrees

What's On

Our packed concert season welcomes everyone from global superstars to up-and-coming talents – and Leeds College of Music students are always at the heart of the programme

Short Courses

Keen on developing your skills on an instrument – or your voice? Check out our short courses on offer