1st White Cloth Hall

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Coordinates: 53°47′44″N 1°32′26″W / 53.79548°N 1.540446°W / 53.79548; -1.540446

The derelict 1st White Cloth Hall seen in July 2014

The 1st White Cloth Hall is a Grade II* listed building on Kirkgate, in the city centre of Leeds in West Yorkshire, England.[1]


Originally named The White Cloth Hall, it was opened in 1711 as a response to the building of a covered cloth hall by the merchants of Wakefield in 1710, built in order to entice traders away from Leeds.[2] So the cloth hall for the sale of white (undyed) cloth was built on Kirkgate on a site provided by Lord Irvine of Temple Newsam with £1,000 given by merchants and tradesmen. It was 'built upon Pillars and Arches in the form of an Exchange, with a Quadrangular Court within'.[3]


Despite its importance to the industrial heritage of Leeds and to the industrial revolution in general, the first White Cloth Hall in Kirkgate has stood growing increasingly derelict for many years surrounded by scaffolding and safety hoardings. The Amusement Arcade in its eastern wing still operates but the rest of the building is getting close to state of collapse and is a health and safety hazard.[3]

A series of meetings with the City Council Planning Officers, the building owner Emco, and English Heritage, concluded that the western and southern sections of the building must be demolished.

In March 2018, Leeds City Council granted Rushbond Group permission to restore the building. Rushbond Group are local property developers who bought the building over a year earlier.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Leeds First White Cloth Hall: public consulted on revamp". BBC. British Broadcasting Corporation. 22 April 2011. Retrieved 12 November 2014.
  2. ^ Iqbal, Aisha (27 June 2014). "Historic Leeds trading hub all set for a new lease of life". Yorkshire Evening Post. Yorkshire Post Newspapers. Retrieved 12 November 2014.
  3. ^ a b "First Cloth Hall (465922)" (PDF). Leeds Civic Trust. Leeds Civic Trust. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 March 2016. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  4. ^ https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-leeds-43334462

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