Life in Leeds

Lucy Flanagan is a Trainee Solicitor based at Shoosmiths’ Leeds office. Here she shares what life is like living in the most populous city in the Yorkshire and Humber region and working in the Leeds office of a national commercial law firm.

In 2017 Shoosmiths opened its Leeds office. The strategic move saw Shoosmiths establish itself in the largest legal and financial centre in the UK outside London. Since opening, the Leeds office has developed a full service offering and with great team growth, based in one of the city’s landmark buildings, Platform.

Life in the office

The office is based in the heart of the city making it well located to provide advice and support to businesses and clients, and perfect for commuting employees, being placed right outside the train station.

The Leeds office has a variety of departments including real estate, corporate, employment and commercial and is continuing to expand in other sectors such as banking and finance.

My current seat is in the construction team and I have worked on various large projects concerning care home developments, service facilities, and significant retail outlets.  I have been given the opportunity to really develop my drafting and research skills and have also enjoyed a good level of client contact. Whilst working in the conditions presented by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has not been without its difficulties, I have had plenty of support and encouragement from my team.

Although office contact has of course been limited in the current circumstances, the facilities provided at the office are excellent. The base at Platform provides a modern and comfortable working environment with great co-working and quiet working spaces. The views from Shoosmiths’ office over the city are beautiful and, in the future, hopefully we can once again socialise on the rooftop terrace as have been enjoyed in previous times.

Life outside the office

The office is also well placed in Leeds for great social and cultural experiences.

There are restaurants in the area for every taste and cuisine. My particular favourites include Zaap Thai Street Food and El Bareto Tapas Bar (in Chapel Allerton). You may have seen Vice and Virtue’s head chef, Jono Hawthorne, feature on the recent series of Masterchef: The Professionals!

In Leeds you can find the refurbished Grand Theatre, home to Opera North. It is also the city of Phoenix Dance Theatre and Northern Ballet whose dance performances are never short of spellbinding. First Direct Arena is the city’s 13,500-seater stadium, a great venue for live music and indoor sports. Key city events include the Leeds West Indian Carnival, Leeds Fest, and Leeds International Film Festival.

Key sights and landmarks in the city include Roundhay and Temple Newsam parks, the Corn Exchange, the Royal Armouries Museum, the Thackray Museum of Medicine, and the Victoria Quarter shopping centre.

Leeds is such a growing and diverse city that is genuinely so fun and exciting to live in. Though lock down has been sombre in this northern hub, I am so excited for a future when Leeds can open and proposer again.

Applications for a summer placement 2021 and training contract 2022/2023 in Leeds are open now on our website.

If you would like to learn more about any of our offices, you can find further advice on how to research law firms in Kathryn’s blog.


This information is for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. It is recommended that specific professional advice is sought before acting on any of the information given. Please contact us for specific advice on your circumstances. © Shoosmiths LLP 2024.



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