Leeds has a vibrant history of beer making, pouring and drinking. Starting at its industrial roots and transitioning through household names like Tetley through to the renaissance of micro brewing and the rise of much loved makers like Northern Monk and Kirkstall Brewery, Leeds has an incredible beer culture. What better way to discover its beginnings than with a heritage pub and brewery tour.
Starting at the site of the old Tetley brewery (now turned art gallery), you’ll make your way into The Adelphi, a late-Victorian cultural cornerstone of Leeds’ history through to the Duck and Drake. Although the Duck and Drake is now better known for its hard rock live music scene this pre Victorian pub is older than most buildings in the city centre and holds some excellent stories.
From here you’ll venture to the White Swan, a venue linked with one of the city’s oldest music halls the City Varieties. To arrive at this venue though you’ll take a brief detour past some of the city’s ‘ghost pubs’, the places where former drinking spots used to sit and which have now been left derelict, been developed or demolished out of existence. Traces of their past however, can still be seen in the architecture of what remains.
The tour finishes at probably the most famous of Leeds’ heritage pubs, Whitelocks Ale House. Famously founded in 1715 and saturated in stories of the building’s past, the venue is a map of the city centre’s cultural history, warts and all. For those who want to line their stomachs after an afternoon of beer touring we personally recommend a Whitelocks pie, their not fancy, but their a cultural experience in themselves.
At each heritage pub a half pint is included in the ticket price, it is also advised that all attendees read the tour guidelines before attending for everyone to have the best experience possible.
Over the course of the afternoon you’ll span three hundred years of history with drinks, stories, activities and a hefty amount of local history. This is a culturally infused and historically informed pub crawl with more heart than a Yorkshire man opening up emotionally for the first time in 30 years.