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14 Oct 2013

Spooks-ational Settings: The Leeds City Varieties

The Leeds City Varieties
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A very old music hall in the heart of Leeds city centre, built way back in 1865. It's had it's fair share of names, starting as the Thornton's New Music Hall and Fashionable Lounge.  It's also been known as the White Swan City Varieties, Stansfield's Varieties, and the City Palace of Varieties, all before becoming the Leeds City Varieties Leeds locals know and love today.  It's recently had a huge refurbishment, closing back in 2009 and re-opening in 2011.  But that hasn't stopped the ghosties that are said to lurk in this famously spooky theatre.

The most disturbing sighting is that of a hanged man at the balcony, the reason behind his death and identity unknown.  The creepiest experience is the sound of a piano playing late at night.  Perhaps this is linked to the sightings of a man in a bowler hat and old fashioned clothes who is caught standing near a piano on the stage.  Who knows?

Like some theatre actors have a superstition about mentioning the play Macbeth if they are in the production, Leeds City Varieties has its own superstition linked to the ghost of a red headed lady.  Legend says if this apparition is spotted standing near the stage the play that is currently being performed at the time will be a success.  If she's seen outside of the performance area the production will be poorly received.

Tell me about a known haunted location near you!


  1. Imagine that: a ghost people actually WANT to show up, and whose appearance near the stage is considered a good thing! A nice twist. :)

    1. I just love how it makes it sound like the actors could really depend on the ghost appearing to let them know the outcome. I wonder what it could mean if she doesn't appear at all? :)