Leeds is letting culture loose in 2023

Big news! For one whole year (all 365 days, 12 months, and 500,000 minutes of it), Leeds is letting culture loose. Expect unbelievable community projects, life-changing experiences, world-class events and a city full of vibrancy and excitement!

2023 will be a transformational year for Leeds. With 12 signature events & a multitude of creative experiences planned, Leeds is going to be vibrant, exciting and the place to be! 

Why is Leeds letting culture loose?

Well, it all started back in 2015, when Leeds started a bid to enter the European Capital of Culture for 2023. Due to Brexit, and the UK leaving the EU, this bid was pulled, meaning the UK couldn’t technically be named as a European Capital of Culture (boo).

However, the bid continued despite this news. Over the last 4-5 years, and especially the last 24 months the community of Leeds, local businesses and Leeds City Council have rallied to make sure Leeds can go ahead with the plans that were already in motion.


Leeds 2023 has its own website in which you can find out more information, and you can also watch the unbelievable one year to go campaign in which David Nelmes, World Parkour Champion from Leeds, stares as the main character throughout the video!

What does it mean to be a ‘European Capital of culture’

Never heard of the capital of culture? Don’t worry, we’ve got it covered. A European Capital of Culture is a city designated by the European Union (EU) for a period of one calendar year. During the 12 months nomination, the city will organise and showcase a series of cultural events which are strongly focused on unity among European countries.

Being named the capital of culture is also a fantastic opportunity for the city to generate considerable cultural, social and economic benefits. The visibility and profile of the chosen city can also explode on an international scale, with more international traveler’s and a bigger spotlight than ever before.

*Remember Leeds will not be officially awarded the European Capital of Culture, but the cities efforts and vision remains focused on delivering a culturally rewarding calendar year*

How will this impact my time living in Leeds?

Leeds 2023 will benefit everyone, it’s a chance for everybody to immerse themselves in the community and find out what culture means to them. By being in Leeds during the calendar year of 2023, you will be experiencing a life-changing and unique visual representation of how important culture is to everybody.

During the 12-months, Leeds will see a host of impactful and exciting events, experiences and community inspiration. Across art, dance, theater, sport, food, architecture and music, Leeds will shine bright as one community coming together to celebrate culture.

So, if you’re already a student-athlete who is joining us In Fall 22, or you’re currently weighing up your options for choosing which college soccer program you want to attend, this definitely adds towards why choosing RIASA could be the best decision of your life.

What’s student life like in Leeds?

We could go on forever about how amazing Leeds is for student living, but we would prefer you to watch our detailed city guide so you can decide for yourself. We also have some great interviews with previous RIASA students who describe what it’s like to live, study and compete at our soccer academy (coming from the people who have already done the journey)!

So now that you know that Leeds is the place to be, it’s time to start thinking about taking your soccer development seriously. With our recent announcement, the highly qualified UEFA A & Pro Licensed Coaches, and RIASA’s ethos around making sure you reach your maximum playing potential, there isn’t a better soccer programme that can help you break into the sporting industry.

Did we mention that with our academic partner Richmond, The American University In London, you will also be working towards earning a dual accredited US/UK degree in International sports Management when you choose to play your college soccer at RIASA.

Men’s Undergraduate Soccer Programme

Women’s Undergraduate Soccer programme