Doors open to heritage of art

East Street Arts is opening the doors to three of its buildings as part of the Heritage Open Days weekend.
East Street Arts is opening the doors to three of its buildings as part of the Heritage Open Days weekend.
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People can explore a backpackers’ hostel and an old Irish social club refashioned into artists’ studios during the Heritage Open Days weekend.

For the first time East Street Arts is opening the doors to three of its flagship buildings in the city, free of charge, as part of the nationwide series of events.

The pioneering Leeds-based national arts organisation is inviting visitors to explore three different arts spaces: the Art Hostel, its HQ Patrick Studios and 130 Vicar Lane - a vibrant new space for all things print.

People can discover the fascinating story of the ghost cat at Patrick Studios, the seedy secrets of the Art Hostel and enjoy a red carpet welcome at the site of the former Ritz Cinema: 130 Vicar Lane.

Rich in history, each of the buildings have been updated for modern use and between them now house artists’ studio spaces, an international backpackers’ hostel and Leeds Printmakers’ Co-operative.

Nicola Greenan, director of East Street Arts, said: “We’re really looking forward to opening our spaces to the general public as part of Heritage Open Days. It’s a great opportunity for people to see how we have transformed old buildings; respecting their heritage, but breathing a new creative lease of life into them.”

People can visit Patrick Studios, St Mary’s Lane, and Art Hostel, Kirkgate, from 2pm to 6pm on Friday September 9. Patrick Studios, Art Hostel and 130 Vicar Lane will be open from 2pm to 6pm on September 10 and 11. There is no need to book and staff and volunteers will be on hand to answer questions throughout the weekend.

Heritage Open Days, which is supported locally by Leeds Civic Trust, invites the public to explore local treasures and hidden places free of charge.

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