Notorious Leeds bar Big Lil’s returns to host Beacons Metro Festival

Big Lil's, off The Headrow. Pic: Tim Joy.
Big Lil's, off The Headrow. Pic: Tim Joy.
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NOTORIOUS Leeds drinking den Big Lil’s is set for a facelift, City Buzz can reveal.

The former troublespot at the old Bramley’s Yard, just off The Headrow, earned a fearsome reputation down the years and was eventually shut down in 2004 after a string of violent incidents.

But the venue’s chequered history hasn’t put off organisers of the Beacons Metro Festival, who have stepped in to host a series of events there in October.

The previously-named Beacons Festival was originally held in Skipton but organisers announced in February it would move to the city centre.

City Buzz understands the former Big Lil’s venue will be kept simple and stripped back for the festival and bars will be brought into the space for festivalgoers.

It’s a clever move by the owners as the building boasts 11,000sq ft of space over three floors and two rooftop areas, and if they stay put, they will have their feet well and truly under the table by the time Victoria Gate opens.

It’s always good news when disused buildings that are part of Leeds’s history get a new lease of life. And despite its troubled past, City Buzz hopes to see Big Lil’s go from bruiser to beauty.