Thursday, 29 March 2012

The Bear Pit Leeds


The Bear Pit, Cardigan Road, Leeds U.K. was once part of Leeds Zoological and Botanical Gardens which opened in 1840. Victorian visitors could climb the spiral staircases in the stone towers to a viewing platform on which to safely observe the brown bear in the circular pit below.
As well as a bear there were swans, an eagle, a raccoon, a fox, some monkeys and tortoises.

Pic From Google
 The gardens were laid out with ornamental shrubberies and flower beds with winding paths, two ponds with islands and a fountain. A conservatory also displayed exotic and tropical plants.

Despite many events held such as band concerts, exhibitions, fireworks and hot air balloon ascensions. They had financial difficulties and the gardens did not remain open for very long as people could have been put off by the entrance fee of 6d for adults and 3d (Old money) for children, and they were stopped from opening until late afternoon on Sundays so that people were not distracted from visiting local churches and chapels.


Pic From Google

In 1848 the gardens were sold to entrepreneur, Thomas Clapham and he re-sold them for building plots ten years later in 1858.

Now rubble and debris lay around as part of the structure is damaged.

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