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Guide Notes for getting to and around the Howard Opera Centre

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Here are some guide notes on how to find the Howard Opera Centre in Leeds

The address is 8 Harrison Street, Leeds, LS1 6PA.

If you are turning down Harrison Street from New Briggate, it’s on your right hand side around ten metres down the road just after the alleyway. Follow the railings keeping them on your left along a slightly ramped upward concrete walkway until you reach the door.

If you are coming up Harrison Street from Vicar Lane it is near the top of the road on your left, around ten metres before you reach New Briggate. There are some metal railings on your left and where these end turn sharp left back on yourself and you are on the slightly ramped upward walkway to the main door.

The first door is automatic and opens towards you so stand back a little. The second door also opens towards you and if you do not have a swipe card this will be opened by the receptionist. You may have to wait a couple of seconds if they are dealing with someone. If you do have a swipe the pad is to the right of the door at waist height.

In the reception area the desk is in front of you slightly over to the right. If you have any questions, there will always be someone there to help you. There are three small square stools over on the right in the corner.

Here are some guide notes for getting around the Howard Opera Centre

The Ground Floor and Lift

From reception if you want to go straight to the main lift to go to the different floors take the door to the right of the reception desk into a small lobby. Turn right and the lift is about four metres straight ahead of you. This is a large lift that can take up to 29 people. There are buttons on the right or left, but there is a covering over the lift and a clear plastic section over the buttons although they do have braille on them. The two columns of buttons start with number 5 at the top on its own. Directly under it is 3 then 1 and B for basement. To the right of button 3 is button 4 with 2 and G for Ground Floor below it followed by a button to open the doors of the lift and another to raise the alarm.

Level 5 takes you to the Gabbertas Gallery which overlooks the Mantle Rehearsal Studio. Level 4 takes you to the Mantle Rehearsal Studio the textile room and office space. Level 3 has more office space including a wellbeing room. Level 2 has more office space. Level 1 takes you to the Costume and Wigs department and the Harewood Studio. G is for reception, the Education Suite and exit. And the Basement is where you will find the Green Room the Music rooms the Linacre Studio and also a shower room next to the toilets.

If you take a right just before the lift, you will find a row of five gender neutral toilets on your left. This is the same layout on all of the floors. Each toilet has a small hand operated lock next to the handle that you pull up and to the left to lock. There is a toilet straight ahead of you with a small button you press at the back just to the right of the toilet at waist height to flush. There is a sink on your right with a lift up tap and a dryer to the right of the sink which is automatic when you raise hands to it.

You can also take the stairs to every floor if you prefer. Follow the wall with the toilets on your left and you will come to a door on your right that takes you to the staircase up to floors 2 3 and 4.

Floor One

Go up two flights of stairs to floor one where there are more toilets through a door on your left and the door to the Costume and Wigs Department and Harewood Studio is on your right. On all of these landings in the stairway there are some freestanding fire extinguishers, sometimes out of the way in a corner and sometimes just up against the wall ahead of you. In the toilets on the left the men’s toilets are straight ahead and the women’s are two metres along to your left. The women’s toilets have three traditional lever flush toilets on the right and three sinks to the left. The taps are automatic with sensors and there is a hand-dryer to the left of the last sink. The men’s toilets have sinks on your left with taps with sensors two urinals on the right and a toilet on sharp right.

If you go through the door opposite the toilets the door on your left takes you into the Costume and Wigs department. If you turn right there is an upward ramped corridor which you follow round to your left then right and then there will be a door on your right into the Harewood Studio.

Floor Two

From the stairwell go up two more flights of stairs and you have more toilets on your left in the same layout and a door straight ahead of you but slightly to your right which takes you into the floor two office space. There is a kitchen immediately around to your right which has a sink on the left cupboards on the right and a fridge just below the sink but just to the left of it. Directly in front of you is an L-shaped shelving section. Over on the right-hand side by the windows and in the middle section are various desks with computers that people can use. Also on the right just beyond the kitchen is Meeting Room 1 which is a long room with a large central table and around 20 chairs and on the far-right wall is a large TV screen.

Over on the left of floor two are four recycling bins, a photocopier and a small seating area where you can take more private calls. In the far-left corner are some higher chairs at a raised desk. To the right of them are two small offices for meetings or private calls.

To the right of these small rooms is a door that takes you out and round a corner to your left to the Beverly Bridge which crosses over Harrison Street and directly into the Howard Assembly Room. This is not always open so check with someone whether the route is open before you take it. And if you cross the floor diagonally to your right or follow along past the desks next to the window you will reach the Film Unit room where the Film team have their desks and editing suite.

Floor Three

Back out onto the stairs and two short flights up again and you are on floor three which has a similar layout to floor two. There is a kitchen immediately around to your right which has a sink on the left cupboards on the right and a fridge just below the sink but just to the left of it. Directly in front of you is an L shaped shelving section. Over on the right-hand side and in the middle section are various desks with computers that people can use. And over on the right past the desks by the windows you will find the music library and librarian.

Just past the kitchen is Meeting Room 2 which is a smallish room with a central table and around 5 chairs.

Floor Four

Back out onto the stairs and two short flights up again, you are on floor four which has a similar layout to floors two and three. There is a kitchen immediately around to your right which has a sink on the left cupboards on the right and a fridge just below the sink but just to the left of it. Directly in front of you is an L shaped shelving section. Over on the right-hand side and in the middle section are various desks with computers that people can use.

Just past the kitchen is Meeting Room 3 which is a medium sized room with a central table and 12 chairs and a large screen on the wall on the right at the far end.

Lift access to floors two three and four

If you take the lift up to floors two and three you come out past a long row of lockers on either side with wooden ones on the left and metal on the right which you can use to store bags and equipment. You can get a key from reception. After the lockers go round to your left and down a short corridor and then you arrive onto the floor with the meeting room on your right and the kitchen on your left.

On floor four as you exit the lift the door into the Mantle Music Studio is on your right. The textile room is straight ahead and to your left is a corridor with the five gender neutral toilets leading to a door into the office space. Follow the wall opposite the toilets to find a door on your right back out onto the stairwell and just beyond that is an accessible toilet.

Education Suite

From the reception area take the door on your sharp right. You will need a swipe card to get through or the person on reception can open it for you. After going through the door you turn right and then you face a long corridor. First on your left is the kitchen and opposite a small office. Then further along on your left are some double doors that you pull towards you which open into the Brammal Studio. This is a large room with wood panelling and has a grand piano in it. There is a door on the left-hand wall that takes you in to three toilets including an accessible toilet.

Back out to the corridor and opposite The Brammal Studio on the right is a long thinner room with windows to the outside called the Holbeck Teaching Room which usually has a few chairs and a music stand or two.

Basement

At the end of the corridor there is a door which you go through and down some stairs to your right to end up at two fire doors which take you out onto Harrison Street which you would use in a fire drill. However if you go through the door straight ahead and down some stairs with rails either side you arrive in the basement. Go straight ahead and through another door and you are in the Green Room where there are tea and coffee making facilities in the kitchen area in the far-left corner. There are sofas on your left and benches and tables on your right. To the right of the benches there are some double doors which bring you out into a corridor where you can find the three music practice rooms all with piano a music stand and chairs.

If you go left here you will arrive back at the main lift with it on your right which you can then take back up to the ground floor.

Audio guide notes

How to find the Howard Opera Centre in Leeds – 0:05
The Ground Floor and Lift – 1:32
Floor One – 3:48
Floor Two – 4:57
Floor Three – 6:35
Floor Four – 7:17
Lift access to floors two three and four – 7:58
Education Suite – 8:50
Basement – 9:42

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