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Dagmar Wood is a community outdoor garden and performance space in the Hyde Park area of Leeds. Accessible all year round, it's the perfect place to relax, play or explore the natural habitat.

 

Dagmar Wood has been enjoyed as a community outdoor space since the 1970s for barbecues, picnics, bonfires, and outdoor theatre. Restoration work done in recent years has renovated the sandstone paths and handrails, landscaped the area, and revitalised the space known as ‘Headingley’s best kept secret.’ Dagmar Wood has been custom-built for outdoor theatre, and can also host a variety of leisure or work events.

 

HOW IT BEGAN

It's hard to imagine Dagmar Wood as a former sandstone Quarry, but back in the 18th Century, that's exactly what it was. The typical uneven ground gives you a clue, and several other quarries were located in this area around that time. You may already be familiar with some local street names and the local primary school, Quarry Mount, in Woodhouse, which also hint at the locality's previous incarnation.

100 years ago the house by the highest look out point of the wood was the vicarage for Leeds Parish Church. It used this former quarry site as its gardens and the lodge near the main entrance was home to the private gardener. Stone steps to the rear of the vicarage led straight into what was the turning circle for the garden. It is also said to have housed a water fountain (look for a drain pipe amongst the trees for the approximate location, you should find it at the back of the large willow).