exclusive: leeds united are back with pop-up shop in trinity leedsBack
A new pop-up store in Trinity Leeds will be opening on August 1st with the message: Leeds United are Back in Leeds City Centre.
The shop will see United return to town for the first time since January 2007, when the club’s Albion Street shop and ticket office closed so the club could concentrate on its Elland Road superstore.
The subsequent six year absence will end two days before Leeds kick off their new Championship season against Brighton at Elland Road, when the new shop opens at the Trinity Street entrance near Marks & Spencers and iconic club sponsors from the eighties, Burton. The club and Trinity Leeds are planning a special event for launch day, with the store set to stay open until August 31st.
Fans will be able to buy the club’s new home and away kits, made by Macron, alongside special selections from United’s popular retro collection. Some exclusive new products will only be available from the Trinity Leeds shop, which will feature a video screen replaying great Leeds United moments.
The pop-up is being produced in collaboration with local brand Made in Leeds, whose own shop was part of Trinity Leeds’ successful opening in March this year. Made in Leeds, whose t-shirts have been a hit across the city this summer, will also be launching an exclusive new product for the Leeds United shop. Graphic design for the store has been produced by local agency Black Box Studio.
Leeds United Retail Director Dan Jeffery said, “We are delighted to get back into the city centre with a pop-up shop in the exciting new Trinity Leeds. The timing could not be any better as we open two days before the start of the season."
Paul Smith, Marketing Manager at Trinity Leeds added, “It’s great to see Leeds United returning to the city. Pop-up culture is all the rage at the moment and it’s exciting that we can play a part in bringing the LUFC brand to fans in a truly unique way.”
Since the Albion Street shop closed in 2007, many Leeds fans have been frustrated by not being able to buy shirts in the city centre, while replica kits for rival clubs have always been widely available. As United have struggled to climb back up through the divisions, various red and blue shirts of teams unnameable have seemed more visible in town than the classic white shirts of Leeds.
The lack of a club shop seemed to reflect a distance between Leeds United and the city which was allowed to grow wider under the chairmanship of Ken Bates. Recent moves by the new owners to lower ticket prices, take advertising spaces around town, and now to open the new pop-up store seem aimed at reintegrating the club and the people of Leeds.
Trinity Leeds, through which more than a million shoppers come and go every month, ought to be the perfect location for the club to regain visibility in the centre of Leeds, helping the club connect with supporters old and new. It’s to be expected that if the pop-up store does well, United will explore possibilities for a more permanent home in the city. Football merchandise has come a long way since the days when Jack Charlton had a second job running the souvenir shop at Elland Road, and while the new shop might have a retro theme, a successful store in Leeds city centre ought to be an essential part of a modern Leeds United.
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