Jamyang Buddhist Centre – a place of calm in the city

Sometimes taking a moment away from the fast pace and stresses of life can really help clear your mind and take away some of the pressure especially when you’re with a group of like-minded people.

The Jamyang Buddhist Centre Leeds (JBCL) in Holbeck has the facilities and space to do this through their programme of both Buddhist and secular activities including talks, workshops and classes.

JBCL has been running for twenty years and was originally housed in the city centre. They have recently found a new home in Holbeck, which has now been open for three months and already held a number of classes and events.

Kerry Prest, the Director of JBCL and his team are located in the old Clyde Works building, which used to be a textile mill. It was built in 1935, the same year that the Dalai Lama’s was born, which feels very fitting considering the new centre now held within its walls. There is ample space in the premises with the ground floor already fully renovated and operational. It contains small offices and a large meditation hall which serves various purposes including a meeting space.

The centre currently also houses a counselling service and mindfulness coach who has created a welcoming and inclusive space to work in. Alongside this the centre offers outreach into the local community.

Kerry explained that Buddhist classes and talks are available for people of the faith and those interested in learning more about Tibetan Buddhism, however there are also activities aimed at those of other faiths or no faith. Tai Chi, Yoga, express meditation and mindfulness sessions are available and offer a welcome break from the normal routine so come along and give one of these classes a go!

The centre isn’t complete yet however, as there is ample space in the attic for the centre to expand into. This will be converted into a comprehensive library and additional meditation hall to serve the centre and they are keen to have other groups use the remaining space. Kerry is confident that within 6 months to a year the attic will be renovated and in use, but for now there is a lot of planning and work to be done.

During my visit I met many people who keep the centre running and create the welcoming atmosphere, Annette is the house manager and Jay heads up the café. If you are passing he would love to make you a cup of tea or coffee. Alongside the café there is charity shop which is currently accepting donations.

If you would like to know more drop into the centre, or check out their website which lists all upcoming events: jamyangleeds.co.uk.

There are many interesting sessions coming up including a curry and movie night which is to be held on 8 June. There are also regular Beginners Mediatation classes.

JBCL are also currently looking for volunteers to help run the café and charity shop or even to be a welcoming face at the reception desk, if you have any time to dedicate please get in touch with Kerry on (0113) 345 2626.