Leicester Square

For details on the adjacent London Underground station, see Leicester Square tube station

Leicester Square (pronounced 'Lester Square') is a pedestrian square in the West End of London, United Kingdom, lying to the west of Charing Cross Road, north of Trafalgar Square and east of Piccadilly Circus. In the centre of the Square is a small park in the centre of which is a statue of William Shakespeare surrounded by dolphins. At each corner gate of the park is a statue: those featured are: Sir Isaac Newton (famous scientist), Sir Joshua Reynolds (the first President of the Royal Academy), John Hunter (a pioneer of surgery), William Hogarth (famous painter). The most recent addition is a statue of Charlie Chaplin (film star).

Leicester Square is the centre of London's cinema land. UK film premieres are typically hosted at one of the four cinemas located directly within the square. Various claims about the cinemas in the Square are made including that it contains the cinema with the largest screen and the cinema with the most number of seats (over 2000).

The square is also the home for 'tkts', formerly known as the Official London Half-Price Theatre Ticket Booth. This booth is jointly owned and operated by various theatre groups. Tickets for theatre performances taking place around the West End that day are sold from the booth for around half-price. The popularity of the booth has given rise to many other booths and stores around the square advertising 'half price' tickets for West End shows. It is claimed that at least some of these booths are fraudulent. Despite having names like 'Official Half-Price Ticket Booth', they are neither official nor do they offer half-price tickets.

The square is home to several nightclubs and is consequently often very busy, particularly on Friday and Saturday evenings. Some claim that the Square has a relatively 'seedy' atmosphere.

Capital Radio moved its headquarters and London studios to Leicester Square in 1997.

Major Cinema'

  • Odeon Leicester Square is largest screen in Europe and was the first digital projector (2002) hosting most premieres with capacity of over 2000.
  • Empire is next largest cinema holding some 1500.
  • Odeon West End contains to screens which can sit 1000 each and is used fo smaller premieres.
  • Warner Brothers Village is a multiplex that host only warner film premieres
Other Cinema
  • Prince Charles Cinema is cheap ticket and cult film cinema famed for its regular showing of Rocky Horror Picture Show and the Sing-a-long Sound of Music.

Major Pubs, Clubs and Restaurants
  • Hippodrome
  • Equinox
  • Zoo Bar
  • Oxygen
  • All Bar One
  • Home (closed) was a seven floor super club launched in 2001 but was closed by police in 2002 because drugs issues.

It is named and built on the site of 'Leicester Fields', which were the fields in front of the Earl of Leicester's mansion. The area was developed in the 1670s.

External Links


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