University Of Leeds Alumni

Discover the notable alumni of University Of Leeds. The list includes people like Emma Mackey, Mark Knopfler, Keir Starmer, Mark Gatiss & Alice Levine. This list of notable alumni is loosely sorted by popularity and has people from different domains of life, such as film & theater personalities, musicians, writers, singers and critics & connoisseurs etc.
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 1 
Mark Knopfler
(Former Lead Guitarist, Singer and Songwriter of the Rock Band 'Dire Straits')
Mark Knopfler
5
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: August 12, 1949
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Glasgow, Scotland

Best known as the lead guitarist and singer of the popular rock band Dire Straits, Mark Knopfler is one of Britain’s most celebrated guitar icons. Known for hits such as Sultans of Swing, he and his band also released Brothers in Arms, one of the best-selling albums of all time.

 2 
Emma Mackey
(French-British Actress Best Known for Her Role as ‘Maeve Wiley’ in the TV Series ‘Sex Education’)
Emma Mackey
77
Birthdate: January 4, 1996
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Le Mans, France

French-British actor Emma Mackey is best known for her portrayal of Maeve Wiley in the Netflix series Sex Education. Some of her upcoming projects include Emily Brontë’s biopic and the thriller Death on the Nile. She has also appeared in the TV projects Badger Lane and Summit Fever.

 3 
Holliday Grainger
14
Birthdate: March 27, 1988
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Didsbury, Manchester, England

After starting her career as a child actress, Holliday Grainger went on to establish herself as a prominent  actress in the British TV and film industry. Also a well-known philanthropist, Holliday Grainger was featured in a film titled Home, which was intended to help enhance awareness of the global refugee crisis.

 4 
Jenny Ryan
(Television personality)
Jenny Ryan
4
Birthdate: April 2, 1982
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Bolton, Lancashire, England, UK
Height: 5'7" (170 cm)
 5 
Leslie Cheung
(Hong Kong Singer and Actor)
Leslie Cheung
5
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: September 12, 1956
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Kowloon, Hong Kong
Died: April 1, 2003

Cantopop pioneer Leslie Cheung was born to a tailor who worked for celebrities such as Alfred Hitchcock. Educated in the U.K., he later began a singing career in Hong Kong and then moved to Canada. After an illustrious 26-year career, he committed suicide by jumping from the Mandarin Oriental hotel.

 6 
Corinne Bailey Rae
(Singer-Songwriter Best Known for Her 2006 Single ‘Put Your Records On')
Corinne Bailey Rae
8
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: February 26, 1979
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Leeds, England
Height: 5'3" (160 cm)
 7 
Dennis Prager
(Talk Show Host)
Dennis Prager
7
Birthdate: August 2, 1948
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Brooklyn, New York, United States
Height: 6'4" (193 cm)
 8 
Cressida Bonas
(Actress)
Cressida Bonas
4
Listed In: Fashion
Birthdate: February 18, 1989
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Winchester, Hampshire, England
Height: 5'8" (173 cm)
 9 
Stephen Jay Gould
(Paleontologist and Evolutionary Biologist Known for His 'Theory of Punctuated Equilibrium' & Book ‘The Mismeasure of Man’)
Stephen Jay Gould
2
Birthdate: September 10, 1941
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Bayside, New York, United States
Died: May 20, 2002

Stephen Jay Gould was an American evolutionary biologist, paleontologist, and historian of science. One of the most widely read and influential authors of popular science, Gould was named a Living Legend in April 2000 by the US Library of Congress. He is also counted among the most frequently cited scientists, as far as evolutionary theory is concerned.

 10 
Alice Levine
(Presenter)
Alice Levine
3
Birthdate: July 8, 1986
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Nottingham
 11 
Jamie Laing
(English TV Personality, Investor and Founder of ‘Candy Kittens’ Known for His TV Series ‘Made in Chelsea’)
Jamie Laing
5
Birthdate: November 3, 1988
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Oxford, England, United Kingdom

Jamie Laing is an English entrepreneur and television personality. He is credited with founding Candy Kittens, a confectionery company. Apart from appearing in reality television series, such as Made in Chelsea, Jamie Laing also hosts a couple of podcasts. Also renowned for his dancing skills, Laing won the runner-up trophy in the 18th series of Strictly Come Dancing in 2020.

 12 
Dominic Holland
(Comedian)
Dominic Holland
2
Birthdate: May 6, 1967
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: London, England
Height: 5'6" (168 cm)
 13 
David Kelly
(Welsh Scientist and Authority on Biological Warfare)
David Kelly
4
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: May 14, 1944
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Llwynypia, Glamorgan, Wales
Died: July 17, 2003
 14 
Linda Bassett
(Actress)
Linda Bassett
2
Birthdate: February 4, 1950
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Pluckley, Kent, England, UK
 15 
Bill Bruford
(Drummer)
Bill Bruford
1
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: May 17, 1949
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Sevenoaks, England
 16 
Natasia Demetriou
(Comedian)
Natasia Demetriou
6
Birthdate: 1989 AD
Birthplace: London Borough of Camden, London, United Kingdom
 17 
Dan Smith
(English Singer-Songwriter and the Lead Singer of 'Bastille')
Dan Smith
2
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: July 14, 1986
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: London, United Kingdom

The lead vocalist of English pop-rock band Bastille, singer-songwriter Dan Smith gained international fame with his chartbusting 2013 track Pompeii. He has also released hits such as Happier and Good Grief. He has been associated with various charitable initiatives and had also formed a distraction club during the COVID-19 lockdown.

 18 
Ken Robinson
(Author and Speaker Best Known for Preaching Creativity in Teaching)
Ken Robinson
3
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: March 4, 1950
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Liverpool, England
Died: August 21, 2020

Ken Robinson was a British author and speaker. An influential figure, Robinson served as an international advisor to several non-profits, education and arts bodies, and government. From 1989 to 2001, he served as a professor at the University of Warwick. Born into a working class family from Liverpool, Robinson went on to win many honors including the George Peabody Medal.

 19 
Ngugi wa Thiong'o
(Writer and Academic who writes primarily in Gikuyu)
Ngugi wa Thiong'o
5
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: January 5, 1938
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Kamiriithu, Kenya
 20 
Jack Straw
(British Politician Who Served as Home Secretary and Foreign Secretary Under Prime Minister Tony Blair)
Jack Straw
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: August 3, 1946
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Buckhurst Hill, Essex, England

Jack Straw is an English politician who served in the Cabinet under the governments of Gordon Brown and Tony Blair. From 1997 to 2001, he served as the Home Secretary. From 2001 to 2006, Straw served as the Foreign Secretary. Straw is one of three people to have served continuously in Cabinet during the Labour governments between 1997 and 2010.

 21 
Jonny Brownlee
(British Professional Triathlete and Olympic Gold Medalist)
Jonny Brownlee
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: April 30, 1990
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Leeds, West Yorkshire, England
 22 
Richard Quest
(Journalist, Television presenter)
Richard Quest
1
Birthdate: March 9, 1962
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Liverpool
 23 
Alistair Brownlee
(British Triathlete and Only Athlete to Hold Two Olympic Titles in the Triathlon Event)
Alistair Brownlee
2
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: April 23, 1988
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, England

Alistair Brownlee made history by becoming the only athlete with two Olympics medals in the triathlon event. His brother, Jonathan Brownlee, too, is a star athlete. Born to a runner father and a swimmer mother, he was introduced to triathlon by Simon Hearnshaw, his uncle, who was also an avid athlete.

 24 
Josh Warrington
(British Professional Boxer)
Josh Warrington
5
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: November 14, 1990
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Leeds, England
Height: 5'7" (170 cm)
 25 
Hage Geingob
(Politician)
Hage Geingob
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: August 3, 1941
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Otjiwarongo, Namibia
 26 
Harry Triguboff
(Entrepreneur)
Harry Triguboff
1
Listed In: Business People
Birthdate: March 3, 1933
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Dalian, China
 27 
Elio Di Rupo
(Prime Minister of Belgium (2011 - 2014))
Elio Di Rupo
1
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: July 18, 1951
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Morlanwelz, Belgium

Elio Di Rupo is a Belgian socialist politician best known for serving as the Prime Minister of Belgium from 2011 to 2014. Di Rupo, who served as the Mayor of Mons from 2000 to 2018, is the current Minister-President of Wallonia. Elio Di Rupo was also the world's first openly gay man to head a government in modern times.

 28 
Jay Rayner
(Presenter, Journalist, Food critic)
Jay Rayner
1
Birthdate: September 14, 1966
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: London
 29 
Piers Sellers
(British-American Astronaut and Meteorologist)
Piers Sellers
3
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: April 11, 1955
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Crowborough
Died: December 23, 2016

Starting his career with NASA as a research meteorologist, Piers Sellers later became a NASA astronaut. The British-American astronaut and climate scientist was a Space Shuttle mission expert and had visited the International Space Station thrice. He also appeared in the documentary Before the Flood, partially produced by Leonardo DiCaprio.

 30 
Paul Dacre
(Journalist)
Paul Dacre
1
Birthdate: November 14, 1948
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Arnos Grove
 31 
Andy Kershaw
(English Broadcaster and Disc Jockey)
Andy Kershaw
0
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: November 9, 1959
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Littleborough, Lancashire, England
 32 
Tengku Amir Shah
(Crown Prince of Selangor)
Tengku Amir Shah
0
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: December 12, 1990
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: San Francisco, California, United States
 33 
Little Boots
(English Electropop Singer-Songwriter)
Little Boots
1
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: May 4, 1984
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Blackpool, Lancashire, England, United Kingdom
Height: 5'0" (152 cm)
 34 
Clare Short
(Politician)
Clare Short
5
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: February 15, 1946
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Birmingham, Warwickshire, England
 35 
Gavin Esler
(Journalist)
Gavin Esler
2
Birthdate: February 27, 1953
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Glasgow, Scotland

Award-winning Scottish journalist and broadcaster Gavin Esler is best known for presenting BBC programs such as Dateline London, The Film Review, and Hardtalk. He has also penned novels such as The Blood Brother and non-fiction works such as Brexit Without the Bullshit. He also contested as election as a Change UK candidate.

 36 
Boff Whalley
(Musician)
Boff Whalley
0
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: January 1, 1961
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Burnley, Lancashire, England
 37 
Richard Hoggart
(Academic)
Richard Hoggart
0
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: September 24, 1918
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Leeds, England
Died: April 10, 2014
 38 
Andrew Leung
(President of the Legislative Council of Hong Kong)
Andrew Leung
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: February 24, 1951
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Hong Kong
 39 
Tony Harrison
(English Poet, Translator and Playwright)
Tony Harrison
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: April 30, 1937
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Leeds, England
 40 
Arthur Greenwood
(Politician)
Arthur Greenwood
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: February 8, 1880
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Hunslet, Leeds, England, United Kingdom
Died: June 9, 1954
 41 
Wizard of New Zealand
(Comedian and Magician)
Wizard of New Zealand
4
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: December 4, 1932
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: London, England

Ian Brackenbury Channell, who is popularly known as The Wizard of New Zealand, is an illusionist, comedian, educator, and politician. He is best known for his public speeches, especially in front of the famous Christchurch Cathedral. His life and career have inspired a couple of documentaries.  

 42 
David Cox
(Statistician)
David Cox
1
Birthdate: July 15, 1924
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Birmingham, England
 43 
Lauren Jeska
(British Long-Distance Runner and Was Convicted of the Attempted Murder of Ralph Knibbs)
Lauren Jeska
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: September 5, 1974
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Lancaster, United Kingdom
 44 
Herbert Read
(Art Historian)
Herbert Read
1
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: December 4, 1893
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Muscoates, England
Died: June 12, 1968
 45 
John Rupert Firth
(British Linguist)
John Rupert Firth
0
Birthdate: June 17, 1890
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Keighley, England
Died: December 14, 1960
 46 
Dugald Clerk
(Scottish Engineer Known for Designing the World’s First Successful 'Two-Stroke Engine')
Dugald Clerk
0
Birthdate: March 31, 1854
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Glasgow, Scotland
Died: November 12, 1932

Scottish engineer Dugald Clerk is best known for his invention of the two-stroke engine, used widely in motorcycles and other machines. He also headed engineering research of the British Admiralty as its director and was knighted, too. He also co-established the intellectual property service provider Marks & Clerk.

 47 
Meredith Susanna Cara Kercher
(Student)
Meredith Susanna Cara Kercher
11
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: December 28, 1985
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Southwark, London, England
Died: November 1, 2007
 48 
Paul Scoon
(2nd Governor-General of Grenada)
Paul Scoon
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: July 4, 1935
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Gouyave, Grenada
Died: September 2, 2013
 49 
George Porter
(Chemist)
George Porter
0
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: December 6, 1920
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Stainforth, England, United Kingdom
Died: August 31, 2002
 50 
Xavier-Luc Duval
(Politician)
Xavier-Luc Duval
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: January 28, 1958
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Mauritius
Established in 1904 in West Yorkshire, England, is the University of Leeds which is a redbrick university. The student body of the University of Leeds comprises of almost 32,000 students, which makes it the seventh largest university in the United Kingdom. The university believes in power of diversity, and houses individuals from different parts of the world. Being one of the best universities in the U.K., Leeds is ranked as the 32nd best university in Europe and the 93rd best internationally, as per the 2016-17 statistics of QS World University Rankings. It was also declared as the Sunday Times University of the Year in the year 2017. By practicing professionalism, integrity and inclusiveness to everyday learning, Leeds provides a welcoming learning environment. The whole campus occupies a beautiful and sprawling 1230 acres, and is elegantly and diversely styled, as per the history of the country. Leeds offers remarkable programs in various areas of studies such as Arts, Business, Engineering, Science and Medicine, thus making it one of the most targeted British universities today. The University of Leeds, has produced various distinguished people and a large number of Nobel Laureates. Chris Pine, Sayeeda Warsi and Piers Sellers make the list of some eminent people who had their humble beginnings at the University of Leeds. Here’s a list of some notable personalities from the University of Leeds, who have been a constant source of inspiration to the world.