The Orbit Leeds

The Orbit Venue

The Worlds best techno club, based in Morley?

Maybe, although the Dorien Grey, E-Werk, Lost and others would probably have something to say about that. It was definitely the best in Britain though.  It ran from 1991 when it started playing hardcore right through until 2003.

The Orbit Leeds

In the early days there were actually two Orbit nights running it was that popular, with one also running in that other clubbing mecca of Ossett. The music policy was originally piano heaven, whether Vertigo and Sasha style, or harder Grooverider and Sy style. By the middle of 1993 the club had seen the writing on the wall for the whistle posse and (some would say sadly) a strictly techno policy was then pursued. However as DJ bookings were placed some months in advance flyers for later in 1993 have interesting mixtures from week to week of hardcore and techno DJ’s, and some times even on the same night. See this flyer for an example –

Cue pained letters to the clubbing magazines from those refused entry for wearing workmens outfits, hi vis, white hats etc. It was for the best in the long run as most of the hardcore nights (not the big events such as Fantazia) that had dominated in 91 and 92 had bitten the dust by the end of 93, but some of the original Orbit crew felt cheated and moved on to more rave friendly venues such as Bowlers and Angels.

As a result if the music policy shift, photos from the Orbit always have a strangely dressed crowd in them. There are the techno nutter shirt off crew, but then also a fairly dressed up mid 90’s crew as well. Ralph Lauren shirts and jumpers a plenty. Not the real super club wear of shiny shirts and furry boots (for the girls) that really took hold around 1994, but not what you’d expect in a club with a music policy that could be hard as nails. By the end of the night you could guarantee everyone would be soaked in sweat and looking bedraggled though.

Controversy surrounded the Orbits 5th birthday – see the flyer here. What’s weird about this is that how did the other club think they were going to get away with it?

Orbit 5th Birthday

Here is the Orbit in action [youtube]

Facebook Group for The Orbit Leeds

We are always up for new Orbit mixes, so drop us a line at if you have any to trade. Also flyer scans.

Update – The Orbit is back.  Check out the Orbit reloaded site here If you went let us know how it was.


  1. I have a pretty rare… Square orbit flyer ,can’t b many knocking about,John over Morley orbit crew

  2. The best thing about morley. before .since .and 4 ever will b, proud 2b morley orbit crew…All the Time John s

    1. I know what you feel take a buzz and fly should be a good night and Morley had a great venue ! I’m from them days but younger and ppl far and wide flocked the street we all miss the one a month venue techno ravers and hardcore nights so keep ya head together take a chill pill have a great time !!!! Hahaha! Wot a buzzing look at life!

  3. That’s where it all began. Orbit in Ossett. F**k knows what year it was but I was very young. I got the bus there on my own and luckily bumped into someone I knew. It was just madness. Pure madness and I loved it. I remember getting crushed at the main door waiting to get in and I remember getting a lift home in the early morning sun by some random. Everything in between was ….madness.

    1. Must have been 1991 because it was only open from June to December at Ossett, it was surrounded by houses and they complained from the moment it opened, So it was always on the cards that it was gonna get shut down. This was a massive shame, especially for us from Wakefield, because firstly it was our club, we didn’t have to go to Leeds like we had been doing before. I might be biased but while it was open it was the best club around and I remember Mixmag agreeing in their write-up way back then and that includes Quadrant park Hacketts, Hacienda Shellys, etc. A great club but only for less than a year or so before shifting to Morley and that place was bigger and hotter but it gradually turned into a different club especially after the first 18 months or so, when they went from playing the same tunes all clubs were playing whether it be more house or techno, having live PA’s like N-Joi on the same night as DJ Sasha, to regulars like Dj Sy and Mann Parris, Nipper, Laurent Garnier, DJ Vertigo, DJ Joey Beltram, Grooverider, Fabio etc for the first couple of years there was something for everyone. Then around the end of 93, you could see it getting harder because rave music was splintering into different categories and they become a straight-up hardcore Techno club with Westbam, CJ Bolland, Sven Vath, DJ Billy Nasty, Dave Clarke, etc.

      I remember being in Morley just after Xmas, in fact, it was Dec 27th ’91, and I heard from the promoter that Ossett only had 60 people turn up because all the Wakey lot had moved over to Morley to check out the club and Ossett was getting shut down any day. it’s a shame it sort of fizzled out because it deserved one big last night as the Hacienda did. You couldn’t beat a place that took their taps off their sinks so you couldn’t use them and the place used to rain in sweat and condensation, people used to come out in T-shirts in December and looked on fire with all the steam coming off them.

  4. We used to travel 80-odd miles to come here in the early days of the venue, a van full of us (how many ravers can you fit in the back of a transit van? A fucking a shit load apparently!). Comfort wasn’t on the agenda.

    My overriding memory (apart from the night itself) is that the bouncers used to get very intimate, far more intrusive searches than anywhere else. We’d neck a pill in the car park opposite then queue up. Come ups were fucking weird anyway without some 40 year old, 18 stone, bald fella fondling your bollocks on the way in!

    Get inside and just lose yourself for a few hours. Not sure if they ever sorted the ventilation but it used to rain sweat as the night went on.

    Spend 4/5 hours going mental in here the on to a motorway service car park for an outdoors late night rave (much to the amusement of the odd family traveling overnight to their destination).

    What I wouldn’t give for one more night. Just pure fucking magic.

  5. Who remembers Orbits 1st birthday??
    Was my 21st. Top night with Cas crew. Jo Kenny Debbie n Boris.
    Love to see any video clips.
    RIP Kenny N Boris
    Both sadly missed xxx

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