Eight areas longlisted for UK City of Culture 2025 were today unveiled by Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries.
Following a record 20 bids, the eight longlisted locations are Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon, Bradford, Cornwall, County Durham, Derby, Southampton, Stirling and Wrexham County Borough.
Winning the prestigious title has enormous benefits with previous hosts attracting millions of pounds in additional investment, creating jobs and attracting thousands of visitors to their local area.
The places will now work with a panel of experts and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) to finalise their bids before the shortlist is announced early next year.
Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries said:
Sir Phil Redmond, Chair of the City of Culture Expert Advisory Panel, said:
The competition, delivered by DCMS in collaboration with the Offices for Scotland and Wales and the Northern Ireland Executive, uses culture as a tool for levelling up towns and cities across the country. The longlist was recommended by an independent advisory panel which brings together a wide range of expertise from across the UK.
All bids were asked to explain how they would use culture to grow and strengthen their local area, as well as how they would use culture to recover from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. For the first time, this year each longlisted place will receive £40,000 to support the development of their promising proposals.
The winner will be announced in spring 2022 and will follow Coventry’s tenure as UK City of Culture 2021 to take the lead on culture in the UK in 2025.
Previous winners Hull and Derry-Londonderry have shown how the competition can deliver greater and long-lasting cultural participation, economic regeneration and local pride, whilst Coventry City of Culture 2021 is already providing a blueprint for how culture can be at the heart of social and economic recovery.
Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries will also be hosting a roundtable with all unsuccessful bidders to discuss how best they can be supported.
UK Government Minister for Scotland Iain Stewart said:
Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis said:
Welsh Secretary Simon Hart said:
Full list of bids (* marks longlisted bids):
- Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon*
- The City of Bangor and Northwest Wales
- The Borderlands region, comprising Dumfries and Galloway, Scottish Borders, Northumberland, Cumbria and Carlisle City
- Conwy County
- County Durham*
- City of Newport
- The Tay Cities region
- Torbay and Exeter
- Wakefield District
- City of Wolverhampton
- Wrexham County Borough*
- Great Yarmouth & East Suffolk
More information about the UK City of Culture Panel.
Find out more on Coventry City of Culture 2021.