Seven UK cities will battle it out to host next year’s Eurovision Song Contest.
The competition had been due to take place in Ukraine after they won the 2022 edition.
However due to the on-going war sparked by Russia’s invasion earlier this year, the country is unable to host Eurovision in 2023.
The UK, who came runners up with Sam Ryder, will instead play host to the competition next year.
A number of cities have bid to be the venue for Eurovision Song Contest 2023 and a shortlist has now been announced.
Here is all you need to know:
What the shortlist of host cities for Eurovision Song Contest 2023?
The potential host city for the competition in the UK next year will be one of these seven:
In total 20 cities put in an “expression of interest” - but London did not make the shortlist.
The announcement was made this morning on BBC Radio 2 Breakfast Show, with Scott Mills joining Zoe Ball for the occasion.
What have the BBC said?
After the Eurovision shortlist was announced, Kate Phillips, the BBC’s director of unscripted content, said: “We would like to thank all of the cities and regions that submitted bids to host next year’s Eurovision Song Contest. We have seven fantastic cities who we are taking through to the next round.
“Congratulations to Birmingham, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle and Sheffield – it’s exciting to see such a breadth of bids going through from across the UK.
“We are committed to delivering a truly unique Song Contest that celebrates wonderful Ukraine and champions British music and creativity in all its diversity.”
How will the host city be chosen?
The BBC previously announced that the UK city chosen to host the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest will be selected in a “two-stage process” against requirements that assess the city’s “capacity and capability”.
In a recently published Q&A, the BBC – who broadcast the contest in the UK and will make the selection alongside the EBU – have specified that the host city will be chosen using a two-stage selection process.
Once all the applications have been received a process will take place whereby cities will be shortlisted “based on their ability to meet the requirements and their responses around capability and experience”.
Detailing the requirements the host city must meet in order to be considered, the BBC said: “The final decision on selecting the host city will be based on a city or region’s capacity and capability in meeting the BBC’s and the EBU’s requirements, as well as availability of resources and general experience in hosting a large and complex event such as the Eurovision Song Contest.
“For example, last year the EBU’s host city criteria was based on providing a venue able to accommodate at least 10,000 spectators (as well as a press centre), that should be within easy reach of an international airport and with ample hotel accommodation.”
The broadcaster also said it may “consult” the UK Government on the decision, but the host city will ultimately be decided upon by the BBC and the EBU.
Why is Eurovision Song Contest 2023 not in Ukraine?
The event’s organisers, the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), previously decided the event could not be held in Ukraine as a result of the Russian invasion.
This was despite the country’s 2022 entry Kalush Orchestra triumphing at this year’s competition in Turin, Italy, where the UK’s Sam Ryder was runner-up.