Eight locations have made it to the longlist for the UK’s City of Culture 2025, with one of them set to take over from Coventry.
Around 20 areas put bids forward, but only eight made the longlist, with those on the list able to access £40,000 each for the first time in order to develop their full application ahead of a shortlist being announced early next year.
All the bids were asked to include information on how they intended to use culture to recover from the Covid pandemic, as well as how they would use culture to grow and strengthen their local area.
These are the 8 places that made the UK’s City of Culture 2025 longlist:
- Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon
- County Durham
- Wrexham County Borough
Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries said the focus of the competition this time around was “levelling up access to culture across the country”.
Ms Dorries said: “Winning the UK City of Culture competition has a hugely positive impact on an area, driving investment, creating jobs, and highlighting that culture is for everyone, regardless of their background.
“This year’s focus is on levelling up access to culture across the country and making sure there is a legacy that continues for generations to come. I look forward to seeing what this brilliant longlist has in store as they continue in the competition.”
Sir Phil Redmond, chairman of the City of Culture expert advisory panel, said: “The expressions of interest stage was introduced as an opportunity to encourage many more places to experience the benefit of coming together to define and share a cultural vision for their areas, and what the longlist demonstrates is the range and depth of cultural ambition across the whole of the UK.
“Also for the first time, each longlisted city will receive financial support to help them develop their vision. Each is different. Each has its own story to tell. All share a common aim: to demonstrate how culture can act as the creative catalyst for change. I am really looking forward to seeing how each story develops.”