City of Culture winner to be announced so will Southampton win?

·2-min read
Isle of Wight Council Leader and Councillor (inset) wish Southampton's City of Culture bid good luck.
Isle of Wight Council Leader and Councillor (inset) wish Southampton's City of Culture bid good luck.

We will find out today (Wednesday) if the Isle of Wight-supported bid to make Southampton the UK City of Culture in 2025 has won.

In March, it made it through to the final four, along with Bradford, County Durham, and Wrexham County Borough.

The finalists had been whittled down from a record 20 initial bids to eight outstanding longlist applications which also included Cornwall, Derby, Stirling and Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon.

On Facebook last night, Isle of Wight Council wrote: "Good luck Southampton! Let's #MakeItSO for Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport #CityofCulture2025! We'd like to wish @southampton2025 the best of luck! It's time to #MakeItSO for @dcmsgovuk #CityofCulture2025!

"We're proud to be partnering and supporting @southampton2025 during this exciting time in the bid journey!"

Council leader, Councillor Lora Peacey-Wilcox, was pictured with Councillor Julie Jones-Evans, cabinet member for regeneration and business development, in the post.

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.

In February, Southampton revealed some of its plans.

If it wins, there will be "a spectacular opening celebration on land, sea and air," with "a vast fleet of vessels, invited from across the UK and the World, [accompanying] a floating stage, featuring the Goddess of the River Itchen, Ancasta."

The night sky will also be transformed, its bid says, "into a giant canvas, with projections, drones and lasers across rooftops and landmarks including tower blocks and historic monuments."

The benefits of winning the prestigious title include attracting millions of pounds in additional investment to help boost regeneration, a year in the cultural spotlight with hundreds of events encouraging long-lasting participation in the arts, and growth for local tourism.


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