Gloucester withdraws from the race to become UK City of Culture

Gloucester will no longer be bidding for the title of UK City of Culture 2025, choosing instead to focus its efforts on recovering from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

Just two weeks after revealing Gloucester would bid to become the UK’s City of Culture 2025, those behind the plans have announced they are pulling out of the race.

The two organisations behind the bid, Gloucester City Council and Gloucester Culture Trust, have now said they will be focusing all their efforts on the city’s cultural recovery.

A joint statement from the two partners said: ‘While the City of Culture title undoubtedly brings new opportunities, and Gloucester was proposing a truly ambitious cross-county approach, we have decided on reflection to concentrate our resources on delivering the city’s cultural recovery and existing projects that we are committed to, whilst supporting the fantastic work that has been done to grow Gloucester’s creative communities.

‘The bid process requires significant resources and it has been decided to focus that energy and investment into the recovery of the city following the challenges of the pandemic.

‘The conversations which have taken place around creative collaboration across the county are set to continue as will the work to invest in local artists, performers and producers to nurture our emerging talents.

‘We’d like to thank all those partners and supporters who have come together to offer their support and hope to be able to harness that enthusiasm as we continue to develop the cultural scene and recovery in Gloucester.’

The initial bid had been backed by the leader of the county council, Mark Hawthorne, who called Gloucester the ‘perfect choice’ for the title, as well as David Owen, of business group GFirst LEP, who said the accolade had the potential to ‘boost the whole economy of the region’ and ‘provide a massive boost to morale’.

Read more: Gloucester is bidding to become UK City of Culture in 2025

By Andrew Merrell

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© SoGlos
Thursday 22 July 2021

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