It’s already a cultural hotspot for the county, and now Gloucester has set its sights on becoming the next UK City of Culture in 2025.
Arts Council England invited towns and cities across the country to express their interest in the title in May 2021, with Gloucester Culture Trust announcing its bid for Gloucester in July 2021.
The charity – which was set up to keep culture at the forefront of city life – is co-ordinating the Gloucester for Gloucestershire bid, which aims to reflect the ‘strong cultural calendar and wealth of creativity’ in the county.
Although Gloucester has been chosen to spearhead the bid, due to its recent regeneration efforts and investment in cultural activities such as Gloucester Rooftop Festival and Luke Jerram’s Of Earth and Sky, Gloucester Culture Trust is proposing a year-long series of events, festivals, collaborations and workshops at venues across the county.
Councillor Mark Hawthorne, leader of Gloucestershire County Council, said: ‘Gloucester is a dynamic and vibrant city that is undergoing massive regeneration and building an impressive reputation for culture.
‘It’s the perfect choice to lead a bid for Gloucestershire and I believe has a real chance of becoming the 2025 City of Culture. It would attract huge investment which would benefit the whole of Gloucestershire and not only launch the city but the county as well, onto the national and international stage.’
David Owen at GFirst Local Enterprise Partnership, added: ‘A City of Culture bid would boost the whole economy of the region, provide a massive boost to morale and help others see that Gloucester is a great small city in a beautiful county.
‘The reach of City of Culture will have a positive impact from the Forest of Dean through the Severn Valley and into the Cotswold Hills. It gives the whole of Gloucestershire a unique opportunity to change the perception of the county for the better and to increase inclusion, equality, and diversity which can only be a good thing for business and for residents.’