Grouping together for Leeds Capital of Culture bid

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Heritage groups from across Leeds will join forces to discuss the part they can play in the city’s bid to be named European Capital of Culture 2023.

Societies are being urged to have their say on how they can get involved with the bid for Leeds to be named a cultural heavyweight across the globe.

Groups including the Middleton Railway Trust and the Yorkshire Archaeological Society will attend the meeting next month.

Dr Kevin Grady, director of Leeds Civic Trust, said: “If Leeds wins Capital of Culture 2023 it will be a tremendous opportunity to show off the heritage of Leeds and tell people about how Leeds became the great city it is today.

“We have called together all our affiliated societies and the amenity societies and history and heritage groups we are aware of in Leeds to discuss how we collectively and as individual groups can help Leeds make a successful bid and show off the city in 2023.”

The meeting will be hosted at St Chad’s Parish Centre, on Otley Road, on Saturday, April 9, between 2pm and 4pm,

It will be addressed by Nicola Greenan who is a member of the steering group and chair of the 2023 Engagement Advisory Group. She will explain the priorities for developing the bid as well as outlining the cultural strategy for Leeds. Societies and groups will also suggest how they can get involved with the bidding process.

Cities in the two host countries, UK and Hungary, will be in competition for the title in 2023, during which the winning city will host a range of cultural events with a strong European theme.

The last UK cities to hold the title in the UK were Liverpool in 2008 and Glasgow in 1990- campaigns that kick-started extensive regeneration and a boom in the culture and creative sectors within each city.

The Leeds panel will now draw up an official expression of interest which must be submitted near the end of 2016, with the final bid submitted by December 2017.

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