They’re the Leeds Olympic heroes who’ve made history on some of the biggest sporting stages in the world.
Now Leeds’s triathlete brothers Jonny and Ali Brownlee are helping their home city to lead the pack in the race to become European Capital of Culture in 2023.
The Brownlees, who took a stunning first and second in front of a rapturous crowd at this year’s Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon Leeds, have joined hundreds of other people from across the city backing the bid.
Ali, a two time Olympic gold medallist, said: “Leeds is a place where sport and culture go hand in hand, and where people are so passionate and enthusiastic about seeing their city represented on the world stage.
“Competing in front of a home crowd is always unforgettable and you can see how proud people are to be from Leeds and how keen they are for the city to do well.”
Jonny, who won the bronze at London 2012 and took the silver in Rio last year, added: “Leeds has seen some unforgettable occasions over the past few years and has a great reputation now for hosting world class events.
“Becoming European Capital of Culture would be a real recognition of how far the city has come as a centre of cultural and sporting excellence and we’re both proud to be doing our bit to make it happen.”
As part of their efforts to help Leeds land the title, Ali and Jonny have pledged to help spread the word about #makeLeeds2023 on social media.
Everyone in Leeds has the chance to join the same team as the Brownlees and pledge their support for the bid in their own way using #makeleeds2023.
Other ideas for pledges could telling 23 family and friends about the bid, sharing details about the bid with everyone on your social networks or downloading a new Maker’s Manual, which includes creative ideas for how to get involved, from the Leeds 2023 website.
Others around Leeds who have already given the bid their backing include Leeds Rhinos star Jamie Jones Buchannan, Leeds West Indian Carnival, Leeds Children’s Mayor and cross party councillors.
Sharon Watson, chair of the Leeds 2023 independent steering group, said: “The enthusiasm for the bid that we’ve already seen from people across Leeds has been truly inspiring and it’s clearer than ever that there’s an incredible passion for this once-in-a-generation opportunity for our city.
“With the all-important submission date now fast approaching, we’re keen to harness that collective energy and help spread the message that the bid is something that everyone, from every walk of life can be a part of.
“We’d urge as many people as possible to take this chance to get involved, pledge their support and help show the world that culture is at the absolute heart of Leeds and our communities.”
More details of how to pledge your support or where you can download a Maker’s Manual can be found at: http://leeds2023.co.uk/