Leeds is bidding for the title of European Capital of Culture 2023.

Leeds, Leeds Star

Leeds is bidding for the title of European Capital of Culture 2023. The competition can only be hosted by UK five times per century and was last hosted in 2008 when Liverpool won the title. Prior to this Glasgow is the only other city to have the competition in 1990.

  • Liverpool’s year as European Capital of Culture 2008 is estimated to have resulted in an economic impact of £750 million and opinion surveys showing an 85% increase in satisfaction from the local residents when asked if they liked living in the city.
  • The Leeds bid is being led by and Independent Steering Group which has cross party support from Leeds City Council. Leeds City Council is already a minority funder of the bid with commercial partners and sponsorship contributing to the cost of bidding.
  • The bid process takes four years with Leeds starting conversations about bidding in 2014 and expecting a decision in 2018.
  • The competition is delivered by the European Commission but not specifically for EU Countries. Norway, Iceland and Switzerland are all outside of the EU and have all hosted successful European Capitals of Culture. The competition is administered in the UK by the Department for Culture Media & Sport (DCMS)
  • Two cities host the competition each year. In 2023 one UK city and one Hungarian city will host the title. Current European Capitals of Culture are Aarhus in Denmark and Pafos in Cyprus.
  • For more information visit: www.leeds2023.co.uk

Leeds is bidding to become European Capital of Culture 2023, celebrating the exceptional, experimental and diverse cultural landscape of our city and its communities.

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