Birmingham, Glasgow, Leeds, Newcastle and Sheffield are also in the running to host the event next year
Two places in the North West have been shortlisted to host next year’s Eurovision Song Contest – but sadly none are in Lancashire.
Manchester and Liverpool have made the shortlist of potential host cities along with Birmingham, Glasgow, Leeds, Newcastle and Sheffield. They were chosen from 20 entries that sent expressions of interest to host the 67th Eurovision Song Contest.
Ukrainian entry Kalush Orchestra triumphed at this year’s competition in Turin, Italy, but the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), which produces the annual event, decided the event cannot be held in the war-torn country following Russia’s invasion. The UK was given the chance to host Eurovision for the ninth time, more than any other country, after Sam Ryder came second in the competition.
Bids had to demonstrate how they plan to reflect Ukrainian culture, music and communities. Scott Mills joined Zoe Ball on the BBC Radio 2 Breakfast Show this morning (August 12) to announce the news.
After the Eurovision shortlist was announced, Kate Phillips, the BBC’s director of unscripted content, said: “We would like to thank all of the cities and regions that submitted bids to host next year’s Eurovision Song Contest. We have seven fantastic cities who we are taking through to the next round.
Congratulations to Birmingham, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle and Sheffield – it’s exciting to see such a breadth of bids going through from across the UK. We are committed to delivering a truly unique Song Contest that celebrates wonderful Ukraine and champions British music and creativity in all its diversity.”
Reacting to the news, Sheona Southern, Managing Director of Marketing Manchester, said: “We are delighted that Manchester has been shortlisted as a host city for the Eurovision Song Contest 2023! As a city-region known globally for our incredible music legends, a reputation for hosting world-class events, and as a place that warmly opens its arms to diverse communities and people from all over the globe, Greater Manchester ticks all the boxes as a potential host for the unifying and much-loved Eurovision Song Contest.
“Marketing Manchester will now work with Manchester City Council to take forward our bid as city-host and we hope our venues, infrastructure and reputation for securing large-scale events that boost the local economy, will help convince the panel that we are ready to pull out all the stops to bring this high-profile contest to Manchester in 2023.”
Councillor Pat Karney told the M.E.N: “This is a wonderful start but now the really hard work begins. I was on Manchesters Olympic and Commonwealth Games Bid Committee and I know how much work has to go into making the case for Manchester.
“We are ready to go full on for the next stage. Here we go Manchester.”
Mayor of Liverpool Joanne Anderson said: “Eurovision is made for this city and I’m so pleased Liverpool has been shortlisted. When we heard the sad announcement that Ukraine would be unable to host, Liverpool stepped forward and offered to stage the event in solidarity with, and in tribute to, this amazing country and its people.
“A huge amount of work is already going on behind the scenes to make Liverpool’s vision and ambition a reality. There are a number of complexities in staging a show of this scale, but we have one of the best event teams in the world, and one of the best cities in the world to act as a backdrop to Eurovision 2023 – let’s do this Liverpool!”
Ukraine will automatically qualify for the Eurovision grand final alongside the so-called big five nations – the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain – who each get a free pass because of their financial contributions to the event. On Friday, UK-based think tank and charity British Future called for Ukrainian refugees and their UK host families to be given “priority tickets” to Eurovision 2023.
The host city is expected to be announced by the autumn.
- 09:18, 12 AUG 2022