Belfast Telegraph

D-day for Derry’s city of culture bid

By Will Ellison

Today is the last chance for Londonderry to impress in its bid to become UK City of Culture in 2013.

If Derry wins the prestigious accolade it will be following in the footsteps of Liverpool, which enjoyed a hugely successful term in 2008, leading to the introduction of the UK’s City of Culture programme.

Derry’s delegates, led by City of Derry CEO Valerie Watts and Ilex’s CEO Aideen McGinley, made their final presentation this morning at the O2 conference centre at Albert Dock in Liverpool. The presentation will last for one-and-a-half hours, in which time the delegates will attempt to persuade the judges — headed up by Phil Redmond, creator of Grange Hill and Brookside — that the Maiden City deserves to be named City of Culture 2013. Derry is the only city making a presentation today. Birmingham, Sheffield and Norwich made their presentations yesterday. A decision on who wins will be made next month. Mrs Watts said: “We are prepared and confident. There are no nerves.”

City of Derry Mayor Colum Eastwood said that he was confident in the city’s bid. And Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness said: “Winning this bid will mean a great deal to the city and the region.”

Belfast Telegraph


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