Liverpool is one of seven UK cities shortlisted to host the song contest
Liverpool – and six other cities – have made the shortlist as the potential host city for next year’s flagship event.
The city has successfully sailed through the first part of the bidding process, with the BBC and the European Broadcast Union (EBU) confirming it has met the essential criteria regarding the suitability of the venue, transport links and past experience of hosting major events.
Liverpool City Council and the Combined Authority will now work with partners across the region to produce a detailed bid to set out why Liverpool could - and should - host the biggest song competition in the world.
Details of Liverpool’s bid will be kept under wraps for now, but the bidding team has already hinted Liverpool’s proposal will pay tribute to Ukraine and its communities.
Ten cities submitted expressions of interest. Liverpool, Birmingham, Glasgow, Leeds, Manchester, Newcastle and Sheffield are now all in the running to host the event. The seven candidate cities were announced by Scott Mills live on Zoë Ball’s Radio 2 breakfast show.
The final decision will be made at the end of September.
Here are seven reasons why Liverpool should get douze points to host Eurovision 2023...
We’re a UNESCO City of Music
Liverpool is UNESCO's only City of Music in England. Our musical history is legendary around the world; from Merseybeat and the Beatles to Erics and the post punk scene of the 1970s and 80s, right through to Cream, the Zutons and Rebecca Ferguson. Not forgetting Sporty Spice, Mel C. Liverpool isn’t just a UNESCO city of music though, it’s recognised as the World Capital of Pop by the Guinness Book of Records. We’re home to the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts, and the award-winning British Music Experience; the UK's Museum of Popular Music.
We’ve got the venue
The 11,000-capacity M&S Bank Arena fits the bill for the size of venue stipulated by event organisers. It has hosted all the giants of pop - Beyonce, Bob Dylan, Paul McCartney, George Michael, Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber, Nicky Minaj - as well as the MTV Europe Music Awards and the MOBO awards. The interconnected AAC arena, exhibition and convention centre could potentially host the press centre that accommodates journalists and broadcasters. There’s also plenty of space nearby for the Eurovision Village and Fanzone.
We know how to do events
Our vibrant festival scene showcases our musical diversity with everything from Africa Oye, Liverpool International Music Festival, Liverpool Sound City, Liverpool Irish Festival, Brazilica, Pride in Liverpool and the International Festival of Psychedelia. Liverpool was pivotal to the re-emergence of the live music industry after COVID-19, staging the world’s first music concert and nightclub event in a trial to understand how venues and events could operate safely as the pandemic regulations eased. Liverpool has also seen three visits from the Giants, the Cunard Queens on the River Mersey and hosted the summit of Foreign and Development Ministers from the G7. You're in safe hands.
Liverpool has Eurovision history
We've got a unique connection with Eurovision here, from Wirral sisters Kate and Jane Robbins who represented the UK in the group Prima Donna (1980) to Jemini, the first UK act to be given the dreaded “nul points” in 2003. Sonia actually came very close to winning Eurovision in 1993 but the flame haired Scouse songstress was pipped to the post by Ireland. If Sonia won, Liverpool would have hosted. The UK’s 2006 entry, Daz Sampson, is from St Helens. Liz McClarnon was up for representing the UK in 2007 but got beaten by Scooch in the Song for Europe. Katrina and the Waves won Eurovision for the UK in 1997 - the band also has a song called Going down to Liverpool. Follow Katrina's advice and you'll be walking on sunshine.
Our airport performs better than Manchester
Liverpool John Lennon Airport has recently invested £2m in its facilities and continues to build on its faster, easier, friendlier passenger experience. You can fly directly to Liverpool from 32 different countries and the launch of Lufthansa’s connection between LJLA and Frankfurt connects passengers with 150 destinations across the globe. There are plenty of benefits of flying in and out of Liverpool including less queues, reduced security processing times and one of the best on-time departure records of any UK airport.
We’ve got the hotels
Getting rest after a well-spent day in Liverpool will never be a problem. We’ve got hotels that are literally at the arena (including the four-star Pullman with 216 rooms) and more just next door at Royal Albert Dock. Whether you want to stay at the party in Mathew Street or in the bustle of Liverpool ONE, or you want a hip boutique stay in the Baltic Quarter - Liverpool has got you covered. There’s the stunning Hope Street Hotel, frequented by Liverpool FC players and A-list celebrities, the new INNSiDE by Melia with its 360 sky bar, the Titanic Hotel with its Maya Blue spa, and even the Beatles-themed Hard Days Night Hotel.
We’re a Eurovision fan favourite
A recent poll on fan site Eurovisionworld.com put Liverpool as the firm favourite to play host for the event. The fans have spoken. The world loves Liverpool and we love hosting visitors. We’re super-friendly and we know how to show guests to our city a good time. Liverpudlians are "boss" and we'd be boss at hosting Eurovision.
What more is there to say? Liverpool is the obvious choice to host Eurovision 2023. In the words of Graham Norton, “Give them a nudge - every vote counts.”
*Article last updated 12 August 2022.
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