Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 13°C

min temp: 12°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Colchester: Successful bid to become UK’s Capital of Culture 2017 could net town £10million boost

19:01 18 November 2012

Dorian Kelly, who is leading Colchester

Dorian Kelly, who is leading Colchester's bid to win UK City of Culture 2017

Archant

ENGLAND’S oldest recorded town could net a £10million windfall if it wins the race to become the UK’s City of Culture in 2017, it was claimed last night.

shares

The team behind Colchester’s bid said landing the prestigious honour is likely to lead to significant investment.

Dorian Kelly, who is leading the coalition of arts organisations, community groups and businesses, said they stood a “good as anyone, better than most” chance of winning.

Mr Kelly, who describes himself as an arts entrepreneur, insists Colchester is able to enter the contest – despite being a town – because the criteria for entry is to have a population above 100,000.

He said: “This is 2012 – we have done the Olympics, the Cultural Olympiad and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. So Colchester can do it. The success of the Olympics was a big factor in our deciding to do this.

“On the basis of Norwich and Derry’s bid in 2013 – and Liverpool’s for the European Capital of Culture – we know for a fact that major sponsors like BT have ring-fenced up to £10m for whoever wins – so there’s a possibility of at least that level of investment.”

Mr Kelly revealed the group had already begun writing the bid document.

The Department of Culture, Media and Sport is expected to invite bids shortly and Colchester will then have three months to submit its application.

A shortlist of towns and cities is expected to be drawn up in 2013 – which is when the real work begins, according to Mr Kelly – before a winner is announced in late 2014.

The coalition behind the bid, initially going under the name of The Culture Company, has commissioned an independent impact assessment to gauge what benefits Colchester would see if it was successful.

Mr Kelly said he expects it to reveal that even if Colchester is just shortlisted it will be in a “win-win” situation.

He said all five of those shortlisted for UK City of Culture 2013 had since reported that funding was easier to come by and visitor numbers have gone up.

The bid – much like the town’s attempt to be named a city in the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee year – is community focused, meaning a lot of work is being provided for free.

Mr Kelly said the cost of entering the contest was negligible, with money just needing to be found for things like meeting rooms.

He added he was in discussions with Colchester Borough Council but it is unclear at this stage whether the authority would be supporting the bid.

Related articles

shares

0 comments

Essex fire crews attended

Firefighters in Essex have been called to a blaze at an art warehouse in Colchester this evening.

London Road North in Lowestoft has been cordoned off by emergency services.

Emergency services have descended on the centre of Lowestoft following an incident this afternoon.

Shotley wins Village of the Year.

Shotley has been announced the winner of the annual Suffolk Village of the Year competition.

Firefighters attended the incident

Emergency services were called to a crash on the A14 near Coddenham this afternoon.

It won't be the real thing, sadly, but there is an Abba tribute in Colchester this weekend

Brave the September weather this weekend and treat family and friends to a day out in East Anglia. Unsure where to go? Here are 10 events you shouldn’t miss:

The scene of a fire at Exning Primary School. Headteacher, James Clark.

Two members of the public tried to stop the blaze at Exning Primary School before the fire brigade arrived.

Ronald Chisnall

An 89-year-old widower who sexually assaulted two schoolgirls at his Ipswich home has been jailed for 34 months.

Fire crews at the scene of a fire behind the former Burton's factory in Ipswich Waterfront

Firefighters have been called to a fire at the former Burtons factory on Ipswich Waterfront.

Jonathan Dotchin, Kezi Mellen UCS LGBT+ society with Valerie Jarvis of Theta Cafe with some of the items collected for Calais refugees.

Members of a university Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) society have launched a collection for refugees in Calais.

The A14

Emergency teams worked to release a man trapped in his car after it overturned on the A14.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages