Bradford urged to have faith by Hull City of Culture leader as it awaits 2025 announcement
This year marks the fifth anniversary of the Hull festival, which Rosie Millard said has had a legacy on the city, particularly for its young people.
It will battle Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon, Cornwall, County Durham, Derby, Southampton, Stirling and Wrexham County Borough for the award which is delivered by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).
Rosie Millard, former BBC arts correspondent who is now chair for the broadcaster’s Children in Need fundraiser, said: “Bradford is very different as a satellite of Leeds.
“I would say champion your city and have confidence that Bradford is great. Encourage national and cultural institutions to take it seriously and to come and engage with your institutions on the ground.
“Why not host the Baftas from the National Media Museum, for example?
“A critical tool for Hull was our partnership with the BBC. Former Director General Tony Hall got it.
“He said, ‘I will make 2017 Hull centric,’ and he was as good as his word.”
Reflecting on her key memories from the 2017 City of Culture, Ms Millard said: “The legacy of memory is very powerful, and it’s nothing to do with physical buildings.
“People from Hull will have those memories of walking through the city centre and thinking ‘this is where I stood when I saw the Royal Ballet performing in front of the Minster.
“I spent the whole year in tears, basically. The whole thing was just so special and brilliant.”
Ms Millard said she hopes the legacy of the City of Culture could see Hull selected for more high profile events.
She said: “Hull will be seen as a place that can actually deliver huge, sustainable long-lasting events. You could have the Commonwealth Games in Hull.
“The legacy of seeing a city in a different way means you have to have a slightly long-term view about it.”
The City of Culture takes place ever four years, with Coventry another previous recipient.
Some 95 per cent of Hull’s residents said they participated in at least one event of the City of Culture, analysis afterwards showed, with 800 jobs created and more than £219m of investment made into the city’s economy.
A spokesperson for Bradford’s bid said the award “will leave a lasting legacy of increased visitor numbers and a more vibrant, sustainable cultural sector.”