Eurovision in Sheffield: Yorkshire city among first to announce bid to host song contest as mayor says it is the 'obvious choice'

Sheffield was one of the first cities to announce a bid to host Eurovision 2023 after it was revealed the song contest will come to the UK next year.

Sheffield City Council was among the first to announce a bid for the song contest, saying on Twitter: “We’ve told Eurovision we’d love to host… watch this space.”

Organisers the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) previously decided the event could not be held in the war-torn Ukraine following the Russian invasion.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

This was despite Ukrainian entry Kalush Orchestra triumphing at this year’s competition in Turin, Italy, with the UK’s Sam Ryder the runner-up.

Eurovision Song Contest winners Kalush Orchestra

South Yorkshire mayor Oliver Coppard said Sheffield was the “obvious choice” because of its international airport and the fact it is twinned with the Ukrainian city of Donetsk.

“South Yorkshire has a long, proud musical heritage, from the Human League and Def Leppard to Arctic Monkeys, Pulp and Self Esteem. With Tramlines – the biggest urban music festival in Europe – we’ve just shown what a great show we’re capable of putting on,” he said.

Elsewhere in Yorkshire, Leeds also indicated an intention to bid."Hosting Eurovision mid-way through the Leeds 2023 year of culture… you know it makes total sense!," Leeds City Council said on Twitter.

The council released a statement in June that said should the UK host Eurovision, "it goes without saying" that Leeds would bid.

Where in England Eurovision has previously been hosted

This would not be the first time Yorkshire has hosted Eurovision - in 1982 the song contest took place in Harrogate. Read more: Remembering when Yorkshire hosted the Eurovision Song Contest in 1982--------

Meanwhile, London has hosted four times, while Edinburgh, Brighton, and Birmingham have each done it once.

London, Manchester and Glasgow are among the other cities offering to host Eurovision next year, with the capital’s mayor vowing to make it a contest that “celebrates the people of Ukraine and shows off the very best of Britain”.

The BBC has confirmed that the process to select the host city for the 2023 contest will begin this week.

The Eurovision Song Contest 1982 - when Harrogate hosted

It will manage the bidding along with the EBU and expects it to be completed by the autumn.

The BBC said relevant information for prospective hosts will be issued shortly and host cities wanting information packs should make contact via an allocated email address.

The UK's Sam Ryder - the runner up of Eurovision 2022 - reminded people that it will be “Ukraine’s party” and the UK are “just inviting them to throw it at our house.”

In a video message directed at those in Ukraine, he added: “We know how to throw a party here in the UK and our excitement is outshone only by our focus on that one sole objective to hold space and be on hand to help wherever needed to host an event that celebrates Ukrainian culture, history and music and to stand in solidarity with the rest of the globe shining a unified light.

Sam Ryder, who finished second in the final of the Eurovision 2022 Song Contest

“The rest of us are just loving facilitators and there is no doubt in my mind that we will all come together in the spirit of unity that Eurovision has always been about to celebrate the wonderful people of Ukraine.”