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Bradford wins #CityofCulture2025


Bradford City of Culture

Bradford has been crowned UK City of Culture 2025.

The city prepared a compelling, energetic, and dynamic bid that impressed the judges, who praised the ambition and inclusivity of Bradford’s plans to welcome the world in 2025. 

Professor Shirley Congdon, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Bradford, said: “We are thrilled that Bradford has been named City of Culture 2025. Our compelling bid generated an enormous amount of energy and support, and thoroughly deserved to be recognised by the judges. Our congratulations to County Durham, Southampton, and Wrexham County Borough, they presented excellent bids and should be proud to have been shortlisted.

“Our University has a long-held reputation for conducting research with real-world impact and for driving social mobility. The City of Culture designation will benefit people across the district, including our community of students and staff, giving them access to a rich and diverse programme of culture and thought-provoking ideas.

"We are excited to continue our work supporting the Bradford 2025 team in programming and delivering the events that lead up to a truly vibrant year in 2025 and convening the evaluation work that will capture the long-term impact of Bradford 2025 on our people and place."

BradfordBid Facts

THE YOUNGEST PLACE: As the UK’s youngest city (29% of its population under 20 and nearly a quarter under 16), young people have been instrumental in creating our winning bid, and will continue to be at the heart of helping bring our year of culture to life.

THE MOST DIVERSE PLACE: As the most diverse place in the competition, the City of Culture designation is an opportunity to tell the district’s story in its own voice, offering a platform for the experiences of our many communities and cultures.

ECONOMIC/TOURISM BOOST: It is estimated that the UK City of Culture 2025 title could bring an extra £700m into Bradford district, creating 3,000 jobs and attracting around 1.1m visitors.

HUGE OPPORTUNITIES FOR LEVELLING UP: Bradford district was recently named by an independent report as the city with the most to gain from the Levelling Up agenda. Earlier this month, Bradford Council launched a White Paper which outlines why levelling-up Bradford’s performance will have a greater impact on the national economy than levellingup any other large town or city.

AMBITION AND POTENTIAL: Everyone is seeing Bradford district’s ambition and potential. Winning the City of Culture title will drive new tourism, develop new creative and cultural skills, offer new creative opportunities to everyone in the district and draw national and international attention to the district.

CULTURE DRIVING INVESTMENT: Public and private sector businesses are fully behind the bid and will continue to play a part in its delivery. More than 35 partners from every sector of the business community have come on board as official supporters of the bid. Stakeholders here understand that culture is a proven catalyst for attracting inward investment and driving inclusive growth.

IT’S AN OPPORtUNITY FOR BRADFORD TO TELL ITS OWN STORY IN ITS OWN VOICE and change many of myths and preconceptions of the district.

NEXT STEPS: A Bradford 2025 transition team will now kick-start a recruitment drive to appoint a Creative Director and Managing Director to lead the delivery of the district’s bid. The roles are set to be in place during 2022 with recruitment of a wider delivery team to follow.

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