Dundee to launch bid to be chosen as UK City of Culture in 2017

Dundee is home to Desperate Dan. Picture: Ian Rutherford
Dundee is home to Desperate Dan. Picture: Ian Rutherford
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DUNDEE is set to launch a bid to be chosen as the United Kingdom’s City of Culture in 2017.

• Councillors to consider detailed report on Monday, calling on authority to establish development group to drive bid forward

• Dundee has a ‘reputation for effective partnership working’ which is ‘underpinned by the V & A and Waterfront Project which have been defining features of the city’s cultural sector’

Councillors will consider a detailed report on Monday, calling on the authority to establish a bid development group to drive the proposal forward.

Councillor Ken Guild, the leader of the administration, said: “There has never been a better time for Dundee to stake a claim to be UK City of Culture. Cultural facilities have been an important component in the city’s transformation in recent years.”

He stressed: “This would be a people’s bid, where the population of Dundee would play a major role in events that could take place. We enjoy a strength and depth of outreach programmes and local participation that already shows the enthusiasm of Dundee people for cultural activity.

“I believe we could really benefit from UK City of Culture status. Winning would attract in even more economic benefits, helping to regenerate communities and offering real opportunities for our people.”

Stewart Murdoch, the council’s director of leisure and communities, states in a report to the policy and resources committee: “Much has already been written in relation to the economic impact of European and UK City of Culture bids.

“The economic and social impacts reported for both Glasgow and Liverpool as a result of achieving European Capital of Culture are dramatic. The final outcome for Derry which has UK City of Culture status for 2013 has yet to be assessed but it has already yielded significant benefits which will continue to be built upon.”

He continues: “Dundee has already developed a strong reputation as a city which has invested in cultural-led urban renewal. Over the last decade its commitment to interagency cultural-led regeneration has been applauded at a national level. The City’s Cultural Strategy “Creative Dundee 2009-2014” highlighted successes over the past decade and opportunities for the period ahead.

“The city has a reputation for effective partnership working which is second to none and which is underpinned by its successful development of the proposal for the Waterfront Project and the V & A at Dundee which has been a defining feature of the cultural sector over the last decade.”

He adds: “Initial discussions have suggested that a bid champions group be formed, with an invitation to leading figures globally who have an association with the city to give the proposal their endorsement.”