Bradford UK City of Culture 2025 is to receive funding of at least £10 million from the Government.
The investment will support the delivery of Bradford’s programme of cultural activity over the year – ranging from live performances in existing cultural venues to pop-up experiences in a bespoke touring venue, Beacon.
The campaign is expected to showcase approximately 1,000 performances by local artists and creatives. They are expected to attract more than 15m visitors in 2025 and bring an additional visitor spend of £136.9m into the local economy over the course of the year.
The funding supports the Government’s aim to grow the local Bradford economy by £389m. The campaign is also expected to create 6,845 new jobs and opportunities across the city by 2030.
Arts Council England is allocating £5m in National Lottery funding to support Bradford’s programme during its tenure as UK City of Culture. The National Lottery Heritage Fund has also confirmed it is awarding £4.95m specifically to develop a programme of activities in 2025.
The Government’s announcement comes on the 10-year anniversary of the UK City of Culture programme, with the first host being Derry-Londonderry in 2013, followed by Hull in 2017 and Coventry in 2021.
Culture Minister Stuart Andrew said, “With its unique culture and young and vibrant population, Bradford will be a fantastic host for the UK City of Culture 2025. We want to open up access to the arts, create opportunities for young people, and inspire our next generation of writers, artists and performers.”
Arts Council England chief executive Darren Henley said, “This investment will have a huge impact on the lives of the people who live, work and study in the city – as well as thousands of visitors over the coming years. I’m on the edge of my seat, eager to see and hear how Bradford’s journey of amazing creativity will unfold.”
Bradford Metropolitan District Council leader Cllr Susan Hinchcliffe said, “Now is our time, time for Bradford to shine and become a beacon for what’s great about Yorkshire, and about the North. We will also be the largest, most ambitious and the first district wide City of Culture bid ever so we also remain optimistic that we will see more funding of this sort from Government in the near future to help us fully realise the opportunity that being the UK City of Culture in 2025 brings.”