City of Culture judges set to meet

Mary HamiltonThe team behind Norwich's bid to be the first UK City of Culture is heading to Liverpool this week to persuade the judges that Norwich deserves the title.Support Norwich on FacebookOfficial Norwich 2013 bid websiteMary Hamilton

The team behind Norwich's bid to be the first UK City of Culture is heading to Liverpool this week to persuade the judges that Norwich deserves the title.

The bid team will be meeting the judges on Wednesday to answer questions about their proposal, which is called 'A Whole City Experiment'.

Norwich is up against Birmingham, Sheffield and Derry/Londonderry in the final selection for the title, which would bring a year-long international arts festival to the city and could be worth up to �215m for the local economy.

The details of Norwich's bid are still a closely guarded secret until the competitive stage of the process is over, but it does include pop concerts, light shows, and street parties that would involve all the diverse communities in the city.

The programme would also include education programmes, a volunteering network and the creation of the country's first city-wide free data download zone, in which it would be free to access City of Culture information and news wirelessly.

Norwich was the bookies' favourite to win the title at 6/4, and a host of local businesses and cultural organisations - along with a fair few famous names - have signed up to back the bid.

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The delegation to Liverpool includes Norfolk and Norwich Festival director Jonathan Holloway, Marcus Patteson from Norwich Community Arts, Ian Johnson from Access to Music and Chris Gribble, chief executive of the Writers Centre Norwich.

City council leader Steve Morphew and chief executive Laura McGillivray will also be joining the delegation along with a host of other people who have worked on the bid behind the scenes.

Famous names who have thrown their weight behind Norwich's bid include actor writer and TV host Stephen Fry, writers Ian McEwan, Frederick Forsyth and Amit Chaudhuri, actress Miranda Raison, and celebrity chefs Delia Smith and Marco Pierre White.

And with just two days left before the judges retire to consider their decision, the Evening News asked the people of Norwich why they thought the city deserved the culture title.

With just two days left to show your support for the bid, here's how you can get involved.

Blogging and writing about your support for the bid is one excellent way to keep the ball rolling and show that you care about the bid coming to the city.

Add comments about your experience or work with Norwich culture at, and upload Youtube videos and images in support of the bid too.

Send ideas, comments and support to - your contributions are still needed to help make Norwich an even better place to live, work and visit over the next few years.

Join the Norwich 2013 Facebook group at and help us find 2013 reasons to bring the City of Culture title to Norwich at

Follow the official Twitter feed at and the Evening News Back the Bid campaign at

Read more stories about the bid at

Tell the Evening News about events, projects or groups you're involved with, and why you're backing the bid, by emailing or calling 01603 772418.

Support Norwich on FacebookOfficial Norwich 2013 bid website