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Delia Smith backs Norwich City of Culture bid

PUBLISHED: 18:30 15 May 2010 | UPDATED: 16:31 01 July 2010

Delia Smith is backing Norwich's City of Culture bid

Delia Smith is backing Norwich's City of Culture bid

Peter Walsh

Celebrity cookery queen Delia Smith today added her voice to those backing Norwich in its bid to become the UK's first city of culture.

The Norwich City joint majority shareholder has been celebrating the football club's on the field success as the team swept all before them in League One to clinch the title with two games to spare.

Celebrity cookery queen Delia Smith today added her voice to those backing Norwich in its bid to become the UK's first city of culture.

The Norwich City joint majority shareholder has been celebrating the football club's on the field success as the team swept all before them in League One to clinch the title with two games to spare.

And Delia, who celebrated Paul Lambert's team's success along with more than 35,000 other fans at the open topped bus parade and civic reception at Norwich Castle on Thursday, said she hoped the city soon had another reason to celebrate.

She said: “I fully support that (the city of culture bid). Football is part of culture because football is a beautiful game - 11 people playing against each other is a very beautiful thing.”

Delia said that while football might not traditionally be thought of in the same way that a “beautiful music” or a beautiful painting is, it was still an important part of the city's cultural heritage and should be celebrated and revered in the same way.

Delia, a national treasure who this year celebrated 40 years on our televisions with a series of TV commercials for Waitrose, is not the only chef to have given the campaign a boost.

Earlier this year the Evening News reported how celebrity chef Marco Pierre White leant his support to Norwich's bid to be UK City of Culture in 2013.

The charismatic character, who was the youngest chef ever to receive three Michelin stars, said he would like to see Norwich win the competition and called on Delia to add her support.

Speaking to the Evening News in April, he said: “I'm backing the City of Culture bid. Norwich have got to win. All those big prominent cities get everything but there are a lot of cities in Britain that need to get recognition like this - Norwich is one of them and it could be an example to the others. It's a very gentle city with great culture and great food, especially Delia, the queen of Norwich. She should put her weight behind it.

“When you think of food critics it's all about London, but there is a lot of great food outside the capital. I have fond memories of a restaurant called Marco's in Norwich where I had some fantastic meals. I love all the castle turrets and little walls hanging around the city. You can walk around a corner and find history staring you in the face.”

Other stars to have backed Norwich's bid for the title include Stephen Fry, Simon Callow, and Christopher Biggins. The title is being contested by Norwich, Birmingham, Sheffield and Derry/Londonderry. Each shortlisted city has just until May 21 to submit their final bid for the title. The bids must deliver a high quality cultural programme that can be a worthy successor to Liverpool's year as European Capital of Culture in 2008 and the Cultural Olympiad in 2012.

For more City of Culture stories visit www.eveningnews24.co.uk/culture. Have you got a story for the campaign? Call reporter Peter Walsh on 01603 772436 or email peter.walsh@archant.co.uk

How to Back the Bid

The people behind Norwich's bid to be City of Culture in 2013 say it's vital for everyone in the city to get involved - whether it's by showing your support online, volunteering your time or talents, bringing attention to groups you already work with, or simply by spreading the word about our fine city and all it has to offer.

Here are some ways to get started:

Send your ideas or volunteer to contribute by emailing cityofculture@norwich.gov.uk.

Tell us about events, projects or groups you're involved with by calling 01603 772418 or emailing mary.hamilton@archant.co.uk.

Tell us why you're backing the bid by emailing mary.hamilton@archant.co.uk or calling 01603 772418.

Show your support and let us know about events happening where you are by joining the Norwich 2013 Facebook group at www.tinyurl.com/Norwich-2013.

Follow the Evening News Back the Bid campaign on Twitter at www.twitter.com/norwichculture.

Read more about the City of Culture bid at www.en24.co.uk/culture.

Get involved at the official website at www.norwichcityofculture.co.uk.

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