Norfolk actress backs culture bid
Mary HamiltonNorfolk-born actress and Spooks star Miranda Raison has added her support to the bid to make Norwich the first UK City of Culture in 2013.Support Norwich on FacebookOfficial Norwich 2013 bid websiteMary Hamilton
Norfolk-born actress and Spooks star Miranda Raison has added her support to the bid to make Norwich the first UK City of Culture in 2013.
Ms Raison, who recently starred in ITV1 show Married, Single Other and has also appeared in Doctor Who, said she was proud to be from Norfolk, and that she hoped more people would discover what Norwich has to offer as a result of her support.
The 29-year-old, who grew up in Burnham Thorpe, also said she hoped the bid could help the county shake off the Alan Partridge image in the eyes of the rest of the country.
'Often I say to people that I'm from Norfolk and they think of a negative,' she said. 'But whenever I bring people back here they say, my god, I had no idea it was so lovely or so beautiful or had such an amazing atmosphere.
'I've always been very proud of my roots and I want to tell people, actually, Norfolk is great.
'Although I didn't live in Norwich, when I was young it was where I always went at the weekends and I know and love the city well.
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'There is a huge culture of copying at the moment in a lot of places, but Norwich is very much a culture of individuals - it's much more diverse and much more original.
'It has this cultural underground which you expect in Europe, in places like Madrid. You don't expect it over here, and people are really surprised when they find out about the music and the art and everything that goes on in Norwich.'
Ms Raison said she thought the City of Culture bid would help make more people aware of what the city has to offer, and that Norwich was in with a good chance of winning.
'I've been to two of the other competitors, Sheffield and Birmingham, and I think we're a good mix of the two,' she said. 'Norwich has both the old cobbled-y feel of Sheffield and the modern exciting feel of Birmingham.
'I just think it's important to hold my hand up and say I'm from this place, and you might not think much about it but it's great, and obviously people agree if we are down to the final four for the City of Culture.
'If that does anything to raise awareness and get people to come here that's wonderful. Norwich does different and I'm very proud of it.'
Ms Raison said she would be returning to Norfolk later this month as a judge for a camel race in Fakenham.
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