Wednesday 16th August 2017

It’s official – Nottingham has confirmed it will bid to be European Capital of Culture 2023. Competing against Belfast, Dundee, Leeds, and Milton Keynes, Nottingham’s European Capital of Culture 2023 bid team is confident Nottingham’s entry will be heavily supported by people across the Midlands and beyond, and is calling on locals to become Nottingham 2023 ‘Cultural Lions’.

Paul Russ, chairman of Nottingham’s Cultural Strategy Partnership and chair of the Nottingham 2023 board said: “The lions outside the Council House have been a local meeting, gathering and rallying point for decades, we are a proud and inclusive city and urge people of all backgrounds to ‘join our pride’ and help us get to the next stage of the bid by becoming ‘Cultural Lions’.

“Nottingham is an ambitious, young and diverse city with a culture of grassroots collaboration and a history of rebellious innovation.
“As part of the bid, we want to give everyone in Nottingham the opportunity to take part in a project, production or experience and nurture the next generation of creative producers and cultural leaders.

“We’re proposing a ‘cultural change’ programme that will transform the lives of people in the Midlands; harnessing the power of creativity, stimulating innovation, attracting investment and creating new international networks that will redefine our relationship to Europe and the world.”

Nottingham Playhouse’s Chief Executive Stephanie Sirr said: “Nottingham Playhouse has been a proud partner with European Theatre for decades – we’ve seen the wonderful benefits to our city of working in partnership. The work of Nottingham Playhouse appears all over the world – we currently have a show in Australia, one in New York and another in London’s West End. Nottingham is a world-class city and Capital of Culture will drive that message home in the most exciting and forward-looking way.”

The city and surrounding county has a history of pioneering new ways of thinking and working together, from the legend of Robin Hood, computing pioneer Ada Lovelace, and the writings of DH Lawrence, Alan Sillitoe and Jon McGregor, to the work of fashion designer Sir Paul Smith, singer-songwriter Jake Bugg, and nationally celebrated theatremakers including our Artistic Director Designate Adam Penford, Emma Rice and Jenny Sealey.

Nottingham Playhouse is proud to be backing the bid.

For more information and to show your support visit