Edinburgh will consider bidding to host Eurovision 2023 after organisers announce it's coming to UK
Edinburgh is to consider mounting a bid to host next year’s Eurovision Song Contest after organisers confirmed it would be held in the UK rather than Ukraine.
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But council leader Cammy Day signalled the Capital could end up as part of a joint bid with Glasgow.
The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) announced the UK would host Eurovision 2023 following its decision last month that the event could not be held in the war-torn Ukraine following the Russian invasion, despite Ukrainian entry Kalush Orchestra winning this year's competition.
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The bidding process to select the host city will begin this week and will be jointly managed by the BBC and EBU. The winning city will require a large events space, suitable accommodation and international transport links for the competing countries and their delegations.
London, Manchester and Sheffield were among the first to announce they would be bidding for the contest.
And council leader Cammy Day issued a statement saying the Capital will consider a bid to stage the competition again.
He said: “Edinburgh had the pleasure of hosting Eurovision 50 years ago at our very own Usher Hall – the first time it had been held outside London. Of course, I’d far rather the event was being held in Kyiv but, as its sister city and new home to many thousands of Ukrainians, Edinburgh would be a fitting host. Clearly, the scale of the event has grown since 1972, but we’ll look at all options and make a decision on whether to bid as soon as we can.”
But earlier, Councillor Day had tweeted: “Time for Edinburgh and Glasgow to work together to bring @Eurovision to our cities as United Kingdom to host Eurovision Song Contest 2023.”
Details of what the host city will need to offer have not yet been set out.
Glasgow also previously expressed an interest in hosting the contest at the city's OVO Hydro arena and First Minister Nicola Sturgeon gave her backing to the idea at the time, tweeting: "I can think of a perfect venue on banks of the River Clyde!!"
Lothian Tory MSP Miles Briggs pledged his support for a bid from the Capital.
He said: “It has now been confirmed that Eurovision will be held in the United Kingdom next year and Edinburgh would be an excellent destination for hosting the event.
“Edinburgh has a strong track record of holding international events, including the 17th Eurovision Song Contest back in 1972.
“Kyiv and Edinburgh have been sister cities for over 30 years and it would be a nice touch for the capital to host Eurovision, with Ukraine understandably unable to hold the competition.
“I have written to Edinburgh Council backing a bid for Edinburgh to host Eurovision 2023.”
Ukraine was unhappy about the EBU’s decision to relocate next year’s contest.
But BBC director-general Tim Davie said: "The BBC is committed to making the event a true reflection of Ukrainian culture alongside showcasing the diversity of British music and creativity."