Liverpool offers to host Eurovision Song Contest and honour Ukraine

The city emphasised its musical heritage as it became the latest UK city to show interest in staging the event.

A mural of Ringo Starr, commissioned by Liverpool artist John Culshaw, is unveiled on the gable end of the Empress Pub on Admiral Street in Liverpool (Peter Byrne/PA)

By Pat Hurst, PA

Liverpool has offered to host the next Eurovision Song Contest in solidarity with Ukraine.

The city was quick to offer itself as host after the European Broadcast Union on Friday confirmed it is looking for another location as this year’s winners, and normally the following year’s host, Ukraine, is battling invasion from Russia.

An approach to organisers has been made by Liverpool, England’s only Unesco City of Music, and the city is preparing to draw up plans which would look at options for venues and the opportunity to reflect Ukraine’s culture in a schools and communities programme.

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Mayor of Liverpool, Joanne Anderson, said: “We stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine and would like the opportunity for Liverpool to host the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest and in doing so pay tribute to their wonderful country.

“We are an events city and no one can stage a party like us.

“Culture is synonymous with Liverpool and we tick all the boxes to be next year’s host, great venues, enviable experience, a world-renowned music heritage, Unesco City of Music status and of course the warm Scouse welcome that just can’t be beaten.

“The event would become a beacon of hope around the world and we hope that Liverpool as an unrivalled music brand is given serious consideration by the decision-makers.”

General view of the River Mersey and Liverpool’s waterfront (Peter Byrne/PA).

Britain’s Sam Ryder topped the jury vote in Turin in May but Ukraine’s Kalush Orchestra went on to win overall after a symbolic show of public support which saw them soar to first place with 631 points.

Director of Culture Liverpool, Claire McColgan CBE, said: “The joy, colour and exuberance of Eurovision is intrinsically Liverpool.

“It’s a perfect match.

“This city knows how to stage an event, and more importantly how to stage it appropriately given the circumstances in which it has come to the UK.

“Liverpool is committed to doing all it can to mark, honour and promote Ukraine during the event and in doing so, ensure the global platform is used to celebrate national identity, creativity and extraordinary resolve.”

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