today launched its bid to be Britain’s newest city.
In 2010, the Government announced that a new city would be created as part of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations next year. Many locals feel that there’s a real chance that 2012 will prove to be third time lucky in its bid for official status.
The town currently acts as city-centre for the Teesside area and the wider Tees Valley city region. With a population of 720,000 people, this is the largest conurbation in the country not served by a recognised city.
A range of partners including the Council, local businesses, and Middlesbrough Partnership, have been paving the way both for the formal part of the process, and the public campaign in the run-up to next year’s announcement. The majority of work on the bid was performed for free so the overall cost to the taxpayer is said to be in the region of £4,000.
Mayor Ray Mallon has invited primary school pupils to write to The Queen urging her to pick the town to become the UK’s newest city.
“This is a town confident of its place in history,” he said, “the young people of Middlesbrough are its future and that’s why it’s so important that they are at the heart of this campaign.”
The town is transforming itself. It has significantly improved since its last application for city status in 2002 with credentials that are first class.
“Middlesbrough already competes on an equal footing with other towns and cities across the UK and beyond, but city status will help us move forward and on to the next level,” said Mr Mallon.
The bid is also being supported by partners from across Teesside and the wider Tees Valley because of the boost that having a city would give the whole area.
Local businessman Andy Preston, of Green Lane Capital, said: “Winning the city bid would boost our confidence and fast-track our journey to becoming an exciting and energetic 21st century city.”
Everyone will have the opportunity to get involved to raise Middlesbrough’s profile both regionally and nationally, with a series of events under the banner ‘Middlesbrough – A City At Heart’.
For more information on Middlesbrough’s city status campaign, visit www.lovemiddlesbrough.com