Ipswich and the Haven Gateway submit bid for UK City of Culture 2013
The competition to become the UK's first City of Culture in 2013 will enter its next stage on Friday when Ipswich and the Haven Gateway will submit their bid.
The bid will reflect the fact that for thousands of years the aesthetic of this area - its landscapes, its coast, its skies, its rivers, its light - has inspired, and continues to inspire, artists and creative people to live, work and visit this area. The proposal outlines an outstanding programme of initiatives, entitled EAST 2013, which will open the nation's eyes to what we have to offer.
The bid unites Ipswich and Colchester, the principal urban areas of the Haven Gateway, the three world-class cultural hubs of Aldeburgh Music, the Jerwood DanceHouse (Ipswich) and FirstSite (Colchester) - and the surrounding diverse rural and coastal communities.
David Ralph, Chief Executive of the Haven Gateway Partnership commented: "The bid will be built around a vibrant and challenging artistic programme rooted in the rich heritage of the Haven Gateway and its landscape and seascape, which has inspired - and continues to inspire - artists such as Constable, Benjamin Britten (whose centenary will be in 2013), and Maggi Hambling. The programme will acknowledge the unique maritime influence on the sub-region through the development of a major festival celebrating the coast and rivers."
The events and activities planned will be based around four 'headline events' which highlight what is truly distinctive about the Ipswich and the Haven Gateway bid. These are: Inspired by...; Sunrise; Birth of Britain and Festivals.
Inspired by... Celebrating the inspirational landscape of the Haven Gateway and the influence it has had (and continues to have) over artists.
Sunrise symbolises bringing people together to experience and see their surroundings in a new light and a different way.
Birth of Britain highlights the historical importance of the area, looking at Ipswich and Colchester's 'claim to fame' as the first Roman, and first Anglo-Saxotown respectively.
Finally Festival celebrates 'festival life' across the Haven Gateway, building on successes and coordinating activity across the area.
It is expected that the shortlist of five will be announced in January or February 2010 with final bids being submitted in May next year.