Image: Getty

Following Monday’s announcement that the United Kingdom will host Eurovision 2023, the conversation has quickly turned to which city should have the honour of hosting the competition. Within less than 24 hours, two previous Eurovision champions have stepped forward and named the city they think would be best for the job.

Cheryl Baker, who won Eurovision in 1981 as part of Bucks Fizz, has put her weight behind Wales’s capital city Cardiff. Meanwhile, Glasgow is the city of choice for Lulu, joint winner of Eurovision 1969.

Eurovision 1997 champion Katrina Leskanich (of Katrina and the Waves) has also shown support for Manchester.

Cheryl Baker suggests Cardiff should host Eurovision 2023

Speaking on Tuesday’s BBC Breakfast, Cheryl Baker noted only those cities that have appropriate infrastructure would make feasible choices of host:

“It needs to go to a city where there’s an international airport, where they’ve got a venue that’s big enough, where there are enough hotels, so any one of those would work.”

Even though the “Making Your Mind Up” hitmaker lives relatively close to the UK’s largest city, she suggested it would be worth looking somewhere else:

“I think it would be nice if it didn’t go to London although, for me, I live in Kent, I’m half an hour from London. So for me, that would be perfect!

“But would be nice if it went to [a] regional… I fancy Cardiff, I think that would be nice. Like you say, the land of song.”

Regardless of which British city is eventually chosen, Baker is still keen to see the reigning Eurovision champions Ukraine have a strong identity in the shows:

“As long as Ukraine are completely involved, as long as their presenters… we’ve basically given them the shell to do it in my opinion, I think their production teams and their presenters and everything should be totally involved.

“It’s just like we’re giving them the venue to use, that’s what I think.”

Lulu backs hometown Glasgow to host

On Monday evening, Eurovision 1969 champion Lulu also voiced her opinion whilst on BBC Two’s Newsnight. The “Boom Bang-a-Bang” singer grew up in Dennistoun, a residential district of Glasgow. Therefore, the star is putting all her support behind Scotland’s most populous city:

“It has to be Glasgow because that’s where I come from. They’re so politically savvy, they’re the most fabulous hosts, they absolutely are music mad. I think it would be just the most fabulous thing, and I would be there. I just cannot wait.”

When asked if she had a particular venue within Glasgow in mind, Lulu wasn’t so sure: “Maybe it’s a football pitch … they wouldn’t. It has to be a stadium I feel, do you? I don’t really know, that’s not my side of things.”

One person who definitely does have a proposed venue in Glasgow is First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon. She’s previously expressed her support for bringing Eurovision 2023 to the banks of the River Clyde, referencing OVO Hydro.

Katrina Leskanich shows support for Manchester

Update 21:24 BST: Another of the UK’s Eurovision winners to publicly show support for a city is 1997 champion Katrina Leskanich. Whilst on BBC Radio 5 Live, the Katrina and the Waves frontwoman went on record saying Manchester would be a prime choice to host Eurovision 2023:

“[There are] just some cities that are just crying out to host and I think Manchester is one of them. It would be at the very top of my list as it meets all of the criteria.”

Leskanich added that the city’s infrastructure and Gay Village were clear examples of how Manchester had “everything you need and it is a great party city”.

@wiwibloggs_official #Eurovision is officially coming back to the #UK 🇬🇧 #ESC #ESC2023 #Eurovision2023 #UnitedKingdom #Ukraine ♬ original sound – wiwibloggs

The host city for Eurovision 2023 will be chosen in the coming months following a bidding process to be launched this week.

Bidding is expected to be competitive, with several mayors, councillors and MPs already informally expressing an intention to bid, including representatives from: Aberdeen, Belfast, Birmingham, Brighton, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Manchester, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Newcastle, Nottingham, Sheffield and Wolverhampton.

As well as selling their vision for a fantastic contest, potential host cities are expected to demonstrate that they can meet a list of expectations.

Last year, the EBU’s host city criteria was based on providing a venue able to accommodate at least 10,000 spectators (as well as a press centre), that should be within easy reach of an international airport and with ample hotel accommodation.

Do you agree with either Cheryl Baker or Lulu? Would Cardiff or Glasgow make a good host city for Eurovision 2023? Let us know in the comments below.

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Fatima
Fatima
11 days ago

Glad to see Lulu being interested in Eurovision again

Zisk
Zisk
12 days ago

Hey remember when they said there was never a hope of this happening because the contest is too political and Brexit means that everyone hates the UK?

Crystal
12 days ago

I like what Sam Ryder said in his reaction video to the news, which was something along the lines of, “It’s Ukraine’s party, we’re just letting them have it at our house.” For that reason, I don’t think Wales should host this time (there are some indoor arenas in Wales, but they all are too small for what the EBU typically looks for; the Principality Stadium is the only venue with capacity of over 10,000 and a retractable roof). I’d save the possibility of Wales hosting for a year following a UK victory.

Henno
Henno
12 days ago
Reply to  Crystal

No it’s not just Ukraine’s party – our money is paying for it, so it’s our party too.

HarpyDarper
HarpyDarper
12 days ago
Reply to  Crystal

There’s the Motorpoint in Cardiff, which is showing its age and was probably too small even in 1998. Then recently opened the Swansea Arena and the Newport ICC, both very modest and nowhere near enough for ESC. The satidum is far too vast, but there are plans for a ritzy new 15,000 seater in Cardiff Bay- give it five years or so!

Stephanie
13 days ago

Katrina (UK 1997) is backing Manchester

Pauly
Pauly
13 days ago

Cheryl doesn’t like London? No surprises there, she campaigned for Brexit. She wants her 5 minute fame.

Jofty
Jofty
12 days ago
Reply to  Pauly

If Bucks Fizz are an interval act do you think Cheryl’s girdle will be ripped/welded off (by the Fire Brigade)?

Hello hi
Hello hi
13 days ago

Cardiff doesn’t have a suitable venue

Voilà monsieur
Voilà monsieur
13 days ago
Reply to  Hello hi

the Principality Stadium holds 70k+ spectators (w/ retractable roof)

Pauly
Pauly
13 days ago

EBU (and i bet BBC) would never agree to do the contest in a massive stadium like the one you mentioned. It’s going to be an arena and UK has plenty of them.

Henno
Henno
12 days ago
Reply to  Pauly

Course they would… a venue is a venue and the crowd specification has no upper limit. Check 2001…. 38,000 Danes….

Sam
Sam
12 days ago
Reply to  Pauly

You could split it in half like they do in Friends Arena for Melfest – gives the possibility for things like dressing rooms or even the Green Room to be behind the stage on the other side of the stadium. You don’t have to use all of the stadium for seating and stage

Whisker
Whisker
13 days ago

Tug of war please! Draw two pairs and have the winners in the finals!! The winning nation gets to host!!!