The BBC has not yet made its Eurovision 2023 host city decision and everything is still left to play for. That’s the message that Claire McColgan from Culture Liverpool delivered recently in an interview about the host city bidding process.
Speaking a day after officials from the EBU and the BBC visited the city, she explained that they were looking into details about the bid venue — the M&S Bank Arena and the nearby ACC Liverpool convention centre. She pointed out the Labour Party recently held its conference in the ACC, so the site looked spectacular.
Given the relatively late start with planning this year, because of the war in Ukraine, she explained how organisers — at the EBU, the BBC and the eventual host city — face a time crunch.
“You’re putting a show on somewhere — a massive show, one of the biggest shows in the world — and you’re doing it in seven months rather than a year. So they haven’t got a year to plan, so things have got to move very quickly and we’ve got a lot of moving about to do.”
Some have suggested online that Glasgow has already won it, and that the BBC is just going through the motions so it looks like a contest. But Claire isn’t having any of that. She confirmed that there will be another visit from the BBC next week.
“The BBC aren’t stupid,” she said. “This is a lot of work for them. It would have been really easy for them to go ‘Glasgow.’ They haven’t made their decision. If they’d made their decision they would have just gone with one of us. I don’t believe a decision has been made up to this point, because why would you bother?”
Claire is confident that Liverpool can pull it off.
“If we get it, we just have to go straight into it. In some ways, I absolutely know we can deliver this. We’ve got the team to deliver it here…our in-house team that are really world class in terms of delivering major events. It’ll be really hard, but you’re working with really experienced organisations who have done it before, but also are the best in the world, aren’t they? I’m not worried about putting it on.”
She also cited the strength of the city’s cultural offer, saying that they’ve built “a brilliant programme around Ukraine, which we’re really excited about, and our relationship with Odesa.”
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