Havering to make bid to become London Borough of Culture

PUBLISHED: 07:00 10 July 2017

London's City Hall

London's City Hall


You could soon be living in the first ever London Borough of Culture as Havering goes head to head with the rest of the capital for the title.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan launched the competition last Friday, kick-starting the battle between the 32 boroughs for more than £1million of funding.

The money will not only be spent on staging a programme of world class cultural events and initiatives, but also to develop a plan to make culture an integral part of the boroughs’ future.

Mr Khan said: “Now, more than ever, there is a pressing need to reach out to our neighbours and celebrate London’s unique and diverse culture.

“London Borough of Culture is a great way to do just that while showing the world that our cultural gems extend way beyond the centre of the capital to all corners of the city.”

In February 2018, two will be named as London Boroughs of Culture, with one taking up the title in 2019 and the other the following year.

With the help of Community Interest Company (CIC) Made Public - based at The Retailery in Romford - since 2012, the town centre has gone from strength to strength in becoming a more cultural place to live, work and socialise.

From the Colour in Romford project brightening up the area to co-working space The Retailery regularly holding music nights and events with a twist, there are plenty of things to get involved with.

Lauren Martin of Made Public said: “It’s incredibly exciting to be bidding for London Borough of Culture.

“At Made Public, culture is at the core of everything we do and it’s great to have a chance to showcase our borough in such a positive light.”

If Havering does miss out on the top spot, there is still a chance to win funding as six other boroughs who put forward “exemplary projects” will be awarded £600,000.

A Havering Council spokeswoman says that options are being reviewed for how the local authority can develop its “cultural activities and events” that could support its bid.

The closing date for boroughs to submit their bids is December 1.

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