NI cities’ joint bid for European Capital of Culture hits setback
LONDONDERRY and Belfast cannot both be official European Capital of Culture, it has emerged.
A joint bid by the cities to secure the title for 2023 was launched in July by Lord Mayor of Belfast Nuala McAllister and Derry and Strabane mayor Maoliosa McHugh.
At a meeting of Derry and Strabane Council’s business and culture committee it was noted only one city can hold the title.
Vice chair of the committee Derek Hussey (UUP) said he had suspected that not everything had been made clear in previous presentations. following the scare.
The incident came less than a week after George’s first day on September 7.
A police spokesman said: “The arrest at 14.15hrs on Wednesday, September 13, relates to an incident at Thomas’s Battersea School on Tuesday, September 12 when an individual gained access to its premises.
“The arrested woman was taken to a south London police station where she remains in custody.
“We are working with
“I had my reservations in regard to the joint bid, believing of course that Londonderry had the capacity and the expertise to take forward a bid in their own right,” he said.
“But the decision was made within Derry and Strabane District Council to bring forward a joint bid.”
Mr Hussey said it was now a question of which city would go forward as the official applicant, and what guarantees could be made to the partner city.
“The important aspect is to ensure that we have a coherent and understandable submission going to stage two, and one that is mindful of all the partners involved in the process,” he added.
Derry and Strabane District the school, which is attended by Prince George, to review its security arrangements after the incident.
“Police were alerted and officers attended immediately after the issue came to light.
“Police are part of the protective security arrangements for the prince and we will continue to work closely with the school, which is responsible for building security on its site.”
A Kensington Palace spokeswoman said: “We are aware of the issue, but we would not comment further on security matters.” Council said: “The commitment from the councils is to work together with Europe through culture to make our cities better places for our citizens and future generations.
“The councils will consider the final detail of the stage one bid book in the coming weeks and continue with their strong working partnership.”
Belfast City Council said: “Both cities are fully represented in the bid content and we will continue to work in close partnership to ensure that programming and delivery is linked to attract the maximum benefits for each.
“Both councils will consider papers on the European Capital of Culture bid on September 22.”
Prince George was back at school yesterday and (left) his first day with the Duke of Cambridge and Helen Haslem, head of the lower school, at Thomas’s Battersea
Decision: Derek Hussey