Hull tells the world that there’s ‘More to the Story’ with BBC partnership

Published: Saturday 24th October 2015 by Rich Sutherland

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Hull has reached another major milestone on its journey towards UK City of Culture 2017 with the announcement of an exciting partnership with the BBC and the launch of a new brand that will tell the world, in a way that only Hull can, that there is more to the city and more to culture.

Speaking to an audience of over 500 people at Hull Truck Theatre on Friday 23 October, Hull 2017 Chief Executive, Martin Green, and BBC Director General, Lord Hall, announced the beginning of a collaboration that will ensure Hull 2017 has global reach whilst providing a lasting legacy for the people of Hull.

Martin Green, Chief Executive of Hull 2017, said: “Our partnership with the BBC is absolutely critical to the success of Hull 2017. Within the UK, it means that people across the entire country will be engaged with their national cultural festival, encouraging them to look again at Hull and at what they think of as culture.

“Internationally, the BBC is one of the most powerful tools we have to create a global interaction with our stories. Hull 2017 will be a 365-day festival of the most compelling and ambitious cultural experiences that the UK has to offer and, with the BBC on board, we will be able to share those experiences with the whole world.”

Lord Hall said: “I’m proud to announce our partnership today. The BBC is going to be unashamedly ‘Hull-centric’ in 2017. We are really looking forward to working with Hull 2017 to create something very special for the city and for audiences around the world.

“I want the BBC in Hull to be a powerhouse of creativity. I want us to work with Hull City of Culture 2017 to try new things, to push boundaries and take risks. We want to experiment, innovate and help talent in Hull find their voice.

“I recently set out our case for an open, enabling BBC that supports creativity in all kinds of ways. I want the BBC to be at the heart of Hull’s big year because I recognise that by working closely together as equal partners we can achieve so much more.”

The BBC’s activities for Hull 2017 will include:

  • A world-class celebration of poetry, performance and the spoken word – shaped and made in Hull and inspired by the city’s rich poetry heritage, which includes the likes of Andrew Marvel and Philip Larkin
  • BBC Learning will be working with schools and organisations across the city to deliver targeted projects to inspire and create educational opportunities for the city’s young people
  • BBC Writers Room will be looking for writers – new and established – to develop stories inspired by Hull
  • Some of the BBC’s biggest events will come to the city during 2017 and the BBC will create new ones.

Hull’s ambition to secure a lasting legacy for its year as UK City of Culture was highlighted by other speakers at the event, including Hull City Council Leader, Stephen Brady, who is driving the regeneration of the city through the delivery of a £100m cultural capital programme.

Councillor Brady said: “We are determined to ensure that Hull is well placed to capitalise on this once-in-a-generation opportunity to harness culture to improve our economy and people’s lives. The partnership between Hull 2017 and the BBC will make an important contribution to that and I am very excited about the possibilities it will open up for young people in our city.”

The event also saw the launch of the new Hull, UK City of Culture 2017 brand, which uses the city’s down-to-earth, provocative, yet welcoming, quintessentially Northern character to communicate its central message of “there’s more to the story”. Created by Yorkshire creative agency, Jaywing, and informed by over 400 conversations with local people, the brand is rooted in the culture and personality of the city.

Martin Green added: “Our brand for 2017 is the way we will export the voice and personality of Hull across the UK and beyond. It’s also an important tool we use to raise our funding and engage communities across the city.

“People from Hull, and those who know this city, understand that it cannot be defined by a single story or idea. There is always more to the story.

“As we get ready to welcome the world in 2017, our brand will invite people to look again at the city as we reveal its cultural DNA through our marketing.

“Our aim is to show people that Hull is a place that inspires and celebrates culture in all of its diverse forms, a place that invites debate about the meaning and nature of culture – a great Northern city that has much to say and is not afraid to say it out loud.”

Closing the event, the Hull 2017 Chief Executive set out how the build up to 2017 will accelerate next year, confirming that a new digital platform for the city and the start of volunteer recruitment will begin early in the New Year. Further announcements will follow over the coming months on funding partnerships and a new Business Club will be launched to allow smaller businesses to get involved. The company will continue to work with local artists, festivals and cultural venues to build capacity and bring their work to a wider audience. The intensive work to develop and confirm the artistic programme for 2017 will continue and September 2016 will see the launch of the first ‘Made in Hull’ season and highlights for the full year.

He also confirmed that the Hull 2017 Programme Fund will be introduced with the aim of inspiring individuals and groups to produce new work and events for 2017. Details of the fund will be available in the New Year, with applications opening in the spring for decisions by July 2016. Large and small projects will be considered, with most grants to be made between £300 and £10,000, though there may be exceptions for more ambitious projects.

Published: Saturday 24th October 2015 by Rich Sutherland

Comments (1)
  • John E Pallister BA

    Do seriously think the ‘world’ is interested about our little out of the way place….come on wake up and smell the coffee.

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