NEWPORT's bid to become the UK's 2025 City of Culture has been unsuccessful.

The city failed to make the eight-strong longlist that has been announced by the UK government today.

But Newport City Council said while it was disappointed to not get to the next stage, it would use the bid as a "springboard" for the "ongoing benefit of the city". 

Only one of the five applicants from Wales – Wrexham – has made it onto the longlist. Bangor, Conwy, and Powys join Newport in falling at the first hurdle.

It means Newport will miss out on the chance to secure millions of pounds of investment and attract visitors to the city for a government-backed programme of cultural events in 2025.

The city's bid was aimed at promoting "confidence and pride within our communities" and celebrating our "proud cultural tradition and heritage", Newport council leader Jane Mudd said at the time of the application.

Following the news Newport had missed out on the next round, she told the Argus: “We are naturally very disappointed that we can’t take our bid to become UK City of Culture 2025 to the next level, but it is definitely not the end of this story.

“We were overwhelmed by the level of support we received from partners and organisations large and small when developing the expression of interest. It just goes to show how passionate people are about our city and that by working together we can achieve even greater things.

“We will use this opportunity as a springboard to further develop our cultural partnerships and wider offering in Newport."


Had Newport made it onto the longlist, the city would have received £40,000 to develop a full application.

“We haven’t stood still while waiting for this announcement, so we will continue those discussions with the aim of getting many of the exciting projects under way, despite not having the added benefits the title would have brought," Cllr Mudd added.

“This was always about ensuring people feel good about living, working, visiting and investing in Newport. We still want to seize every opportunity to promote confidence and pride within our communities and to showcase Newport – and I truly feel we are now in a stronger position than ever to do so.”

The eight longlisted locations to become the 2025 City of Culture are Wrexham County Borough, Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon, Bradford, Cornwall, County Durham, Derby, Southampton, and Stirling.

They will now develop their proposals, and the winner will be announced next spring.

Simon Hart, the secretary of state for Wales, congratulated "area of huge cultural pedigree" Wrexham on reaching the next stage.

“In a fantastic field of UK City of Culture bids, Wrexham has done extremely well to fly the flag for Wales by reaching the longlist," he said.

“I wish them every success as they seek to become the first Welsh holder of the UK City of Culture title with all the opportunities it will bring."