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City status bid

Middlesbrough submitted a bid to become a city as part of the Queen's Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

This year will be one of royal celebration as Her Majesty the Queen marks 70 years as reigning monarch. As part of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations, towns across the UK were invited to bid for city status.

Middlesbrough Council led a bid to have the honour bestowed on our town.

Unfortunately we were unsuccessful. Middlesbrough Mayor Andy Preston has sent his congratulations to the eight new cities:

  • Bangor, Northern Ireland
  • Colchester, England
  • Doncaster, England
  • Douglas, Isle of Man
  • Dunfermline, Scotland
  • Milton Keynes, England
  • Stanley, Falkland Islands
  • Wrexham, Wales.
Albert Park, Middlesbrough

A walk through the trees on a glorious day in Albert Park


The bid

Putting together a bid for city status was an exciting opportunity to show off Middlesbrough’s strengths.

The government set out clear guidelines for the evidence we had to provide.

It was a fun process and we had the chance to talk about Middlesbrough’s distinct identity, civic pride, heritage, history and traditions.

We also detailed our record of innovation – from our industrial beginnings right through to our present day digital pioneers – and our vibrant and welcoming community.

And we set out Middlesbrough’s Royal associations, proudly looking back on previous visits from the Royal Family.

We also had the difficult job of narrowing down a list of notable figures from Middlesbrough who have made significant contributions to society.

There was also a focus on statistics, like our population and economic activity.

The bid highlights our green spaces, sport and leisure facilities, and our close links with the voluntary sector.

That’s a lot to cram into roughly 20 pages!

As part of the bid we could also submit up to 50 photographs. The guidance stated they should be of places within the area that would be the city centre.

You can read the bid in full here:

Middlesbrough City Bid 2021