BUSINESSES in the heart of Coventry have pledged to support the city’s bid to be crowned UK City of Culture 2021.
Shopping centres, restaurants and professional service firms based in the city have offered their support through sponsorship and financial investment to become members of the 2021 Club.
Among the eight-strong line-up are Coventry Business Improvement District, McDonalds, Lower Precinct Shopping Centre, West Orchards, Band Hatton Button, Shortland Horne, IDP and Barberry Developments.
Should Coventry be successful in winning the title, the accolade would bring major economic uplift to the city in the lead-up to and during the year.
Trish Willetts, manager of the Coventry Business Improvement District, said the title of City of Culture will be of huge value to the city centre.
She said: “We are thrilled by the level of support that has been thrown behind the City of Culture bid by city centre businesses.
“The city centre is home to several theatres, museums and numerous arts groups as well as a historic cathedral in a stunning setting, there is a real community that is working to put Coventry on the map.
“They are all excited about the bid, and we are already seeing the benefits.
“Coventry would be a very deserving winner of UK City of Culture, so we are delighted to be a part of the drive to win the title.”
A number of city centre groups have already been profiled as part of the work to showcase culture in the city – including the Belgrade, Theatre Absolute and social enterprise EGO Performance.
Laura McMillan, manager of Coventry City of Culture Trust, said: “More than 80 per cent of the people of Coventry came out in support of the bid for UK City of Culture 2021 when we announced we would be bidding.
“As well as public support, business support is vital too.
“To therefore receive the backing of so many leading companies is testament to the benefits that businesses can see it bringing to Coventry.”