‘More than an event in an arena’ - why Liverpool should be host city for Eurovision Song Contest 2023

The director for Culture Liverpool lays out why the international music event should come to the city and you tell us your opinions.

The Eurovision Song Contest will take place in the UK in 2023 and Liverpool has made an official offer to host the event.

Rap-folk band Kalush Orchestra won the 2022 competition for Ukraine but the nation can’t host next year’s event due to the ongoing war following Russia’s invasion.

The UK finished as runner-up in the voting with Sam Ryder’s song Space Man and has been chosen as the replacement location.

It’s not yet known which city will host Eurovision 2023 but Liverpool City Council has put its name in the hat.

The city is currently fifth in the betting, behind Birmingham, London, Manchester and favourites Glasgow, but Liverpool has everything required to host a brilliant Eurovision in 2023.

Culture, venues, atmosphere and party vibe

Claire McColgan, director, Culture Liverpool, said: “Liverpool has both a great party vibe and atmosphere; we know how to come out for big events, we know how to support them, but also it's got real compassion. So, in terms of how it works for the communities and how we can do stuff that is much more than an event in an arena is very Liverpool.

Claire McColgan, director of culture Liverpool.

“The combination of both those things is absolutely why Liverpool should host it, that and we can put on a great event as people know."

After making its offer, Liverpool Council confirmed earlier last month that it was drawing up plans looking at options for venues, including the 11,000-seater M&S Bank Arena.

Ms McColgan added: “Everything is bleak at the moment, isn’t it? We can all feel that. I think just having something like this to look forward to it’s a really good thing for the city.

“I remember when I did European Capital of Culture when it came to the year the whole city came out to support it. We count that as the moment the city changed in 2008. In the city, we get why culture is so important, and we’re really good at working towards things together.”

The cost of hosting Eurovision 2023

It has been previously reported that staging the annual music event would set Liverpool back around £2 million, though Ms McColgan says at the moment they aren't sure of costs.

She said: "I think we'll know from the bid how much is expected from each location, but everyone is in the same position because no one has any money. So the government will have to support that happening."

The BBC and the European Broadcasting Union will publish the longlist later this summer.