What Does Hull Winning UK's City of Culture Award Actually Mean?

By Gary Cutlack on at

Hull. It's in the North somewhere. It sounds a bit grim and we don't really know anything about it or the names of any bands that come from there, or if it even has a decent local kind of cake or pie. So it is therefore funny that it's been name the UK's City of Culture for 2017, right?

Right. However, the once-every-four-years award does raise the profile of the cities featured, with 2013 Culture Capital Londonderry now on the world map and seeing property prices equalling that of London and New York as a result. Or perhaps not, but the award does have a positive impact on tourism (hotel bookings are up 30 per cent in Londonderry) and it allowed Londonderry to host the Turner Prize, plus optimistic Hull council leader Stephen Brady says it'll help "transform perceptions and accelerate our journey to make Hull a prime visitor destination."

And it hurts other cities that lost, too. Hull beat Swansea to the award, with Swansea council leader David Phillips quoted as saying rather bitterly that at least it means the people of Hull now "had to have something to look forward to". Nice one, Dave.

Other amusing and sightly disrespectful tweets about Hull's cultural legacy include:

We would join in with the laughing, but places like Hull and thousands of other UK towns and cities are desperately in need of help and jobs and even a minor psychological boost such as this, so... good luck, Hull. May your bunting forever flutter in the winds of change. And the campaign hashtag #HullYes was a stroke of genius. [Sky News]

Image credit: Twitter