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Stars back Waltham Forestís culture prize bid

by Natalie Vincent Tue 10 October 2017, 5:26 pm

Key figures from the arts and entertainment world have backed Waltham Forest's bid for the London Borough of Culture 2019 award in July.

Image courtesy of Waltham Forest Council

Blur's Damon Albarn, author and journalist Dreda Say Mitchell, photographer David Bailey CBE and ballet master Sir Matthew Bourne have all lent their support for the borough’s submission in a joint letter signed by 50 artists.

Bailey said: "Waltham Forest is an example of London at its cultural best, as a vibrant and growing hub for artists, performers and creative start-ups. Not only would winning the title of London's first Borough of Culture bring valuable investment here, it would also provide the much-deserved recognition and support for Waltham Forest's artistic and entrepreneurial communities."

Following a similar model to the UK City of Culture awards, this will be the first time a London borough will be recognised for its cultural impact and importance, with a prize of £1 million awarded to the winning authority to be spent on local culture events and initiatives.

Waltham Forest's bid was launched by the artists Bob and Roberta Smith at the Walthamstow Garden Party in Lloyd Park on 1 July, which was attended by about 30,000 people.

The borough launched its "150 Cultural Gems of Waltham Forest" initiative in the run-up to the announcement on 2 December, where 150 events, highlights and local landmarks will be promoted for consideration by the Mayor of London’s office.

The competition closes on 1 December.

To see Waltham Forest's bid for the award, please click here

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