As County Durham’s campaign to be UK City of Culture 2025 gathers pace, members of the public are being encouraged to share their favourite places.
From the picturesque woodland trail that has featured in many a happy dog walk, to the cosy corner in a much-loved coffee shop, to the local venue that staged that first unforgettable live music gig – people are invited to share photographs of the places that make the county special to them.
A visual record of the county
The aim is to create a visual record of County Durham through the eyes of the people and to reflect that sometimes hidden gems and day-to-day vistas can prove just as uplifting as the county’s spectacular views and stunning heritage sites.
To start the ball rolling, Culture Durham, the partnership of organisations including Durham County Council, Beamish Museum, Durham Cathedral, Durham University and Locomotion driving forward the bid, has selected some of its favourite views and places.
Share what you love about County Durham
A new message board has also been set up on the campaign website, where people can share what they love most about County Durham and why they believe it deserves to be named UK City of Culture 2025.
Tony Harrington, chair of Culture Durham, said: “We all have places that uplift and inspire us; special spaces where it almost feels like time stands still and we know there is nowhere in the world we would rather be at that moment.
“It could be our breath-taking heritage coast, the doors opening into your favourite venue, or the start-line of the weekly 5k run.
“Perhaps it is the bustling interior of your favourite café or the five-a-side pitch where you compete with your friends every Sunday. It might even be in your own home or allotment and the everyday creativity of growing vegetables, cooking or crafts.
“Culture enriches all of our lives and is all around us. We know Durham is no ordinary county; it is full of extraordinary people and places. UK City of Culture 2025 is a chance for us to really shout about how great our county is and, by sharing photographs of our special places, we can truly reflect the wealth of wonderful experiences on offer here.”
A title for the county and the city
Durham County Council submitted the UK City of Culture bid last month on behalf of Culture Durham. The bid is special as it aims to secure the title for Durham – both the county and the city. It is anticipated that success would significantly boost visitor numbers to the county and wider region, as well as leading to increased investment and new economic and employment opportunities.
Cllr Amanda Hopgood, Leader of Durham County Council, said: “The response we have had to the UK City of Culture 2025 bid so far has been amazing and we expect the buzz surrounding the campaign to intensify in coming weeks.
“However, for us to be successful, we need as many people as possible to fly the flag for County Durham. Please do get involved by sharing your photographs on social media and using the hashtag #Durham2025. It’s not only a brilliant way to spread the word about the campaign, but it’s a chance for us all to discover hidden gems on our doorsteps.”