Eurovision Song Contest 2023: The cities keen to host the competition if it comes to the UK

The UK has already hosted Eurovision numerous times, as ITV News' Geraint Vincent explains

Ukraine will not host next year's Eurovision Song Contest - meaning the UK is next in line to potentially stage competition.

The Ukrainian entry of Kalush Orchestra won the competition in Turin, Italy this year and it is traditional that the winning country hosts the event the following year.

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) has said, however, that a “full assessment and feasibility study” concluded the “security and operational guarantees” required to host cannot be met by Ukraine’s public broadcaster, UA:PBC.

As the UK were runners-up, the EBU has begun discussions with the BBC to potentially host next year. This would be the ninth time it has taken place here – more than any other country.

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In a statement posted online, the EBU shared its "sadness and disappointment" that next year’s contest cannot be held in Ukraine.

“It is our full intention that Ukraine’s win will be reflected in next year’s shows. This will be a priority for us in our discussions with the eventual hosts,” the EBU added.

Downing Street pledged to ensure the contest would “overwhelmingly reflects Ukraine’s rich culture, heritage and creativity”.

Boris Johnson has since said, however, that Ukraine "deserves" to host Eurovision next year and called on officials to reconsider their judgement.

The PM said: "This things a year away, it's going to be fine by the time the European Song Contest comes around".

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A No 10 spokesman said: “Ukraine’s victory in the Eurovision song contest was richly deserved and as the rightful winner the government’s firm wish has been to see next year’s contest hosted there.

“If the EBU decides the competition can’t go ahead in Ukraine we would of course welcome the opportunity to work closely with Ukraine and the BBC to host it here in the UK.

“But we would be committed to ensuring it overwhelmingly reflects Ukraine’s rich culture, heritage and creativity, as well as building on the ongoing partnership between our two countries.”

Asked if the government would help the BBC with the costs, the spokesman said “we’re slightly getting ahead of ourselves in terms of the process.”

Sam Ryder finished in second place in this year's competition. Credit: PA

The BBC has said it will "of course discuss the BBC hosting" the competition.

“We have seen the announcement from the EBU. Clearly these aren’t a set of circumstances that anyone would want," the broadcaster said.

"Following their decision, we will of course discuss the BBC hosting the Eurovision Song Contest.”

The UK’s Sam Ryder topped the jury vote in Turin but Ukraine’s Kalush Orchestra went on to win overall after a symbolic show of public support which saw them soar to first place with 631 points.

They had been the frontrunners since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February – which prompted organisers to ban the Russian entrant from competing.

The UK’s second place standing was thrown into doubt after the grand final when it emerged organisers had replaced six countries’ jury results with aggregate scores after noting “irregular voting patterns.”

Azerbaijan, Georgia, Montenegro, Poland, Romania and San Marino had their results substituted by the EBU.

Some of those countries have since claimed that second place would have instead gone to Spain with SloMo performed by Chanel.

But after an investigation, the EBU stuck by its decision and confirmed Ryder as runner-up.

Ukraine joined the international contest in 2003 and its three wins make it one of the most successful of the newer competitor countries – having also triumphed in 2004 and 2016.