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Medway launches bid to become the 'UK City of Culture' in 2025

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Medway is launching a bid to become the 'UK City of Culture' in 2025.

The area - made up of the five towns surrounding the River Medway - hopes to attract widespread support based on its cultural heritage, business background and a record of staging Sporting events.

All this despite the fact that Medway is not actually a city!

  • Watch this report by Derek Johnson:

High hopes here in Rochester, where the campaign begins to make Medway the 'UK City of Culture' in six years time.

Central to the initiative, the area's impressive cultural heritage: Charlies Dickens loved and wrote about Rochester.

  • Cllr Alan Jarrett, Leader Medway Council, Con

Medway is keen to promote it's links to innovative business.

As well as to it's rich history, symbolised by the historic dockyard at Chatham, when navy ships were built for centuries.

Chatham Historic Dockyard Credit: ITV Meridian
  • Bill Ferris, Chief Executive Chatham Historic Dockyard:

Other cities have benefitted to the tune of millions of pounds by being designated as a centre of culture.

Rochester became a city in the 13th century but lost that coveted status in the 1990's due to an apparent administrative oversight, when the towns around the area merged to create the Medway Unitary Authority.

Technically Medway isn't a city, despite efforts Credit: ITV Meridian

Medway isn't a city either, despite several calls by officials to the government to make it one.

Well technically we're not a city but we're a city in all but name; nearly 280,000 people, we've got a cathedral, we've for a castle, we've got a lot of things other people don't have and in particular, we've got huge ambition. I think that says it all really.

– Cllr Alan Jarrett, Leader Medway Council, Con

The effort starts now to gain support for an official Medway bid.