Brighton puts in bid to host Eurovision 2023 nearly 50 years after Abba's historic win in city

The pop group Abba congratulate each other in Brighton, after winning the Eurovision Song Contest for Sweden with "Waterloo", sung by the girls, Annifrid Lyngstad (Frida), second left, and Agnetha Faltskog (Anna). The other group members, Benny Andersson, left, and Bjorn Ulvaeus, composed the song.
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Abba celebrates winning Eurovision in Brighton in 1974 - before going on to become legendary hitmakers. Credit: PA/PA Archive/PA Images

Brighton and Hove City Council is to enter a bid to host Eurovision 2023, almost 50 years after ABBA's historic win in the city.

It comes after it was announced that 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.

However, the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) has said 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 in the UK, more than any other country.

Since the announcement, a number of cities, including Brighton and Hove, have declared their interest in hosting the competition.

London, Cardiff, Birmingham and Manchester have all expressed an interest in hosting.

Brighton and Hove City Council hopes to host the Eurovision song contest in 2023. Credit: Kieran Cleeves/EMPICS Entertainment

Councillor Phélim Mac Cafferty, Leader, Brighton & Hove City Council, said: "It would be an honour to host Eurovision on behalf of Ukraine.

"Of course, it was in Brighton and Hove that ABBA launched their global career when they won with Waterloo at the Brighton Dome in 1974.

"We'd love to see the event come back to the city and share some of our lucky stardust with the next global superstars.

"We will now approach the European Broadcasting Union and the BBC to formally express our interest.

"We know that many other cities will be interested in hosting and we look forward to hearing which city will be successful.

"After all, as ABBA have said, the winner takes it all."