Cllr Ben Miskell Standing up for Park & Arbourthorne
A tweet on social media by Councillor Miskell kicked off the campaign for Sheffield to be the host city for Eurovision 2023 in solidarity with twinned Ukranian city Donetsk, which is currently occupied by Russian forces.
Councillor Miskell said: “Hello Europe. This is Sheffield calling. In solidarity with our twinned city of Donetsk, we stand ready to host Eurovision. With a 13,0000+ capacity arena, international airport and the friendliest people on earth, Sheffield and South Yorkshire is a natural choice for BBC Eurovision”.
Cllr Miskell is a Eurovision fan and Labour’s lead and Deputy Chair of the Economic Development and Skills Committee on Sheffield City Council, which is responsible for events throughout the city, under the council’s new committee system of decision making.
Eurovision was won this year by Ukraine and was due to be hosted in the war-torn country, but following a decision by Eurovision organisers, the European Broadcasting Union, it was decided that Ukraine would be unable to host the Europe wide contest due to the security situation. As this year’s runner up, the United Kingdom now automatically has the opportunity to host in 2023.
Council Leader Terry Fox has backed Councillor Miskell’s call and said: “Sheffield is an ideal home for Eurovision next year. Eurovision organisers have said that Ukraine’s win must be reflected in next year’s show and what better way is there to do this than by hosting the event in Sheffield, in solidarity with our twin occupied city of Donetsk. Since the Russian invasions of Ukraine, Sheffielders have come together to support Ukranians, with many hosting refugee families in their own homes. I’m proud of Sheffield for being a City Of Sanctuary”.
He went on to say: “We’ve got an arena that’s ready and waiting, a huge number of good quality hotels and a mass of loyal Eurovision fans that stand ready and waiting. Let’s welcome Eurovision to South Yorkshire and bring it on!”