From Goole to Gibraltar: Cities Prepare to Fight for City Status in 2022 | The Queen

We could forgive the good bourgeois of Goole for being a little upset: what chance do they have against Gibraltar?

Old feuds have been dusted off and battle lines mapped out, as the competition to decide which city will achieve city status as part of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations begins in earnest – with the Cayman Islands, Gibraltar and the Falklands included for the first time.

The competition, in which 39 venues across the UK and the British Overseas Territories will compete to become a city, is part of a series of celebrations planned to mark the 70th anniversary of the Queen’s reign next year.

Town status has traditionally been associated with having an Anglican cathedral, although this link has long been broken and the monarch may raise towns based on advice from the government.

Among the smaller Davids who hope to take on the Goliaths of the British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies is Marazion, a small Cornish village outside of Penzance (population 1,440) and Oban in the highlands. Scottish (8,490 inhabitants).

A fishing boat at the port of Oban. Photograph: Russell Cheyne / Reuters

Marazion Chamber of Commerce chairman Paul Elliott said that while the picturesque corner on the shore of Mount’s Bay was a “small town,” his business welcomed more than 400,000 UK and international visitors each year.

The smallest town in the UK today is St David’s in Wales, which has a population of 1,841.

The mood was upbeat in Goole, East Yorkshire, with a report from East Riding Council confidently saying he had ‘a good case for success’, even though he faced his unofficial sister city , Gibraltar.

The harbor town of Humber is best known for its historic coal-fired winches. In contrast, Gibraltar clings to a rock off the southern coast of Spain seized by the British in 1704 for strategic reasons. Some regions have submitted entire council regions for consideration as towns – such as South Ayrshire in Scotland or Medway in Kent.

Rochester Cathedral.
Rochester Cathedral. Photograph: Chris J Ratcliffe / Getty Images

Medway’s advice applies in an attempt to right a historic wrong. The local authority was formed in 1998 when the town of Gillingham merged with the historic town of Rochester. Sadly, four years later, it was discovered that as part of the amalgamation process, the council had failed to appoint directors to protect Rochester’s historic rights – meaning its city status was irrevocably lost. .

Some cities applying for city status have already attempted to apply the label informally, although they do not have formal approval from the monarch. Guildford football club is Guildford City FC. Elgin in northern Scotland – which already greets visitors with signs declaring itself a ‘historic cathedral town’ – has also called for formal recognition.

Other contenders include Doncaster, South Yorkshire; Crewe, Cheshire; Livingstone, West Lothian; Ballymena, County Antrim and Dudley, West Midlands.

They will face Stanley in the Falkland Islands, nearly 8,000 miles away. There have also been entrances from George Town to the Cayman Islands – and all of Gibraltar.

Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands.
Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands. Photograph: Pablo Porciuncula Brune / AFP / Getty Images

Breaking away from previous civic honors competitions, a group of experts will work closely with ministers to make their recommendations, which will then be approved by the Queen. As part of the orientation, applicants were asked to provide details of “the distinct identity and community which they believed meant their region deserved to become a city”, as well as the royal associations in their region. .

The new town (s) will be added to Southend-on-Sea, which was given town status from the Queen in honor of her longtime MP Sir David Amess, who was fatally stabbed during surgery in his constituency.

Cabinet Office Minister Steve Barclay called the list a “celebration of rich and diverse communities,” including more distant “friends”.

“It is fitting that, as we consider celebrating the 70 years of Her Majesty The Queen’s reign, we expand the competition to include those parts of the world which also hold her so dearly,” he said.

The complete list:

Alcester, Warwickshire; Ballymena, County Antrim; Bangor, County Down; Blackburn, Lancashire; Bolsover, Derbyshire; Boston, Lincolnshire; Bornemouth, Dorset; Coleraine, County Londonderry; Colchester, Essex; Crawley, West Sussex; Crewe, Cheshire; Doncaster, South Yorkshire; Dorchester, Dorset; Douglas, Isle of man; Dudley, West Midlands; Dumfries, Dumfries and Galloway; Dunfermline, Fife; Elgin, Moray; George town, the Cayman Islands; Gibraltar, Gibraltar; Goole, East Yorkshire; Greenock, Renfrewshire; Guildford, Surrey; Livingston, West Lothian; Marazion, Cornwall; Medway, Kent; Middlesbrough, North Yorkshire; Milton keynes, Buckinghamshire; Newport and Carisbrooke, Hampshire; Northampton, Northamptonshire; Oban, Argyll and Bute; Reading, Berkshire; Peel, Isle of man; Saint Andrew, Fife; Stanley, The Falkland Islands; South Ayrshire, Ayrshire and Arran; Warrington, Cheshire; Warwick, Warwickshire; Wrexham, Clwyd.

The full list of cities that have applied for Lord Provost / Lord Mayor status:

Bath, Somerset; Derby, Derbyshire; Gloucester, Gloucestershire; Inverness, Inverness; Lancaster, Lancashire; Lincoln, Lincolnshire; Newport, Gwen; Perth, Perth and Kinross; Southampton, Hampshire; Sunderland, Tyne and Wear; Wolverhampton, West Midlands; Worcester, Worcestershire.


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