An update on the Eurovision Song Contest host city shortlist is expected later today, according to the BBC.
Birmingham, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, Newcastle, Sheffield and Manchester form the current shortlist of potential cities to host Eurovision in 2023 in place of Ukraine.
Speaking on BBC Breakfast on Tuesday morning, presenter Sally Nugent said: “This morning, listen very carefully to what I’m saying.
“Ahead of an expected update from our BBC entertainment correspondent Colin Paterson we’re going to be looking at the situation in Manchester.”
After taking a look at how Manchester is hoping to secure the contest, Nugent, 51, said: “As we said earlier, later on today we are expecting an update from the BBC.”
She added: “As soon as we know, you will know.”
Ukrainian entry Kalush Orchestra triumphed at the 2022 competition in Turin, Italy, but the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), which produces the annual event, decided the show cannot be held in the country following Russia’s invasion.
The selected city will be crowned host of the 67th Eurovision Song Contest after the UK was given the chance to host the event for the ninth time – more than any other country – after Sam Ryder came second in the competition.
The shortlist was narrowed down from 20 UK cities who initially submitted an “expression of interest”, with applicants across all four regions demonstrating how they would reflect Ukrainian culture, music and communities.
Of the seven cities shortlisted, six are in England and one is in Scotland, with Belfast failing to make the cut for Northern Ireland.
The cities have each been scored on a set of criteria, the BBC revealed. Requirements include “a suitable venue and sufficient space to deliver the requirements of the Song Contest”, necessary commitment to the contest including a financial contribution, and “alignment with the BBC’s strategic priorities as a public service broadcaster”.
Speaking on BBC Breakfast on Tuesday, the Mancunian singer and former member of The New Seekers, Lyn Paul, said she thinks Manchester would be a great choice.
Paul, 73, who was a part of The New Seekers when they performed for the UK at Eurovision in 1972, said: “Manchester, we’re made of stern stuff, and we’ll get there if we can, any way we can.”
Remembering her Eurovision experience, Paul said: “Walking on that stage and knowing that my mum and dad were in [the stadium] and my auntie and uncle, it was not frightening, no nerves, it was just a real big thrill to think that we were representing our country.”
The New Seekers just missed out on the top spot, coming second to Luxemburg who won for the third time with their entrant Vicky Leandros.