£100,000 boost for Leeds Capital of Culture bid as more sponsors line up

Dr. Adam Beaumont, CEO aql; Sharon Watson, chair Leeds 2023 Independent Steering Group; Prew Lumley, real estate partner Squire Patton Boggs; John Alderton, managing partner Squire Patton Boggs. Credit: Mark Bickerdike
X The Business Desk

Register for free to receive latest news stories direct to your inbox


More businesses have come forward to offer their support and financial backing to Leeds’ bid to become European Capital of Culture 2023, giving the campaign a £100,000 funding boost.

Smart telecommunications business aql, based on the South Bank, is joined by law firm Squire Patton Boggs in supporting the city’s ambitious campaign for the European Capital of Culture crown.

Sharon Watson, chair of the Leeds 2023 Independent Steering Group said: “The support from the business community in the city demonstrates our strong commitment to winning this for Leeds and the wider region. Over the last 12 months we have worked hard to bring the city together and are delighted that aql, Squire Patton Boggs and Turner & Townsend are joining the efforts to make Leeds the winning city in this race.”

aql CEO, Dr Adam Beaumont, said: “As a global operator based in Leeds, we need to be able to attract the right talent to allow us to build and maintain world-class communication services. The Leeds 2023 bid is an aspiration to celebrate and broaden the cultural offering in the region. We’re proud to support this drive to send a message that the quality of life and the cultural offer in Leeds and Yorkshire is second to none.”

The last UK city to hold the title was almost a decade ago in Liverpool. The Liverpool 2008 year as European Capital of Culture created a £750m boost for the local economy and attracted 9.7 million visitors to the city.

John Alderton, managing partner of Squire Patton Boggs in Leeds, said: “We are delighted to support the Leeds 2023 bid. As a law firm with a long history in the city, and with offices across the world, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity for us to showcase the eclectic cultural offering that the city has to offer on an international stage. We are looking forward to being part of an initiative that will generate tourism and economic growth whilst ensuring further regeneration and development for the city.”

The announcement comes as the bid team join 3,000 delegates at the annual Buy Yorkshire Conference at Royal Armouries. Now in its seventh year the two-day conference and exhibition will feature more than 185 exhibitors and bring together businesses from across the region to hear from top executives of companies including Lego, Deliveroo, Amazon, Channel 4 and Uber.
The companies join the likes of Yorkshire Building Society, Yorkshire Water and Yorkshire Bank in backing the bid.