Top 10 attractions that have won the Bradford City of Culture title
WHAT sets Bradford’s bid apart from others is its strong grassroots engagement, particularly with young people.
But the significant cultural developments of recent years, which add to the existing cultural attractions of the district, have also been key to its success.
In 2001, Bradford failed to make the shortlist of European Capitals of Culture. A report from the Ministry of Culture said it lacked cultural attractions to attract visitors. Since then, a series of developments and accolades have transformed Bradford. Here is our Top 10:
* Saltaire: The Victorian model village became a World Heritage Site in 2001. Its independent shops, bars and bistros attract tourists, as well as Salts Mill, home to one of David Hockney’s greatest collections, including his work recently unveiled 295 foot arthouse. A year in Normandy.
Nearby, the historic Shipley Glen Tramway has been taking passengers through the woods for 130 years.
* Bradford Live: Work is underway to transform the city’s former Odeon building into a 4,000-seat live entertainment venue.
* St George’s Hall: Opened in 1853 as the city’s first major public building. Charles Dickens, David Bowie, Queen, Bryan Adams and Blondie have all appeared at the site, which is also home to the Halle Orchestra. In 2016 it underwent a three-year, £9.5million refurbishment.
* Alhambra Theatre: Built in 1914, now considered the North’s premier entertainment venue, hosting musicals, international dance companies and Yorkshire’s largest panto. He’s hosted major West End shows including War Horse, Wicked and The Lion King, which recently completed a two-month run at the Alhambra.
* Haworth: The Bronte Parsonage Museum attracts visitors from all over the world. Haworth holds steampunk and 1940s weekends each year and the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway has appeared in The Railway Children.
* National Museum of Science and Media: The site has seven floors of galleries, with permanent exhibitions on photography, television, animation and video games. It has three cinemas, including Europe’s first IMAX screen, and hosts festivals dedicated to big-screen cinema, video games and science.
* City of Film: In 2009, Bradford became the world’s first UNESCO City of Film. The team works with major producers, securing locations and filming logistics in the neighborhood. Productions filmed here include Peaky Blinders, The Queen, The Duke and Downton Abbey.
* Bradford Literature Festival: Launched in 2014, this internationally acclaimed annual event has hosted star guests such as Kate Bush, Janette Winterson and Ian Rankin.
* City Park: Since opening in 2012, City Park and the Mirror Pool – the UK’s largest urban water feature – has been used for arts events and a filming location for Ackley Bridge and DCI Banks TV .
* Cartwright Hall: Collections include British and South Asian art. His Hockney Gallery has an unrivaled public collection, including early works by the Bradford-born artist. Cartwright Hall is located in Lister Park, with its boating lake, renovated adventure playground and the beautiful Mughal Gardens.